On self-therapy

Although I had a ten-year career as a therapist, I have long been and still am a radical believer in self-therapy – because it’s worked wonders in my life and I’ve seen the same in others.  It’s also a lot cheaper than going to a therapist – though it often requires a huge amount of self-motivation, self-confidence, and self-guidance.

In this self-therapy section, where I share both short and longer essays, I address such subjects as grief, ways to speed up the healing and maturity path, the pain inherent in growth, confrontation of parents, and dream analysis.

I also offer some critical essays in this section, because I’m not a proponent of all forms of self-help.  For instance, I’m very critical of self-help groups like Alcoholics Anonymous and Al-Anon, even though I recognize that at certain points in people’s lives even they can be helpful.  (For instance, I went to Al-Anon for a good while and it really helped me, until I outgrew it in a big way and needed to move on — and then realized how cultish it could be.)

In this section I also offer an in-depth critique of Elnora Van Winkle, the creator of Redirecting Self Therapy, because members of my website’s past bulletin board were interested in her work and asked me to study it.

Shorter Essays on Self-Therapy

Longer Essays on Self-Therapy

And Finally:

5 thoughts on “On self-therapy

  1. I’m considering ending therapy for reasons you point out. My question is can I actually heal childhood trauma without a therapeutic relationship?
    My nightmares are very significant to me as I’m seeing a theme in them. My dreams tell me that the trauma is ready to be expelled from my subconscious.
    My therapist doesn’t “do dreamwork” what??? Also she feels I’m not prepared to do trauma work. How dare anyone question my strength or resiliency. I feel I have the motivation and insight to heal without a therapist telling me I’m not ready.
    Your thoughts would be appreciated
    Diane

    • hi diane – you asked: “My question is can I actually heal childhood trauma without a therapeutic relationship?”

      i have two thoughts here. the first is that my attitude (for myself) has always been, well, it’s worth a try!! that’s really the only way to find out.
      the second thought is that the ultimate therapeutic relationship is the one with one’s own self anyway…….not with an external therapist…….. loving for and caring for and respect and parenting oneself is a big inner job….. an external therapist can in some cases help that, but ultimately it’s up to us as individuals to really work at it……..whether there’s an external therapist in the picture or not…..
      that’s my two cents 🙂 all the best, daniel

  2. Daniel,
    Thank you so much for validating what I already know. So much of what you’re written is what I’ve been contemplating for some time now.
    I stopped going to AA four years ago because of the very reasons you describe…I wasn’t fully aware of that until now.
    I’m seeing a psychologist currently and have been questioning her methods and lack of motivating me to explore my trauma and heal.
    She simply tells me I’m not capable of doing that you. Who is she to decide?
    I have been ready for a long time and your writings have given me that motivation.
    Thank you for your honesty. It’s a soul saver.
    Diane

      • Thanks Daniel! You’re readings have alleviated any fear of truly embarking on my journey.
        After 56 years of hell…nowhere to go but up.
        I’m actually excited about the process. Instead of dread and fear of the unfamiliar..I’m considering this to be an adventure. I look forward to more of your essays.
        Diane

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