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Working with traumatic memories: KISS (keep it simple, stupid) and the virtues of straightforward prolonged exposure

"Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication."  Leonardo da Vinci

"It seems that perfection is reached not when there is nothing left to add, but when there is nothing left to take away."  Antoine de Sainte Exupery 

I have just written a series of three posts on Arntz & Jacob's new book "Schema therapy in practice"  This led to a query about when we should use direct exposure to trauma memories, when introduce more deliberate cognitive restructuring of linked trauma beliefs, and when add in more complex rescripting as, for example, described by Arntz & Jacob?

BABCP spring meeting: Nick Grey on memory-focused approaches in CBT for adults with PTSD - other applications (5th post)

Last month I wrote a series of four blog posts about a CBT workshop on memory-focused for adults with PTSD (and a couple of posts about a personal experience of trauma).  The third of these posts discussed how this kind of memory-focused approach could also be helpful for other types of "non-PTSD" trauma such as experiences of grief & loss.  In today's post I want to explore this extended application even further - looking at the use of memory-focused therapy for anxiety & depression, personality disorders, and complex type II trauma.

Walking in Skye & Kintail: lessons, self-compassion & posttraumatic growth

Still less than three days since the most intense, prolonged, potentially catastrophic experience of my life.  What have I learned ... both personally and as a therapist?  Gratitude ... of course.  Gratitude to the mountain rescue service, gratitude to my wife & family & friends, gratitude for my health, for the extraordinary beauty of this world, for being able to walk, to breath, to smile.  And gratitude can even help me process what happened better

Walking in Skye & Kintail: mountain rescue, helicopter winches, and avoiding death & PTSD

It's really early, and paradoxically I should be sleeping beautifully because I'm in a comfortable room at the Sligachan Hotel on the Isle of Skye.  However I'm not too fussed - acute sleep deprivation may well affect memory consolidation and reduce the risk of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) following trauma.  And why the possible PTSD?

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