In this series of workshops, we explore a variety of field-tested and evidence-based approaches for providing teens developmentally appropriate, effective, and transformative therapy. Packed with practical strategies, stories from the field, and a bit of inspiration, the workshops explore topics such as fostering therapeutic alliance, facilitating change, treating trauma, and more.
- Reframing Resistance: Maybe Teens Aren’t Stubborn, Oppositional, or In Denial
- Facilitating Change: Practical Strategies for Helping Teens Move Forward
- Cultivating Rapport: How To Build Therapeutic Alliances with Teens
- Behind the Mask: Depression in Adolescent Males
- My Brain Hates Me: Narrative Approaches to Intrusive Thoughts
- Substance Use Disorders and Behavioral Addictions in Teens
Descriptions can be found below. These trainings provide 3 general CEUs each and are typically scheduled to include one 15-minute break. For more details or to schedule a presentation, contact me today.
REFRAMING RESISTANCE: MAYBE TEENS AREN’T STUBBORN, OPPOSITIONAL, OR IN DENIAL
Many teen clients seem unwilling, unengaged, or uninterested in therapy. That doesn’t mean they’re resistant, though. It means they don’t want to talk about their feelings with a stranger, learn shrink-wrapped coping skills, or identify measurable treatment goals. What teen would?
In this highly interactive workshop, we’ll reframe this so-called resistance from developmental, attachment, and trauma-informed perspectives — to help us look beyond their initial reluctance and engage teen clients more effectively. Sometimes, that’s all it takes for the reluctance to disappear. Other times, we discover clients are stuck. In other words, they’re trapped in ineffective patterns of thinking and doing. We’ll explore that Stuckness, identify common exacerbating factors, and consider field-tested ideas for helping teens get unstuck.
FACILITATING CHANGE: HELPING TEENS MOVE FROM AMBIVALENCE TO ACTION
Change is a process, not an event. Many teens enter counseling with little commitment to this process. Instead, they seem resistant, stubborn, or in denial. Our goal as professional helpers isn’t to talk them into action — that wouldn’t work anyway — but to help them resolve their ambivalence about change, find their own motivation, and start moving forward.
We’ll start this workshop by examining core ideas from Motivational Interviewing and the Stages of Change model — two evidence-based approaches to facilitating lasting change. Then we’ll explore stage-specific interventions, strategies for integrating change-talk into every session, and field-tested ideas for facilitating change with teens. Along the way, we’ll examine developmental considerations, common obstacles, and more.
CULTIVATING RAPPORT: HOW TO BUILD THERAPEUTIC ALLIANCE WITH TEENS
Building therapeutic alliance can seem daunting to many clinicians, especially when working with hard-to-engage teens. However, studies show effective therapeutic alliances are absolutely essential for engagement, retention, and positive outcomes.
We’ll start this workshop by exploring the importance of developing effective alliances and identifying common reasons teens can be resistant to treatment. Then, we’ll develop practical skills for overcoming those obstacles by increasing our trustworthiness, nurturing connectedness, and embodying empathy. Along the way, we’ll explore the role of self-disclosure, field-tested strategies for engaging teens with insecure attachment styles, and more.
BEHIND THE MASK: DEPRESSION IN ADOLESCENT MALES
Depression is soaring among adolescent males. Unfortunately, these young men frequently go undiagnosed and untreated, often because they don’t exhibit typical diagnostic criteria. Instead — after a lifetime being told boys don’t cry — they appear angry, oppositional, self-destructive, or simply numb. They hide behind these masks, pushing away the world and hoping nobody notices they’re actually sad, lonely, vulnerable boys.
In this workshop, we’ll develop the knowledge and skills to look behind those masks and address the roots of this covert depression, the impact of the Guy Code, and the Stuckness that results when biological predispositions and environmental stressors collide. Since this often includes Big Questions about death, meaninglessness, and isolation, we’ll also consider strategies for exploring existential themes with depressed adolescent males.
MY BRAIN HATES ME: NARRATIVE APPROACHES TO INTRUSIVE THOUGHTS
Description coming soon.
SUBSTANCE USE DISORDERS AND BEHAVIORAL ADDICTIONS IN TEENS
Description coming soon.