When I first began doing psychotherapy in 1979, it would have been tantamount to malpractice to take up time in my clients' sessions teaching them mindfullness meditation practices. And now? It seems truly unconscionable to me NOT to teach my clients this extraordinarily effective means of managing anxiety, diminishing depression, improving all kinds of focus and performance, and overall, enhancing the quality and enjoyment of life.

Meditation is simply this: focusing on something - ANY thing - and then, when your mind wanders (and it will just because you're human) calmly and gently notice that your mind has wandered and then bring yourself back to yor original focus.

There are millions of ways to accomplish this, millions of things to use as the original focus, yet it all comes back to that. RE-focusing onto your image or word or color or object. Two minutes - first thing upon awakening - last thing upon lying down to sleep - and maybe three other times during the day.  Practice it when you're relatively calm and that way, you have it as a resource when you are distressed.

It's something I do... and it's something I encourage for my clients.

That said, what does spirituality have to do with psychotherapy? After all, meditation has a place in many of the world's religions but it is not necessarily a religious practice.

The same seems true of spirituality as an essential aspect of this human experience. It seems to me that either we have faith, or we're still looking for it.

And that doesn't necessarily mean religion, although it can mean religion.

My up-bringing and personal identification are both Jewish. Mostly secular and cultural, with a fair amount of knowledge from 12 years of Hebrew School, little to know Hebrew language competence (I seem to be quite incompetent at learning languages), and just a little bit of current practice.

But over three decades of participating in psychotherapy with my clients has taught me there are innumerable ways that a sense of something larger than ourselves figures into how we feel - about ourselves, about our relationships, even about getting up in the morning. And I am always open to dicussing faith (or the seeming lack of it) when this appears to be a critical component of my clients' struggles.  Christianity, Catholicism, Buddhism, Islam, Religious Science, Judaism - they all have things to teach us and I am open to learning and sharing any of it with my clients.