1-day workshop

Complex Trauma: how to work effectively with challenging cases new

This practical workshop covers the unique challenges of working with complex trauma cases and gives you clear guidance on the most effective ways to help

Advanced CPD

Course Factfile

Complex Trauma – how to work effectively with challenging cases

  • Standard price: £192.00 per person

Price includes lunch, refreshments and course notes
LIMITED SPACES available per course


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Join our trauma expert Ros Townsend in London on Friday 31st March for this invaluable day’s training – book your place online now or call our friendly team on 01323 811690 to avoid disappointment.  Other venues available.

You have saved my life! Never forget that...

SW, Veteran, Service in Iraq – helped by human givens therapist

Why take this course

Clients suffering from Complex PTSD (C-PTSD) or who have experienced trauma in a shutdown or dissociative state, can present unique challenges to practitioners working with them – but with the right knowledge and skills we can help sufferers move forward in their lives.

In this hands-on, experiential workshop you will learn more about what makes trauma ‘complex’, why shutdown or dissociation are often experienced by sufferers, and how to best work with such presentations using the Human Givens framework of understanding. You will also have the chance to collaborate with other experienced practitioners and clinicians during exercises designed to further your understanding, add to your existing skillsets, and bring wider context to an often-misunderstood area of work.

During this intensive day of live, in-person training, experienced psychotherapist Ros Townsend will introduce you to a framework within which you can set your understanding of complex trauma presentations and discover the opportunities that we have to help clients move forward from their difficulties. You will learn more about the neurobiology of the automatic survival options that we have available to us, especially dissociative and ‘shutdown’ states, and leave with an understanding of how to use this knowledge to inform your work, giving you greater confidence to work creatively and flexibly with such presentations.

From understanding the symptoms that are now recognised as distinguishing C-PTSD, to adapting existing HG techniques and strategies and introducing new tools and skills, this course will explore how we, as clinicians, can approach such complex presentations without getting lost in the complexity ourselves. Using case histories and discussion you will have the chance to understand more about the unique challenges that such work presents and to leave feeling more confident in your ability as a therapist to work effectively and contextually with these.

Ros is a brilliant teacher and presenter. She made the whole course interesting, engaging and informative as well as very supportive...

Gemma Rogers, after Rewind Technique workshop

What will you learn

  • What Complex PTSD (C-PTSD) is
  • What other symptoms a client may present with in addition to those meeting the criteria for ‘classic’ PTSD
  • How to effectively work with these within the Human Givens framework of understanding
  • Vital tools for psycho-education – both adding to your own understanding and to pass on to clients
  • Why individuals enter into a dissociative or ‘shutdown’ state
  • The difference between ‘freeze’ and ‘shutdown’
  • Why anger can present when an individual comes out of a ‘shutdown’ state
  • How to help a client deal effectively with anger if it does arise
  • The crucial role of the pattern-matching processes in the brain in post-traumatic stress symptoms – and how the kinds of templates stored can subtly differ in more complex trauma
  • How to adapt existing techniques – such as rewind and deconditioning molar memories – to work creatively with such presentations
  • The Dos and Don’ts when working with Guided Imagery in complex presentations
  • How to refine your Guided Imagery skillset to powerfully benefit clients who have experienced trauma in a shutdown state
  • Why any work that we do must be informed by the innate ability we all have to recover from trauma
  • How to avoid negatively reframing trauma and making symptoms worse
  • The most effective ways to help clients towards recovery and post-traumatic growth

Under careful guidance from the tutor, you will:

  • Explore and discuss the different survival options available to us as humans in traumatic situations
  • Learn more about the neurobiology of these states – including our passive survival responses
  • Develop a new framework of understanding within which to set your work with all kinds of trauma
  • Understand more about why ‘shutdown’ or ‘dissociation’ are often associated with complex presentations
  • Understand why addictions and self-harming behaviours are often a part of the picture
  • Work collaboratively with peers and colleagues to extend and develop your own skillsets and knowledge
  • Explore how guided imagery can be adapted and used to most powerfully benefit clients suffering in this way

You will leave with:

  • The confidence to work creatively and flexibly with a wider range of presentations
  • A clear understanding of a framework within which you can work and continue to develop and adapt your tools and skillsets
  • An appreciation of the importance of taking your time with such work and proceeding at a pace right for each individual client
  • An understanding of how to support clients in moving forward from the use of faulty coping strategies – such as addiction and self-harm
  • Greater confidence in creating metaphors that work powerfully for clients
  • An understanding of how helping a client to meet their emotional needs is particularly key to recovery in the most complex cases

Throughout the day there will be plenty of opportunity for you to ask questions and to engage in collaborative work and discussion with the tutor and with experienced colleagues and practitioners.

Dates and venues

Important note

Important note

Working with Complex PTSD requires specific skills and experience and thus is only suitable for practitioners either already working in this area and looking to extend their skillset or those who are already practicing as therapists and wish to begin working in this area.

Who is this course suitable for?

Course Programme

This intense 1-day training proceeds through a blend of talks, skill-developing exercises, discussions and deconstruction of real-life case-studies. There is also plenty of opportunity for networking and discussion during the breaks.

The training runs from 9.30am–4.00pm.

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Complex Trauma: how to work effectively with challenging cases
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