Coherence Therapy

The art & science of lasting change

Coherence Psychology Institute information »


Upcoming Workshops
Click here »

A therapist's guide to utilizing
memory reconsolidation,
the brain's built-in process
of profound change



"Unlocking the Emotional Brain is destined to be a landmark publication….I'm sensing an emerging consensus in the field of psychotherapy….I think memory reconsolidation and this book could be the hub around which the various approaches unite.…itıs essential reading for therapists of all stripes…"
David Van Nuys, PhD, Emeritus Professor of Psychology,
Sonoma State University


Free downloads:
  Chapter 1 »
  Psychotherapy Networker feature article adapted from book »
Co-author Bruce Ecker, LMFT describes book in:
  7-minute YouTube video »
  audio interview on Shrink Rap Radio »


Psychotherapy Training Program
Click here to learn more »

New to Coherence Therapy?

Coherence Therapy, formerly known as Depth Oriented Brief Therapy, is a system of experiential, empathic psychotherapy that enables therapists to consistently foster deep, lasting shifts, dispelling clients’ symptoms at their emotional roots often in a relatively small number of sessions. The steps of Coherence Therapy carry out the process of memory reconsolidation identified by brain researchers. Understanding reconsolidation shows us exactly what gives new therapeutic experiences the potency to actually replace and erase entrenched, unwanted behaviors, beliefs and states of mind.
Learn more about Coherence Therapy »
Index of Coherence Therapy learning resources »

other special resources:

interview Is It Always About Attachment? No, it isn't, as Bruce Ecker explains to Psychotherapy Networker editor Rich Simon in this lively interview, and he paints a vivid picture of how therapists can determine accurately whether attachment issues underlie a given client's problem patterns. To see just a few excerpts from the full interview, click here. For the full interview, including two Coherence Therapy case examples, click here.

ce courses  Coherence Therapy on APA website Two Coherence Therapy CE courses in multimedia format are available on the American Psychological Association website. These courses originally were live introductory workshops presented by Bruce Ecker and Sara Bridges.
» Profound Change in Psychotherapy: Using Coherence Therapy to Reliably Create Deep Breakthroughs (CE = 2 hours)
» Coherence Therapy: Swift Change at the Core of Emotional Truth (CE = 6 hours)

interview Online Interview: Bruce Ecker on Reconsolidation and Coherence Therapy The Mental Help Net website's second interview of Bruce Ecker focuses on neuroscientists' breakthrough research on reconsolidation, with big implications for psychotherapy. For podcast and transcript, click here. For the previous interview, which looks closely at how profound change of emotional and behavioral responses takes place, click here.

research Press Release: Psychotherapists and Neuroscientists Independently Discover... After a breakthrough demonstration of reconsolidation was reported by neuroscientists in the research journal Nature, a related press release from the Coherence Psychology Institute began, "A process identified by psychotherapists in their therapy sessions, and subsequently discovered independently by neuroscientists in lab studies with animals, has now been used by neuroscientists to erase a fear reaction in human subjects. ..." To read more, click here.

article “The Brain's Rules for Change” The Jan-Feb 2010 issue of Psychotherapy Networker featured this article by Bruce Ecker on how therapists can utilize reconsolidation, the brain’s built-in process for actually deleting an unwanted emotional response learned earlier in life. This process allows a new learning to rewrite and erase the original one. Read about how the steps of the process were first identified clinically in the development of Coherence Therapy in the early 1990s, and subsequently were discovered independently by neuroscientists using very different methods. A case example illustrates the art that implements the science.  Download reprint»

FAQ Reconsolidation FAQ This FAQ page addresses everything you ever wanted to clear up about how reconsolidation works and how the process now identified by neuroscientists for dispelling emotional conditioning through reconsolidation is the heart of the methodology of Coherence Therapy. Click here.

article “Coherence Therapy: Swift Change at the Core of Symptom Production” Through a close look at a session for a compulsive eating and weight problem, experiential and neuropsychological descriptions of Coherence Therapy are provided by Bruce Ecker & Laurel Hulley in this chapter from Studies in Meaning 3 (Jonathan D. Raskin & Sara K. Bridges, Eds., Pace University Press, 2008). More info»

article “Of Neurons and Knowings” The first of a three-article series by Brian Toomey and Bruce Ecker on the brain science supporting Coherence Therapy in the Journal of Constructivist Psychology.  Subtitle: Constructivism, Coherence Psychology and their Neurodynamic Substrates.  Download reprint»

article “Depotentiation of Symptom-Producing Implicit Memory in Coherence Therapy ” In their second article in the Journal of Constructivist Psychology, Ecker & Toomey provide a detailed study of correspondences between known mechanisms of synaptic change in the brain and the psychological processes of change in Coherence Therapy. Covers the dissolution of ingrained emotional conditioning through the process of reconsolidation of implicit memory circuits.  Download reprint»

talk “The Effectiveness of Psychotherapy: Constructivism to the Rescue!” This 90-minute conference keynote address by Bruce Ecker takes a fresh look at the psychotherapy field’s own “chronic symptom” of capped, moderate efficacy and explains the clinical and neurobiological evidence for why Coherence Therapy may have what it takes to break the efficacy barrier.  More info»

“It is a bold vision… as conceptually strong as it is compassionate… I wholeheartedly recommend Coherence Therapy as the most compelling incarnation of clinical constructivism on the contemporary scene.” Robert A. Neimeyer, Ph.D., Editor, Journal of Constructivist Psychology

“A brilliant breakthrough… Accessible, nonpathologizing language, sophisticated yet profoundly simple theory, and powerful therapeutic process combine to make this work of the highest significance.  I have rarely been this impressed.” Stephen M. Johnson, Ph.D., author of Character Styles, Characterological Transformation & other titles

“A challenging, precise, exciting approach… combine[s] a thoughtful attention to the unconscious with a commitment to making every session count.  Gutsy, convincing and powerful!” David B. Waters, Ph.D., Professor of Family Practice & Psychiatry, University of Virginia, author of Competence, Courage and Change

Join the Email Discussion Group

For therapists, counselors,
teachers, researchers.

Scope of discussion has expanded to include, along with Coherence Therapy, the areas covered in Unlocking the Emotional Brain:
how deep, lasting therapeutic change
occurs through memory reconsolidation;
various systems of therapy discussed for
how they do, or do not, fulfill the brain's requirements for memory reconsolidation;
and how reconsolidation advances our understanding of psychotherapy integration, attachment work, and specific versus
common factors.
Click here for more info»



Coherence Therapy Resource Index

Our index of Coherence Therapy learning resources now is keyed to training level,
and it's one click away»



Index of Published
Coherence Therapy Case Studies

Close scrutiny of case examples is one of the best ways to learn Coherence Therapy. This pdf file is a one-click download in which you'll find a listing of the full collection organized by symptom.   Download»



Equivalent terms in
Coherence Therapy

Phrases for some key concepts have kept evolving, so there are now several alternate, synonymous terms used in the various writings on Coherence Therapy. This list of equivalent phrases will avoid any confusion.   Download»



The Neuropsychotherapist
Website, Magazine & Journal

NPT is a rich, major resource devoted to providing therapists with emerging knowledge for practicing neurobiologically informed therapy within a biopsychosocial framework. Bruce Ecker is on the NPT Panel of Experts and is a regular contributor. Visit now»