Advances in neuroscience and brain imaging research are changing the field of psychotherapy. This exciting new frontier allows therapists to tailor interventions that help the brain and mind grow more efficiently. A working knowledge of how neuroscience can be harnessed gives a therapist additional tools to promote psychological resilience, emotional regulation and reduce nervous system reactivity.

The neurobiology of couples work is also an exciting new development in understanding how two people interact and provides a fresh perspective on why problems can arise in intimate relationships. Many of our responses to one another are automatic and happen before we even think. Bringing a neurobiological perspective to couples work reduces taking things too personally and seeks a practical and effective way to create lasting positive change in partner interactions.

Neurobiological advances also seem to affirm the positive effects of mindfulness and self-compassion on our brains and manner of relating. This confluence of old and new, East meets West, validates ancient and spiritual approaches to personal growth and explains the value of those approaches through empirical scientific evidence.

You might find working with a neurobiologically-oriented therapist curious at first. They may make comments on what they notice in your face and body, or pay special attention to seeming automatic reactions. But over time, you may come to really appreciate the value of such work. It brings therapy into the present moment, promoting body-based and emotional awareness, and helps couples attend to one another (to the process of being together), rather than getting lost in the content or in circular discussions.