Welcome to
Strength for Change

We are a team of compassionate, expertly trained, and highly skilled therapists.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy For Anxiety, Depression, & Other Mental Health Conditions in New Jersey

At Strength for Change, we are a group of compassionate, expertly trained, and highly skilled therapists. We specialize in Cognitive Behavioral (CBT) and other evidence-based therapies in the treatment of anxiety, depression, substance abuse, ADHD, and other mental health conditions. We provide individual, marriage, and family therapy and are devoted to the care and well-being of our clients. 

Strength for Change was established in 2001 by Bernard Ivin, LCSW, to train other therapists in CBT and to make the therapy more readily available in the communities he served. His passion for CBT comes from his application of the therapy in overcoming personal difficulties and witnessing its transformative power in the lives of his clients.

To learn more about the therapy model developed by Bernard Ivin and utilized by all SFC therapists, view the emotional toolkit found on our resources page. 

Premium Mental Health Services

At Strength for Change, all our therapists are out-of-network providers. As such, we understand the investment clients are making in their treatment and are committed to going above and beyond in providing them with exceptional care. When you choose one of us as your treatment provider, in addition to working with a highly competent therapist, you will receive the following benefits.

  • Direct Communication:  You will be able to communicate directly with your therapist via his or her cell phone, including off hours for urgent matters. Your calls and other communications will be returned in a timely manner.
  • Minimal Wait Time:  Someone will call you back within 24 hours of your initial call, and you will be scheduled for your first appointment within one week. Your appointments will start within 10 minutes of your scheduled time. If your therapist is running late, you will be notified via text so that you are not inconvenienced.
  • Flexible Appointment Options:  You will have the option of day, evening, or weekend in-person or virtual appointments. In-person appointments will take place in professional offices conveniently located off two major highways, handicapped-accessible, well-furnished, and clean. Virtual sessions will occur on a secure platform meeting all HIPAA privacy standards.
  • Individualized Care:  You will participate in a comprehensive mental health assessment and be informed of your diagnosis (if applicable) and related individualized treatment plan. Your treatment plan will consist of evidence-based therapies that are consistent with the American Psychiatric Association’s Best Practices Guidelines.
  • The Highest Standard of Confidentiality:  Your information will be held to the highest standard of confidentiality. Since we are an out-of-network provider, not even your insurance company will have access to your treatment information without your written consent.
  • Additional Clinical Support:  If you feel your therapy is not progressing satisfactorily or are in any way dissatisfied with the therapy you are receiving, at zero cost, you can consult with our Clinical Director (Bernard Ivin, LCSW) for a second opinion and, if need be, a revised treatment plan.
Meet Our Team

KP - Oct 23, 2019

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

When I think of Bernie I smile! He helped me overcome my anxiety and to live my best life. I learned probably around 15 coping strategies from him. I use many of them almost every day. More importantly, he always made me feel understood and cared about. There is nothing that I couldn't talk to him about. He is the best!

What went well

  • Appointment scheduling
  • Listened & answered questions
  • Explained conditions well
  • Staff friendliness
  • Appointment wasn't rushed
  • Trusted the provider's decisions

What could be improved

N/A

Read More

KP - Oct 23, 2019

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

3 years ago I was looking for a new therapist. I found Bernie online. I liked his website because he gave a lot of information about his treatment. What I experienced with Bernie was very much what he described on his website. He took the time to get to know me, explained what he thought was causing my problems and taught me how to cope. During the time I worked with Bernie I stopped partying, met my girlfriend and found a great job. I don't think any of that would have happened without him.

What went well

  • Appointment scheduling
  • Listened & answered questions
  • Explained conditions well
  • Staff friendliness
  • Appointment wasn't rushed
  • Trusted the provider's decisions
  • Wait times

What could be improved

N/A

Read More

Jordan in New York, NY - Aug 01, 2017

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

I've worked with Bernie for many years and can confidently say that therapy with Bernie has had an immeasurably positive impact on my life. Bernie has helped me work through anxiety, depression, relationship issues, organizational/motivational issues related to ADHD, and general life/change adjustments, and with his guidance I've learned to apply the techniques of cognitive behavioral therapy and intervention to everyday challenges. I highly recommend working with Bernie and Strength for Change.

What went well

  • Appointment scheduling
  • Listened & answered questions
  • Explained conditions well
  • Staff friendliness
  • Appointment wasn't rushed
  • Trusted the provider's decisions
  • Wait times

What could be improved

N/A

Read More
What Distinguishes Us From Other Providers

Cognitive Behavioral
Therapy (CBT)

CBT has been researched perhaps more than any other psychological therapy. It is an evidence-based therapy proven highly effective in the treatment of depression, anxiety, substance abuse, and many other mental health conditions. Please visit the National Institute of Mental Health website (www.nimh.com) to learn more about CBT and the importance of evidence-based mental health treatments. 

CBT was developed in the 1960’s by Dr. Aaron T. Beck out of the University of Pennsylvania. It is based on the idea that our thoughts determine our emotional and behavioral reactions and that by learning to control our thoughts we are able to feel good and do good in the pursuit of our life’s goals. 

CBT teaches clients how to become their own therapists who are capable of using a variety of coping strategies to effectively manage their emotional and behavioral reactions. Clients learn skills and strategies for restructuring negative thought patterns, generating self-motivation, changing unhealthy behaviors, and cultivating a “solution-focused” lifestyle. 

Motivation
Focused Strategies

For any therapy to be effective, the individual receiving it must be an active participant in the treatment process. Simply put, the best treatment plan means nothing without the client’s motivation for implementing it. 

Unfortunately, most mental health conditions impair an individual’s motivation for school, work, social life, and self-care. When family and friends try to intervene, they are frustrated by the individual’s lack of responsiveness and view it as a willful act of resistance. Once the individual’s support system is frustrated in this way conflicts intensify, and the individual’s mental health gets worse. 

At Strength for Change, we have a treatment model that accounts for the individual’s impaired motivation. Our guiding principle is that we are responsible for helping clients cultivate the motivation that is needed for treatment success. With this in mind, we have developed numerous motivational strategies that are implemented throughout the treatment process.

Individualized &
Evidence-Based Care

While we specialize in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, we do not have a one size fits all approach to therapy. Instead, we match our therapeutic approach to the client’s symptoms, diagnosis, age, personality, and level of motivation. 

This Individualized approach is based on the American Psychiatric Associations Best Practices Guidelines which advocates the use of evidence-based therapies. For example, anxiety disorders are treated with individual CBT, while ADHD is treated with a combination of academic coaching and family therapy. The condition is matched to the therapy that is proven most effective in its treatment. 

In addition to raising the effectiveness of therapy, our individualized approach also helps the client feel more deeply understood and valued. These feelings enhance the trust and collaboration between the client and therapist and create a more satisfying and enjoyable treatment experience.

Resources For Students & Parents
The Essential Guide To
Mental Health Services

A Parent’s Guide To Understanding A Child’s Mental Health Difficulties & Obtaining Needed Services.

Relationship
Centered Parenting

A Parenting Model for Effectively Managing a Child’s Difficult Behavior &  Creating a Cooperative Family Environment.

The 1-2-3
Succeed Program

A Student Program For Learning The Organization, Homework, & Study Skills Necessary For School Success.

Contact Us

You can use the form on this page to send us a message. Please also feel free to call or email us anytime.