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Upwards Arrow Technique: Use of Metaneeds in the Treatment of Impulsive and Entitled Behaviors

by Alp Karaosmanoglu


Being able to understand and adapt to the limits of life is an important skill. But some people find it very hard to cope with the obligations of daily life and suffer with problems of academic performance, substance misuse, overweight, many forms of addiction, difficulty in regular sporting, loyalty problems, over-sleeping, and so on.

In Schema Therapy, general concept about these problems is these individuals have impaired and insufficient limits. During the treatment, clients are helped to understand the necessity of limits and its positive effect on their lives. But most of the time, introducing "limits" as a need to some people causes problem. Healthy adult sides of the clients can get it but not their impulsive sides.

Based on our clinical experience and empirical findings about the schemas and needs, we developed a model which takes the core need of this problematic domain as “freedom” instead of “limits”. According to this approach, impulsive and narcissistic problems stem from a specific fear which is about losing freedom, or more generally, comfort.

In latest researches about the schema domains, Insufficient Self-discipline (IS), Entitlement (ET) and Approval/Status Seeking (AS) appear to be in the same domain called Impaired Limits. The addendum of Approval Seeking to this area helped us to understand the basis of the limit problems. Like the fear of losing health in the Vulnerability to Harm schema, these clients have the fear of losing their comfort and freedom. To cope with this fear, they develop AS to guarantee their privileged positions against to be considered as an ordinary or common person. The entitled and impulsive acts also help them to stay in comfort.

In this workshop the freedom approach will be introduced to the participants and the techniques derived to help the clients with these impulsive and entitled behavior problems will be shown.

About the Presenter:

Alp Karaosmanoglu

Psychiatrist, Founder of PsikoNET Psychiatry and Training Center Advanced Certified Schema Therapist, Supervisor, and Trainer.

Hasan Alp Karaosmanoğlu works as a psychiatrist and a psychotherapist in Istanbul. He is the author of the book Oops, Something Bad Will Happen -The Pincer of Worry: Anxiety and Conscience. Alp continues his ISST-approved training and certification programs in Turkey and abroad.

Why Schema Therapy?

Schema therapy has been extensively researched to effectively treat a wide variety of typically treatment resistant conditions, including Borderline Personality Disorder and Narcissistic Personality Disorder. Read our summary of the latest research comparing the dramatic results of schema therapy compared to other standard models of psychotherapy.

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