1st Edition

Compassion Focused Group Therapy for University Counseling Centers A Clinician’s Guide

    216 Pages 49 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    216 Pages 49 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Compassion focused therapy (CFT) articulates an approach that faces suffering head-on to understand, alleviate, and prevent suffering in ourselves and in others. Compassion Focused Group Therapy for University Counseling Centers is a one-of-a-kind 12-session manual for conducting compassion focused group therapy on university campuses with students presenting a diverse set of complex mental health concerns.

    Beginning with suggested readings designed to enrich understanding of the principles covered, each module presents psychoeducation interventions, engaging intrapersonal and interpersonal exercises, and process-oriented instructions. Modules can be followed session-by-session or adapted according to the needs of the group. Eye-catching handouts are included at the end of the modules to help leaders provide visual representation of the themes discussed in each session.

    This manual is designed to be used by licensed clinicians and should be used in conjunction with the manual’s companion Compassion Focused Therapy Participant Workbook which provides clients with summaries of each session, handouts, and key exercises.

    Foreword by Paul Gilbert



    Module 1: Introduction, Compassion, & Tricky Brain

    Module 2: Three Systems of Emotion

    Module 3: Mindfulness

    Module 4: Feeling Safe and Receiving Compassion from Others

    Module 5: Compassionate-Self

    Module 6: Multiple Selves

    Module 7: Self-Criticism

    Module 8: Shame and Guilt

    Module 9: Deepening Compassion for the Self

    Module 10: Compassionate Assertiveness

    Module 11: Forgiveness

    Module 12: Envisioning a Compassionate Future


    Kara Cattani is a clinical professor and director of Student Development Services at Brigham Young University. She divides her time between administrative work, clinical practice, training of graduate students, consulting, and clinical research.

    Derek Griner is a practicing board-certified counseling psychologist with significant CFT experience. His research focuses on diversity issues for which he received APA’s Division 17 award for excellence in scholarship.

    David M. Erekson is a board-certified psychologist and an associate clinical professor at Brigham Young University. A dedicated scientist-practitioner, he has an active clinical practice and a psychotherapy research lab.

    Gary M. Burlingame has contributed over 75 books, manuals, and chapters and 150 articles on effective small group treatments and is president-elect of the American Group Psychotherapy Association.

    Mark E. Beecher is a board-certified counseling psychologist who has practiced in a college counseling center for over 20 years. His practice and research interests include individual/group psychotherapy, CFT, and multicultural competence.

    Cameron T. Alldredge is completing his doctoral internship in a university counseling center. As an emerging psychologist, he is passionate about teaching, research, and clinical practice.

    "In this companion set of Compassion Focused Group Therapy guides for group facilitators and for group participants, the authors have created a remarkably accessible resource that promotes deeply humane, high quality clinical care. The manuals are written with the wisdom of experienced group therapists utilizing a structured, well- defined and well- researched model of compassion focused care. These therapy guides address the implementation gap that so often exists between theory and clinical practice in ways that are particularly relevant for today’s group therapists and their clients." —Molyn Leszcz, MD, FRCPC, CGP, DFAGPA, professor of Psychiatry, University of Toronto, president, the American Group Psychotherapy Association.

    "This manual and workbook is a tour de force! Compassion focused therapy (CFT) is a powerful, multi-dimensional, scientifically-based approach to managing difficult emotions. The authors have brilliantly condensed CFT into twelve, easily digestible modules. This could be the most valuable course a student takes in college—learning to regulate emotions by cultivating a compassionate mind.  Highly recommended for young and old!" —Christopher Germer, PhD, lecturer (part-time), Harvard Medical School, co-author, Teaching the Mindful Self-Compassion Program.

    "Compassion Focused Therapy embodies the major tenets of the APA-accredited group psychology and group psychotherapy specialty. It gives essential instruction for leaders and members, presenting the ideas in well written text with great graphics. This program takes the practitioner through the steps and issues central to initiating, managing, and practicing group therapy in college counseling settings in a manner that lines up nicely with the guidelines of the group specialty." —Joshua M. Gross, PhD, ABPP, director of Group Programs, licensed psychologist.

    "Highly recommended are the manual and workbook for Compassion Focused Group Therapy for University Counseling Centers. These present a sequence of group sessions that clinicians will find as excellent guidance for group facilitation and members will help structure their own personal development. The authors are to be commended for developing these evidence- based publications that are well researched, written and are shown to benefit group to grow, develop and heal." — Nina W. Brown, EdD, professor and eminent scholar, Old Dominion University; distinguished fellow, American Group Psychotherapy Association; fellow American Psychological Association.

    "The last 20 years has seen an explosion of research into the physiological and psychological effects of compassion training, and how to make compassion central to psychotherapeutic endeavours. In this beautifully written and easily accessible work internationally renowned group researcher and psychotherapist Gary Burlingame and his team outline a group modular approach for young people attending University with mental health difficulties. With their already excellent research findings and programme, all group therapist will gain enormously from the wisdoms, clarity and guidance offered here." — Professor Paul Gilbert, OBE, author of The Compassionate Mind (2009); Compassion Focused Therapy (2010), and president of the Compassionate Mind Foundation.

    "This manual skillfully blends the content and process driven elements of short term CFT groups, whilst offering creativity and concrete guidance. This is an absolute gift to our CFT community and will be essential reading for all those Compassion Focused Therapists who are motivated to explore the affiliative possibilities of group based CFT. This manual also reflects the wealth of experience and knowledge in groupwork practice brought by the authors." — Kate Lucre, PhD, psychotherapist, Birmingham and Solihull Mental Trust.

    "Compassion Focused Therapy (CFT) is a powerful approach to mental health. It puts compassion as the central therapeutic target, with research showing it helps improve neurophysiology, mental health, interpersonal relations and pro-social behaviour with a diverse range of difficulties. This new manual is an excellent guide to implementing group CFT. The authors have provided exceptional guidance, clear dialogue examples, insightful graphics and metaphors that bring key CFT concepts to life. This manual will transform the way you deliver CFT." — James N. Kirby, PhD, senior lecturer and clinical psychologist.