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Treating Clients with Personality Disorders: Enhance the Strengths, Not the Weaknesses

Daniel J. Fox, Ph.D.

We tend to spend the majority of our time in treatment focusing on our clients’ weaknesses. While this is an important part of treatment, it leaves out a vital part of our clients: their strengths.

When we overlook the client's strengths in our treatment plans, we treat only a portion of our client and unintentionally distance ourselves from treating the whole person.

Most individuals with a personality disorder come in with an overwhelming amount of weaknesses or areas of concern. As we progress in treatment we identify triggers and core content that promotes maladaptive patterns of behaviors that cause our clients to disrupt their lives. Bringing weaknesses into awareness should only be 10% of the treatment process; the other 90% is building on their strengths to overcome their weaknesses.

How can we ensure we highlight each patient’s strengths?

A worksheet has been created to help you work with your clients to identify their strengths. Download the worksheet - it has six strategies to help your client enhance their strengths in difficult situations. Next, watch the short video to learn the three categories of strengths. Understanding these categories will help you maximize your ability to identify and build upon your client's strengths.

Get 6 strategies to help your client enhance their strengths in difficult situations.




CE Seminar: Narcissistic, Antisocial, Borderline and Histrionic Personality Disorders: Intensive 2-Day Conference



Topic: Personality Disorders

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