Learn from master therapists and bring your skills to the next level
Bringing a breath of fresh air to the therapy profession, this compelling and thoughtful resource urges readers to move from competency to full mastery in the mental health field. Combining the findings of hundreds of previous studies, interviews with a wide range of master therapists, own unique experiences and perspectives, Jeffery A. Kottler and Jon Carlson have devised a guide that takes therapists out of their comfort zones.
Professionals in the fields of psychology, counseling, social work, and human services, as well as graduate students studying for these professions, will find a level of honesty and candor in this resource, which tackles a range of essential topics in a frank, personal tone, and closes with a meaningful discussion about the challenges of striving for mastery. Master therapists and authors Kottler and Carlson explore a range of hot-button topics, such as:
Disliking your clients (or having clients dislike you)
Receiving negative feedback from clients
Injecting creativity into the therapeutic process
Finding time for social justice and advocacy
On Being a Master Therapist provides a much-needed look at a range of topics that aren't often given such genuine and insightful treatment, with the goal of helping you attain the attributes that truly distinguish excellence in clinical practice. Start on your journey toward mastery with this thoughtful resource.
JEFFREY A. KOTTLER, PhD, is Professor of Counseling at California State University, Fullerton and Founder of Empower Nepali Girls, an organization that provides educational scholarships for at-risk children in Nepal. JON CARLSON, Psy.D, Ed.D, is a Distinguished Professor of Psychology and Counseling at Governors State University, University Park, Illinois and a psychologist with the Wellness Clinic in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin.
Preface ix Introduction: Two Variations on a Theme 1 1 What Is a Master Therapist Anyway And How Do You Get to Be One? 11 What Is a Master Therapist? 13 Different Standards of Mastery 15 Client and Therapist Perceptions of Outcomes 18 Definitions of Mastery by Experts on the Subject 20 2 What We (Think We) Know So Far 25 A Movement Toward Consensus 25 What Does Make a Difference? 28 Talking to the Masters 34 What Famous Therapists Appear to Have in Common 38 3 Deep Compassion and Caring 45 Creating Connections 46 Commitment and Investment 52 The Growth Edge 57 4 Sophisticated Interpersonal Skills: Really, Really Listening 61 How d You Do That? 65 Little Things Make a Huge Difference 68 Listening Differently 71 Being in the Moment 74 5 Being Fully Present While Focusing on the Other 75 Altered States of Being 79 Mind Chatter 80 A Way of Being 84 Staying Present With Ourselves 87 6 Knowing What Maybe/Probably/Mostly Makes a Difference 89 What Makes a Difference? 91 Beyond Understanding: Honoring Magic and Mystery 108 7 Speaking the Truth 111 Lies in Therapy 112 Confronting Deception 113 Hard Truths 118 Taking Risks and Exploring the Unknown 123 8 Making Mistakes But Not the Same Ones Over and Over 127 Making Mistakes Isn t the Problem 128 Practicing Self-Compassion 133 Most Common Mistakes 136 Mistakes or Just Data to Process? 141 9 Inviting and Responding to Constructive Feedback 143 Sources of Feedback 148 Clients Are the Best Teachers 149 Feedback That s Most Helpful 150 Processing Feedback Gratefully 151 Being Accountable to Ourselves, Our Colleagues, and Our Clients 153 Life-Changing Feedback 157 Recruiting Master Coaches and Mentors 158 How We Know What We Know 165 10 Who You Are Is as Important as What You Do 167 Who We Are Versus What We Do 168 Qualities of Master Therapists 169 Practicing Self-Compassion 175 Modeling As Best We Can 176 11 Acknowledging Commonalities, Responding to Differences 181 Multiple Cultural Identities 182 An Individual s Multiplicity of Cultures 183 What We Share in Common 188 Metabolizing Theory and Embracing Complexity 189 12 Love Is a Four-Letter Word in Therapy 193 Multiple Dimensions of Caring 194 Owning Our Personal Motives 196 Learning How to Love 197 Love Is Always Possible 199 13 Getting Wild and a Little Crazy: Promoting Creative Breakthroughs 205 When Models and Theories Limit Our Creative Options 206 Sorting Out All the Voices in Our Heads 209 On Being Creative 211 Seeking New Knowledge While Embracing Mystery 214 You ve Never Heard of the Most Creative Therapists 218 Thinking Differently About Problems 221 Where Has Creativity Gone? 224 14 Promoting Social Interest and Advocacy 227 Who Has Time for This? 228 Real Master Therapists in Action 229 Consistent Themes Related to Advocacy Efforts 236 Let s Be Honest, Really Honest 237 Full Circle 240 15 Being a Work in Progress 243 A Voracious Curiosity 244 Confronting Despair Versus Hope 246 What Has Been Most Helpful Along the Way 250 What Has Been Least Helpful Along the Way 257 It s About Relationships, Not Content 259 Mastery Means Being Able to Accept Mystery 261 Epilogue 265 References 267 About the Authors 279 Index 281