In the toxic polarization of our society, most of us try to stay focused on our traditional work of personal healing, trying to steer clear of the struggles in our wider culture. But if “winter is coming,” a more proactive alternative is to expand our conception of psychotherapy to include building capacity for people to live in a pluralistic democracy that doesn’t rely on “saviors” of the Left or Right. How can we enhance our impact in a Game of Thrones world, where red tribes battle blue tribes, democracy is in retreat, and climate change threatens us all? Explore a larger vision for our role as therapists. You’ll discover how to:
- Identify the connection between your current clinical work and democratic renewal
- Develop skills in bridging gaps between groups who see themselves as opposing the political “other”
- Practice depolarization skills in your own life and work
- Connect with organizations and initiatives where you can use your knowledge and skills for the public good
William Doherty, PhD, is a professor and director of the Minnesota Couples on the Brink Project at the University of Minnesota. His books include Helping Couples on the Brink of Divorce: Discernment Counseling for Troubled Relationships, with Steven Harris.