Counseling, Coaching, Psychology, Therapy

Mindfulness and DBT: “What” Skills

on August 9, 2014

Dr. Kathleen Young: Treating Trauma in Tucson

As promised yesterday, I am writing today more about the specifics about the use of mindfulness in trauma treatment. If you think about it, mindfulness is really the antithesis of dissociation, with its focus on being present in this moment and “training your mind to pay attention to what you choose to pay attention to instead of letting your mind hijack you.” (Cindy Sanderson, Ph.D., Mindfulness for Clients, their Friends, and Family Members). Although dissociation was a life-saver for you as a child living amidst trauma, we’ve talked before about understanding how it may be getting in your way as an adult.

In Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT), mindfulness is broken down into six specific types of skills. The first three are referred to as “what” skills in Marsha Linehan’s Skills Training Manual for Treating Borderline Personality Disorder (1993). So you want to practice mindfulness, what exactly do you…

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