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What We Treat

Our clients seek help for a diverse range of issues. These can include, but are not limited to, challenges in interpersonal communication and marriage, sexual concerns, stress, unhappiness, depression, panic attacks, phobias, mood swings, addictions, and other conditions that significantly impact their daily lives.

Each treatment is unique and based on the individual’s needs, goals, and comprehensive assessment. 

Interpersonal Relationship Counseling

Many of our patients seek to build meaningful relationships, yet they often face obstacles such as anger, guilt, resentment, distrust, and emotional turbulence. Most of these challenging emotions are linked to one critical issue: the struggle with effective communication. This applies to romantic relationships and connections with friends, family members, and coworkers.

We believe that effective communication is a skill that can be mastered given the right guidance and a willingness to learn! 

Message-Based Psychology (MBP) was initially developed to improve interpersonal communication. It views emotions as tools for nonverbal communication, crucial in establishing relationship dynamics, including power balances and boundaries. This perspective has led to significant advancements in relationship improvement. Subsequently, we realized the profound impact of interpersonal relationships on mental health, leading to the integration of MBP into psychotherapy.

We offer interpersonal relationship counseling for individuals, families, and couples. Additionally, we provide training for corporate managers to effectively navigate diverse personalities and cultural expectations in their professional interactions.

Anger Management

Contrary to the widespread belief that views anger as solely destructive, we at the Advanced Psychology Institute see it as a multifaceted emotion with the potential to be both healthy and necessary.

The concept of anger management is often oversimplified. Common perceptions suggest that anger is solely negative, a source of problems, and a destroyer of relationships, leading to the belief that we must control it, release it safely, breathe deeply, and count to ten. Yet, at the Advanced Psychology Institute, we understand anger as more than a mere disruptor. It serves as a vital, healthy response in certain circumstances, signaling issues that demand attention or boundaries needing establishment.

Our approach to anger management involves understanding the root causes of anger, learning to channel it constructively, and developing strategies to express it in a way that is both healthy and effective. This way, anger becomes a tool for positive change and personal growth rather than an uncontrollable force.

NB: It is important to note that chemically induced rage falls outside our expertise.

Overwhelming Guilt

Overwhelming guilt, often underestimated in its prevalence, commonly arises from experiences of abuse or manipulation. This condition does more than cause personal distress; it actively prevents individuals from making positive changes in their lives.

In the emotional spectrum, anger may represent dominance, but guilt typically signifies submission. According to Message-Based Psychology (MBP), there’s a crucial distinction between feeling guilty and being guilty. It’s fascinating how individuals can rationalize their misdemeanors, ranging from minor slip-ups to significant offenses, without feeling any guilt. Our research and clinical experiences at the Advanced Psychology Institute have shown that guilt feelings are usually triggered by external aggression and manipulation, shedding light on why guilt-tripping is an effective manipulation strategy.

At the Advanced Psychology Institute, our approach to treating overwhelming guilt focuses on identifying the real roots of these feelings in our clients. We concentrate on crafting strategies that enable them to change their behavior, thereby diminishing the influence of aggressors and manipulators in their lives.

Stress Management

Common wisdom attributes the stress prevalent in our lives to the complexities of the modern world, suggesting that stress reduction lies in lifestyle simplification and the development of coping mechanisms and resilience strategies. However, at the Advanced Psychology Institute, we advocate for a deeper understanding.

We’ve found that the majority of stress originates from issues in interpersonal relationships, driven by miscommunication, unmanaged expectations, and destructive defense mechanisms. Our research and experience have led us to conclude that effective relationship management stands as the most potent antidote to stress. The essence lies not in what is observed but in the interpretation of our reality. Our methodology underscores the importance of recognizing and modifying these perceptions. For instance, the pervasive feeling of being “never enough” leads many to overload themselves with responsibilities under the belief that this is expected of them. Coupled with the notion that failure is unacceptable, this mindset can become a significant source of stress and anxiety, potent enough to trigger severe pain and illness. Hence, the critical need for expectation management, one of the most efficient tools for alleviating stress.

We also focus on building skills for effective communication and developing healthier defense mechanisms. These skills are vital in not only managing current interpersonal relationships but also in resolving past conflicts that continue to influence our present. At the Advanced Psychology Institute, our focus on managing perceptions and expectations, both personally and in our interactions with others, is fundamental to our stress reduction strategy.

Anxiety

An estimated 31.1% of U.S. adults experience an anxiety disorder at some point in their lives. Some people are naturally more predisposed to anxiety than others, depending on their life experiences and personality traits.  

Message-Based Psychology (MBP) views anxiety as both an emotion – specifically, the fear of being unprepared for potential future events – and a behavior that communicates this fear to others. Our treatment addresses both aspects.

Reducing the feeling of anxiety involves clarifying one’s social role and establishing clear interpersonal boundaries. We’ve found that these roles and boundaries are essential for managing expectations effectively.  For the behavioral aspect, we guide our clients to express their fears in alternative ways, such as through verbal communication. 

Our approach is effective in treating a range of anxiety disorders, including complex conditions like social anxiety (extreme shyness) and various phobias. 

Depressive Disorders

Depression transforms the vibrant palette of life into monochromatic shades of gray. Simple tasks become daunting, and hopelessness casts a long shadow, obscuring any belief in a positive future. In these moments, the mere act of rising from bed can seem like a Herculean effort.

At the Advanced Psychology Institute, we deeply understand these struggles. When you find yourself in this state, we are here to offer support and guidance. Our team specializes in customized therapies and interventions designed to bring color back to life, reignite motivation, and reclaim the sense of purpose obscured by depression. Together, we work towards a path of recovery, where every step, no matter its size, is progress toward brighter days. 

Addictive Behaviors and Eating Disorders

Addiction has become a major societal threat comparable to terrorism and climate change. Current treatments for addiction are often inadequate, as evidenced by high relapse rates, with many individuals reverting to their addictive behaviors. Additionally, new forms of addiction are being recognized with each update of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual.

The traditional view of addiction as primarily pleasure-seeking behavior is increasingly seen as limited. Our research indicates that social factors often overshadow the pursuit of pleasure. People endure significant physical discomfort and pain for social benefits, which may seem marginal.

Message-Based Psychology introduces novel approaches to addiction. We view addiction as a mix of escapism – an attempt to flee from the harsh realities of life – and dissociation, where willpower becomes ineffective. The physical aspect of substance addiction is usually secondary and addressed separately.

Our findings suggest that it’s not just hardship that drives escapist behavior but rather a perceived helplessness and lack of control over one’s life. Our treatments, therefore, focus on these underlying perceptions, aiming to restore patients’ control over their lives. We view addictive behavior as a symptom and strive to address its root cause. Our definition of recovery shifts from ‘learning to control urges’ to ‘eliminating the urges altogether.’

Addictive behaviors often serve as compensation for a perceived loss of control in real life, providing an escape to a realm under the patient’s control. For example, in alcoholism, the act of drinking becomes a form of exerting control, as in computer gaming, the player dominates the virtual world. Eating disorders exhibit a similar pattern of control over food intake or purging.

To outsiders, someone with an addiction may seem ‘out of control.’ However, psychologically, addiction can be about gaining control, even though control over the urge to escape is lost.

Our treatments have shown success in several patients with alcohol dependency and Internet addiction. Further research is essential to enhance the effectiveness of our treatments and broaden their applicability.

Autistic Spectrum Disorder

Message-based Psychology offers a new perspective with respect to Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD): all signs and symptoms of the disorder follow from a single cognitive deficiency. While neurotypical people interact with their environment relying on similarities and analogies to what they are already familiar with, people on the Spectrum have difficulty disregarding the details that make the current situation different from what they saw before. This realization opens new approaches to helping such people to adjust better, become more productive, and ultimately, thrive. By identifying and making full use of their other cognitive functions, we help our clients use their strengths such as strong logic and attention to details to compensate for their weaknesses. We unite our efforts with Rutgers University to provide more clinical studies in this area.

Dyslexia & Dyscalculia

According to Message-based Psychology (MBP), the autistic spectrum does conclude with neurotypicality; it extends to include dyslexia. Clinically, dyslexia is recognized as a learning disability affecting reading abilities. MBP introduces the concept of an autistic-dyslexic spectrum, placing everyone somewhere between clinical autism and clinical dyslexia. Individuals closer to the dyslexic end typically excel in identifying similarities but struggle to notice differences. This insight has led to innovative treatments for dyslexia and related conditions on this spectrum.

People within the dyslexic range may not always exhibit typical dyslexic symptoms (like reading and writing challenges) but might face difficulties in understanding mathematical concepts, a condition known as dyscalculia. While some attribute this to gaps in current educational methods, MBP acknowledges the reality of this condition and suggests effective strategies for overcoming it. These include contextualizing mathematical concepts to utilize their intuitive strengths and employing guess-and-check techniques over traditional logic and memorization. 

Personality Disorders

Personality disorders are challenging to address due to their deep-seated nature in an individual’s personality. Message-Based Psychology (MBP) offers innovative approaches, particularly for Cluster “B” disorders, which encompass Borderline, Narcissistic, Histrionic, and Antisocial Personality Disorders. MBP identifies a shared root among these disorders: a rigid, black-and-white perception of social realities. Although this binary view is a normal developmental phase, most individuals progress beyond it.

Our treatment strategies, while still evolving, are focused and methodical. They revolve around helping clients adapt to social hierarchies and adjust their perception of their status in varying contexts. This approach marks a significant step forward in effectively managing and treating these complex conditions. 

Gifted and Highly Intelligent Teens and Adults

Is intellectual giftedness a blessing or a curse? High intellectual abilities bring with them distinct psychological challenges. Giftedness, often measured by IQ despite its controversies, can set individuals apart in profound ways.

Many gifted teens and adults find themselves feeling alienated in their surroundings, struggling with social discomfort and a sense of being fundamentally different. They grapple with isolation, peer disapproval, pressure to conform, and the frustration of not fully utilizing their extraordinary talents. In some instances, these challenges escalate into self-doubt, frustration, disappointment, and even existential depression.

Research indicates that gifted individuals perceive and experience the world differently from the norm. Dr. Fradkov, himself identified as gifted from an early age, specializes in supporting highly intelligent people. With years of experience as a gifted individual, he offers unparalleled psychological guidance. His method involves engaging as an equal in intellect, directly addressing each individual’s unique needs and concerns.

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