By Dr. J. Stuart Ablon 

Changeable: How Collaborative Problem Solving Changes Lives at Home, at School, and at Work 

A bold new way to help anyone change

Why is it so hard to change problem behavior—in our kids, our colleagues, and even ourselves? Conventional methods often backfire, creating a downward spiral of resentment and frustration, and a missed opportunity for growth. What if the thinking behind these old methods is wrong? What if people don’t misbehave because they want to, but because they lack the skills to do better? Or as renowned psychologist J. Stuart Ablon asks, what if changing problem behavior is a matter of skill, not will?

Based on more than twenty-five years of clinical work with juvenile offenders as well as training parents, teachers, counselors and law enforcement, and supported by research in neuroscience, Changeable presents a radical new way of thinking about challenging and unwanted behavior — Collaborative Problem Solving – that builds empathy, helps others reach their full potential, and most of all really works.

With illuminating scientific evidence, remarkable success stories, and actionable insights, Changeable gives parents, teachers, CEOs and anyone interested in learning about why we behave the way we do a roadmap for helping people grow.

Praise for Changeable

“Changeable is a great book. Dr. Ablon addresses the most challenging aspect of human interaction – how to engage with another person to effectively help them change. This is the key task of a parent, coach, teacher, supervisor, therapist – just about any human-to-human interaction involves change. The clear and compelling way that Dr. Ablon outlines the Collaborative Problem Solving process will be a revelation. Using the principles outlined in Changeable will shift the way you understand and interact with others–and the impact may just change your life.”
—Bruce D. Perry, M.D., Ph.D., Senior Fellow, The ChildTrauma Academy, and bestselling author of The Boy Who Was Raised as a Dog
“We’ve trained thousands of our staff in states across the country to use the Collaborative Problem Solving model as a way to reach children with the most severe emotional and behavioral problems–children who were simply unreachable before. It’s a clinical approach and parenting model, but we’ve also found the ideas and proven strategies of CPS can be applied anywhere there is a need to develop and grow people in a way that enhances skills. CPS has become an important staff development tool in addition to serving as one of our primary clinical approaches for helping thousands of children and families each year.”
—Patrick W. Lawler, CEO of Youth Villages
“Reaching our full potential requires opening ourselves up to change—even when it’s uncomfortable and scary, or seems impossible. The insights in this engaging book shed light on the real obstacles to change, and how we can overcome them – in ourselves and others. An empowering read.”
—Susan David, PhD, bestselling author of Emotional Agility
“Each of us has the potential to learn new skills, regardless of how we’ve been labeled or judged by others. In this empowering book, Stuart Ablon shows how helping others work past their struggles to learn and grow can yield powerful results.”
—Scott Barry Kaufman, PhD, author of Twice Exceptional and Ungifted, and co-author of Wired to Create
“Changeable is a hopeful, accessible and essential book about the infinite power of human beings to change. I wish I could put this book in the hands of everyone who is struggling with how to help someone with their behavior.”
—Vanessa Diffenbaugh, author of The Language of Flowers
“Dr. Ablon has provided us with a clear and compelling roadmap of how to employ the Collaborative Problem Solving method, which will help parents, teachers, and clinicians to work with, not against, our children in crafting individualized strategies to encourage positive emotional and cognitive development while decreasing disruptive behavior. Thank you, Dr. Ablon, for this highly valuable contribution!”
—Jess P. Shatkin, MD, MPH, Professor of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Pediatrics, NYU School of Medicine, and author of Born to Be Wild
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