How STAIR Narrative Therapy Works

The first module STAIR, is a multi-session skill based treatment model for improving capacity for emotional regulation and interpersonal functioning. There are 4 main goals of STAIR:

How STAIR Narrative Therapy Works?EMOTIONAL AWARENESS: Helping individuals learn the connection between traumatic experiences and difficulties in emotional awareness and expression.

EMOTIONAL REGULATION: Helping clients learn to monitor feelings, triggers, thoughts with the goal of developing more helpful coping skills for dealing with extreme emotions or reactions.

UNDERSTANDING RELATIONSHIP PATTERNS: Helping individuals understand in what ways (e.g. schemas) their traumatic experiences influence their view of themselves and expectations in relationships.

IMPROVING INTERPERSONAL RELATIONSHIPS IN THE HERE AND NOW: Helping clients learn and practice new ways of relating and behaving with others by role playing new skills (e.g., assertiveness and flexibility/adaptability interpersonal interactions).

The second module incorporates narration of trauma with continued skills development. The narrative work has the following goals for treatment:

Narrative therapy

IDENTIFYING CURRENT DIFFICULTIES AS BASED IN PAST TRAUMAS AND LETTING THEM GO: Trauma memories are reviewed; trauma related interpersonal schemas (beliefs, feelings and behaviors) are identified. These patterns of thinking, feeling and acting result from efforts to respond effectively to the trauma and are often adaptive in the context of the trauma. However, once the trauma, these habits of feeling, thinking and acting may no longer be adaptive. The value of these schemas in past situations is acknowledged while options for new ways of feeling and relating are identified and practiced.

BUILDING AN AUTOBIOGRAPHY:Individuals are asked to organize narratives of their traumatic memories with a beginning, middle and end and to imagine these memories as part of an autobiography. The analogy to the autobiography is used to encourage consideration of the traumatic experiences as only some of the many chapters of a life from which some meaning can be made and used to build a future.  The recovering individual is encouraged to think of him or herselves as the author of his or her own story, free to imagine future chapters for themselves.