A Special Experience - A Special Event

 A Special Experience – A Special Event


    Just a few months ago, I sat in a theatre outside Amsterdam and listened spell bound as colleagues like Marco Iacoboni, one of the foremost experts on the mirror neurons that spark empathy,  and others such as Dan Siegel and neuroscientist Jim Coan fascinated the audience with stories, studies and scintillating summaries of science. Not only was this fascinating, but the science I was hearing was useful!  Doors were constantly opening in my mind. I was learning so much that I could take back into my therapy sessions with my clients, things that helped me understand my clients inner worlds and the dramas they are caught in. 

I found myself thinking, this is what integrating science and psychotherapy really looks like, not academics lecturing therapists about paying attention to dull random control trials of therapy, but this bright circus of ideas that inspires me and makes me glad to be in the people helping profession. My next thought was -  How come I have been part of making this happen three times now in the Netherlands, but never in North America?

Enter my wonderful colleague, Chris Cambas, the CEO of National Marriage Seminars, who I had invited to the conference. His response to my question was simply – “So let’s do it in the fall of 2016. Let’s put it on in the nation’s capital – Washington DC.” Just a few hundred  hours of planning later, it was all set. And now, all that is left is for you to come and join us.

I am a romantic at heart, so my hopes for this conference are very high. I admit that, as an experienced clinician, I am bored by formal academic conferences and lists of studies. I admit that I am often also dismayed by more pop psychology conferences where kudos goes to the most charismatic marketer of the ‘latest’ intervention, which you then realize isn’t new at all. This conference is designed to offer you cutting edge science that is relevant to your everyday practice and your life, as well as presentations from an amazing group of clinicians who use up-to-date science to shape their practice. We have also deliberately included individual, couple and family experts.

The real reason to actively use science in our everyday practice is, not to try to impress insurance companies, but because it turns us on, shows us new horizons; because it helps us make sense of the human pain and chaos that clinicians face daily, a chaos that does not translate into nice simple categories or nice simple one-dimensional solutions. This is also the way to grow the field of psychotherapy and hold onto the excitement of being in the best profession in the world – the one that grows people.

So come! Bring your energy, your wisdom, your questions and your smiling face. See you there everyone !

Dr.Sue Johnson



Dr. Sue Johnson and Chris Cambas, CEO, National Marriage Seminars in Amsterdam

Dr. Sue Johnson and Chris Cambas, CEO, National Marriage Seminars in Amsterdam