Internal Family Systems

The Internal Family Systems Model (IFS), first developed by Richard C. Schwartz, is an integrative approach to individual psychotherapy that combines systems thinking with the view that mind is made up of separate subpersonalities, each with its own viewpoint and qualities. The focus of IFS therapy is to get to know each of these subpersonalities and understand how they work as a whole in order to better achieve healing. IFS can be used to treat individuals, couples, and families and it has been shown to be effective for treating a variety issues, including depression, anxiety, and panic. Think this approach might be right for you? Reach out to one of TherapyDen’s Internal Family Systems specialists today.

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Internal family systems, or IFS, is a transformative type of therapy that believes we are all made up of several parts or sub-personalities, some of which are wounded. These wounded parts can carry painful emotions such as anger and shame. The goal of IFS therapy is to restore balance and harmony within the internal system by healing the wounded parts and learn to manage inner conflict in healthier ways.

— Carmen F Juneidi, Licensed Clinical Social Worker in Chicago, IL

I am currently engaged in the comprehensive Stepping Stone course from Canada's Internal Family Systems Counselling Association, and will pursue the IFS Institute's training as soon as it becomes available.

— Annie Alesandrini, Psychotherapist

I am in the process of receiving training and certification in Internal Family Systems therapy.

— Julia Krump, Licensed Clinical Social Worker in Nashville, TN

IFS is a journey of seeking internal peace and harmony. Internal systems can become unbalanced as a result of trauma, systemic racism, attachment injuries, and other painful experiences. When internal systems become unbalanced, different Parts influence one another in harmful and unproductive ways. An IFS therapist supports the journey to a harmonious system, where all Parts are connected and collaborative. And a harmonious internal system supports harmonnious external experiences.

— Ji Eun Ko, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in San Diego, CA

Our minds are actually made up of sub-personalities. We may have our "work part" or "romantic part" and our work will be to get to know these different parts and understand what they do for our internal system. IFS believes we have an inherent self that can lead these parts in healthy ways by showing them compassion and a sense of self-leadership. This therapy will help the parts begin to trust the self. *IFS Informed

— Joshua Bogart, Professional Counselor Associate in Beaverton, OR

I draw largely from Internal Family Systems therapy and the belief that we all have parts of ourselves that cause us to think, feel and behave. While good intentioned, these parts can take over, making us feel like we are flawed or broken. By learning their good intentions we can find new ways of relating to and interacting in the world. I find that each IFS session results in insight and growth and is a gentle way to move toward deep healing and observable change.

— Tierney McNulty, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in ,

Parts work is an essential component of treating trauma as a whole, due to our human tendency to dissociate to varying degrees. This is a gentle, respectful, yet powerful approach.

— Anya Surnitsky, Licensed Clinical Social Worker in ,

IFS works with the different ages parts of each of us that exist internally. Through building relationship with, releasing emotion, and building attachment to the hurt parts of us we can learn to trust ourselves. IFS is so helpful in reparenting ourselves.

— Angharad Hollingworth, Associate Marriage & Family Therapist

We each contain a multiplicity of parts within our own psyche. IFS is evidence-based and is a compassionate approach to healing trauma.

— Malia Scott, Associate Professional Counselor in Lubbock, TX

Internal Family Systems is a powerfully transformative, evidence-based model of psychotherapy. We believe the mind is naturally multiple, and that is a good thing. Our inner parts contain valuable qualities and our core Self knows how to heal, allowing us to become integrated and whole. In IFS all parts are welcome.

— David Yellen, Licensed Clinical Social Worker - Candidate in brooklyn, NY

I have taken several courses in grad school that teach IFS. Using IFS means that we'll address the different parts of yourself to get a deeper understanding of you as a whole. We'll look at how those parts may be helping or hindering yourself or your other parts and try to integrate the parts.

— Erin Moore, Licensed Professional Counselor in ,

I am trained in IFS, a new, empowering approach to therapy that focuses on our various "parts" and seeks to understand and harmonize the mind. I find this an extraordinarily powerful tool that is not pathologizing and helps create a trusted, healthy internal system with our best Self at the center.

— Rick Isenberg, Licensed Professional Counselor in Ridgway, CO

You may not know what is keeping you stuck in the feedback loop of anxiety and depression. As an IFS oriented therapist, I will help you identify the parts of you that are keeping you stuck and help you return to self-leadership. Like coaching a team, I will help you learn the players (parts) on your team, teach them how to work well together in connection and flow and ultimately lead them to victory. That victory will be indicative of healed trauma, strong self-knowing and authenticity.

— Heidi Bailey, Clinical Social Worker in Ocean Isle Beach, NC

This is like inner child work for the intellectual - IFS gives us language to conceptualize the different "parts" of ourselves that have developed distinct roles in maintaining our wellbeing. Identifying your parts can help us recognize the effects of trauma and internalized beliefs from childhood, and provides you an empowered way to change your internal system.

— Hannah Bliss, Licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselor Associate in Issaquah, WA

Aligning the parts of ourselves with loving, compassion, and acceptance of self.

— Denae Arnold, Licensed Professional Counselor in Wheatridge, CO

Together we will explore the past challenges that have created discomfort in your current day-to-day. We will discuss the various parts of yourself that have held on to experiences and have created protective behaviors to continue functioning. I believe that we all have parts within us that experience and respond to difficult situations and events in different ways. Within our work, we will discover your various internal parts and help them to function more successfully.

— Lauren Perez, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in San Diego, CA