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Holistic Psychotherapy: Treating the Whole Person

6 CE Credit Hours - Online Course - $59.00

Developed by David Van Nuys, Ph.D.

This course is also offered as part of Certificate Program in Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) 29 CE Credit Hours

Course materials: text/webpage Articles    audio Audios

Transcripts are available for ALL MP3s in pdf format.

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MP3 Introduction to course by David Van Nuys, Ph.D.


General Course Description

Increasingly, psychotherapists are recognizing that we cannot separate the mind and body in treatment, and that adopting a holistic perspective leads to more effective modes of psychotherapy. Exercise, proper nutrition, hypnosis and other relaxation techniques, EMDR and acupressure all support the notion that psychological disorders and their treatment involve a complex interaction between mind and body. Yet psychology has also seen its share of quackery and fads, and so it is also important to employ critical thinking, utilize treatments that have solid empirical support and make sure that practitioners are trained well and qualify to perform the modalities they employ.

This introductory level course consists of 6 podcasts. Section One provides an overview of integrated mental health by psychologist Rubin Naiman, PhD. Section Two describes a variety of integrated treatments for such conditions as depression, anxiety, insomnia, trauma, and maternal-infant attachment disorders. Podcasts by Bill O'Hanlon, MS, LMFT, David Feinstein, PhD, and Tony Madrid, PhD describe such modalities as EMDR, Ericksonian hypnotherapy and energy therapies. Section Three presents a podcast by researcher and scholar, prolific author and critique Scott Lilienfeld, PhD describing how to employ critical thinking in sorting out the differences between science and pseudoscience, why it is important to distinguish between the two, and how to tell which is which. Additional resources and references are provided for further study, but they are not part of the course.

Disclaimer: This course is purely educational and does not intend to serve as a license (or permission) to mental health professionals to prescribe or practice any of the approaches discussed in this course unless they fall within the scope of practice of your profession. Check with your licensing board about the scope of practice of your profession to make sure you practice within that scope. It also does not serve as a permission to title yourself in any specific way.

Educational Objectives

This course will teach the participant to:

1.    Identify the principles and practices of integrated mental health.

2.    Discuss non-medication alternatives to treating depression.

3.    Describe the principles of Ericksonian hyponotherapy.

4.    Discuss the principles of solution-focused therapy.

5.    Compare and contrast science and pseudoscience

6.    Discuss the connections between poor maternal-infant bonding and physical and psychological disorders.

Course Syllabus

Understanding integrated mental health

  • Principles
  • Practicing integrated mental health
  • Treating anxiety, insomnia and other disorders
  • The relationship between chronic inflammations and mental disorders

Treating depression

  • Hope
  • Relationships
  • Physical and mental exercises


  • Repairing maternal-infant attachment
  • Trauma and other disorders
  • Hypnotherapy in conjunction with solution-focused therapy
  • Ericksonian perspective and principles of hypnotherapy

Additional Alternative Approaches

  • Principles and practice of energy therapy
  • Acupressure

Science and pseudoscience – Critique of Pseudoscience

  • Principles of good science
  • Employing critical thinking in psychotherapy
  • Warning signs of pseudoscience
  • The dangers of pseudoscience in psychotherapy
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