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Events and Happenings
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Monday, April 6th 2020

*online* EFT for PTSD and Complex PTSD

Sandra Paivio
presented by Ananda Mental Health Workshops

Psychotherapy clients with histories of childhood abuse and neglect (complex relational/developmental trauma) are ubiquitous across diagnostic groups and often have high drop-out rates. These clients have been unable to heal past emotional injuries and can have difficulty handling exposure-based therapies, which usually are not designed for attachment related problems. Nonetheless, successful therapy requires helping clients to access and explore painful feelings and memories in order to modify maladaptive emotions (e.g., fear and shame) and construct more adaptive meaning and narratives regarding self, others, and traumatic events.

This Workshop is designed to introduce participants to the general principles of emotion-focused therapies with a specific focus on how this approach is tailored to the needs of clients dealing with complex trauma. Emotion-Focused Therapy for Trauma (EFTT) is an evidence- based approach with more than twenty years of research demonstrating treatment efficacy and supporting posited in-session processes of change.

Day One of this Workshop will first present the nature of complex trauma and the central roles of attachment relationships and emotional processes in the development of disturbance. The workshop then will present basic principles of emotion-focused therapies, followed by the EFTT treatment model, how EFTT addresses central features of disturbance, and distinctive features and advantages of EFTT compared to other treatment approaches. This will be followed by intervention guidelines and strategies used in the Early Phase of therapy. These include helping clients to disclose painful trauma material in the context of a safe and empathically responsive therapeutic relationship, assessing core emotional processing difficulties, and introducing the primary exposure-based procedure used in therapy – Imaginal Confrontation of perpetrators in an empty-chair.

Day Two will present guidelines and strategies for the Middle and Late Phases of therapy. These include a less stressful alternative to the Imaginal Confrontation procedure, interventions to help deepen emotional processing, reduce fear/avoidance and shame, access self-soothing capacities, and finally resolve issues with perpetrators of abuse and neglect and heal attachment injuries. The Workshop will conclude by presenting a case example of working with maladaptive anger and avoidant attachment followed over the course of therapy. Numerous videotaped examples will be presented throughout the Workshop to illustrate key therapy principles and processes, and discussion of treatment issues will be encouraged.

Learning Objectives

Workshop participants will learn:

The nature of complex trauma and the central role of emotional processes in disturbance
The EFTT treatment model and how therapy uniquely addresses central features of disturbance
Intervention principles for:
Cultivating a safe and collaborative therapeutic relationship
Assessing client emotional processing difficulties
Helping clients to re-experience and reprocess trauma feelings and memories
Helping clients to imaginally confront and resolve issues with perpetrators of abuse and neglect
Reducing client fear/avoidance and shame
Accessing client self-soothing capacities

Sandra C. Paivio, PhD., Certified Psychologist

Sandra Paivio maintains a private practice in Toronto, Canada, provides individual psychotherapy and clinical training at the York University Psychology Clinic, and is Professor Emeritus in the Psychology Department at the University of Windsor. She is one of the developers of emotion-focused therapy, particularly applied to complex trauma (EFTT), has conducted clinical trials evaluating the efficacy and processes of change in EFTT, and is author of numerous publications on trauma and psychotherapy. These include Working with Emotion in Psychotherapy (with Les Greenberg), Emotion-Focused Therapy for Complex Trauma (with (Antonio Pascual-Leone), and Narrative Processes in Emotion-focused Therapy for Trauma (with Lynne Angus). Dr. Paivio is featured in several DVDs published by the American Psychological Association, has presented numerous clinical training workshops internationally on EFTT, and received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Trauma Section of the Canadian Psychological Association (2014) for her contributions to research and training in treatment for complex trauma.

Approved for ­­12 hours of MDPAC Group CE credits and 2 hours of MDPAC CCI credits


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