I am an expert at helping people change how they think, feel and behave. I help people find ways to motivate themselves to change and ways to stay on track once they begin. My specialty is addictions, but I see clients with many different kinds of problems, for example, relationship problems, depression, anxiety and procrastination. I help people figure out what they want to do and then how to go about doing it. My book Managing Addictions: Cognitive, Emotive and Behavioral Techniques outlines techniques to help people feel and do better next week and next year.
I look for ways people have helped themselves change in the past and for ways that they might be willing to use in the future. I offer techniques from various kinds of cognitive-behavioral therapy (for example, ACT, DBT and REBT). All good therapy combines empathy, some exploration of the past so as to better understand why we do what we do, evidence-based, techniques, skillful, mindful ways to help you behave more often in line with your goals and values.
I trained with and worked closely (for over 20 years) with Albert Ellis, the founding father of REBT, one of the first non-psychoanalytic, cognitive-behavioral therapies. I have been married, divorced and remarried (for over twenty-five years) and have raised five children in NYC. Reality and practice have been good teachers.
About F. Michler Bishop
I grew up in a suburb of New York City but moved into the city right after I graduated from Yale. I absolutely love its diversity and intensity. My adventures as a young man had a major role in making me who I am. A job as a deckhand on the Mississippi River was the fulfillment of a dream to follow in Mark Twain’s footsteps. I later worked as a roughneck on an oil rig in Montana and went to Chile on my own at 19, winding up in the iron mines in the northern desert. So, although I teach at a university, I have not spent all my time in an ivory tower.
At 40, I knew I wanted to do something different and more engaging with my life, which meant finishing my PhD (at 42), passing the NYS psychology license, and then two years of post-doctoral training at the Albert Ellis Institute. Ellis had rejected psychoanalysis and created a new form of therapy, focused more on how to help people change. He called it Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy (REBT), an integrative approach and the first truly cognitive-behavioral therapy. CBT and REBT have become the most popular and effective forms of therapy today. Working with Ellis, I learned quickly how to do a more effective form of therapy, and over 20 years had the good fortune to run many groups and workshops with him throughout the country and overseas.
At the same time, I have taught college to a wonderfully diverse, enthusiastic and bright bunch of students at the State University of New York, College at Old Westbury. The introduction of computers, lcd projectors, YouTube and online, hybrid courses have keep such a long, on-going career continuously novel, engaging and often fun.
Right after college, I married, too young, but full of enthusiasm and hope and dreams. That was not sufficient, and divorce followed. The children stayed with me. After too long a time, I finally found a beautiful, life-long partner – and more children followed, with the typical stresses and strains that of families. Although not an AA member, all of this has helped me (or perhaps I should say, forced me) to figure out what I can change and what I had better accept I cannot.
I have been helped along the way by the fact that psychotherapy has changed. Good, effective therapy now focuses on how people can change. The old focus was on insight. Sometimes it worked. Often, it did not. Over the past 25 years, I have studied and learned how to more efficiently help people change and how to help them accept aspects of their lives that they cannot change. It has been and is a challenging, engaging, and enjoyable profession, and I am still learning.