A Conversation with Irvin Yalom

Worldwide Webinars invites you to this exclusive training webinar.

On the 6th of November, 2017 at 9am AWST, Perth based Clinical Psychologist Dr. David Felton will interview Irvin Yalom and cover the following topics:

  • The role of traditionally taught assessment, formulation and treatment planning in therapy
  • Practical advice for the clinician who is expected to conduct therapy in 10 sessions
  • Managing boundaries between therapists and their clients
  • Dealing with the burdens that come with being a therapist
  • The effective use of dream content in therapy 
  • Getting the balance right in therapist self-disclosure


About Irvin Yalom, M.D.

“To review the accomplishments of Irvin D Yalom is to see more than a dozen fiction and nonfiction books, numerous prestigious awards and title of Emeritus Professor of Psychiatry at Stanford University.  These accolades however, don’t explain the legion of devoted followers he has attracted to his thinking and practice over the last 50 years.

To understand the true impact of Irvin D Yalom on the field of psychotherapy, you have to look into and then beyond his impressive array of achievements and truly appreciate why his writings have resonated with generations of clinicians of all persuasions.  

At first glance, one sees his ability to deconstruct complex human experiences, armed seemingly with just curious enquiry, underscored by a scythe-like sharpness, cutting through the defences guarding against interpersonal intimacy.  On closer inspection, what really appeals is the fearlessness with which he steps into the interpersonal space between the patient and therapist.   New readers will pause and re-read sections imploring them not to be afraid of touching their patient or to conduct house visits while being astonished at his honesty in sharing his most personal reactions to clients, while claiming that his most accomplished therapeutic moment was cataloguing the contents of a patient’s handbag.  It’s with these observations and insights that the reader can see their own humanity and aspiring therapist self, fearlessly laid out at the intersection of the therapeutic alliance.  These directions and disclosures stand in stark contrast to the sterile, modulised treatments that are found populating training programs wherever one cares to look.

But to truly understand the depth of reverence  he holds in therapeutic circles, one has to understand the crisis psychotherapy is experiencing.  Yalom has found himself being the bulwark between the creeping influence of economic pressures that spawn ever briefer manualised treatments and the practice of psychotherapy.  Therapists of many persuasions who see that therapy is not a sequential 10 session affair are fortified when Yalom speaks or writes.  It is this voice I am aiming to bring, talking about the clinical issues that you identify as being the most important to you.”

~Dr. David Felton 


About Dr. David Felton

Ever since a knowing supervisor shoved a copy of Irvin Yalom’s Gift of Therapy in my hands in 2003, his works have provided the cornerstone for my practice.  Newly minted clinicians, graduate with adequacy in delivering  a structured intervention, but should the path of therapy divert to interpersonal process, anxieties skyrocket and confidence gives way to avoidance.  For several generations of clinicians, Yalom has provided the language, the guidance and the courage to enquire about the space that exists between the therapist and client.  It is in this space that fundamental truths of the client’s interpersonal world play out, and where the therapy of the here and now is done.  In my experience, this is where therapy is at its most engaging and most transformative.

In this part of the bio, the interviewer would put down an impressive list of professional achievements, something that qualifies them for the role, which also separates them from the participants.  I suspect my list of achievements is no longer than most, and shorter than many.  I have worked as a clinical psychologist for 12 years and a counsellor before that for another 10.  I have the privilege of working with the most complex clients a public addiction service holds, where complex trauma and disrupted attachments are seemingly a given.  In this work, all of your mainstay therapies have their moment in the sun, but when the storm clouds of interpersonal conflict sweep in, it’s Yalom’s teaching that I turn to.  Yalom has written that it is the relationship that heals and it is the foundation on which therapy is possible.

So in this interview with Yalom, you are going to listen and contribute to a conversation between an iconic figure of psychotherapy and a therapist perhaps much like yourself.  I will aim to delve into the areas of his teachings that have both inspired me while leaving me with wanting to know just that little bit more.

I have found myself moving into that phase of my career where I am looking to impart my learnings to seemingly ever younger generations.  I start this supervisory relationship with the belief they come with an understanding of what to do in the room, but are more or less naïve as to the how.  It is at this point I shove a copy of The Gift of Therapy into their hands and give them the knowing, reassuring look that I once was offered.

Book Now

You are invited to attend our inaugural webinar: “A Conversation with Irvin Yalom”.

Tickets are available to students and health professionals.  Ticket holders can attend the webinar online, or at Edith Cowan University Joondalup Campus (Joondalup Building 32 Room 101) where the interview will be broadcast.

Broadcast licences are available, authorising the broadcasting of this webinar in lecture theatres.  Broadcast licence holders are authorised to fill one lecture theatre to its capacity.

Once purchased, ticket holders receive an automated email from Zoom to the email address associated with their PayPal account, confirming webinar registration and webinar access information.

Attendees are encouraged to visit the Zoom Download Centre and download Zoom Client For Meetings at least three days prior to the webinar.  Please note that some workplace computers have restrictions in place.  If you are unsure, you can Join a Test Meeting.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Will the event be recorded? Can I watch the interview at a later date?

The interview will be recorded, however the decision to release the recording rests with a third party.  We cannot guarantee that the recording will be made available.

I’m attending the webinar from somewhere other than Perth in Western Australia.  What time will the event start in my location?

The 6th of November, 2017 at 9am AWST (Australian Western Standard Time) is the advertised date and time.  To identify the corresponding date and time for your location, go to The Time Zone Converter and select your location from the dropdown menu in the bottom righthand corner.

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