Bethea Consulting & Psychological Services, P.C. - Seek change!
Clinician Toolbox
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Agenda Mapping: An agenda map can be useful to collaboratively identify treatment goals, give information, or create a "menu of options" with the client. 

Personal Value Card Sort: An exercise to help your client identify his or her most important values. This exercise can also be used to help your client be aware of actions that are consistent or inconsistent with closely held beliefs.

Some Characteristics of Successful Changers: Here is Bill Miller's list of characteristics of successful changers. This is a great sheet to help clients identify their personal strengths as building blocks in the process of change.

Types of Change Talk: A cheat sheet to help you identify client change language (a sign of motivation to change) when you hear it!


Below is a list of some of my favorite books that have helped to shape and inspire me as a therapist.

1. The Gift of Therapy: An Open Letter to a New Generation of Therapists and Their Patients
Author: Irvin Yalom

This book has been dear to my heart as a therapist for over 10 years.  I was introduced to this book as a Pre-doctoral Intern at a VA Hospital in East Orange, New Jersey.  I not only use this book as a reference for my clinical work with clients, but I also discuss this book with my supervisees as a guide for their own development as clinicians.  

Dr. Yalom offers many short chapters addressing topics including, how to work in the here-and now to enhance connection in treatment, and self-disclosure in a therapeutic manner.  The book includes the necessary self-care reminders (i.e., a chapter called "Give yourself time between patients").  This is the perfect clinical reference for a between-session booster!  This book always stays with me.

2. Motivational Interviewing: Helping People Change, 3rd Edition
Authors: William R. Miller and Stephen Rollick

What is Motivational Interviewing (MI)?  MI is an evidence-based method that has shown to be effective in fostering change--even for individuals who are ambivalent about changing or who are reluctant to change.  

This is an excellent resource for clinicians who are curious about MI.  In 2005, I started my journey in MI with the 2nd edition of the book as a Postdoctoral Fellow in New York City working on NIH-funded clinical trials testing novel MI interventions. I often refer to this book, as it includes updates to the theory and principles informed by research, and offers a quick reference to MI applications and other topics (i.e., integrating MI into service delivery, MI and ethics, etc.).

3. Ethnicity and Family Therapy
Editors: Monica McGoldrick, Joe Giordano, Nydia Garcia-Preto

I believe that all therapy is conducted within a cultural context, so this is one book that stays on my bookshelf.  This clinical reference offers information to promote culturally-sensitive clinical work with over 40 different ethnic groups!  

This is a great resource for therapists to build a framework for understanding a client's cultural background and unique cultural experiences, as well as how these impact help-seeking, coping, communication, coping, rapport building and change management.

4. Trauma and Recovery: The Aftermath of Violence--From Domestic Abuse to Political Terror
Author: Judith L. Herman

This book is one of my favorite resources for trauma work--and was especially helpful for me early in my clinical training.  This book provides an excellent theoretical framework for new therapists who what to better understand trauma, how it affects the brain, behavior, and one's emotional world.  Dr. Herman discusses various types of trauma, including domestic violence, sexual assault, military combat, and political terror.  

I have found Dr. Herman's book to be particularly helpful in learning how to connect with trauma victims.  This book also explains why memories and emotion are processed differently during traumatic experiences, which is helpful to explain the clients.  

Dr. Herman also reviews the stages of trauma work.  This book is a great resource for helping to establish a sense of safety in trauma work, to help clients better understand their reactions to trauma, and to help clients reconstruct their stories in the road to recovery.

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