Trauma Skills Training Week A 5-day training programme with Christiane Sanderson, Arielle Schwartz, Miriam Taylor, Karen Treisman and Marcus West London, 3 - 7 February 2020 (Monday - Friday) 10:00am - 4:00pm on each day
At this practical and skills oriented training programme, which would be especially relevant for psychotherapists, psychologists and counsellors; we aim to comprehend some of the most challenging aspects of therapy for trauma, in all its clinical manifestations – as single episodic trauma, post-traumatic stress disorder, complex trauma, developmental and relational trauma and C-PTSD. The training programme focusses on the therapeutic skills we need in our repertoire as Trauma Therapists and Counsellors and brings together globally acclaimed speakers and experts to explore: The mind-body therapies that we require for vagus nerve regulation and the specific therapeutic techniques that we can utilise for addressing dysregulated arousal states How we can utilise somatic interventions – looking at the experiential aspects of working with arousal, sensation and movement How our clients can recover sexuality after sexual trauma The specific clinical challenges inherent to PTSD and C-PTSD and avoidance of misdiagnosis with personality disorders, BPD and dissociative disorders The consequences of profound early relational trauma – with special focus on the psyche’s reactions and adaptations to Trauma as well as the psyche’s defences against narcissistic wounding Integrative, Mind-Body approaches to treating clients with chronic, repeated and / or developmental trauma What it means to be a Trauma-Wise Practitioner - psychoeducation skills, grounding skills and sensorimotor techniques An analysis of the language we use in our therapeutic interactions with Trauma clients – how our words can shape expectations and set the tone for impactful change Self-care strategies by which we can minimise vicarious trauma Each training day can be booked individually or as part of the whole 5-Day programme.
Training Programme Summary (Please scroll down for detailed programme)
Training Programme Schedule Day 1, 3 February 2020, Monday 10:00am – 1:00pm: Karen Treisman: Trauma & the Power of Language Starting the proceedings for this training programme, Dr Karen Treisman’s practical and intellectually stimulating seminar will explore the importance, power and influence of language - the words we use, and the way we describe and story people, in the context of trauma. Specifically, we will consider: How we start by acknowledging the power of language and storying – by thinking consciously and deliberately about the language used and the words chosen from a trauma-informed lens perspective How a key part of this is a shift away from asking ‘What is wrong with you?’ and instead getting to know / see the person behind the symptom. This includes the use of first-person language, curiosity and reflection about the question ‘What happened to you?’ Evaluating whether our services, structures, processes and systems as trauma practitioners might be unintentionally retraumatising, retriggering and activating. Considering whether there is an intentional effort and action around evaluating these, reflecting on these and actively trying to find ways to improve, develop and problem-solve around them? We will especially look at some of the words and labels used to describe those who have experienced trauma and adversity; as well as some of the language and acronyms that can be prevalent in the therapeutic alliance. We will also explore concepts such as attentional and confirmation biases; as well as self-fulfilling prophecy. Case examples and powerful stories and quotes will be shared throughout this presentation. 2:00pm – 4:00pm: Arielle Schwartz: Vagus Nerve Regulation and Trauma Recovery* In the years since the Adverse Childhood Experiences study (Felitti, 1998), research has concluded that there is undeniable connection between childhood trauma and our health. Importantly, complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) and mind-body therapies can help us to calm down anxiety, reduce chronic illness symptoms, support digestion, and improve our sleep. Such therapies include mindfulness, yoga, relaxation, breath practices, nutritional counseling, massage therapy, and acupuncture – these can help our clients to increase their resilience, allowing them to control unnecessary defenses and reclaim a sense of safety. At this engaging seminar, psychologist and certified yoga instructor, Dr Arielle Schwartz, leads us through an interactive exploration of the mind-body therapies for vagus nerve regulation. We will learn about her approach to therapeutic yoga for trauma recovery and discover leading-edge strategies that allow us to successfully address dysregulated arousal states triggered by trauma. She explains practical tools to increase our client’s resilience. Learning Objectives: Understand the connection between trauma and your health as related to the vagus nerve Learn what current research is revealing about the efficacy of mind-body therapies for trauma recovery Discover specific yogic movement and breathing practices that can help you find balance during times of stress. Connect to a community engaged in healing from trauma * joining us through online video from US Day 2, 4 February 2020, Tuesday 10:00am – 4:00pm: Miriam Taylor: Working with the Traumatised Body Because trauma is fundamentally and implicitly stored in the body, major contemporary therapeutic approaches advocate somatic interventions. It is often the case that the body tells the story for which the client may not have found words yet, and we need to find ways to listen to the story behind the symptoms. For many therapists trained to work verbally or from the ‘top-down’, working with the body is unfamiliar and this workshop aims to encourage therapists to work from the ‘bottom-up’ as well. The workshop will introduce some of the ideas and techniques which can lead to understanding and resolving the somatic markers of trauma. At this practical and clinically oriented workshop which would be relevant for all practitioners working with Trauma (including PTSD, Complex Trauma and Dissociative Disorders), Miriam Taylor highlights the case for therapists to adopt a body-sensitive approach to trauma. Starting from a theoretical base developed both from neuroscience and existential phenomenology, the body will be considered as the primary organiser and integrator of traumatic experience. A particular focus will be on experiential aspects of working with arousal, sensation and movement, and consideration will be given to trauma-based fears associated with connecting with the bodily self. Through experiential elements and case vignettes, the workshop helps us comprehend: Trauma: a public and personal health issue The neurobiology of trauma – the triune brain, the vagus nerve, HPA axis and the window of tolerance; Hebb’s axiom Somatic memory – implicit and procedural learning The orienting response – assessment and possible interventions Embodied resonance and the therapist – reading the story Dysregulated arousal as a whole-body experience Understanding phobias of bodily experience The ambiguous relationship many trauma victims have with pain Shame and the body Dissociation as disconnection from bodily experience Reconnecting with the lived body – the phenomenological method Breath – how and when to offer a range of techniques Self-harm and the body Reclaiming sexuality after sexual trauma Trauma, self-care and long-term health Day 3, 5 February 2020, Wednesday 10:00am – 4:00pm: Christiane Sanderson: Conceptualising Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and Complex PTSD The focus of this training day is the conceptualisation and assessment of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (C-PTSD). We consider: The nature and main features of PTSD, including the main criteria and symptoms as identified by Diagnostic Statistical Manual version 5 (DSM-V) (APA, 2013) The recent addition of subtype: PTSD with Prominent Dissociative Symptoms will also be explored, and we will evaluate its link to dissociative disorders and childhood abuse In addition, the diagnostic category of C-PTSD by the World Health Organisation in the International Classification of Diseases version 11 (ICD-11; WHO, 2019) will be introduced and assessed. We will consider its robustness as a more inclusive and comprehensive formulation of PTSD that accounts for prolonged and repeated exposure to interpersonal trauma The myriad clinical challenges in diagnosing PTSD and C-PTSD will be unpacked including: the impact of subsyndromal PTSD the need to view PTSD on a spectrum and the value of reformulating it as Post Traumatic Injury rather than a disorder We will also consider the link between C-PTSD and personality disorder, in particular Borderline Personality Disorder, Dissociative Disorders, Somatic Symptoms and Related Disorders evaluating both comorbidity and misdiagnosis Participants will have the opportunity to familiarise themselves with a range of assessment scales to measure the impact of trauma including: ICD-11 Trauma Questionnaire Traumatic Events Checklist (TEC) (Nijenhuis et al 2001) Trauma Symptom Inventory Dissociative Experiences Scale (DESII) & the Somatoform Dissociation Questionnaire (SDQ20) (Nijenhuis et al 1996) and the Somatic Symptom Severity Scale –PHQ-15 Through a number of case studies, participants will be encouraged to develop their own trauma focused case formulation to aid their practice and optimise the therapeutic process within a trauma framework Specifically, we cover: Conceptualisation of PTSD & C-PTSD and diagnostic criteria Predictors of PTSD including peri-traumatic dissociation, age at time of trauma and ability to process Clinical challenges such as sub-syndromal PTSD Co-Morbidity such as substance misuse, self-harm and depression Misdiagnosis including personality disorders, borderline personality disorder, bi-polar disorder, dissociative disorders, psychosis, and schizophrenia Familiarisation with a range of assessment scales Opportunity to develop our own trauma focused case formulation through a number of case studies Day 4, 6 February 2020, Thursday 10:00am – 1:00pm: Marcus West: Working with early relational trauma and the ‘traumatised baby’ This seminar will explore some of the consequences of profound early relational trauma, where the infant’s basic needs to attach and to express their desires and distress have been unbearable or unacceptable to the caregiver. The ‘traumatised baby’ then becomes central to therapy and is co-constructed in the therapy relationship in a very powerful way. The seminar will explore some of the patterns of relating that follow and can typically lead to states of retraumatisation, profound regression (that Balint described as ‘malignant’), therapeutic impasse, and often the breakdown of therapy. It will explore how and why states of collapse, hopelessness, despair, envy, idealisation, shame, rage, destructiveness and suicidality, as well as sadistic and masochistic ways of relating, follow from these early experiences. We will consider how working with these states involves understanding and addressing the fundamentals of relating, as they manifest in the therapy relationship, and as they apply to both client and therapist. Using case examples, the seminar will explore how such early trauma triggers the primitive mammalian defences of fight, flight, freeze and collapse, related to Porges’ Polyvagal theory, as well as distortions to what the neuroscientist Jaak Panksepp calls the RAGE, FEAR, SEEKING and PANIC/GRIEF systems (plus the later-developing CARE, LUST and PLAY systems). This is particularly the case where, as in the situations we will discuss, the person to whom the infant would naturally turn to for comfort is also the source of threat, allowing disorganised attachment patterns to develop - with the person turning away from relationship whilst trying to co-opt the other through other relational means - withdrawal, control, avoidance and/or evacuation. The talk therefore explores both the psyche’s reactions and adaptations to the particular trauma(s) and the psyche’s intrinsic defences against narcissistic wounding. A particular focus will be on the period when, as Anne Alvarez describes in working with people with autism, what were once imperative defences are no longer necessary in the same way and simply become (unhelpful) ways of relating. At this point they can be challenged and new ways of relating begin to be developed. This is frequently keyed in by the analyst’s growing awareness of their own primitive, narcissistic, murderous-evacuative impulses which, if recognised, sensitively handled, and constructively utilised, can lead to growth and change (rather than causing an impasse or breakdown of the therapy relationship). 2:00pm – 4:00pm: Arielle Schwartz: Complex PTSD: An Integrative, Mind-Body Approach to Treating Clients with Chronic, Repeated, and/or Developmental Trauma* Most of us, as mental health practitioners are trained in the treatment of single traumatic events. However, clients with complex PTSD (C-PTSD) come to therapy with an extensive history of trauma that often begins in childhood and continues into adulthood with layers of personal, relational, societal, or cultural losses. It takes tremendous courage for a client to confront traumatic memories and emotions. Successful treatment requires a compassionate therapeutic relationship and effective, research-based interventions. The most common question asked by clinicians treating C-PTSD is, “where do I start?” In this seminar, we will develop confidence in our ability to successfully organize and prioritize our client’s treatment goals. You will learn how to compassionately and effectively work with clients who have experienced multiple traumatic events and prolonged trauma exposure. Dr Arielle Schwartz explains valuable leading-edge strategies that will allow us to successfully address the dysregulated affect and arousal states that accompany C-PTSD. You will leave this seminar with practical tools that facilitate a strength-based approach to trauma recovery and increased resilience in your clients. * joining us through online video from US Day 5, 7 February 2020, Friday 10:00am – 4:00pm: Christiane Sanderson: How to Become a Trauma Wise Practitioner: The Use of Trauma Informed Practice This training day will introduce the fundamental principles of trauma informed practice which can enable clinicians to become trauma wise practitioners. The emphasis will be on how trauma informed practice acts as a scaffold for the primary model used by practitioners to aid their work when working with complex trauma, PTSD and C-PTSD. We examine: The importance of titrating exposure to trauma work by employing a three phased model which ensures stabilisation before processing traumatic experiences and moving towards integration The use of psychoeducation, grounding skills, and affect regulation to widen the Window of Tolerance – so as to facilitate somatic safety and distress tolerance when processing traumatic experiences Tried and tested techniques to manage trauma symptoms, flashbacks, intrusive memories, nightmares, dissociation and shame will be highlighted and evaluated Emphasis will also be placed on using both top down and bottom up processing skills and sensorimotor techniques, considering how we can make trauma safe adjustments to body focused techniques such as breathing, mindfulness and body scans The importance of integration and reconnecting to self and others will be highlighted, and we will look at examples that show how this can be facilitated through the therapeutic relationship to allow for post traumatic growth Through a range of experiential exercises participants will have the opportunity to familiarise themselves with psychoeducation skills, grounding skills, and sensorimotor techniques, and practice how to apply these. In addition, they will able to explore how to create a customised recovery toolkit not only for their clients but also for themselves as part of their own self-care. Equipped with this, they will be able to facilitate post traumatic growth for their clients as well as minimise vicarious traumatisation and compassion fatigue to ensure they are able to remain present and embodied when working with survivors of complex trauma, PTSD and C-PTSD. Specifically, we cover: The fundamental principles of trauma informed practice to become a trauma wise practitioner The three phased model: Stabilisation, Processing and Integration The use of top down and bottom up processing techniques Psychoeducation and how to deliver it Grounding skills using sensory stimuli Affect regulation and window of tolerance Body focused techniques and trauma safe adjustments Somatic safety and managing trauma symptoms Processing and integration Creating a customised recovery toolkit Relational skills and the therapeutic relationship Practitioner self-care strategies to minimise vicarious traumatisation Practitioner vicarious post traumatic growth

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