Dr. Louis Cozolino
About Dr. Louis Cozolino
Dr. Cozolino is Professor of Psychology at Pepperdine University and has diverse clinical and research interests. He holds degrees in philosophy and theology, in addition to his doctoral in clinical psychology. He has conducted empirical research in schizophrenia, child abuse, and the long-term impact of stress. Recently, his interests have turned to a synthesis of the biobehavioral sciences and psychotherapy.
Dr. Cozolino is also a highly engaging and stimulating presenter with over 20 years experience in teaching. He is the author of The Neuroscience of Psychotherapy, The Healthy Aging Brain, The Neuroscience of Human Relationships, and The Making of a Therapist, as well as, numerous articles and chapters on various topics. He maintains a clinical and consulting practice in Los Angeles.
The Social Brain
Cozolino's more recent writings focus on the evolution of the human brain into a social organ and the ways in which brains connect to attune, communicate, and regulate one another. He uses the term "sociostasis" to describe how we have evolved to regulate each other's metabolic activation, emotions, and behavior.
The Social Synapse
Cozolino introduced the concept of the Social Synapse, the medium through which we are linked together into larger organisms such as families, tribes, societies and the human species as a whole. "Gaze, pupil dilation, facial expressions, posture, proximity, touch, and mirror systems are all reflexive and obligatory systems that work below conscious awareness. These and other systems yet to be discovered create a high-speed information linkup between us, establishing ongoing physiological and emotional synchrony."
Cozolino uses the term sociostasis to describe the reciprocal influence individuals have on one another as they regulate each others' biology, psychology, and states of mind across the social synapse. It is an expansion of the foundational way Murray Bowen's described the emotional homeostasis that exists within families that influences separation and individuation.
The Neuroscience of Psychotherapy
In The Neuroscience of Psychotherapy, Cozolino synthesizes the field of psychotherapy with finding from neurology, neuroscience, and neurochemistry to provide a model for the underlying mechanisms of action in the therapeutic process. He describes four key principles for enhancing neuroplasticity in the human brain/mind complex - Secure relationships, a low to moderate level of physiological arousal, a balance of emotional and cognitive processing, and the construction of coherent narratives about the self, relationships, and the world.