Affect Phobia Therapy: Building bridges, closeness and authenticity between therapist and client

Dr. Kristin Osborn, Psychologist

Explore the art of connecting with your client through manageable emotion


Download an outline

  • 3h of continuing education
  • 17 lessons that last from 5 to 15 minutes each
  • 1 certificate of achievement
  • 1 PowerPoint
  • 1 bibliography
  • 1 course evaluation
  • 4 months unlimited access
  • 7-day money back guarantee
  • 77% of participants who completed the satisfaction survey declare they would recommend this course to a colleague


Neuroscience, attachment and psychotherapy research indicate that the therapeutic alliance is at the heart of treatment. In this workshop, Dr. Osborn will present an overview of Affect Phobia Therapy (APT) and advanced training on how therapists can integrate their own internal process to strengthen the therapeutic alliance and more effectively time and deliver interventions. More specifically, she will explain how and why cultivating your own capacity for self-compassion, self-love and self-forgiveness will increase your awareness of your own emotional experience as a clinician. More importantly, she will explain how to use this information to more fully resonate with your clients and patients so they can experience true and significant change. When working with intergenerational trauma and other conditions it is common for therapists to experience anxiety that may or may not be related to their own experiences. It is therefore very important for them to be able to decipher why, and to know what to do when they are experiencing ‘in session’ anxiety, defenses or strong emotions. Even if clinicians are themselves in therapy or in supervision, they still need to learn the skills of working with their own emotions ‘in the moment’ so they can offer a reparative and therapeutic experience for their patient. Participants will learn how the non-verbal interplay can guide them when facing a client who is experiencing intense emotions or trauma reenactments. Participants will also learn how to cultivate self-compassion in anxiety-provoking moments so they can mindfully apply interventions and make therapeutic decisions while maintaining a bond with their client. By the end of this workshop, participants will also feel more comfortable being themselves ‘in session.’

About the expert

Picture of Kristin Osborn

Dr. Kristin A. R. Osborn, LMHC, LPCC is an internationally recognized psychotherapist, researcher, author and an Associate in Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School as well as a Clinical Instructor in the Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences at the UCLA David Geffen School of Medicine. She has trained over a thousand psychotherapists and mental health providers and is the founder of Certified APT™-Training (Affect Phobia Therapy), a rigorous evidence-based program that teaches how to assess and resolve affect phobias. She serves on the board of the Society for the Exploration and Integration of Psychotherapy. She is also a board member and President Emeritus of the International Experiential Dynamic Therapy Association. She has co-authored Paraverbal Communication in Psychotherapy: Beyond the Words. Additional information on other publications, talks, keynotes and workshops are available at

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Learning objectives

  1. Create a core conflict formulation, and decipher between inhibitory, defensive and adaptive affect
  2. Assess and resolve therapist affect phobia
  3. Cultivate compassion for yourself when your feel overwhelmed in session
  4. Maintain clinical focus when working with intense emotions

Learning material

A theoretical course illustrated with clinical examples. This course is composed of videos of 5 to 15 minutes each. The PowerPoint of the course to download.


  • PowerPoint
  • Introduction to Affect Phobia Therapy (APT)

  • 1. Presentation
  • 2. A little history
  • 3. Basics of Affect Phobia Therapy
  • Exploring APT Techniques and Therapeutic Foundations

  • 4. The Heller and Haynal research
  • 5. Paying attention to yourself
  • 6. The 10 sessions form
  • 7. The Venn Diagram of therapeutic relationship
  • 8. The triangles of person and conflict
  • 9. Creating a core conflict formulation
  • Enhancing Therapeutic Relationships and Intervention Strategies

  • 10. The working alliance
  • 11. Different interventions
  • 12. Receptive capacity and resolving a closeness phobia
  • 13. Therapists with affect phobias
  • 14. Being an explorer to help your patient
  • 15. Using the ATOS scale with ATP
  • 16. Conclusion
  • 17. Meeting with a patient
  • Bibliography

CE Credits

Download a certificate of successful completion.


This training is intended for mental health professionals.


  • 3h of continuing education
  • 17 lessons that last from 5 to 15 minutes each
  • 1 certificate of achievement
  • 1 PowerPoint
  • 1 bibliography
  • 1 course evaluation
  • 4 months unlimited access
  • 7-day money back guarantee

Legal notice

The courses offered by ASADIS are accredited by different professional organisations. In addition, ASADIS is approved by the Canadian Psychological Association to offer continuing education for psychologists. ASADIS maintains responsibility for the program.

The CPA’s approval of an individual, group, or organization as a CE Sponsor or Provider is restricted to the activities described in the approved application or annual report form. The CPA’s approval does not extend to any other CE activity the Sponsor or Provider might offer. In granting its approval, the CPA assumes no legal or financial obligations to Sponsors, Providers, or to those individuals who might participate in a Sponsor or Provider’s CE activities or programs. Further, responsibility for the content, provision, and delivery of any CE activity approved by the CPA remains that of the CE Sponsor or Provider. The CPA disclaims all legal liability associated with the content, provision, and delivery of the approved CE activity.

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