The Evidence-Based Therapy, where we read so you don’t have to (but we hope you do)!

Transformational Change

  • Ecker’s article defines transformational change as 
    • the disappearance of a symptom (an unwanted behavior, affect, cognition, and/or somatization)
    • the disappearance of the symptom’s accompanying emotional activation or distressed ego-state
    • the permanent, effortless persistence of those two changes
  • The overall intent of this definition is okay, but the language used is a bit muddy

Erasure of an Emotional Learning 

  • A potential limitation in the literature regarding memory reconsolidation is the focus on the schematic 
  • Example about being afraid of the dark   (22:20)
  • There’s not a thorough understanding of the “why” behind the fear
  • And oftentimes a fear can be about more than the obvious experience
  • There are several categorizations of memories 
  • And it can be very complicated to make sure all of these factors are working together 
  • While schemas are not cognitive, they are often identified through cognitive articulation 
  • Semantic memory can be overgeneralized as “it’s the part of the brain that knows facts about the world” 
  • But it makes more sense when you realize these are subjectively internalized facts 
  • Which can require reworking
  • Eliminating a distressed ego-state is not the goal 
  • Instead, “It would be the integration of the ego-state that leads to a reorganization of strategies that the ego-state utilizes” (36:17)
  • “We’re not trying to get rid of the person’s subjectivity. We just want each part of the person’s subjectivity to be connected with the other parts” (37:53)
  • Eliminating or making an ego-state disappear is not what we want to do 

Bringing in the processes of EBT

  • Scientifically, it can be tricky to be certain that a process will work
  • Ecker’s work holds more rigidity in the steps of memory reconsolidation 
  • However, he also says it’s about the process, not the protocol 
  • You don’t have to force memory reconsolidation, it is a naturally occurring process 
  • There may be too much focus on episodic memory on demonstrating the validity of the process
  • Because it requires far too much objectification 
  • Are we so afraid of our own position in this universe that we cling to objectifying rigidity? (1:16:38)
  • Overall, Ecker’s work can be very unifying 

Season 2 Articles

Ecker, B., & Bridges, S. K. (2020). How the science of memory reconsolidation advances the effectiveness and unification of psychotherapy. Clinical Social Work Journal, 48(3), 287-300.


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Executive Directors: Jennifer and Ryan Savage, Melissa Bentinnedi, Bridger Falkenstein
Hosts: Bridger Falkenstein, Caleb Boston, and  Melissa Benintendi
Filmographer: Tyler Wassam
Podcast Editor: Jamie Eggert
Original Music Composers: Bridger Falkenstein and Caleb Boston
Show Notes: Jamie Eggert & Jordan Murray