Psychotherapist Rick Scott PhD talks about his approach to Ketamine Assisted Psychotherapy, Psychedelics, healing anxiety, depression and PTSD; and working with CIT Clinics.
I'm Rick Scott, officially William Scott on my website and all my professional stuff. I have a PhD in psychology, Masters and Specialist degree in counseling and so I'm a psychotherapist in mill valley private practice and I've been doing it for 30 years.
I do individual couple therapy, very systemic in terms of the way I think, so I'll mix the modes up depending on what the needs are. The target audience really is kind of mixed, they'll do a lot of coaching stuff too don't really use too much of the traditional DSM stuff I really look at people as very everybody's got stuff there's a lot of condition to go through, and so I really look at myself as sort of deconditioning-reconditioning.
So I've had some exposure to psychedelics, both personally and professionally for about five years. Ketamine was the latest to come into my practice but since it's legal in California it's really exploded, but like the other psychedelics, it does a number of things. I use it for depression, anxiety, trauma. It really has a way of releasing pain, stored pain so it's very effective for trauma release. The other way it's being used more and more is really just as a way to expand one's conscious self, so you know from my work we're very patterned, very conditioned, anything that loosens up that pattern physiologically and otherwise is really helpful. Ketamine opens up potential not unlike the neuroplastic part of it so it'll diminish patterns, reduce pain, and then open possibilities and the thing about Ketamine is it really sort of bypasses the prefrontal cortex. I mean so people are trying to think their way out of everything, if I can reduce that and sort of get around behind it then I can really often release a lot of the condition that's more subconscious and then come back to the cognitive pieces of it.
So first of all you have to have a therapeutic alliance. So therapy requires that, that alliance is already built so we've already done and typically before I come into a ketamine session I've done a lot of other types of work. So people will do emdr, somatic experience parts work, so it'll be a model for uh therapy already established and then I bring that into the Ketamine sessions right. So we'll set up in advance sort of what the person's working on and then there's sort of the set and setting pieces of the ketamine session that are really important.
It just depends, we're not really in control of the way the session goes so there's a big part of establishing an intention or a direction and then allowing the medicine to do what it does. So sometimes I'll be sitting in a session there won't be a word some people will be very internal and then there's a serious processing and consolidation piece that happens after it. Some people are very talkative they'll go into parts and they'll just start releasing things I don't find it very helpful to really engage too much. I can facilitate or direct it depending on what their intention is, but really the internal process is more important right. I record them I'll take notes as I'm going through them so that we can process them afterward but every session with the ketamine is different there are no two that are the same.
One thing I experienced with Ketamine that is different for some is it seems like people who have deeper conditions maybe like, seal team guys who really have a high tolerance for pain they're harder or it's harder for them to let go of control, and so a big part of Ketamine is being able to let go of that ego part is really in control of things. So I have a few clients who are very like that are harder to get out but once, they do those sessions are usually very internal, and then the processing the plastic part sort of plays itself out after the fact. I have had people who have had trauma and they haven't been able to access the trauma with talk therapy or emdr more classic types of treatment for trauma who go into a ketamine session and their consciousness descends right to the trauma and it does it in a way that's more compassionate. I think it really is more of awareness, it releases cognition and pattern and it allows a person's awareness whatever you want to call that, to access these deeper parts of condition that are sort of in the way of growth and kind of dissolve them. It really kind of helps to loosen them and dissolve them so I've had a lot of success with ketamine I've only had one experience where there was a little dehydration or something but that was remediated but the sessions I have. I've done, here, at least 20 sessions with five different clients maybe and they've all been very positive, the outcomes have been very positive.
There's a lot of Ketamine out there, I mean people are doing it through various online, they do lozenges so I got exposure to all of that. The reason I come here is it's very professional, it's super compassionate, it's set up we have a nurse, we have the anesthesiology and the setting is already perfect the music even is already ready to go and then if anything goes it's a setting that provides a lot of trustworthiness. So for a person to let go on a psychedelic, like on a dissociative anesthetic like ketamine they have to really feel comfortable they have to really trust where they are. So that's the biggest part coming here, plus the IV versus lozenge IM (Intramuscular Injection) Much more regulated right, and plus then you're getting the vitamins and the rest of it. It's just a really comfortable professional place to do it you know, there's no nowhere else around that I know like that, I do some stuff with people who do lozenges and it's not the same.
I think everybody feels a little nervous when they're identifying themselves differently, you know you look at the world of form and see your body and this is Oli and that's who you know and then all of a sudden you do a session and that's not who you are. It's a little bit like knowing yourself as an energetic form or something that is other than just ego just form-based. So i say, establish a relationship with somebody in a therapeutic way that you're comfortable with and ask them up front you know, there's a lot of people practicing around in California associated with maps or various other organizations that are really exploring psychedelic medicine and they're great, there are some great ones around. Get a relationship going and depending on how they use it right I mean some people are doing it in the office and otherwise, you've got to trust you know you've got to let go into it if you can't do that, it's going to be very difficult to do.
Mdma, Ketamine, Psilocybin, Ayahuasca, moving into these types of medicines is really pushing the evolution of our consciousness forward. I have a Ph.D. in psychology, a Master's, and a Specialist degree in counseling and I've been doing it for 30 years. Less separateness more connectedness, so that's what these substances are really doing, both connection to self beyond the pain that we carry conditioned pain which everybody has and then more connected with the world. So that's what I primarily you know that's my orientation and so a lot of people are using it to expand their consciousness not because they're depressed or they're anxious or they have some mental illness most of the time I mean I think it's expanding well beyond that already and a lot of people in my practice that's what they're looking for. You can't really do that in your office, you know you don't have that kind of staff necessarily. I think it's probably if you're starting out you want to be fully supported, I wouldn't do it with somebody one-on-one first not for a while.
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