Schema Therapy for Shame and Guilt-based Difficulties

27-28th March, 2025 (online)
(9:30am - 4:30pm UK time)

Janis Briedis and Dr Helen Startup, Consultant Psychologists

Individuals who endure early life trauma may go on to experience disruption in the coherence and continuity of their sense of self, and may have shame and guilt at the core of their selves. In Schema Therapy we conceptualize these clients via a mode map as having overpowering Punitive, Guilt-inducing and Invalidating Critic modes. For these clients’ their Vulnerable Child part may be ‘fused’ to a highly forceful inner Critic, giving rise to a core sense of defectiveness, dissociated states, and a tendency to switch between harmful coping strategies, leaving basic emotional needs unmet at core level. This workshop is designed for therapists with knowledge of schema theory and therapy and experience of working therapeutically with clients who have endured trauma. This workshop is highly specialised and aims to support therapists to conceptualise shame and guilt in the context of complex trauma presentations and to support these individuals to safely and effectively engage in the therapeutic process.  


Topics covered at the workshop

  • Explore evolutionary, developmental and attachment perspectives on the development of the self and complex emotional responses
  • Have an overview of leading trauma theories and their understanding of shame and guilt (attachment, compassion-focused, polyvagal, sensorimotor)
  • Conceptualise shame and guilt using a schema mode framework
  • Work with shame, guilt and dissociation across diagnoses: stepping beyond the diagnoses of Personality Disorder, Complex PTSD and Dissociative Spectrum Disorders
  • Explore relational implications for working with highly shame-prone and dissociative clients - brushing along the edges of limited parenting and empathic confrontation
  • Observe and practice strategies for working with shame as an embodied pre-verbal trauma state 
  • Observe and practice the key interventions for working with highly traumatised individuals 
  • Un-fusing blended critic states from Vulnerable Child 

Training costs and to book

£290 for a two-day workshop.

Payment may be made by card or bank transfer. Please email us if your employer requires an invoice and/or if you wish to pay by bank transfer.

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ISST Schema Therapy Society STS