Being a teen and learning how to surf anxiety: Integrating narrative methods with cognitive–behavioral therapy

Carla Vale Lucas, Luísa Soares
  • Journal of Poetry Therapy, March 2014, Taylor & Francis
  • DOI: 10.1080/08893675.2014.895489

Being a teenager and coping with anxiety

What is it about?

Adolescence is a challenging stage due to the multiple and rapid changes that occur. In this paper, we present a clinical case of a teen with anxiety and hypochondriac symptoms. The therapeutic intervention involved providing psychoeducation, reducing the excessive focus given to the body, learning and training strategies to cope with anxiety and constructing a life project. In the paper, we also highlight the value of using metaphors as tools in the therapeutic process and the importance of using reading and writing exercises to promote change and adjustment.

Why is it important?

Case studies could have a particular relevance for those who are taking the first steps in counseling area. From a practitioner viewpoint and grounded in the theoretical principles we highlight some considerations of the therapeutic intervention with a teenager, the challenges faced, the efforts made to establish the therapeutic relationship, a key element for the therapeutic outcome, but also the efforts made to adjust the intervention to the particular needs of the client.


Miss Carla Vale Lucas
University of Madeira

Writing this article was a pleasure. It was a unique opportunity to think about the therapeutic process, to identify pros and cons, and to see how in fact was important to use client's interests to help him build a new narrative, thus being better able to "surf anxiety".

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The following have contributed to this page: Miss Carla Vale Lucas