Advanced TrainingsBrilliant at the Basics

Next Advanced Training:Brilliant at the Basics

24-26 March 2018 Sydney, Australia

8-10 October 2018, Pretoria, South Africa

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We are very excited to be bringing to the community a new series of Advanced Trainings. These 4 courses have been designed to help both novice and experienced Imago Therapists deepen and expand their clinical skills. Together, they form a cohesive and comprehensive training, intended to bring you to a higher level of clinical excellence. From this point forward, these 4 courses along with Characterological Growth, will be considered the core curriculum to become an Advanced Certified Imago Therapist (see below).

Each of the courses integrates the latest theoretical material with practical application, providing skills and techniques that you can directly apply in your work with couples. We have sought to include material that most meets the needs of Imago Therapists, including:

  • Mastery of Clinical Skills
  • Working Effectively with Reactivity and Anger
  • Attachment Styles
  • Therapist Attunement
  • Sex/sexuality/affairs
  • Giving and Receiving Love
  • Mindfulness and Body Awareness
  • Neurobiology
  • Transference and Counter-transference
  • and much, much more!

The names of the four courses are:

  1. Advanced Clinical Skills 1--Brilliant at the Basics
  2. The Attuned Therapist--Working with Reactivity and Resistance
  3. From Despair to Repair--Helping Couples Heal and Grow Through Crisis
  4. Giving and Receiving Love--Living Wholeheartedly

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Certified Imago Therapists are free to take any or all of these courses. We hope that many of you will sign up for all of the Advanced Courses, and take advantage of the discounts for registering for two or more courses at a time. Since we will be bringing all four courses to many locations, we also hope that you and your local colleagues will be able to attend together. Two of these course(Advanced Clinical Skills, and From Despair to Repair) will be presented at the pre-conference in New Orleans in October. The other two will be presented at next year's pre-conference. We will be announcing a preliminary schedule of course offerings in many locations around the globe very soon.

Following is a brief description of the 4 courses:

Advanced Clinical Skills 1--Brilliant at the Basics

This course is designed to review, deepen and expand the theory and clinical skills taught in the Basic Clinical Training. You will learn to move beyond the mechanics of facilitation, and learn the artful and creative use of sentence stems, doubling, and focusing. You will also learn to integrate the four "meta theories" of Imago with these deepening tools, making the theory practical in everyday use with couples. This also gives the therapist a lens to make interventions based on the couples' level of differentiation, safety, and developmental stage.

Video clips will be used to show the dynamic of a couple before an intervention, the intervention, and how the dynamic of the couple changes after the intervention. Through lecture, video-tape, live demonstration and practice, you will deepen your understanding and ability to effectively move couples into vulnerability, connection and repair. Our goal is that you leave this training with an expanded understanding of how and why to use different interventions at different times, and to support you in being creative within the structure of the dialogue process.

Giving and Receiving Love--Living Wholeheartedly

The fundamental dilemma of all human relationships is this: Why is it so hard to give and receive love when it is part of our survival directive to be connected? To better understand this dilemma and the solution, we will explore the "software" that we are born with. The pulse of both giving and receiving is vital to the experience of connection. If we are blocked in either direction, we become isolated and lose the experience of connection. In this course, we will explore: Blocks to giving; blocks to receiving; the way our picture of relationships determine not only who we pick, but also the way we play out the relational dance. We will explore how our ability to regulate the giving/receiving pulsation effects our emotional, spiritual,intellectual, and physical connections. We will use video-tapes,demonstrations, practice, movement, conversation and written exercises both to explore ourselves and to equip us clinically with ideas and strategies to help our clients do the same.

From Despair to Repair: Helping Couples Heal and Grow Through Crisis

In the face of a couple's crisis, there are three different perspectives for the therapist to consider. The first perspective works for, and from, the 'between' of the relationship – the focus is on the interpersonal; the second, uses relational neuroscience as a map for inner attunement; and the third, helps the therapist with his/her own counter-transference and use of "self." The end-point of all three perspectives is to provide the therapist with skills for helping couples move from Despair and Rupture to Repair and Connection. Using the principles of interpersonal attunement and intrapersonal attunement will provide a map of the terrain that needs to be covered when working with couples in crisis. Having a clear navigational system that includes exploring counter-transference reactions will ultimately enable us to effectively help couples heal and grow through crisis.

The Attuned Therapist – Working with Reactivity and Resistance

As therapists we expect a little chaos. However, there are couples who just seem to challenge us every step of the way. As we deepen our understanding of the relational paradigm, we will explore how to use our centered, embodied and attuned presence to assist clients to make sense of and shift the anxiety which triggers their reactivity.

We will use an attachment and developmental lens to understand the dynamic cycle underlying the core struggles between maximizer and minimizer and to identify the unmet needs and defensive adaptations which drive the power struggle. We will learn interventions to assist couples to co-regulate affect and move toward each other, thus enabling greater connection, safety and empathy.

Through the use of video clips, role plays, demonstrations and didactic material we will create an interactive, fun and dynamic learning environment in which to focus on our own inner attunement, recognize our resistance, grow in compassion and deepen our clinical skills.

Advanced Clinician:

Effective immediately, the new requirements for Advanced Clinician designation are:

Attendance at 4 of 5 courses, which includes the New Advanced Trainings, and Characterological Growth. Credit toward one of these courses will be given if you have already attended the Singles Training; and an additional credit if you have completed 12 hours of individual or 24 hours of group supervision. (These credits will be given for attendance prior to January 1, 2014). Please contact the IRI office when you have completed the requirements to receive your certification.

Workshop Presenter Training:

Effective immediately, the new pre-requisites for Workshop Presenter Training will be: attendance at Characterological Growth, plus 2 of the other 4 Advanced Trainings listed above. (Credit will be given for the Singles Training instead of the other 2 Courses until January 1, 2014).