8 Reviews ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Understanding, Reducing and Transforming Shame

led by Bret Lyon, Sheila Rubin
3 days Webinar
🕐 Based on London timezone 🕐
4 October 2024 from 15:00 to 19:00
5 October 2024 from 15:00 to 19:00
6 October 2024 from 15:00 to 19:00
🕐 London Timezone 🕐
🪙 12 CPD/CE credits included in the price, no extra fees! 🪙
Whether you practice in the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, or any other country, our credits are valid for all the organizations. (Read more). Please note that the CPD/CE credits will be available 15 days after the event has ended.

Shame is perhaps the most painful of all emotions. It is at the root of the inner critic, perfectionism, depression, eating disorders and addiction. It binds with other emotions, such as anger, fear and grief, so that it’s often hard to detect. Curiosity is the opposite of shame. In this workshop, you will learn to help clients repair the impact of toxic shame in a way that is deep and long-lasting and actually begin to transform their shame into a powerful ally that will help them make better life decisions and live with more vitality and self-esteem.


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I am very glad I found this site!
I am very glad I found this site which offers trainings of various methods. I really look forward for more programs on trauma, somatic psychotherapy. Congratulations to the team for organising such events.
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Gayathri B. (from India )
I was very pleased with the event.
The speakers made a great job by telling about shame clearly and in an interesting way in a short time.
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Iris S. (from Finland)
Excellent Speaker and Very interesting Course.
The content was consistent with what I had learned during my psychotherapy and was a good refresher. I liked how the information was linked to the polyvagal theory and helped me to keep my previous knowledge up to date.
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Michelle M. (from United Kingdom)
Thank you, Brett and Sheila.
Brett and Sheila embody the truth in sharing the identification of shame, healing from shame, and how to embrace shame for a better purpose. Their natural and exuberant format is magnetic and draws the desire to learn easily out from their audience. Having personal experience with shame, I am grateful for the freedom their studies and educational content provide.
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Karen P. (from United States)
The Personal Interview and the additional video were excellent. Keep up the great work.
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Laura O. (from Ireland)
Have Sheila and Bret back!
Very Interesting! Bret and Sheila have a profound understanding of shame.
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Anonymous (from United States)
I enjoyed the webinar.
They are both extremely knowledgeable and communicate about the topic extremely well.
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Karen M. (from United States)
Thanks a lot for the informative webinar.
The Course was Very Interesting, the speaker was Excellent. Thanks a lot.
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Nicole B. (from Chile)


Credits included in the price, no extra fees! Recognised worldwide.


Exclusive Interview

Exclusive interview about the Speaker's personal and professional life


Bonus Videos

Weekly, before the event, we will add additional suggested videos


In-depth articles

Preparatory articles on this topic, written by our scientific board


Suggested books

A collection of books that will help you learn more about the topic



You will find the slides before the event, for better preparation

How do I join online?
This event will take place via Zoom. After purchasing, you will receive an e-mail with the instructions for how to join.
After the event you will have access to registration for unlimited time!
Learning outcomes
  • Understand the purpose of shame and how it gets distorted.
  • Learn the 4 reactions to shame.
  • Separate shame from other emotions.
  • Distinguish toxic shame from healthy shame.
  • Understand the qualities of healthy shame.
  • Keep optimal distance from shame through utilizing the 4 realms of experience.
  • Identify 4 ways of resourcing the client.
  • Understand how shame forms in childhood and takes residence in the body.
  • Identify 4 interventions that can lessen shame.
  • Describe 5 strategies to attain to and create rapport with a client.
  • Utilize resource memories to counter shame.
  • Identify 4 techniques for counter-shaming the client.
  • Create a new coherent narrative to replace the shame.
What does this Webinar consist of?

Day 1 is devoted to understanding and exploring what shame is: definitions, purpose, physiology (a combination of a primary emotion and a state of freeze), toxic VS healthy shame, relationship to trauma and reactions to shame. Includes exercises in small groups. Day 2 and 3 are devoted to working with shame: creating a counter-shaming environment, somatic resourcing, providing psychoeducation, transforming shame from toxic to healthy, guiding the client’s attention to keep optimal distance and leveling the playing field, balancing caring friend and trusted expert. Includes live demonstration sessions and exercises in small groups.

Who would benefit from this Webinar?

This online event is aimed at all psychologists and psychotherapists.

Discover the program of this Live Webinar
4 October 2024 from 15:00 to 19:00

Part 1: Understanding shame 

Shame heals through the restoration of the interpersonal bridge. Due to the special nature of shame, it cannot be worked with in the same way as the other primary emotions. Special care needs to be taken to work with shame in specific ways. Bret Lyon and Sheila Rubin have created this online workshop to help therapists understand how to avoid getting stuck in the shame freeze with clients or following them down the endless shame vortex. “We determine who we are through the eyes of those we love” (Bowlby).


Introductions: What participants want to get out of the webinar.


Definitions of Shame:

  • “Shame is the intensely painful feeling or experience of believing we are flawed and therefore unworthy of love and belonging.” (Brown)
  • “Shame is the breaking of the interpersonal bridge.” (Kaufman)
  • “Shame is being seen in a way you don’t want to be seen – the unbearable exposure of parts of Self one doesn’t like.” (Broucek)
  • “Shame is the sudden interruption of pleasure.” (Tompkins)
  • “Shame is a combination of an emotion and a freeze state.” (Lyon)
  • “Shame is feeling like an outsider – not belonging.”
  • “Shame is feeling defective. There’s something wrong with me.”
  • “Perfectionism” and “The Inner Critic” are manifestations of shame.


Exercise in breakout rooms: Exploring shame and pride.

Physiology of Shame:

  • Porges’ Polyvagal Theory – Shame, like trauma, is a parasympathetic shut down (freeze), produced when the sympathetic nervous system is too agitated (hyper-arousal).
  • Standing exercise.
  • “Shame is a primary emotion that binds with other emotions.” (Tompkins)


Purpose of Shame:

  • We are born with the capacity to feel shame.
  • Shame is designed to lower affect – especially the affect of anger.
  • Shame has a developmental purpose. It is an emergency/survival mechanism wired into our nervous system to protect us from getting into trouble with the tribe/family.
  • Shame is used by every society to socialize.

Healthy VS Toxic Shame:

  • Appropriate use of shame depends on degree, repetition and repair of the interpersonal bridge.

Shame Can Be Overt or Covert:

  • Covert shame is bypassed shame that the person is often unaware of.
  • Overt shame is often all-pervasive shame where the person sees themselves as flawed.
  • Overt and covert shame need to be worked with differently.
5 October 2024 from 15:00 to 19:00

Part 2: Working with Shame 

    • Create a Counter-Shaming Environment:
      • Create Safety, build Rapport.
      • Therapist needs to work on his or her own shame first.
      • Slow Things Down (Levine, Fosha, Johnson, Gendlin, Kurtz).
      • Unconditional positive regard (Rogers).
      • Cheerleading (Rubin).
      • Focusing – the client leads (Eugene Gendlin, Ann Cornell).
      • Presence, playfulness, attunement, affirmation, compassion, care, curiosity, empathy (Fosha).


      • Provide somatic exercises to help client learn to ground their energy through the feet and legs.
      • Provide somatic exercises to help client in moving energy down the body through hands on legs.
      • Provide psycho-education to normalize somatic sensations and energy in the body.
      • Explain reason to resource somatically when working with shame.
      • Help client experience a series of successes.
      • Therapist as resource – Help the client see you seeing them. Let them know they are held in your mind and heart (Fosha).

      Exercise in breakout rooms: Resourcing and counter-shaming.

      Guiding the Client’s Attention Chart


      Live Demonstration Session



6 October 2024 from 15:00 to 19:00

Part 3: Healing Shame

The structure of the day will be as follows:

Shame and Trauma:

  • Both involve a state of freeze due to dorsal vagal shutdown.
  • Shame can be developmental – many smaller incidents.
  • Shame like trauma evokes feelings of powerlessness.
  • Many incidents of trauma produce shame.
  • Slow it way down: Establish proper distance – Touch in, touch out.

Healing Shame (including the shame of trauma):

  • Repair the interpersonal bridge.
  • Client’s resistance becomes resourcing.
  • Resource – physically, emotionally, relationally.
  • Normalize – “You are not alone.” “You are not the only one.”
  • Educate – explain cognitively what shame is and how it effects the body. “There are good reasons you feel this way.”
  • Find Optimal Distance between cognitive and embodied states.
  • Pendulate gently between cognitive, embodied and imaginal realms.
  • Separate shame from other emotions.
  • Use objects or processes to externalize shame.
  • Help client experience a series of successes.
  • Help client share secrets.


Live Demonstration Session


Wrap-up: What did participants learn?  What are they taking with them?

  • Bibliography:
    • “Embracing Shame: How to Stop Resisting Shame and Transform It into a Powerful Ally”, Bret Lyon and Sheila Rubin;
    • “Shame: The Power of Caring”, Gershen Kaufman;
    • “Waking the Tiger”, Peter Levine;
    • “Shame and Pride”, Donald Nathanson.
Bret Lyon
Bret Lyon

Bret Lyon, PhD, SEP is a founder and co-director of the Center for Healing Shame, and co-creator of the Healing Shame–Lyon/Rubin Method. Through their popular workshops, he and his wife, Sheila Rubin, have taught thousands of psychotherapists, coaches, and other helping professionals across the world how to more effectively identify and work with shame. Bret also writes regularly for Psychology Today. Bret holds doctorates in both psychology and drama and, in a past life, has taught at Tufts University, Pomona College, and the American Academy of Dramatic Arts, as well as writing and directing plays in regional theater and off-off Broadway.

Sheila Rubin
Sheila Rubin

Sheila Rubin is a Marriage and Family Therapist, a Registered Drama Therapist and Board-Certified trainer with her private practice in Berkeley. She is co-creator and co-director for the Center for Healing Shame, a CE provider to teach therapists and helping professionals how to work with shame. She has traveled teaching healing shame workshops to the US and Canada. She has taught at CIIS and JFK as well as been in private practice. Her teaching and writing have been featured in 6 chapters and many articles. She is the co-author, together with her husband, Bret Lyon, of the paradigm shifting book “Embracing Shame, How to Stop Resisting Shame and Turn it into a Powerful Ally”, published by Sounds True Publishers.

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by Bret Lyon and Sheila Rubin
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🪙 12 CPD/CE credits included in the price, no extra fees! 🪙
Whether you practice in the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, or any other country, our credits are valid for all the organizations. (Read more). Please note that the CPD/CE credits will be available 15 days after the event has ended.


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Prices go up when the timer hits zero

The dynamics of shame, its evolutionary purpose and how it can be transformed. How to understand and work with the most powerful and mysterious of emotions.


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