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Couples Therapy: The First Session

16 August 2023 @ 5:30 pm 8:30 pm

“Setting up a safe, engaging and relational container in couples therapy can be of profound importance to supporting your couples.  Laying the foundation for the success of your future work together.” Sean Tonnet

This seminar will support participants to develop skills in working with couples, with a focus on organising and implementing a first session.

The importance of the first session in couples work can never be underestimated.  Therapists can be unsure of how to navigate the complex conditions of relationships that arrive in their practice rooms whilst concurrently building a confident, therapeutic alliance.  This combination can be enough to deter many therapists from starting with couples, or in supporting their existing couples to make repeat bookings.

This seminar will benefit you to feel confident in beginning couples therapy, understanding essential practice principles.  It is not only suitable for beginning couples therapists, but also for experienced therapists looking to enhance their practice.

Seminar Outcomes will include:

  • Learn foundational ‘first session’ structures that will support your practice confidence and support couples to get the most out of their session.
  • Discuss the relevance of neurobiology, attachment theory and emotions in couples dynamics and how this effects the couple system.
  • Understanding destructive couples cycles and how to support de-escalation and reconnection
  • Learn how to avoid the common traps that therapist fall into in couples therapy
  • Understanding the intersection of process and behavioural interventions.
  • Reviewing complex couples issues.

Other Attendees Feedback:

“Sean’s depth of knowledge, authenticity, skill and energy left me feeling deeply inspired in my work with couples. An outstanding workshop”  – G.F.

“ Sean’s experience, passion and knowledge gave me many practical and useable tools to take away. I so appreciated his comfortable and authentic presence” – L.O.

“This workshop has given me many extra skills for my couples work. Sean’s gentle and attuned facilitation was outstanding and i left very inspired ” – A.H.

“Sean is passionate, and has great depth of knowledge. This compilation of material is both inspiring and foundational ” – M.T.


The workshop is suitable for therapists interested in Gestalt Therapy and working with couples including:

Emerging Couple Therapists:

If you are new to couples therapy, this training will provide tools and insight into understanding couple conflict cycles and give you the confidence to experience more from your couples therapy.

Experienced Couples Therapists:

Experienced couple therapists will find the training solidifies their existing skills and adds new insights into their practice. The training will deepen the knowledge and experience you have, and fine-tune techniques and interventions in support of your clients.

Individual Therapists:

Strengthening your understanding of couple cycles and couples therapy will support you, as an individual therapist, in working with presenting relationship issues. This increased awareness and in-depth perception will make you a more complete individual therapist.

About your Presenter:

Sean Tonnet (MGest) has been working with people for over 30 years and as a full time clinical psychotherapist, clinical supervisor and international facilitator for the past 17 years. His reputed and respected practice reflects his comprehensive training and clinical excellence in therapy and facilitation. Specialising in relationships, Sean has over 16,000 case hours working with couples and exceptional experience in workshop development and delivery. He melds creative, relational Gestalt methods and contemporary psychotherapy, neurobiology and mindfulness practices within a safe and learning environment. His work with the entertainment industry, including international band Parkway Drive, was recently highlighted on the ABC Australia Story “Getting Heavy”. His work has been reviewed in radio, television and in print. Sean is a highly sought after therapist and facilitator across Australia.

$45 for GANZ Members, $90 for everyone else. Get your ticket here.

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