Internal Family Systems (IFS) also known as “Parts Work” developed by Dr. Richard Schwartz seamlessly blends systems thinking and family systems theory. IFS is a non-pathologising evidence-based, dynamic, holistic, transformative and compassionate model of psychotherapy which offers a powerful way to work with the psyche by identifying its different parts. IFS seeks to differentiate the Self from these other parts most notably managers, firefighters, and exiles and unburden wounded parts facilitating the establishment of a healthy and harmonious internal system that is co-ordinated by the Self.
IFS sets forth the notion that our Vulnerable Parts hold painful emotional states and/or negative beliefs about ourselves due to past wounding experiences. Our Protective Parts seeks to protect our Vulnerable Parts from being activated, thus protect us from being flooded by the pain that our Vulnerable Parts hold, these parts are often in conflict causing clients to feel dis-ease. IFS aims to create internal harmony between all parts of the psyche, enabling and facilitating clients to heal deep-seated emotional wounds. This is achieved by engaging in dialogue with all parts, seeking to understand their functions, points of view, with the aim of facilitating all parts to work together thus creating harmony and wellbeing for one’s whole system.