Michelle Bohls is passionate about redefining how our society understands Highly Intuitive People (HIP) while helping them harness their gifts for creativity, innovation, empathy, and healing others.
Highly Intuitive People frequently seek psychotherapy for a similar cluster of symptoms:
- an early experience of feeling different from those around us
- feeling anxious and emotionally overwhelmed
- frustration from having set extraordinarily high standards for ourselves
- critical self talk
- destructive behaviors with food, cutting, alcohol, sex, porn, work, or drugs
- a tendency to feel we are stuck or behind where we should be in our life
- chronic lateness and disorganization
- significant fears of being an impostor or exposed as a fraud
Most of us recall being told that we were too sensitive, day dreamers, or worse.
All too often Highly Intuitive People (HIP) are diagnosed with labels that harm our self concept as children or teens: learning disabilities like dyslexia, ADD/ADHD, anxiety, obsession or bipolar disorders. The Highly Intuitive Person is often deeply misunderstood and pathologized in our western culture.
– The Highly Intuitive Person in Love and at Work
– The Hero's Journey of the Intuitive Mind: Thriving in a world biased
for the logical and linear
– Working with Intuitive Couples: Improving Affect Regulation
– Love Me Dearly: Narcissism, Shame, and Fantasy in Relationships
Speaking engagements can be adapted to your organizations' focus and needs including the length of the presentation and experiential components.
Below are examples of presentations given:
The Hero's Journey of the Intuitive Mind: Thriving in a world biased for the logical and linear
Using a bit of mythology and themes from Joseph Campbell's concepts of The Hero’s Journey, participants will explore a deeper understanding of how as intuitive people we were deeply invalidated by a cultural bias for logical and linear thinking, the resulting harm to our psyche and esteem, and how we can reclaim our birthright to inner wisdom and wholeness. (Presented in Prezi for Creativity and Madness in Prague, 2014 and Santa Fe in 2016).
- Explain the basic idea of Joseph Campbell’s Monomyth and understand how and why the Hero’s Journey becomes enacted in the lives of intuitive and creative people
- Compare a positive definition for intuition with a definition of logical thinking and typically biased definitions for intuition found in the dictionary
- List the Nine Traits of An Intuitive Mind
- Explain how "The Invalidation Wound: happens, how it affects intuitive people, and why it leads to the cluster of systems typically seen in highly intuitive and creative people who present for treatment
The Highly Intuitive Person in Love and at Work
The highly intuitive person can struggle to overcome emotional blocks, which are often rooted in anxiety, shame, and other overwhelming feelings that affect both the individual’s work and their personal relationships. Participants will learn about the nine traits of an intuitive mind and how these traits can affect our ability to work and have satisfying relationships. (Presented for Wisdom at Work in 2012 and in Power Point the Austin Association for Marriage and Family Therapy in 2013)
Working with Intuitive Couples: Improving Affect Regulation
Intuitive people sense their partner’s emotional disregulation and are triggered more easily than other personality types, challenging their ability to use communication tools both inside and outside of therapy sessions. Their emotional sensitivity is a gift, but it can challenge couples who do not have the tools to facilitate their own affect regulation. (Presented in Prezi for Imago Relationships International in New Orleans, 2013)
- Compare a positive definition for intuition with a definition of logical thinking
and typically biased definitions for intuition found in the dictionary
- List the Nine Traits of An Intuitive Mind
- Understand how Intuitive people hear and experience the energy, tone, and emotions of others
- Learn three techniques (i.e., emotional labeling) to facilitate affect regulation.
Love Me Dearly: Narcissism, Shame, and Fantasy in Relationships
Narcissism stumps many of us whether it shows up in our medical and psychological treatment rooms or in our personal lives, but there is no need to pathologize the individuals who struggle with narcissism or those who love them.
When a child’s world view, sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression does not conform to the norms of their family or community they are more likely to experience a profound “invalidation wound” that may drive them to seek external validation, or tangible proof of one’s worth. A character defense people have called narcissism seeks this validation through fame, money, attention, and other types of narcissistic supplies. The co-dependent or co-narcissist also seeks validation, but frequently through a dependance on the narcissist or the relationship with them. We will explore how these two adaptations play out in a relationship, particularly in what has been called a narcissistic trance. Presented to the Contemporary Relationships Conference in May, 2017.
- Explain The Invalidation Wound and how it affects those people marginalized by those in authority
- Give an example of at least two of the four types of adaptations to the invalidation wound
- Explain narcissistic supplies and the narcissistic trance
- Demonstrate one of four techniques that will improve our effectiveness in the both treatment room and in our personal relationships
Greed, Shame, Deprivation, Vulnerability and Envy: Let's Talk About Money In Group
In this workshop we present a theoretical framework for conceptualizing money from an affective perspective. We discuss treatment guidelines and ways of dealing with the intense countertransference that inevitably occurs in the therapist when working with group members around this topic. This workshop includes both didactic and experiential components. (Presented at AGPA American Group Psychotherapy Association in New York, 2017.
- Identify the primitive feelings evoked in the group therapist and group members when the subject of money arises including greed, vulnerability, deprivation, shame, and envy.
- Describe techniques to facilitate group members speaking in detail about money and understand some of the resistances group members may be faced with when asked to speak about money
- Create an environment that allows for the affect around money to be metabolized
- Identify some of the ethical issues involved around money in group therapy
Michelle Bohls, LMFT, EMDR, CGP
Michelle’s mission in life is to help the world awaken and reclaim the gifts of the intuitive mind. In her Austin-based private practice, Michelle specializes in working with all types of artists, entrepreneurs, healers, and other highly intuitive and creative people in their struggles to overcome emotional blocks, which are often rooted in anxiety, shame, and other overwhelming feelings that affect both the individual’s work and their personal relationships. In addition to individual therapy and couples' work she runs two long-term process therapy groups.
Michelle maintains a certification in EMDR, membership in the American Group Psychotherapy Association as a Certified Group Psychotherapist (CGP), and membership with Imago Relationships International as Certified Imago Couple’s therapist (CIT) and as a Getting The Love You Want Weekend Workshop presenter.
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