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This Therapy Changed My Life And It Could Do The Same For You: Internal Family Systems with Dr Richard Schwartz

by Dr. Rangan Chatterjee   /  March 9, 2022

This week’s episode is a rather special one. In fact, I would say this is potentially one of the most important episodes I’ve ever released on my podcast because today, I am talking to Dr. Richard Schwartz. He’s the creator of an incredible treatment modality called internal family systems, also known as IFS.

IFS has had a transformative impact on my own life – I feel calmer, more content and more at peace than I have ever done before. And without question, it has helped me to become a better husband and father. My hope is that this conversation might be the start of something life changing for you as well.

Dick begins by explaining how IFS rejects the idea that we each have one ‘true’ identity. Having multiple parts or personalities is not, as the movies would have us believe, a dangerous pathology. It’s a normal, healthy way for the mind to function. We often want to wish certain parts of ourselves away – if only we could get rid of our destructive streak, or silence the inner critic, say. But in IFS all our parts are welcome. Dick explains that they start out as valuable, but in early life trauma or attachment injuries can force these parts into destructive roles. He calls these ‘legacy burdens’. He explains how IFS works in the moment to help us revisit a trauma, retrieve the ‘stuck’ part of yourself and bring it to safety, thereby rewriting your story. It’s a guided self-healing.

The very best way to understand IFS is to witness a live demonstration. And that is exactly what happens in today’s conversation – I become the patient and Richard takes me through a real-time session.

IFS is an evidence based framework that helps a whole variety of different conditions – PTSD, addictions, anxiety, depression, eating disorders, rheumatoid arthritis, back pain and so much more. My firm belief is that IFS is a system that can help pretty much anyone whether they have a mental health diagnosis or not.

This really is a powerful conversation. I am so grateful to Dick for creating IFS but also for making time to come and speak to me on my podcast. I really hope that you enjoy listening.

Disclaimer: The content in the podcast and on this webpage is not intended to constitute or be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.*

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Watch the video version of this interview – click below.

'Internal Family Systems has been transformative, it has helped me become a better husband and father.' Share on X

Connect with Dick:

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Dick’s Books:

No Bad Parts: Healing Trauma and Restoring Wholeness with the Internal Family Systems Model

You Are the One You’ve Been Waiting For (Internal Family Systems)

Internal Family Systems Therapy

Further Learning:

Dr Chatterjee’s resources:

#37 How Our Childhood Shapes Every Aspect of Our Health with Dr. Gabor Maté

#106 Gabor Maté: Is Coronavirus Showing Us Who We Really Are?

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*DISCLAIMER: Always seek the advice of your doctor or other qualified health care provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have heard on the podcast or on my website.

†Disclosure: All books marked with a † are hyperlinked to an affiliate program. We take part in Amazon’s affiliate advertising program designed to provide a way for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon’s website. You are not charged any extra by using these links to purchase books.

Dr. Rangan Chatterjee MbChB, BSc (Hons), MRCP, MRCGP