When you read the words "Niagara Falls", what comes to mind?

I just wanted to take the time to thank one of my esteemed colleagues, Dr. Sari Fine Shepphird, PhD for recently blogging about In Vision Concept Cards. A licensed clinical psychologist and eating disorders specialist practicing in Los Angeles, California, she is perhaps best known for authoring 100 Questions & Answers about Anorexia Nervosa, available through Gurze books. Her Treatment Notes blog is an incredibly insightful resource for professionals treating clients who suffer from eating disorders
I found her take on the cards incredibly helpful, as she really brought home the usefulness of the cards and even helped me think about how I speak about and explain the cards in my presentations. While you can read her entire entry here, I found these words of hers particularly illuminating:
When you read the words "Niagara Falls", what comes to mind? Probably an image of a water fall, or of the falls themselves, if you have ever had the opportunity to see them in person. What about the words cotton candy? I am guessing you can picture the fluffy pink blob of sugar on a white stick.
Words and concepts often illicit visual cues, and visual cues are an important part of memory retrieval and learning...remember learning your times-tables on flashcards? There's a reason why flashcards helped with learning and made it easier than just trying to remember the concepts based strictly on auditory memory.
Seeing something helps you learn and remember.
But what about a concept like "Black and White Thinking"? Does an image come to mind? Probably not. Or how about Resilience? How can you explain that concept to a client in a way that is memorable and enhances learning? What about "Proactive versus Reactive"? Ever wished for a concise way to explain these concepts to your clients?
Suzanne Ricklin, MSW, CEDS has devised an innovative, creative, and immensely helpful way to do just that. 
Thanks so much, Sari, for your thoughtful words and support! 



Welcome to my new, In Vision Concept Cards blog. 
Here you will find a variety of information related to my cards - upcoming appearances, unique insights and observations, relevant research, and additional instruction for incorporating these cards in your practice, business or classroom. I'm excited to have this new outlet for communicating and sharing these cards online.

For those of you who may not be familiar with the In Vision Concept Cards, I'd like to begin by providing you a little bit of background as to what they are, how they evolved and how they can be used.

In Vision Concept Cards are a new, innovative adjunct therapy tool and teaching technique designed to assist therapists, educators, life coaches and business professionals illustrate and explore these important concepts with their clients – regardless of what situations they are dealt in life. Utilizing the benefits of combining auditory and visual stimuli
to maximize the learning and retention of new information, these colorful, unique 8½” by 8½”, laminated flashcards are designed to be flexible, memorable and appropriate for use with children ages 9-12, adolescents and adults - male and female alike. Earlier this year, I released Core Set - Volume 1, a diverse sampling of 24 key, fundamental life skills, concepts and themes.

Conceived in the classroom and created for a variety of therapeutic and educational settings, I originally created the cards by hand, one-by-one. In my 25 years of practice as a psychotherapist and counselor, I have created over 150 cards that draw from a variety of influences including books, workshops, professional development, popular culture, my clients and my own personal observations.I find the cards are an interesting, creative way to engage my clients and enhance their ability to learn and retain new information and incorporate new skills into their daily lives.

Regardless of how old we are or where we are in life, we’re bound to face a myriad of situations, stressors, obstacles and opportunities that call for basic life skills that aren’t necessarily taught by our parents or in school. How do we find strength and fortitude in situations that test our limits? How do we learn to believe in ourselves? How can we determine what is normal? How do we balance the pressures of work, culture, and home? How can we improve our relationships? It’s these vital life skills - among them self-confidence, responsibility, coping, decision-making and problem-solving - that In Vision Concept Cards were created to address. Acquiring and building this set of practical skills is essential to our sense of competence, well being and peace of mind. 

I look forward to sharing more information about these cards and welcome your feedback. If there's a question you have, topic you'd like me to elaborate on or information you find relevant to this topic, please feel free to send me an email and I will do my best to address it in an upcoming post.



Suzanne will be speaking about In Vision Concept Cards at these upcoming events:

Building Self-Confidence & Discouraging Bullying:
Using Flashcards to Teach Your Child Important Concepts

West Towson Elementary School
Tuesday, November 16th 2010
7:00 pm - 8:00 pm

In Vision Concept Cards Incorporating Flashcards into Your Practice to Teach Important Life Skills
Family and Children’s Services of Central Maryland
Slayton House,
Columbia, MD 21044
Wednesday, December 15th
12:00 Noon-3:00 pm

iaedp’s 2nd International Forum
Co-Chair & Moderator
“Evidence Base Treatment & Treatment Based Evidence"
Phoenix, Arizona
March 4, 2011

Previous Events:

Ireland’s 3rd International Conference on Eating Disorders
Eating Disorder Resource Center of Ireland (EDRCI)
Dublin, Ireland
October 15, 2010