THE BIG PICTUREGiving mental health professionals the edge they need
We are your online source for news and information about the science of psychotherapy and the emerging field of Neuropsychotherapy and its community of professionals.
We aim to bring together researchers and practitioners in this multi-disciplinary field to share their latest findings and experiences.
The healing art of psychotherapy is underpinned by good science, and we want to present the very best of that science to you. Neuropsychotherapy is a practical recognition of the consilience between the sciences of our physical, mental and social lives – a “biopsychosocial” paradigm. Our hope is that you will find the news, reviews, and latest research from these complementary fields both engaging and helpful to your research and practice in this very exciting time.
We are also aiming to create an accessible and educational portal for the general public to promote what we believe to be a highly practical and effective perspective on mental health care.
Please contact us if you are involved in any area associated with neuropsychotherapy and would like to submit material for publication on this website.
What Is It?
Neuropsychotherapy is a meta-framework taking into account the dynamic interplay between the mind, body, society, and environment upon well-being. By understanding the mechanisms of our biology/neurology, the processes of our psychology, and the influences of social interaction, it is believed a holistic therapeutic practice can be formulated.
Who Are You?
We are professionals in mental health (either an eclectic or founded in any number of theoretical schools) who utilises neurobiological, cognitive, emotional, social, and environmental information to base or enhance our psychotherapeutic interventions. We use the term “Neuropsychotherapist” to identify professionals who are grounded in a sound knowledge of the neurobiological underpinnings of mental states and behaviours of their clients.
To find out more about the people who put this platform together click here.
Is This A School?
No. The Neuropscyhotherapist is not proposing a new school of psychology or psychotherapy, nor a new modality of practice. Rather we are promoting a greater depth of knowledge in the workings of the brain, and other aspects of our biology, to enhance the therapeutic practice of all psychotherapists regardless of their theoretical orientation.
“Neuropsychotherapy aims to change the brain, but it does not directly target primarily the brain but focuses on the life experiences encountered by the person. The brain specializes in the processing of life experiences. Life experiences are meaningful with regard to the needs that are embedded within the brain structures of each human being. Neuropsychotherapy strives to shift the brain into a state that enables these basic needs to be fully satisfied. The best method for improving the health of the brain, then, is to ensure basic need satisfaction.” (Grawe, 2007, p. 424)
The definition of Neuropsychotherapy may seem broad, but that is precisely the point. Armed, for example, with microscopic insight into the activity of a particular neural network involved with a clients fear, as well as a macroscopic view of their interpersonal relationships and environment, gives the neuropsychotherapist a thorough grasp of the clients situation. With the knowledge that there is a dynamic and powerful influence between the mind, brain, people, and environment, the eclectic clinician can choose from a large palate of therapeutic practices to achieve a desired outcome without being philosophically shackled to one approach. Similarly the therapist who holds dear to a particular school will find valuable insight into a clients conditions by understanding with more clarity what’s ‘under the hood’, so to speak, in the neurology and biology of the client, and possibly refine the therapeutic approach with this new understanding.
This does mean, however, that the therapist must have a multidisciplinary approach to study, analysis, and possibly intervention. It does not mean the therapist need explain to clients their condition in terms of neurology and chemistry (although some clients may benefit from such explanations), but that a depth of understanding does exist by the professional who is dealing with the extreme complexities of a fellow human. We would like to propose that the Neuropsychotherapist is one who works within a biopsychosocial paradigm toward holistic therapy, with an increasing depth of knowledge of all these levels of our being.
For an overview of Neuropsychotherapy, see Grawe, K. (2007). Neuropsychotherapy: How the Neurosciences Inform Effective Psychotherapy. New York, Psychology Press. The late Klaus Grawe defines Neuropsychotherapy as a neuroscientifically informed psychotherapy, and we stand on this foundational understanding while enlarging the scope of considerations to a broader biopsychosocial perspective.