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  Counseling & Psychotherapy

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I have been providing counseling and psychotherapy for over 30 years. I have always kept track of the results of employing different techniques and interventions as my knowledge and experience have evolved. My approach to doing counseling and psychotherapy is termed Brief Cognitive Hypnosis & Psychotherapy. It is informed by the latest developments in the field as reported in the literature, my continuing education training, and my clinical experience with clients.

In the practice of Brief Cognitive Hypnosis & Psychotherapy, we challenge the clientís established belief systems so that the possibility of change can occur. All clients enter into the therapeutic relationship with a number of established beliefs that tend to be expressed as absolutes. Often, the events they describe are verbalized as ALWAYS happening. Clients then become trapped in particular negative behaviors because of those beliefs. The beliefs are usually not true and are invalid. That is why the client is in trouble.

The therapist has the responsibility to assist the client in changing from believing in the absolutism of always being trapped and always feeling helpless, to recognizing that this isnít true and believing that change is possible. Challenging these beliefs is the basis of the change process and the reframing process. Reframing starts to occur during the initial interview, when information is given to the client, and when the client's questions are answered. It also occurs when the clinician starts asking the client questions to clarify the client's beliefs. This is all part of the process that we call "Waking State Reframing". All of this occurs prior to any formal hypnosis trance induction. The "change language" that is the language of hypnosis is used throughout this process.

In my work as a therapist and as a clinical psychologist, I use a variety of methods based on my assessment of the client. I would say that my primary theoretical orientation to doing counseling and therapy is Cognitive-Behavioral and multimodal (which means using multiple modalities and techniques drawn from different therapy schools). I incorporate clinical hypnosis as an adjunctive tool in my psychotherapy work with many clients because hypnosis makes treatment briefer, deeper and more effective.

Brief Cognitive Hypnosis & Psychotherapy is based on solid psychological concepts and principles. It emphasizes brief treatment and structured treatment where indicated. I operate from a positive frame of reference and assume that my clients are going to take a significant degree of responsibility for their treatment.

My focus in psychotherapy is first to understand you and to be able to formulate a conceptual framework for explaining your presenting problems and symptoms. I believe in fully informed consent and thus, want you, my client, to also understand my explanations and my rationale for using one intervention technique versus another.

In my work, I give a lot of attention to helping you understand your conscious thinking processes and underlying beliefs and attitudes. Frequently, people hold self-defeating beliefs and attitudes and think in ways that are not helpful. Psychotherapy and counseling involve identifying and changing unhelpful thinking patterns. However, in addition, I give a lot of credence to the role of the Unconscious or Subconscious in the formation and maintenance of symptoms, and in their alleviation. Hypnosis is an excellent tool for addressing and changing unconscious factors.

Ultimately, thoughts, feelings, and behaviors are all interconnected. We need to identify negative coping behaviors and change them for you to get better. In order to change negative coping behaviors, I employ my understanding of you in conjunction with appropriate techniques. These techniques include but are not limited to:

  • Behavior Therapy - techniques for reinforcing positive behavior change

  • Cognitive Therapy - confronting and challenging unhelpful thinking patterns

  • Waking State Reframing - helping you change the way you think about things consciously and unconsciously

  • Clinical Hypnosis - fixing positive change in place in the Unconscious (or Subconscious)

  • Imagery - using directed imagination, mental rehearsal and positive daydreaming to change perspective on negative experiences and to envision positive changes

  • Emotive techniques - to directly change negative feeling states and habits

  • Psychodynamic techniques - for inner conflict resolution

  • Family Therapy techniques - to resolve relationship problems in your family

In summary, I have learned through the years that clients get better when they succeed in changing the meaning of their beliefs that continue to propagate dysfunctional behavior. This includes helping the client change the way he or she thinks about himself or herself in relation to the problem. Ultimately, all psychotherapies have this as a goal. Their methods of achieving this vary.

Please be aware however, that most clients get stuck and it is my role as counselor/therapist to help you get unstuck. Good therapy is good therapy in most cases no matter what the competent therapistís theoretical orientation. It requires an experienced therapist who is well grounded, of psychologically sound mind, and well educated in the principles of psychology. You and your therapist have to form a stable and trusting relationship. Your therapist should be understanding and have empathy in addition to an impressive toolkit of techniques and knowledge.

In my work, I endeavor to connect with you in the quickest amount of time, to lay out our roadmap for healthy therapeutic change, and then roll up our sleeves and begin to work together to help you get better.

Brief Cognitive Hypnosis & Psychotherapy combines clinical hypnosis with counseling and psychotherapy to effect positive change in the shortest amount of time, to save you time and money, and to help you feel better as soon as possible. It is not a cookie cutter however. It is individualized and tailored to you as an individual. Very often problems can be resolved in one to five sessions. Verbal treatment contracts are established for five session units for more complex problems. When longer term interpersonal and personality change therapy are indicated, I work within a longer-term, relationship-based or interpersonal model, but I still endeavor to structure your therapy to make it as focused and as effective as possible.

Be well. Hope to hear from you if you need me.

Bruce N. Eimer, Ph.D.

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