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Compassion Focused Therapy Workshop

Introduction to Compassion Focused Therapy for Shame and Self-Critical-Difficulties

Mon 25th, Tues 26th and Wed 27th September 2017
The Enterprise Centre, Univeristy of Derby

Workshop Description

This workshop will introduce participants to the basic ideas and interventions used in Compassion Focused Therapy (CFT). CFT was originally developed with people with high shame and self-criticism. These individuals often come from difficult backgrounds where there are low levels of affiliation and affection. This is problematic because from infancy onwards attachment and affiliative experiences play a major role in brain development and regulation of threat-based emotion. Indeed, individuals from these backgrounds can find experiencing positive, affiliative emotions (accepting compassion and being self-compassionate) difficult. This workshop will explore the role of the evolution of mammalian attachment and affiliation in threat regulation with a focus on the complexity of threat processing systems and its regulation through affiliative processing. This workshop will be led by the founder of CFT, Professor Paul Gilbert

What will we learn?

Participants will learn the evolutionary model, the nature of our three basic emotions regulation systems and how to apply it to case formulation. There will also be a to focus on the forms and functions of shame and self-criticism and how to treat them by developing self and other directed compassion. CFT aims to develop care and affiliative-focused motivation, attention, emotion behavior and thinking. Key skills include the use of compassion focused imagery, building the compassionate self and using the sense of a compassionate self to engage with areas of personal difficulty. Conceptual bridges between CFT and contextual behavioral science will be illustrated. The workshop will use a range of PowerPoint presentations, DVD presentations and some limited personal practice.

About Professor Gilbert

Paul Gilbert OBE is Professor of Clinical Psychology at the University of Derby and Head of the Mental Health Research Unit, Derbyshire Mental Health Services NHS Trust. He is a Fellow of the British Psychological Society and has written, taught and researched extensively in the areas of mood disorders and shame. He is a former President of the British Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Psychotherapists. He has published over 150 academic papers and 20 books. He is a series editor for the "Compassion Mind Approaches to various psychological difficulties. He set up the charity The Compassion Mind foundation in 2006 ( and was award an OBE in March 2011.

Learning Objectives

Participants will be able to:

1. Explain how evolutionary concepts can be used to help us understand psychopathology and psychotherapy processes

2. Distinguish different types of positive emotions (e.g. activating versus soothing emotional experiences)

3. Describe the importance of the attachment system and its link to the experience of vulnerability

4. Explain the complexities of threat processing, and our "multiple selves"

5. Distinguish internal shame from external shame, and guilt

6. Discriminate the two psychologies of compassion: engagement and alleviation

7. Work in the affiliative soothing system by utilizing compassion focused imagery and process

8. Utilize compassion focusing in different types of therapy

Who is it for?

Clinical; Beginner; Intermediate

If you have any questions about the conference then please contact Sarah Hurley on 01332 597949.

The full Conference Programme will be available shortly


University of Derby, Enterprise Centre, DE1 3LD


Early-bird Registration fee:

Early bird conference fee £385.00 (bookings before 24th July 2017)

Late/On-site Registration fee:

Normal Rate £455.00

Student Rate - £280.00 (only valid with a student card)


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