NYC Psychotherapist Blog

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Sunday, April 4, 2021

How Parts Work Therapy Helps to Empower You

As an experiential psychotherapist, I use many different types of experiential therapy to help clients to move beyond the intellectual part of their mind to get to the deeper, more creative part. Being able to access their creative, intuitive mind allows clients to access their imagination in a way that helps them to bypass the emotional blocks that would normally hinder their progress in therapy (see my articles: The Unconscious Mind and Experiential Therapy: The Symptom Contains the Solution).

How Parts Work Helps to Empower You

How to Access a Deeper Part of Yourself Through Parts Work Therapy
One way to help you to access the deeper parts of yourself is through Parts Work (also known as Ego States therapy or Internal Family Systems).  

Parts Work helps you to understand that each of us is made up of a multiplicity of selves.  When I say "multiplicity of selves," I'm not referring to multiple personality disorder.  I'm referring to the concept that everyone's personality is made up of many different parts, which includes your unconscious mind.  

You might be aware of certain parts but not others, so Parts Work helps you to access those deeper parts of your personality to help you to be more creative, solve problems and resolve inner conflicts.   

Most people have had the experience of thinking, "A part of me wants to change, but another part of me doesn't."  This is often the way most people approach change, whether they're in therapy or not, because change can be challenging and there's a certain amount of ambivalence about making a change--especially a big change--even when they know that the change would be beneficial.

Most people have access to certain parts of their personality, but they have no awareness of other unconscious parts.  Once you discover the parts of your personality that you normally don't have access to, you can use those parts, even after you complete therapy, to be more creative in solving your problems (see my article: Discovering and Giving Voice to Unconscious Parts of Yourself).

What Does an Experiential Parts Work Therapist Do in Therapy?
A psychotherapist who does Parts Work acts as a facilitator to help you identify and develop the parts of your personality by helping you to:
  • Identify the various parts relevant to your problems.
  • Calling out the various parts.
  • Establish a rapport with the parts.
  • Discover the role of these parts.
  • Appreciate the role of these parts as it relates to your problems.
  • Negotiate an agreement between conflicting parts.
  • Integrate the parts together for an overall sense of wholeness and well-being.

The Uses of Inner Active Cards in Parts Work Therapy
Inner Active Cards, which were designed by Sharon Sargent Eckstein, are a set of 62 color illustrated cards (plus 10 blank cards to create your own images) that depict the inner life of the various parts you discover.

I have used Inner Active Cards with clients in Parts Work therapy sessions by allowing clients to choose cards from the deck that resonates with them.  Then, they use the cards they have chosen to say what's going on for the person illustrated in the card, discover and identify a similar part of themselves and learn to use this part to be more creative and solve their problems.

Many clients find the use of Inner Active Cards to be helpful to access the various parts of their personality that aren't immediately accessible to them.  These evocative cards are especially helpful for clients who have difficulty accessing their inner world.  

Inner Active cards can be used in therapy or on your own.  When these cards are used in Parts Work therapy, they help to bring clarity to the various parts of yourself and, with the help of your therapist, facilitate psychological transformation.

How Does Parts Work Therapy Help to Empower You?
  • The premise of Parts Work is that the power to change resides within you.
  • When you learn to access the various parts of your unconscious mind, you have a tool you can use even after you leave therapy.
  • You can use Parts Work for any problem you might have.
  • Once you learn how to access and negotiate with the various parts of yourself, your sense of self and self esteem improve and you feel empowered.
Getting Help in Therapy
People often discover that regular talk therapy helps them to be more insightful about their problems, but this intellectual understanding often doesn't bring about the change they want (see my article: Why Experiential Therapy is More Effective Than Regular Talk Therapy).

Experiential therapy includes Parts Work, Somatic Experiencing, AEDP, EMDR, EFT and clinical hypnosis, among other therapies.  

Rather than struggling on your own, you could benefit from working with an experiential therapist who can help you to overcome the obstacles getting in the way of your transformation.

About Me
I am a licensed NYC psychotherapist, hypnotherapist, EMDR, AEDP, EFT, Parts Work and Somatic Experiencing therapist (see my article: The Therapeutic Benefits of Integrative Therapy).

I work with individual adults and couples.

To find out more about me, visit my website: Josephine Ferraro, LCSW - NYC Psychotherapist.

To set up a consultation, call me at (917) 742-2624 during regular business hours or email me.

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