Full Course Description

Margaret Wehrenberg on Effective Anxiety Treatment

Program Information


  • Brain Involvement in Anxiety
    • The benefit of Neuroscience on Counseling
  • Pharmacology & Managing Anxiety
    • When Medication is beneficial in anxiety treatment
    • Limits of Medication on Treatment Outcomes
  • The Amygdala: The Brain’s Smoke Detector
    • Change as an Indicator of Danger or Safety
    • Choosing whether and how to respond to danger
    • Safety Cues: The Foundation of Healthy Attachment
  • Anxiety Treatment
    • Managing Cues
    • Desensitization to Cues
    • Removing Unnecessary Environmental Cues
  • Memory Reconsolidation
    • Systematic Desensitization
    • Pairing a bad experience with a new positive experience
    • The importance of re-experiencing in a safe environment
  • Preparation for Successful Exposure (The 3 C’s)
    • Calm
    • Competent
    • Confidence
  • Catastrophic Thinking & Reducing Anxiety
    • Identifying
    • Reframing
  • Rumination
    • Function of Worry on Anxiety
    • Anxiety as a Feeling prior to Thought
    • Planning for Productive Thinking
      • Choose the right problem
      • Evaluate the Plan
      • Manage Worry
    • Functions of Rumination
      • Secondary Gain
      • Do I need this thought?
      • When do I need this thought?
  • Sitting with Anxiety
    • Contain it in time
    • Be Situation Specific
    • Grounding benefit of ritual
  • The Fear of Being Afraid
    • Advantage and Disadvantage of Avoidance
    • Anxiety and Perfectionism
  • TMA: Too Much Activity

    • Overscheduling Stress
    • Managing anxiety by being busy
    • Busyness and Generalized Anxiety
    • Busyness as Socially Desirable Pathology
  • Mindfulness

    • Restoring a Sense of Connectivity
  • Neurological differences between Anxiety & Depression

    • Similarities in Rumination
  • Anxiety & Anger

    • Reducing Anger as an Anxiety Reduction Strategy


  • Articulate the role of the brain and neuroscience in anxiety symptom expression and effective anxiety treatment
  • Identify key components of effective anxiety treatment including appropriate psychopharmacological and mindfulness practices
  • Differentiate between anxiety and co-occurring symptomatology such as depression, anger, and over-activity

Copyright : 08/01/2018

Calming the Anxious Brain

Program Information


  1. Use examples to illustrate how the anxious brain functions and how to use that information in session to improve treatment outcomes. 
  2. Describe the role of the amygdala and cortex in maintaining anxiety disorders s for purposes of client psychoeducation. 
  3. Explain how learning about the neuroscience of anxiety can improve client engagement. 
  4. Use neurologically informed CBT techniques to help clients reduce anxious responding by making changes in both the cortex and the amygdala. 



  • Disclosures
  • Limitations
  • Scope of Practice
  • Learning Objectives

Using Neuroscience in the Treatment of Anxiety

  • Neuroscience & Anxiety
  • Neuroscience & Therapists
  • Using Neuroscience to Enhance Client Engagement
  • Treatment Goal Selection
  • Neuropsychologically Informed CBT
  • Neuroplasticity
  • Reconsolidation
  • Two Pathways to Anxiety

Understanding Anxiety in the Brain: The Amygdala Pathway

  • Fight, Flight, Freeze
  • Language of the Amygdala 
  • Triggers Created in the Amygdala
  • Neuroplasticity in the Amygdala
  • Amygdala-Focused Interventions

Understanding Anxiety in the Brain: The Cortex Pathway

  • Relationship between the Cortex & Amygdala
  • Neuroplasticity in the Cortex
  • Cortex-Based Interventions

Copyright : 03/22/2019

Mastering the Anxiety Game: Teaching Clients to Welcome Their Fears

Program Information


Introduction to anxiety disorders and treatment methods

  • Protocol to apply to all anxiety disorders
  • Overview of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and other specific anxiety disorder treatment methods

Experiencing the treatment of anxiety disorders

  • Video demonstrations of cognitive behavioral therapy in-session
  • Summary and analysis video sessions
  • Discussion of anxiety and trauma

Question and answer session with Reid Wilson and concluding remarks

  • Final remarks about in-session videos
  • Reid Wilson answers audience questions about treating anxiety disorders


  1. Explain how to rapidly engage anxious clients in the therapeutic alliance and change their mindset toward their fears.
  2. Identify why the first step to changing an overwhelming response to anxiety is accepting the perceived threat as something the client can approach and change.
  3. Implement strategies to help clients transform their fear into a challenge to be met or a puzzle to be solved.

Copyright : 03/17/2016

Disrupting Rumination: Changing the Cognitions that Underlie Anxiety and Depression

Program Information


  1. Articulate methods to help clients identify perfectionism in thought and behavior and explore treatment interventions to decrease symptoms of anxiety.
  2. Implement strategies for stress management to reduce symptoms of anxiety in clients, including lifestyle changes, cognitive interventions and time management tools.
  3. Evaluate the negative impact of rumination on the brain structure and function to inform the clinician’s choice of treatment interventions.
  4. Ascertain the underlying neurological processes that impact depression symptoms in clients.


Rumination as The Link Between Anxiety and Depression

  • Brief look at brain structure/function contributions
  • The purpose of worry: cognitive mis-steps
  • Explore the impact of guilt and interventions for guilt
Manage Worry
  • Contain your worry in time
  • Invite the worry
  • Identify and alter “magical worry”
The Impact of Stress and 4 Competencies to Prevent Stress Damage on Health, Anxiety and Depression
  • Eliminate the Stressor
  • Manage time and environment
  • Manage Attitude
  • Practice Rest and Relaxation
Perfectionism and the Too Much Activity (TMA) person
  • Perfectionism in thought and behavior and interrupt its negative effects
  • When procrastination is perfectionism in disguise
A look at Depression - Raising Energy and Altering Cognitions
  • Altering the neural networks that keep rumination in place
“Born to be blue” - Spotting and altering the impact of endogenous depression
  • Change the network on purpose - “Start where you already are”
  • "Charge the batteries” to raise energy
Situational Stressors
  • Setting boundaries and utilizing help
  • Mobilizing energy to respond
Interrupt helplessness
  • Utilize mentors or lifelines
  • Focus on strengths
Positive Impacts of Early Life Adversity
  • Prepare to stay connected
  • Changing Explanatory style
  • Gratitude assignments

Copyright : 03/23/2018

Ron Siegel on Befriending Worry and Anxiety through Mindfulness Practices

Program Information


  • Befriending Worry & Anxiety         
    • Feeling & Embracing Fear While Maintaining Healthy Functioning
    • The Misdirection of Minimizing Fear       
      • Misunderstanding of Anxiety as Dangerous
  • Mindfulness Concept
    • Increasing Our Capacity to Bear Experience
    • Developing a Higher Resolution Consciousness
      • Noticing & Being More Sensitive to Life Experience
      • Feeling Anxiety Vividly Without Getting into Avoidance Behavior Traps
    • Client Resistance to Feeing Anxiety
      • The Essence of Anxiety Disorders is Avoidance of Anxiety
      • Develop the Resources to Feel Anxiety
        • Coping Mechanisms Lose Effectiveness Over Time
  • Curing Anxiety
    • Curing is Learning to No Longer Fear the Anxiety
      • Being at Home with the Anxiety
      • Fully Embracing the Full Range of Human Psychological Experience & Emotion
      • Connecting with Ourselves Through Our Emotions & Experience
      • Decrease in Using Psychic Resources to Avoid the Problem
    • Feelings are Impermanent; Resistance of Feelings Creates Recurrent Patterns of Anxiety
  • The Nuts & Bolts of Applied Mindfulness
    • Identify Fears
    • Identify Recursive Patterns
      • Internal Fears of One’s Own Thoughts & Feelings
    • Identify Impaired Functioning
  • Mindfulness Practices
    • Designed to Help Us Be Aware of Present Experience
    • Acceptance of Present Experience
    • Sensory Awareness
    • Metacognitive Awareness
  • What to Do with Physical Discomfort
    • Allow the Sensations of Discomfort to be the Focus of Awareness
      • Initial Amplification of Feelings
      • Changes in Feelings
      • Passing of Feelings
      • Identify Other Emotions Underlying the Feelings
    • Examples: Panic Attacks, Psychedelic Trips
  • Therapists & Mindfulness
    • Resources: www.mindfulness-solutions.com
    • Therapists Practice Mindfulness
    • Treatment Goals
      • Loosen the Pre-Occupation with Self
      • Highlight Our Motivations
      • Notice Our Desire to Hold onto Pleasure
      • Recognize that “I, Me, & Mine” Can Create Suffering
  • The Future of Anxiety Treatment & Mindfulness Practice
    • A Professional Shifting Away from Avoiding Anxiety
  • Difficulty Identifying to What Degree Coping Strategies Should be Used
    • Therapists Practicing Mindfulness
    • Mindfulness as the Antidote to Addictive Behaviors
    • Mindfulness as Transformative
      • Pros & Cons


  • Compare mindfulness to traditional avoidance-based treatments for anxiety and evaluate mindfulness as an effective treatment option for anxiety.
  • Articulate the nature of anxiety, the behaviors that create patterns of anxiety, and the role of symbolism in maintaining anxiety.
  • Analyze the use of mindfulness techniques to increase our capacity to bear uncomfortable experiences and overcome anxiety through present experience rather than avoidance.

Copyright : 07/18/2018

Lynn Lyons on Treating Anxiety in Children

Program Information


  • Causes of Anxiety in Children
    • Family History
    • Significant Events
  • Understanding the Difference between Worry & Anxiety
    • Cognitive Thoughts
    • Physical Feelings
  • Differences between Child and Adult Manifestations of Anxiety
    • Patterns of Avoidance
  • Impact of Anxious Parents on Children
    • Well-Intentioned Catastrophizing
    • Parent-Only Anxiety Treatment
  • Impact of Society’s Tendency toward Distraction on Anxiety
    • Distracting vs. Pivoting
  • Practical Techniques for Anxiety Treatment
    • “Of Course” Normalizing Worry
    • Externalizing & Naming Worry
    • Proactive Responses to Worry
  • Interactions Between Anxiety and Depression
    • Tendency Toward Isolation
  • The Role of the Therapist in Anxiety Treatment
    • Hope & Expectancy       


  • Differentiate between child and adult experiences and manifestations of anxiety for more effective treatment outcomes.
  • Demonstrate practical techniques and strategies for reframing our understanding of the role of anxiety and reducing symptoms of anxiety to improve client functioning.

Copyright : 03/05/2019