Schema Therapy, a popular intervention in Europe, is now growing in popularity in the United States. It integrates elements of Gestalt psychology, cognitive-behavioral therapy, transactional analysis, object relations, and attachment theories into a unified therapeutic system. Its approach is sympathetic, empathic, humane, respectful, and caring. Its main goal is to help clients become “unstuck” from negative life patterns of behaviors, thoughts and beliefs about themselves and others, which often cause distress and difficulties in relationships with family, friends, and collegues. Schema therapy is powerful in that it helps us step outside of ourselves and helps us examine how our core attachment needs (safety, protection, trust, love, care, warmth, understanding, compassion) that have at times gone unmet since early childhood, can have detrimental effects on our behaviors, thoughts and beliefs (schemas), in adulthood, when left unaddressed. Schema therapy is powerful and lasting in its effect towards individual empowerment. It can often save months and even years of treatment time versus traditional talk therapy.
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