Encyclopedia of Couple and Family Therapy

2019 Edition
| Editors: Jay L. Lebow, Anthony L. Chambers, Douglas C. Breunlin

Odd and Even Day Ritual in Couple and Family Therapy

  • Ryan B. SeedallEmail author
  • Melanie F. Hansen
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-49425-8_319

Name of the Strategy or Intervention

Odd and Even Day Ritual


The Odd and Even Day Ritual is used to help clients break out of their problematic patterns. This type of ritual is prescribed by the therapist, often paradoxically and with little explanation to the clients. The basic idea is that the therapist has clients alter the ways they interact with one another based on odd or even days. This ritual helps clients act outside of their rigid, established patterns. The therapist checks in with clients each session regarding the prescribed ritual. How the clients respond to the ritual provides critical understanding for the therapist.

Theoretical Framework

The Odd and Even Day Ritualis a ritualized prescription within Milan systemic therapy (MST). MST is a strategic-oriented therapy that was originally developed by Mara Palazzoli Selvini, Giuliana Prata, Luigi Boscolo, and Gianfranco Cecchin. Similar to the MRI and Haley-Madanes versions of strategic therapy, MST was...

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Utah State UniversityLoganUSA

Section editors and affiliations

  • Eli Karam
    • 1
  1. 1.University of LouisvilleLouisvilleUSA