Workshops – SLOT II

Friday, 8th of September 17:00 – 18:30

Roi Maliach, Father and husband, a relational body psychotherapist, supervisor and tutor, head of the Holistic Body Psychotherapy at Karkur college, Israel. M.A. in body psychotherapy, Anglia Ruskin University, England. M.A. dance and movement therapy, Haifa University, Israel. Seeks to connect and bridge the body-mind and between Body psychotherapy and classical psychoanalysis, for a broad and deep understanding of the human and therapeutic encounter.

The whole world is a very narrow bridge/ The therapist identity from a relational perspective

Hall 40 Main Building

In the workshop, I want to offer an exploration of our construction circle movement, the one that we can declare on and the one that we are unconsciously, in the therapeutic encounter. The exploration will include, additional to verbally exploration, a bodily exploration, by felt sense, posture and movement, that might reveal additional knowing about our personal therapist identity.

Our identity, as humans, is being created in relation and through our interaction with the significant others. Our therapist identity is constructed from a mixture of our personality, our training, our practice and the time and culture we live in. This identity is being challenged over and over, through the therapeutic relationship as part of being in relation but more than that ,in the patient’s effort to reclaim unlived life (Ogden, 2016) with and through us. The process of constructing the therapist identity happened in a circle movement from being constructed to deconstructed ,to reconstructed, again and again, togetherness and reciprocity. In this workshop, we will explore, verbally and bodily, our constructed therapist identity, through this circle, to the patient’s therapeutic benefits. * This workshop is intended mainly to therapist and psychotherapist.

Nicky Smout 1997 Biodynamic (psycho)therapist 2005 Trainer and co-director at the Netherlands Institute for Biodynamic Psychology. 2000 Transpersonal psychology; I am trained in transpersonal psychology by Atum O’Kane, who draws from Jungian transpersonal psychology, Sufism and other spiritual traditions. 2006 continuous development I am inspired by and integrate the work of Merete Holm Brantbjerk and System Centered Training.

Moments of Awe, moving beyond identity

Hall 41A Main Building

In this workshop I want to address and explore the interplay between Identity and Spirituality. As a human being, having a body with contours, being finite we can have experiences of the infinite. How do we integrate that experience and how does that impact our identity.

Just a short moment of awe can lift us up and lift us out of worries, restrictions of the ego and identifications. Awe moments are spontaneously opening us up, enlarging us. In its expansiveness we spontaneously move from self-interest to social collective, from self-isolation to integrated self. Awe is an feeling of being in the presence of something vast that transcends your current understanding of the world. (definition of D. Keltner). This innate human ability to experience awe can enrich our perspective on life and others. It has an impact on our vagal tone and on our wellbeing. Awe is not something that we can make happen. What we can do is deliberately look for it, be aware and open to it. In the context of the theme of Identity you could say that Awe can deconstruct and reconstruct Identity. In a moment of awe all identifications are dissolved, making room for other part of us, our wholeness. In this workshop – We will explore Awe on a personal level, through movement, breath and sensation. – By reflection on where we find awe and how we feel awe in our body. – We will explore Awe in the context of this conference, its interplay with Identity. – We will explore Awe on a professional level. How in therapy awe can re-engage one with his/her/their depth and life. In this workshop I draw upon Biodynamic principle of Primary Personality, the scientific findings of D. Keltner and the work of Judith Blackstone.

Dr. Raja Selvam, PhD is a licensed clinical psychologist from California, a senior trainer in Peter Levine’s Somatic Experiencing (SE) professional trauma training, and the developer of Integral Somatic Psychology (ISP) with the practice of embodying emotions as its core clinical strategy. He is the author of the book The practice of embodying emotions: A guide for improving cognitive, emotional, and clinical outcomes. Dr. Selvam has taught in twenty four countries on five continents.

Embodying emotions: A method for improving cognitive, emotional, and behavioral outcomes in all therapy modalities from Integral Somatic Psychology (ISP)

Hall 191 Main Building

The practice of embodying emotions is a state-of-the-art, science-backed, and body-based approach for improving physical, energetic, cognitive, emotional, behavioral, relational, and even spiritual outcomes and shortening treatment times in all therapy modalities including existing body psychotherapy approaches. Recent scientific advances in multiple disciplines have established that emotion determines cognition and behavior in every moment; cognition, emotion, and behavior are dependent not only on the brain but also on the body and the environment; physiological and energetic defenses employed to cope with or repress difficult emotional experiences, by disconnecting the brain from the body and the body from the environment, can compromise cognition, emotion, and behavior in all clinical settings; when more of the body is involved in emotional experience, the better the brain’s ability to process it cognitively, emotionally and behaviorally. Taking the cue from the above findings, when we broaden the definition of emotion to include sensorimotor emotions to find emotion in clients from the very first session, and expand the conscious experience of emotion to as much of the brain and body physiology as possible by working with physiological and energetic defenses against them with simple tools such as self-touch that can be employed even in online sessions, we make the body more available and more connected to the brain and the environment, ensuring optimal conditions for improving diverse outcomes and shortening treatment times in all modalities.

The structure of the workshop:

  1. Presentation of the science and the practice of embodying emotions from Integral Somatic Psychology (ISP)
  2. Presentation of the four steps of embodying emotions
  3. Presentation of clinical examples with high and low levels of emotional intensity
  4. Presentation of one or more videos of treatments
  5. Guided self-experience of embodying emotions for workshop participants
  6. Q & A

Anat Ben-Israel M.A. is a Biodynamic Psychotherapist, trainer, supervisor, and group facilitator with over 35 years of experience in the field. She works internationally, mainly in the USA, Israel, Europe and England. She is the founder of The Israeli Center for Biodynamic Body Psychotherapy. Ms. Ben-Israel is a faculty member and a senior trainer at the London School for Biodynamic Psychotherapy (LSBP). She is a member of the EABP and the British Association of Psychotherapists (UKCP).

Workshop Transformation and Synergy – The way of the Heart

Hall 242 Main Building

An experiential Biodynamic Body Psychotherapy workshop for therapists and students from different therapeutic modalities who are interested in exploring working with the Embodied Wisdom of Heart as part of the client’s life affirming therapeutic process, especially in times of uncertainty in a changing world. In this experiential workshop one will learn a range of techniques connecting one to the life sustaining qualities of the Heart, from the self to the trans-personal level. In the workshop will explore how working with the Heart Center reduce anxiety and fear of the unknown and offers emotional support and grounding. We will explore how it can offer a safe inner space, to ponder and investigate existential questions which clients bring and can be challenged by. Structure – There will be a short presentation of the subject and its relevancy to the conference, one own self and how it is applicable to working with clients/patients, couples or groups. Ways of working – We will be working in pairs, individually and in small groups using techniques mainly from Biodynamic Body Psychotherapy (the Gerda Boyesen Method). We will explore the topic by using awareness, embodied guided imagery, movement, psychotherapeutic biodynamic touch, breath, energy work and emotional dynamic processes.

Sladjana Djordjevic MA in clinical psychology, Accredited Body Psychotherapist, Chair of Serbian Association for Body Psychotherapy and a member of EABP Council. Holder of the National and European Certificate for Psychotherapy. She is actively involved in the work of European Association for Body Psychotherapy since 2013. Founder of “Body psychotherapy Centre” in Belgrade where she leads CPD workshops for psychotherapists: “Embodiment in psychotherapy” and “Trauma-path of recovery”.

Deconstructing vision patterns through the lenses of Polyvagal theory

Hall 277 Main Building

In this workshop we will explore how our eyesight patterns are being constructed via autonomic nervous system. Furthermore, we will deconstruct and reconstruct the concept of eyesight and vision in general, which is an important part of a person’s identity.

The Polyvagal theory proposes a theoretical framework for understanding of how autonomic nervous system creates adaptive strategies. Furthermore, it proposes description on how these physiological states limit the range of behavioral and psychological experience. In this workshop we will explore how the physiological states of fight/flight/freeze reflects in behavioral and emotional patterns of eyesight. Within the workshop, participants will be shortly introduced to theoretical framework, which will be followed by experiential eye exercises intended for exploring eyesight patterns and building more resilient, ventral vagal state vision patterns.

Morit Heitzler is an experienced therapist, supervisor and trainer with a private practice in Israel. She has been teaching on various training courses in the UK, Israel and in Europe, and regularly leads workshops and groups. Over three decades, she has been developing a relational- integrative approach to trauma work, incorporating Body Psychotherapy, attachment theory, EMDR, modern neuroscience and Family Constellations. The issue of change and transformation is central to her work.

Through the eye of the needle: Transformation, Change and Body-Mind Processes

Hall 15 Faculty of Journalism

The world we live in has changed dramatically in a very short time. Within the collective, global shifting-sands of our time, each one of us experiences, sometimes on a daily basis, individual transitions and transformation. From the cellular level of the flesh to the infinite realms of the spirit, our sense of Self is ever changing and transforming. This on-going movement of expansion and contraction, of reaching out and drawing back, encapsulates the healthy pulse of life and tends to freeze only due to danger and trauma. As Body Psychotherapists we are familiar with the physical and emotional armour our Body-Mind systems have created in order to block spontaneous expression, thus inhabiting the on-going flow of life and energy. Usually, there were good reasons for these protective strategies to appear and manifest, and we hear those reasons echoing in our client’s stories as well as in our own. This, however, creates the ongoing conflict between the human bias towards the familiar and known, that which provides us with the illusion of safety and control on the one hand, and the innate impulse towards healing and transformation, towards growth and expression on the other. In this workshop I will invite us to explore the vibrating tension between these two polarities, the push-and-pull struggle between staying stuck versus craving a transformative movement. I suggest that this is not a conceptual debate only, but a primal engagement of titanic forces that vibrates through all levels and layers of our being, a full body-mind experience. In this workshop we will explore this dilemma through theoretical and experiential body-mind interactions.

Christina Bogdanova BA in Journalism and Mass Communications • MA in Psychology and Psychopathology of Development • Neo-Reichian analytical body psychotherapist • Somatic Experiencing Practitioner • Ongoing professional trainings in Somatic Trauma Therapy, NeuroAffective Touch, and others • Private individual and group practice in Sofia • Certified trainer and supervisor at the Institute for Neo-Reichian analytical body psychotherapy, Sofia • Member of the BNPS and EABP • Deputy Editor of IBPJ.

Transforming the Self from Victimization to Authenticity

Hall 17 Faculty of Journalism

Trauma hurts and victimises people in many ways, depriving them of well-being and life in fulfilment, satisfaction, and connection to themselves and others. And if disconnected, people feel alone, threatened, frightened, not belonging, and unsafe. They start having lives in constriction, limited horizons, isolation and deepening frustration without even realising it. They forget (or never knew) that there is a healthy part in themselves, alive and longing to be noticed and included in their lives. This experiential workshop invites the participants to meet one of their traumatised parts (feeling helpless, hopeless, needing and not receiving help and support). They will be supported by a partner who will mirror their traumatised part, following their instructions of behaviours, gestures, and words. By witnessing their traumatised part’s inner turmoil, the participants will have the opportunity to undertake the necessary corrective behaviour they need. By stepping into the shoes of observers, they got the chance to sense and feel the suppressed need and the movement that was stopped/blocked and to follow them, turning them into effective behaviours that allow closure or at least the beginning of the process of closure. The workshop will start with an introductory practice allowing anchoring the participants in the here and now, orienting, grounding and centring them, thus supporting their potential for containment and resilience when meeting with traumatic memories. Next, there will be a short presentation of the workshop (goals, structure, trainer and co-trainer). Then the participants will go into the experiential process itself. They will discuss their experience in their dyads and then share them in the big circle. The workshop will be closed with time to integrate the experienced corrective behaviour.

Merete Holm Brantbjerg is a psychomotor-trainer and co-creator of Bodynamic Analysis from 1985-2003. From 2003 till now, she has developed “Relational Trauma Therapy” together with Kolbjørn Vårdal combining psychomotor and neurocentric skill training and systems oriented group-work. Merete has specialised in developing methodology aimed at normalising, including and regulating hypo-states. She leads trainings and workshops in Denmark, and internationally online. She lives in Copenhagen, Denmark.

Who am I – when parts of me are missing? Integrating hypo-parts into our identity

Hall 16 Faculty of Journalism

Hypo-strategies are part of our survival- and coping-strategies. They help us survive and cope with what we cannot bear to feel – in smaller or bigger degrees. And they leave us with often invisible challenges in relation to our sense of who we are. Something has gone lost – we may not know what it is, we may not feel it. We most often don’t notice that something has gone absent – we are just left with a loss of coping-capacity. In this workshop the concept of dosing will be presented as a key entry to including and awakening hypo-states. Microactivations of muscles and connective tissue will be trained. And we will focus on the cognitive aspect of including hypo-states in our map of who we are. A differentiation between hypo-response and hypo-arousal will be presented – with indications of recommended methodology for the different levels of hypo-states.

Enver Cesko is a Clinical psychologist with 40 years of practice, body psychotherapist for 22 years, positive psychotherapist for 20 years, international master trainer for more than 15 years, supervisor and lecturer. Board Member in World Association for Positive and Transcultural Psychotherapy. Council Member of EABP.


Hall 14 Faculty of Journalism

The workshop is consist from two parts; one is theoretical information about theory of Psychosexual psychotherapy(PSP) as an integrative psychodynamic approach for treatment of many sexual dysfunctions; as premature ejaculations, impotence, anorgasmia, vaginismus, or prolong orgasm and lack of sexual desires as well as emotional partnership relational functions. The treatment is starting from the point of developed concepts about sexuality and using the specific methodology plan for treatment. The Treatment process in psychosexual psychotherapy is based on mutual engagement of partners to solve their difficulties that occur in their erotic sexual lovemaking. The methodology of treatment is follow five steps; 1. Understanding – of mutual difficulties 2. Knowing – of each other 3. Acting – to be in a balance 4. Changing – of being aware of mutual differences 5. Growth and developing – going beyond of orgasm The second part is focused on practical demonstration part to show some exercises how to use individuals and with partners for different sexual disorders. Voluntary involvement from participants in the workshop is not mandatory but is according to their willingness and readiness.

Vanya Hristoskova is a body psychotherapist graduated from the Bulgarian Institute for Neoreichian Analytical Psychotherapy. In her work she focuses on stress management, burnout, psychosomatic (especially autoimmune) conditions, issues with boundaries and existential crisis.

A date with my chronic stress

Hall 62 Faculty of Journalism

Stress management strategies are a key component of epigenetics. Our ability (or disability) to manage external and internal stressors has a direct impact on the degree to which we are able to experience transformation, because it influences immensely the strength and the health of the body-mind connection. Stress is a natural human response that prompts us to address challenges and threats in our lives. It is an essential part of our healthy development and can even feel inspirational and motivating if kept within certain time limits. Chronic stress, on the other hand, depletes our capacity to cope with acute stress. It reduces our ability to stay grounded, connected, centered. It prevents us from being truly with ourselves or with the world.

A combination between trauma, character traits and life circumstances bring many of us under chronic stress without even recognizing that. This workshop will focus on the aspect of our identity that feels the need to be under chronic stress. We will look for the place of that aspect in our bodies and we will invite it on a romantic date with us. This experience aims to help us evaluate our attitude towards chronic stress and perhaps transform our relationship with it.

Marilena Komi B.A. in Phil-Edu-Psychology, Psychotherapist, ECP holder, trained (Master’s level) in Gestalt Therapy (European Gestalt Institute – EINA). Accredited supervisor (Genovino Ferri-SIAR) and trauma therapist (EMDR, Greek Institute of Trauma Therapy). EABP Member. BA, MSc in Architecture and Urban Planning (Universita di Firenze). Honorary President of the “Wilhelm Reich Center” in Athens. Author of the book “The Group, the Body and Psychotherapy” (co-author Clorinda Lubrano-Kotoula, Thimari ed.).

The polarity between the male and the female aspect of a person in body psychotherapy/identity in transformative times

Hall 13 Faculty of Journalism

Male and female innerpresentation through roles and stereotypes will be viewed as well as their relationship with the chronic muscular contractions related to psychological causes and the way we deal with them in Body Psychotherapy towards a more harmonic relationship between them. The Reichian approach strongly outlines the importance for the human being in transformative times to discover his/her own flexibility both inside him/her self and inside the society. Can we permit more flexibility and how can body psychotherapy interfere in a positive way at that direction?

Thomas Scheskat born in 1956, master’s degree in education, 10 years of training and leading assistance in Biodynamic Body Psychotherapy (Speyer, Boadella, Boyesen), EABP member and ECP holder, trained in Hakomi (H. Weiss) and in further approaches of BPT (W. Büntig, M. Aalberse); further training in therapy for sexual offenders and DBT. 21 years of leadership experience at a forensic-psychiatric state clinic and 29 years of giving aggression balance trainings for men and mixed groups.

„See me, feel me, touch me – heal me! “ – Body-psychotherapeutic work with aggression as a resource

Hall 66 Faculty of Journalism

Participants of groups and single work report back often going through a transformative and encouraging process. Therefore, they incorporate the idea of distinction between destructive and constructive aggression in their relationships. It becomes more and more important to take position while balancing one’s own rights, responsibly and the contradiction between consideration and impertinence. It mirrors the political conflict between pacifist and militarily solutions to insure human rights.

A healthy attitude to aggression plays a key role for our entire personal development. This must include both the fruitful as well as the harmful aspects of aggression. For the therapeutic access to both sides, we use a pragmatic model of decontaminated aggression on one hand in contrast to a contaminated one on the other hand. We explore this subject in settings of „dialogical confrontations“ by which we`re aiming for the transformation of violence. This means using body- and contact-exercises to distinguish between suppressing and channelling one´s own aggressive force supportive to our personality, health, and fairness with others.