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"This book will provide therapists with the tools necessary to help their clients differentiate themselves from their parents, families of origin, and other influences that have unconsciously dominated and predetermined their lives. The authors argue that most of us are unaware of the extent to which our lives have been predetermined and pre-empted by a parent whose thoughts, beliefs, and feelings can actually be antagonistic to our own goals and desires. An integrative theoretical approach to personality development and human behavior is introduced, providing the foundation for an innovative cognitive-affective-behavioral therapeutic process centered around Firestone's Voice Therapy technique"--
How much of our identity or 'self' is truly representative of our own wants, needs, and goals in life and how much does it reflect the desires and priorities of someone else? Are we following our own destiny or are we unconsciously repeating the lives of our parents, living according to their values, ideals, and beliefs? In this thought-provoking book, noted clinical psychologist Robert Firestone and his co-authors explore the struggle that all of us face in striving to retain a sense of ourselves as unique individuals. The self is under siege from several sources: primarily pain and rejection in the developmental years, problems in relationships, detrimental societal forces, and existential realities that affect all people. Through numerous case studies and personal stories from men and women who participated in a 35-year observational study, the authors illustrate how voice therapy, a cognitive/affective/behavioral methodology pioneered by Firestone, is used to elicit, identify, and challenge the destructive inner voice and to change aversive behaviors based on its prescriptions. The theory they describe integrates the psychodynamic and existential approaches underlying voice therapy and is enriched by research findings in the neurosciences, attachment research, and terror management theory (TMT). An important addition to the area of personality development theory, The Self under Siege offers a new perspective on differentiation and the battle to separate ourselves from the chains of the past. It provides psychotherapists and other mental health professionals with the tools needed to help clients differentiate from the dysfunctional attitudes and toxic personality traits of their parents, other family members, and harmful societal influences that have unconsciously dominated their lives. This book will have a special appeal to clients and, in fact, to any person interested in his/her own personal development
A tale inspired by the U.S. AIDS epidemic in the 1980s follows the experiences of individuals torn by devastating losses and political upheavals whose perspectives on tolerance and love are also irrevocably shaped by awareness of what might have been.
What keeps people from living in ways that satisfy their individual needs and priorities? This book explores psychotherapist Robert W Firestone's voice therapy technique, the goal of which is to uncover these limiting forces, which are represented by internal messages or voices. Firestone maintains that from childhood, people are prevented from experiencing an individuated life by the pressures of society, particularly the nuclear family. He expounds the theory, which synthesizes psychodynamic and existential approaches, behind his technique. He demonstrates how the therapy helps clients reveal these voices quickly, recognize their source and begin to take a path to a meaningful life.
Many people grapple with destructive thought processes or a "critical inner voice" that directs their behavior and, to varying degrees, limits their lives. Using deeply personal and very human stories based on his own clinical practice, noted psychologist Robert W. Firestone illustrates the struggles of his clients to give words to this "enemy within," and in the process overcome its damaging influence. These revealing and captivating stories offer glimpses into the uniquely human relationship that develops in the therapeutic encounter and demonstrate the powerful impact that the experience has on both client and therapist. Dr. Firestone is the originator of a therapeutic method called "Voice Therapy," by which clients learn to identify the language of the defense system and eventually separate their own point of view from its harmful effects. Each story provides an intimate look into one person's life, illuminates aspects of his or her "dark side," and highlights an important insight into the therapeutic process. This sensitively written book will evoke emotional responses in readers, and inspire them to take action to challenge the dictates of their own inner critic. Taken together, these stories underscore the distinctive merits and continuing relevance of the therapeutic process, especially in our distracted, technological world increasingly detached from feeling. From the Trade Paperback edition.
Collective violence changes the perpetrators, victims, and societies in which it occurs. It targets the body, the psyche, and the socio-cultural order. How do people come to terms with these tragic events? This groundbreaking collection of essays by anthropologists, psychologists and psychoanalysts, drawing on field research in many different parts of the world, profits from an interdisciplinary dialogue. Providing provocative, at times deeply troubling, insights into the darker side of humanity, it also proposes new ways of understanding the terrible things that people are capable of doing to each other.
Author, artist, and clinical psychologist Robert W. Firestone and collaborator Joyce Cattlet dig deep into the psychology of destructive behavior--both its source and how it manifests itself in personal relationships between men, women, couples, and families, and in the social arena. They posit that if we can understand the source of aggressiveness and learn to cope with the urges it impels, we can better rear future generations and improve mental health practices in general. This position offers a hope of altering what many people consider to be humankinds's basically unethical nature.

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