The NeuroAffective Relational Model (NARM™) for Healing Developmental Trauma
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september, 2020

The NeuroAffective Relational Model (NARM™) for Healing Developmental TraumaCurrent Practitioner Training - September 2020 till February 2022 Event TagsNL

Event Details



Course Description

The NeuroAffective Relational Model (NARM™) is an advanced clinical training for mental health and somatic practitioners who work with developmental trauma.  NARM addresses relational and attachment traumaby working with early, unconscious patterns of disconnection that deeply affect our identity, emotions, physiology, behavior and relationships.  Integrating a psychodynamicand body centeredapproach, NARM offers a comprehensive theoretical and clinical model for working with developmental trauma.

NARM draws on psychodynamic models such as attachment and object relations theory, and somatic and character structure approaches, in addressing the link between psychological issues and the body.  Working relationally in the present moment, and within a context of interpersonal neurobiology, NARM offers a new approach of working relationally that is a resource-oriented, non-regressive, non-cathartic, and ultimately non-pathologizing model. Grounded in what NARM calls somatic mindfulness, NARM is influenced by a non-western orientation to the nature of the identity. Learning how to work simultaneously with these diverse elements represents a radical shift that has profound clinical implications for healing complex trauma and supporting personal and relational growth.


Course Objectives

In the NARM Practitioner Training you will learn:

    • The different skills needed to work with developmental versus shock trauma; when and why shock trauma interventions may be contraindicated in working with developmental trauma.
    • How to address the complex interplay between nervous system dysregulation and identity distortions, such as toxic shame and guilt, low self-esteem, chronic self-judgment, and other psychobiological symptoms.
    • How to work moment-by-moment with early adaptive survival styles that, while once life-saving, distort clients’ current life experience.
    • When to work ‘bottom-up’, when to work ‘top-down’, and how to work with both simultaneously to meet the special challenges of developmental trauma.
    • How to support clients with a mindful and progressive process of disidentification from identity distortions.
    • A new, coherent theory for working with affect and emotions, which aims to support their psychobiological completion.


Course Structure

The NARM Practitioner Training consists of 120 contact hours divided into 4 live modules. The 4 live modules will be held for a total of 20 days over the 2-year period of the training. The live modules are typically spaced 4 – 6 months apart, or 2 per year, to allow time for continued study, practice, peer meetings, and the webinars, in support of greater integration of the NARM clinical approach.

Supplementary learning opportunities include: study and practice groups, individual and group consultation, individual NARM sessions, access to library of demonstration videos, and other learning intensives.


Teaching Methods

All modules include a combination of 2 complimentary instruction approaches:

  1. Didactic and theoretical learning: including lecture, question and answer periods, class-wide discussion, case consultation, and deconstruction of live-demonstrations and videos.
  2. Experiential learning: including self-inquiry exercises, small group activities, role-plays, active coaching and guided skill practice.


2-Year NARM Practitioner Training Curriculum Topic Overview

The order of content may be subject to change.


Module 1

    • NARM Theoretical Orientation
    • Differentiating Interventions for working with Shock vs. Developmental Trauma
    • Working with Top-Down and Bottom-Up Integrative Approach
    • NARM Organizing Principles
    • Overview of 5 Adaptive Survival Styles
    • Distortions of Life Force Model
    • Distress and Healing Cycles
    • Pride and Shame-Based Identifications
    • Reframing Attachment and Attachment Loss
    • Foreclosure of Aspects of Self in Order to Protect Attachment Relationship
    • Introducing the 4 Pillars of NARM
    • NARM Pillar 1: Establishing a Therapeutic “Contract”
    • The NARM Relational Model
    • Connection Survival Style
    • Clients Whose Access to Sensations and Feelings are Compromised


    Module 2

    • Developmental Process: Attachment & Separation-Individuation
    • The NARM Relational Model
    • NARM Pillar 2: Asking Exploratory Questions
    • Somatic Mindfulness
    • Attunement Survival Style
    • A New Orientation to Resourcing Clients
    • Dual Awareness: Working in Present Time with Developemental Themes
    • Agency as the Foundation for the Development of the Adult Self
    • NARM Pillar 4: Reflecting Psychobiological Shifts towards increasing connection
    • Autonomy Survival Style
    • A New Model for Working with Emotions
    • Primary vs Default Emotions
    • Working with Anger & Aggression
    • Working with Shame & Guilt


    Module 3

    • Trust Survival Style
    • Working with Anger & Aggression
    • Working with Shame & Guilt
    • Narcissism and Objectification of Self
    • Narcissistic vs Sadistic Abuse
    • NARM Pillar 3: Supporting Agency
    • Love-Sexuality Survival Style
    • The Psychobiological Process of Shame (“Shame as a Verb”, “Shame as a Process not a State”
    • Tracking Expansion & Contraction, Connection & Disconnection
    • “Drilling Down”: A Process of Challenging Assumptions & Clarifying Experience
    • Deconstruction of Experience (in the function of Disidentification)
    • NARM Languaging
    • Deepening Study into the Connection Survival Style Issues, Symptoms and Related Disorders
    • Integrating the Polyvagal Theory
    • Trait-Survival Style-Personality Disorder Continuum
    • Identifying Core Dilemma: Core Themes vs Survival Strategies (Behaviors, Symptoms, etc.)
    • Countertransference & the Traps of Goal-Oriented, Solution-Focused Psychotherapy


    Module 4

    • How to Develop a Working Hypothesis
    • Freeze & Intrapsychic Conflict
    • Self-Hatred & Self-Rejection
    • Splitting
    • An overview of NARM’s different orientation to working with personality disorders
    • Therapist’s Countertransference Acting-Out & Re-Enactment
    • Unmanaged Empathy and Therapist Efforting
    • The Interplay of the Survival Styles: Primary and Secondary Patterns
    • Survival Styles as they relate to Intimacy and Sexuality
    • Developing Capacity for Pleasure
    • Working with Survival Style Dynamics as they relate to Couples
    • Working with Identity
    • Addressing Identity from both a Psychological, Non-Western and Spiritual Perspective
    • Freedom from Personal History
    • Separation/Individuation: Abandonment/Loneliness to Aloneness to Freedom
    • Personal Freedom as a pre-requisite for Real Intimacy
    • Resiliency: Supporting the Capacity to Tolerate Increasing Complexity
    • Addressing the Physical Structure of the Adaptive Survival Styles
    • Working with the Social Engagement Channels: Eyes, Ears, Face and Touch
    • Integrating NARM Effectively Into Our Clinical Practice




Module 1:   September 23rd – 27th, 2020

Module 2:   March 17th – 21st, 2021

Module 3:   September 15th – 19th, 2021

Module 4: February 9th – 13th, 2022

The training will be taught in English.


For further information and booking, please click here



Year Around Event (2020)


Kaap Doorn Conferentiecentrum

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