Most modes of psychotherapy believe to have “parts” is pathological. NOT in Internal Family Systems (IFS). In IFS, the idea of multiplicity of the mind is normal. Every part has a good intention, and every part has value. Even for trauma survivors.
In the treatment of trauma, IFS is different from traditional phase-oriented treatments. Instead of starting with building resources in clients before processing traumatic memories, it welcomes extreme symptoms from the onset, learns about their positive protective intentions and gets their permission to access the traumatic wounds. IFS also differs from traditional attachment focused therapies, both value the therapeutic relationship; however, IFS additionally supports the relationship between the client’s “Self” and their part as the primary healing agent.
Hailed by Dr. van der Kolk, the world’s leading expert in trauma, IFS is the treatment method that all clinicians should know. Nearly all clients with a trauma history have innate abilities that help them improve their mental health if they listen to their parts. IFS does just that. IFS is an evidence-based approach for clinicians working with traumatized clients. Once you see it in action, you’ll want to incorporate it into your practice.
Join IFS and trauma expert Frank Anderson, MD, colleague of Dr. Bessel van der Kolk and Dr. Richard Schwartz, in this transformational certificate training.
Clients will leave your office with skills to use outside the therapy room to help them master their emotions. This experiential training will show video demonstrations and include exercises and meditation techniques to use with your clients.
Frank Anderson, MD, completed his residency and was a clinical instructor in psychiatry at Harvard Medical School. He is both a psychiatrist and psychotherapist. He specialises in the treatment of trauma and dissociation and is passionate about teaching brain-based psychotherapy and integrating current neuroscience knowledge with the IFS model of therapy.
Dr. Anderson is the vice chair and director of the Foundation for Self Leadership. He is a trainer at the Center for Self Leadership with Richard Schwartz, PhD, and maintains a long affiliation with, and trains for, Bessel van der Kolk’s Trauma Center at Justice Resource Center in Boston, MA.
Dr. Anderson has lectured extensively on the Neurobiology of PTSD and Dissociation and wrote the chapter “Who’s Taking What” Connecting Neuroscience, Psychopharmacology and Internal Family Systems for Trauma in Internal Family Systems Therapy-New Dimensions. He co-authored a chapter on “What IFS Brings to Trauma Treatment in Innovations and Elaborations in Internal Family Systems Therapy” and recently co-authored Internal Family Systems Skills Training Manual.
Dr. Anderson maintains a private practice in Concord, MA, and serves as an Advisor to the International Association of Trauma Professionals (IATP).
Treating the Various Types of Trauma
Complex or relational trauma
Developmental and attachment traumas
Extreme or dissociative trauma
Internal Family Systems (IFS): Healing of Emotional Wounds
The origins, goals & assumptions
A non-pathologizing, accelerated approach, rooted in neuroscience
Different from phase-oriented treatment
The importance of our protective responses
Deal with emotional overwhelm head-on
Multiplicity of the mind – we all have parts
Healing at the cellular level
Study limitations: small sample size, no control group
Clinical considerations for clients experiencing abuse
Manage Common Co-Morbidities
Depression, panic attacks, substance abuse, eating disorders, ADD and OCD
A non-pathological approach
Comorbidities as protective responses to trauma
Symptoms as “parts of the self”
Differentiate Therapeutic Issues from Biological Conditions
Intersection of biology and situation (“Real Mind-Body Medicine”)
Therapist’s role in biology – When to refer and when to work it through
Psychotherapy of psychopharmacology
The IFS Technique
Step 1: Identify the Target Symptom
Identify the “target symptom”
Apply meditation practices
Separate the person (self) from the symptom
Learn about its intention
Step 2: Gain Access to Internal Strengths & Resource for Healing
Move from defensiveness to curiosity
The “Self” of the therapist-countertransference redefined
Access compassion to open the pathways toward healing
Role of empathy in healing – the benefits and the downsides
Step 3: Find the Fear and Function of the Symptom
Focusing on its fear
The real story behind the symptom
Foster the internal relationship
Attachment Disorders and Relational Trauma
IFS as internal attachment work
Attachment styles as parts of self
Attachment trauma – the role of the therapist
Heal relational wounds of childhood
Client’s “Self” as the corrective object
Work with preverbal trauma
The Neurobiology of Trauma
Neuroscience for therapists – what you need to know
Fear circuitry and the development of PTSD
Extreme reactions and Autonomic Nervous System
Rage to suicide and dissociation to shame
Dealing with the Extreme Reactions of Trauma
Talk directly to the symptom-direct access
Introducing the part to the “Self”
Deal with the overwhelm – no need for building resources
Therapist parts – How to stay clear and calm while working with clients in extreme states
How Neuroscience Informs Therapeutic Decisions
Top-down and bottom-up strategies rooted in neuroscience
When it’s necessary to take over and “be the auxiliary brain” for your client
Sensing vs. making sense of things
At home strategies
Step 4: Healing of Traumatic Wounds:
Three phases to healing:
Witness the pain
Remove the wounded part out of the past
Let go of the feelings, thoughts and beliefs
Science behind the healing – memory reconsolidation
Integrate IFS into Your Treatment Approach
EMDR, DBT, Sensorimotor/SE and other methods
Transformation vs adaptation or rehabilitation
Going beyond the cognitive (experiential therapies)
Integrate IFS with your current clinical approach
Live demonstrations Meditations Practice sessions
Integrate the IFS model into your clinical practice and accelerate the healing from complex trauma.
Identify, specify and clarify the protective parts of clients with trauma histories to help with assessment and treatment planning.
Offer an alternative view of symptoms and psychopathology, showing how client’s parts are actually trying to protect them from emotional pain and psychological pain.
Demonstrate how IFS translates common comorbidities into parts language, showing a non-pathological perspective of mental health disorders.
Communicate how IFS increases the therapist’s curious and compassionate self when working with clients who have trauma histories.
Differentiate a therapeutic issue from a biological condition for better decision making in your clinical practice.
Compare traditional attachment theory perspectives on healing to the IFS view (an internal attachment model) and learn to trust the clients’ internal relationship to heal their traumatic wounds.
Understand how to respond to the extreme symptoms of trauma by determining if they are rooted in sympathetic activation or parasympathetic withdrawal.
Demonstrate IFS specific therapeutic techniques that shift arousal and withdrawal, allowing quicker access to clients’ traumatic vulnerabilities.
Develop a deep understanding of how neuroscience informs therapeutic decisions in IFS therapy.
Integrate IFS with your current treatment approaches including EMDR, DBT, and Sensorimotor Psychotherapy.
Compare IFS to traditional phase-oriented treatment and learn accelerated ways of accessing and healing traumatic wounds.
Marriage and Family Therapists
Other Professionals Who Work within the Mental Health Fields
Additional Participant CE must be purchased for each additional viewer. These viewers will watch the video with the main registrant, but will have individual access to course handouts and certification. The standard price of this program includes certification for main viewer.