Clients with trauma often avoid anything that reminds them of it. As they withdraw to perceived safety, they soon find themselves engaging in fewer and fewer activities, abandoning positive behaviours, and neglecting the relationships that brought them joy and meaning.
It’s a chronic pattern of avoidance that maintains and worsens their symptoms. And without breaking this pattern your treatment plan may be going nowhere.
Behavioural Activation (BA) gives you the tools you need to meet avoidance behaviours head-on and re-engage clients in the activities that provide them with the safety, confidence and support they need to stay in therapy and drop down into uncomfortable emotions and memories with you in sessions. Beneficial both as a standalone intervention for PTSD as well as a valuable preparation tool for trauma-focused treatments you’re already using, BA helps clients decrease patterns of avoidance and reduce their PTSD symptoms through identification and attainment of target behaviours.
This one-day training will give you a step-by-step guide for using Behavioural Activation in your trauma practice so you can help clients reduce avoidance, resume valued behaviours and re-engage in their lives!
Watch and discover:
- A step-by-step guide for developing the safety necessary to reduce avoidance behaviours
- How to utilize Behavioural Activation techniques in-session
- Accessible home practice exercises
- Practical interventions to combat the real-world challenges trauma survivors face every day at work, home, and in relationships
- Techniques you can use immediately with trauma survivors to improve outcomes, regardless of where they’re at in the recovery process
You can’t afford to leave this valuable therapeutic approach out of your trauma treatment toolbox!
Lisa Campbell, Ph.D., is the program coordinator for the VA San Diego, South County PTSD Clinical Team. Dr Campbell specializes in the treatment of PTSD and over the past 20 years has treated all types of trauma survivors, both for the VA and her private practice.
Dr. Campbell is the co-author of Behavioral Activation for PTSD: A Workbook for Men (Althea Press, 2018) and an Assistant Professor of Psychology at the University of California, San Diego where she plays an active role in training psychologists. She earned her Ph.D. in clinical psychology from the University Nevada, Reno.
Financial: Lisa Campbell has employment relationships with the VA San Diego Healthcare System and University of California. She receives royalties as a published author. Lisa Campbell receives a speaking honorarium and recording royalties from PESI, Inc. She has no relevant financial relationships with ineligible organizations.
Non-financial: Lisa Campbell has no relevant non-financial relationships.
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- Assess pre-treatment functioning and the impact of trauma-related symptoms in different life domains.
- Utilize tools from Behavioural Activation for activity monitoring, values assessment, and goal setting with clients.
- Create individualized exposure hierarchies using subjective units of distress and determine how clinicians can safely increase the intensity of home practice activities.
- Evaluate how Behavioural Activation can be used in conjunction with other trauma treatment approaches to help clients relearn to tolerate situations and return to meaningful activities.
- Evaluate the research and research limitations of Behavioural Activation techniques impact on trauma symptomology.
- Utilize BA techniques to help clients build healthy habits and reduce unhealthy habits.
Behavioural Activation (BA) as a Treatment Strategy
- Strategies for trauma, anxiety, and depression
- Assessing post-trauma behavioural changes
- How to assess trauma-related symptoms in different life domains
- Uncover obstacles that interfere with treatment engagement
Triggers, Avoidance, and Safety Behaviours
- Examine behavioural patterns that contribute to trauma-related symptoms
- Functional analysis and behavioural chains - connect problem behaviours and traumatic experiences
- Identify maladaptive coping strategies, avoidance and safety behaviours, and addictive behaviours
- Situations that trauma survivors frequently avoid
- Strategies to build mastery and regain confidence
- One survivor’s story: learning to recognize sneaky triggers, avoidance, and safety behaviours
How to Pinpoint Areas of Desired Change with Clients
- Values assessment to identify specific achievable goals
- Establish target behaviours
- Create personalized plan for post-traumatic growth
- Activity hierarchies tailored to client needs
- Transform individual goals into workable steps to foster achievable progress between sessions
- One survivor’s story: where to begin when so much feels wrong
Take Action with Behavioural Activation:
Tools and Techniques to Re-engage Clients with Their Lives
- Techniques for building healthy habits and reducing unhealthy habits
- Relearn to tolerate situations and return to meaningful activities
- User-friendly home practice assignments that allow clients to assess their daily habits in relation to their goals and values
- One survivor’s story: sticking to the plan, one small step at a time
Behavioural Activation Strategies to Overcome Treatment Challenges
- The therapeutic relationship: session avoidance, lack of engagement and treatment drop out
- Identify and target commonly co-occurring issues
- Emotional, behavioural, and interpersonal dysregulation
- Substance use disorders
- Sleep disruptions
- One survivor’s story: when in-person interactions are off limits
Measure Progress and Continued Growth
- Use measurement-based care to assess progress
- Identify successes and areas for continued growth
- Update the treatment plan
- One survivor’s story: treatment flexibility is the key to recovery
Limitations of the research and potential treatment risks
- Social Workers
- Marriage and Family Therapists
- Addiction Counselors
- Other Mental Health Professionals