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Narrative Practices, Trauma and Embodiment: Evolving ideas in action

December 8, 2023 @ 1:00 pm - December 9, 2023 @ 5:00 pm

$115.00 – $200.00

“People are not passive recipients of trauma; they respond to trauma in the best way that they know how”.

Michael White, 2007, Toronto

Many present-day ideas about trauma make a direct link between trauma and psychological pain that can often lead therapists to incapacitating and pathologizing conclusions. “These understandings also lead to the construction of a fragile or, or vulnerable sense of self,” (White, 2005a, pp. 19-22). Therapy with traumatic experiences requires a skillful balance between re-visiting without re-traumatizing, re-living resiliency without the powerlessness, re-connecting with the body without slipping into fight, flight or freeze. This skillful balance can be better achieved with knowledges of narrative practice concepts and maps, understandings of the socio-cultural factors shaping the meaning of the event, and the brain-body ramifications of having been faced with an integrity threatening incident.

In this workshop Marie-Nathalie and Jim will present foundational narrative practice concepts that reconnect people with their preferred identities and examine when narrative practices benefit from additional ideas to address non-verbal ties to embodied reactions. They will address when it is helpful to discuss some aspect of the traumatic event and when it isn’t, and how to ensure the conversation is useful.

New findings in Interpersonal neurobiology (IPNB) and the fields of embodiment offer rich possibilities of expanding our narrative practices in ways that can empower people in more effective and lasting ways.  Pausing foundational narrative conversations to insert moments relying on IPNB knowledges and embodiment approaches can sometimes re-energize the re-authoring of preferred identities, and lead to more sustainable changes.

Participants will be introduced to:

  • Narrative practices assumptions as alternative, non-pathologizing understandings of trauma and distress.
  • A Rites of Passage map for the re-authoring of identity.
  • Story as a temporal map for detecting and measuring change
  • The absent, but implicit, because life is double storied.
  • Narrative conversations away from the problem.
  • The journey phase, betwixt and between.
  • Understandings of brain-body effects of traumatic events
  • Implications of embodied ties for therapeutic conversations
  • Discernment of clients’ expressions which suggest the importance of engaging in embodying work
  • Examples of embodying work possibilities
  • The concept of choice
  • Considerations for hypoarousal or hyperarousal issues.
  • Sustainability of preferred identity given the intensity of problem experiences

Certificate verifying 8 hours of participation completed will be awarded to each participant.



Friday, December 8, 2023 – 1 PM to 5:00 PM (US Central Time)

Saturday, December 9, 2023 – 1 PM to 5 PM (US Central Time)



SUPER Early Bird Fee: $150 (Register by August 1, 2023)

Early Bird Fee: $170.00 (Register between August 2 and November 1, 2023).

Regular Fee $200.00 (after November 2)

Student Fee: $115.00 (Must show proof of status with a student card if requested)



Full refund minus $30.00 cancellation fee until November 1, 2023)

50% refund between November 1 and December 7, 2023.

No refund  December 8, 2023 and thereafter.


NOTE: Zoom log-in information will be provided to the email you registered with close to the workshop dates.



Marie-Nathalie Beaudoin is the director of Skills for Kids, Parents, & Schools (SKIPS), and has a private consultation practice in California. She has been a pioneer in combining neurobiology, mindfulness and narrative therapy, and has written several key professional articles introducing original clinical practices, in Family Process, International Journal of Narrative Therapy & Community Work, and Journal of Systemic Therapies. In addition to co-editing, Collaborative therapy and neurobiology: Evolving practices in action (Beaudoin & Duvall, 2017), she is the author of popular books, such as The SKiLL-ionaire in every child: Boosting children’s socio-emotional skills using the latest in brain research (2010), written for parents, and Mindfulness in a busy world: Lowering barriers for youth & adults to cultivate focus, emotional peace & gratefulness (2021). Her work has been featured in AAMFT’s Family Therapy magazine, and the ASP professional video, Narrative therapy & neurobiology: Making changes stick in everyday lives (2013).  Marie-Nathalie has been practicing narrative therapy since the 1990s, and received a Shine a Light research grant to conduct the largest empirical study of the effectiveness of narrative practices.

With a background in improvisational theater, MarieNathalie is an acclaimed international speaker with frequent engagements in Europe, where she is renowned for her entertaining and thought provoking presentations.  In her free time, Marie-Nathalie enjoys spending time in nature with her husband and children.



Jim Duvall is Co-Director of JST Institute and Editor of Journal of Systemic Therapies. His experience as a therapist, educator, consultant, speaker, editor, and author spans over four decades. He has spent over 300 hours studying and collaborating with Michael White in training, writing and community projects. His work aims to integrate time-sensitive narrative practices within social justice principles.

In addition to numerous articles, book chapters, Jim co-authored a policy paper (Duvall, J., Young, K., Kays-Burden, A., 2012), No more, no less: Brief mental health services for children and youth. His co-authored book (Duvall & Béres, 2011), Innovations in narrative therapy: Connecting practice, training and research, WW Norton and Company is the first book to integrate training and research with narrative therapy resulting in compelling practice-based evidence. He is the co-editor (Beaudoin & Duvall, 2017) of Collaborative therapy and neurobiology: Evolving practices in action.

He has offered hundreds of workshops, courses, and keynote presentations with organizations throughout Canada, US, Australia, Asia and Europe. Other times Jim can be found playing music with his friends or boating on the Gulf of Mexico with his partner, family and their dog, Sailor.


December 8, 2023 @ 1:00 pm
December 9, 2023 @ 5:00 pm
$115.00 – $200.00
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