Upcoming Courses

Pre-Conference Institute Psychodynamics of Internal Family Systems

Richard Schwartz, PhD

March 26, 2015 | Boston, MA | The Fairmont Copley Plaza Hotel

Both Internal Family Systems (IFS) and Psychodynamic Psychotherapy focus on the internal registering of early-on traumatogenic experiences within the child’s developing mind. Both treatment approaches deeply appreciate the dysfunctional impact these inner schemas will have on how subsequent experiences are then interpreted and organized; furthermore, both schools of thought contend that individuals who have suffered at the hands of their parents will continue to enact their unresolved childhood dramas throughout life – until they have had an opportunity to process and integrate the unmastered relational experiences that have given rise to their maladaptive ways of acting, reacting, and interacting.


Both IFS and Psychodynamic Psychotherapy are “depth approaches” that offer such an opportunity. Whereas Psychodynamic Psychotherapy focuses on the gradual and spontaneous emergence of insight into the unconscious conflicts and psychodynamics that have created the internal tensions that are interfering with actualization of the patient’s potential, IFS – while striving to achieve the same therapeutic goal – takes a somewhat divergent path. IFS is a more directive and focused method of treatment that prompts patients to delve into the psychodynamics of their interior world, where their inner resistances can then be disarmed, the exiled parts of the Self accessed, and competing internal “voices” categorized into discrete subpersonalities.


With curiosity and compassion, IFS therapist and patient can then work collaboratively to facilitate development of a more harmonious relationship between and amongst the various dissociated and conflictual “parts” of the Self, the ultimate goal being the promotion of integration, transformation, healing, and empowerment.

For more information and to register, please click here

The Lawrence E. Lifson, MD, Psychotherapy Conference: Psychotherapy – 2015, for more information and to register, please click here.

This course is designed so that participants will be able to:

1. to explain the similarities between IFS and Psychodynamic Psychotherapy;

2. to describe the differences between IFS and Psychodynamic Psychotherapy;

3. to speak to the ways in which IFS conceptualizes the internal recording of early-on traumatogenic experiences;

4. to discuss the roles of managers, exiles, and firefighters in the patient’s psychic economy;

5. to understand the ways in which IFS promotes psychic health, integration, and empowerment.

Additional Information

8:15 am – Registration
8:45 am – Welcome/Introduction, Martha Stark, MD
12:30-1:45 pm – Lunch (on your own)
5:00 pm – Adjourn

Beth Israel Deaconess Department of Psychiatry Foundation, Inc./Contact Hours: 6