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Crucible® Clinical Workshops

Crucible® Neurobiological Therapy (CNT)
Intensive Workshop Series


This workshop is now complete for 2017.

The Crucible Neurobiological Therapy Workshop series offers new ways to treat highly troubled couples and individuals from dysfunctional backgrounds. It offers the first fully developed therapy based on the brain science of mind-mapping—the brain’s innate ability to make a mental map of another person’s mind.

Mind-mapping lets you intuit what other people are thinking and feeling, what they want, and what they are likely to do. Mind Mapping also lets you know yourself and understand your own feelings and motivations. It’s at the heart of self-awareness, introspection and how we come to understand ourselves.

Mind Mapping greatly determines how people act in relationships. Mind-mapping helps you create or improve good things like:

  • Intimacy and sex
  • Effective parenting
  • Effective leadership
  • Teaching and training
  • Empathy and compassion
  • Encouragement and emotional support
  • Pleasant surprise

Mind mapping also underlies the worst parts of relationships: People who repeatedly do cruel, unhelpful, disappointing and/or hurtful things succeed because of their mind-mapping ability--rather than their lack of it. This workshop offers new ways of addressing:

  • Lying and deception
  • Manipulation
  • Bullying
  • Emotional abuse
  • Extramarital affairs

Mind-mapping changes your view of relationships: It’s much easier to accept a dysfunctional relationship when you think your partner is socially inept or mind-blind. People who repeatedly do cruel, unhelpful, disappointing and/or hurtful things succeed because they have mind-mapping ability, not because they lack it. When you realize your partner is tracking your responses, mapping your mind, and using this against you, stuck relationships quickly reach critical mass for change.

Another critical piece involves recognizing mind-masking, the brain’s ability to ward off being mapped by someone else. Good mind-maskers can make you think they completely lack mind mapping ability. Understanding mind masking will completely change your view of your personal relationships. If you’re a therapist, it will change your picture of your cases too.

Crucible Neurobiological Therapy

Mind-mapping-based Crucible Neurobiological Therapy creates entirely different treatment dynamics and closes the loopholes clients escape through. People make difficult self-acknowledgements they would otherwise reject, and self-confrontations they would usually avoid, because the data stream and therapy process is unanticipated. These rapid developments de-escalate hostility and encourage positive brain plasticity in long-troubled couples.

Crucible Neurobiological Therapy also focuses on interpersonal neurobiology: the physiological processes of traumatic mind-to-mind contact. It is based on 12 years of clinical innovation and case study research using mind-mapping therapy with highly-troubled clients from around the world. The most complete description of Crucible Neurobiological Therapy is the book, Brain Talk: How Mind Mapping Brain Science Can Chance Your Life and Everyone in It by Dr. David Schnarch (2018, Sterling Publishers). The underlying brain science is also fully referenced there.

Traumatic mind-mapping. Crucible Neurobiological Therapy focuses on how traumatic mind-mapping profoundly impacts your brain. Traumatic mind mapping occurs when successfully mapping out someone else's mind blows your mind and impacts your brain. Repeated traumatic mind-mapping, especially during childhood, creates short-term and long-term negative brain impacts that surface as neurobiological problems (e.g., holes in autobiographical memory, gaps in mind-mapping ability, impaired cognitive and emotional functioning.)

Understanding traumatic mind mapping revolutionizes your picture of how emotional trauma and sexual abuse occurs. The vast majority of sexual abuse occurs via traumatic mind mapping rather than physical contact. Traumatic mind-mapping dramatically impacts therapists and clients alike. Every therapist sometimes gets "spaghetti brain" from upsetting realizations about clients or hearing their terrible experiences.

Brain-to-Brain Therapy. Crucible Neurobiological Therapy is designed to resolve the negative interpersonal neurobiological impacts of these and other subtle traumas. In CNT, the mind/brain of the therapist is a primary treatment tool. CNT is “brain to brain” therapy, involving intense mind-mapping between client and therapist throughout the therapy session.

Crucible Neurobiological Therapy Workshop Series

The Crucible Neurobiological Therapy workshop series gives you a functional understanding of brain science that can make you a better therapist. It shows you practical methods to harness interpersonal neurobiology through the clinical application of mind-mapping in therapy and daily life.

Right-brain learning. These workshops develop your clinical abilities to use mind mapping in therapy through extensive use of audio/video recordings, detailed case material, and personal application. These modalities maximize practical application and intuitive learning.

Four-Day Crucible Mind Mapping Therapy Workshop

The Four-day Crucible Mind Mapping Therapy Workshop teaches the rudiments of mind-mapping-based therapy, as applied to conventional therapy or Crucible Therapy (our unique differentiation-based therapy for couples, individuals and families). It shows you how to:

  • Introduce mind mapping into your psychotherapy sessions, and
  • Use it to accelerate treatment and enhance outcomes.
  • Break through couple’s emotional gridlock and collusive alliances.
  • Produce intensely intimate psychotherapy sessions.
  • Develop new pictures of what’s going on.

It covers critical topics like:

  • Who has mind mapping and who doesn’t?
  • Impact of troubled home-life on developing mind-mapping ability.
  • Introducing mind-mapping in sessions: best practices.
  • Using mind-mapping to analyze clients’ self-report and turn them into far-reaching insights and effective interventions.
  • Detecting client’s mind-mapping and mind-masking abilities.
  • Recognize traumatic mind-mapping in clients’ reported experiences and identify short and long term neurobiological impacts.
  • Impacts of repeated disgust reactions on autobiographical memory, mind mapping accuracy,
  • Become more resilient to traumatic mind-mapping during therapy sessions.
  • Empathy, antisocial empathy and compassion.
  • Childhood traumatic mind-mapping in likely-to-fail clients
Six-Day Crucible Neurobiological Therapy Intensive Workshop

The Six-Day Crucible Neurobiological Therapy Workshop focuses more specifically on the impacts of traumatic mind mapping. It teaches about (1) interpersonal neurobiological problems resulting from traumatic mind mapping and repeated involuntary disgust reactions, and (2) treatment of these problems through the methods of Crucible Neurobiological Therapy.

This six day program utilizes a complete emersion experience to facilitate intuitive learning and nuanced appreciation of brain function, and create a more transformative process for participants. The one goal of the CNT Therapy Workshop is for participants to learn enough to begin applying these methods in their current clinical practices.

The 2017 Intensive Workshop taught participants about:

  • Detecting subtle neurobiological shifts in clients’ brain function during psychotherapy sessions.
  • Recognizing traumatic mind mapping episodes and their impacts in clients
  • Types of interpersonal neurobiological problems and their symptoms
  • Basic CNT methods
    • Maintaining ongoing intense “brain-to-brain” contact with clients
    • Using visualization to resolve traumatic mind mapping experiences
    • Written mental dialogues by clients interacting with their antagonist
    • Dealing with antagonists in real life
  • In-session psychophysiological monitoring of clients and therapist

The 2018 Intensive Workshop taught participants about:

  • Identifying the interpersonal neurobiological impacts of traumatic mind mapping and repeated disgust reactions.
  • Becoming more resilient to experiencing traumatic mind mapping (“spaghetti brain”) in psychotherapy sessions.
  • Basic CNT methods
    • Using visualization to resolve traumatic mind mapping experiences
    • Deconstruct clients’ written mental dialogues and make productive written comments to clients about their written mental dialogues.
    • Handle common problems in working with clients' visualization and written materials.
  • Apply the methods of Crucible Neurobiological Therapy to yourself.


2019 Crucible Neurobiological Therapy Six Day Intensive Workshop #3
Resolving Emotional Dysregulation
& Inner Mental World Problems
November 11 - 16, 2019
9 am to 5 pm
(Concluding 1PM on the 16th)
Denver, Colorado

Presented by
Dr. David Schnarch

The #3 Intensive workshop will be offered in Ulm, Germany on May 25-30, 2020.
Click here for more information.

Register for the


Do you have clients who suffer from severe emotional crashes?
Are you interested in cutting-edge techniques for brain-changing therapy?
Do you treat clients who qualify for “borderline personality disorder” diagnosis?

Many therapists offer clients interpretations about parallels between their current problems and childhood experiences growing up. And it’s not too hard to find a therapist who can empathize or help you express your emotions. But how many therapists have the knowledge and skills to help clients effectively control their emotional meltdowns? How many clinicians know how to help emotionally-dead-looking people come alive? Do you?

This year’s Intensive Training offers whole new ways to help clients manage their emotional lives. While some emotions are the acme and epitome of human experience, they are often the bane of human existence. Many people find their emotions are not a rewarding experience or a kind of personal truth. Instead they are a torment.

However, the solution is not to feel less. Many other people, especially those who have been repeatedly traumatized, wish they could feel more. Loss of access to interoceptive (inner body) cues is a common result of interpersonal trauma. Both problems, overwhelming emotions and feelings, and emotional deadening are different types of emotional regulation difficulties; they are common results of repeated traumatic mind mapping.

Interpersonally-caused neurobiological impairments in emotional regulation don’t typically respond to insight-oriented talk therapy or emotion-focused treatments. However, by approaching overwhelming emotions and impoverished emotional reactions as dysregulated brain states, it is possible to help clients with both acute and long-term emotional regulation problems. This workshop offers time-tested brain-based interventions to make this possibility a reality for your clients.

This is our third six-day Intensive in the Crucible® Neurobiological Therapy Workshop Series. Workshop #1 focused on mind mapping based-therapy and impacts of traumatic mind mapping, Last year's workshop (#2) focused on neurobiological problems in cognitive functioning and the use of visualization and written mental dialogues in treatment. This year’s program focuses on interpersonal neurobiological problems in emotional dysregulation.

It’s not surprising Crucible® Neurobiological Therapy has evolved powerful methods of emotional self-regulation. That’s what the Crucible® 4 Points of Balance, our application of differentiation, is all about. Particularly the Second Point of Balance: Quiet Mind and Calm Heart. The ability to regulate your own emotions, lick your own emotional wounds, and stabilize your inner mental world. This year’s program shows how to put this into practice.


This workshop focuses on treating brain regressions. A brain regression is a shift in locus of control from your prefrontal cortex to the more primitive “emotional” and “survival” centers of your mammalian and reptilian brain. In this workshop you’ll learn about two main types of regressions:

Quicksand Reactions. No doubt you’ve had acute regressions: One moment you’re feeling fine and the next you’re being eaten alive by your feelings. Our clients call acute regressions “quicksand reactions” because of the emotional dysregulation and difficulty controlling their feelings and thoughts. Common reactions are overwhelming anxiety, acute dysphoria, worthlessness, or uncontrollable anger and rage.

Acute regressions are punctuated by loss of emotional control, both behaviorally and subjectively. For instance, many people have never had sex when they weren’t regressed, which shows up as sexual anxiety and sexual dysfunctions. Sometimes nothing shows outwardly, although their inner world runs wild. This workshop not only offers a thorough understanding of acute regressions, it shows you how to help people get out of them and reduce their future occurrences.

Long-term steady-state regressions. This workshop also covers the other major type of regression. Identifying steady-state regressions is not easy because they involve long-term stable “low mode functioning.” The problem is that everyone (including you) mistakes this suppressed functioning for your actual ability and personality. People can live regressed for decades, never suspecting they’re living in an invisible box of impaired functioning.

A major focus of this workshop is helping clients regulate acute and steady-state regressions:

Controlling acute regressions lets you control your life.
Resolving long-term steady-state regressions lets you come alive.

The interpersonal neurobiological impacts of repeated traumatic mind mapping often remain long after the benefits insight and catharsis have come and gone. These impairments show up as content, present or absent, in your mind, caused by gaps in autobiographical memory and narrow-band holes in mind-mapping radar. But these difficulties often involve more than what you remember or not. Many people constantly struggle with a hostile inner mental world.

This year’s program specializes in people’s inner mental world. A hostile inner mental world is filled with intrusive thoughts that plague you with criticism, undermine your abilities, and raise your anxieties. This is where clients learn to stop their acute regressions and fight their way out of long-term regressions. Rather than just describing the problem, this year’s program offers proven treatment methods for changing a hostile inner mental world.


This workshop emphasizes practical methods for resolving regressions. These consist of two different sets of tools. The first set is powerful time-tested techniques that clients apply to themselves between sessions. The second set consists of strategies to guide your in-session interventions.

Although we’ve conducted six-day Intensive Workshops for decades, the power of last year’s program took us by surprise. We expect this year’s training to be just as life-changing. Come prepared for an impactful personal experience in addition to gaining powerful new therapeutic intervention skills.

When it comes to helping people recover from the emotional sequela of interpersonal trauma, this year’s program treads where many therapists don’t go.


There! We said it! This workshop covers some of the most powerful brain-changing therapeutic techniques we've developed. No public sexual behavior is involved or permitted. But if you are sexually mature enough and sufficiently differentiated to use Lucid Masturbation™ in treating interpersonal neurobiological problems, this workshop offers one-of-a-kind training in brain-changing therapy. Approximately 20% of the workshop will address this topic.


By attending this workshop, you will learn:

  • What are acute regressions?
  • What causes regressions?
  • What does it feel like to be regressed?
  • Common triggers for regressions.
  • Methods for getting out of acute regressions.
  • Reducing future acute regressions by harnessing interpersonal neurobiology.
  • What are steady-state regressions?
  • Predictable pattern of coming out of steady-state regressions.
  • Tools for resolving steady-state regressions.
  • Methods for changing a cruel inner mental world.
  • Reactive regressions: Why getting better can make your brain fall apart.
  • Optimal intensity of therapy.
Prerequisites for attendance:

If you’ve attended prior workshops in the Crucible Neurobiological Therapy series, you’ll find this year’s program builds on—but does not duplicate—what you’ve already learned. However, prior participation is not required because this workshop is complete in itself. We strongly recommend all participants read Brain Talk (study Chapter 14) before attending. Prior personal experience with masturbation is also strongly recommended.

Our 6-day residential programs offer the advantages of enhanced informal learning continuing outside of classroom time, connecting with colleagues and making new friends, and time to integrate new learnings.

Please Note:
  1. It is unavoidable you will visualize or read traumatic case material while participating in this program. Please give this serious consideration if you are easily traumatized in your professional or personal life.
  2. Only selected submitted clinical cases or personal written dialogues will receive feedback or commentary.

Prior attendance at last year's workshop is not a prerequisite for registering.
However, we strongly recommend reading Brain Talk before this year's program.
To learn more about Brain Talk, click here.
Buy Brain Talk now at
eBook, Print, or Professional eBook



David Schnarch

Thirty years ago David Schnarch developed Crucible® Therapy, the first differentiation-based core integration of sexual and marital therapy. He is a licensed clinical psychologist and author of internationally best-selling books (Passionate Marriage, Intimacy & Desire, Resurrecting Sex, and Constructing the Sexual Crucible.)

David has a proven track record of clinical innovation. He has received 3 major awards for professional contributions to the practice of psychology, sex therapy, and marriage and family therapy. He is regarded as one of America’s most influential therapists in these fields. David is an AASECT Certified Sex Therapist (Diplomat status), a Clinical Member of the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT), and Board Certified in Couple and Family Psychology.

Twelve years ago David began integrating modern brain science into Crucible Therapy. Crucible® Neurobiological Therapy, the first mind mapping-based interpersonal neurobiological therapy is the result. Refined through a decade of exhaustive literature review, clinical innovation and case study research, David’s latest work was released in January, 2018 in his newest book, Brain Talk: How Mind Mapping Brain Science Can Chance Your Life and Everyone in It (Sterling Publishers).


For details of the Denver, CO Workshop location, lodging and services, click here.

Early registration (received by September 30, 2019) - $900.00.
Standard registration - $975.00

  • Attendance at all six days will be required.
  • Fees include coffee and beverage breaks. Lunch is on your own all days.

Please Note: The Denver, CO Crucible Neurobiological Therapy Workshop will be filmed for archive and research purposes. These recordings will be used in our subsequent trainings for mental health professionals and will not be shown on television or to the general public. All cameras will be aimed at Dr. Schnarch, as recording what he says and does is the object of this project. However, your appearance or voice could incidentally appear on camera or be recorded through your participation in the workshop. For this reason we ask that all participants sign a video release (click here to view & print) allowing us to video tape you as a part of the workshop and to use the video tape solely at our discretion for future training/educational/informational programs. Before completing your registration, please review completely the release and be sure you are comfortable with signing it. All participants in this workshop must complete the release as part of the registration process.

Denver, CO Cancellation Policy:
By Written Request Only.
  When cancellation is received by September 30, 2019: full refund minus $150;
  Received by October 10, 2019: 50% refund;
  Thereafter 25% refund, no refund after start of Workshop.

To complete your registration, you must complete the Workshop Agreement and Conflicts of Interest Disclosure (View and print here) and Video Release (View and print here) and return these forms to us. Your Registration is not confirmed until MFHC has received and approved these forms. After completing payment, please print these pages, sign, and email to


Continuing Education Credits:

Crucible Neurobiological Therapy Six Day Intensive Workshop #3:
  This program is sponsored by the Marriage and Family Health Center (MFHC, also doing business as the Crucible Institute). 

Marriage & Family Health Center (MFHC) has been approved by NBCC as an Approved Continuing Education Provider, ACEP No. 5870. Programs that do not qualify for NBCC credit are clearly identified. MFHC is solely responsible for all aspects of the programs. This workshop earns 39 NBCC Clock Hours.

MFHC is also an approved provider of the Texas State Board of Social Worker Examiners (TEXAS SW), and this workshop earns: Six Day Workshop 39 CE Credits.

CE Credits $15.00 per certificate requested.  If you need CE credits, you must take responsibility for checking to see if we have approval for your agency or licensing board.  We have participants coming from all over the United States and outside the United States. Thus, we cannot guarantee CE credits for every State or Agency.  Many professional organizations will accept the CE Credits from parallel organizations, but it is your responsibility to confirm status with your professional organization.  The variations of the exact amount of CE hours depend on each Agency’s policy regarding breaks.

Register now!

This workshop makes good therapists better, combining the fine art of psychotherapy with evolving brain science. Reserve your space in this exciting clinical training.