Christy Matta

By Saleem Rana

Interview by Allen Cardoza and Logan Clarke
July 30, 2012

The Answers for the Family radio show on LA Talk Radio began with host Allen Cardoza briefly talking to Logan Clarke about his latest endeavor, Teardrop Tree.  Logan explained that a Teardrop Tree is a gift for someone in mourning. It is accompanied by a book on the story behind the tree.  This symbolic tree not only offers condolences but the fable of the Teardrop Tree also invites the recipient to embark on a healing journey.  Allen then invited Logan to co-host the rest of the show with him on the topic of stress management with guest, Christy Matta.

Christy has been a clinician, trainer, and administrator in the field of mental health for more than twenty years.  She has specialized in working with people who have emotional and behavioral problems using dialectical behavior therapy (DBT). Her latest book, “The Stress Response” shows readers how to use DBT to free themselves from symptoms of stress like anxiety, worry, and anger. Besides providing DBT clinical supervision to clinicians in residential programs, she has also been a DBT trainer and has spokein nationally on the topic of exactly how DBT can help with chronic stress and other psychological issues.

Christy explained the role of stress in our lives and the complications that arise from chronic stress. Sometimes stress can motive us to complete tasks or to overcome danger.  At other time, it can become chronic. Chronic stress results in constant hypervigilance and overreaction to minor situations.  Left unchecked, unmitigated stress can trigger psychological disorders and physical illness.

Using DBT strategies can help those prone to negative responses to stress to change their lives.  A DBT therapist will invite clients to explore their personal stress reactions and practice new methods to solving the problems that trigger stress.  DBT offers strategies for interpersonal issues, emotional regulation, and thought management to help cope with stressful life situations.  It is especially useful in a crisis situation —like a serious illness, for example—because it can help someone get distance from a personal crisis, regroup, and come back to work on creating positive change.

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