Workshop Announcement

February 12th, 2012

On February 17th through the 19th, I will be organizing a workshop with Bill Bowen on “Embodiment in Psychotherapy.”



On Friday night there will be a free lecture from 7:00-8:30:

“The Process of Becoming Embodied for Client and Therapist”This lecture will discuss how the quality of both client and therapist being embodied is central to the process of somatic psychotherapy. It will discuss how the therapist’s sense of embodiment affects the quality of connection, the assessment process, and his or her ability to help the client become more mindful and embodied, as well.

Please come with your body and enjoy this experiential and didactic evening with me.

If you are interested in attending this lecture you can register with me:




On Saturday, we will be hosting a full day workshop (9:30AM to 5:00PM):

“Being Embodied as Therapist”Going deeper into the theme of “therapist embodiment,” this workshop will examine how the quality of embodied connection and interaction between client and therapist is essential in the process of somatic psychotherapy. The workshop will explore the concepts of awareness and presence from a somatic perspective. The workshop will focus on how to work with “somatic resonance” between client and therapist. It will explore ways for the therapist to strengthen his or her ability to stay physically resourced and present during the therapeutic process.  The workshop will include didactic and experiential exercises for participants to use to examine their own process and develop new perspectives and skills.

For more information or to register for this workshop: Please contact me at, or go to

Cost: $150,  6 CE’S available




Sunday’s workshop (also from 9:30AM to 5:00PM) will be:

“Embodiment, the Fundamental Somatic Resource: Supporting Clients in Becoming Embodied”This workshop will focus on supporting a client in developing a greater sense of somatic awareness and an increased capacity to be present in his or her body as part of the therapeutic process. The workshop will explore how to introduce the practice of somatic awareness to new clients. It will explore ways to support clients who are disembodied or dissociated with increasing their ability to be more somatic ally awareness. It will examine ways introduce new somatic resources designed to assist clients towards change. This workshop will also incorporate experiential exercises as part of the learning process.

For more information or to register for this workshop: Please contact me at, or go to

Cost: $150,  6 CE’S available


Both workshops and the lecture will be help at the Rosen Center, 825 Bancroft Way, Berkeley, CA 94710


BILL BOWEN, is a body psychotherapist in private practice in Portland, Oregon. He is the founder and director of Psycho-Physical Therapy. His unique therapeutic method has evolved from his 35 years of experience working with the creative process, body therapy, somatic psychology and spirituality.

Central to this work is the exploration of the mind/body interface, the establishment of centering presence, and helping clients re-establish optimal psycho-physical resources necessary to live peaceful and integrated lives.

Bill was a co-founder, with Pat Ogden, of the Hakomi Integrative Somatics.

Bill was a founding member of the Northwest Coalition of Body-Psychotherapy.

Understanding Couples Therapy

February 5th, 2012

The first thing to keep in mind about understanding couples therapy is that all couples fight. John Gottman’s research shows us that the success of a relationship or marriage does not depend on the number of fights a couple has. Successful relationships depend on a couples’ ability to have more positive interactions than negative interactions and how they work with each other to manage their arguments.

One of the first steps in how work with couples is to help them realize and gain greater awareness of the “pattern” of their fights/arguments. For couples’ arguments tend to be repetitive in nature. So if you are having trouble arguing with your partner, you may notice that the “moves” of the fight are the same, it’s just the topic that changes.

When couples recognize that they have this pattern or “play book” that most their fights follow, they can then begin to discover how the pattern reinforces itself. It’s the tragedy of a struggling relationship; the attempts to solve the problem become the cause of the problem.

After gaining insight into the fight pattern itself, I then assist the couple in learning to recognize the deeper needs, beliefs, or pain driving the pattern. Once couple truly understands how they fight and what drives the fight, they know have the knowledge-power to do something about it.

This is the second phase of therapy, learning to turn towards each other and discuss what is really happening or needed without triggering the other into a defensive stance.

While couples are working on developing this understanding of their fights and learning the tools to change it, they need to simultaneously strengthen their positive feeling and behaviors towards each other, as well. Gottman’s research shows that successful couples have a positive to negative interaction ratio of greater than 6:1, while couples who ended up divorced or separated have a ration of less than 6:1. What this shows us is that while working on changing the fight pattern is important to create a safety and understanding; qualities like friendship, admiration, fondness, and respect for each other are equally important to the survival of the relationship.

Therefore, while half the focus of couples therapy is about understanding and working through what goes wrong, the other half has to do with really learning how to love each other in a much more impactful way.


Happy New Year!

January 10th, 2012

Happy New Year!

I am pleased to announce three new social media services beginning this year.
First of all welcome to my blog, “Improving Your Relationship: Communication Skills for Couples.” This blog will be dedicated to providing relational advise on communication skills, managing arguments, and enhancing love.

You may also view videos on relationship skills on my You Tube site at

Finally, for quotes and thoughts of the week please follow me on Twitter at @CraigToonder.


Craig Toonder, MFT

Page 8 of 8« First...45678