Full Course Description

Complex PTSD Clinical Workshop: A Comprehensive Approach to Accurately Assess and Effectively Treat Clients with Chronic, Repeated and/or Developmental Trauma

Many clinicians are trained in the treatment of single traumatic events, but are not fully equipment to treat Complex PTSD. The traditional approaches to the treatment of PTSD can fall short when working with clients with Complex PTSD. Watch this recording to learn how you can adapt your therapeutic approach to help clients diagnosed with Complex PTSD achieve more successful outcomes.

The most common question asked when treating Complex PTSD is, “where do I start?”. In this training, you will develop confidence in your ability to successfully organize and prioritize your client’s treatment goals. You will learn how to compassionately and effectively work with clients who have experienced multiple traumatic events and prolonged trauma exposure.

Successful treatment requires a compassionate therapeutic relationship and effective, research-based interventions. After this two-day workshop you will learn how to:

  • Help clients move out of crisis by building stabilizing resources
  • Prepare clients to work through traumatic memories without becoming Overwhelmed
  • Develop an integrative trauma treatment plan that includes CBT, DBT, EMDR Therapy, Somatic Psychology, Parts Work Therapy, and Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM).

In this recording, Dr. Arielle Schwartz will show you an engaging and interactive way to learn valuable strategies that will allow you to successfully address the dysregulated affect and arousal states that accompany Complex PTSD. You will leave this seminar with practical tools that facilitate a strength-based approach to trauma recovery and increased resilience in clients.

Program Information


Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder vs. Complex PTSD: Understand the Difference

  • Acute traumatic stress, PTSD, Complex PTSD
  • Diagnostic clarification and differential diagnosis
  • Key contributing factors of Complex PTSD
  • The common symptoms of Complex PTSD
The Neurobiology of PTSD: Beyond Fight and Flight
  • Polyvagal Theory
  • 6 Stages of trauma response
  • Heart Rate Variability and the Social Nervous System
  • Interpersonal Neurobiology
  • Psychobiological regulation
  • Rupture and repair
  • Implications of childhood neglect or abuse
  • Neuroplasticity and Complex PTSD
Psychological and Physiological Repercussions of Complex PTSD: A Deeper Understanding for Accurate Assessment
  • Intrusive symptoms and anxiety
  • Emotional dysregulation: Outbursts of anger and debilitating shame
  • Avoidance symptoms and phobic reactions to traumatic material
  • Interpersonal problems and difficulty being close to others
  • Dissociation and dysregulation
  • Cognitive distortions and compromised meaning making
  • Physical health problems, ACE factors and painful somatization
  • Preverbal and nonverbal memories
  • Disturbing somatic sensations
  • Depressive symptoms
  • Learned helplessness and shame
Therapeutic Interventions for Complex PTSD: Summary of Effective Therapies
  • Psychodynamic and Relational Therapy
  • Psychobiological perspectives: Polyvagal Theory
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
  • Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT)
  • EMDR Therapy
  • Somatic Psychology
  • Parts Work Therapy: Work with Ego States
  • Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM): mindfulness, yoga, and integrative healthcare
Integrative Treatment for Complex PTSD: Putting it All Together for an Effective Treatment Plan
  • A biopsychosocial approach: Partner with clients to build a health care team
  • Goal of treatment: Memory retrieval vs. trauma recovery
  • History taking: Identify chronic, repeated, and/or developmental trauma events
  • Cultural factors and Complex PTSD
  • Recognize attachment Injuries
  • How to work with transgenerational trauma
  • Identify parts, ego states and defenses
  • Assess for dissociation
  • Mutual regulation and relational repair in therapy
  • Prepare for trauma processing: Develop resources and stability
  • Work through traumatic memories: EMDR and Somatic Psychology
  • Grief work in Complex PTSD
  • Integrate and Instill positive change
Experiential Interventions: Mind-Body Practices for Clients with Complex PTSD
  • Conscious breathing for self-regulation
  • Grounding and sensory awareness
  • Containment: Reclaim choice and control
  • Build imaginal allies
  • Cultivate mindfulness, acceptance, and self-compassion
  • Somatic interventions: Titration, sequencing, and somatic re-patterning
  • Bilateral stimulation and dual attention in EMDR Therapy
  • Potential risks and limitations of mind-body therapies
Fostering Resilience: For Post-Traumatic Growth and Healing
  • Learn the 6 Pillars of Resilience
  • Trauma recovery and the bell curve
  • Resilience as a process and an outcome
  • Help clients move from learned helplessness to learned optimism
  • Post-Traumatic Growth: Help clients reach their potential
Vicarious Trauma: Improve Client Outcomes Through Effective Self-Care
  • Identify resources that improve your clinical skills
  • In-session self-care to improve focus on the client and therapeutic process
  • Burnout prevention techniques

Please Note: PESI is not affiliated or associated with Marsha M. Linehan, PhD, ABPP, or her organizations.


  1. Distinguish key contributing factors to the development of Complex PTSD as it relates to client case conceptualization.
  2. Investigate how Complex PTSD impacts the cognitive, emotional, and physical health of the client.
  3. Determine how to assess clients for Complex PTSD symptoms within other diagnoses, including personality disorders, mood disorders, anxiety disorders, and dissociative disorders.
  4. Incorporate into clinical treatment practical mind-body therapy tools to help clients feel resourced and prepared for trauma processing.
  5. Articulate the six stages of trauma responses within the neurobiology of Complex PTSD as it relates to clinical treatment.
  6. Utilize assessment tools to properly assess for Complex PTSD to better inform treatment planning.
  7. Breakdown how mutual regulation within the therapeutic relationship teaches clients self-regulation strategies that help them develop new interpersonal strengths that help with the treatment process.
  8. Integrate interventions for the treatment of Complex PTSD drawn from CBT, DBT, EMDR Therapy, Parts Work Therapy, Somatic Psychology, and mind-body therapies.
  9. Analyze how working within the “Window of Tolerance” can help reduce the likelihood of re-traumatization.
  10. Assess how “top-down” and “bottom-up” interventions can speed up or slow down the pacing of trauma treatment.
  11. Employ the 6 Pillars of Resilience as a strength-based approach that fosters growth and integration of a positive sense of self-identity in clients.
  12. Determine resilience and protective factors to aid against the development of PTSD.

Target Audience

  • Counselors
  • Social Workers
  • Psychologists
  • Case Managers
  • Addiction Counselors
  • Therapists
  • Marriage & Family Therapists
  • Other Mental Health Professionals
  • Nurses

Copyright : 10/23/2018

Foundations of Somatic Therapy: The 9 Key Techniques for Effective Body-Based Therapy

Trauma is stored in the body, often beyond the reach of talk therapy.

While the thought of by-passing “talk therapy” can seem extreme to some therapists, the fact is somatic techniques have been proven to get results treating PTSD, depression, addiction, chronic pain, anxiety, dissociation, intense emotions and more.

Groundbreaking somatic therapy interventions do more than just impact the mind’s interpretation of trauma, they target and heal implicit trauma memories and release clients from decades of suffering

…sometimes in as little as one session!

Here’s your chance to get a front-row seat to witness step-by-step somatic healing.

Program Information


  1. Differentiate somatic psychology from cognitive-based therapy approaches.
  2. Analyze perspectives and different schools of thought on somatic therapy approaches to develop a robust understanding of body-based treatments.
  3. Develop and understanding of polyvagal theory and therapy interventions to integrate into somatic approaches.
  4. Determine how to gather embodied goals that can be achieved during a session.
  5. Develop skills (grounding, centering, posture, container, expansion, etc.) to help regulate the autonomic nervous system.
  6. Formulate questions and reasons that invite conscious awareness of bodily sensation.
  7. Utilize different forms of attention to access interception.
  8. Identify signs of down-regulation and up-regulation in the nervous system, as well as other states of arousal.
  9. Articulate the difference between implicit and explicit timelines and the therapeutic impact.


Somatic Psychology: Bringing the Body into Therapy

  • Introduction to Somatic Psychology
  • The new science of interoception
  • How therapeutic change happens in the NOW
  • Let your client be their own expert
  • What is a “bottom up” approach?
  • Create kinesthetic awareness
  • Identify choice points for working with the nervous system
  • What to do when your clients can’t “think their way out”
  • Create harmony between parts of self
  • How to use metaphor to help clients regulate
Introception & The Insula: Mapping the Body & Nervous System in Therapy
  • Mapping the internal body and the story of the nervous system
  • What is the Insular Cortex and how can you engage it for healing trauma
  • How does information reach conscious awareness?
  • Countering the negativity bias in the brain
  • Breaking the loop of chronic stress
  • Explore the seat where the complex emotion and self-insight arises 
What Helps Clients Regulate
9 Strategies for nervous system regulation
  1. Grounding
  2. Multiple Examples of Orienting 
  3. Centering
  4. Posture
  5. Containment and the Body as a Container for affect and life experiences 
  6. Expansion
  7. Self Contact and the use of Character Structures and Developmental Repair Messages
  8. Mirroring
  9. Gentle Movement
Educate your Clients about the Autonomic Nervous System and how it Influences their Experiences
  • Introduction to the Window of Tolerance and Range of Resiliency Model
  • Create clear goals for somatic work using the Window of Tolerance Model
  • Observe Exercises that teach clear biological markers and interoceptive experiences of the Sympathetic, transitional states, and parasympathetic nervous system
  • Learn how to support and observe down regulation in your client’s body
  • Introduction to Implicit and Explicit Memory Research
  • Work with implicit and explicit timelines
  • Re-integrate clients to a sense of present time

Target Audience

  • Counselors
  • Social Workers
  • Psychiatrists
  • Psychologists
  • Case Managers
  • Addiction Counselors
  • Therapists
  • Marriage & Family Therapists
  • Psych Nurses
  • Other Mental Health Professionals

Copyright : 03/29/2023

Somatic Therapy to Tame the Survival Response and Heal Implicit Trauma Memories

This course is intended to teach therapists somatic therapy techniques for working with the survival response through in-session demonstrations.

Program Information


  1. Integrate the use of imagery and felt sense of safety/feeling into clinical work. 
  2. Practice somatic exercises for the fight, flight, freeze response.  
  3. Integrate polyvagal theory into clinical observation and understanding of client’s body and trauma history. 
  4. Utilize different forms of attention to access interception. 
  5. Assess which part of the nervous system is active in a client. 
  6. Develop exercises the increase a client’s window of tolerance. 
  7. Formulate questions and reasons that invite conscious awareness of bodily sensation.


The importance of working with survival physiology

  • Neuroanatomy of a threat response and a thwarted threat response
  • How survival responses impact attachment
  • Harness the opportunity for change in “transitional states”
  • Learn how to support and observe up regulation in your client’s body
Apply Polyvagal Theory to track the nervous system
  • Learn the difference between how to support your clients moving through transitional states of survival physiology vs Biological Completion of Procedural Movements
  • Observe the difference between Voluntary vs Involuntary Movement
  • How predatory movement, building impulse and Agency helps clients heal
  • Learn how to engage how tension patterns can move the body toward self-protection and new learning that reconsolidates implicit memories of helplessness 
  • Observe and learn step by step Interventions to work with the Sympathetic Nervous System and Active Defensive Responses
Learn about the fight response and healthy aggression 
  • Skills to work with Animal Imagery to support a client’s connection to their own ability to Protect, Respond, and connect to Instinctual Power
  • Learn Push Hands Exercises
  • How the completion of Survival Responses relates your Client’s attachment style
  • How to support Speaking up
  • Exercises for boundary work with client
  • Skills to work with freeze physiology
  • Identify primary, secondary, and tertiary dissociation

Target Audience

  • Counselors
  • Social Workers
  • Psychiatrists
  • Psychologists
  • Case Managers
  • Addiction Counselors
  • Therapists
  • Marriage & Family Therapists
  • Psych Nurses
  • Other Mental Health Professionals

Copyright : 03/31/2023

Somatic Therapy to Create Healthy Attachment: Strategies to Heal Development and Relational Trauma

This training in intended to teach therapists how to repair developmental attachment wounds and other relational trauma through somatic therapy techniques – taught via in-session demonstrations. 

Program Information


  1. Formulate developmental statements that can assist in repairing attachment styles. 
  2. Practice somatic exercises that target developmental attachment trauma.
  3. Identify strategies of how to use the relational field through social engagement and ventral vagal intervention. 
  4. Formulate I-statements that help clients put words to bodily sensations, implicit memories, and other biological processes.
  5. Analyze how image repair with implicit memory of self as infants or children can help with attachment repair and ANS regulation. 
  6. Formulate strategies to increase the parasympathetic rest and digest response through relational support.
  7. Identify ways to work with attachment and transgenerational patterns in the body and autonomous nervous system.


Strategies for Attachment and Relationship Repair

  • Definition of Soma
  • Focusing on Repair and not Pathology
  • Learn about how to support the Emotional Motor System and Physiology to change the intra-personal experience and after the inter-personal dynamics
  • Introduction to development and Interpersonal Neurobiology
  • Attachment from a biological perspective
  • Rupture and Repair Cycles and the formation of the Self and Relationships
  • Using developmental repatterining through structure 
  • Creating new implicit memories to change developmental trauma imprints

Learn a Developmental Exercise using body-based skills (string shape exercise)

  • Part 1:  Doing a developmental pattern differently from the inside out
  • Part 2:  I statements vs it statements 
  • Part 3:  Developmental statements with relationship repair
  • Part 4:  Differentiation from transgenerational trauma, working with survival physiology and emodied emotion

Enhancing your Client’s connection to Embodying Essential Qualities

  • Formulate questions to help client’s embody a sense of purpose
  • Explore Interocpetive experiences of essential self
  • Identify somatic archetypes
  • Explore how your client’s can use the hero’s journey to support healing in the body
  • Learn an Embodied archetype exercise

Increase your Clients sense of Capacity through supporting experience of a wide range of embodied emotion

  • Review of Research: “Facilitating adaptive emotion processing and somatic reprailisa via sustained interoception attention” (Price and Weng, 2021)
  • Interception and emotion
  • Learn how your clients will benefit by embodying emotion through organizing kindled survival physiology
  • Learn how to allow new attachment adaptation through relationship repair
  • Increase your clients ability to embody a wide range of emotion
  • Work with near death experiences and existential terror

Ventral Strategies 

  • Using imagery, interoception, and movement for repair with implicit non-verbal memories from infancy and early life
  • Attachment repair exercises between therapist and client
  • Exercises to work with developmental disorganization
  • Using resonance in therapy?

Closing a session 

  • The depth of transformation

Target Audience

  • Counselors
  • Social Workers
  • Psychiatrists
  • Psychologists
  • Case Managers
  • Addiction Counselors
  • Therapists
  • Marriage & Family Therapists
  • Psych Nurses
  • Other Mental Health Professionals

Copyright : 04/04/2023

Finding a Faster Way to Treat Trauma: A Neurobiologically Informed Approach

Increasingly, therapists are under pressure to provide short-term treatment for long-term issues. But how can we possibly treat trauma briefly? After all, many trauma treatments focus on helping the client remember and articulate what happened to them. It’s also especially difficult to provide short-term care for clients who exhibit suicidal or self-destructive behaviors, or for dysregulated clients who often find quick methods difficult to tolerate. So, what’s a trauma therapist to do? The answer lies in new, neurobiologically-informed treatments. Rather than treating traumatic events, neuroscience teaches us to treat their effects. In this recording, you’ll discover how to:

  • Pace the treatment to fit the demands of managed care
  • Capitalize on the body’s innate capacity to heal
  • Focus on traumatic effects rather than events
  • Apply a safe, neurobiologically informed brief therapy model that offers hope to trauma survivors

Program Information


  1. Evaluate the theory of trauma-related autonomic dysregulation.
  2. Construct a “phase-oriented” treatment of trauma and create treatment tasks for each phase.
  3. Utilize mindfulness-based treatment techniques with traumatized clients.
  4. Practice three (3) somatic and cognitive interventions that directly address the neurobiological effects of trauma.


  • Understanding the neurobiological ‘living legacy’ of trauma
    • Implicit versus explicit memory
    • Survival-related defensive responses
    • Autonomic dysregulation
  • Implications for brief therapy
    • Phase-oriented treatment
    • Pacing the tasks of treatment for a time-limited model
  • Tasks of the three phases of treatment
  • Approaches and interventions appropriate for a short-term model

Target Audience

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

Copyright : 03/12/2022

Embodying Emotions

Based on the work of leading trauma experts, we know that difficult emotions, trauma and suffering are stored in the body…

What hasn’t been so clear is how to release the pain that’s deeply entrenched in our clients’ body, mind and spirit. 

Regardless of which therapy approaches you’re using, you need to be able to help your clients tolerate overwhelming and uncomfortable emotions come up…

…so you can help them with a wide range of clinical problems and diagnoses, including PTSD, complex trauma, substance abuse, attachment wounds and more.

Join Dr. Raja Selvam to learn critical somatic therapy skills every clinician should know to help their clients process trauma and more.

Drawing from research in neuroscience, cognitive psychology, and body psychotherapy, Dr. Selvam shares with you a step-by-step framework so you can:

•    Help your clients stay curious in the face of overwhelming emotions
•    Build tolerance for tough emotions so you can do deep trauma and emotional processing
•    Improve your own capacity for emotional attunement with clients
•    Enhance mindfulness and spiritual practices by embodying emotions

…All while shortening treatment times with any other modalities you’re already using! 

Register now and learn how to help your clients master their emotions and take back control of their lives!

Program Information


  1. Describe the approach of embodying emotions and list its eight diverse clinical benefits.
  2. Investigate the evidence base of embodying emotions.
  3. Implement the four steps of embodying emotions in clinical practice to meet diverse clinical goals.
  4. Implement the practice of embodying emotions in a simple seven-step protocol, of particular value in working with clients with complex traumas and psychophysiological (psychosomatic) symptoms.
  5. Identify the three important determinants of affect tolerance in clients.
  6. List the three categories of emotions with examples from each category.
  7. Implement the three strategies for working with the face-and-throat physiology in the practice of embodying emotions.
  8. Implement somatic strategies for working with existential themes (existential terror, fragmentation, rage, and shame) often encountered in working with severe traumatic experiences.


The Practice of Embodying Emotions

  • How it can help you in therapy now
  • The science behind improved outcomes
  • New research, clinical examples, and therapy implications
  • How to work with complex trauma and psychosomatic symptoms

The Four Steps of the Practice of Embodying Emotions

  • Get to know the uniqueness of emotion-focused work
  • Detailed guidance for what to do in each step
  • Innovate strategies to help clients regulate
  • Specific methods to integrate somatic work into other modalities
  • How to customize therapy for each clients, therapy situations & other complexities
  • Video Demonstration: Working with anxiety around taping an educational video for posting online

The Physiology of Emotions

  • Understand the somatic relationship between body and emotion
  • Compare and contrast theories on the physiology of emotions
  • The Social Engagement System from Porges’ Polyvagal Theory
  • The specialized role of the face and throat in emotion
  • Video Demonstration: The practice of embodying emotions with recurring anxiety in the workplace, a focus on the face and throat physiology

The Seven-Step Protocol for Embodying Emotions

  • Step-by-step instructions for each of the 7 phases
  • What to do when clients have low affect tolerance 
  • How to work with highly dysregulated clients
  • Video Demonstration: How to implement the 7-step protocol  

Inter-Personal Resonance and Embodied Emotional Attunement

  • What is embodied emotional attunement?
  • Why embodied emotional attunement is important
  • What is interpersonal resonance & how to use it in therapy
  • The scientific basis of inter-personal resonance
  • How to manage counter-transference with inter-personal resonance
  • Four steps to incorporating inter-personal resonance in clinical settings

Working with Shame with Different Types of Emotions 

  • Different types of emotions 
  • Sensorimotor emotions
  • Working with existential shame with different types of emotions
  • Video Demonstration: Working with existential shame

Target Audience

  • Counselors
  • Social Workers
  • Psychiatrists
  • Psychologists
  • Case Managers
  • Addiction Counselors
  • Therapists
  • Marriage & Family Therapists
  • Psych Nurses
  • Other Mental Health Professionals

Copyright : 04/26/2023

Module 2: Embodying Emotions

Copyright : 04/26/2023

Module 3: Embodying Emotions

Copyright : 04/26/2023

Module 4: Embodying Emotions

Copyright : 04/26/2023

Module 5: Embodying Emotions

Copyright : 04/26/2023

Module 6: Embodying Emotions

Copyright : 04/26/2023