Friday, November 30, 2012

Mind Body Healing Hypnosis: Techniques For Adults and Children

***Attention RRT Practitioners***
Read Below For Special Pricing!

About This Training
We are excited to announce a new training for therapists interested in dissolving trauma with hypnosis. Learn to use Hypnotherapeutic Techniques like Age Regression, Ideomotor Signaling, Mind/Body Awareness and Cognitive Flips to deal with disturbing thoughts and underlying issues that some of our clients experience.
* Self-Hypnosis and how to teach your clients
* Age regression to target and dissolve disturbing thoughts and events
* Ideomotor Signaling to address physical symptoms and trauma
* How to deepen trance, what to say when eyes are closed and Hand Inductions
* Experience guided, interactive meditation, understand mind/body connection and energy shifts
* Shifting traumatic memories and ending the loop that keeps clients stuck
* Rational Hypnotherapy and the Library Technique
* Anchoring within Hypnosis to shift negative self-concepts

National Board Certified Hypnosis Instructor, Developer of Hypnosis with Children and Heal The Healer Seminars, Trauma Specialist, Experienced Crisis Therapist, Certified EMDR, Master Practitioner RRT, RTR
Developer of Women's Wellness and Healing Retreats, Expert Mindfulness and Regression Therapist, Trauma Specialist, Certified NLP, Master Practitioner RTR, RRT, REBT 

What they are saying...
"Molly is amazing! I just attended my 2nd training. Not only did I take away a score of amazing techniques, but in about 10 mins with Molly she healed my trauma and accompanying long-term back pain! Molly has to be experienced to be believed."  
- L.F. Beverly Hills

"Laura has a true gift for healing. She has a direct, easy teaching style. I learned new trauma techniques beyond just desensitizing the client and how easy they transfer for our clients everyday issues!"
- J.M. North Carolina

Enroll Today! Only $485 per person
Early Bird: $395 Receive discount if you register by Jan. 4
RRT CP's: ***$285*** Early Registration

JANUARY 25 - 27, 2013
LOCATION: Bethany Retreat and Conference Center
18150 Bethany Center Dr., Lutz/Tampa FL 33558
Single Occupancy+6 meals $350
Double Occupancy+6 meals $300
Commuter: $125

***Bethany Center has a NO refund policy after Jan. 11

Registration:  Friday 11:30 a.m. - 1 p.m.
Program:       Friday 1 - 7 p.m.
Saturday 9 a.m. - 7 p.m.
Sunday 9 .m. - 4 p.m.
You may cancel your registration by contacting us by Jan. 4, and you will receive a tuition refund less a cancel fee of 10% of the total tuition.
Please note: Occasionally changes are made due to speaker availability, participant demand or unforseen circumstances. While Molly Sanford, LCSW, and Laura DelleDonne-Schmidt, LMHC, will do everything possible to ensure participant satisfaction, Molly S. and Laura D.'s liability is limited to the tuition fee.
Please remit Registration and Payment to:
Your Promote Healing Team
Phone: 813-991-5593
Toll Free: 866-615-(HEAL)4325
We look forward to seeing you there!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

How RRT Prevails Over Most Therapies

By Mark Chidley, LMHC, CAP
            Certified Practitioner, Rapid Resolution Therapy     
All therapists have the common experience of sitting in a first-session intake with a distraught client where you learn that they have tried therapy three, four, five, half a dozen or more times before for the same issue. Some might ask themselves, "What about them has made it so hard for others to help them?" That is the wrong way to look at them. The reason this client has not found relief is typically because the prior therapists didn't know how to fix what was wrong. You see, clients are in pain and their pain makes them very persistent in their search for relief. They will tolerate being viewed as a walking pathology but will not tell their therapists about the toxic effect that it is having or the fact that the therapy really isn't working for them. They are on our turf and they know it, and even the boldest of people will keep it to themselves. They will simply cancel their appointment one day and stop coming in.

So what is going wrong? I didn't really understand it until I studied and became certified in Rapid Resolution Therapy. RRT clinicians are taught to pay very close attention to the connection that is forming from the very first moments. We are taught to speak with our intended effect always in mind. If we can't help the client, then we make it clear to them that it's due to our lack of skill and not some defect in them. We don't put it on them or make it about them. But happily and thankfully most of the time we can help and usually within the first few sessions.

My purpose here is not to explain the technical side of how this is done but rather to show what's usually going on and contrast it to what I consider a qualitatively better experience. Not long ago, I watched a tape of a therapist of another stripe working with an Iraqi vet with severe PTSD. She had been with him for a whole year of sessions and yet he was still flooding, having nightmares, unable to work, drinking episodically to manage intense distress, mired in deep shame about his condition and the effect it was having on his marriage. She was trying her best in a conjoint session to improve the connection between the vet and his frustrated, scared spouse. The discussion that ensued among mental health professionals in the room assumed this man was unfixable and that he would have to live with his condition forever. That at best, a stronger relationship with his partner could possibly buffer the devastating effects of PTSD and counseling would aim at helping them manage it together. As beneficial as a good marriage might be, I saw right there, with the technologies on hand to address some of the more difficult conditions, many of us therapists have lost hope in our own craft. They continue to meet with clients, as this therapist had, under the cloud of knowing they have little to offer for the problem at hand and think they are doing well with at least offering "support." But that crucial shift would never be directly disclosed.

I stopped to consider what a curious thing this is that might only be happening in our field. If a dentist couldn't fix a tooth or a mechanic couldn't repair a car system, they would say so in the work-up phase and either refer to a more qualified colleague or break the bad news without delay. There is a basic dishonesty going on in mental health. I can't say for sure why it occurs. My guess is it occurs unintentionally because of a confluence of complex causes that exist in our field, among them shame at not having an answer, the need to be needed, and sharp ideological competition. I couldn't help but wonder what effect meeting under this cloud would have on both therapist and client through time.

I imagine it like this:
This vet would continue to come in for his weekly supportive meeting with his individual therapist. He would be looked upon as an especially problematic (read hopeless) case and everyone right out to the receptionist at the front desk would view him that way. He would be recommended to go on regular doses of prescribed medication and warned he must stay on his regime. He would pay his copays and assemble and submit the documentation necessary to stay on disability, which would now be incentivized and protected because itʼs his only means of income. He might be funneled into a support group with other vets who've come to see themselves as broken and be encouraged to sit with them once a week and talk about it--the misery of living with horrific symptoms and just struggling to stay alive. This is the current state of the art, with few exceptions. Iʼm thinking if Iʼm that vet Iʼd go anywhere, to the ends of the earth if necessary to escape this fate. I would avoid like the plague anyone who would see me that way or recommend that dance card as my primary treatment plan. I would want to start fresh with someone who believed I could get well.

Iʼve been trained in a way that is more effective than most and looks at clients as people who can get well. Iʼm aware as I write this we in the RRT community havenʼt done a good job of getting the word out. We have to do better. We have to let those with broadcast abilities know that weʼve left behind our traditional training and the dead ends it leads to, and that we do therapy in a much different way and from a much different orientation.

We don't just care, we actually repair.
Mark A. Chidley, LMHC, CAP, a fully licensed mental health counselor and certified addictions professional, offers counseling services at his office Kelly San Carlos Executive Center in Fort Myers, Florida.He has been in private practice since 1997. He holds certifications in Rapid Trauma Resolution (2010), Imago Relationship therapy (2001), and now specializes in the treatment of couples as well as individual trauma recovery and anxiety issues. He brings rich experience from a combined 26 years of hospital work and mental health counseling.

Friday, November 23, 2012

The Many Wonders of the Brain

Certified Practitioner, Rapid Resolution Therapy

Someone contacted me recently asking for help with a family member who had been suffering extreme depression during the past six months. She explained that this woman had seen a number of therapists, had been hospitalized after trying to commit suicide, and was presently living with round-the-clock supervision, since she was unable to adequately take care of daily tasks. The woman who contacted me lives in another state, and she heard my work from another person (a "six degrees of separation" type of thing!). She said she was willing to try anything, but she was skeptical that Rapid Resolution Therapy would help. This is common for most people, so I didn't think much of it. But what struck me most was how "in the dark" people are about mental health. 

Having recently finished Norman Doidges's The Brain that Changes Itself, I see that there is no longer any question of the brain's adaptation to experience, both rewarding and challenging. Study upon study, as demonstrated in the chapters of the book, show very clearly how the brain rewires and adapts to the experiences the individual encounters. From retraining the brain to acquiring movement after a stroke to reorganizing the brain so that blind people learn to see and autistic children can learn to speak and interact*, the book is, without a doubt, required reading for anyone interested in the mind. I particularly liked the part about how imagining lifting weights strengthens the muscles of the arms almost as much as actually lifting the weights!

RRT works precisely because of its ability to reorganize the mind. As repeated over and over again in neuroplasticity lingo, "neurons that fire together, wire together."  By looking at things in a different way, we automatically draw our minds toward that and, in doing so, automatically rewire our brains. An alcoholic thinks about the joys of alcohol all the time, so his/her brain is wired in that way. Reorganizing the mind to no longer focus on alcohol, for instance, we are rewiring the brain. A corollary to the above statement is that "neurons that fire apart wire apart." So when we get the client's brain to no longer find alcohol appealing, we are changing the map of the brain and changing how the neurons interact with each other. 

The book is readable, interesting and highly entertaining. Whatever opinions I may have of it don't nearly do justice to the actual studies that are cited or to the conclusions that are drawn. My only disappointment is that nowhere does the author refer to Jon Connelly or to Rapid Resolution Therapy. I'll have to email him about that...

*I worked with a young man with Aspergers, which is thought of as a high-functioning autism. He was brilliant (on his way to a prestigious law school) but lacked even the most basic of social skills. I saw him twice. His mother called two weeks later to thank me for the wonderful change she saw in her son. Whereas he rarely spoke to anyone, he was now flirting with a waitress at a restaurant; whereas he hated talking on the phone with his critical and impatient grandmother, he was recently chatting with her about his life and inquiring about his aunts and uncles and cousins. His mind and brain were now working in a useful way!

Susan Wolfson, LCSW, is a Certified Practitioner in Rapid Resolution Therapy who maintains a successful practice in Bradenton, Florida. You can reach her through her website at or follow her blog at

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

The Art of Science - Guest Blogger CP Mark Chidley

By Mark Childley, LMHC, CAP
Certified Practitioner, Rapid Resolution Therapy
In the Middle Ages physicians used to deal with fevers, infections, and all manners of illness by bleeding the patient. Cuts were made in various strategic places on the body, and it was believed letting blood flow released pernicious elements such as too much heat, bile, phlegm, etc. Later on researchers got the idea of replacing blood. At first the blood of sheep and other farm animals were used because it was thinner, cooler and didn't clot so quickly. But given in any doses but small quantities, the patient usually died. Primitive goose quills were used long before silver pipettes and eventually needles. If a person had an open wound in the 19th century on the American frontier, it might get packed with bear grease or even dirt. Disease killed more soldiers in the Civil War than bullets because prior to germ theory, men routinely drew water for drinking and cooking from the same streams or lakesides they used as latrines. Only by degrees did medicine evolve new practices based on matching blood type, using sterilized instruments, creating a sterile field in wound care, and practicing basic sanitation.

Recently Melinda Paige, Ed.S., LMHC and Master Practitioner of Rapid Resolution Therapy wrote, "Traditional grief counseling is based on the belief that painful and sad feelings need to be experienced even more than they have been in order to finally be released." This, we could say, is representative of the old medicine in our field. It is in contrast to newer findings from brain research that if the amygdala and the HPA axis (responsible for the fight, flight, or freeze response) can be kept quiet while the prefrontal lobe reprocesses experience, frozen grief and other painful reaction patterns actually seem to heal more efficiently. Fear and traumatic hyper-arousal constricts awareness and inhibits learning. It seems the brain can resume normal exploration of reality, rewire itself and relearn almost anything, including trust, if provided a safe haven and dependable context.

John Bowlby, as early as 1969, started defining working models of the self as interpersonal and relational. Dan Siegel has expanded this into an interpersonal theory of mind thatshows how moment by moment responses in therapy can be used to reconstruct experience in a more positive way. Self-concept is always in relation to others and clients who have suffered painful blows to their identity through trauma can be made accessible to a wider cache of potentially available images used to construct a sense of self, providing the therapist can create a special atmosphere of attuned responsiveness, comfort, respect, and structure.

Rapid Resolution Therapy incorporates all these lessons as therapists pinpoint and eliminate each factor that leads to debilitating traumatic responses. We dismantle destructive meanings and build, throughout the session, toward a new, emotionally neutral re-assignment of traumatic material as mere "data," shifting it away from a repetitive reliving of the experience itself. We offer a safe haven of attuned responsiveness in which clients can look through a different lens to see their own life and the actions of others in a way that sets them free from the disabling constructs of the past.

The business of science is to illuminate the existence of things through a dispassionate examination of causes. It is a slow, methodical way of widening our perception of the world  and stands in contrast to the many ways we get bogged down while making sense of things. We recognize this and teach our clients that moralisms, dogmas of the past, and other faulty explanations can take us off track and even cause further harm. Yet there is no place for arrogance in this, merely gratitude. We stand on the shoulders of those who have gone before, as we open ourselves to what new insights science has to teach. We allow our own minds to be updated and look back on what we've done as the best we could do with what we knew at the time. We add new tools to a widening arsenal and apply them to the endlessly fascinating enterprise of helping others.

Mark A. Chidley, LMHC, CAP, a fully licensed mental health counselor and certified addictions professional, offers counseling services at his office Kelly San Carlos Executive Center in Fort Myers, Florida. He received his education at The University of Iowa, Princeton Theological Seminary, and the University of South Florida. He has been in private practice since 1997. He holds certifications in Rapid Trauma Resolution(2010), Imago Relationship therapy (2001), and now specializes in the treatment of couples as well as individual trauma recovery and anxiety issues. He brings rich experience from a combined 26 years of hospital work and mental health counseling. He is married and has three children.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Success at Level I Training!

Dear Jon,

This is Carrie Springer writing. I had the pleasure of attending your Level I training this weekend (the grasshopper phobic). I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart, both for the time you took to teach us, as well as for the amazing work you do for trauma survivors. I have been doing trauma work since I was in training and am truly passionate about helping trauma survivors find peace and happiness. I like to think I have done some very good work, but now I know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that I am on the way to healing others in a way that is more powerful than anything I have ever done. I am more excited than I have been in a long time as a professional. More excited than ever, actually. I'm sure you hear this a lot!

I am looking forward to continuing my training. I now see my professional future in a way that brings me both peace and excitement! I know that you have many practitioners already doing pro-bono work. But still, I am sure a great need still exists. I know I have a lot of learning to do yet, but I would like to offer my willingness to provide pro-bono treatment if there is a need. I am in Valrico (the Brandon ,FL area). Please don't hesitate to call me, particularly if I can offer help to someone who might otherwise not get treatment.

I look forward to seeing you in a few weeks,
Carrie Springer, Ph.D., is a psychologist practicing in Valrico, Florida. Her areas of clinical practice include sexual trauma, women's issues, and lesbian/gay/bisexual affirming therapy. You can reach Carrie through email or phone at 941-704-6668.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Rapid Trauma Resolution: An Advanced Model of Treatment

Certified Practitioner Wayne Brown shares his excitement in the genius that is the Connelly method of Rapid Trauma Resolution. This advanced model of treatment utilizes multi-level communication eliminating the negative effect from painful life events. This unique and respectful approach to healing facilitates transformation through powerful tools that effect emotions, beliefs, expectation and even perceived identity.
Learn advanced and innovative techniques while becoming effective facilitators of growth and healing. Rapid Trauma Resolution provides emotional freedom to survivors of sexual violence, incest, child abuse and other traumatic events.

Learning Objectives:

  • What are the elements of building a strong connection with clients?
  • How to speak in a way that is understandable to the subconscious?
  • What are activators and how can activators assist clients with trauma resolution?
  • What are 3 ways that trauma causes harm?
  • What is the neuroscience of trauma?
Date: November 21
Time: 1 P.M. EST
Duration: 1 hour

To register for this Webinar for 1.0 Continued Education Units, please click here
Certified Practitioner Wayne Brown, LCSW, CAP, CHt, maintains a successful consulting and psychotherapy practice in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. In his role as adjunct professor for the faculty of general education at Everest University, he teaches courses in psychology, critical thinking and motivation. Wayne obtained his B.A. from the University of Toronto and his Master of Social Work degree from Florida International University in Miami. Wayne has completed intensive training in Clinical Hypnotherapy at the Institute For Survivors of Sexual Violence, Inc. In addition to his private practice Wayne regularly conducts lectures and workshops in the South Florida community, and was most recently recognized by the Florida Department of Health "for his enduring commitment to the profession".

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Certified Practitioner John Smith Guest Article - What is Depression?

What is Depression?
by Dr. John Smith, Ph.D, LCSW  
In light of several recent studies that show the harmful side effects and lack of effectiveness of antidepressant medications I have begun to rethink my approach to depression. Many believe depression to be a combination of psychological and biological factors that often leave a person in a debilitated state of functioning. People with depression often become hopeless and some are even led to suicide as a result of this hopelessness. I have had tremendous success in eliminating depression with Rapid Resolution Therapy.
A recent case of a 54-year old man comes to mind. He had suffered from severe depression for most of his life. He had been on many medications with little or no relief of his symptoms. He had been hospitalized at least twice and was giving up hope on ever feeling better. After just one session of Rapid Resolution Therapy he walked out of my office stating that "he had never felt this good in his entire life". He reported later that he was a "changed man". His depression had lifted and he had a new outlook on life. How could this be? I believe that depression (for many) is the result of the mind becoming "stuck" responding to emotional impressions left by traumatic or disturbing experiences.
Usually there is associated anger, shame, guilt, or frozen grief that accompanies the depression (or causes it in the first place). These emotions drain the body and prevent the mind from maintenance, repair, and natural healing. In other words, the mind and body are in a constant state of emergency and all vital resources are diverted to prepare the mind and body for survival. This natural response to a perceived threat is meant to be temporary, as it is in nature. In the case of depression, the mind and body remain in this emergency state for months or even years. With Rapid Resolution Therapy, the mind is updated and adjusted so that it can return to it's natural state. Once it has returned to this natural state it can move forward towards what is possible and beneficial. Natural healing, maintenance, and repair begins immediately and the persons "symptoms" disappear. The same immediate results are found with anxiety and panic as well. Relief is possible and available without painful suffering and without medication!
Dr. John Smith, Ph.D, LCSW, is a Certified Practitioner in Rapid Resolution Therapy. He maintains a private practice in the Los Angeles area, and he is also a professor of alcohol and drug counseling at Mt. San Antonio College in Walnut, CA.
You can visit Dr. Smith on his website at, or feel free to call him at 626-859-2696

Monday, November 5, 2012

Connelly's Rapid Grief Resolution: The Art of Transforming Traumatic Grief

By Melinda Paige, Ed.S, LMHC, NCC
Master Certified Practitioner, Rapid Resolution Therapy
Life experiences affect people, more specifically their minds, in both positive and negative ways. Sometimes the effect is momentary, but more often than not the effect continues even though the experience is no longer happening. While the majority of the human mind works well, a negative experience can affect a small facet of mind so that we think, feel or act in ways that are not in our best interest. Rapid Resolution Therapy clears this aspect of mind gently and painlessly. Negative emotions are replaced with energy and peace, and problematic behavioral patterns are eliminated. One such life experience is the death of a loved one. Rapid Resolution Therapy also specifically targets and eliminates the ongoing pain from traumatic grief.
The death of a loved one is painful for almost everyone. For some people, though, this normal grief reaction becomes much more functionally debilitating. While normal grief responses gradually decrease, those of "frozen" or traumatic grief may persist. The following list includes common symptoms of "frozen" grief: intense longing for the deceased, deep and prolonged sadness, guilt or remorse, numbness or detachment, bitterness and resentment, withdrawing from social activities and a sense of meaninglessness and/or alienation. An individual may also be unaware that they are experiencing traumatic grief and may report, instead, feeling numb, detached, bitter or resentful without consciously realizing the cause of these sensations.
According to Dr. Connelly, grief develops into complex or "frozen" grief for a variety of reasons such as the following: a belief that the death should have been prevented, unresolved anger or guilt involving the deceased, the death was shocking, sudden and/or unexpected, the death involved suicide or violence, the death was slow and painful creating multiple traumatic impressions, or the death of a child. Key skills underlying traumatic grief resolution suggested by Connelly include pinpointing and eliminating each factor contributing to the traumatic grief response, deepening and accelerating the process of natural adaptation and acclimation, and eliminating painful emotions without encouraging abreaction.
Traditional grief counseling is based on the belief that painful and sad feelings need to be experiencedeven more than they have been in order to finally be released. Psychotherapy done this way causes people to experience unnecessary pain and suffering. In contrast, Rapid Resolution Therapy clears traumatic grief by eliminating conflicts and other obstacles and impediments to acclimation quickly and painlessly. The process of natural adaptation is accelerated as there is a natural tendency among all life to adapt to environmental change.
For example, Dr. Connelly states that if bees travel to a certain field to find nectar and the field is destroyed, the bees naturally adapt by seeking alternative resources elsewhere. Similarly, if its light source is blocked, the tree will grow in another direction to reach the sunlight. Humans have the same life source within us inspiring us to move toward solution and reach for the light. Dr. Connelly's Rapid Grief Resolution identifies and accelerates the process of natural adaptation already underway within us. By engaging the subconscious mind and eliminating the ongoing influence from traumatic grief, blocked energy is released, healing takes place and desired change is automatic and lasting.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Practitioner Heals Through RRT!

Yes-Rapid Resolution Therapy was developed by Dr. Jon Connelly, a clinical social worker, his book "Life Changing Conversations" or the cleartrauma website will give you a more informed view of this therapy which involves use of hypnotic techniques in many cases. Some promising research was presented at the US Psychiatric and Mental Health Congress last year and a multi-site study with larger scope involving certified practitioners in this approach is currently underway. Perhaps since RRT was developed by a busy social worker, the value or interest in doing the research has only come in the last few years--as more therapists are being trained and the approach is more standardized.  

While I have been trained in and utilizing CBT and DBT for years, I personally find RRT most effective in treating panic disorder and intrusive emotions and memories tied to traumatic experiences, as my patients have reported a decrease in their symptoms, such as reduction in emotional reactivity, nightmares, flashbacks and improved functioning in fewer sessions. I've trained in this RRT approach since 1993, and have never seen or heard of this approach being harmful. There are numerous single case studies and hours of video and audio recordings of sessions utilized for training mental health professionals. So if there's a researcher interested in understanding more about RRT and making a contribution to the literature, I believe their efforts would help many!  

- Elizabeth A. Michas, Ph.D., Certified Master Practitioner, Fort Walton Beach, FL