Introduction to Internal Family Systems

This course has no current classes. Please the waiting list.

Internal Family Systems is a non-pathologizing, collaborative and empowering model of therapy which fosters transformation, gently, quickly, and effectively. The IFS Model represents a synthesis of two already-existing paradigms: systems thinking and the multiplicity of the mind with an understanding that symptoms are actually the coping mechanism of our parts trying to protect us from pain.

IFS advances therapy by:

  • Showing respect and appreciation for the client’s protective parts, it reduces client resistance and backlash.
  • Helping clients release the extreme beliefs and emotions accrued from challenges and traumas.
  • Regulating affect in a simple and effective way so clients are not overwhelmed during sessions.
  • Supporting mindful self-awareness and self-compassion reducing transference
  • Encouraging clients to attend to parts between session improving self-efficacy
  • Giving therapists practical ways to understand and work with their countertransference.
  • Freeing therapists from the role of trying to police clients' symptoms

The Benefits of IFS for therapists:

1. The IFS therapist is not required to diagnose, interpret or pathologise but to facilitate the development of a relationship between the Self of the client and their Parts.
2. IFS therapist welcomes the client’s symptoms upfront as an introduction to protective Parts showing them respect and appreciation thereby reducing client resistance.
3. IFS gives therapists practical ways to understand and work with transference and countertransference through recognising the interaction of client and therapist Parts.

This two-day Introductory workshop is a mix of:

  • Didactic presentation & group discussion
  • Live demonstration
  • Experiential learning in triads with an IFS coach

Learning outcomes

1. Understand principles and concepts underpinning IFS as a therapeutic modality
2. Explore & practice the difference between normal therapeutic listening and listening for parts in Internal Family Systems
3. Recognise roles parts play in the presenting issues from a non-pathologising perspective
4. Access and explore protector parts in a session using a 6-step protocol
5. Increase affect tolerance & emotional regulation from an IFS perspective
6. Recognise Exile parts in the client’s life or in a session
7. Identify opportunities for integrating IFS into current practice

Who should attend?

Counsellors, Psychotherapists, Coaches, Psychologists, Hypnotherapists, Social Workers, Community Workers, Expressive Arts therapists, Mental Health Nurses and Psychiatrists.