February 2023

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Complex Trauma & Challenging Client Presentations: Addressing 5 Clinical Dilemmas with Mindfulness, Compassion and Resilience

February 20 – 24, 2023   |   9:00 am – 12:30 pm daily   |   USD$949 / CAD$1,234

Presented by John Briere

Reserve your spot
John Briere - Working With Trauma Survivors

You're invited to a free bonus evening program!

For you, your partner and/or traveling companions
See below for details.

About this workshop

Discover a mindfulness approach to maintaining resilience and compassion when working with complex trauma and challenging client presentations.

In this new workshop, Dr. Briere will describe five major clinical dilemmas often encountered by clinicians working with complex trauma in adolescents and adults:

  1. Self-injury
  2. Active substance abuse
  3. Major dissociative symptoms (other than DID)
  4. Sexualized behavior, including with the clinician
  5. Angry and challenging behavior directed toward the therapist

John will describe hands-on, evidence-based treatment approaches for each of these client presentations that are technically validated but nonauthoritarian and empowering. Equally important, he will discuss ways in which the therapist can foster mindfulness, self-compassion, and attunement to avoid triggered countertransference and maximize self-care.

Attendees will learn mindfulness-informed approaches that reduce reactivity and burn-out when working with challenging clients and issues. John will show how appreciation of the client’s suffering can be balanced with self-attunement skills to allow the clinician to maintain a form of objectivity (dispassionate compassion) wherein the client is fully engaged but the therapist does not become enmeshed in unhelpful dynamics.

Multiple opportunities for case consultation and collegial group discussion will be provided as well focused skills development exercises like the mindfulness based “ReGAIN” approach to triggered countertransference.

From his early work on childhood trauma to his ongoing visionary integration of mindfulness, relational issues, and psychotherapy, as well as his 15 books and decades of teaching, workshops, and consultations to thousands of therapists and trainees, John Briere’s innovative approaches to helping trauma survivors have influenced generations of psychotherapists. The newest of his contributions include two upcoming books: Principles of Trauma Therapy: A Guide to Symptoms, Evaluation & Treatment, 3rd edition (Sage, late 2023) and Psychological Assessment of Adult Posttraumatic States, 3rd edition (APA, in progress).

Learning Objectives

  • Explore trigger management techniques that can be used with clients, including trigger identification, breath-based relaxation, grounding, urge-surfing, and harm reduction approaches.

  • Explore modern clinical approaches to five emotionally activating clinical presentations, including indications and counterindications.

  • Learn how to cultivate mindful attunement in the face of extreme client suffering, using the Buddhist notion of “inviting pain to tea.”

  • Learn how to maintain equanimity and grow as a therapist when working with challenging clients and situations.

  • Learn about dispassionate compassion as it relates to work with challenging clients.

  • Establish metacognitive awareness of one’s own trauma history in work with trauma clients as a way to reduce emotional reactivity.

  • Practice a ReGAINing exercise that deescalates triggered countertransference.

CE Credits

US CE credits pending.

Already registered for this workshop?

Highlights from John's October 27 virtual Q&A
You're invited to a free evening program with Dr. Tammy Nelson!
Tammy Nelson - Innovations in Psychotherapy Cancun

Thursday, February 23, 2023, at 8:00 pm


Tammy Nelson, PhD, a recognized expert in couples’ relationships, is also leading a workshop this year concurrently with John’s workshop. Tammy will be presenting a free evening program during the week on… you guessed it… couples’ relationships—and you’re invited!

All attendees of both John’s workshop and Tammy’s workshop (plus their partners and/or traveling companions) are invited and eligible to participate in this complimentary, fun and interactive, special bonus event.

This free special evening program with Tammy is not a ‘training’, but rather an enjoyable, lighthearted look at couples today.

Tammy will share more about this complimentary bonus evening program at our opening night reception on Sunday, February 19.

Additional Workshop Details

Target Audience:
Marriage and Family Therapists, Clinical and Counseling Psychologists, Psychiatric Social Workers, Pastoral Counselors, Psychotherapists, Psychiatrists, Physicians, Nurse Practitioners, Occupational Therapists, Counselors, Graduate Students in Accredited Programs in these fields

What level of knowledge should the attendee have in this topic?
Intermediate/Advanced

Daily Workshop Agenda

Time Frame Content (Topics)
DAY 1
9:00 am – 10:45 am Self-injury
Etiology
Interventions
10:45 am – 11:00 am Morning break
11:00 am – 12:30 pm Risk and countertransference management, metacognitive awareness, self-attunement
Discussion and optional attendee case presentations
DAY 2
9:00 am – 9:15 am Q&A
9:15 am – 10:45 am Active substance abuse
Etiology
Interventions
10:45 am – 11:00 am Morning break
11:00 am – 12:30 pm Discussion and optional attendee case presentations
DAY 3
9:00 am – 9:15 am Q&A
9:15 am – 10:45 am Major dissociative symptoms (other than DID)
Etiology
Interventions
10:45 am – 11:00 am Morning break
11:00 am – 12:30 pm Discussion and optional attendee case presentations
DAY 4
9:00 am – 9:15 am Q&A
9:15 am – 10:45 am Sexualized behavior, including with the clinician
Etiology
Interventions
10:45 am – 11:00 am Morning break
11:00 am – 12:30 pm Discussion and optional attendee case presentations
DAY 5
9:00 am – 9:15 am Q&A
9:15 am – 10:45 am Angry and challenging behavior directed toward the therapist
Etiology
Interventions
10:45 am – 11:00 am Morning break
11:00 am – 12:15 pm Risk and countertransference management, metacognitive awareness, self-attunement
ReGAIN for countertransference
12:15 pm – 12:30 pm Discussion and optional attendee case presentations

*Breaks not applicable for CEs.

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