What is Internal Family Systems (IFS)?


Internal Family Systems (IFS) is an integrative approach to individual psychotherapy. Dr Richard Schwartz, a clinical psychologist in the Chicago area, whose theory is based on the family systems model, developed it. It brings together the best of both worlds, systems thinking and the multiplicity of the mind. It is a very effective model, especially when you may be stuck with reoccurring patterns of behavior such as anxiety, compulsivity, depressive symptoms, unfinished grief, addictions, projection, emotional dependence etc. or when you may simply be looking for more clarity or direction in life. The IFS model is also a great fit for clients who may not be dealing with disturbing or distressing behaviors or emotions but are looking for a deeper sense of knowing who they are and uncover their true potential for life.

IFS has been used with good results to help people in different walks of life; business and medical professionals, stay-at-home moms, college students and many others have benefited from this non-pathologizing creative approach to therapy.

Watershed’s Russ Schulte is one of the state’s only Certified Internal Family Systems Therapists.  He has trained directly under Dr. Schwartz in the most advanced level of training within IFS (level 3) and regularly helps with training as a Program Assistant (PA) in helping other professionals to learn the model.