I’m Dave MacDonald with David J. MacDonald LCSW, PLLC.  I’m a Clinical Social Worker licensed to practice clinical psychotherapy in North Carolina and Georgia.  I’m specially trained to offer you leading-edge and research based alternative therapies like EMDR ® for PTSD or  HeartMath ® heart rate variability biofeedback training for lower stress and more coherent decision making.

I’m trained in the Internal Family Systems ® model of clinical psychotherapy and offer the Alpha-Stim SCS ® a non-drug treatment for anxiety, depression and insomnia.  For the treatment for grief, a recently developed (although unconventional) procedure – the Induced After-Death Communication or IADC ® – is showing promise.    Many of the most promising therapies today are those which are informed by recent developments in Attachment Theory and the growing field of Interpersonal Neurobiology;  these newer therapies are frequently able to touch and heal certain types of emotional problems which conventional talking oriented styles of therapy have failed to resolve.  These therapies recognize and seek to activate the  natural healing tendencies existing in the body-mind of every person.   I believe that the body’s experience of feeling safe in the moment by moment unfolding of a therapeutic relationship is an essential aspect of healing;  that therapy is a collaborative process between the patient and therapist and that therapy, at its core, is about learning to live more fully and creatively.

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contact Dave MacDonald for artist info Brave Heart – 2013

For well over 2 decades, I’ve been a big fan of the clinical guided imagery developed by Belleruth Naparstek and distributed though her company Health Journeys.  I was introduced to her guided imagery by my colleague and friend, Atlanta psychotherapist Cynthia Smith.  Through my formative years as a young Clinical Social Worker, Cynthia was my reference point for good judgment, outstanding clinical direction and she was a deep and wise guide for my own introspection.  I could always count on her good guidance and she was so right about Belleruth, whose soothing hypnotic voice is a prominent feature on her vast list of guided imageries.  Belleruth blogged about 5 FREE mobile apps useful in managing the symptoms of PTSD, Anxiety & Stress.  I’ve checked them out and offer you my thoughts about several of them. [read more…]

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A friend shared thBarbara Findeisen - S.T.A.R.  is recent interview with Pre & Peri Natal Psychology Pioneer Barbara Findeisen.  The interview appears in the July-August 2012 issue of Spirituality & Health.  Paul Sutherland interviews Findeisen who is Past President of the Association for Prenatal & Perinatal Psychology and Health – APPPAH & founder of the Star Foundation.  The Foundation runs therapeutic workshops and professional training as well as a sanctuary for healing at Kenyon Ranch near Tucson, AZ .

I’ve had the great fortune of learning from Barbara and have continued to marvel at the dynamic life of this so present & loving woman.  I attended a S.T.A.R. Retreat more than 20 years ago.  It was held at a magical place called the Pocket Ranch, located in Northern California  (The location of S.T.A.R. Retreats has since moved to another magical location.).  My experience(s) during S.T.A.R. enabled me to change the course of my personal and professional lives in ways that I could not have imagined.   Barbara Findeisen taught me about birth trauma and introduced to me a realm of healing that forever changed the way I think, practice and live.  Thank-YOU forever Barbara!

To read the full article click on the photo of Barbara Findeisen.

 

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Captain H. Martin MacDonald, Jr. - B-29 Commander

Dad in his B-29

I read recently an article by Dr. Francine Shapiro concerning combat veterans suffering from untreated PTSD, the impact this had on their children and the hope of undoing or preventing such damage in the future because of a psychotherapy called EMDR.

My dad was a combat veteran.  During WWII he commanded a B-29 Superfortress on bombing missions over Japan.  On one of those missions dad’s plane was shot down and they had to ditch (a controlled landing of a distressed aircraft on water) into the Sea of Japan.  One of his men was killed on impact; the rest escaped as the plane sank.

In the distance, as Japanese destroyers were growing ever closer while executing a patterned search for the downed fliers, dad and his crew were silently spirited to safety, below the surface of the water, when they were rescued by the submarine USS Ronquil.  Meanwhile, back on the base, back at Isley Field on the Island of Saipan, dad’s longtime regular crew, flying that one mission aboard another B-29 to help orient a new pilot, crashed on takeoff killing all aboard. [read more…]

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Dissociation is a term which refers to a complex physical / emotional and psychological process meant to help us cope when we are faced with an overwhelming experience and we don’t  have the resources, support or ability to deal with it on our own.  Chronic Dissociation can interfere with the ability to have a clear sense of  one’s experiences, emotions, behaviors, sensations and thoughts and how all those are meant to fit together to make up a coherent life story.  Dissociation  is a common symptom associated with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and is itself  considered a emotional disorder (Dissociative Disorder). [read more…]

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Shame: Connection VS. Invulnerability

The other day a colleague of mine sent me this TED video featuring vulnerability and shame researcher Brene Brown.  Within a few more days I had heard about Dr. Brown from 5 very different sources.  I’ve learned that when  this happens to me I want to pay attention.   What she has to say rings  very […]

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Induced After Death Communication – IADC – a New Therapy for Healing Grief

I’m writing about a new therapy for grief work called Induced After Death Communication or IADC. I’ve written about EMDR, the psychotherapeutic approach originally developed as a rapid and curative treatment for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder or PTSD. Since its development in the early 1990s the use of EMDR has been expanded as clinicians applied the […]

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HeartMath emWave Technology for a More Coherent Life

In the late 1990′s I read Gregg Braden’s book titled Awakening to Zero Point. In the book Braden mentioned a company named HeartMath ® that was conducting fascinating biofeedback research. Heartmath ® was describing how we can tap into the intelligence of the human heart and by doing so promote greater human consciousness and improve […]

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EMDR for Trauma, Anxiety & Growth

EMDR, also know by its long name - Eye Movement Desensitization & Reprocessing – was first formally taught as a therapeutic approach in the early 1990′s.  Francine Shapiro, Ph.D.,  is credited with the discovery and (ongoing) articulation of EMDR Therapy and she continues to develop the theory behind this fascinating form of psychotherapy.

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