Inner Strengths: Contemporary Psychotherapy and Hypnosis for Ego-Strengthening

Inner Strengths: Contemporary Psychotherapy and Hypnosis for Ego-Strengthening

Inner Strengths: Contemporary Psychotherapy and Hypnosis for Ego-Strengthening

Inner Strengths: Contemporary Psychotherapy and Hypnosis for Ego-Strengthening


However it is conceived and described by psychotherapists with different orientations, a stronger ego is a universally-acknowledged goal of therapeutic work. Inner Strengthsis the first book to meet the need for a comprehensive treatment of approaches to ego-strengthening in psychotherapy. It provides contemporary psychodynamic, object relations, self-psychology, ego state, and transpersonal theoretical models for understanding how and why ego-strengthening occurs.

The authors are experienced psychotherapists who integrate hypnosis into their own practice of psychotherapy. They have been active in developing the newer, projective-evocative ego-strengthening techniques emphasizing the utilization of patients' inner resources. They survey the history of ego-strengthening efforts and show how that which has been considered intrinsically hypnotic connects with the great traditions of psychotherapy. Additionally, they offer step-by-step instructions for a diversity of ego-strengthening methods that can be used for patient self-care, internal boundary formation, and personality maturation in a wide range of clinical conditions. Their discussion of the fundamental concepts of ego-strengthening draws on their theoretical and clinical explorations of dynamic internal resources such as memory, strength, wisdom, self-soothing, and love. Throughout the book, theory is balanced by an unusual richness of extended clinical examples and a wide variety of practical ego-strengthening scripts.

Clinicians need not be trained in hypnosis to find Inner Strengthsclarifying and helpful reading; the fundamental points so vividly made by the authors are relevant to many nonhypnotic-therapeutic interventions and issues.


Stephen Gilligan

A letter arrived in the mail yesterday. It was from a woman who had been in therapy with me some years back. Out of the envelope fell a picture of her, so happy and proud, holding a beautiful, bright-eyed infant. a typed message formally announced that she had adopted this baby, and written underneath were simply the words, "With amazement, gratitude, and joy!!" Indeed! What an incredible sight to behold the beauty of both mother and child, reflected in their sparkling eyes. How different was the look in her eyes from when she had started therapy. Then she was depressed, suicidal, deeply pained. She felt useless, unlovable, and isolated. For my part, I felt overwhelmed by her at many points in the work, wondering if and how her healing might occur. Even when she terminated therapy after several years, coinciding with a job-related move back to the east coast, I wondered how she would fare. I was cautiously hopeful but then lost track of her. the picture was a welcome answer to my curiosities and hopes about her continued development.

Part of the difficulty was that many things I tried with her just did not work. They seemed to appropriately map into the client's patterns, but something inside her just couldn't or wouldn't positively respond. It was dismaying and frustrating to both of us that the therapeutic work progressed so slowly and haphazardly. That it was ultimately successful despite my fumblings is a testimony to her great strengths and commitment.

That therapy can succeed without the therapist being brilliant or allknowing is one of the better kept secrets in the clinical field. Actually, it seems that many times the therapist actually needs to fail in order for the therapy to succeed. It is only then that the patient's own resources can adequately be appreciated as the ultimate determinant of therapeutic success.

I wish that this wonderful book written by Claire Frederick and Shirley McNeal had been available to me then, for it would have helped me . . .

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