Author(s): Elliot L. Jurist
Mentalization--the effort to make sense of our own and others' actions, behavior, and internal states--is something we all do. And it is a capacity that all psychotherapies aim to improve: the better we are at mentalizing, the more resilient and flexible we tend to be. This concise, engaging book offers a brief overview of mentalization in psychotherapy, focusing on how to help patients understand and reflect on their emotional experiences. Elliot Jurist integrates cognitive science research and psychoanalytic theory to break down "mentalized affectivity" into discrete processes that therapists can cultivate in session. The book interweaves clinical vignettes with discussions of memoirs by comedian Sarah Silverman, poet Tracy Smith, filmmaker Ingmar Bergman, and neurologist Oliver Sacks. A reproducible assessment instrument (the Mentalized Affectivity Scale) can be downloaded and printed in a convenient 8 1/2" x 11" size.