Dialectical Behaviour Therapy for the Treatment of Eating Disorders with Dr. Anita Federici

April 30 & May 1, 2018

Workshop Description:

Eating disorder (ED) treatment is inherently complex, multifaceted, and typicallylong-term. Characterized by disturbed eating patterns (such as food restriction, binge eating, self-induced vomiting, excessive exercise), disturbances in the way the body is perceived, and characteristic personality traits (including perfectionism, risk-avoidance vs impulsivity), EDs typically begin in adolescence and can be life threatening. Individuals with EDs also frequently present with co-occurring anxiety and mood disorders, suicidal and self-injurious behaviour, PTSD, and substance misuse.

Cognitive and behavioural interventions have been the cornerstone of evidence- based treatment for EDs, predominantly for binge eating and purging behaviours.

Over the past decade, Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT), a comprehensive cognitive-behavioural intervention that integrates mindfulness and acceptance- based practices, has been adapted for EDs. A growing literature supports the use of DBT in ED treatment, particularly for individuals with multi-diagnostic presentations and those who have not responded adequately to traditional ED programming.

In this engaging and comprehensive training, the following material will be covered by way of didactic presentation, video material, case examples, practice exercises, small group discussions, and role-plays:

  • How to identify eating disorders
  • Rationale for using DBT for the treatment of eating disorders
  • The Biosocial Theory adapted for eating disorders
  • DBT treatment assumptions
  • Strategies to manage multiple problem behaviours
  • Skills to enhance commitment and motivation
  • How to balance validation/acceptance with change-based strategies across levels of care
  • Adapted diary cards for eating disorder treatment
  • Introduction to DBT skills adapted for eating disorders
  • How to conduct behaviour chain analyses on purging, restricting, binge eating, etc.

This training will address how the above concepts and skills may be used across levels of care (e.g., outpatient individual therapy, day treatment, inpatient programming) and across populations (e.g., adolescents, adults, families).

This is an excellent professional development opportunity for psychologists, psychiatry residents, physicians, social workers, dietitians, mental health clinicians, registered clinical counsellors, nurses, educators and others who interact with individuals, parents and/or families in our community

Dr. Anita Federici is a Clinical and Research Psychologist practicing in Midland Ontario and a registered member with the College of Psychologists of Ontario. She received her PhD in Clinical Psychology from York University in 2008 and completed a Research and Clinical Fellowship in the Borderline Personality Disorder Clinic at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH). Anita has an established reputation for her work as a therapist, trainer, researcher, program director and consultant to practitioners at various hospitals and organizations. She is a recognized authority on eating disorder treatment and dialectical behaviour therapy (DBT). Her work has been presented at international conferences and published in peer-reviewed journals and invited book chapters.

Between 2009 and 2011, Dr. Federici served as the Director of the DBT program at the Cleveland Center for Eating Disorders. In this role she helped to develop one of the first comprehensive DBT day programs for clients with complex and “difficult to treat” eating disorder presentations. She has gone on to work with and train other teams in the DBT model, including the eating disorder programs at the Credit Valley Hospital in Mississauga, London Health Sciences, and McMaster Children’s Hospital. Currently she is working with the Ontario Community Outreach Program, providing DBT training for the OHIP covered provincial ED programs. Dr. Federici is also working to increase ED services in the North Simcoe region.

Approved for 12 hours of MDPAC Group CE credits 2 hours of MDPAC CCI credits.

Afternoon refreshments included

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Cultivating Courage & Shame Resilience within Clients with Ivana Mitchell MSW, RSW, RP, CDWF

 June 4 & 5, 2018

Workshop Description:

Shame - the painful feeling of being inadequate, unworthy, and unlovable - is perhaps the most primitive and complex of all emotions, and commonly experienced by many clients struggling with mental illness, addiction, trauma, aggression, and eating disorders. Shame is at the root of perfectionism, self-loathing, and our inner critic, corroding the very part of us that believes we are capable of change. It is universal and no one is exempt. That means that there is no “us and them” – as professional helpers, we also feel and experience shame alongside our clients. And yet, despite its pervasiveness and power, shame is seldom acknowledged and vastly neglected in helping professions. There is no getting around it: we must have the conversation about shame with our clients and do our own shame work as professional helpers, so we can be fully present, open, and engaged to transform and heal shame for those we support.

This two-day workshop is designed for helping professionals and based on the ground-breaking and transformative methodology of Brené Brown - a social work professor, researcher, and New York Times bestselling author. Brené has spent the last fifteen years studying vulnerability, shame, worthiness, and courage. She has created practical and accessible tools to support individuals as they move through shame to cultivate more courage, compassion and connection in their lives.

With a balance of didactic, interactive, and experiential elements, participants will receive in-depth and practical approaches to working with shame, both as individuals who experience shame as well as helping professionals who support others become more courageous and shame resilient.

Drawing from Brené Brown’s research as well as Leslie Greenberg (Emotion Focused Therapy) and Kristin Neff (Mindful Self-Compassion), participants will be able to:

  • Understand shame as a bio-psycho-social-cultural construct
  • Define and identify shame and differentiate it from other emotions of self-evaluation, such as guilt, humiliation, and embarrassment
  • Identify the physiological, cognitive, and behavioural manifestations of shame
  • Recognize common identity and gender-based triggers for shame
  • Identify ineffective methods individuals utilize to protect themselves from the pain of shame that perpetuate disconnection
  • Understand the relationship between vulnerability, shame, and courage
  • Detect barriers that shame creates to the therapeutic alliance and clients’ progress, and methods to move through the challenges and get unstuck
  • Provide psycho-education to clients about shame – what it is, how it develops, and strategies to become more shame resilient
  • Strengthen therapeutic presence and empathy skills to prevent empathic failure and create a space where clients feel safe to talk about shame
  • Learn focusing techniques and self-compassion practices to facilitate clients’ attunement to their internal experience, helping them better identify their emotions, underlying needs, and respond with kindness and care

Ivana Mitchell holds a Masters Degree in Social Work from York University, with a special education and interest in mental health and psychotherapy. She is a registered member in good standing with the Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers (OCSWSSW). the College of Registered Psychotherapists of Ontario (CRPO) and the Ontario Association of Social Workers (OASW). Working for a Family Health Organization in Woodbridge and in private practice, she currently provides counselling and service navigation to youth and adults struggling with a full spectrum of life challenges. Ivana is also one of a handful of Certified Daring Way Facilitators (CDWF) in Ontario, offering Dr. Brené Brown's psycho-educational programs The Daring Way™ and Rising Strong™, aimed at supporting individuals to embrace vulnerability, cultivate shame resilience, and live a wholehearted life.

Approved for 12 hours of MDPAC Group CE credits and 2 hours of MDPAC CCI credits.

Early Bird Rate: $389.00 + HST (total of $439.57) by May 5th, 2018.

Regular Rate: $409.00 + HST (total of $462.17 after May 5th, 2018.


Understanding and Responding to Suicide Attempts: Skills for Safer Living a group intervention for people experiencing suicidal thoughts and behaviours

Yvonne Bergmans, PhD, MSW, RSW

June 18 & 19, 2018

Workshop Description:

Working with clients at risk for suicide can be both challenging and frightening for care providers. Suicidality crosses all diagnostic categories and for those clients who have had repeated attempts, they are at higher risk for dying by suicide. Working from a cross-theoretical perspective of suicide arising out of deep emotional and psychological pain, known sometimes as “psychache” (Shneidman. 1993), the fluid intersection of the basics of emotion-focus therapy and narrative therapy will begin this two day workshop in understanding and responding to suicide related thoughts and behaviours.

Yvonne and a graduate/peer facilitator will introduce participants interested in working with clients at risk for suicide to a 20-week intervention- Skills for Safer Living: A Psychosocial/Psychoeducational Intervention for people with Suicide Attempts (SfSL/PISA).

Participants will engage in large and small group discussion, didactic presentations and the viewing of a documentary as the basis of content delivery for these two days. Participants will be exposed to learning:

  • An understanding of suicidality as it relates to the client experience
  • An overview of the goals, principles and assumptions of SfSL/PISA
  • Core content, concepts, skills and strategies in the areas of safety and crisis management, emotional literacy, problem-solving and interpersonal relationships as they pertain to those at risk of suicide.

This workshop will be of interest to anyone who works with people who experience thoughts of suicide and/or suicide attempts.



Using Dialectical Behavior Therapy to Treat Emotion Dysregulation in Clients with Sheri Van Dijk

September 17 & 18, 2018

Workshop Description:

Dialectical behaviour therapy (DBT) is a treatment originally designed to treat borderline personality disorder (BPD). In recent years it has been increasingly used to treat many other disorders because of its usefulness in treating clients unable to manage emotions. Following an introduction to DBT theory and how this treatment differs from traditional cognitive behavior therapy (CBT), Sheri Van Dijk will discuss how DBT can be applied to working with clients facing a broad range of conditions such as depression, anxiety and bipolar disorder, in which emotion dysregulation plays a key role. Through lecture and experiential exercises, you will explore the four modules of DBT skills (Core Mindfulness, Distress Tolerance, Emotion Regulation, and Interpersonal Effectiveness) and learn how to teach these skills to your clients. You will learn how to format DBT sessions to provide the structure your dysregulated clients need. In addition, Sheri will introduce DBT strategies to help foster the therapeutic relationship, maximize therapeutic gains, and reduce the likelihood of therapist burnout.

In this workshop you will learn:

  • How to teach your clients the four sets of DBT skills to help them get through crisis situations without making the situation worse; to manage their emotions more effectively; and to develop and maintain healthier relationships
  • How to apply DBT skills to a range of psychiatric illnesses and other problems of daily living (e.g. low self-esteem, difficulties managing anger)
  • Dialectical strategies to address clients who are “stuck” in therapy, resulting in inertia or unhealthy mechanisms of escape and avoidance, and how these strategies can lead to transformational healing
  • Tools such as the Tracking Sheet and the Behavioural Analysis to increase structure in sessions and to help clients move toward change
  • Behaviour Theory techniques to help clients understand what might be maintaining their problem behaviours and to get unstuck from these ingrained patterns
  • Skills to help you improve your own sense of efficacy in therapy, and reduce the likelihood of therapist burnout

Approved for 12 hours of MDPAC Group CE credits and 2 hours of MDPAC CCI credits


RADICALLY OPEN DBT (DBT-RO) One Day Only with Nicole Little, PhD

Friday, October 12, 2018

The Barrie County Club, 635 St. Vincent St. N, Barrie

Workshop Description:

Self-control, the ability to inhibit competing urges, impulses, or behaviours is highly valued by most societies. However, excessive self-control has been linked to social isolation, aloof interpersonal functioning, maladaptive perfectionism, constricted emotional expressions, and difficult-to-treat mental health problems, such as anorexia nervosa, obsessive compulsive personality disorder and refractory depression. The aim of this workshop is to introduce clinicians to the theoretical foundations and new skills underlying Radically Open-Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (RO-DBT) for disorders of overcontrol.

The biosocial theory for overcontrol posits that heightened threat sensitivity and diminished reward sensitivity transact with early family experiences emphasizing “mistakes as intolerable” and “self-control as imperative” to result in an overcontrolled coping style that limits opportunities to learn new skills and exploit positive social reinforcers. A novel thesis linking the communicative functions of emotional expression to the formation of close social bonds will be introduced, as well as new skills emphasizing receptivity, self-enquiry and flexible responding. Using slides, handouts, video clips, and role-plays, new assessment and treatment interventions will be taught including 1) diagnosing over-control 2) targeting social signaling as the key mechanism of change 3) teaching therapists how to recognize and treat “disguised demands” - common indirect OC social signaling behaviors.

Training Objectives

Upon completion of this one-day training, participants will be able to:

  • Explain a new biosocial theory for OC
  • Describe a novel treatment mechanism positing open expression = trust = social connectedness
  • Describe new RO-DBT treatment strategies designed to enhance willingness for self-inquiry and flexible responding.
  • Describe the four core deficits of Overcontrol
  • Describe the RO-DBT treatment structure
  • Describe the RO-DBT treatment hierarchy
  • Explain the most common indirect social signalling styles in OC

Approved for 6 hours of MDPAC Group CE credits and 1 hours of MDPAC CCI credits.

Workshop Rates are below, for student or group rates please contact us at:



Includes Lunch and refreshments

 Biographical Profile J. Nicole Little, PhD

J. Nicole Little, Phd, is a registered clinical counsellor in British Columbia (#7412, B.C.A.C.C.).  She is a senior RO-DBT trainer and supervisor and regular RO DBT blog contributor and is currently co-authoring a RO-DBT workbook. In addition to working in provincial mental health as an eating disorders therapist, she maintains a private practice where she focuses on treating anxiety and depression.  Nicole has been featured as an outstanding clinician for youth in Insights Magazine in regard to her work with sexual and gender identity diversity. In 2014 she received the inaugural Vance Peavey Award for Counselling Excellence and has been the recipient of the prestigious Social Sciences and Humanties Council of Canada scholarship (2006).  Nicole was a much loved instructor in post-secondary for many years but now dedicates her teaching energy to RO-DBT. When not counselling or teaching, she spends her time volunteering in the realm of pet therapy or pretending she knows what is growing in her garden.


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Cognitive - Behavioural Treatment of Problem Perfectionism and Related Disorders with Martin, M. Antony, PhD

November 29 & 30, 2018

Workshop Description:

Perfectionism is a tendency to hold standards for oneself or others that are unreasonably high and overly rigid.  It is a transdiagnostic construct associated with a wide range of psychological problems, including depression, anxiety and related disorders, and others. This workshop provides an overview of problem perfectionism, and practical strategies for assessing and treating this problem, with an emphasis on cognitive strategies, exposure-based strategies, and acceptance-based strategies.  Techniques are based on a number of recent sources, including the presenter’s evidence-based self-help guide, When Perfect Isn’t Good Enough (Antony & Swinson, 2009) and a therapist manual written by the presenter and colleagues, Cognitive Behavioural Treatment of Perfectionism (Egan, Wade, Shafran, & Antony, 2014).  In addition, strategies for treating selected associated disorders (e.g., anxiety disorders, obsessive-compulsive and related disorders, depression) will be discussed.

 The session begins with an overview of problem perfectionism, including definitions of perfectionism, descriptive models of perfectionism, and information on the factors that are believed to cause and maintain perfectionism (including a cognitive-behavioural model).  Next, the assessment of perfectionism will be discussed, including self-report scales, interview methods, and behavioral assessment approaches.  Most of the presentation will focus on the treatment of perfectionism and associated disorders.  Participants will learn about the latest research on treating perfectionism, as well as step-by-step strategies that they can use with their clients.  They will learn about strategies for challenging client’s double standards, overgeneralization, selective attention, and other cognitive biases.  Strategies such as behavioural experiments, Socratic questioning, and related methods will be discussed.  Participants will also learn about behavioural strategies for treating perfectionism and related disorders, including exposure, reducing the use of safety behaviours, behavioural activation, and integrating mindfulness and acceptance-based methods into treatment.  Strategies for dealing with various treatment challenges, including ambivalence about treatment, will be reviewed.  Strategies will be illustrated using video recorded vignettes.

 Workshop Rates are below, for student or group rates please contact us at:



Biographical Profile Martin Antony, PhD

Martin Antony, PhD, FRSC, is Professor in the Department of Psychology at Ryerson University, where he was also founding Graduate Program Director for the MA and PhD programs in Psychology. He holds faculty appointments at McMaster University and the University of Toronto, and he was the founding director of the Anxiety Treatment and Research Clinic at St. Joseph's Healthcare Hamilton. In 2009-2010, Dr. Antony served as President of the Canadian Psychological Association.


Dr. Antony has published 30 books and over 250 scientific articles and book chapters, mostly on the assessment and treatment of anxiety disorders, obsessive-compulsive disorder, depression, and perfectionism. He has co-edited the Handbook of Assessment and Treatment Planning for Psychological Disorders, the Oxford Handbook of Anxiety and Related Disorders, and Improving Outcomes and Preventing Relapse in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. Dr. Antony trains and supervises numerous students in psychology, psychiatry, social work, and other disciplines in the area of cognitive-behavioral therapy for anxiety and related problems, and has received a number of career awards for his contributions to research, training and education. He is a fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, as well as the American and Canadian Psychological Associations and the Association for Psychological Science. Dr. Antony has presented more than 300 workshops and presentations to health care professionals from across North America, South America, Europe, and Australia.

List of Topics to be Covered

  • Overview of perfectionism
  • Descriptive models of perfectionism
  • Perfectionism-related disorders (e.g., anxiety disorders, obsessive-compulsive and related disorders, depression)
  • Pathways to perfectionism and related disorders
  • Assessment of perfectionism and related disorders
  • Introduction to CBT for perfectionism and related disorders
  • Emerging research on CBT for perfectionism
  • Case formulation
  • Cognitive strategies
  • Behavioral strategies
  • Mindfulness and acceptance-based strategies
  • Enhancing treatment motivation


Please stay tuned for more information on upcoming workshops:


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