Core Consciousness and Treatment Resistant Depression

Complex Integration of Multiple Brain Systems [CIMBS™] NeuroPhysioPsychoTherapy™

Core Consciousness and Treatment Resistant Depression

Day 1- Learning to Work with Multiple Levels of Consciousness
Day 2 – Approaches to Treatment for Resistant Depression

Observing and Utilizing Primary, Secondary and Tertiary emotional processing to guide the therapeutic process 

First day: Learning to work with multiple levels of Consciousness: Affective, Simple, Core and Complex

Why? There are many aspects of consciousness that are extremely important in psychotherapy that often go unnoticed or overlooked.   The activation of multiple levels of consciousness at the same time will help the patient to develop increasingly flexible and complex capacities.  This leads to enhancing neural integration in the patient’s nervous system rather than working primarily with their symptomatology.  

The benefits for this therapeutic process include more precisely attuned and fine tuned treatment with nonconscious emotion patterns.  With this also comes enhanced emotional regulation and long-term learning,   Thus the therapeutic attachment relationship will enable increased collaboration, greater sense of safeness,  better activation and regulation of nonconscious emotional brain systems.  We will carefully and pragmatically explore the most central aspects of Core Consciousness namely: Awareness, Attention, Authority, Autonomy and Agency.

What you will learn: This course will help the participants learn how to activate primary nonconscious emotional brain systems to enable their patients to have access to their own ‘Affective Consciousness’. We will learn how to  work with the inherent capacities for Simple, Core and Complex Consciousness.  

Second day-  Working with treatment  resistant depression; activating Six Separate Endogenous Dopamine networks.

Why?  Neuro-research tells us that the brains of depressed patients have low secretions of endogenous dopamine and opioids.  Hence our patients tend to be less interested in their lives.  Their depressive patterns interfere with their motivation and decision-making as well as the adaptive reward circuitry in the brain.

What you will learn:  We will utilize the learning about levels of consciousness from the first day to focus on the challenges of working with treatment  resistant depression.

This course will help the participants learn how to activate and reinforce 6 Dopamine circuits in the nervous system of their patients  You will learn practical clinical approaches to focus on the challenges of working with treatment resistant depression and thus enhance your effectiveness as psychotherapists.

The perspective of levels of consciousness will give the participants new tools and approaches: 1] the quality of the patient’s attention is critical for their long term learning in therapy

2] Mindful awareness is only a start in working with levels of consciousness.

3]  Actively testing networks of Authority and Autonomy

4]  the Quality of Core Consciousness plays a big role in therapeutic collaboration 

5]  Collaboration and a therapeutic attachment relationship emotional  changes the therapeutic process into a empiric, scientific and discovering process 

Working with Six Different Dopamine Neural Networks

6] Activating and engaging endogenous Neural networks can have an immediate impact on depression within the session.

7] Each Dopamine network has its own processor and generator of emotional energy.

9] Working with Dopamine networks enable the release of ‘feeling good’ neuro transmitters in addition to Dopamine.

There will be clinical demonstrations of working with levels of consciousness by reviewing video-recordings of therapy sessions.  All of the attendees will be able to participate in the careful detection of levels of consciousness and assess their relevance and meaning to the clinical process at that moment in the session.  Then we will discuss how to use that information and evidence to propose interventions and facilitate Neuroplasticity.  There will be therapy exercises with the presenters to demonstrate the p levels of consciousness.  We will have exercises for each of the participants to experience and to practice working with different Dopamine neural Networks.

Learning Objectives

1] How to utilize a level of Consciousness in our assessments of the mental functioning of our patient/clients.

2] How to test the patient’s capacity for their own authority and autonomy.

3] What are two [of six] different Dopamine neural networks that can be very useful in psychotherapy.

Therapeutic Process of CIMBS is called: NeuroPhysioPsychoTherapy.  Neuro– refers to our active interventions to maximize neuroplasticity for long term learning and specific interventions to activate multiple neurotransmitters to facilitate the therapeutic process.  Physio- refers to our observations of psychophysiological phenomena to adjust our therapeutic process and redirect our interventions in response to psychophysiological shifts.  Psycho- refers to our careful attention to 6 different psychological Brain Systems and to our therapeutic process that explicitly meets the psychological needs of the patient. 

Therapeutic Elements: CIMBS incorporates all of the change elements that are a part of the following evidence based therapies:  CBT [desensitization, cognitive restructuring, behavioral change], mindfulness based CBT, affect activation and cognitive restructuring of EDT [Experiential Dynamic Therapy and STDP] therapies [we were co-investigators in prospective evidence based EDT psychotherapy study],  and we use the interruption and rebalancing of EMDR.  In addition we utilize Empirically supported relationship elements since therapy relationships make substantial and consistent contributions to outcome results.

Therapeutic Outcomes:

Our goal is to enable our patients/clients to become the author of their own lives, capable of making the best of any situation, continuously learning and growing to the full extent of the neuroplasticity of their brains and fulfilling their lives.

Workshop Leaders 

Albert Sheldon M.D. is a Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Washington, Seattle and has conducted research and taught psychotherapy for 20 years. He has trained in many psychotherapeutic modalities including CBT, EMDR, hypnosis, group therapy, systems oriented therapy, psychodynamic, and in short-term dynamic psychotherapy. Dr Sheldon received a three year Bush Medical Fellowship to pursue research in psychotherapy.

Beatriz Winstanley Sheldon M.Ed.Psych. Graduated from McGill University, Montreal where she also completed postgraduate specialization in Intensive Short Term Dynamic Psychotherapy. She has had her clinical practice in Seattle and Vancouver, BC for 25 years. Ms Winstanley has trained and supervised clinical counselors, psychologists and psychiatrists for the past 10 years.

Dr Sheldon and Ms. Winstanley were both clinical investigators in a recently published multi-centered evidence based research study of Short-Term Dynamic Psychotherapy. Now they have joined together to pioneer a different therapeutic paradigm.