friday 5 march 2010:

Patricia Coughlin (della Selva) in Maastricht


For Dutch accreditation click here


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Maastricht, Hotel de l'Empereur, Stationsstraat 2   (straight in front of NS railway station of Maastricht)

registration and payment details: see the registration form (international) /  aanmeldingsformulier (dutch)

conference website:


EDT Maastricht proudly presents:



.... dynamic short-term psychotherapy clarified and explained by a prominent and lucid practitioner of Experiential Dynamic Therapy. We are happy to welcome

       Patricia Coughlin (della Selva), PhD


Facilitating the Process of Working through in ISTDP

A one day audio-visual* seminar

*(with fully subtitled video vignettes)


In this full day workshop you will learn how to facilitate the process of working through in Intensive Short-term Dynamic Psychotherapy.  In ISTDP, as in all dynamic therapies, the process of working through, which comprises the entire mid-phase of treatment, is the most crucial, but most neglected, aspect of the treatment process.  

As important as the direct and visceral experience of feelings is in the process of ISTDP, it is only a means to an end – the key that unlocks the unconscious.  Once previously avoided feelings are experienced, and the thoughts, memories, associations and dreams associated with them come to light, we must put all the pieces together.  This process, referred to as “working through”, is most often defined as the cognitive understanding of emotionally felt experience. The difference between traditional dynamic psychotherapy and ISTDP is that this cognitive understanding takes place AFTER the previously avoided emotions are fully experienced.  Insight into their own inner world is most often achieved by patients themselves, rather than as the result of the therapist’s interpretation.

ISTPD is not a cathartic treatment.  Davanloo regards the process of cognitive consolidation, in which the material that has been de-repressed is understood and integrated, as essential. In terms of Malan’s triangles, this is the phase of the process in which the triangle of conflict is directly connected with the triangle of persons.  The patient gets to see that their life is not just “One damned thing after another”, but “The same damned thing, over and over again”.  Research by Pennebaker supports the notion that this kind of deep understanding of self and other is the most enduring result of therapy.  However, only patients who became emotionally engaged in the process achieved this result. Further, integration of emotional and cognitive modes of experiencing enables patients to create a coherent life narrative, a pre-requisite for optimal functioning and secure attachments. These crucial processes will be illustrated in taped vignettes of a therapy conducted by Dr. Coughlin

The program will begin with a didactic presentation of the theory and technique of ISTDP, along with a review of supporting research.  The bulk of the presentation will consist of video-taped vignettes of the process of working through, leading to enduring change in the patient.  There will be time for comments, questions, and answers throughout the presentation.

This workshop is aimed at practicing mental health professionals.  Familiarity with the theory and technique of ISTDP is suggested but not essential.



  9:30 - 10:00  Registration and coffee/tea

 10:00 - 11:15 Introduction, overview of theory and technique of ISTDP

 11:15 - 11:45 coffee/tea

 11:45 - 13:00 Taped vignettes of trial therapy

 13:00 - 14:00 Lunch

 14:00 - 15:15 Taped vignettes of process of de-repression, following breakthrough of feelings

 15:15 - 15:45 coffee/tea

 15:45 - 17:00 Taped vignettes of working through and integration

 17:00 - 18:00 Questions, answers and summary of the day


Patricia Coughlin (Della Selva), Ph.D. is a Clinical Psychologist and leading figure in ISTDP.  She is a founding member and current Board Member of the International Experiential Dynamic Therapy Association and a Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at Thomas Jefferson School of Medicine. In addition to her practice in Philadelphia, PA, Dr. Coughlin has written numerous articles and two of the standard texts in the field, and she has been involved in teaching and training mental health professionals world wide.  For more information on Dr. Coughlin, her background, publications and current activities, visit her website at


participation fees:

225 ( if payment received before 1 december 2009 ); 300 ( as of 1 december 2009 )

payment details and registration: see the registration form (international) /  aanmeldingsformulier (dutch)

(see // for a lodgement offer by the hotel)


Literature (recommended, but mandatory for dutch accreditation points):

D. Malan & P. Coughlin della Selva: Lives Transformed. London: Karnac Books, 2007.


EDT Maastricht is a licensed and certified psychotherapy institute that also favors the practice and study of the various styles of short-term dynamic psychotherapy. Other seminars organized in the series "Proudly presents" were with Ferruccio Osimo (17 march 2006), with Jon Frederickson (4 december 2007) and with Robert Neborsky (11 september 2008).

EDT Maastricht is een erkende en gecertificeerde instelling voor psychotherapie, die tevens een forum beoogt te bieden voor de studie en beoefening van de diverse soorten kortdurende dynamische psychotherapie.  Eerder werden studiedagen georganiseerd met o.m. Ferruccio Osimo (17 maart 2006), Jon Frederickson (4 december 2007) en Robert Neborsky (11 september 2008).

   conference website:                                                                   PDF-version of this page