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How early infant-parent interactions can explain adult social and emotional relationships. Combining theories of neurobiology, interpersonal relationships, and intrapsychic concepts, this book explores the importance of attachment. Hart addresses children's normal development and relational disorders and presents an integrated therapeutic approach that takes attachment issues into consideration. Complex neurobiological and behavioral theory are transformed into protocols that can be easily implemented by the practicing clinician.
Born out of the excitement of a convergence of ideas and passions, this book provides a synthesis of the work of researchers, clinicians, and theoreticians who are leaders in the field of trauma, attachment, and psychotherapy. As we move into the third millennium, the field of mental health is in an exciting position to bring together diverse ideas from a range of disciplines that illuminate our understanding of human experience: neurobiology, developmental psychology, traumatology, and systems theory. The contributors emphasize the ways in which the social environment, including relationships of childhood, adulthood, and the treatment milieu change aspects of the structure of the brain and ultimately alter the mind.
A revised edition of the best-selling text on how relationships build our brains. As human beings, we cherish our individuality yet we know that we live in constant relationship to others, and that other people play a significant part in regulating our emotional and social behavior. Although this interdependence is a reality of our existence, we are just beginning to understand that we have evolved as social creatures with interwoven brains and biologies. The human brain itself is a social organ and to truly understand being human, we must understand not only how we as whole people exist with others, but how our brains, themselves, exist in relationship to other brains. The first edition of this book tackled these important questions of interpersonal neurobiology—that the brain is a social organ built through experience—using poignant case examples from the author’s years of clinical experience. Brain drawings and elegant explanations of social neuroscience wove together emerging findings from the research literature to bring neuroscience to the stories of our lives. Since the publication of the first edition in 2006, the field of social neuroscience has grown at a mind-numbing pace. Technical advances now provide more windows into our inner neural universe and terms like attachment, empathy, compassion, and mindfulness have begun to appear in the scientific literature. Overall, there has been a deepening appreciation for the essential interdependence of brain and mind. More and more parents, teachers, and therapists are asking how brains develop, grow, connect, learn, and heal. The new edition of this book organizes this cutting-edge, abundant research and presents its compelling insights, reflecting a host of significant developments in social neuroscience. Our understanding of mirror neurons and their significance to human relationships has continued to expand and deepen and is discussed here. Additionally, this edition reflects the gradual shift in focus from individual brain structures to functional neural systems—an important and necessary step forward. A great deal of neural overlap has been discovered in brain activation when we are thinking about others and ourselves. This raises many questions including how we come to know others and whether the notion of an “individual self” is anything more than an evolutionary strategy to support our interconnection. In short, we are just beginning to see the larger implications of all neurological processes—how the architecture of the brain can help us to better understand individuals and our relationships. This book gives readers a deeper appreciation of how and why relationships have the power to reshape our brains throughout our life.
A book for clinicians and clients to use together that explains key concepts of body psychotherapy. The body’s intelligence is largely an untapped resource in psychotherapy, yet the story told by the “somatic narrative”-- gesture, posture, prosody, facial expressions, eye gaze, and movement -- is arguably more significant than the story told by the words. The language of the body communicates implicit meanings and reveals the legacy of trauma and of early or forgotten dynamics with attachment figures. To omit the body as a target of therapeutic action is an unfortunate oversight that deprives clients of a vital avenue of self-knowledge and change. Written for therapists and clients to explore together in therapy, this book is a practical guide to the language of the body. It begins with a section that orients therapists and clients to the volume and how to use it, followed by an overview of the role of the brain and the use of mindfulness. The last three sections are organized according to a phase approach to therapy, focusing first on developing personal resources, particularly somatic ones; second on utilizing a bottom-up, somatic approach to memory; and third on exploring the impact of attachment on procedural learning, emotional biases, and cognitive distortions. Each chapter is accompanied by a guide to help therapists apply the chapter’s teachings in clinical practice and by worksheets to help clients integrate the material on a personal level. The concepts, interventions, and worksheets introduced in this book are designed as an adjunct to, and in support of, other methods of treatment rather than as a stand-alone treatment or manualized approach. By drawing on the therapeutic relationship and adjusting interventions to the particular needs of each client, thoughtful attention to what is being spoken beneath the words through the body can heighten the intimacy of the therapist/client journey and help change take place more easily in the hidden recesses of the self.
The rich, complex theory of affect regulation boiled down into a clinically useful guide. Affect regulation theory—the science of how humans regulate their emotions—is at the root of all psychotherapies. Drawing on attachment, developmental trauma, implicit processes, and neurobiology, major theorists from Allan Schore to Daniel Stern have argued how and why regulated affect is key to our optimal functioning. This book translates the intricacies of the theory into a cogent clinical synthesis. With clarity and practicality, Hill decodes the massive body of contemporary research on affect regulation, offering a comprehensible and ready-to-implement model for conducting affect regulation therapy. The book is organized around the four domains of a clinical model: (1) a theory of bodymind; (2) a theory of optimal development of affect regulation in secure attachment relationships; (3) a theory of pathogenesis, in which disordered affect regulation originates in relational trauma and insecure attachment relationships; and (4) a theory of therapeutic actions targeted to repair the affect regulating systems. The key themes of Hill’s affect-focused approach include: how and why different patterns of affect regulation develop; how regulatory patterns are transmitted from caretakers to the infants; what adaptive and maladaptive regulatory patterns look like neurobiologically, psychologically, and relationally; how deficits in affect regulation manifest as psychiatric symptoms and personality disorders; and ultimately, the means by which regulatory deficits can be repaired. Specific chapters explore such subjects as self states, mentalization, classical and modern attachment theory, relational trauma (and its manifestations in chronic dissociation, personality disorders, and pervasive dissociated shame), supporting self-development in therapy, patient–therapist attunement, implicit and explicit therapeutic actions, and many more.
A collection of groundbreaking research by a leading figure in neuroscience.
An attachment specialist and a clinical psychologist with neurobiology expertise team up to explore the brain science behind parenting. In this groundbreaking exploration of the brain mechanisms behind healthy caregiving, attachment specialist Daniel A. Hughes and veteran clinical psychologist Jonathan Baylin guide readers through the intricate web of neuronal processes, hormones, and chemicals that drive—and sometimes thwart—our caregiving impulses, uncovering the mysteries of the parental brain. The biggest challenge to parents, Hughes and Baylin explain, is learning how to regulate emotions that arise—feeling them deeply and honestly while staying grounded and aware enough to preserve the parent–child relationship. Stress, which can lead to “blocked” or dysfunctional care, can impede our brain’s inherent caregiving processes and negatively impact our ability to do this. While the parent–child relationship can generate deep empathy and the intense motivation to care for our children, it can also trigger self-defensive feelings rooted in our early attachment relationships, and give rise to “unparental” impulses. Learning to be a “good parent” is contingent upon learning how to manage this stress, understand its brain-based cues, and respond in a way that will set the brain back on track. To this end, Hughes and Baylin define five major “systems” of caregiving as they’re linked to the brain, explaining how they operate when parenting is strong and what happens when good parenting is compromised or “blocked.” With this awareness, we learn how to approach kids with renewed playfulness, acceptance, curiosity, and empathy, re-regulate our caregiving systems, foster deeper social engagement, and facilitate our children’s development. Infused with clinical insight, illuminating case examples, and helpful illustrations, Brain-Based Parenting brings the science of caregiving to light for the first time. Far from just managing our children’s behavior, we can develop our “parenting brains,” and with a better understanding of the neurobiological roots of our feelings and our own attachment histories, we can transform a fraught parent-child relationship into an open, regulated, and loving one.

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