Counseling Approaches

As a client of Blue Horse Medicine these are the primary therapeutic approaches available. Marla may suggest a specific approach for you depending upon her assessment of your specific needs.

Equine Assisted Psychotherapy

EAP is an experiential therapeutic process that consists of interactions between horses and humans in the natural, outdoor environment.  The emphasis is on the here-and-now relationship between the horse(s) and client(s).  No previous experience with horses is necessary to participate.  The therapeutic process of horse-human interaction takes place largely on the ground, however, mounted work can become a part of your therapy over time. 

See article on EAP at


Dialectical Behavior Therapy

DBT combines the Zen Buddhist philosophical concepts and practices of mindfulness and radical acceptance with scientific behavioral therapy.  This evidence based therapeutic approach was initially developed by Marsha M Linehan, Ph.D at the University of Washington as a treatment for borderline personality disorder.  The “dialectical” in DBT is a term that is defined as “the tension or opposition between two interacting forces or elements.”  In DBT this refers to the ability of two seemingly opposite perspectives to coexist simultaneously, it is a holistic world view that acknowledges the kernel of truth on each side of an argument—similar to the visual Yin/Yang symbol.  When engaging in Dialectical Behavior Therapy we balance acceptance and change strategies.

Over the last 25+ years, DBT has become well known as a very effective therapeutic approach for many mental health issues that are based in emotional dysregulation and failure to control impulses.  The evidence-based model of DBT includes participation in weekly individual therapy and completion of DBT skills training group.  For more information on DBT see “Resources” at

Schema Therapy

A schema is an enduring and troublesome life pattern that can be especially resistant to many traditional interventions. Schema’s are deeply held beliefs that are formed in childhood due to actual interactive experiences.

But it is in adulthood that the dysfunctional nature of our schemas becomes apparent as we are repeatedly drawn into painful and self-defeating patterns. If you’ve been in therapy for many years without positive results or have noticed repetitive destructive patterns in your life, Schema Therapy may be for you.

For more information see

Mindfulness-based Cognitive Therapy

Mindfulness is intentionally living with awareness in the present, without judging, rejecting or developing an attachment to the present moment. Although you may be most familiar with mindfulness as a form of meditation, mindfulness skills can be practiced at anytime, anywhere, while doing anything. Developing mindfulness skills can effectively help one recover from depression, anxiety and several other emotional problems. For more information see


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