EMDR Mini-conference
pril 30 and May 1, 2005 at Oakland's Preservation Park

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Douglas Cybela, Ph.D.

Performance Enhancement Using EMDR & HeartMath.


Douglas J. Cybela, Ph.D. received his Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He is a staff psychologist with Ministry Medical Center, Department of Psychiatry, located in Stevens Point, Wisconsin. He also maintains a private practice in Wausau, along with a business, APEX, that specializes in performance enhancement for managers & administrator in both public service and the private sector.



A Performance Enhancement Program using EMDR can be an effective leadership development tool. The issue of management-related stress was explored as a roadblock to effective leadership. APEX, LLC, in partnership with Marathon County (State of Wisconsin), has established an innovative program for leadership development which has demonstrated positive results in improving the participant’s self-confidence, optimism, and social skills in the work setting, along with reducing overall job stress. The Performance Enhancement Program incorporates EMDR, HeartMath techniques, and a non-clinical personality instrument to assess the individual’s coping style for managing stress in the workplace. Specific strategies for identifying negative & positive cognitions unique to this population are noted for the EMDR protocol.


The program includes a description of the set-up, protocols, pilot program, implementation, and follow-up (“refresher course option”) used with Marathon County managers and administrators. A study is reported, that used Nowak’s Stress Profile, to measure stress reduction in 23 government managers and 8 members of the Sheriff’s Department Administration. Factor-analytically derived components revealed that adaptive responses became more frequent, negative responses diminished, and healthy habits increased. Limitations of this study are discussed, as well as implications for EMDR intervention in leadership development. To date this program has serviced individually over 95 managers & administrators in Marathon County government & law enforcement. The program has been in operation since early 2,000. Participants in this seminar will learn how EMDR and HeartMath techniques can be effectively integrated into a public organization and law enforcement leadership development program, and how it can be developed in similar settings.




By the conclusion of this presentation, participants will be able to:

  1. Recognize the negative impact that high levels of stress have upon cognitive functioning and the subsequent performance of supervisors in public organizations & law enforcement agencies.
  2. Demonstrate knowledge of the framework for an individual, time-limited, performance enhancement program for managers, using EMDR and a non-clinical personality instrument to assess coping style for handling stress in the workplace.
  3. Identify examples of negative & positive cognitions used with management-related targets in the EMDR protocol.
  4. Demonstrate understanding of how to integrate HeartMath techniques into a performance enhancement program in the workplace.
  5. Describe how Marathon County’s successful use of EMDR in a performance enhancement program for leadership development can be replicated in others settings.


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