TEDx Therapy Of Tomorrow talk by JFL

My Therapy Of Tomorrow TEDx talk at University College Dublin, December 2017
Permalinks: https://jfl.com/therapyoftomorrow or https://youtu.be/lo4DPYYQrGc

Therapy Of Tomorrow is an ongoing collaborative project. Do get in touch if you would like to participate in its co-creation. Media enquiries here.

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#6 – Relational & Interdisciplinary Thinking with Abeba Birhane & JFL

In this sixth episode of the bodymindself™ podcast psychologist and cognitive scientist John Francis Leader (JFL) meets cognitive science researcher Abeba Birhane (Twitter, Blog) to discuss the topics of relational & interdisciplinary thinking.

The bodymindself™ podcast, newly launched in 2017, is an ongoing series of conversations between JFL and others on the topics of applied psychology and cognitive science, experiential learning, perception, virtual and mixed reality, embodiment, mental processes and identification.

The aim of the series is to include the voices of people from very diverse backgrounds, ranging from academia to those working on the frontline in applied fields, with the hope of gaining an even greater systematic understanding of the topics being explored. All references and views expressed are those of the person who expressed them and not necessarily those of JFL.

Your comments, shares, likes and dislikes are very welcome and will help guide future discussions. To stay up to date follow on Twitter, subscribe on SoundCloud or iTunes and visit jfl.com

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References

  1. UCD Cognitive Science Programme
  2. The cruel and unusual phenomenology of solitary confinement,Gallagher
  3. Psychology and the American ideal, Sampson
  4. Victor of Aveyron
  5. Noam Chomsky
  6. Ludwig Wittgenstein
  7. Lev Vygotsky
  8. Maria Montessori
  9. UCD School of Computer Science
  10. Insight Centre for Data Analytics
  11. The Extended Mind, Andy Clark & David Chalmers
  12. Abeba Birhane’s Blog
  13. Abeba Birhane on Twitter

Your comments, shares, likes and dislikes are very welcome and will help guide future discussions. To stay up to date follow on Twitter, subscribe on SoundCloud or iTunes and visit jfl.com

#5 – Self & Volition with Professor J. Scott Jordan & JFL

In this fifth episode of the bodymindself™ podcast psychologist and cognitive scientist John Francis Leader (JFL) meets Professor J. Scott Jordan to discuss the topics of self and volition, or conscious will.

J. Scott Jordan’s research focuses on volition and its relationship to consciousness. He received his PhD in cognitive psychology and the neurophysiological basis of perception at Northern Illinois University in Dekalb, Illinois in 1991. His dissertation addressed the relationship between voluntary eye-movements and spatial perception. In 1992 he was awarded an Alexander von Humboldt Post-doctoral Fellowship and spent a year in Prof. Dr. Hans Kornhuber’s neurophysiology lab at the University of Ulm in Germany studying the relationship between event-related brain potentials and memory and attention.

In 1998-1999 he spent a year at the Max Planck Institute for Psychological Research in Munich, Germany studying the relationship between action planning and spatial perception, and in 2006, spent a semester as a Scholar-in-Residence at the Center for Interdisciplinary Research at the University of Bielefeld in Germany working in a research group entitled, “Embodied Communication in Humans and Machines.” He is currently the Chair of the Department of Psychology at Illinois State University in Normal, Illinois where he is also Director of the Institute for Prospective Cognition (my.ilstu.edu/~jsjorda/Institute…ive_Cognition.html), which he founded in 2008.

His empirical research continues to focus on the relationship between spatial perception and action planning, with an increasing emphasis on social influences. He also investigates social perception during interaction and the manner in which these social dynamics influence perceived similarity, use of stereotypes, and desire to reengage. His theoretical work (i.e., Wild Systems Theory) focuses on moving scientific psychology away from the current computational-ecological debate, toward an integrated framework that conceptualises organisms as embodiments of the phylogenetic, cultural, social, and developmental contexts from they emerged and in which they sustain themselves.

The bodymindself™ podcast, newly launched in 2017, is an ongoing series of conversations between JFL and others on the topics of applied psychology and cognitive science, experiential learning, perception, virtual and mixed reality, embodiment, mental processes and identification.

The aim of the series is to include the voices of people from very diverse backgrounds, ranging from academia to those working on the frontline in applied fields, with the hope of gaining an even greater systematic understanding of the topics being explored. All references and views expressed are those of the person who expressed them and not necessarily those of JFL.

Your comments, shares, likes and dislikes are very welcome and will help guide future discussions. To stay up to date follow on Twitter, subscribe on SoundCloud or iTunes and visit jfl.com

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Special Thanks

Special thanks to Dr. Fred Cummins for arranging the podcast and talk and for filming the talk, and to University College Dublin for hosting the podcast and talk.

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References

  1. Born to be Wild: Faust, Pinocchio and the Marlboro Man meet the Embodied Other
  2. Michael Oakeshott
  3. Being There by Andy Clark
  4. Olympic vault set too low
  5. Wild Systems Theory
  6. Dynamical Systems Theory
  7. Illinois State University profile
  8. Psychonomic Society profile

Your comments, shares, likes and dislikes are very welcome and will help guide future discussions. To stay up to date follow on Twitter, subscribe on SoundCloud or iTunes and visit jfl.com

#4 – Gaming & Virtual Reality with Nikki Lannen & JFL

In this fourth episode of the bodymindself™ podcast psychologist and cognitive scientist John Francis Leader (JFL) meets game developer and virtual reality specialist Nikki Lannen to discuss what’s happening in gaming and the implications of virtual reality.

Nikki Lannen @nikkilannen is the founder and CEO of Warducks @War_Ducks warducks.com, a Dublin based Virtual Reality Studio, and the creators of Sneaky Bears. WarDucks’ mission is to build quality and fun games and experiences for Virtual Reality devices with a special goal of being the most people-centric game development studio in the world.

The bodymindself™ podcast, newly launched in 2017, is an ongoing series of conversations between JFL and others on the topics of applied psychology and cognitive science, experiential learning, perception, virtual and mixed reality, embodiment, mental processes and identification.

The aim of the series is to include the voices of people from very diverse backgrounds, ranging from academia to those working on the frontline in applied fields, with the hope of gaining an even greater systematic understanding of the topics being explored. All references and views expressed are those of the person who expressed them and not necessarily those of JFL.

Your comments, shares, likes and dislikes are very welcome and will help guide future discussions. To stay up to date follow on Twitter, subscribe on SoundCloud or iTunes and visit jfl.com

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References

  1. Job Simulator game
  2. HTC Vive
  3. Samsung Gear VR
  4. Oculus Rift
  5. Brian Upton
  6. Sneaky Bears game
  7. Sneaky Bears Rollercoaster game
  8. Pokemon GO
  9. Pokemon GO on the bodymindself™ podcast
  10. Keith Barry in the Brookhaven Experiment
  11. Gamification
  12. Mobile Agents game
  13. Enterprise Ireland
  14. 3Dcamp virtual reality meetup group
  15. Virtual Reality Ireland Facebook group
  16. Warducks website
  17. Warducks on Twitter
  18. Warducks on Facebook
  19. Nikki Lannen on Twitter

Your comments, shares, likes and dislikes are very welcome and will help guide future discussions. To stay up to date follow on Twitter, subscribe on SoundCloud or iTunes and visit jfl.com

#3 – Self Defence & Experiential Learning with Patrick Cumiskey & JFL

In this third episode of the bodymindself™ podcast psychologist and cognitive scientist John Francis Leader (JFL) meets self-defence instructor and peak performance specialist Patrick Cumiskey to discuss self defence and learning by doing.

Patrick Cumiskey is the chief instructor of Krav Maga Ireland and a psychotherapist whose work places a particular emphasis on peak performance psychology and mental toughness. He has trained over 30,000 people in Ireland including members of the Ranger Wing, Defence forces and Gardai as well as training United Nations Units preparing for deployment.

Patrick was personally trained by the chief Instructor of Krav Maga Global Eyal Yanilov. Prior to qualifying as a Krav Maga Instructor in 2001 Patrick had qualified as 3rd Black Belt in American Kenpo. Patrick is also a certified Jeet Kun Do Instructor. He has trained as a Gracie Combatives instructor in the Gracie Academy in Los Angeles, USA and has undertaken extensive training with Navy Seal and other American Special Forces trainers. Find out more at kravmagaireland.com or patrickcumiskey.com.

The bodymindself™ podcast, newly launched in 2017, is an ongoing series of conversations between JFL and others on the topics of applied psychology and cognitive science, experiential learning, perception, virtual and mixed reality, embodiment, mental processes and identification.

The aim of the series is to include the voices of people from very diverse backgrounds, ranging from academia to those working on the frontline in applied fields, with the hope of gaining an even greater systematic understanding of the topics being explored. All references and views expressed are those of the person who expressed them and not necessarily those of JFL.

Your comments, shares, likes and dislikes are very welcome and will help guide future discussions. To stay up to date follow on Twitter, subscribe on SoundCloud or iTunes and visit jfl.com

* * *

References

  1. The upside of stress
  2. Eustress: a helpful stress
  3. The importance of play
  4. Krav Maga on The Simpsons
  5. Thick Face Black Heart
  6. Efficacy of a Sexual Assault Resistance Program
  7. Emotional climate
  8. Killology, Bulletproof Mind
  9. The gift of fear
  10. Protecting the gift: keeping children and teenagers safe
  11. The benefits of playing video games
  12. Fallout video game
  13. The philosophy of Stoicism
  14. The ‘Dunning Kruger’ effect
  15. Punishing slackers and do-gooders
  16. The Zeigarnik effect
  17. Shock and awe tactics
  18. The OODA loop
  19. Carol Dweck on improvement
  20. Othering
  21. The online disinhibition effect
  22. Incomplete Nature
  23. A Beautiful Constraint
  24. Thinking, Fast and Slow
  25. Sully and the Hudson
  26. Willpower
  27. Dr. K. Anders Ericsson
  28. 12 stages of intimacy
  29. Foot in the door technique
  30. Ken Robinson on creativity
  31. Maslow’s hierarchy of needs
  32. Freeletics
  33. Batman’s fear of bats
  34. The Tools
  35. The War of Art
  36. The pendulum effect
  37. Happiness from experience, not things.
  38. patrickcumiskey.com
  39. kravmagaireland.com

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Your comments, shares, likes and dislikes are very welcome and will help guide future discussions. To stay up to date follow on Twitter, subscribe on SoundCloud or iTunes and visit jfl.com

The intersubjectivity and intrasubjectivity of applied therapeutic sense-making

Written for and presented to the Intersubjectivity and its commitments conference at University College Dublin on 13/03/17

Listen to the audio introduction of this topic on SoundCloud

View this article on Academia.edu or ResearchGate


Intersubjectivity

In a simplistic presentation intersubjectivity might be viewed as the social relationship between individuals. A deeper analysis shows that the coupling of individuals may lead to an extension of the capability of either participant and often to emergent properties that would not, up until that point, be possible for either subject by themselves. An even more thorough exploration shows that, in the right circumstances, some of these emergent properties or those of the other can be retained by a subject when subsequently decoupled. It is this form of intersubjectivity which was important in Lev Vygotsky’s (1896-1934) work and which forms the basis of the zone of proximal development [1].

Intrasubjectivity

Through both childhood and later development certain characteristics of others, and society as a whole, become internalised for the subject. These characteristics may be explicitly taught to a subject in declarative form – i.e. ‘group X are good and group Y are bad’ – or dispositions may develop through a series of encounters which serve as premises for a given conclusion – i.e. touching fire more than once and getting burnt each time. To the extent that the worldview formed agrees with the facts of the matter in a given moment, it is adaptive; but importantly this adaptivity may favour social context over technical fact – i.e. it may be that holding a view that the earth is flat is useful if hungry at a flat earth believers’ convention. Of interest are occasions when more than one perspective on the same topic become internalised within a given subject. These intrasubjective parts, voices, or perspectives may at times be in conflict: the internalised intersubjective voice, for example, of one parent encouraging prompt action, and that of the other parent urging hesitancy and caution.

Applied therapeutic sense-making

The applied therapeutic process, whether formally – as is the case with internal family systems approaches [2], voice dialogue therapy [3] or parts therapy [4] – or informally in the case of just about any other methodology [5], typically becomes a mediation ground for these internalised perspectives. As with any good mediation session, the therapist/mediator had best not start with an assumption that any particular perspective is the correct or incorrect one (even if that were the case it would be a conclusion better arrived at through the process). Typically the therapeutic process sheds light on the fact that differing points of view – even diametrically opposing ones – are no more incongruous than a car equipped with both an accelerator and a brake. Whilst the functions of these components are in opposition, by design they nonetheless are subsystems of an overall purpose (safe vehicular progress). In serving to temper each other they promote the aim of the other – i.e. having a brake facilitates faster driving and having an accelerator leads to less reluctance stopping. This type of mutually supportive yin and yang type counterbalance of the intrasubjective, derived originally from the intersubjective, tends to make that subject a more integrated intersubjective participant in the social systems in which they form a component part and so the cycle continues.

References

  • Vygotsky, L. S. (1980). Mind in society: The development of higher psychological processes. Harvard university press.
  • Schwartz, R. C. (1997). Internal family systems therapy. Guilford Press.
  • Stone, H., & Stone, S. (2011). Embracing Our Selves: The Voice Dialogue Manuel. New World Library.
  • Hunter, R. (2005). Hypnosis for Inner Conflict resolution: Including parts therapy. Crown House Publishing.
  • Dryden, W. (2007). Dryden’s handbook of individual therapy. Sage.

Styles of Therapy & Training

I’m regularly asked what the difference is between various approaches to therapy. There can be a lot of overlap between approaches but I’ve put this brief guide together in the hope it will show some of the key differences between approaches. If you’d like to see anything added then just let me know.

Coaching

Coaching emphasises getting clear on your goals, breaking them down into actionable steps and being accountable for achieving taking them. More >

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, or CBT, is a popular approach to working with troublesome patterns of thought or behaviour in a structured way. More >

Counselling

Counselling provides space for the client, with the therapist’s support, to work through difficulties in a safe and supportive environment. More >

Hypnotherapy

Hypnotherapy emphasises the role of the subconscious mind and utilises the power of the imagination to help in developing better ways of thinking, feeling and acting. More >

Mediation

Mediation is a process for understanding the perspective of different people or ways of thinking with the aim of finding common ground that is mutually beneficial. More >

Meditation

Meditation is the practice of quietening the mind by stepping back from the busyness of day to day life and the often constant train of thoughts. More >

Medication

Prescription medication is used in cases where symptoms are severe to help bring about ease making it possible to engage in therapy and make practical positive changes. More >

Mindfulness

Mindfulness is the act of being present in the moment and engaging more fully with what you are experiencing often leading to a greater sense of control and ease. More >

Psychoanalysis

The Psychoanalytic process recognises the influence of the unconscious mind in day to day life and seeks to bring about balance by exploring the hidden motives of behaviour. More >

Psychiatry

A Psychiatrist is a medical doctor who is licensed to prescribe medication and who will typically diagnose and assess as well as provide therapy. More >

Psychology

A Psychologist is someone who studies human mental and physical behaviour and who may also be a practitioner of therapy or a consultant or trainer. More >

Psychotherapy

The term Psychotherapy refers to any of  number of psychological therapies that assist clients in gaining insight and making positive changes in their lives. More >

Training

Training approaches focus on equipping you with practical skills – such as the ability to set goals, be healthier or communicate more easily – to improve your quality of life. More >

A Guide To Change

Sometimes change can be easy, other times a little harder, but either way the following tips will help ensure that you are moving steadily in the right direction.

1) Decide that you want to change

This is one of the single most important parts. When you reach that point where you’ve committed to yourself that things will be different it can be amazing the momentum that follows.

2) Clarify what you want to change

You probably have a sense of what the problem is but what is the end goal, and what are the actions that need to be taken to get you to where you want to be?

3) Take immediate action

Now is the perfect time to get started. Sure you mightn’t be able to do everything in any given moment but there’s normally something that you can do and many small steps lead to covering a lot of ground.

4) Get support

We’re not in it alone and support is available from many sources: friends, family, support groups, online resources and the assistance of a skilled therapist are just a few options.

5) Review your progress

If you’re checking in with yourself and noticing how you’re doing you’ll be able to benefit both by seeing what you’re doing well but also by seeing what isn’t working so you can modify your approach.

Stress relief

STRESS stress STRESS stress STRESS stress…

Stress, if you think about it, is an engineering term.

Stress is created by pressure being concentrated against a particular point. The different solutions that are used to make sure this doesn’t cause problems when building are very similar to the options available to you when managing stress in your own day to day life. They include:

  • Reduce the load

No doubt you are a very capable person but could you take on 5% more than what you’re already doing? What about 10% more? Could you do twice what you’re already doing? We all have a cut-off point where we have to be realistic and take on less. The question is have you already passed that point- if so then consider prioritising what’s most important.

  • Distribute the force

Did you know that the heel of a stiletto shoe exerts more force than the foot of an elephant? That’s because it’s all concentrated in a small area. The same happens with stress in life and a good solution, if you can’t reduce the load, is to spread it out. This can be done by finding better ways of getting things done: for example have a simple list each day of what needs to get done in order of importance rather than trying to remember. Support from others can also make a huge difference: many people will be happy to help you and you could consider helping them with things they find difficult but you find easy in return as we all have different strengths.

  • Release the pressure

Even if you do your best to avoid taking on more than you should, and get as much support as possible, it’s normal to still get a bit stressed from time to time. You could say that everyone gets stressed sometimes, but the difference is that people who are relaxed know this and remember to let it go and release that stress so that it doesn’t build up and become a problem. Physical activity makes a huge difference, even just a little bit each day, and other relaxing options include taking a bath, spending time in nature, doing art, time with animals and meeting friends. Also recommended are mindfulness, meditation and hypnotherapy as pleasant ways of bringing yourself back into the present moment and letting go of any tension.

Direct suggestion

simpsons navy QMO6PTy

Above: Direct suggestion. Sometimes we don’t need to try to be too clever and it may be enough to clearly and directly present an idea. An advantage that therapeutic uses of mixed reality typically have over other uses of influential media is the buy-in of the participant in wanting to make change happen [‘The Simpsons’ (1998) 20th Century Fox].