Introduction to Bias and Self-Understanding
We live in a culture that tends toward disconnection from oneself and others which leads to destructive division. How do we first awaken to ourselves more honestly? From there, we can awaken to another’s reality. Only in this personal awakening can we work toward lasting change. How do we help our clients do the same?
In this three-hour introduction, you will learn to recognize the unconscious threat/protection response and its result on Self, others, the world. Alfred Adler knew that underdeveloped courage leads to a lack of interest in others. Bringing consciousness to the impact of implicit bias used as a safeguarding tool can open up one’s world for increased courage, connection, understanding, and hope.
3 CE's - MFT Pending
Participants will be able to: describe basic neurology of threat/protection response.
Participants will be able to: use Adlerian early developmental concepts for greater self-discovery of one’s conditioned bias.
Participants will be able to: use simple somatic therapeutic techniques to explore the embodied bias.
Participants will be able to: use simple art therapeutic techniques to explore the unconscious bias.
Jana and Freeman (2016) remind us that all humankind is hardwired for bias as a survival mechanism. “If our brains could not, within a split second, tell the difference between an angry lion and harmless gazelle, we would not have lasted long as a species” (p. 8). The problem is, most of our bias is unconscious and tips off the nervous system that something is dangerous when possibly, it is not. Adler encourages us to be more courageous, to learn from where our bias comes and test out the theory on whether or not we are actually safer because of it. Adler (1996) writes, “Exaggerated sensitivity is an expression of the feeling of inferiority” (p. 121). He believed neurosis comes from the striving for superiority, perfection, and certainty. The narrowness of one’s world in the attempt to gain certainty is not conducive to social concern. In fact, we keep our world narrowed based upon our earliest developmental bias without knowing it. This presentation will provide education of the neurology of implicit bias and a greater awareness of one’s own stumbling blocks to social interest.
Adler, A., (1996), Social interest: A challenge to mankind. New York, New York: Capricorn Books.
Jana, T. & Freeman, M., (2016), Overcoming Bias: Building authentic relationships across differences. Oakland, CA: Berrett-Koehler Publishers.
Laure Schwartz graduated from Adler in 2016. She and her husband started The Healing House of Saint Paul in May 2010 where she works as a therapist integrating body, mind, and spirit. She is trained as a psychotherapist, spiritual director, and somatic therapist. Her emphasis and therapeutic lens include healing developmental attachment trauma and releasing the habitual threat/protection response stored in the body. To learn more: www.healinghousesaintpaul.org
Kristin Kane, MA, LMFT, ATR-BC is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT) and Board-Certified Registered Art Therapist (ATR-BC). Kristin completed her master’s degree in Adlerian Counseling and Psychotherapy with an emphasis in Marriage and Family Therapy and Art Therapy at Adler Graduate School in 2013. In addition, Kristin is an adjunct faculty member at Adler Graduate School in the Art Therapy department. Kristin is trained in both EMDR and Adaptive Internal Relational (AIR) Network Therapy and enjoys facilitating healing and change by way of creativity engagement through an neuroscience and trauma informed lens.