Schema Therapy for Eating Disorders- 2 days


6 & 7 August 2019

Dr Robert Brockman, Schema Therapy Supervisor and Trainer, Clinical Psychologist & Claudia Mendez, Clinical Psychologist, Schema Therapy Supervisor

Venue-  Dixon Room, State Library of New South Wales, Macquarie Street Sydney

Cost - Early bird rate (if booked/paid by 1 June 2019) $475, then $500.

Workshop Description

Schema therapy is a transdiagnostic treatment model that is ideally suited to working with eating disorder symptoms alongside rigidly held belief systems, characterological traits, affective instability, and other comorbidities. The Schema Therapy model has robust evidence in the treatment of a range of longstanding and deep-seated psychological problems, with preliminary evidence indicating promising results in the treatment of eating disorders. 

This is a two-day interactive workshop which will cover fundamental concepts and techniques of schema theory and therapy (ST) including the assessment of schemas and modes specific to eating disorders, as well as core experiential, interpersonal, cognitive and behavioural change techniques. Participants will be shown how to conceptualise eating disorders in the context of wider comorbidities, and to utilize powerful techniques to challenge self-criticism and eating symptoms. Participants will learn ways they can help clients to build a healthy compassionate self to replace the ‘survival’ modes that drive eating disordered behaviours.

The workshop will provide participants with practical experience and guidance in the use of imagery, chair work and other techniques for change. Videos and live demonstrations will be used to illustrate experiential change techniques. Participants will receive handouts that they can use in their clinical work.

Learning objectives and outcomes

  • 1.     Learn the basic principles and techniques of schema therapy and how to apply these with complex ED presentations using a schema mode conceptualisation.

  • 2.     Opportunity to practice all core ST techniques as applied to both anorexia nervosa and complex bulimia including: imagery rescripting, chair work, empathic confrontation and using the therapy relationship as a template for change (limited re-parenting). Video clips live role play demonstrations, and direct coaching with participants will facilitate learning of techniques.

  • 3.     Procedural learning will be facilitated via eating disorders case discussions based on the application of the schema therapy model across eating disorder diagnostic groups and in the context of a range of comorbidities and complexities.

  • Content

  • The workshop will offer you methods to cope with these challenging situations and will include:

  • • Methods to formulate complex eating disorder thoughts, behaviours, urges, & comorbid disorders using schema ‘modes’

  • • Methods in using imagery & chair-work to set limits on self-defeating ’inner critic’ modes

  • • Ways to use imagery & chair-work to bypass strong coping modes, especially the ‘Overcontroller’ and ’Detached Self-Soother’ modes

  • • Ways of working with those who are reluctant to participate in experiential work & to connect with emotions.

  • • Different methods to work with vulnerability & distress in eating disorders.

  • • Ways to use imagery & chair work to enhance client’s Healthy Adult mode in treatment.

About the Presenters

Dr Robert Brockman:

Robert is a clinical psychologist and researcher living and working out of sunny Sydney. From 2010-2017 Robert’s work life consisted of supervising and lecturing on Clinical Psychology Masters programs (Western Sydney University; University of Technology) and running a small private practice. This practice has evolved into Schema Therapy Sydney the first schema therapy focused private practice to be established in Sydney. Rob has been affiliated with Schema Therapy Training Australia for the past 5 years and now regularly provides accredited schema trainings across Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, and Hong Kong.

Just this year Rob co-authored a new schema therapy book Contextual Schema Therapy along with Eckhard Roediger and Bruce Stevens (published by New Harbinger in June 2018). His central contribution to this work has been on integrating 3rd wave techniques (e.g. Mindfulness, Self-compassion, Values) to explicitly build the healthy adult mode in schema therapy.

In 2016 in Vienna, Rob was honoured by ISST colleagues with the ‘Young Investigator’ award for his research on the application of schema therapy to GAD and pathological worry processes. Rob currently holds a senior research fellowship with Australian Catholic University where he currently engaged in clinical research focusing on extending the schema model into novel populations (e.g. GAD, Eating Disorders, HIV Sufferers, Problem Gamblers, Forensic Patients, and Psychosis), Schema Therapy Self-Reflection/Self-Practice (with Joan and Ida), and the cross-cultural application of schema therapy (with Malaysian and Singaporean colleagues). From 2015-current Rob has been consultant supervisor on a multi-site open trial of group schema therapy for eating disorders (with Susan Simpson & Evelyn Smith).

Claudia Mendez:

Claudia is a senior clinical psychologist with experience working in both the government and private settings. Claudia has worked in public mental health settings across the Hunter New England and South West Sydney Local Health Districts providing supervision and psychological interventions for complex mental health presentations. Claudia currently works for the Liverpool and Fairfield Mental Health Service working with adults who experience complex mental health, trauma, dissociative, and personality disorders and in the provision of supervision to clinicians. Claudia has also been working as lead clinician in the Sydney arm of a multi-site trial of Group Schema Therapy for Eating Disorders (Western Sydney University).