Friday, November 5, 2010

Prescription for Change...and Acceptance

As I have mentioned, I am currently (and very slowly) working through this Dialectical Behavior Therapy workbook.

And things are changing rapidly for me thanks to this incredible modality -- more rapidly than I ever could have imagined.  In that last two weeks alone, I have utterly changed how I approach my emotional disregulation and I have become aware of my thoughts in a way that I have never experienced.

Yoga has definitely prepared me for this type of work as my "witness" consciousness has been trained a bit, and DBT uses mindfulness training to the max, but something has clicked in place for me recently that was not happening before.

So what is Dialectical Behavior Therapy all about?

The psychologist Marsha Linehan created it, realizing that cognitive behavior therapy was not really working for her patients who were diagnosed as either BPD or Complex PTSD (and as I have pointed out, many believe these two may pretty much be the same thing).

Linehan realized that with cognitive behavior therapy there was so much emphasis on change that it left these patients, in particular, feeling defeated -- and judged.  BPD patients, especially, have a hard time staying in therapy.

So Linehan redesigned cognitive behavior therapy with a new focus.  Instead of focusing on change, DBT therapists strive to balance change with acceptance.

We work to change the behaviors that bring about pain and grief while at the same time radically accepting ourselves for who we are, accepting that we've been doing the best that we knew how, accepting that how we are was a logical response to what we've experienced.

Seems obvious, right?  But not so much for those of us who have spent most of our lives doubting our existence, our sense of self, our right to be here, breathing air.

I'll be writing more about what I'm learning.

But...what would your life look like if you could accept yourself as you are?  If you could see yourself as the beautiful, lovable human being you already are?


LauraX said...

Christine, I am so grateful that you have found a healing approach that is working for you...LOVING OUR WHOLENESS is where I am residing these days too...all the broken-beautiful-and-truly-dark-difficult- pieces of who we are make up the wholeness our BEING.

I wish for you refuah shelema-complete healing-body-mind-heart-soul

YOU are such and inspiration...I feel so honored and blessed to have met you here in blogland.

gentle steps

Claudia Olivos and Sergio OlivosM said...

gentle steps indeed Christine.
as you know I have followed you for these last few years-as we both have taken steps towards increasing light and love.... you are on a good path.
not always an easy one, but always a good one... courage my dear friend! for we are lovely beings indeed!
I love YOUR wholeness as I daily battle to love MINE.....


Anonymous said...

Hi Christine!

I am excited for you to write more about your experiences with practicing mindfulness with this book. I have been diagnosed with both BDP and complex PTSD about 7 years ago. I am currently reading, 'Wherever You Go, There You Are' by Jon-Kabat Zinn and loving the mindfulness meditation CD of his, that I downloaded online.
I love reading your blog. It is one of the few blogs that I check regularly. It feels so good to not be alone. And you inspire me!
Take care.

Anonymous said...


svasti said...

...what would your life look like if you could accept yourself as you are? If you could see yourself as the beautiful, lovable human being you already are?

To be honest, I'm not entirely sure!