Identifying and Working with Maladaptive Schemas

Date: 4th March 2023


A day where we look at the work of Jeffery Young and the concept of Maladaptive Schemas.  These can be described as beliefs about us, our life, the world and others, which help us cope with and make sense of things when we are children, but which in later life can sabotage happiness and connection



Without the right support in our early years, we are likely to develop maladaptive schemas, and these will become a lifelong way of relating to ourselves and the world.  They start off being helpful to us in some way and eventually become very unhelpful.  An early maladaptive schema has been defined by Jeffrey Young as ‘a broad pervasive theme or pattern regarding oneself and one’s relationship with others, developed during childhood and elaborated throughout one’s lifetime, and dysfunctional to a significant degree’.

This workshop will present the different maladaptive schemas that Jeffery Young identified and explore how they came into being, how they might have developed and how they sabotage wellbeing and connection in adult life.  Identifying these in our clients’ stories can be incredibly useful as we can help them to gain awareness of their patterns and how to adapt them.

We will look at The Connections Model, a holistic model that suggests that the self is made up of at least four parts; mind, body, soul and emotion.  We will explore how maladaptive schemas lead to disconnection within the person and their wider world using the model and linking this to maladaptive schemas.

There will also be a chance to consider schemas in relation to yourself and your practice.

Course details

Our CPD workshops are facilitated by experienced practicing specialists in their fields. We have a range of courses that are aimed at qualified counsellors who wish to develop their practice, as well as students of counselling. Each day is certified with 6 hours of CPD.

Timing of day: 10am-4.30pm

Delivery method: Online Workshop. Participants will learn by a lecture format, group discussions, pair work, exploring case studies and by practicing techniques learned, in the training group.

Open to: Qualified therapists, Heartwood diploma students and students from other counselling training colleges.

Cost per day: £85 (Current Heartwood students or Heartwood Alumni receive special rate of £45 per day).

Learning Outcomes:

  • Explain how maladaptive schemas develop and how they impact on life and relationships
  • Identify the maladaptive schemas in yourself and your client work
  • Explain how the Connections Model explains disconnection from self and others
  • Identify ways in which maladaptive schemas can be worked with in counselling



Mark Hartshorn has designed and taught counselling and supervision courses since 2008.  He has taught in private and adult education settings and set up an independent specialist counselling training organisation which he ran for 7 years until 2021.  He has around 30 years of experience of working in the field of holistic therapy, counselling and wellbeing.  He is author of The Connections Model, a holistic model of wellbeing and connection.  He is passionate about empowering others and brings this passion into his teaching which he delivers with humour and realness.


Cost per day: £85 (Current Heartwood students or Heartwood Alumni receive special rate of £45 per day).

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