Workshop ‘Working with angry modes’

See agenda for the course dates, locations and the registration form.

Many therapists find that the most challenging situations in the clinical setting arise when the patient is angry.
The patient is irritable and refuses, with increasing frustration, to carry out the exercises suggested by the therapist. Or the patient suddenly explodes in a fit of rage for no apparent, direct reason, throwing out all the injustice that he or she experiences. The patient becomes threateningly aggressive when he or she feels that the therapist isn’t behaving respectfully enough. Sometimes the aggression and anger may be somewhat masked, and the patient behaves condescendingly and disparagingly.
Therapists can react very differently to such forms of anger. Some therapists find dealing with anger so difficult that they purposely avoid situations where the patient may become dissatisfied, irritated or angry. Angry patients can also evoke feelings of fear, inadequacy or failure within the therapist, which causes the therapist to feel fearful, insecure or maybe angry as well.


This training teaches the participants, first and foremost, to differentiate properly between the various types of anger. The principal question is, therefore, ‘from which mode does the patient display this anger?’. Over the course of two days, participants will learn to work more effectively with these angry modes through the use of specific methods and techniques. The aim of this course is that by the end of the two days participants are better able to deal with anger within the therapeutic relationship.
With this aim in mind, this course is diverse and interactive in nature; short introductions followed by demonstrations through role play or DVD-clips, after which participants can practice with the methods and techniques shown in small groups.
Topics which will be dealt with include:

  • Angry Protector, Bully and Attack mode, Self-aggrandiser, Angry Child mode, Enraged Child mode, Angry Punitive Parent, and Healthy Adult anger;
  • Emphatic confrontation, setting limits, imagery rescripting, chairwork, therapeutic relationship

Remco van der Wijngaart