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FRAME:S[1] is a psychological therapeutic model developed by Staffan Garpebring. The model is built around a psychoeducational practice focused on treating common stress related problems youth experience in their daily life. FRAME:S have roots in a mix of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, Gestalt therapy and Systemic Therapy.


The model points out the circular (reciprocal) connections between perceptions (listening, looking, perceptions of the body etc), physiological reactions of the body, acting, thinking, feeling and self-perceptions, such as when you think certain thoughts you become sad and vice versa - when you are sad you think certain thoughts.

FRAMES is an abbreviation where each letter stands for a certain aspect of the psyché. To sum it up: Our experiences can be described in the following components: (F) Focus-formation in attention towards various outer phenomena and inner, physiological states(selective perception) (R) Reactions in the body (physiology; hormones etc) (A) Actions (behaviour, attitude) (M) Mental conceptions (”mental action”) (E) Emotions and (S) Self awareness. Accordingly, we can denote every experience as a FRAME. – FRAMES gradually give rise to self awareness. Dialectic FRAMES Therapy; a mix of Gestalt Therapy, Cognitive Behaviour Therapy and Systemic Family Therapy, is based on the formula: O – [ FRAMES ] – EO. O stands for ”Outer situation” including other people’s FRAMES. EO stands for effects of FRAMES in the outer situation. A person’s behaviour and attitude mutually interact with that person’s circumstantial conditions. Dialectic from Greek (dialegein) means take apart. Dialectic FRAMES Therapy means to take apart – to analyze interaction within a person’s FRAMES, and between different persons’ FRAMES. A vast majority of FRAMES eventually become automatic due to repetitive learning. Some FRAMES contribute to happiness, joy and pleasure whilst others involve stress, sorrow and anxiety. When arousal in the body is high it can narrow our attention span drastically. Tunnel vision and filtered listening is an essential phenomenon at catastrophic thinking as well as mania. (from "Stress Reflexes reflecting and affecting Perception of Life" by Staffan Garpebring)

Further readingEdit

  • Staffan Garpebring, FRAME:S - en psykologisk rammodell, Books on demand (June, 2004) ISBN 91-631-4832-3
  • Staffan Garpebring, "Stressreflexer och Tankefällor". Books on Demand (2008) ISBN 91-85925-22-5
  • Staffan Garpebring, Stress Reflexes reflecting and affecting Perception of Life, Books on Demand (2010) ISBN 978-91-86193-41-6


Staffan Garpebring, Stress Reflexes reflecting and affecting Perception of Life, Books on Demand (2010) ISBN 978-91-86193-41-6

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