Constructive Psychotherapy: A Practical Guide

Constructive Psychotherapy: A Practical Guide

Constructive Psychotherapy: A Practical Guide

Constructive Psychotherapy: A Practical Guide

Synopsis

This is a book about how to do psychotherapy - how to apply the science of change to the complexities of helping people develop new meanings in their lives. Michael J. Mahoney's integrative perspective, clinical wisdom, and engaging, personal style make this a vital resource for everyone from students to seasoned professionals. Beyond providing a clear exposition of constructivist principles, Mahoney illuminates what a skilled therapist actually does in day-to-day practice. Guidelines are presented for assessing clients and implementing a variety of interventions, including centering techniques, problem solving, pattern work, meditation and embodiment exercises, drama and dream work, and spiritual exploration. Illustrated with rich case examples, the book highlights ways to nurture the therapeutic relationship and support the therapist's own self-discovery and growth. Appendices feature reproducible client forms, handouts, and other useful materials.

Excerpt

FOREWORD
“On the Wings of Words…”

Reading this book, I was reminded of a comment that my youngest son made many years ago. He was about 5 years old, and he and I were watching a young bird attempt its first flight from the nest. After watching this little drama for some time, my son said, “There's lots of flappin', but not much flyin'.” I have the same assessment of most new books that I read in psychology these days. Michael Mahoney's latest volume, however, is the exception. His ideas and heartfelt writing literally take off and make my mind soar with possibilities. Somehow, Mahoney can reach places in my soul that go untouched by other psychologists. The places on which he lays his writer's hands are deeply human; they are reached only by a scholar with quintessential scientific insights and limitless humility.

This volume is Mahoney's magnum opus. I say this with some degree of history, in that I have read most everything that this man has written. When evaluating psychologists, I think of the positive end of the continuum that goes from those who do good work to those whose ideas set the agenda for others and those whose research and words are cited widely— and then there is the “Mahoney category” that entails all the virtues, yet transcends normal terms of description. To rekindle my son's early metaphor about flight, Mahoney's ideas ascend—with grace and sway resulting from simple and convincing logic. There is an ease and exhilaration in Mahoney's writing that, for me, comes from the pleasures of having learned very sophisticated notions that heretofore have escaped my own more limited powers of thought. Indeed, perhaps the highest praise I can give this book is that it takes me places I could not go on my own.

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