People sometimes find it useful, when choosing a therapist, to know something about the therapist's psychological perspective. What follows is a brief description of mine.
My psychological perspective can be described as following a biological/psychological/social model. Biological, psychological, spiritual/existential matters, cultural circumstances, political, social, economic phenomena, etc. are all important. I have a basic assumption that change is possible. We live in dynamic interactive tensions in and among our inner world of sensations, thoughts, feelings, desires, emotions, biology, activities and needs, and the outer world of demands, circumstances, influences and chance. There is much opportunity for change.
My professional training had early central grounding in Adlerian psychology. Adler emphasized interpersonal experience and development, situational determinants of behavior and the building and maintenance of self-image. His concepts used language often appealing to the general public: feelings of inferiority and insecurity, sibling rivalry, compensatory behavior, unity of the person and generally included a positive approach to humankind and behavior. Adler saw all behavior as being immediately determined by events occurring within the skin, with the crucial internal determinants being values, attitudes, interests and ideas. Adler believed that the perception of, thoughts about, and interpretation of events are the critical antecedents of behavior. Adlerians believe behavior is goal-oriented and somehow integrated, organized and dynamic. Even when our behavioral responses seem incongruent to the individual or an objective observer, they are actually interrelated and mutually consistent in some fashion. Behavior cannot be understood outside its social and developmental contexts.
Another major influence to my psychological perspective has been family systems theory. My licensure presently includes both, a licensure as a practicing psychologist and as a marriage and family therapist. Both of these professional identities are important to me. My perspective is to always remember that even when I am working with an individual, the individual must be seen in not only cultural/social context, but also any changes affected through that contact can also affect the family, work environments and other related systems. I am interested in intrapsychic, internal family systems—our "subpersonalities" that interact and change in many of the same ways that families or other human groups interact and change. I am focused on how parts of a person may polarize another part of the person, creating both destructive and helpful inner alliances.
One way I focus on such forces is by using techniques in Pesso/Boyden System Psychomotor Therapy (PBS/P)—another influence on my perspective. PBS/P's origins are from the work of Al and Diane Pesso, and is a system of psychotherapy that has evolved over approximately the last 30 years. I have been involved with PBS/P since 1977, having numerous psychomotor workshop experiences with Al Pesso, who co-founded PBS/P along with his wife, Diane Pesso.
PBS/P has evolved into a system of psychotherapy that attempts emotional re-education with cognitive integration. The "psycho" part of psychomotor refers to the psyche, the psychological mind. The "motor" part refers to bodily sensations and movements - soma. The motoric component includes the possibility of blocked actions as well. PBS/P principles and my psychological perspective have a generally good fit:
1) Humans have a developmental drive to satisfy basic psychological needs.
2) Experiences are holistically processed by the psyche and the body.
3) Fundamental change is possible and PBS/P emphasizes positive outcomes.
4) The role of the therapist is to follow and facilitate the natural processes of healing in the client.
5) The core of the human being, the essential self or soul, has an earthly "this world" sanctity.
Existential philosophies have had profound influences on the development of my psychological perspective. Generally, existentialism holds that the primary problem of existence is to find oneself and be oneself - to find meaning and purpose in life. Framed as such, the human is not a being, rather, the human is coming into being, becoming and emerging. The individual can make a contribution and think and act creatively because behavior draws upon personal experience and personal awareness of innate potentialities. Existentialism translates to a psychological perspective in its quest for understanding of human kind through investigating the human condition and examining the most essential characteristic of humans; awareness of self (existence) and self-directed, goal-oriented striving (continual becoming).
Human developmental perspectives are strong throughout my work. This includes working with human sexuality issues, whether they are trauma-related wounds needing healing or enhancing satisfaction in the physical, emotional and spiritual deep connections possible in healthy sexual intimacy.
These perspectives influence how I design treatment and growth approaches to fit the people I see. Therapy modalities from my skills, training and life experiences are chosen to fit you personally.
Bob MacCaughelty has been a psychologist and marital and family therapist in private practice in Charlotte since 1980. His undergraduate work was at Duke University. His master's degree in Clinical Psychology is from Lone Mountain College in San Francisco. He has a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from The Fielding Institute. His research interests are in the field of psychological stress. His practice is a general one of individual, couple, family and group psychotherapy and evaluations of adults, adolescents and children.
Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from The Fielding Institute, M.A. in Clinical Psychology from Lone Mountain College, B.A. from Duke University
Background / Experience:
30 Years in Private Practice; 5 Years in Community Mental Health Center
Professional Interests / Specialties:
- Helping people change patterns that interfere with life satisfaction, including mental disorders and problems in living
- Working with high-conflict family and marital problems
- Diagnosing and helping adults and adolescents manage ADD/ADHD
- Private and confidential sexuality therapy
- Addiction, codependence and boundary violation recovery
- Providing consultations and psychological evaluations to mental health professionals and lawyers
- Brief therapy, crisis intervention and/or stable, reliable deep change individual and group therapy
- Helping people build skills for spiritual and existential growth
- EMDR - using AIP (Accelerated Information Processing) as a treatment
- DNMS - Developmental Needs Meeting Strategy
- TRM - Trauma Resiliency Model
- Integrative use of cranial electrotherapy stimulation (alpha-stim), biofeedback, non-needle acu-detox for pain, depression, PTSD and addiction
- American and North Carolina Psychological Associations
- American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy
- American Orthopsychiatric Association