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Beyond the Systems Paradigm

by Luciano L'Abate

This monograph owes its origins to the decades-old proposal by David Bakan (1968) about the duality of human experience. He proposed that community and agency would be two necessary and sufficient constructs to classify and to encompass most human relationships. This dichotomy has been found to be valid by a variety of contributions over the last half a century (L'Abate, 2009; L'Abate, Cusinato, Maino, Colesso, & Scilletta, 2010). Additionally, the purpose of this book is to argue and assert that two important fields of psychology, family and personality psychologies, if not already dead are conceptually, empirically, and practically moribund. They are being superseded respectively by perhaps more appropriate, perhaps more specific, and more likely verifiable concepts and constructs, such as intimacy and identity. The traditional family still conceived as composed by two parents and two children of different gender is esponsible for only one fourth of all domiciles in USA. Singles, same-sex couples, and completely different family organization complete the remaining 100%. Difficulties in defining what is personality require a change in perspective and advance toward a comprehensive theory of human relationships that can and should fulfill requirements necessary to achieve an undoubtedly grandiose and ambitious universal status.

Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy as a Science

by Luciano L'Abate

This book demonstrates how clinical psychology and psychotherapy practices may reach a scientific level provided they change the three basic paradigms that have controlled those practices in the last century. These three, now outdated, paradigms, are: (1) one-on-one (2) personal contacts (3) through talk. These paradigms have served well in the past but they are no less helpful in the current digitally focused world.

Hurt Feelings: Theory, Research, and Applications in Intimate Relationships

by Luciano L'Abate

Hurt feelings are universal and are present in human beings as well as in animals. These feelings are usually avoided by human beings and overlooked by the scientific and professional mental health communities. Yet, if unresolved and not shared with loved ones and professionals, they tend to fester in our bodies and effect our functioning. If not expressed and shared with caring others, anger, sadness and fear are at the bottom of mental illness. Developmentally, each of these feelings respectively gives rise to antisocial acts, depression and severe mental illness. This book suggests that instead of traditional one-on-one, face-to-face, conversation-based interventions, distance writing will allow mental health professionals to assign interactive practice exercises specifically focused on hurt feelings.

Models of Psychopathology

by Luciano L'Abate Lisa M. Hooper Laura G. Sweeney Giovanna Gianesini Peter J. Jankowski

This book explores current relational models of psychopathology that undergird a great many conflicts and destructive outcomes in family and intimate relationships. These models have similar features and can be considered as a group. They are all: (1) generational; (2) relational; and (3) fundamentally reactive processes stemming from existing psychopathology.

Paradigms in Theory Construction

by Luciano L'Abate

Within the field of psychology there is a proliferation of paradigms, theories, models, and dimensions without an underlying conceptual framework or theory. This conclusion has been reached by representatives of many different psychological specialties. In response to this inconsistency this book presents a hierarchical framework about important theoretical issues that are present in psychological thinking. These issues concern definitions of three major theoretical concepts in theory and practice: (a) paradigms, (b) theories, and (c) models. It focuses on defining, comparing, and contrasting these three conceptual terms. This framework clarifies differences among paradigms, theories, and models, terms which have become increasingly confused in the psychological literature. Paradigms are usually confused with theories or with models while theories are confused with models. Examples of misuses of these terms suggest the need for a hierarchical structure that views paradigms as conceptual constructions overseeing a variety of psychological theories and verifiable models.

Relational Competence Theory

by Luciano L'Abate Claudia Scilletta Mario Cusinato Walter Colesso Eleonora Maino

Relational competence--the set of traits that allow people to interact with each other effectively--enjoys a long history of being recorded, studied, and analyzed. Accordingly, Relational Competence Theory (RCT) complements theories that treat individuals' personality and functioning individually by placing the individual into full family and social context. The ambitious volume Relational Competence Theory: Research and Mental Health Applications opens out the RCT literature with emphasis on its applicability to interventions, and updates the state of research on RCT, examining what is robust and verifiable both in the lab and the clinic. The authors begin with the conceptual and empirical bases for the theory, and sixteen models demonstrate the range of RCT concerns and their clinical relevance, including: - Socialization settings for relational competence. - The ability to control and regulate the self. - Relationship styles. - Intimacy and negotiation. - The use of practice exercises in prevention and treatment of pathology. - Appendices featuring the Relational Answers Questionnaire and other helpful tools. Relational Competence Theory both challenges and confirms much of what we know about the range of human relationships, and is important reading for researchers, scholars, and students in personality and social psychology, psychotherapy, and couple and family counseling.

Self-Help in Mental Health

by T. Mark Harwood Luciano L'Abate

They're fast, cheap, and promise amazing results--no wonder more people seek mental health advice from self-help books and sites rather than seeking therapy. Complicating this picture: many resources are inappropriate, ineffective, even dangerous. For the clinicians who would gladly recommend self-help for their clients, the challenge is finding reliable, evidence-based sources of help among the vast quantities available. Self-Help in Mental Health: A Critical Review guides readers through this plethora of materials, organizing it into useful order, evaluating popular approaches and trends, and recommending clinically valid, science-based resources for specific clinical and sub-clinical problems. Its authors explain how and why such methods work, offering innovative uses for self-help in prevention and promotion, therapy and rehabilitation, including strengthening therapeutic gains (akin to homework in cognitive-behavioral therapy) and encouraging self-reliance. While some may be tempted to write-off all self-help as quackery or therapy-lite, Harwood and L'Abate recognize the potential the self-help movement holds for countering the stigma associated with mental health treatments. Further, self-help resources represent a viable means of reaching under-served populations, and, for some individuals, they are preferable to conventional therapy. Included in the coverage: Recommendations for books, web sites, organizations, support groups, hotlines, and audio-visual materials, depression, anxiety, eating disorders, addictions, and other conditions, guidelines for evaluating self-help and guided self-support materials, strategies for integrating self-help with traditional modes of therapy, assessment tools for determining client appropriateness for self-help, new directions in theories of self-help and self-change, contraindications for self-help approaches. Concise and comprehensive, Self-Help in Mental Health is timely reading that will enhance the work of psychotherapists and family and couples therapists, as well as researchers in clinical psychology, psychiatry, and other mental health fields.

Sourcebook of Interactive Practice Exercises in Mental Health

by Luciano L'Abate

As a primary or an adjunct mental health therapy, written practice exercises have proven an effective, low-cost way for clients to transfer gains made in therapy to the challenges of daily life and relationships. These interactive workbooks expand on earlier self-help and distance writing methods along a continuum of healing approaches, from the proactive and preventive to the therapeutic and rehabilitative. But despite their appeal, large-scale access to high-quality materials hasn't always been readily available--until now. The Sourcebook of Interactive Practice Exercises in Mental Health gives professionals a library of replicable, evidence-based, clinically robust protocols and workbooks for a broad range of clinical and non-clinical conditions, suitable for individuals, couples, and families. Luciano L'Abate places practice exercises in the context of current mental health and technological advances, offering guidelines for administration, helpful case studies, and caveats for those new to this type of intervention, and features a wealth of complete protocols in these major areas: psychological disorders from the DSM-IV, including depression, anxiety, phobias, and PTSD, couple and family concerns, from intimacy to domestic violence to children's adjustment to divorce, lifelong learning: assertiveness, emotional competence, social skills, and more, family support skills: preparation for marriage, parenthood, and adoption´, plus exercises derived from widely-used psychological tests (e.g., the Beck Depression Inventory, the MMPI), behavior lists, and others. Clinical psychologists, mental health professionals, and psychotherapists will find the Sourcebook of Interactive Practice Exercises in Mental Health a therapeutic treasure chest filled with new approaches to intractable issues or unreachable clients, new means of viewing typical problems, even new ways for talk therapy to work with words.

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