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Imagination & Addiction Edition

January 12th - 14th 2022

9 CEU/CPD (Continuing education UNITs)

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The Master Series brings together experts, originators, innovators, and groundbreakers who change the dialogue around their areas of expertise.

Each program focuses on one Big Idea to unearth the nuances of theoretical frameworks, explore concepts, and reframe our thinking about the world we all live in and the experiences we have in it.

Join us for this amazing 3 day Workshop

Online - worldwide

Experience from the comfort of your own home

Jan 12th - 14th

From 12:00pm Eastern Time - recordings available for 30 days

Unfiltered Expertise.
Authentic discourse.

Imagination is a tool that lets us see ourselves on a path not yet written – or to rewrite what we believed to be immutable. The ways we re-imagine the past or prognosticate about what might happen in the future, for better or worse, are acts of deep imaginative power with enormous potential to change our perception and internal experiences and sensations.

We learned how trauma can paralyze and stymie our capacity to live our lives and make meaningful connections. Here we consider how developmental trauma, and erosion of healthy attachment can obstruct imagination through the lens of addiction, a particularly salient mode for exploring the consequences of arrested imagination, and ask how interventions designed to restore it can be liberating.

Our January Edition will examine interventions that assume imagination as one of their primary methods to establish self-compassion, exploring how imagination functions to offer change at neurological and physiological levels.

Join experts Dr. Gabor Maté, Professor David Nutt and Dr. Richard Schwartz as they demonstrate how therapeutic interventions such as compassion based and psychedelic assisted therapies as well as Internal Family Systems show us how imagination functions in practice and its power to transform perception in both mind and body.

By using imagination, we will gain an understanding of how we are able to reconceptualize the past, future, and our internal world. With our experts learn to break down the barriers we often see in ourselves and our clients that prevent us from seeing new possibilities and feeling new sensations.


Limited spaces available

Our Speakers

Dr. Gabor Maté

Gabor Maté (pronounced GAH-bor MAH-tay) is a retired physician who, after 20 years of family practice and palliative care experience, worked for over a decade in Vancouver’s Downtown East Side with patients challenged by drug addiction and mental illness. The bestselling author of four books published in twenty-seven languages, Gabor is an internationally renowned speaker highly sought after for his expertise on addiction, trauma, childhood development, and the relationship of stress and illness. His book on addiction received the Hubert Evans Prize for literary non-fiction. For his ground-breaking medical work and writing he has been awarded the Order of Canada, his country’s highest civilian distinction, and the Civic Merit Award from his hometown, Vancouver. 

His books include In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts: Close Encounters With Addiction; When the Body Says No; Exploring the Stress-Disease Connection; Scattered: How ADD Originates and What You Can Do About It; and (with Gordon Neufeld) Hold on to Your Kids: Why Parents Need to Matter More Than Peers. Gabor’s next book, The Myth of Normal: Trauma, Illness & Healing in a Toxic Culture is due in Autumn, 2022.

Professor David Nutt

David Nutt is a psychiatrist and the Edmond J. Safra Professor of Neuropsychopharmacology in the Division of Brain Science, Dept of Medicine, Hammersmith Hospital, Imperial College London. His research area is psychopharmacology – the study of the effects of drugs on the brain, from the perspectives of both how drug treatments in psychiatry and neurology work, and why people use and become addicted to some drugs such as alcohol. To study the effects of drugs in the brain he uses state of the art techniques such as brain imaging with PET and fMRI plus EEG and MEG. This research output has led to over 500 original research papers and a similar number of reviews and books chapters, eight government reports on drugs and 35 books, including one for the general public, Drugs: without the hot air,  that won the Transmission Prize in 2014. 

He was previously President of the European Brain Council, the British Association of Psychopharmacology, the British Neuroscience Association and the European College of Neuropsychopharmacology.  He is currently Founding Chair of and holds visiting Professorships at the Open University and University of Maastricht.

David broadcasts widely to the general public both on radio and television. In 2010 The Times Eureka science magazine voted him one of the 100 most important figures in British Science, and the only psychiatrist in the list. In 2013 he was awarded the John Maddox Prize from Nature/Sense about Science for standing up for science and in 2017 a Doctor of Laws honoris causa from the University of Bath

Dr. Richard Schwartz

Richard Schwartz began his career as a systemic family therapist and an academic. He
co-authored, with Michael Nichols, Family Therapy: Concepts and Methods, the most widely used family therapy text in the U.S. Dr. Schwartz was Associate Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Illinois at Chicago’s Institute for Juvenile Research and later at The Family Institute at Northwestern University.

Grounded in systems thinking, Dr. Schwartz developed Internal Family Systems in response to clients’ descriptions of various parts within themselves. He focused on the relationships among these parts and noticed that there were systemic patterns to the way they were organized across clients. He also found that when the clients’ parts felt safe and were allowed to relax, the clients would experience spontaneously the qualities of confidence, openness, and compassion that Dr. Schwartz came to call the Self.

He found that when in that state of Self, clients would know how to heal their parts. This approach to psychotherapy suggested alternative ways of understanding psychic functioning and healing, and lent itself to innovative techniques for relieving clients’ suffering and symptoms. IFS is a nonpathologizing, hopeful framework within which to practice psychotherapy.

A featured speaker for national professional organizations, Dr. Schwartz serves on editorial boards of four professional journals. He has published five books and over fifty articles about IFS. His books include: You Are The One You’ve Been Waiting For: Bringing Courageous Love to Intimate Relationships; Internal Family Systems Therapy; Introduction to the Internal Family Systems Model; and The Mosaic Mind: Empowering the Tormented Selves of Child Abuse Survivors (with Regina Goulding); as well as Metaframeworks (with Doug Breunlin and Betty Karrer), about transcending current models of family therapy.

Linda Thai - Moderator

Linda is a trauma therapist and educator who specializes in brain and body based modalities for addressing complex developmental trauma. She is highly sought after for her trainings in trauma-informed care, compassion fatigue resilience, and vicarious trauma recovery skills for human services professionals. As an adjunct faculty member in the Social Work Department at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, Linda’s decolonized approach to education and engaging teaching style makes her well-loved with students. She assists internationally renowned psychiatrist and trauma expert, Dr. Bessel van der Kolk, with his private small group psychotherapy workshops aimed at healing attachment trauma. She has a Master of Social Work with an emphasis on the neurobiology of attachment and trauma.

Linda has studied Sensorimotor Psychotherapy, Somatic Experiencing, Brainspotting, Internal Family Systems, Trauma-Informed Stabilization Treatment, Havening Touch, Flash Technique, and structural dissociation of the personality, and offers the Safe and Sound Protocol, yoga, and meditation within her practice. Linda works on the traditional lands of the Tanana Athabascan people (Fairbanks, Alaska) with those recovering from addiction, trauma, and mental illness. She is passionate about breaking the cycle of historical and intergenerational trauma at the individual and community levels.


Wednesday January 12th

Understanding Addiction & Imagination with Dr. Gabor Maté

For twelve years Dr. Maté was the staff physician at a clinic for drug-addicted people in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside, where he worked with patients challenged by hard-core drug addiction, mental illness and HIV, including at Vancouver Supervised Injection Site. 

In this presentation Gabor will show that addictions do not represent a discrete set of medical disorders; rather, they merely reflect the extreme end of a continuum of addiction, mostly hidden, that runs throughout our society. 

Gabor will draw on cutting-edge science to illuminate where and how addictions originate and what they have in common. Contrary to what is often claimed, the source of addictions is not to be found in genes, but in the early childhood environment where the neurobiology of the brain’s reward pathways develops and where the emotional patterns that lead to addiction are wired into the unconscious. Stress, both then and later in life, creates the predisposition for addictions, whether to drugs, alcohol, nicotine, or to behavioural addictions such as shopping or sex.

Helping the addicted individual requires that we appreciate the function of the addiction in his or her life. More than a disease, the addiction is a response to a distressing life history and life situation. Once we recognize the roots of addiction and the lack it strives (in vain) to fill, we can develop a compassionate approach toward the addict and help them imagine a future where addiction no longer exists in order to give them the best chance of restoring him or her to wholeness and health.

In this presentation, participants will:

  • Identify what happens chemically and physiologically in the brains of people with substance dependency or behaviour addiction
  • Examine how addiction develops in the mind and how early childhood experiences shape the brain
  • Discuss the social basis of addiction in economic, cultural and political dislocation and disempowerment
  • Determine how to develop a therapeutic relationship in which healing is possible individuals with addictions are encouraged to take responsibility and imagine a different reality

“I needed to write, to express myself through written language not only so that others might hear me but so that I could hear myself.”

Gabor Maté, MD

“We've never had drugs before with an instant effect. This could create a paradigm shift to help people into a different state of thinking that they can then stay in..”

Professor David Nutt

Thursday January 13th

Addiction, Imagination & The Future with Professor David Nutt

Can we use brain science and psychedelic drugs to cure addiction and other mental health disorders? Where does imagination fit in? These are all questions that will be answered by Professor Nutt on Thursday Jan 13th.

Mental health conditions, including addiction are complex disorders that involve many different brain and social processes, as well as the action of drugs or other additive activities e.g. gambling and gaming. 

During Professor Nutt’s presentation we will also be looking deeper into:

  1. What the primary drivers are for the use of addictive substances or other addictive behaviours
  2. The impact of different mental health issues on addiction liability and treatment
  3. The pharmacology of addiction-forming drugs and how we can use pharmacological knowledge to modify addiction and develop new treatments with particular relevance to opioid and alcohol addiction
  4. What the brain sites and processes of addiction are and how they interact to lead to compulsive addictive behaviors
  5. How neuroimaging is illuminating what the neurochemical processes of addiction are. 

In this presentation, participants will:

  • Discuss the primary drivers for the use of addictive substances or other addictive behaviours
  • Examine the impact of different mental health issues on addiction liability and treatment
  • Identify what the brain sites and processes of addiction are and how they interact to lead to compulsive addictive behaviors
  • Discuss current research related to psychedelics such as MDMA, ketamine, and psilocybin and the future prospects of these substances for treating addiction.

Friday January 14th

IFS as a Safe and Deep Healing Map to Psychedelic Territory & Non-Pathologizing Approach to Addiction

Developed over the past four decades, the Internal Family Systems (IFS) model offers both a conceptual umbrella under which a variety of practices and different approaches can be grounded and guided and a set of original techniques for creating safety and fostering Self-to-Self connection in couples and families.

IFS can provide a safe and deeply healing map to psychedelic territory. With an IFS therapist and the appropriate guide, subjects undergoing psychedelic assisted therapy can quickly access a state characterized by the emergence of what IFS calls Self-energy: curiosity, courage, clarity, connectedness, and compassion. It has been discovered that a vast majority of subjects are often able to access, speak about and interact with parts. The map that IFS can provide for psychedelic territory is a promising and inspiring pathway to deep healing, with the potential to speed up the process of getting protective parts to unblend.

Addiction is a complicated and devastating experience for many people and associated feelings of shame and failure often present a barrier between the individual and their true Self. Because addiction can also be a symptom of trauma, the IFS model is a compassionate means to revisit trauma and initiate healing, and in turn, help the individual to address the subsequent addiction behaviors. By looking at addiction as a means of self-protection, staving off deep personal pain, and allowing for compassion and curiosity, IFS can be used to support the individual and empower them as they manage both the catalyst event and the coping mechanism simultaneously.

Addiction and trauma can be treated and healed through IFS without shame and judgement, and instead create space for understanding and empathy which allow for healing of the whole Self and all of the suffering parts.

In this presentation, participants will:
  • Summarize the history and development of the Internal Family Systems model of therapy
  • Identify the 3 categories of sub-personalities that most often present in therapy: Manager parts, Firefighter parts, and Exiled parts
  • Discuss the importance of a therapist’s ability to identify the parts of their own mind during treatment of patients
  • Review how the Internal Family Systems Model can be used as a therapeutic route to healing trauma and addiction

“When you can love all your parts, you can love all people.”

Dr. Richard Schwartz


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ADA Statement

If participants have special needs, reasonable accommodations will be made for persons who request them, consistent with ADA requirements.

Code of Ethics Statement

It is the responsibility of every attendee to abide by the standards set forth in the Code of Ethics for maintaining security and confidentiality of test materials and proprietary information presented as part of this continuing education program. Any materials used as part of this program may not be copied or otherwise distributed, and no proprietary information will be disclosed by attendees to any person not registered for this program.

Conflict of Interest Statement

There is no commercial support for this program nor are there any relationships between the CE Sponsor, presenting organization, presenter, program content, research, grants, or other funding that could reasonably be construed as conflicts of interest.

Utility/Validity Statement

The content of this presentation, when applied according to psychological practice guidelines, within the expertise of the expertise of the practitioner do not pose any risks.

CE/CPD Approval

We have approval for the following CE: CPD, ACCME, ANCC, APA, ASWB and NY PSY

Accreditation Statement

In support of improving patient care, this activity has been planned and implemented by Amedco LLC and Collectively Rooted (CR).  Amedco LLC is jointly accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME), the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE), and the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC), to provide continuing education for the healthcare team.

Physicians (ACCME) Credit Designation

Amedco LLC designates this live activity / enduring material for a maximum of 9 AMA PRA Category 1 CreditsTM. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

Nurses (ANCC) Credit Designation

Amedco LLC designates this activity for a maximum of 9 ANCC contact hours.

Psychologists (APA) Credit Designation

Amedco LLC designates this activity for a maximum of 9 Psychologist contact hours.

The following state boards accept courses from APA providers for Counselors: AK, AL, AR, AZ, CA, CO, CT, DC, DE, FL, GA, HI, IA, ID, IL, IN, KS, KY, MD, ME, MO, NC, ND, NH, NE, NJ, NM, NV, OK, OR, PA, RI, SC, SD, TN, TX, UT, VA, WA, WI, WY

MI: No CE requirements

The following state boards accept courses from APA providers for MFTs: AK, AR, AZ, CA, CO, CT, DE, FL, GA, IA, ID, IN, KS, MD, ME, MO, NE, NC, NH, NJ, NM, NV, OK, OR, PA, RI, SC, SD, TN, TX, UT, VA, WA, WI, WY

MI: No CE requirement

The following state boards accept courses from APA providers for Addictions Professionals: AK, AR, CO, CT, DC, DE, GA, IA, IN, KS, LA, MD, MO, MT, NC, ND, NE, NJ, NM, NY (outstate held)*, OK, OR, SC, UT, WA, WI, WY

MA / MFTs: Participants can self-submit courses not approved by the MAMFT board for review.

The following state boards accept courses from APA providers for Social Workers: AK, AR, AZ, CA, CO, DE, FL, GA, ID, IN, KY, ME, MN, MO, NE, NH, NM, OR, PA, VT, WI, WY

* If the activity is held live in the state of NY, then direct addictions board is required, ie: NAADAC. If the activity is held outside NY, is virtual, enduring or remote, it is considered “outstate” and this reciprocity applies.

Social Workers (ASWB) Credit Designation

As a Jointly Accredited Organization, Amedco is approved to offer social work continuing education by the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) Approved Continuing Education (ACE) program. Organizations, not individual courses, are approved under this program. State and provincial regulatory boards have the final authority to determine whether an individual course may be accepted for continuing education credit. Amedco maintains responsibility for this course. Social Workers completing this course receive 9 GENERAL continuing education credits. These will be live category 1 credits.

The following state boards accept courses offering ASWB ACE credit for Social Workers: AK, AL, AR, AZ, CA, CO, CT, DC, DE, FL, GA, HI, ID, IL, IN, IA, KS, KY, LA, ME, MD, MA, MI, MN, MS, MO, MT, NC, ND, NE,  NH, NM, NV, OH, OK, OR, PA, RI, SC, SD, TN, TX, UT, VT, VA, WA, WI, WV, WY

* WV accepts ASWB ACE unless activity is live in West Virginia, then an application is required.

The following state boards accept courses offering ASWB ACE credit for Counselors: AK, AR, AZ, CA, CO, CT, DC, FL, GA, IA, ID, IL, IN, KS, MA, MD, ME, MO, ND, NE, NM, NH, NV, OK, OR, PA, TN, TX, UT, VA, WI, WY

AL/Counselors: Activities not providing NBCC approval may be approved by the Board for individual licensees upon receipt of acceptable documentation prior to the activity.  Please send course details to your licensing board for approval BEFORE the event.  No approvals afterward by the board.

MI: No CE requirement

The following state boards accept courses offering ASWB ACE credit for MFTs: AK, AR, AZ, CA, CO, FL, IA, ID, IN, KS, MD, ME, MO, NC, NE, NH, NM, NV, OK, OR, PA, RI, TN, TX, UT, VA, WI, WY

MA / MFTs: Participants can self-submit courses not approved by the MAMFT board for review.

MI: No CE requirement

The following state boards accept courses offering ASWB ACE credit for Addictions Professionals: AK, CA, CO, CT, GA, IA, IN, KS, LA, MO, MT, ND, NM, NV, OK, OR, SC, WA, WI, WV, WY

New York Board for Psychology (NY PSY)

Amedco is recognized by the New York State Education Department’s State Board for Psychology as an approved provider of continuing education for licensed psychologists #PSY-0031. 9 hours.

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