Talk about an idea worth spreading. The Dual Therapist Model was the topic of a recent TEDx talk November 10th at Northampton Community College in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. Dr. Michele Kinderman and Dr. Kelly Yanek presented “The Dual Therapist Model: A revolutionary new approach to healing and wellness for clinician and client” as part of the independently organized TEDx event which included a series of live speakers meant to spark deep discussion and connection.

With their innovative method, the two psychotherapists conduct all client sessions together. This approach enables the therapists to model communication, friendship, humor, connectedness, and trust during each session. It also provides the therapists with a built-in support system where they can process their thoughts and feelings with each other at the end of the day. They are friends who have fun together and truly enjoy each other’s company. Their message is that it’s not just revolutionizing the field of mental health, but it promotes a specific approach to being in the world.

“It’s a way to bring joy into your everyday life,” Dr. Kinderman says. “Don’t just save fun for the weekends or your downtime. Figure out what makes you happy and incorporate it into your day-to-day functioning. Do paperwork at the beach. Listen to music. Take a walk at lunch.”

“We came upon something that hasn’t been done before in our field,” Dr. Yanek says. “We’re challenging people to go out and find creative ways to do that in their own lives, however that may look for them. Whether it’s someone who’s got their own small business, somebody in a corporate environment, teachers or stay-at-home parents; think more creatively and outside the box, take some risks to enhance your life and make it more of what you would like it to be.”

Says Dr. Kinderman: “Just like misery can breed misery, joy can breed joy.”

Dr. Kinderman is a clinical psychologist who earned her Doctor of Philosophy degree from the California School of Professional Psychology. Dr. Yanek is a school psychologist who earned her Doctor of Psychology degree from the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine.

After experiencing burnout in their prior jobs, the two friends joined forces to challenge industry norms and develop an approach to psychotherapy that highlights human connection and prevents therapist burnout. Via the Dual Therapist Model, the doctors have achieved unprecedented success in fostering personal growth and well-being for themselves and their clients. They own and operate Wellness Outside the Box – Therapy Redefined in Princeton, New Jersey, where they combine evidence-based psychotherapy tools and techniques with nature, movement, and mindfulness on a 20-acre farm with a pond, hiking trails, and farm animals.