The Developmental Needs Meeting Strategy

An Ego State Therapy for Healing Adults
With Childhood Trauma and Attachment Wounds

by Shirley Jean Schmidt, MA, LPC

This book teaches psychotherapists how to apply the DNMS. It provides background material, including a discussion of ego state theory and the practical application of ego state therapy. It outlines detailed protocol steps for establishing Resources, selecting maladaptive introjects for processing, and meeting developmental needs. The final chapter is devoted to handling processing complications and blocks. The appendix provides practice worksheets and forms, and many other supportive materials. Cost $35.00.

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Acclaim for the Book

“This book is a practical step-by-step guide that integrates ego state work, resource tapping, and the latest research on attachment into her DNMS model. There is a wealth of information and creative ideas in this book that therapists can draw from, whether they choose to employ the full DNMS protocols or elements that work best with their clients. This book is a welcome addition to the literature for the treatment of complex trauma and attachment wounds.”

— Laurel Parnell, PhD, EMDR consultant, trainer, and author

“An innovative ego state therapy protocol for healing the wounds of childhood abuse and neglect. The DNMS is an integrative technique, built on contemporary research findings about the effects of insecure attachment and trauma on childhood development. This book provides a detailed method for meeting unmet developmental needs using the client’s own healing resources and resilience, and has much to offer the therapist seeking ways to understand and assist their adult survivor clients.”

— Christine Courtois, PhD, Trauma specialist and author

“This is a creative and compassionate contribution to therapeutic work with those parts of the self – ego states – that embody unprocessed elements of past trauma. Through numerous protocols, the approach presented in this book offers clinicians informative and detailed instructions about how to guide clients through ego-state work toward resolution and resilience. Shirley Jean’s emphasis on healthy aspects of the Adult Self offers an essential focus on present-day competencies and capacities to self-soothe. I recommend this book wholeheartedly!”

— Nancy J. Napier, MA, LMFT, author of Recreating Your Self, Getting
Through the Day
, and Sacred Practices for Conscious Living.

“Congratulations to Shirley Jean for producing a stand-alone book, which instructs the reader in her valuable Developmental Needs Meeting Strategy. But this book is so much more. It is a thought-out compendium of ego state theory and practice that every therapist, of every orientation, should have as a resource in their library. It is well-written, comprehensive, and clear, with great charts, illustrations, and case examples. It’s better than any book of its kind that I’ve read before.”

— David Grand, PhD, Author and developer of Brainspotting

“The DNMS described in this highly readable book provides a creative approach to the healing of attachment wounds. Clinicians will learn how to help clients heal their attachment traumas by following the thoughtfully laid out sequential protocols that Shirley Jean Schmidt has developed. This book includes sections that offer clear explanations about attachment theory, bilateral stimulation and ego states, plus creative illustrations that accompany each step in the protocol. I recommend this book for therapists interested in learning practical approaches to helping clients with unmet attachment needs.”

— Carol Forgash, LCSW, EMDR consultant, trainer, and author

“Shirley Jean brilliantly sets out her groundbreaking therapy in this superb book. In 30 years of doing psychotherapy, I have found nothing that comes close to the DNMS for giving patients relief from troubling childhood experiences. This book clearly shows therapists how to systematically, thoroughly, and gently target presenting complaints, current problems, underlying issues, and childhood traumas. I highly recommend this book.”

— Ginger Enrico, PhD, Private practice therapist

“During the 78 years of my life, I’ve devoted 52 years to the practice of psychotherapy. Down through these years, I’ve had the wonderful personal experience of knowing and being trained by Carl Rogers, Eric Berne, Fritz Pearls, John and Helen Watkins, Mary and Bob Goulding, and Milton Erickson, to name a few. I’m highly impressed with the way this book incorporates the evolution of ego state theory and trance work into the practice of psychotherapy in such a simplistic way that the average layperson can understand and benefit from this treatment approach. I’m simply overwhelmed by Schmidt’s skill in integrating these theories of giants into an outstanding treatment program.”

— Gerald W. Huff, PhD, Private practice therapist

“I have followed Shirley Jean Schmidt’s work for almost twenty years. Her ability to conceptualize and clarify the essential difference between trauma wounding and attachment wounding has had lasting impact on my practice of EMDR. For clinicians new to EMDR, treatment effects can be startling. But sometimes clients fail to respond, or take a turn for the worse, and we have to look beyond the resourcing strategies offered in the basic training. The author makes a clear and cogent case that unmet needs for attachment undermine and destabilize our clients, and that effective resourcing can make the difference between healing and debilitating the client. In a style that is unique to her, Shirley Jean Schmidt offers a framework, a language and a compassionate approach for resourcing our patients. In this text, SJS offers step-by-step interventions, addressing each stage in the process of resource development and implementation. The material is practical and comprehensive, addressing both the potential pitfalls and the adaptive resolutions, with illustrative transcript and detailed analysis. Those of you who commit the time to this volume will enjoy a profound transformation in your ability to work with your most challenging clients.”

—Joan Bacon, MA, EMDR consultant and trauma specialist

“Shirley Jean’s book is an astounding accomplishment – profound in its scope, clarity, innovation, and insight.The DNMS has been of enormous value to my work – providing a comprehensive, skillful, and compassionate method of treatment that effectively heals clients of their unresolved attachment wounds. It has truly revolutionized my clinical practice.”

— Cynthia Engel, LCSW, Private practice therapist.