xvi Introduction cooperation. So although PRT procedures can be carefully specified, defined, sequenced, and memorized, they tend to be most effective when administered in the context of a productive therapeutic relationship. Building rapport and communicating an understanding of the client as an individual are essential components—the “delivery system,” if you will—of effective PRT. We hope you will keep this point in mind and recognize that although the procedures in this guide are described in great detail, they are not meant to be presented in a mechanical fashion or in an affectively neutral context. Indeed, if you focus on the techniques of relaxation at the expense of rapport building, you may inadvertently give clients the false impression that the “relaxation exercises” you teach during training sessions should work on their own, like a magical, problem-solving drug. This “medication mentality” may not only discourage clients from exerting the effort neces- sary to practice and successfully utilize PRT but may cast you in the role of an emotionally remote technician who is simply applying a remedial pro- cedure to a malfunctioning system. We hope that, instead, you will use PRT within a positive therapeutic relationship to help your clients develop new skills for dealing with what- ever problems are at hand. Be aware, too, that PRT can facilitate the devel- opment of that relationship. If offered early in a program of psychotherapy, for example, PRT can allow tense or confused clients to calm down enough to organize their thoughts and discuss emotionally volatile material. It may also engender confidence in the therapist’s ability to help. The rapport-building aspect of PRT stems not only from the pleasant experi- ences that it creates but also from the fact that it provides an opportunity for you to actively and clearly communicate your interest in, caring for, and sensitivity to, your clients. It is for this reason that in addition to describing how to conduct PRT, we emphasize the importance of present- ing, explaining, and answering questions about it in a manner that conveys your caring and compassion as well as your optimism about the client’s ability to learn and use it. ACKNOWLEDGMENTS The information contained in this book reflects developments over many decades of clinical practice and research not only by the authors but also by our dear colleague, Dr. Tom Borkovec. Tom’s pioneering work on tailoring PRT and applied relaxation (AR) procedures for people strug- gling with chronic anxiety and worry appears on many pages of this book, as does his original contribution working with Doug Bernstein to develop these procedures in the first place. We are grateful to Tom for his role in
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