Working with Adolescents: Separation from Parental Figures & the Ending of Therapeutic Relationships A one day training workshop with workshop with Professor Stephen Briggs London, 25 February 2017, Saturday 10:00am - 5:00pm Working with the emotional and relational aspects of the separation process is central to therapeutic work with young people and their families. This workshop explores how an understanding of the separation process can helpfully inform therapeutic work; while highlighting how the ending of therapeutic relationships represents a significant experience of separation – and potentially of growth - for young people. At this practical and therapeutically oriented workshop which would be especially relevant for psychotherapists, psychologists, student counsellors and psychiatrists, Professor Briggs draws on his long-standing psychodynamic and clinical experience to explore the specific challenges we encounter as therapists when working with the separation process. The workshop explains how we can: negotiate the experiences of loss, and defences against the pain of loss comprehend adolescents’ difficulties in becoming more separate from parents, and the emotional and developmental problems that can ensue appreciate the complex and demanding situations where parents have difficulties in relating to adolescent emotionality work with the emotional aspects of ending therapeutic relationships with young people comprehend the impact of social media and the changing nature of transition to adulthood – and apply this in therapeutic interactions with young people Overall, the workshop highlights how we can identify the positive developmental aspects of parental separation and allow this to inform our therapeutic work with young people. The workshop also explains how we can effectively manage the process of ending therapeutic relationships – a necessary stage which, though emotionally exacting for both therapist and young person, can significantly help a young person’s development. further details & bookings
Embodied Mentalisation: Sociality and the Body A one day workshop with Dr Katerina Fotopoulou London, 3 March 2017, Friday 10:00am - 4:00pm The question of whether our mental processes are initially and primarily shaped by our embodied dimensions or social interactions is debated across multiple fields, including psychotherapy, psychology and cognitive neuroscience. At this practical and intellectually stimulating workshop, we examine the development and maintenance of the psychological self in relation to two central influences: embodiment and sociality. Our aim is to uncover mind-body linkages from somatic, psychoanalytical and neuroscientific perspectives with a view to aiding our therapeutic interactions. The workshop helps us understand: how the physical presence of other people, as well as our interactions and relationship with them, modulates our (inter)subjective experience of our body the radical claim that even some of the most minimal aspects of selfhood, namely the feeling qualities associated with being an embodied subject, are fundamentally shaped by embodied interactions with other people in early infancy and beyond how such embodied interactions allow us and our clients to mentalize and maintain stable equilibrium between our psychological processes the neurobiological mechanisms by which bodily signals are integrated and re-mapped in the brain to ultimately form our coherent, conscious sense of embodiment what do we mean by proximal intercorporeality and how this concept can help our clinical interpretations The sculpturing of the mentalization process by which our clients come to understand themselves, their therapists and others How embodied, social interactions contribute to the constitution of the minimal self, including the progressive sophistication of mental distinctions between: subject-object, self-other and even pleasure-pain By drawing linkages between cognitive neuroscience research and psychoanalysis, Dr Fotopoulou explains why gaining an understanding of such mind-body functioning is well worth the effort given the intrinsically multifaceted nature of the mind and the ‘dual’ self as subject and as object of our consciousness. further details & bookings
Attachment & Psychosis: developmental psychopathology of severe mental health A one day seminar with Professor Matthias Schwannauer London, 4 March 2017, Saturday 10:00am - 5:00pm Psychosis may be viewed as a threatening life event which disrupts core attachment, interpersonal and affect regulatory processes – all of which impact an individual’s developmental trajectories. Alternatively, psychosis might exploit pre-existing vulnerabilities, further undermining transition and recovery from psychosis. At this practical workshop, which would be especially relevant for psychotherapists, psychologists, counsellors and psychiatrists, we aim to examine first episode psychosis from a developmental perspective. We start with a fundamental premise that Attachment Theory offers a promising, psychodevelopmentally grounded framework for understanding onset, help seeking, adaptation and resilience in the experience of first episode psychosis. By considering attachment theory as a constructive context, the seminar helps us understand: the role of affect dysregulation and other related psychological processes such as the impact of trauma on first presentations of psychosis the developmental processes underlying the psychological factors instrumental in psychosis, and an up-to-date developmental psychopathology of psychosis the considerable overlap of common experiences in psychosis and in normal adolescent experiences that might be deemed psychotic if viewed from a purely clinical perspective life experiences and transitions that might heighten an individual's vulnerability to the development of a psychotic disorder how positive attachment experiences can aid the development of reflective function and mentalisation, serving as catalyst for self-regulatory processes The processes that are essential to any psychological formulation of a psychotic symptom experience or psychotic episode By considering the above, our aim is to present an individually based psychological intervention targeting emotional recovery and relapse prevention. The seminar outlines an overall psychological framework for developing individually tailored strategies for case formulation, recovery and staying well that primarily focus on emotional and interpersonal adaptation to psychosis. further details & bookings
Disorganised Attachment Behaviour A one day workshop with Professor David Shemmings London, 11 March 2017, Saturday 10:00am - 4:00pm At its very extreme, insecure attachment can manifest as Disorganized Attachment Behaviour (DAB) – when the careseeker no longer views his / her attachment figure as a provider of protection, but rather as a source of fear (or even danger). Chronic ‘fear without solution’ experiences can have emotionally and developmentally debilitating effects that may last throughout an individual’s life. As practitioners, it is important that we can effectively identify DAB, appreciate connections with unresolved loss and trauma as well as offer effective therapeutic interventions. At this practical workshop, which would be especially relevant for psychotherapists, psychologists, counsellors, student advisors and psychiatrists, Professor Shemmings helps us understand Disorganized Attachment Behaviour (DAB), the proxy measures we can use for identification and assessment, the key differences of DAB with Attachment Disorders, the consequences and sequalae of attachment disorganization and the different approaches we can utilize (including VIPP, VIG, ABC and CoS) to provide long lasting therapeutic interventions. By looking at the working constructs of ‘Attachment’, the key components of the ‘Strange Situation Procedure’, the challenges inherent in risk assessment of child maltreatment and video case vignettes, we will explore: The way we currently assess ‘risk’ when working with children and families and why we need to redirect our gaze How proxy measures including parental sensitivity, unresolved loss and trauma and low mentalizing capacity can assist in assessment Latest research on DAB and the history of its development Causes and limitations of DAB Consequences of disorganized attachment and its connection with relational trauma Connections between unresolved loss and insensitive or frightening parenting Our developing understanding of the neurobiology of maltreatment and disorganization Distinguishing DAB with Attachment Disorders A brief outline of four similar (but different) therapeutic approaches that can be used for DAB further details & bookings
Attachment-Informed Interventions in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy An online webinar with Dr Gail Myhr 15 March 2017, Wednesday 6:00pm - 9:00pm, London, UK time Liotti (2007) has described cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) as a dance between therapist and client, who alternate between two modes – a joint, problem-focused mode and a second, more intensely personal, attachment-caregiving mode. Explicitly targeting attachment-related beliefs, feelings and behaviour activated within the therapeutic relationship, can potentially enhance attachment security and lead to healthy changes in a client’s internal working models of attachment. And yet, while such attachment-informed interventions have become a mainstay of psychoanalytic modalities – integration with cognitive behavioural therapies has been hesitant and tepid. At this practical and engaging webinar by Dr Gail Myhr, we make the assertion that attachment-informed interventions, when combined with cognitive approaches have the potential to deliver a higher remission of symptoms in our clients. We consider how integration of attachment theory into the cognitive behavioural conceptualization of cases, and the use of implicit and explicit attachment-related interventions in CBT might be expected to improve outcomes, while increasing attachment security for our clients. The webinar will be especially useful for psychotherapists, psychologists and counsellors who are interested in learning how to integrate specific attachment-related interventions in their work with clients. Specifically, we will consider: The secure base concept as a blueprint for our therapeutic engagements Recognition of the client’s attachment style, as well as our own Deliberate anticipation of “noncomplementary ways” in which therapists must act to counteract their clients’ expectations of attachment figures How to recognize the activation of the attachment system in session Specific ways to respond to a client’s hyperactivation or de-activation strategies Case examples of insecure attachment prototypes will be presented to illustrate key concepts underlying attachment-related interventions further details & bookings
Attachment and Intimacy: Developing Love Relationships A one day Seminar with Dr Christopher Clulow Manchester, 18 March 2017, Saturday 10:00am - 4:00pm The secure attachment of an infant to its mother or other primary carer as the basic building block of strong interpersonal relations in adulthood has held particular sway in the thinking of practitioners ever since Freud described it as “the first and strongest love object and the prototype of all later love relations”. This one-day seminar by Dr Clulow widens our understanding of how our earliest love relationships provide the foundations for – if not necessarily the prototypes of – all adult love relationships, especially those we have as partners and parents. The seminar considers how adult love relationships differ from those of childhood and enhances our understanding of what secure and insecure partnerships look like. Through clinical vignettes and attachment informed concepts, Dr Clulow explores the nature of love, and applies this to relationships in the therapeutic domain. The seminar pays particular attention to Winnicott’s concept of mirroring, in highlighting processes that are central to regulating affect in close relationships and fostering change. further details & bookings
Working with Extremely Disturbed and Borderline Clients A one day seminar with Dr Anne Alvarez London, 18 March 2017, Saturday 10:00am - 4:00pm Dr Anne Alvarez has worked extensively with extremely disturbed and borderline clients and found that therapeutic work with such clients can be very challenging. The clients can be unresponsive to traditional approaches and methods of ascribing meaning. Crucially, such clients appear not to be able to manage spatial, temporal and causal ‘two-tracked thinking’ (i.e. some capability to think symbolically). She found that due to ego impairment and extreme disturbance, the therapist’s assumption that the client had a sense of self that could be talked to & a clear sense of other people to whom the therapist could refer, proved false. At this practical seminar which would be of particular relevance to psychotherapists, clinical & educational psychologists, counsellors and psychiatrists; Dr Alvarez builds on 50 years of experience as a psychotherapist, and explains how three different levels of analytical work and communication: • the explanatory level, • the descriptive level and • the intensified vitalizing level; can work best to address these challenges. She argues that our traditional understanding of ‘interpretation levels’ needs to be revised taking psychopathological and developmental priorities into account. Illustrating her explanations with practical case vignettes, Dr Alvarez helps us comprehend, as practitioners, when we need to progress from traditional therapy and apply a second level of work – that of containment and empathic description – with fragmented, under-integrated or overwhelmed clients. In even more severe cases, where the sense of self and object is very weak, a third, more intensified level of work may be necessary. She also explains how our therapeutic approach can make use of a counter-transference sense of urgency with clients in states of severe chronic dissociation. Blending a solid theoretical foundation with practical case studies at this seminar, Dr Alvarez helps us also understand how the timing of these therapeutic interventions may need to shift from moment to moment even within a single session. further details & bookings
The Internal World and the Process of Change: A Multidisciplinary Approach An online webinar with Paul Renn 23 March 2017, Thursday 6:00pm - 9:00pm, London, UK time In recent decades, there has been a paradigm shift in psychoanalysis from drive theory to a relational model. This has been paralleled by a new understanding of the mind or internal world and the process of change. In this webinar, which would be of value to psychotherapists, psychologists, psychiatrists, and counsellors, Paul Renn explores these developments from a multidisciplinary perspective. In the first session, Paul presents research from cognitive and developmental psychology, neurobiology, cognitive neuroscience, and attachment. He contends that relational psychoanalysis is well-placed to incorporate the empirical findings emerging from related disciplines into a clinical model that integrates such data with the current emphasis on intersubjectivity, trauma, dissociation, attachment, mentalization, nonlinear dynamic systems theory, and mutual enactments. Specifically, Paul argues that an integrative contemporary approach can help us to understand the way in which our earliest relationships shape our personality and structure our internal world, and how these past relational experiences live on within us in silent, invisible ways, vitally influencing the emotional quality of our most intimate relationships in the present. At the conclusion of the first session, Paul presents his own clinical model, arguing that therapeutic change consists of a dual process and needs to proceed in both the explicit and implicit domains. further details & bookings
Working with Domestic Abuse A one day workshop with Christiane Sanderson London, 25 March 2017, Saturday 10:00am - 4:00pm On average, two women a week in the UK are murdered by their partner or ex-partner. While much of the clinical literature focuses on physical violence in domestic abuse (DA), there is increasing evidence that power, control, coercion and emotional abuse is used to control partners in intimate relationships. This workshop, which would be especially relevant for psychotherapists, counsellors, psychologists and psychiatrists, aims to enhance our comprehension of DA, its impact and long term effects on survivors; while explaining how, as practitioners, we can work effectively using the principles of safe trauma therapy, psychoeducation and stabilisation to restore control and to allow for the processing of the DA narrative. It will look at the spectrum of DA, including the dynamics of control and coercion in emotional abuse, and the role of shame and humiliation that silences those who are being domestically abused. The workshop will consider the use of physical force, sexual violence, financial abuse, spiritual abuse and revenge porn, and identify those most at risk of DA. Emphasis will be placed on understanding the processes involved in DA such as grooming victims, the cycle of abuse, the role of dissociation and thought blindness that supports the trauma bond which binds the couple. The aim is to understand the role of attachment and fear of abandonment that underpins much of DA and how this manifests relationally both for the couple and practitioners working with DA. We also look at the importance of the therapeutic relationship in restoring relational worth, mitigating the de-humanising effects of DA and restoring autonomy and self-agency. Conceptualising DA within the complex trauma framework, we consider the processing of the DA narrative and the facilitation of post traumatic growth. By identifying the challenges of working with DA and introducing a range of therapeutic skills, practitioners will feel more equipped when working with survivors of DA and enhance their comprehension of the transformative effects of post traumatic growth for both clients and practitioners. Specifically, we will consider: The nature and dynamics of DA, such as the role of charm and enticement, the use of control and coercion, the cycle of abuse, the nature of thought blindness that facilitates the trauma bond and the role of silence, secrecy and shame The intergenerational transmission of DA through attachment and relational deficits The characteristics of male and female perpetrators DA as complex trauma and its neurobiological impact The psychological impact and long term effects of DA on partners, and children Obstacles to leaving an abusive relationship The importance of developing safety plans when leaving The principles of trauma informed practice model when working with survivors of DA The role of the therapeutic relationship in restoring autonomy and self-agency The impact of working with DA on practitioners and the role of self-care further details & bookings
Transference and Counter-Transference: from pitfalls to efficacy in therapy A one day seminar with Jan McGregor Hepburn Dublin,25 March 2017, Saturday 10:00am - 4:00pm As therapists, we understand that the redirection of our client’s emotions towards us can be manifest in a myriad of ways including rage, mistrust, parentification, overt dependence and attraction. We recognise that such transference lends malleability to our therapeutic relationship and its misinterpretation can impede therapeutic progress. However, when skilfully guided, the same dynamics of transference and countertransference can allow us valuable insights as therapists and enable us to deliver extremely effective therapeutic interventions. At this practical and therapeutically oriented seminar, which would be particularly relevant for psychotherapists, clinical & educational psychologists, counsellors and psychiatrists, Jan McGregor Hepburn draws on her longstanding experience in social work management and Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy to clearly illustrate both theoretical underpinnings of transference and countertransference and their practical linkages to clinical work. She explains how we can miss certain interpretations which might lead to poor clinical outcomes and utilises case vignettes to illustrate how the dynamics of transference / countertransference can be creative tools in the therapist’s hands. further details & bookings
Principles of Trauma-Focused Therapy: working towards restoration and repair A 2-day training workshop at London with Dr. Jamie Marich London, 28 & 29 April 2017, Friday & Saturday 9:30am - 4:30pm on both days Despite the proliferation of scholarly research on Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD); as practitioners, we can feel overwhelmed with the actual, practical steps we need to take to restore and repair when working with trauma. At this 2-day workshop, which would be relevant for therapists and counsellors across modalities, Dr Jamie Marich demystifies the entire process from trauma assessment to restorative growth. Using real-world approaches and strategies with proven efficacies, the workshop allows us to make informed decisions based on setting, client preparedness and other contextual variables. On Day 1, we look at effective assessment and case conceptualisation. We comprehend specific interventions for stabilization, grounding and symptom management. The content of Day 2 is slightly more advanced and is aimed at helping us ‘delve deeper’ with trauma interventions. We compare and contrast multiple approaches including cognitive methodologies like DBT and ACT, somatic and movement therapies, EMDR Therapy, brainspotting, DNMS and Gestalt approaches. Our learning objectives over the two days include: comprehend trauma from multiple perspectives including etymological, clinical, psychological, neurobiological and diagnostic standpoints consider the similarities between working with trauma and addressing grief / loss and mourning understand the Triphasic / consensus model of trauma treatment and articulate current research-based challenges to this long-standing model highlight the role of the therapeutic relationship and boundary setting in effective trauma therapy develop a plan of stabilization / affect regulation for our clients implement and understand at least five trauma-informed stabilization skills discuss qualities of effective trauma therapies, including the ability to assess our own capacity for working with trauma define processing within the context of the adaptive information processing (AIP) model discuss the range of therapy options available for helping clients process trauma, considering the advantages and disadvantages of each come to grips with reintegration, post-traumatic growth, and resilience, and explain the relevance of each to overall trauma treatment comprehend how self-care amongst clinicians working with trauma is a quality of care issue further details & bookings
Narcissism in Clinical Contexts and Everyday Life A one day seminar with Frances Thomson Salo, Jan McGregor Hepburn & Anne Manne Melbourne, Australia, 29 April 2017, Saturday 10:00am - 4:00pm From outwardly senseless acts of rampage to the disturbing rise of assaults in public life, narcissistic expressions of individuality are increasingly all around us – in society, in mainstream media, in our patients and amongst ourselves. Is self before all here to stay and is it a phenomenon that is shaping our identities as therapists and societal beings? At this intellectually stimulating and thought provoking one-day seminar, we look at this issue from multiple, practical perspectives – through the latest works in psychology, through the lens of infant-observation and through its inextricable linkages with reparative and persecutory guilt. The seminar draws together leading thinkers in the field - Anne Manne, author of the recent bestselling book ‘The Life of I - The New Culture of Narcissism’; Frances Thompson- Salo, author of the recent seminal book – ‘Infant Observation- Creating Transformative Relationships’ and Jan McGregor Hepburn who is internationally renowned for her research and clinical expertise in Guilt and Infant-Observation – who discuss, debate and bring to life new ways of thinking about and working with narcissism in all its forms. Through interactive engagements with participants and seminar sub-sections, we specifically consider: Narcissism on the rise?: is narcissism on the rise in society and amongst our patients? How do we look past the interpretations offered by popular media and make up our own minds? What tools from psychology help us comprehend the developmental pathways through which narcissism develops? Clinical challenges of narcissism: we are aware that ‘a narcissistic illusion of being loved’ can alter a patient’s interpretations of reality. How do we meet the therapeutic needs of a patient where client presentation is overshadowed by narcissistic relational expectations? As practitioners, what can we learn from narcissistic functioning and how can we apply this understanding to enhance the efficacy of our therapeutic work? Narcissism and infant-observation: How can infant observation illuminate the pathways to narcissistic expressions? How does parent-infant psychotherapy help us comprehend the linkages between guilt and narcissism? Through discussions between the speakers and audience members, this stimulating and innovative day attempts to link perspectives across psychology, social philosophy and infant-observation. The aim is to consider the ways in which both clinical work and citizenship can be informed by thinking about narcissism and guilt. Jointly, we will look at constructive ways in which we can ameliorate the effects of a family and societal culture which can tend to stimulate pathological narcissism. The day will be of interest to psychotherapists, psychologists, student counsellors, philosophers, teachers and all those who study and think about culture and society. further details & bookings
Attachment perspectives on Borderline Personality Disorder: implications for therapy A one day workshop with Dr Gwen Adshead London, 13 May 2017, Saturday 10:00am - 4:00pm Attachment theory provides useful perspectives on emotionally unstable or borderline personality disorder (BPD); both in terms of how the disorder develops and in terms of therapy. Both clients and therapists may struggle with trust, high levels of negative affect, and therapeutic ruptures. Attachment needs in such clients are highly aroused and often extremely difficult to assuage. Understandably, BPD clients can not only struggle to participate in the therapeutic alliance, but can also view therapists as aloof, uncaring, antagonistic or unsympathetic. At this practical and interactive workshop that would be relevant for psychotherapists, clinical psychologists, counsellors and psychiatrists, Dr Gwen Adshead will use a perspective based on attachment theory and the tenets of mentalisation to explore: How the psychopathology of emotional instability develops Hostile, helpless states of mind and epistemic trust The relationship with disorganised attachment and its sequelae How this understanding informs our therapeutic approaches How this understanding influences the way we think about families and their therapeutic needs Language and threat: use of ‘why’ questions, silence and poor mentalising Preventing and managing attachment anxiety Gwen will not only present material based on published evidence; but also, use group discussion and ‘live supervision’ of cases brought by participants as part of the workshop. Participants are welcome to bring vignettes of clinical material that can be shared and discussed within the normal boundaries of confidentiality. further details & bookings

nscience UK is an independent organisation that seeks to explore the interdisciplinary richness of mental health disciplines. Through a series of seminars, workshops and conferences that are conducted throughout the year, we aim to present the latest advances in theory and research to practitioners; with a view to furthering their continuing professional development.

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Continuing professional development through seminars, workshops and conferences for psychotherapists, counsellors and psychologists.