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Internal Family Systems (IFS)

Internal Family Systems Therapy was introduced to me in 2009 by Janina Fisher on my Level 1 Sensorimotor Training.

Richard Schwartz has pioneered this therapy in the US for 40 years. He proposes like Carl Jung, that we are all multiples.  ‘A part of me wants to stop smoking, a Part of me never wants to stop’.

IFS is a Gentle yet Powerful Therapeutic model that works to heal pain and trauma from the past, that affects us in our present. Day.  

This approach brings hope and is non-pathologising.

Richard Schwartz, developed Internal Family Systems in response to clients descriptions of experiencing different parts, many extreme – within themselves.  He came across this again and again, ‘People have Parts’.  ‘A part of me feels angry and another feels ashamed’ etc.  ‘A Part of me wants to drink/gamble/eat, but I don’t want to, it's like I just can’t control the impulse’.

He proposes that we are all multiples and through his 40 years of experience he has developed, Internal Family Systems (IFS) method.  It is a way to understand our internal system and help us transform and heal. IFS is based on the principle that there is an undamaged, resourceful self at the core of every person and that accessing and working with that self is a safe, effective way to heal other, hurt parts of the mind and body.

He has successfully used this method to heal extreme and Complex Trauma.

“If one accepts the basic idea that people have an innate drive towards nurturing their own health, this implies that, when people have chronic problems, something gets in the way of accessing inner resources.  Recognising this, the role of the therapist is to collaborate…”  Richard Schwarz, founder of IFS.

IFS Therapy is now posted on NREPP as an evidence-based practice.

NREPP is the National Registry for Evidence-based Programs and Practices, a national repository that is maintained by the U.S. government’s Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).

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