Forging New Connections Conference - Dr Suzanne Zeedyk

Course ref PA4373
CPD points 10
Price £150.00 excl. VAT
Discounts N/A
Location Exeter Racecourse, Kennford, Exeter, Devon, EX6 7XS
Duration 1 day

Tue 4th June 20199:00am - 3:30pm

Making up is more important than messing up

To find out more, join us for a keynote speech from research scientist Dr Suzanne Zeedyk, at one of the forthcoming Forging New Connections conferences, each of which carry 10 CPD points.

During the conference, you will have the opportunity to:

  • refresh your understanding of core Thrive principles
  • find out how to create environments that support resilience
  • update your knowledge of recent developments in neuroscience
  • discover new applications for the Thrive Approach
  • learn about new developments in Thrive-Online and trouble-shoot any issues

Keynote speaker: Suzanne Zeedyk
Dr. Suzanne Zeedyk is a research scientist fascinated by babies’ innate capacity to connect. Since 1993, she has been based at the University of Dundee (Scotland), within the School of Psychology. Her academic career began in the USA, where she completed her PhD at Yale University. In 2011, Suzanne stepped away from a full-time academic post in order to establish an independent training enterprise. Its aim is to help the public understand all that science has discovered about the importance of emotional connection for human health and happiness. It’s working! Approximately 40,000 people have now attended her speaking events, and she reaches over 50,000 people a week on social media. In 2014, Suzanne broadened her public reach even further by founding the organisation Connected Baby. She and her team work to help parents and professionals make practical use of the science of connection. Suzanne’s core aspiration continues to be strengthening awareness of the decisions we take about caring for our children — because those choices are integrally connected to our vision for the kind of society we wish to build.

Why the rupture–repair cycle is key to thriving relationships

Suzanne's Keynote will be the following:

As human beings, we often suffer from a fear of getting things ‘wrong’, messing up, making mistakes. We strive for perfection, wanting to be a model colleague, the best practitioner, the perfect parent. And nowhere is this truer than in our relationships: we so desperately want to get it right for ourselves and those we care about. And yet, the reality is that relationships are a messy business where mistakes are inevitable.

The good news is that research shows that in any relationship the ‘mistakes’ – the moments of disconnection – matter far less than how and whether we can find our way back into connection with one another. In fact, when skilfully done, such repairs to the relationship actually serve to strengthen the bonds of the attachment. It is repairs that build trust.

In her keynote address, Dr Suzanne Zeedyk will be exploring the nature of this rupture–repair cycle in detail, looking at what the cycle is, how it operates, the barriers to repair and practical ways to overcome them. She will be asking challenging questions that lead us to enquire about our own relationship to rupture and repair, prompting insights that enhance both our personal and professional relationships. She will conclude with a message of hope: it does not matter how many times we get it wrong; what matters is our willingness to show up and connect.


We’re delighted to announce that you will have a choice of three Workshops to attend at the Forging New Connections conferences. These Workshops will refresh your knowledge and understanding of Thrive and give you an insight into our most recent and exciting training topics.

Following your conference booking, you will be contacted by our Bookings team to confirm which Workshops from the options below you would like to attend.

Softening the prickles

Overcoming psychological defences in yourself, your colleagues and the children you work with. Would you like to become a more effective leader and change-maker in your organisation? Do you want to improve your relationships with your colleagues and the children you work with? Are you interested in deepening your own self-awareness? Strong self-awareness and the capacity to stay calm, regulated and loving in the face of challenge are vital skills for being both an effective Thrive practitioner and a powerful leader and change-maker. However, when we feel threatened, our psychological defences can sometimes prevent us from being our best selves.

In this workshop, we will be using the metaphor of the cactus to explore the nature of psychological defences, how and why they develop and what they are protecting. Using experiential exercises, you will have the opportunity to imagine into the psychological defences of the adults and children you work with, as well as reflecting on your own defences. You will then explore how you can support yourself to be your best self, even in challenging circumstances, and how you can help others to do the same.

You will come away from the workshop with:

• deeper knowledge of psychological defences and how they relate to interrupted development

• greater empathy for and understanding of your own defences and those of others

• ways of supporting yourself to stay centred in the face of difficulty

• practice in how to overcome the defences of others through constructive ways of relating.

The Power of authenticity

Strengthening relationships using the Vital Relational Functions Would you like to refine your relational skills? Are you interested in exploring the nuances of human interaction in more depth? Do you want to extend your Thrive practice and build on what you already know? In this workshop, we will be deepening our understanding of the Vital Relational Functions (VRFs) – a central part of how we learn to be in relationship as Thrive practitioners. When we begin our Thrive journey, we tend to see the VRFs as part of our toolkit for meeting the needs of children when they are dysregulated. The focus of this workshop is on developing and broadening our use of the VRFs so that we can start to apply them in all of our relationships, adapting them according to the person and the context. In particular, we will be looking at the significance of ruptures in relationships when things go wrong, exploring the challenges of these moments and how skilful repair can ultimately serve to strengthen the relationship.

The workshop includes opportunities to practise the VRFs in a safe and supportive environment, as well as space to reflect on your practice and guidance on how to implement your new learning back in your setting.

You will come away from the workshop with:

• a deeper understanding of the VRFs

• practical experience of using the VRFs in action

• examples of how to share the VRFs with colleagues

• knowledge of how to use the power of relationship to greater effect in both your setting and your life.

Developmental play

Sharing good practice and exploring new strategies and activities

Are you looking to refine your Thrive practice? Would you like to learn more about the Thrive developmental strands? Do you enjoy creating new activities to help the children you work with? In this workshop, we will be revisiting the Thrive developmental strands to deepen our understanding of these crucial stages. We will explore the different ways of being in relationship at each stage and experience some new creative activities that you can use with children to support the various developmental tasks. As well as being guided through experiential activities linked to some of the Thrive developmental strands, you will also have the opportunity to work in small groups to develop and create your own creative play activities which you can take back to the children in your setting.

You will come away from the workshop with:

• enhanced knowledge of the Thrive developmental strands

• practice in working with new strategies and activities

• experience of developing and sharing new creative activities targeted at particular developmental strands.

Following your conference booking, you will be contacted by our Bookings team to confirm which Workshops from the options below you would like to attend.

These conferences are tailored for Licensed Practitioners and Trainers and will carry 10 CPD points.

Tickets are £150 and include refreshments and a buffet lunch.

Please contact Thrive for more information on 01392 797555 option 1

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