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What Beowulf Taught me about Playfulness

Since my involvement as RO DBT, I have learned a lot about playfulness.  Clinically, I have learned that bringing playful irreverence into the therapy room and skills class functions to model to people who lean to overcontrol (OC; of which I am one) that chilling out is therapeutic. After all, if we are not playful […]

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Which Witch is a Witch? The Power of Perceptual Biases

For many years, I taught at the post-secondary level, mostly in the field of Child and Youth Care (or social pedagogy as it known in Europe).  The first teaching gig I had involved me holding my breath behind the lectern hoping I would pass out, but that is another story for another blog.  One of […]

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A Story In Two Parts: A Supervisee’s Tale Part 2

Part 2: Rupture and Repair Last week, I did something that felt pretty vulnerable and shared on this blog about my relationship with my supervisor during internship/post doc, the special connection we have and the ways in which we used Radically Open Dialectical Behavior Therapy (RODBT) in supervision. There were many parts of this RODBT […]

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A Story In Two Parts: A Supervisee’s Tale Part 1

Part 1: The Connection “Before I can answer a client’s question, you respond. I don’t feel like we are co-leading, but like I’m observing you lead,” I say to my supervisor three months into my predoctoral internship in clinical psychology regarding a Dialectical Behavior Therapy Skills group we are running together. What I leave unspoken […]

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Chilling Out is Therapeutic – Even for RO DBT Therapists

When I teach skills class, I will confess I kinda cringe when we get to lesson 5.  Week 5 is dedicated to Engaging in Novel Behaviour and includes a discussion of the art of non-productivity.  For someone who leans toward over control (OC), my brain automatically switches the term “non-productivity” to “laziness.”  I cringe because […]

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The Art of Teasing

“Are you going to give him a dog treat too?” My friend teases with a coy smile. Her tone is warm and friendly and I can feel her gaze just out of my line of sight. Just a moment before I had been mechanically rewarding a child I hardly knew with a “well done” for […]

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Take it Teasy

I have been giving more thought to the concept of teasing lately. Often in my experience as an educator and clinical supervisor, I have noted how clinical assessments and case conceptualizations sometimes conflate teasing with bullying. “Oh, he was really teased in middle school” or “my parents were relentless teasers.”  And the use of these terms […]

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OC, AND PROUD OF IT!

In my early days of learning about RO-DBT I didn’t connect the dots that maybe…just maybe I was OC (overcontrolled). It wasn’t until I started to teach the skills to Veterans in a group (we call it class 😊) format that I started to realize, that I am OC! (I was later given much needed […]

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Bitterness, revenge and fox gloves

One of the major themes that is covered in RO DBT is that of bitterness.  If you say the word out loud, it can sound like it tastes – harsh.  When I say the word out loud, my lip inadvertently curls into a contemptuous social signal.  It’s like bitterness and contempt walk hand in hand.  […]

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An Epidemic of Loneliness: There’s no shortage of people in the world. So why are so many so lonely?

Many people all over the world express feeling a tremendous loneliness. Frieda Fromm Reichmann defines loneliness as the want of intimacy, and it has long been recognized as a serious and painful issue. Mother Teresa once said, “The biggest disease today is not leprosy or cancer or tuberculosis, but rather the feeling of being unwanted, uncared for, and […]

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Pushing Through Pain: aka Too Much Impulse Control

I am in yoga class and have just been silently congratulating myself on my amazing Crow pose (resting my knees on my upper arms, feet up, with just my palms touching the ground). I’m thinking how awesome I have become at this posture and really feel secure in it. And then, I fall. Hope Arnold, […]

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The Other F Word: FAKE

Much of RO DBT therapy includes an emphasis on practicing skills that will help people who lean toward overcontrol (OC) get back into the tribe, and as a result, back to optimal mental health.  According to Lynch, psychological health or well-being in RO DBT is hypothesized to involve three core transacting features: Receptivity and Openness […]

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