Attachment-Focused Integrative Reminiscence (Life Review)for Professionals A 16-Hour Experiential-Learning Continuing Education Course for Social Workers and Therapists
"I am honored - through the process of life-writing - to connect more deeply to my essential nature and to recognize again, the rightness of my work as a psychiatrist."
~ Kristen, NY
Life Writing is a structured method for resolving the emotional memories that silently impact every area of life: relationships, economics, physical health, psychological health, & everyday happiness.
Life Writing is a form of life review in which memories are recalled for the specific purpose of examining, appraising, and coming to terms with unresolved emotional experiences. What we know about this form of life review is that it increases coherence in the life story, which reflects increased coherence in the self – the “central mechanism by which health is created in mind, brain, body, and relationships” (Siegel, 2012, p. 336). While most in this field continue to explore and extol the relevance of this kind of reminiscence for reduced pathology, my research and work focus on the expedited human growth and flourishing that emerges. In a case study analysis of the impact of Life Writing on a middle-aged, urban, African-American woman (Sabir, 2014), in-depth pre- and post-intervention interviews showed her to demonstrate a clear increase in assertiveness, and more effective and empathic interactions with the people in her environment. These findings were recently replicated (March 2020, publications in process) in 15 additional young adult women. Increased coherence in the self, due to Life Writing, is why we can expect increased emotional availability and empathy in social workers and therapists following the Life Writing experience. To summarize, Life Writing is a form of life review in which memories are recalled, examined, appraised, and resolved, and has been shown to generate a wide range of mental and physical health benefits. This and similar interventions have been shown to reduce depression, anxiety, and perceived stress; to help resolve internal conflict, revise self-schemas, increase self-worth, disconfirm negative beliefs about the self; and to increase self-acceptance, self-esteem, and self-efficacy among other psychological health benefits. A substantial number of physical health benefits have also been attributed to integrative reminiscence including improved symptoms or arthritis, asthma, hypertension, diabetes, cardiac disease and faster recovery from cancer treatments.
"Aihi's ability to navigate and to integrate the personal with the professional is nothing short of magical." ~R. Leving, Owner, Mindful Elder-Care
This Life Writing course was developed by Dr. Myra Sabir from 1993-1996 as part of her master’s thesis in Theology and Human Development at Emory University. Following the master’s degree, she conducted the course for several years in public housing, churches, and homeless shelters in the Atlanta, GA area. The work eventually led to a Ph.D. in Human Development & Family Studies from Cornell University (special interest in attachment repair using narrative interventions) in 2004. Following the Ph.D., she conducted the course with older adults in Harlem, NY as her Post-Doctoral Research at the Cornell Institute for Translational Research on Aging in 2006. As an Assistant Dean in the College of Arts & Sciences at Cornell University, Dr. Sabir conducted the course for Cornell Students accepted to Cornell’s Pre-Freshman Summer Program and for Ithaca, NY area adult residents through Cornell’s Center for Transformative Action. More recently, she has conducted trainings in Life Writing for Ithaca College Gerontology Institute, New York Society on Aging, the Master of Social Work Graduate Student Association at Binghamton University, the Institute for Justice & Well-being at Binghamton University, and for the New York State Perinatal Association. Currently, as an Associate Professor in the Department of Human Development in the College of Community and Public Affairs at Binghamton University, she has conducted the course with homeless men, local single-mothers, undergraduate students, and others. Please read testimonials here.
To denature your own unresolved attachment-related memories.
To be more emotionally available to those you care for and those you care about.
To gain a true respect for the power of the life story in all human relations.
To enhance your skill at recognizing meaning in personal stories.
This is an 8-week LIVE course on Zoom. All sessions must be completed for CEU credit. Sessions can be made up if missed due to unforeseen circumstances. Teaching methods:
You will be part of a small group on Zoom. I will carefully and skillfully guide the group through the Life Writing process. I will take about 20 minutes at the start of each session to give instructions, then group members will write for about 40 minutes. I will then reconvene the group for discussion. Most participants prefer to purchase a copy of The Life Writing Workbook to revisit the material during the intervening week, but the workbook is not required. Groups are limited to 8 members each, so sign up early. Eight (8) members are required for a group to start. The sessions require my deep emotional presence, so maximizing my time as a form of self-care is essential. Fees:
1 Contact Hour = 50 Mins of instruction 16 hours/960 minutes/19 contact hours $320 = 16.84 per contact hour + $25.00 for CEU certificate
(CEU credit is available for LCSWs, LMSWs, LMFTs, & LMHCs in New York State only. Please contact us to discuss CEUs for your state or region.)