Full Course Description

Addictive Behavior as the Problem

Program Information


Introduction to co-existence of substance abuse and mental health issues within clients

  • Introduction to trauma and addications in clients
  • Introduction to trauma' impact on children
Experiencing Sensorimotor Psychotherapy with trauma
  • Helping Clients Reduce Their Shame
  • In-depth overview of Sensorimotor Psychotherapy

Target Audience

Addiction Counselors, Counselors, Marriage and Family Therapists, Nurses, Psychologists, Social Workers, Other Professions


  1. Utilize clinical strategies to alleviate symptoms of shame in clients.
  2. Integrate Sensorimotor Psychotherapy interventions that teach clients how to regulate their nervous systems and alleviate symptoms of anxiety.
  3. Analyze the efficacy of cognitive interventions to improve treatment outcomes.

Copyright : 03/19/2016

The Neurophysiology of Addiction & Brain Based Relapse Prevention

Program Information

Target Audience

Psychologists, Counselors, Social Workers, Addiction Counselors, Marriage & Family Therapists, Nurses, and other Mental Health Professionals


  • Explain to clients the fundamental brain changes that occur with addiction.
  • Develop a treatment approach that addresses the five fundamental tasks of recovery.
  • Practice a comprehensive systematic relapse prevention plan.
  • Implement the four essential strategies in the relapse prevention plan.
  • Utilize cognitive and experiential techniques to increase the client’s motivation to prevent relapse.
  • Identify clients who are likely to relapse from those that are not likely to relapse.


The Neurophysiology of Addiction

  • The continuum of abuse to dependence
  • Normal neuro-transmission
  • The neurophysiology of dependence
  • Addiction’s influence on co-occurring disorders such as depression and anxiety

The Neurophysiology of Motivation and Desire

  • Addiction’s hijacking of the reward and motivational system
  • The relationship between emotional dysregulation and relapse
  • The relationship between the frontal lobes, motivation and relapse

The Five Tasks of Recovery

  • Core emotional issues such as depression and anxiety that are driving the addiction
  • Strategies for day-to-day emotional regulation
  • Relapse prevention
  • Changing the Motivational System: Life satisfaction and dopamine
  • Structuring ongoing recovery support

Relapse Prevention From a Brain Perspective

  • Dopamine–driven triggers for relapse
  • Cognitive, behavioral, and emotional relapse prevention strategies
  • Motivational coping: the essence of a brain-based relapse prevention plan
  • Practice the feeling of not wanting to relapse

The Elements to Long-Term Relapse Prevention

  • Effectively assess relapse potential
  • Prepare for the dopamine spikes
  • Train the family/support system
  • Identity as a non-user without loss
  • The Life Plan: long-term life satisfaction free of addiction

Copyright : 01/15/2015

The Neurophysiology of Addiction & Brain Based Relapse Prevention Part 2

Copyright : 01/15/2015

A Harm-Reduction Approach to Addictions

Program Information



  • Addiction as a Dilemma
  • Valerie Case Study

Compassionate Pragmatism

  • Compassion
  • Pragmatism

Harm Reduction Principles

  • Curiosity, Respect, Acceptance
  • Small Incremental Change
  • Collaboration
  • Public Health/Medical Harm Reduction

Challenges & Diversity of People with Risky & Addictive Behavior

  • Clinical Challenges
  • Limitations in the U.S.
  • The Tyranny of “Abstinence-Only”
  • Motivational Stages of Change
  • Scientific Revolution/Paradigm Shift

Theoretical Models

  • Multiple Meanings Model
  • Relational Psychoanalysis & Meaning
  • Cyclical Psychodynamics
  • Psychobiosocial Model

Integrative Harm Reduction Psychotherapy

  • Seven Therapeutic Tasks of IHRP


  1. Assess how addictive behavior reflects the interplay of biology, meaning, habit, and social context.
  2. Determine why the harm-reduction stance is essential to effective treatment across the spectrum of addictive severity.
  3. Evaluate seven therapeutic tasks that combine relational psychodynamic, CBT, and mindfulness interventions to address addictive behaviors and the whole person.
  4. Use strategies to address risky behaviors including Urge Surfing, Unwrapping the Urge, Microanalysis, Embracing Ambivalence, Decisional Balance, and the Ideal Use Plan.

Target Audience

  • Psychologists
  • Physicians
  • Addiction Counselors
  • Counselors
  • Social Workers
  • Marriage & Family Therapists
  • Nurses
  • Behavioral Health Professionals

Copyright : 03/22/2019

The iPorn Universe

Program Information


  1. Articulate for clients the differences between porn use and the signs and symptoms of addiction. 
  2. Characterize and address the trends of modern porn addiction that can negatively affect clients, such as interpersonal conflict, inability to become aroused by real sex, dysphoria, an increase in thrill-seeking behaviors, and self-isolation.
  3. Analyze the neurobiological mechanisms of behavioral/process addictions, and integrate salient treatment approaches into your practice, including CBT-Internet Addiction, holistic lifestyle attunements, and elements of Mindfulness-based Stress Reduction.


For the Purposes of Psychoeducation, Articulate for Clients the Differences Between Porn Use and the Signs and Symptoms of Addiction

  • Identify when usage become problematic.
  • Examine how non-problematic usage can be tracked to prevent a slip into addiction.

For Assessment and Treatment Planning, Identify Which Modern Porn Addiction Trends Are Most Affecting Your Clients’ Well-Being

  • Recognize what deficiencies in lifestyle may be contributing to problematic levels of porn usage for your clients.
  • Identify inflamed emotional needs which may be fueling problematic porn for your clients.
  • Discover the common trends of porn addiction, based on Mark Griffiths’ research into the Domains of Behavioral Addictions (Salience, Mood Modification, Tolerance, Withdrawal, Conflict, and Relapse).

Outline the Neurobiological Mechanisms of Behavioral/Process Addictions and Their Treatment Implications

  • Explore how behavioral/process addictions affect the brains reward circuits.
  • Discover how behavioral/process addictions affect brain development.
  • Examine how behavioral/process addictions differ from substance-based addictions.
  • Limitations of current research – case study model and paucity of research base

Utilize Clinical Strategies That Integrate Modern Treatments for Porn Addiction

  • Explore the effectiveness of traditional relational approaches on the underlying causes of behavioral/process addictions.
  • Discover Cognitive Behavioral Therapy-Internet Addiction (CBT-IA) as the first direct treatment for behavioral/process addictions.
  • Review Holistic lifestyle attunement strategies.
  • Integrate Mindfulness-based Stress Reduction (MBSR) into a behavioral/process addiction treatment program.

Target Audience

  • Psychologists
  • Physicians
  • Addiction Counselors
  • Social Workers
  • Marriage & Family Therapists
  • Nurses
  • Other Behavioral Health Professionals

Copyright : 03/22/2019

Addiction Treatment and Couples Therapy: Using Emotionally Focused Therapy to Strengthen Sobriety

Program Information


  1. The Medical Model and Addiction
    1. Key Figures in Modern Treatment
  2. Emotion Focused Therapy
    1. Emotion Focused Therapy for PTSD
    2. Definition of Trauma
    3. The Power of Treating Trauma Within the Context of the Couple Relationship
  3. Neuroplasticity and Change
    1. Importance of Heightened Emotion in Change
    2. How Emotion is More Powerful than Cognition
  4. Adverse Childhood Experiences
    1. Adverse Childhood Experiences and Addiction
    2. Attachment and Trauma is Key to Working with Addiction
    3. Importance of Context in a Person’s Life
  5. Cycle of Trauma Attachment and Addiction
    1. How the Couple System Hijacks Attachment Fluidity
    2. The Relationship between Attachment and Emotion in Systemic Change
    3. How Partner’s Stress Strategies Become the Other Partner’s Negative Trigger
  6. The Process of EFT
    1. Five Basic Moves of EFT
    2. Addressing the Addiction through Attachment Style
    3. Experientially Engage Client with the Underlying Emotion that Addiction Regulates


  • Discover how to use micro-tracking to identify and make explicit the rigid negative attachment-based patterns that perpetuate relational distress in addictive relationships
  • Discover how to systematically engage emotion to create bonding moments that support the addict in reaching out to their partner rather than their substance/behavior of choice
  • Discover how to apply powerful attachment-based interventions as an effective alternative to the familiar modes of confronting denial that often fail and trigger relapse

Target Audience

Psychologists, Physicians, Addiction Counselors, Counselors, Social Workers, Marriage & Family Therapists, Nurses, and other Behavioral Health Professionals

Copyright : 03/24/2017

Grief and Addiction

As a result of the opioid epidemic, the United States saw its largest recorded increase in overdose deaths last year, which is now officially the leading cause of death among adults under 50.

What do we need to do differently for clients grieving for a loved one who overdosed? And how do therapists themselves deal with the loss of an addicted client?

Program Information


  1. Determine why addiction grief is often weighted in self-blame and guilt
  2. Determine how to help loved ones sort through the shame, isolation, and the roles they played in an addiction death
  3. Assess tools for helping clients deal with addiction grief and the “if only’s” that accompany it, such as responsibility clarification and separating out the loved one’s voice from the addiction


The Opioid Epidemic

  • Medicine got it wrong

Substance Related Causes of Death

Death Shapes Grief

  • Types of grief


  • Validate
  • Minimization

Pure Grief versus External Triggers

  • Seligman’s 3 P’s

Understanding Survivors Guilt

Sudden Death versus Suicide

  • Three most common challenges

The 3 C’s of Addiction

Target Audience

  • Psychologists
  • Physicians
  • Addiction Counselors
  • Counselors
  • Social Workers
  • Marriage & Family Therapists
  • Nurses
  • Other Behavioral Health Professionals

Copyright : 03/23/2018

Telehealth Treatment of Addictive Behavior with Janina Fisher, PhD

Program Information


  1. Determine the relationship between the autonomic nervous system and addictive behavior
  2. Appraise the ‘Abstinence/Relapse Cycle’
  3. Implement mindfulness and somatic techniques to help clients regulate their nervous systems
  4. Plan resources that support clients’ recovery from their addictions


The Autonomic Nervous System & Addictive Behavior

Working with the Abstinence/Relapse Cycle

Techniques to Implement to Regulate the Nervous System

  • Mindfulness approaches
  • Somatic approaches

Resources for Addictions Recovery

Target Audience

  • Counselors
  • Social Workers
  • Marriage and Family Therapists
  • Psychiatrists
  • Psychologists
  • Psychotherapists
  • Therapists
  • Addiction Counselors
  • Case Managers
  • Nurses and other Healthcare Professionals

Copyright : 06/01/2020