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JUNE 24 - 26, 2021 / WORLDWIDE




3.30 - 5.00


Imagine Now!

with Eshkol Rafaeli and Offer Maurer

  • The schema mode model (Rafaeli, Bernstein, & Young, 2011; Young, Klosko & Weishaar, 2003), originally developed for the treatment of personality disorders, is gradually proving itself to be distinctly suited to address the vexing problems faced by individuals who suffer from various Axis-I disorders as well. Disorders such as depression, social anxiety, eating disorders, PTSD, and OCD are often highly comorbid with each other and with personality disorders, a fact which helps explain why even state-of-the-art methods for their treatment often have less-than-desirable effects. Indeed, the complexity of problems, the interpersonal dysfunction that often accompanies them, and the difficulty forming trusting and collaborative bonds with the therapist often leave individuals with primary Axis-I disorders in great distress. 

    The schema therapy model, and particularly its recent developments which emphasize the role of modes, explicitly addresses schemas (and associated core beliefs), emotions, behaviors, and interpersonal difficulties, with the therapeutic relationship as the primary vehicle for change, make it highly suitable to target the entrenched belief systems and high levels of avoidance characteristic of both personality disorders and many axis-I disorders.

    In this presentation, we will discuss and demonstrate techniques drawn from two research-based interventions: one focused on anxiety, the other focused on preparing couples for a major life transition (the birth of a first child). Both interventions are inspired by schema therapy and incorporate imagery methods and cognitive behavioral techniques. The anxiety-focused intervention (Prinz, Lutz, Bar-Kalifa & Rafaeli, 2016) has been successfully tested in a recently-published open trial with a sample of test anxiety patients (Prinz, Bar-Kalifa, Rafaeli, Sened, & Lutz, 2019) and both interventions continue to be investigated and to provide exciting psychophysiological insights into the mechanisms of imagery work (e.g., Bar-Kalifa, Prinz, Atzil-Slonim, Rubel, Lutz, & Rafaeli, 2019). 

    Using examples from both interventions, we will discuss the use of imagery focused on current-life and on the future (Maurer & Rafaeli, in press, in Heath & Startup’s upcoming Creative Methods in Schema Therapy: Advances and Innovation in Clinical Practice; Routledge), which we implement either in-person or remotely.  

    Learning outcomes: 

  • 1. Development of insight into the use of imagery focused on current-life and on the future.
  • 2. Consideration of using these methods in-person vs. remotely.

About the Presenters

Eshkol Rafaeli

Is a professor of clinical psychology and the former director of clinical training in the psychology department and neuroscience center at Bar-Ilan University, Israel, where he directs the Affect and Relationships Lab. Prior to joining BIU, the lab and Eshkol were at Barnard College, Columbia University, where Eshkol continues to serve as a research scientist. Eshkol and his students study two key components of daily life – our affect and our relationships. In projects funded by the NIMH, ISF, BSF, the Templeton Foundation, the Hope & Optimism Initiative, and others, they’ve been examining the nature and structure of moods and emotions in the daily lives of both distressed and non-distressed individuals and couples. they look at the attempts partners make to make sense of each other’s thoughts, feelings, and needs, as well as at the interplay of good (supportive) and bad (hindering) actions that happen in the life of any couple. They also conduct psychotherapy/intervention studies, and are interested in the process and outcome of such interventions. He is a co-founder of the Israeli Institute for Schema Therapy, the co-author (together with David Bernstein and Jeffrey Young) of the 2010 Routledge book on Distinctive Features of Schema Therapy, and he continues to be very interested in using, teaching, supervising and researching this approach. 

Offer Maurer

Is a clinical psychologist, the founding director of 'The New Wave in Psychotherapy Program' at the Interdisciplinary Centre, Hertzliya. He is also the co-founder of the Israeli Institute for Schema Therapy and the former Chairperson of the Israeli Association for Relational Psychoanalysis and Psychotherapy. A guest lecturer at various programs both in Israel and abroad. Works in private practice as a Schema-Therapy-inspired Life Coach in New York City. His current writing attempts at theoretically bridging relational conceptualizations of self-multiplicity and experience-based clinical interventions in the spirit of Schema Therapy for severe personality disorders. A chapter he co-wrote with Rafaeli & Thoma titled ‘Working with Modes in Schema Therapy’ appeared in the book ‘Engaging Emotion in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy: Experiential Techniques for Promoting Lasting Change’ (Guilford Press).

CANCELLATION POLICY: No cancellation is possible once registered. Access to all sessions will be available after the summit ends to registered participants. For questions, please contact the ISST Office at: OFFICE

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Stockholm, Sweden


Coimbra, Portugal


Berlin, Germany


New York, USA


Istanbul, Turkey


Vienna, Austria

Why Schema Therapy?

Schema therapy has been extensively researched to effectively treat a wide variety of typically treatment resistant conditions, including Borderline Personality Disorder and Narcissistic Personality Disorder. Read our summary of the latest research comparing the dramatic results of schema therapy compared to other standard models of psychotherapy.

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