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Conference code:

9:15 a.m - 10:45 a.m.


OPENING CEREMONIEs with Keynote Speakers

Ronald Siegel

Ronald Siegel:
Overcoming Inadequacy: The Mindfulness Cure for the Narcissism Epidemic

Mariela Castro Espín

Mariela Castro:
Women and Gender in Cuba

11:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. Sessions


Conference code:

11:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.


John Briere
Ronald Siegel

Acceptance and Forgiveness in Trauma Treatment

John Briere and Ronald Siegel

What allows some people to recover, or even grow from trauma while others are crippled by it? Certainly, the intensity of the trauma, as well as an individual’s personal history and genetic makeup play important roles. But another factor is often overlooked: the ability to see what happened as an impersonal event, the result of factors and forces—what in Buddhist Psychology is called the lens of dependent origination.

We know that recovery from traumas caused by natural events, such as illnesses or natural disasters, tends to be easier than recovering from trauma due to human behavior, whether our own or someone else’s. In the latter situation, people often get stuck in cycles of anger and blame.

This workshop will explore ways to help clients move toward post-traumatic acceptance and forgiveness. We will examine the dynamics and underlying assumptions in blame, and explore important considerations of timing and readiness for venturing down this path.

Participants will be able to:

  • Describe the assumptions and beliefs that lead to blame
  • Apply the lens of dependent origination to varied traumatic events
  • Indicate the contraindications to viewing trauma as an event caused by impersonal factors and forces
  • Describe case histories in which seeing trauma objectively led to post-traumatic growth


Conference code:

11:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.


Resolving Transference and Countertransference
with the Balint Psychodrama Approach
Dr. Alexis Arturo Alonso Rodriguez

In this presentation, participants will be invited to provide case studies of transference and countertransference. Dr. Rodriguez will demonstrate how to use Balint Psychodrama techniques to resolve these cases. The Balint Psychodrama approach was brought to Cuba by French professor Jacques Tosquellas. Since 2009, it has been included in the basic training of Cuban mental health professionals regulated by the Cuban Association of Psychiatry and Psychology.

You will learn:

  • The theoretical foundations of the Balint approach
  • How Balint evolved from the Balint groups to the Balint psychodrama
  • How Balint psychodrama can be developed in response to case studies offered by participants

Conference code:

11:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.

Mabel Whilby

Helping Families Adjust to
an Autism Spectrum Disorder Diagnosis
Mabel Whilby

Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is characterized by alterations in social behaviour, communication, language and symbolic play and possibly also the presence of repetitive behaviors and obsessive thinking. The impact of receiving this diagnosis can be overwhelming.
We have found family-centered intervention to be very helpful in supporting children who receive this diagnosis and their families to adjust mentally and emotionally.

This workshop will discuss the experiences and findings of the psychotherapeutic program for families of children with ASD enrolled in the special school Dora Alonso between 2016-2017.

You will Learn:

  • The stages of adjustment that different families go through and how to approach each stage
  • How parents learned to reconnect with their children as well as themselves to create a more loving and empathetic parenting experience for everyone.

Conference code:

11:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.

Janina Fisher

Somatic Interventions for Treating Complex Trauma
Janina Fisher, PhD

Recent neuroscience research demonstrates that traumatic experiences tend to be encoded not as chronological memories but in the form of non-verbal feeling and body memories, such as intrusive sensations, strong impulses to act out, autonomic dysregulation, and intense emotions. When these implicit memories without words are situationally evoked by trauma-related triggers, the overwhelming events of long ago erupt into the client’s present day experience. Addictive and self-destructive behavior can bring temporary relief but soon pose a bigger threat to the client’s well-being because it takes increasingly larger ‘doses’ to achieve the same effect. Because traumatic activation shuts down the brain areas responsible for good judgment and the ability to learn from past experience, many clients are still unsafe—now due to the risks of their own self-destructive behavior.

New neurobiologically-informed somatic techniques can directly address the physiological responses related to both the trauma and addiction, offering renewed hope for long-term sobriety and bringing long-awaited emotional relief to victims of abuse.

Upon completion of this workshop, participants will be able to:

  • Identify the physiological effects of childhood trauma and neglect
  • Describe the role of addictive and self-destructive behavior in trauma survivors
  • Identify the barriers to stable sobriety and recovery
  • Describe somatic interventions that increase clients’ capacity to tolerate emotion and impulse

2:30 p.m. - 5:00 p.m. sessions


Conference code:

2:30 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Diana Fosha
Esther Perel

​T​he ​edge of attachment and sexuality: ​Explorations​ in intimacy and vitality​
Diana Fosha and Esther Perel

Attachment and sexuality are each evolutionarily-based, neuro-bio-psycho-social systems. Distinct though interrelated, they represent different ways for adults to connect with one another. As a rule, clinicians who focus on attachment have tended to pay less attention to sexuality, and vice versa. People engage in both attachment and sexuality issues as individuals and --when in relationship-- as a member of a couple; and yet, as a rule, individual therapists and couple therapists do not routinely engage one another as a vital part of the process of treatment. In a multifaceted interdisciplinary collaboration, which also included other colleagues, Fosha & Perel have sought to redefine, stretch, maybe even bend some of these de facto boundaries.

Diana Fosha, developer of AEDP, is an attachment-focused experiential individual therapist; known for her fearlessly experiential relational work, she is passionate about working at the edge of moment-to-moment transformational experience. Esther Perel, an experiential systems-focused couples therapist, is known for her interest in redefining the clinical conversation on sexuality and for her lack of interest in received wisdom. Not knowing each other very well when this all began, yet interested in each other’s otherness as a path to professional growth and personal transformation, Diana and Esther discovered a powerful common ground: the privileging of experiences of aliveness and vitality as a key organizing principle for their life’s work.

Diana and Esther began as members of an interdisciplinary group of 6 therapists exploring intimacy and sexuality. Their collaboration deepened though sharing cases, doing consultations and seeing couples together and also together with their group of colleagues, and most recently, through a powerful interview, part of Esther Perel's series "Sessions." This presentation is the next step, and they are excited to launch the next phase of their collaboration in Havana.

Learning Objectives

In this workshop Diana Fosha and Esther Perel, in dialogue with each other and with the audience, will:

  • Discuss their shared cases, and will explore videotaped segments of different aspects of that work
  • Address the edge of attachment and sexuality, with a special focus on trauma
  • Show and discuss segments from their in-depth interview with each other
  • the professional and personal motivations each of them had in undertaking this collaboration.

Conference code:

2:30 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Jack Saul
Dr Alexis Lorenzo Ruiz

Dealing with Trauma after Disasters: International and Cuban Approaches
Jack Saul and Alexis Lorenzo Ruiz

Description coming soon...

Conference code:

2:30 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Elsa Loipa Pradere
rosario maria fraga gomez

The Practice of Psychotherapy in Cuban Public Health
Dr. Elsa Araujo Pradere and Dr. Rosario Fraga Gomez

This workshop discusses how Postmodern Psychotherapy has been applied in the Cuban public health system for group, couple and family therapy since its introduction in 199. The workshop will cover the basic theoretical frameworks used and discuss the experiences of trying to increase the use of Postmodern Psychotherapy and its impact on Cuban Public Health.

You Will Learn:

  • The basic theoretical framework of Postmodern Psychotherapy as practiced in Cuba
  • The impact of Postmodern Psychotherapy on Cuban public health
  • How Postmodern Psychotherapy is growing in Cuban public health


Conference code:

2:30 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.


Bioemotional Integration: Rethinking Talk Therapy
dr. Jorge luis Velazques JULIÁN, MD

Bioneuroemocion® examines the interaction between individual biology and social-cultural narratives in the quest to better understand the human condition and address our challenges. Based on the inseparable relationship between body, mind and emotions, Bioneuroemocion® seeks to facilitate greater emotional well-being by exploring the relationship between emotions and belief systems, perception and interpersonal interactions. It proposes that the best solutions to conflict must take into account that interpretations of events are unique to each individual involved. Beyond a therapy approach, Bioneuroemocion® provides a multi-disciplinary and evidence-based framework that can be applied across all disciplines to facilitate greater emotional intelligence and awareness in all walks of life.

Based at the Enric Corbera Institute, Bioemocional integration (IBE) now involves more than 15,000 students in 38 different cities from around the world. The methodology of IBE is being taught by 45 teachers from diverse faculties including health, science and philosophy. Participating universities include Universidad Ibero-American Tower and the University of Rosario.

For more information about Bioneuroemocion®, please visit

You Will Learn:

  • The history and foundational concepts of Bioneuroemocion®
  • How Bioneuroemocion® can promote
  • a holistic view of life, connecting the mind with the body and the environment.
  • How Bioneuroemocion® integrates social welfare and health sciences to offer psychosocial and integrative protocol for the treatment of diseases.

Conference code:

2:30 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Gina Biegel
Caroline Welch

Positive Neuroplasticity Meets the 4 Ps: Presence, Prioritizing, Pacing, and Pivoting for Women
Gina Biegel and Caroline Welch

In this training, Gina Biegel will explore and provide resources from her newly published book Be Mindful: 50 Ways to Deal With Your (Crazy) Life, (February, 2018). Learn how you can change your brain through positive neuroplasticity. Implement new ways to change your brain to tilt away from the negative and toward the positive. You will come to truly savor the sweetness of positive experiences and turn them into lasting beneficial resources by noticing, attending, and holding on to them.

We will also discover how Caroline Welch’s 4 Ps, as presented in her upcoming book The Mindful Woman, provide a roadmap through our demanding lives.  As women, we are called upon across cultures to play more roles better than ever, thanks not only to societal expectations but pressures that we often put on ourselves.  If you’ve ever thought to yourself: “I can do it all,” “I’ll get caught up this weekend,” or “Others have it figured out, how come I don’t?” then this workshop is for you.  We will take a close look at these myths and explore how you might be able to say “goodbye” to them forever.

Presence is not just sitting on a cushion and having a meditation practice.  Prioritizing is not only selecting what has to be done, but what can be mindfully neglected.  Pacing is not just how fast you go, but remembering that we will all hopefully have a long “health span,” longer than the generations before us.  Pivoting is not only making a change when we know our next move, but finding the courage to make a change even if we don’t know exactly what is next.  We will explore each of these 4 Ps more deeply during our time together.

This training is a game changer: You will return to your offices and homes refreshed!

You will learn:

  • Outline ways you can take positive experiences and turn them into lasting beneficial resources while developing fundamental resources for human needs for safety, satisfaction, and connection.
  • Identify recent advances in positive neuroplasticity on cultivating self-care.
  • Implement findings from the latest science on the benefits of being present and having a mindful awareness practice.
  • Reframe your approach to your days and even months using the 4Ps to enhance your personal and professional well-being.



Conference code:

11:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
(lunch from 1:00 p.m. - 2:30 p.m.)

Adele Lafrance

It’s a Family Affair: Emotion-Focused Family Therapy for the Treatment of Mental Health Issues across the Lifespan
Dr. Adele Lefrance

Part of the Emotion-Focused Therapy “family” and rooted in a deep belief in the healing power of families, the essence of Emotion-Focused Family Therapy (EFFT) is to support caregivers to increase their role in their child’s recovery. This can be done regardless of the child’s age, level of motivation or involvement in formal treatment. The clinician’s role is to support parents and caregivers to increase their involvement in three domains:

  1. behaviour coaching through the interruption of symptoms,
  2. emotion coaching through the processing of avoided or suppressed emotion, and
  3. relationship repair through the healing of parent, child and family wounds.

Throughout treatment, the clinician also seeks to identify, understand, and transform “emotion blocks” in caregivers that may lead to therapy-interfering attitudes or behaviors. This component is critical given that throughout the course of treatment, well-intentioned caregivers can struggle to support their loved one’s treatment. They may even engage in behaviors that enable their loved one’s symptoms, creating challenges for even the most experienced clinicians.

This workshop will provide an overview of the EFFT model followed by outcome and process research on its use with various clinical presentations across the lifespan. Specific EFFT techniques that can be integrated into existing treatment models will be presented using video, demonstrations and an experiential activity.

You will learn:

  • What the EFFT model is including the rationale for a more comprehensive role for parents and caregivers throughout the recovery process
  • The markers of problematic emotional processes underlying therapy-interfering behaviours in caregivers
  • Specific emotion-processing skills to resolve caregiver “emotion blocks”
  • About the key findings from process and outcome research

Conference code:

11:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
(lunch from 1:00 p.m. - 2:30 p.m.)


Stopping the Noise: How to Change the Anxious Mind Rapidly
Reid Wilson

Therapists are supposed to make clients safe and secure, creating a cozy haven from a cruel world, right? Well, when it comes to treating anxiety and OCD, growing evidence shows that the quickest, most effective approach involves instructing them to ramp up their fears while telling themselves how much they welcome the experience. Join internationally recognized expert and author in the treatment of anxiety disorders, Reid Wilson, to learn what cutting edge research is showing us about the possibility of rapid change.

You will learn:

  • How to rapidly engage anxious clients in the therapeutic alliance and change their mindset toward their fears
  • How to persuade clients to adopt a self-help protocol to voluntarily, purposely and aggressively seek out uncertainty moment-by-moment
  • The four paradoxical strategies
    • Detachment and the stepping back process
    • Voluntarily choosing the experience: “I want this”
    • Stepping toward the threat
    • How to be cunning

We will outline the treatment strategy, step-by-step, and illustrate each stage with brief, professionally-videotaped segments of therapist-client interaction within the first two sessions of treatment.

**Conference/schedule subject to change**