Biofeedback Counseling Center
Enhancing the Healer Within
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IFS Therapy

 Enhancing the Healer Within


IFS Therapy

We all have deep within us a non-judgmental Core Self that has the characteristics of calm, confidence, compassion, courage, curiosity, connectedness, and clarity. Ideally, the Core Self is the Captain of our human ship, and leads us through life in consultation with our various parts.  When the Core Self is at the helm, we experience ourselves as “Being in the Flow” and experience a sense of joyful spontaneity.  Everything seems connected and effortless. 

 We also have “Parts” that are either protectors or exiles, helping us to live our lives and make sense of experiences. 

The parts called Exiles are vulnerable combinations of thoughts and feelings that we pick up through life such as feeling Unlovable, or feeling like a Failure, or feeling Bad in some way.  When feelings from these vulnerable exiles surface it is painful and difficult.  Therefore, our Manager protector parts work overtime to keep us from feeling those feelings ever again by such means as keeping us busy or away from memories. When our Exiled feelings do come up, our other protectors, the Firefighters, jump right in.  Firefighters could be in the form of Drinking, Binge Eating, Anger, Changing the Subject, Addictions, or anything that will push the Exiles and their feelings away. 

Richard C. Schwartz, PhD, author of the book, You Are the One You’ve Been Waiting For, discovered this phenomenon by listening to his clients as they described their inner lives made up of many parts almost like a family within. He developed the Internal Family Systems Therapy (IFS) as a deep way of understanding our inner lives and healing the vulnerable exiles.  IFS has been a remarkable tool for thousands of people for inner healing and for life enhancement, and self empowerment.  Many report more calm, joy, confidence, a connectedness with others, and self compassion, all qualities of the Core Self.

IFS therapy has been useful for persons with PTSD, depression, divorce, anxiety, perfectionism, addictions, and other symptoms.  IFS therapy combined with Emotionally Focused Therapy are especially good for improving relationships.  Many couples have found a greater connection after IFS Couples Therapy. 

“IFS is more than just a therapeutic technique, it is a conceptual framework and practice for developing love and acceptance for ourselves and each other.” Richard C. Schwartz, PhD