Two Day Introduction to Compassion Focused Therapy – London
Compassion Focused Therapy (CFT) was developed by Professor Paul Gilbert to work with people with severe and enduring mental health problems, many of whom had high levels of shame and self-criticism.
Research has highlighted that shame and self-criticism are transdiagnostic (e.g. higher levels are found in people with depression, anxiety disorders, eating disorders, personality disorders, PTSD) and can accentuate and maintain these disorders. Moreover, high levels of self-criticism have also been found to limit the effectiveness of standard therapies. One reason for such difficulties is that people may not have developed abilities to experience certain affiliative positive emotions such as safeness, reassurance and compassion. These individuals often come from abusive/bullying, neglectful and/or critical backgrounds. Compassion Focused Therapy (CFT) was developed with, and for, people from such backgrounds who find it difficult to stimulate certain types of positive emotion.
Participants will learn about the model underpinning CFT, rooted in evolutionary understanding of the development of mind, neuroscience, neurophysiological and attachment research helping to understanding the nature of our three basic emotions regulation systems, and our understanding the development and function of shame and self-criticism. We will also explore various definitions and components of compassion, and how by developing a ‘compassionate mind’, we may help people to work with their shame and self-criticism.
Participants will learn about the key skills and approaches used in CFT to develop a ‘compassionate mind’, including compassion based imagery, including the development of a compassionate self, and how compassion may be ‘put to work’ to engage in distress and suffering.
Workshop approaches will include:
Small and large group discussion
Individual experiential practice
Pair/group experiential, role play and skills practice