Individual therapy in RO DBT
In Radically Open Dialectical Behavior Therapy (RO DBT), individual therapy is a fundamental component of the treatment process, typically conducted on a one-on-one basis between an individual and a trained RO DBT Practitioner (Psychologists, Social Workers, Mental Health Nurses, and Counsellors).
During individual therapy sessions, individuals work closely with their practitioner to explore and address their specific overcontrol-related issues, such as emotional suppression, perfectionism, social difficulties, and inflexible thinking. The practitioner employs a dialectical approach, balancing validation and acceptance with change-focused strategies to help the client develop a more balanced and open way of functioning.
Key aspects of individual therapy in RO DBT include:
- Assessment: The RO DBT practitioner conducts a comprehensive assessment to understand an individual’s unique overcontrol tendencies, emotional challenges, and treatment goals.
- Target Identification: Together with the individual, the RO DBT practitioner identifies specific treatment targets related to overcontrol, emotional expression, social connection, and other relevant areas.
- Skill Building: Individuals learn a range of RO DBT skills and techniques tailored to their individual needs, including mindfulness practices, emotional regulation strategies, and social signaling skills to improve interpersonal effectiveness.
- Validation and Acceptance: The therapist provides validation and acceptance for the individuals’s experiences and emotions, helping them feel understood and supported.
- Behavioral Experiments: Individuals engage in behavioral experiments to test and challenge their overcontrol tendencies and learn to tolerate uncertainty and discomfort.
- Problem-Solving: The RO DBT practitioner collaborates with an individual to address real-life challenges and develop more flexible and effective problem-solving strategies.
- Homework Assignments: Individuals attending RO DBT are often given homework assignments to practice and integrate RO DBT skills into their daily lives.
- Progress Monitoring: Progress is continually monitored, and therapy is adapted as needed to ensure the client is making meaningful changes and achieving treatment goals.
Individual therapy in RO DBT provides a safe and supportive environment for individuals to work on their overcontrol-related issues, enhance emotional regulation, and develop the skills necessary for more fulfilling and balanced lives. It is typically complemented by skills training groups and other components of the RO DBT treatment model.
At our Essentia Health Clinics and DBT Clinics trained RO DBT Practitioners deliver the evidence-informed approach RO DBT that includes the eight (8) key aspects listed above as well as:
- Assessing Styles of Coping including the application of the Word-Pair Checklist
- Scheduling two individual sessions prior to the commencement of Skills Class
- The use of Chain Analysis and Diary Cards
- An approach that spans 30 individual therapy sessions
- Using RO DBT Scripts, Protocols, and philosophies