From time to time I’m asked the question, How is IMS different from traditional therapy? It’s kind of like asking, How is jogging different from cycling? They’re both exercises. They’re both good for you. But they each produce different results. And of course, one of them gets you where you want to go faster. People engage in multiple therapeutic modalities: psychoanalysis, cognitive behavior therapy, mindfulness, yoga, the list goes on and on. Each has its own merit, each has its own techniques, and each produces its own results. Traditional psychology can be very effective at identifying behavioral and cognitive patterns, and tends to focus on the roots, or origins, of those patterns. A therapist might focus on exploring past trauma or other emotional damage in order to alter current behaviors or thought patterns.
At IMS, we focus on the nervous system and using internal training practices to gain mastery over how our nervous system responds to challenges. We utilize the relationship between emotions, thoughts, and behaviors in order to rewire the nervous system in ways that create the conditions necessary to produce the results we are looking for. We start by asking, What are we currently doing? What is the pattern or behavior that is being executed? What is the outcome we want to achieve? And what are we currently doing that is never going to achieve that outcome? We get clear on the result that we want, and we focus on the actions we need to adopt in order to bridge the gap from where we are to where we want to go. We don’t focus so much on how our current dynamics came to be, how our patterns became established, but rather how to recognize them, and then train new emotional and mental pattern dynamics that drive action consistently over time. It is those new patterns that will produce the outcomes and results that we aspire to.
I actually began the practice that became IMS after working with a prominent Los Angeles based psychologist named Dr. LaWanda Katzman Staenerg, or as she preferred, Dr. Lu. Dr. Lu’s daughter, who had access to top-notch health professionals, wasn’t able to get the results she was looking for. Over a very short period of time, a matter of just a few months, I was able to train her inside of the IMS techniques and we achieved the outcomes she hadn’t been able to find anywhere else. Dr. Lu was surprised by the speed and efficiency with which we found success and was curious about my techniques. I shared with Dr. Lu the modalities of IM training and she, in turn, shared with me her psychological principles and methods. It wasn’t long before she started referring clients to me, especially some of the more challenging cases where traditional techniques weren’t achieving the desired results. That was the beginning of a vibrant private practice that then led to weekend programs and the Inner Matrix book.
As we’ve grown, we have attracted many psychologists as clients who have found value in adding our tools, techniques, and strategies to their practices. We currently have three psychologists who have gone through our Apprentice program to become certified Trainers in the IM Method. Of course there is great value in therapy and there are exceptional therapists. What we find is that through our direct training of the nervous system, we can often get more dramatic results in a much shorter period of time. The work we do in 3 days at an IM Reset or IM Evolution, or in 2 days at a Power Series Weekend Intensive can create emotional and behavioral shifts that may take a decade or longer to achieve with traditional therapies.