ACA Blog

  • Jaime Castillo

    Multicultural Counseling: Experiences from Saudi Arabia

    • Jaime Castillo
    Jun 07, 2012
    May 11, 2012 11:45pm Location: Somewhere over the Atlantic I'm on my way to Saudi Arabia. We are a couple hours into our 12 hour direct flight from New York to Riyadh and as I boarded the plane a few hours ago I was experiencing excitement, anxiety, and fear. My colleagues and I are the keynote presenters at a conference for clinicians, administrators, and direct care staff who work with individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities (ID/DD). Over the last two years, our agency has developed a growing number of partnerships with small organizations within Jordan and Saudi Arabia to provide education and training to staff within the ID/DD field.
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  • Ray McKinnis

    Beware! The Behavior We Stroke is the Behavior We Get!

    • Ray McKinnis
    Jun 07, 2012
    We counselors have an almost impossible challenge: we have to facilitate a client into more functional and satisfying behavior patterns within a system that strokes dysfunctional behavior. From the very first, clients come to us (or are sent to us) because they are (or someone else is) dissatisfied with some aspect of their functioning—this very act is a process in which dysfunctional behavior results in lots of attention—lots of strokes. We as counselors are challenged to help them develop other behaviors which are more functional in getting strokes, all the time giving them attention because they have a problem. People don’t come to us because they are happy or successful or satisfied with their relationships or job or life in general—those sources of strokes that make individuals ‘winners’.
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  • Bob Walsh and Norm Dasenbrook

    Private Practice: Taking a Risk

    • Bob Walsh and Norm Dasenbrook
    Jun 06, 2012
    Risk taking…we encourage our clients to consider taking a risk, pushing the envelope, being assertive, to think creatively and sometimes to risk failing. Ever said, “When one door closes another one opens”? Wonderful suggestions, but do we take our own advice? How comfortable are we in trying something new, getting outside our comfort zone or seeing failure as acceptable? Sometimes, not so much.
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  • Megan Broadhead

    At the End of My Comfort Zone

    • Megan Broadhead
    Jun 06, 2012
    Neale Donald Walsch said, “Life begins at the end of your comfort zone”. This quote is plastered on my refrigerator as a daily reminder of where I’ve been and where I’m going.
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  • Doc Warren

    Seeing your name on an obituary, seeing it on a headstone…

    • Doc Warren
    Jun 05, 2012
    When I was born there were three Warren Corson’s in the same town; my Grampy moved away a few years later leaving two in town and one in Maine. When I was a teen my son was born, making four Warren’s, three of which lived in the same house for about a decade; now there are only two. Grampy died a few years ago, I keep one of the brass bullet cases from his military funeral. My dad passed last September a matter of days before his birthday. He never saw retirement age.
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  • Christian Billington

    An Insatiable Hunger

    • Christian Billington
    Jun 04, 2012
    It was going to be a tough case. During intake, the client had been particularly resistant to any sort of disclosure. To be honest, given his tight-lipped demeanor, I was not really sure why he sought therapy. His unwillingness to do more than moan and just sit there expressionless, near-catatonic, dead to the world, made me believe something was not as it seemed and there were deeper issues at play.
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  • Nicole Michaud

    Who am I? Most days I hardly know

    • Nicole Michaud
    Jun 04, 2012
    It all began with labor pains and a drive through a severe snowstorm on New Years Eve of 2008. I went with my husband to the hospital and was admitted to begin the most extraordinary 36 hours of my life. I endured more than I ever thought possible and tapped into a well of strength within myself I did not know existed. I was pushed past any limit I had previously envisioned for myself. It was the most incredible and powerful I have ever felt before in my life.
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  • Deb Legge

    Marketing or Building your Private Practice – Which Comes First?

    • Deb Legge
    Jun 04, 2012
    I’ve always wanted to paint a room, but I’ve never painted a room in my life. I think about the painting the ceiling first and think, “what if I get it just right and then mess it up when I do the walls?” I think about painting the walls first and think, “what if I get these just right and then ruin it when I paint the ceiling?” As a result, I’ve painted the mantle. I’ve painted a deck. I’ve admired other people’s beautifully painted rooms. But I’ve still never painted a room in my life.
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  • Andrea Holyfield

    Goals vs Resolutions

    • Andrea Holyfield
    Jun 04, 2012
    Instead of resolutions I encourage clients to establish goals. While resolutions are blanket statements delivered to the universe with no plan of action, no reference and no structure of measurement, SMART goals are Specific, Measureable, Attainable, Realistic and Time bound. Let's examine each component.
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  • Debbie Carter

    Feeling Emotions

    • Debbie Carter
    Jun 04, 2012
    In my most recent work with a 6 year old girl who has all the signs and symptoms of PTSD, I’ve recently been reminded of the power of feeling. Many adults in this child’s world view the times when she experiences a trauma trigger as ‘bad behavior’. It was on one of these days when her grandmother brought her to session carrying the behavior plan which she had been given at school. Grandma took a few minutes to explain the new behavior plan to me, and during this time I observed my client’s mood change from excited and happy to embarrassed, as she covered her face and began to cry softly.
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