YWCA, 87 Elm Street,
With Chris Germer and Shari Geller
Join Chris and Shari for a 2-day workshop on self-compassion and therapeutic presence. This first-of-its-kind workshop will show clinicians how to cultivate a combination of presence and self-compassion in their own lives and teach it to clients.
Therapeutic presence (TP) lies at the heart of a positive treatment alliance. When practicing therapeutic presence, clinicians use their whole self—physically, emotionally, cognitively and spiritually—to be receptively attuned and deeply engaged with the client, moment-by-moment. TP provides a neurophysiological sense of safety in clients that allows them to be seen, heard, understood, and “feel felt.”
Self-compassion (MSC) involves the capacity to comfort and soothe ourselves, and to motivate ourselves with encouragement, when we struggle, fail, or feel inadequate. It is a key resource that enables clinicians to be fully present and attuned with clients. Burgeoning research shows that self-compassion is strongly associated with emotional wellbeing, lower levels of anxiety and depression, coping with life challenges, healthy habits like diet and exercise, and more satisfying relationships.
TP and MSC are trans-theoretical mechanisms of change in psychotherapy and the emotional heart of mindfulness when we meet suffering. Together, therapeutic presence and self-compassion are a powerful resource for clinicians to maintain emotional balance in the midst of challenging clinical work, to enjoy their work and their clients more fully, and to prevent caregiver fatigue.
Clients benefit from their therapists’ presence and compassion because our nervous systems are constantly resonating–trading information bi-direcitonally–with one another. Clients also experience their therapists’ presence and compassion as a secure base from which to explore their life challenges.
The skills of therapeutic presence and self-compassion can be practiced and learned by all clinicians. Therapeutic presence is a special form of mindfulness—mindfulness in and of relationship. Adding self-compassion to the mix enables therapists to return to presence when they are hijacked by difficult emotions. Together, therapeutic presence and self-compassion are a powerful resource for clinicians to maintain emotional balance in the midst of challenging clinical work, to enjoy their work and their clients more fully, and to prevent caregiver fatigue.
WHAT TO EXPECT:
In this workshop, participants will receive an in-depth understanding of Shari Geller’s empirically-supported Therapeutic Presence (TP) model, and be able to practice key skills from that training program. Participants will also learn the core principles and practices of the 8-week Mindful Self-Compassion (MSC) course developed by Chris Germer and Kristin Neff. Points of synergy between the two programs will be illuminated throughout the workshop so clinicians can build these practices seamlessly into their personal and professional lives.
Since presence and self-compassion need to be directly experienced to be understood, this workshop will be largely experiential, including meditation, musical rhythm, imagery, and creative exercises. It will also contain short lectures, class exercises, videos, poetry, and group discussion. Participants will receive instructions to a wide variety of practices that can be practiced at home, and also taught to clients, students, and trainees.
Top 8 Reasons to Attend This Workshop:
- Explain the meaning of therapeutic presence and self-compassion.
- Describe an empirically-validated model of therapeutic presence along with key skills for cultivating presence in psychotherapy.
- Discover the research evidence for the benefits of presence, compassion, and self-compassion in psychotherapy and in life.
- Clarify how therapeutic presence combined with compassion promotes effective therapy.
- Practice presence and self-compassion techniques during therapy and in life to sustain emotional connection in challenging therapeutic interactions.
- Experience how self-compassion alleviates self-criticism and shame.
- Apply presence and self-compassion skills for self-care and to prevent and alleviate caregiving fatigue.
- Help clients and patients cultivate mindful presence and self-compassion skills.