Issue #18 (September 2015)

ISSN 2201-9529

The Neuropsychotherapist issue 18



Fear, one of the great drivers of human behaviour, is the topic of our first feature article this month. Drs. Elizabeth Johnston and Leah Olson teach students about the feeling brain—a subject that serves as the title of their new book exploring both the history of the psychological study of emotion and the neurobiology of these powerful forces. Johnston and Olson’s offering for us this month is a précis of the primary emotion of fear and the anxiety disorders that arise from it. I’m sure there would be little disagreement from psychotherapists that fear is often at the foundation of many psychological and somatic issues and is the lead character in many dramas played out daily in the lives around us. This article should be of great relevance to us all.

In keeping with the anxiety theme we also hear from Dr. Christopher McCurry, a clinical child psychologist in private practice in Seattle, who specializes in the assessment and treatment of childhood anxiety. He gives us a pragmatic overview of working with anxious children and their parents, developing the dance of attunement between child and caregiver toward greater resilience and affect control. There’s probably something to glean here for the dance that is the therapeutic dyad as well—I’ll leave that for you to decide.


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Drs. Johnston and Olson take a brief tour of the history of emotion research and into the current neurobiological understanding of these most powerful forces moving us to action. They throw the spotlight on fear and anxiety from their recent book The Feeling Brain.
Elizabeth Johnston and Leah Olson

Dr. McCurry outlines a simple yet powerful approach to developing parent-child interactions for greater coping and problem-solving abilities in the face of fear, anxiety and distress. The development of self-regulation for a child is fundamental for a resilient future. McCurry shares his experience to pave the way for this to happen.
Christopher McCurry


  • From the Editor: Matthew Dahlitz
  • Research: ADHD Research
  • Neuroscience: Exercise and Better Brains in Older Adults

39 pages

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