Our book on short term interventions

Lyhytterapeuttinen työote -kirjan kansi

We wrote a book to mental health professionals about how to do short term interventions. We wanted the book to be a really “how to do it”, a practical guide, without devaluating the readers’ need for solid background theory. The book is for new clinicians who find concrete answers to how to do this and that. But the book is also for clinicians who are interested to learn what new evidence is there for what works in therapy and how this could look in your practice.

The book is integrative and evidence-based, calling for tailor-made interventions. We place great emphasis on how you do a case formulation. This is not a manual, yet we give models for how interventions of different lenghts could approximately look like. We give lots of concrete examples throughout the book. 

Part 1

In part 1 we describe the rationale and motivation of doing short term interventions, when can they be done. We describe what cognitive-analytical theory (CAT) is. CAT comes originally from UK, from Tony Ryle and is an integrative, innovative and evolving therapy model. We strive to use language that is understandable and give lots of exaples to illustrate the terms. Our book is the first CAT book in Finnish.

Part 2

In part 2 we describe how the whole process approximately looks like in different lenghts of interventions. We also describe how individual sessions can be built up.We describe how the beginning, middle and ending phases look like and what the clinician should approximately be doing during each phase. For each phase we present also techniques with case examples. The whole book is built upon the importance of good case conceptualization and how it shows in different phases of intervention. We strive to show the thinking that goes on in the clinician’s head and how and what is shared with the client. We describe the use of mapping and the use of letters both in the reformulation phase and in the ending phase of intervention. To our knowledge, this is the first book where the process of mapping is described in detail. All CAT methods strive to find repeating problematic ways of relating (to oneself, others, life…). CAT goes beyond the surface. 

We also present how to evaluate the success of therapy during the process and in the end.  

Part 3

In the last part we deal with the therapeutic relationship. We discuss and give examples of being authentic and neutral, how to build alliance and deal with ruptures. Throughout the book, the ideas presented are often an integration combining ideas from many theoreticians and researchers. We also have a section on clinicians well being and ongoing growth as Liisa, one of the authors, has a long experience from work psychology.  

Who we are



Katri Kanninen

I just love to follow how people find their own ways to be clinicians! I really like both teaching and supervising. I have worked with professionals from different sectors: social work, family work, kindergarten, psychologists and psychotherapists. Now I work half time as a clinical lecturer at the department of psychology teaching psychotherapeutic skills. I did my PhD in 2005 and the researcher in me is still very much alive beside my clinician self.

We met with Liisa when we studied our 7-year long journey to become psychotherapy trainers. First we became psychotherapists, and later continued into becoming trainers. By now we have behind us two 4-year long psychotherapy trainings. Finally it just felt that all we had learned during the years and in our enthusiastic discussions needed to be written into a joint book.


I like learning new things and being able to be in the beginner mode. Last year I started horseriding and rollerskating. This year gymnastics. Believe me, this gives great opportunities for not knowing and not being able! Lots of my time goes to my family, kids and their hobbies. A great way to relax!


I work in Finnish, English and in Swedish.


Liisa Uusitalo-Arola

I am originally a work and organizational psychologist, but after many developments ended up becoming a psychotherapist and psychotherapist trainer. As a work psychologist I always approach client work from the worker’s perspective making sure work stays inspiring and of healthy proportions. I love to integrate things, say things simply and make theory alive.

For the past 13 years I have worked in private practice working with therapy, as work psychologist and as a trainer.

A craftmanship is always present in whatever I do, whether it is writing or binding a book! This year I am actually going to do a degree on bookbinding. I have a great need for quiet doing and reflection. Bookbinding matches my desire for this.  My need for reflection in turn shows in my liking of blogs, both writing and reading them.


I work in Finnish and English. I also do therapies in Swedish.



Contact us

tel.+358 40 7417795 / Katri Kanninen
tel. +35840 7791829 / Liisa Uusitalo-Arola

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