Thursday, March 29, 2012

Changing Seats From The Transformer To The Transformed!

By Tara Dickherber, M.Ed, LPC

Certified Practitioner, Rapid Resolution Therapy
Executive Director, Institute for Survivors of Sexual Violence

As counselors, social workers, psychologists, and other healthcare providers, we are "caretakers" for everyone else, and it is time to take care of ourselves. Now that I have training in Rapid Resolution Therapy, I know that my stress levels have greatly decreased.

My training and new abilities to be a healer are directly related to a private work with Dr. Connelly for some personal ghost busting. My self-care did not stop there. I also volunteered to share some of my personal traumas during a recent training and allowed other practitioners to practice and clear me. Personal healing also was available for me and other therapists during our small group work during the retreat.

After all of these years working in the mental health field, it still amazes me how few of us are willing to sit in the client's seat. My clients can only become as healthy and joyful as I am, so if I want to transform from counselor to healer I must get healed myself. Every time I put myself in the client/training chair, I have come home to find that my own RRT skills have just soared higher than they were before I left for training.

If you're heading to a Rapid Resolution Therapy training soon, then give it a go! Just change seats for a while from the transformer to the transformed! If you're really not keen about being up front, then try out a small group and seek another practitioner out for your own private session at some time!

Be well, Be happy - Tara

Tara S. Dickherber, M.Ed, LPC573-754-0348
1360 S 5th St., Suite 394, St. Charles, MO 63301

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

How RRT Cleared A 7-Year Old Girl's Trauma

By Joy Finch, M.S., NCC
Certified Practitioner, Rapid Resolution Therapy

This 7-year-old child was referred by the psychiatric hospital upon release. One year prior to her hospitalization she was physically and sexually assaulted by two babysitters. Her presenting issues prior to treatment were escalating behavioral issues, anxiety, suicidal ideations, threats and attempts which led to being hospitalized three times within one year. Her suicidal attempts included cutting, hanging and suffocating herself. She had also been through four months of therapy. Her single mother was desperate for help with several younger children to care for while providing 24/7 suicide watch.

When I met with her for treatment she refused to leave her mother's sight so I sat with her on the front steps of her mobile home with the door open and her mother sitting just inside. I established connection with her and created a baseline visual metaphor with her which is a visual symbol created by the participant for the way her mind has been responding to the traumatic event. Her baseline visual metaphor was, in her words, "like a tornado--dark."

I cleared the traumatic memory using RRT while keeping the child emotionally present and responding to what was happening which was sitting with me playing a game on the front steps of her home. This game involved her sharing the narrative of the traumatic event with ease and laughter. This game of telling and retelling her story while correcting me as I recounted the story with intentional inaccuracy was so funny to her that she collapsed in laughter and her mother, overhearing this life changing conversation, was laughing too. The horrible "incident" had become as innocuous as data on a sheet of paper. The setting allowed mom to reprocess the experience too.

A final RRT intervention intended to update inner mind involves a process through which the child learns that the traumatic event no longer exists and that there is nothing that needs to be done was once again completed with ease and laughter. When I asked her about the "tornado-- dark", she said, "It's not there anymore." Then she added, "It's done!" while motioning her extended thumb over her shoulder with a big smile.

It has been almost two months since RRT and this child has had no further mention or indication of any suicidal thoughts, ideas or plans. The family continues to experience difficulties including eviction, however, thankfully they are no longer dealing with this stressor.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

ISSV: The Violence Against Women Act

By Tara Dickherber, M.Ed, LPC
Certified Practitioner, Rapid Resolution Therapy

As shocking as it may seem, there are many amazing and talented women in the ISSV/IRRT community. We are dedicated, both men and women, to making this a safer and healthier world. One way that we have made a step in that direction is to make it known that we, as a community, stand by the policies of the Violence Against Women Act. The way we have recently done this is by signing on to the NFT VAWA (National Task Force to End Sexual and Domestic Violence Against Women) letter to our Senators and Representatives to reauthorize the VAWA.

VAWA programs help create safety for victims of domestic and sexual violence as well as holding perpetrators accountable. It was amazing to me to learn that in the first six years of the start of the VAWA, such programs saved nearly $12.6 billion net averted social costs. Did you know that the rate of non-fatal intimate partner violence against women has decreased by 63 percent because more women are reporting domestic violence to the police? To me those are amazingly huge numbers!

The VAWA is due for reauthorization soon. If you would like to voice your opinion personally or if your organization/company would like to take a stand for this incredibly significant organization, please click here to see how to make that happen.

I also want to put out a big THANK YOU to everyone who has come forward to volunteer their time, knowledge, and talents to the ISSV committee. I am so amazed and excited to see the ISSV growing. We will be 10 years in the making next year, and I have no doubt given all the support and input that I am finding as the Executive Director that 2012 will be the best year yet. I cannot say it enough how grateful I am to be a part of this amazing community of transformative healers. May we continue to find ways to transform the lives of the many survivors out there!

Be well, Be happy - Tara

Tara S. Dickherber, M.Ed, LPC573-754-0348
1360 S 5th St., Suite 394, St. Charles, MO 63301

Monday, March 19, 2012

RRT Simply Adjusts That Small Facet of Mind To Work To Your Benefit

“Disturbing experiences affect us, more specifically, these experiences affect our minds. The majority of our minds work well, however there is a small facet having been affected by these troubling experiences that may not be working to our best advantage.

Rapid Resolution Therapy adjusts that small facet of mind so that your thoughts, feelings and behaviors are working to your benefit.”

~ Jon Connelly, LCSW, PhD

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Practitioners Share Their RRT Level I Training Experience

“Someday I'll get to brag about getting to learn from the genius!” ~ Suzanne Fix, LCSW

“Excellent! I came away with an approach I can apply immediately in clinical work with clients.” ~ Marilyn Witbeck Bowman, LAPC

“Practice and Life-changing!” ~ Christine Mezza, LPC

“This training was intense and incredibly empowering. I know that more people, including me, are happier, freer and contributing more for all of us.” ~ Karen Grannis, LPC

Monday, March 12, 2012

Asking the Right Question

Jon Connelly, the creator and master teacher of Rapid Resolution Therapy, will generally start a session off with a question. Something like…

"I'm wanting what we get done for you today to be really valuable. Do you have a sense of what that would be?"

It's worth pausing and taking in how different this question is from the usual ones that therapists ask. Many are still doing years later what they were taught in graduate school--to "take a good history." The client mentions a symptom, issue, or struggle and the traditional therapist is off on a psychosocial and historical excavation. In all fairness, many of us wouldn't get paid by third parties or the client wouldn't get admitted to our programs without it. So it is perhaps the case that many of us pursue this line against our own best instincts.

It particularly matters in trauma work that participants not be plunged into their past without the proper foundation being laid. After all, they've told or thought about their core story of trauma, injury, or abuse many times before and it only tends to lead them into either a rehearsed rehash of misery or a triggered, abreactive state which they can't easily turn off. Once this happens, it is hard to recoup the atmosphere of safety they so badly need.

Rapid Resolution therapists aren't trying to probe irrational thoughts, create genograms, trace substance abuse histories or any number of other therapist-centered agendas, illuminating as those may be. They are letting the participant teach them what is most needed right now to unlock the mind. They are conveying the participant is a valued human being, not a disease category. They are listening to the living human document, quickly noting silently the way mind has been affected by something that has happened. They are conveying positive regard for the strengths the participant has brought with them. They are uplifting and looking forward to a finished product.

If you look closely at Connelly's question, it is brimming over with collaboration and hope--that together we are heading somewhere new. Together we are about to do something really effective.

Hearing this message, participants are more likely to enter into a special state of consciousness called "connection." It registers with them that the therapist is not so interested in what is wrong with them, as what has happened to them; looking not so much at what is broken, as at the person who is still basically intact and already on their way to who they want to be. Odds are they have never been treated this way before in therapy. It is a powerful place to start from, and is entirely possible if only we learn to ask the right question.

Mark A. Chidley, LMHC, CAP, a fully licensed mental health counselor and certified addictions professional, offers counseling services at his office Kelly San Carlos Executive Center in Fort Myers, Florida.He has been in private practice since 1997. He holds certifications in Rapid Trauma Resolution (2010), Imago Relationship therapy (2001), and now specializes in the treatment of couples as well as individual trauma recovery and anxiety issues. He brings rich experience from a combined 26 years of hospital work and mental health counseling.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

RRT Level I Training: “What? No note taking?! Is this guy SERIOUS?”

“The training was enlightening, and nothing that I could have imagined. At first, I was very uncomfortable and out of my element…

“What? No note taking?! Is this guy SERIOUS? How am I supposed to learn?!”

At the end of the first day, I went to bed thinking that all of this great information had rushed into my head during the day and just as quickly rushed back out as soon as I stepped out of the conference room door. The next morning, we ran through an exercise in our small groups, and I was amazed to find that I remembered a few things. Not only that, but my first attempt ever at “inducing” someone was successful…the trance worked, in the end she had more peace about the situation, and the baseline visual had changed. “This stuff works?!”

Mid-way through the second day, I was finally getting it. I was absorbing it. I had it down. And THEN Dr. Connelly introduced a whole new element… working with sexual trauma. Bleh. I left feeling the same way I felt at the end of the first day.

But that night while I was going to sleep, I had a revelation: he had been giving us little hypnotic suggestions the whole time and that’s how we were supposed to learn! That’s why it was important for us to attend to him and not be glued to note taking. And it was working, because the language was repeating itself over and over in my mind like a record that night.

On the third day, working with sexual trauma became a little more cemented. Leaving the three-day training, I feel like I have the basic scripts down, but needed a lot of practice with the story-telling, which is something that Dr. Connelly is so good at. I have not had a chance to practice the scripts professionally yet, as Dr. Connelly suggested not implementing this with patients who are already being seen. On a personal level, of course I gained insight along the way, and gained my own peace about some things.

I am excited about the Level II training, as I have many patients who struggle with anxiety/panic/phobia.

This training was so different from anything I have ever experienced, and I am looking forward to the journey!”

Kimberly Wildes, DrPH, MA, LPC, NCC

Monday, March 5, 2012

“One Starfish at a Time” – An RRT Success!

“Immediately after training with you, Jon, I realized that Rapid Resolution Therapy would change the way I thought about the world. I no longer saw trauma or my clients the same way. But when I went back to work and used what you taught me, I realized that I could help children with their deepest fears and wounds, and I would never work the same way again.

I have never gone back to my old way of working. That was almost 8-years ago, and I still have the same feeling. Just last week a little girl told me, “Ms. Molly, I feel like I can breathe again.” One starfish at a time, Jon. Thank you for changing the world through your work and for being such an inspiration!”

~ RRT Master Certified Practitioner, Molly Sanford, LCSW