Therapy on the Wild Side – Depathologizing and Working with “Psychosis” and Extreme States of Consciousness

It can often be difficult to make it to seminars where cool strategies for helping people with psychosis in a really humanistic way are taught (and ISPS-US isn’t having a conference in 2014!).  To help get over that hurdle, I’ve worked with a few people to make available an “online conference,”  ”Therapy on the Wild Side – Depathologizing and Working with “Psychosis” and Extreme States of Consciousness“  where you can pay one low fee, and access a variety of practical and amazing presentations from around the world.

(This is not an ISPS sponsored event, but it is set up as a partial fundraiser for ISPS, because registration through the links in this email sends 50% of the funds to ISPS-US.)

Some of what’s in the conference:

We all know that hearing voices can seem bizarre and disorienting, and the conventional approaches of trying to suppress or distract from them commonly fail, so it can help to have available the alternative of helping people to calmly explore the experience and its possible meaning.  In two different presentations, you can learn how to do a voice profile to understand the voice better, and how to carry on a dialogue with individual voices, in a way that increases coping and integration.  The presenters for this are Ron Coleman, Karen Taylor, and Rufus May, all of whom are leaders in the international Hearing Voices Movement.

Have you ever wondered what the relationship might be between the deliberately induced altered states and dissociation induced by hypnosis, and the more chaotic states called “psychotic”?  Gabrielle Peacock, MD from Australia is trained in Ericksonian hypnosis, but you don’t have to be a hypnotist to learn and benefit from the approaches she teaches, approaches that  honor these individuals abilities in ways that shamans or witch doctors do in other cultures, approaches that can “bring clarity, enlightenment and peace to an individual who feels lost in our western world devoid of such useful cultural guides.

I’ve got a presentation in the conference, it’s called “Understanding Extreme States and “Psychosis” as Attempts to Solve Problems:Integrating Perspectives on Trauma, Spirituality and Creativity.”

There are other presentations as well.  You can learn from Brad and Hilary Keeney about how to “minimize the handling of narrative, causal understanding, explanation, and sideline commentary in favor of plunging directly into the live, unfolding interactive stream of therapeutic interaction,”   Dr. Jeffrey Zeig offers ideas about how to work with the person and not the label, and Bill McLeod, MD shares advice about what does and doesn’t help derived from 50 years experience working inside mental hospitals.

Psychologists, social workers and professional counselors in the US can earn up to 6 CE credits for no additional fee!

There is a lot  more information about the conference and the speakers, as well as some previews of what is offered, on the conference website, where of course you can also register.  Once you register, you can access the presentations whenever you want, or download them to your computer.

I hope you check it out!  Let me know about any questions you have.  And don’t procrastinate:  registration for this conference is likely to be available for only a few weeks.

About Ron Unger

I am a licensed clinical social worker and therapist who works with people diagnosed with schizophrenia and other psychotic disorders, using a respectful and skill building approach called cognitive therapy for psychosis. I also talk and teach seminars related to this approach. You can read more about me and about how I became interested in this field by going to my blog,, and clicking on the tab "about Ron Unger."
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