As a Psychologist in Morristown and New York City, I have been working with an approach to psychotherapy that is best described as integrative and relational.
For me, an integrative approach to psychotherapy has several different, equally important meanings. One meaning of integrative refers to the idea that to function at our best, we all need a healthy integration of how we handle our feelings, our thoughts, our behaviors, and our body’s physiological reactions to life events. Difficulties integrating any of these areas into our lives – how we experience and express our emotions, whether or not we think clearly and problem solve effectively, whether we behave in self-defeating instead of in self-affirming, productive ways, or whether our bodies betray us by responding negatively to past or present life events – can result in us feeling a wide range of symptoms, and experiencing difficulties in relationships, work and enjoyment of life. My integrative approach to psychotherapy does not assume that you have problems in all of these areas. Rather, I will encourage you to build on strengths that you already have, while developing new awareness, skills, and sense of competence in the areas where you’ may have been having difficulties.
A second meaning of integrative refers to the range of therapeutic approaches that I integrate into the treatment. Because no one type of psychotherapy is proven best for all people and all problems, I use a combination of psychodynamic, cognitive-behavioral, and mind-body approaches to treatment that allows the therapy to be tailored to your particular needs. For some people, I may use primarily a cognitive-behavioral focus to address problems with stress reduction, communication skills, anger or anxiety management, alcoholism and other addictive behaviors. In other cases, where there may be long-standing issues such as unresolved past traumas, or repetitively unsatisfying relationships, treatment might involve us working through issues from the past – a more psychodynamic approach – combined with developing new cognitive and behavioral tools for the present. And for many, an increased awareness of how our bodies may have become constricted or overwhelmed by past or present life events becomes an important part of freeing ourselves to live more emotionally open, healthy and satisfying lives.
Regardless of what therapy approach is best suited for you, I strongly believe that for therapy to be successful, it needs to take place in a safe environment in which the quality of relationship between you and me is of the greatest importance – more important even than whatever “techniques” might be used. I always endeavor to create and maintain an open, honest, respectful relationship in which any and all issues can be freely discussed. And where appropriate, I may also encourage you to include other modalities – such as a psychiatric consultation for medication, or the participation in a self-help group, or involvement in a health maintenance program – as part of the overall treatment plan.
Joshua Zavin, Ph.D. Licensed Psychologist in Morristown, NJ
Dr. Joshua Zavin, Psychologist in Morristown, NJ. Treating Individuals and Couples for issues with depression, anxiety, anger, stress, PTSD, marriage counseling and relationship problems, alcoholism and other addictions, ACOA issues.
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