The Theory and Practice of the Flash Technique
Course: EMDR Bridging the Gap: From Protocol to Practice
Instructor: Sik-Lam Wong, PhD, LMFT
Approved for 5.0 Hours of CE Credit
Fulfills Requirements for Psycholgists, MFTs, LCSWs, and Licensed Professional Counselors.
This course is designed for Full and Part-Time Private Practitioners, and Full and Part-Time Agency Employees
High Resolution Online Streaming Video
The Flash Technique was developed by Phil Manfield in 2017 as part of the Preparation Phase (Phase 2) of EMDR with the intention of quickly reducing the client’s emotional response to traumatic memory so EMDR can proceed. It was an extreme form of paired titration used in EMDR, developed by Krystyna Kinowski in 2003. While in Kinowski’s paired titration the client would focus on a resource and then briefly recall the disturbing memory, in the original version of Flash Technique, the client would focus on a resource and recall the disturbing memory so briefly that the client would not see or feel the disturbing memory. Currently, clients doing the Flash Technique will only need to identify the disturbing memory without dwelling on it and just to focus on something that is pleasant and engaging. The client would do bilateral stimulation such as eye movement or alternating tapping, and blink when prompted by the therapist, all without any attempt to recall the memory.
The Flash Technique is a simple protocol and a user-friendly protocol in that can be learned in a few hours. It is also easy to use in clinical practice. Even master-level social work and counseling students can use it effectively to help their clients to process their disturbing memories. It is also user-friendly for clients in that they do not have to dwell on the details of the trauma during processing. FT is being used not only in the counseling rooms worldwide, but also in populations distressed by trauma such as refugees and the homeless.
This course on the Flash Technique (FT) draws from the speaker’s own practice and research on FT, working with homeless substance abusers and teaching master-level social work students to do trauma work with FT online. It will also cover the theory of FT, developed by the speaker, using well-accepted working memory research and fMRI data from neuroscience. This course will provide the new FT therapist with a proven script for immediate use in the counseling room. It will also provide the more experienced FT therapist with the theoretical foundation for the practice of the Flash Technique.
In this course, we start with an overview of trauma and a review of the theory and practice of FT as part of the Preparation Phase (Phase 2) of EMDR. We then discuss the use of positive engaging focus (PEF) in the Flash technique as well as obstacles preventing the successful use of FT, such as feeder memories and blocking beliefs, and we address ways to get around those obstacles. We will also discuss the use of FT for highly traumatized individuals, using calming and experiential PEFs. In addition, we will touch on special situations such as the use of FT for processing of guilt and shame issues and the use of FT to support victims of natural disasters. There will also be an in-depth discussion of the theory for FT. The didactics will be illustrated with live and recorded demonstrations of volunteers processing their disturbing memories with FT. There will be two practicums, and we will have ample time for discussion and Q & A.
Goals & Objectives:
At the conclusion of this activity, participants will be able to:
- Explain the basic procedure of FT.
- Name at least three examples of a positive engaging focus, typically used in FT
- Name the two threat detection systems in the brain.
- Identify two possible changes in the traumatized brain.
- Explain the difference between high-intensity and low-intensity trauma intervention
- Explain the difference in approach for using FT for individual and group therapy.