IFS (Internal Family Systems) is a gentle form of psychotherapy, as well as a model of the mind. It goes to the roots of what is disturbing us in a safe, respectful, and nurturing way in order to bring lasting change. IFS is a path to understanding the dynamics of our inner life and bringing greater calm, clarity, creativity, and compassion into our lives. It can help us transform our mood, relationships, work performance, and overall life effectiveness and satisfaction.
IFS is recognizes that we each have multiple aspects of our personality. We call these aspects "parts." Each part has its own beliefs, attitudes, interests, skills, and roles. Your parts make you who you are. Your parts also create your own distinctive internal system, as if there was a team of parts inside of you.
Our parts are resources that help us function effectively in all realms of our lives: as self-aware individuals, and as members of families, work places, organizations, and communities. In a relatively healthy internal system, our parts work harmoniously with one another.
Have you ever had difficulty making a decision and thought to yourself, "This part of me wants to do something and that part of me wants to avoid doing that same thing!" Those two parts are probably in conflict. It's important to know that this experience is totally normal. It may even show that we intuitively understand that internally we aren't one, we are many.
When we've experienced trauma or other life difficulties, our parts can become extreme in their efforts to protect us and help us survive. Most of us, maybe all of us, have extreme parts, although our friends and family may be more aware of them than we are!
When our internal system has more turmoil, we may have a greater number of extreme parts and some of our parts will be in conflict with other parts. Some of our parts will also very likely be in conflict with someone else's parts. These conflicts can become uncomfortable. With IFS, we can work with the internal system to help it become much more integrated and functional.
I specialize in IFS therapy and am deeply committed to this work. I have taken Level 1 and Level 2 trainings with the IFS-Institute. I have worked as a Program Assistant for IFS-Institute Level 1 trainings and continue to take formal training in Internal Family Systems with the IFS-Institute and other training groups. I also work regularly with my own IFS therapist and two peer IFS consultation groups.
If you are interested in using IFS for your own healing and growth, let's talk!
Blog Posts About IFS - Internal Family Systems
- Video: Intro to IFS Therapy with Tori OldsIFS (Internal Family Systems) is effective and powerful precisely because it is gentle and respectful. Some clients are happy to use the process and not think about how it works. That's perfectly fine. Others want to understand the theory behind … Read more
- Video: A brief intro to IFSInternal Family Systems (IFS) is a powerful tool for calming the anxious mental chatter and conflicted emotions we feel inside us. IFS provides a way for us to connect with the parts within us, learn from these parts, and move … Read more