The Making of a Therapist: A Practical Guide for the Inner Journey / Edition 1

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Lessons from the personal experience and reflections of a therapist.
The difficulty and cost of training psychotherapists properly is well known. It is far easier to provide a series of classes while ignoring the more challenging personal components of training. Despite the fact that the therapist's self-insight, emotional maturity, and calm centeredness are critical for successful psychotherapy, rote knowledge and technical skills are the focus of most training programs. As a result, the therapist's personal growth is either marginalized or ignored. The Making of a Therapist counters this trend by offering graduate students and beginning therapists a personal account of this important inner journey.
Cozolino provides a unique look inside the mind and heart of an experienced therapist. Readers will find an exciting and privileged window into the experience of the therapist who, like themselves, is just starting out. In addition, The Making of a Therapist contains the practical advice, common-sense wisdom, and self-disclosure that practicing professionals have found to be the most helpful during their own training.The first part of the book, 'Getting Through Your First Sessions,' takes readers through the often-perilous days and weeks of conducting initial sessions with real clients. Cozolino addresses such basic concerns as: Do I need to be completely healthy myself before I can help others? What do I do if someone comes to me with an issue or problem I can't handle? What should I do if I have trouble listening to my clients? What if a client scares me? The second section of the book, 'Getting to Know Your Clients,' delves into the routine of therapy and the subsequent stages in which you continue to work with clients and help them. In this context, Cozolino presents the notion of the 'good enough' therapist, one who can surrender to his or her own imperfections while still guiding the therapeutic relationship to a positive outcome.
The final section, 'Getting to Know Yourself,' goes to the core of the therapist's relation to him- or herself, addressing such issues as: How to turn your weaknesses into strengths, and how to deal with the complicated issues of pathological caretaking, countertransference, and self-care.Both an excellent introduction to the field as well as a valuable refresher for the experienced clinician, The Making of a Therapist offers readers the tools and insight that make the journey of becoming a therapist a rich and rewarding experience.

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Editorial Reviews

“This is clearly a book written by an expert therapist… [F]ull of practical advice, common-sense wisdom and self-disclosure… His advice to and support for beginning therapists is not only compassionate but also inspiring… [E]xtremely readable and the cases so interesting that it could be read also by non-specialists, by anybody who is interested in human nature and human relationships. Highly recommended for psychologists as well as for educators.”
Pam Richardson
“The Making of a Therapist is a very refreshing and honest book that seeks to support and inform therapists starting out and in practice of the vital importance of self-awareness, self-monitoring and self-care. . . . Cozolino takes his reader back to his own hesitant beginnings as a qualified therapist launching out into practice with real clients. His accounts are sensitively humorous, honest and very reassuring, offering genuine empathy, which the author believes would inspire any practitioner of a talking intervention. Dealing with the important issues of getting through the initial sessions, understanding one's own competence and what to do if there is concern in this area with a client are all treated with common sense wisdom and practical advice. 'Each mistake is an opportunity to make a good mistake. It all depends on how you handle it' is an enlightened way to help any human being to stop trying to be perfect and to know that whatever happens, they can learn from it and move on. . . . Cozolino has also produced a work that I would recommend that a practicing coach read also. The Making of a Therapist is a valuable read for any one involved in a talking intervention.”
Journal of Critical Psychology
“The clear writing style makes it easy to read and sensitively approaches a variety of subject areas. . . . A must buy for those in training and also for lecturers.”
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780393704242
  • Publisher: Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
  • Publication date: 5/19/2004
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 213
  • Sales rank: 190,823
  • Product dimensions: 5.80 (w) x 8.60 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Louis Cozolino, PhD, is a professor of psychology at Pepperdine University and a private practitioner. He is the author of The Healthy Aging Brain, The Neuroscience of Human Relationships, The Neuroscience of Psychotherapy, and The Making of a Therapist. He lives in Los Angeles, California.

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Table of Contents

Pt. 1 Getting through your first sessions
1 What have I gotten myself into? 5
2 Getting centered and learning to listen 16
3 Now what do I do? 29
4 Survival strategies 41
5 Beware of assumptions 55
Pt. 2 Getting to know your clients
6 Challenges and strategies 69
7 The therapist's feelings : anticipated and unanticipated 91
8 It's scary to go to therapy : the paradox of client resistance 105
9 In the eye of the storm : the therapist's challenge 132
10 Turning weaknesses into strengths 149
Pt. 3 Getting to know yourself
11 Uncovering countertransference 165
12 The making of a caretaker 176
13 Building a satisfying and sane career : cautions and encouragement 188
14 Walkin' the walk 204
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