Janina Fisher, PhD
Leading Edge Seminars, Inc
Koffler House/Multi-Faith Centre, University of Toronto, 569 Spadina Avenue, Toronto
Therapists regularly confront the insidious impact of shame on their clients’ ability to find relief and perspective after trauma. Feelings of worthlessness and inadequacy interfere with taking in positive experiences, leaving only hopelessness. Increased ability for self-assertion gets undermined by belief systems about worth or deserving. Progress in the treatment or greater success in life evoke shame and self-judgment rather than pride. Despite the therapist's best efforts, unshakeable feelings of shame and self-hatred often undermine treatment: the client repeatedly takes two steps forward, then one step back.
This workshop will introduce participants to an understanding of shame from a neurobiological perspective — as a survival strategy driving somatic responses of automatic obedience and "total submission". Using lecture, videotape, and experiential exercises drawn from Sensorimotor Psychotherapy (a body-oriented talking therapy), participants will learn to help clients relate to their symptoms with mindful awareness and curiosity rather than passive resignation. When traditional psychodyanamic and cognitive-behavioural techniques are integrated with Sensorimotor interventions emphasizing posture, movement, and gesture, issues of shame can become an avenue to transformation rather than a source of “stuckness”.
You will learn —
How to turn shame into an avenue of transformation instead of a source of stuckness
The neurobiological effects of traumatic experience
How to help clients appreciate the role of shame and self-loathing in traumatic experience
The basic principles and techniques of Sensorimotor Psychotherapy
How therapeutic mindfulness can somatically address the effects of shame-related feelings/cognitions
Three Sensorimotor techniques to treat distorted cognitions
Three Sensorimotor interventions for shifting shame states at a body level
How to help clients decrease fear of positive affect and increase their tolerance for positive affect
About the Presenter:
Janina Fisher, PhD, is a licensed clinical psychologist and instructor at the Trauma Center, founded by Bessel van der Kolk. As a faculty member of the Sensorimotor Psychotherapy Institute, an EMDR International Association consultant, past president of the New England Society for the Treatment of Trauma and Dissociation, and former instructor at Harvard Medical School, Dr. Fisher lectures across the US and internationally on the integration of the neurobiological research and new trauma treatment paradigms into traditional psychotherapies. For more info, please visit www.janinafisher.com.