What are the 8 c’s of internal family systems?


The “8 C’s” of Internal Family Systems (IFS) represent a foundational framework within the realm of IFS therapy. Developed by Dr. Richard Schwartz, IFS is a therapeutic approach that delves into the intricate interplay of a person’s internal system, consisting of various parts that embody different facets of their personality, emotions, and experiences. These “8 C’s” are essential principles that guide the IFS therapeutic process, offering insight and guidance to both therapists and clients.


Curiosity is a cornerstone of IFS, encouraging therapists and clients to embark on an exploration of their internal worlds. This involves fostering an open and non-judgmental attitude towards the myriad parts within. It prompts questions and a genuine desire to comprehend and embrace the multifaceted aspects of the self.


At the heart of IFS lies compassion, a vital element that urges individuals to approach every facet of themselves with boundless kindness and empathy. It entails treating inner parts as though they were wounded or vulnerable individuals in need of care and understanding. Compassion forms the basis for healing and reconciliation within the internal system.


IFS recognizes the significance of courage in the therapeutic journey. It involves the willingness to confront and engage with the often challenging and painful emotions and experiences that reside within one’s internal system. This courageous approach leads to transformative shifts and growth, as individuals take risks in therapy to facilitate healing.


Clarity within the context of IFS refers to the therapist’s role in aiding clients to gain insight into their internal dynamics. It involves unraveling the complexities of how different parts function, helping clients make sense of their inner world, and identifying recurring patterns that impact their lives.


Connectedness emphasizes the profound importance of building a robust therapeutic relationship between the client and therapist. This connection serves as a foundation for the healing process, fostering trust and understanding. Additionally, it involves assisting clients in forging connections with and integrating their diverse inner parts.


Confidence in the context of IFS signifies the belief that healing and transformation are attainable. Therapists instill confidence in clients by affirming their inner resources and their capacity to navigate the intricacies of their internal system. This belief in the potential for healing fuels the therapeutic journey.


Creativity is encouraged within IFS as a means of exploring innovative ways to work with and relate to internal parts. It involves thinking beyond conventional approaches and employing creative techniques in therapy, fostering new avenues for healing and growth.


Commitment underscores the shared dedication of both therapist and client to the therapeutic process. It embodies a mutual commitment to the pursuit of healing, personal growth, and transformation. This commitment serves as a driving force that propels the therapeutic journey forward.

These “8 C’s” serve as a guiding light in the intricate landscape of the internal world, facilitating healing, promoting self-awareness, and fostering integration. By embracing these principles, individuals can embark on a journey towards a harmonious and balanced inner system, ultimately leading to enhanced mental and emotional well-being.


Also Read:
Understanding Internal Family Systems (IFS): A Comprehensive Guide
Exploring Internal Family Systems Therapy | Karuna Healing

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