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FAQs About Intensives


1. Who goes to intensives? And who should go?    


Professionals providing health care and mental health care find Intensives worthwhile, even if they are not in medical education or primary care, the traditional sources of Balint interest. If you plan to start a group, an Intensive is the perfect way to begin preparing to do so. Attending with a co-leader or a decision maker from your program works well, too. Still unsure? Contact the host of the next Intensive. Please visit our Upcoming Events page for more details.

2.What happens at Intensives?


Registrants are assigned to small groups that conduct Balint sessions, each followed by a period of reflection on the group process and leadership.  Learning is from experience, the experience of participating in and leading your small group’s Balint session, with reflection and feedback.  Didactic presentations and opportunities to consult with faculty are also provided.


3. When is the next Intensive?


We hold Intensives at least twice yearly: in the spring in the western part of the country, in the fall in the east, and sometimes in the winter in the central part of the country. We open registration for one at a time. If the registration period for the latest intensive is closed and details of the next one do not seem to be available, they will be soon.


4. How can I get an Intensive to occur closer to home?


Consider hosting one at your own organization! If you have an agency or department able to help you with administrative support and 7 to 9 other colleagues who might be interested as well, you may be able to host an Intensive on The Road. Contact the Coordinator of Intensives to discuss the possibilities.


5. What else can I do if an Intensive won’t work for me?


Look for a shorter event, such as a Balint Weekend. A Balint Weekend holds serial Balint groups, too, but is shorter and does not provide leader training.  When you think you’re not interested in leading a group or you want something shorter or less expensive than an Intensive, a Weekend is perfect. 


6. What if I don’t see a Balint Weekend offered near me?


The Events Committee on this website may know of possible Weekends not yet being advertised.  They can also provide planning tools, support and help for hosting a Balint Weekend if you don’t find one near you.  Contact the Events Committee Chair. 


 7. How can I make my Weekend or Intensive experience last?


Contact a faculty member from your Weekend or intensive. They share their contact information deliberately. A quick question will be welcome, and if your issue is one for the Balint listserve or lengthier supervision, that can be worked out, as well. Also consider joining an Online Balint  group, which provides an inexpensive ongoing Balint experience and a time-limited commitment.


. 8. Will I be ready to lead a group after I attend an Intensive? 


Very rarely, but it depends.  If you have had extensive experience and training with other groups, an intensive might be enough to start.  Even then, having a Balint-trained co-leader, consultant or supervisor can make a world of difference. The ABS recommends a series of three Intensives.  If your setting will require you to take charge of a Balint group after a single Intensive, talk to your colleagues and administration after the intensive about how they can support your leadership.


9. How can I continue to develop my Balint Group Leadership skills?

The ABS offers a structured pathway to becoming a Credentialed Balint Leader that involves attending leadership Intensives and provides supervision as you start and lead your own Balint group back home.  There is also a shorter option which uses a distance learning format: the one-year Fellowship. Information on Credentialing Credentialing Roadmap and the Fellowship Brochure are on this website. 

 "Restoring the Core of Clinical Practice: What is a Balint group and how does it help?" by Laurel Milberg, PhD and Katherine Knowlton, PhD. Available in paperback or ebook. 

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The American Balint Society
, is a 501c3 non-profit organization dedicated to improving the therapeutic relationships between healing professionals and their clients/patients. The American Balint  Society is a member society of the International Balint Federation