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Structural Reparenting – How to Work With Positive Schemas in Schema Therapy (Workshop I - Basics)


Christoph Fuhrhans


En 24-4


Schemas develop depending on the fulfillment of a child’s basic emotional needs: Maladaptive schemas result, if the needs are repeatedly and persistently inadequately fulfilled. Positive schemas, who recently have been further investigated (Louis et al.) are formed when basic needs are repeatedly and satisfactorily met – where the question remains open to what extent they are formed through real childhood experiences (Lockwood and Shaw, 2012) or whether they are somehow innate.
Furthermore, sometimes it is discussed whether there is another possibility besides negative schema and positive schema: having “no schema” (Keyfitz 2013).
Positive and negative schemas differ in some features:
Firstly, the 18 maladaptive schemata are empirically contrasted with just 14 distinct positive schemas (in German only 10 so far). Some negative schemas correspond to exactly one positive schema, while some positive ones overlap with several negative schemas.
Furthermore, there is the interesting phenomenon that a person can have opposing schemas on a certain topic at the same time, for example an “instability” as well as a “stable attachment” schema, which are independently formed in probably different contexts and later are activated according to the situation and specific triggers (Paetsch et al., 2022).

What does this mean for our work with positive schemas?

Emotion-activating techniques, such as imagination and chair work, rewind the client back to childhood. In child mode, the client can catch up on the emotional experiences he or she did not have had as a kid and what would have been necessary for the forming of positive schemas. So to say, it’s “never too late to have a happy childhood” as a basis of a good self-esteem and a secure attachment.

Methods & Objectives:

In these workshops you will learn:

- to know and to differenciate the 14 positive schemas

- to form the client’s individual map of negative and positive schemas (by using YSQ-S3 and YPSQ etc.), to present it graphically and to discuss it with the client and relate it biographically

- to utilize the great potential of schema-building reparenting in imagination, chair work, etc. - finally in all reparenting activities

- It doesn't always have to be ice cream: the long list and the schema-related categories of possible happy child activities ...

- to use the seven dimensions of good parenting (Louis et al., 2018) – what do they mean for the therapist as a reparenting agent?

And we will give an oulook on to the special contents of the follow-up workshop No. II in January 2025:

how to work with phase-oriented reparenting:

- how to correctly apply the sequence of schemas to be established - first the attachment-oriented schemas for basal security and stability, then the autonomy-oriented schemas, etc., (incl. exceptions to this order!)  as well as the sufficient length and duration of reparenting time in imagery and chair work

-  how to choose the right actor/reparenting protagonist - when to use the therapist, when to use another person, when finally to use the healthy adult mode itself, and how specifically the Healthy Adult will reparent the child sufficiently enough (emotional resonance room exercise)

- how to “reparent the parent”: trans-generational reparenting, a promising new approach (developed by A. Karaosmanoglu)


  • 11/21/2024, 12:00-15:15
  • 11/22/2024, 12:00-15:15




Online - Zoom, Online


280 Euro





Two consecutive workshops are offered, but can also be booked separately:

1.) "Basics of work with positive schemes and phase-oriented application in the first and second phases of therapy", 21. & 22.11.2024

2.) "Short repetition, interventions on positive schemes in the second and third phases of therapy and further techniques", 09. & 10.01.2025


Register now


Keyfitz, L., Lumley, M. N., Hennig, K., & Dozois, D. J. A. (2013). The role of positive schemas in child psychopathology and resilience. Cognitive Therapy and Research

Lockwood G & Shaw, I. (2012). Schema therapy and the role of joy and play. In J. Broersen & M. van Vreeswijk (Eds.), The Wiley-Blackwell handbook of schema therapy: Theory research and practice (pp. 209–227). Chichester: Wiley

Louis, J. P., Wood, A. M., Lockwood, G., Ho, M.-H. R., & Ferguson, E. (2018). Positive clinical psychology and Schema Therapy (ST): The development of the Young Positive Schema Questionnaire (YPSQ) to complement the Young Schema Questionnaire 3 Short Form (YSQ-S3). Psychological Assessment

Louis, J.P., Wood, A.M. and Lockwood, G. (2018). Development and Validation of the Positive Parenting Schema Inventory (PPSI) to Complement the Young Parenting Inventory (YPI) for Schema Therapy (ST). SAGE online journals

Paetsch, A., Moultrie, J., Kappelmann, N., Fietz J., Bernstein, D.P., Kopf-Beck, J. (2022). Psychometric Properties of the German Version of the Young Positive Schema Questionnaire (YPSQ) in the General Population and Psychiatric Patients. J Pers Assess.

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