Talking with Voices (4 Days)

Working & Talking with Voices: Creating recovery for people who hear voices

A four day intensive course for mental health professional and voice hearers.

This innovate four-day course looks both at the theory and practice of working with and talking to voices, using the techniques developed by pioneers Ron Coleman and Professor Marius Romme, and further developed by Dr. Rufus May, Eleanor Longden and Dr. Dirk Corstens.

Dynamic, practical and interactive this course will enable practitioners and voice hearers to understand the theory behind working with and talking to voices – and the ability and confidence to use new ways of working with in their own practice.


During the course each working pair will have individual time with all 3 tutors to practice the techniques.  Dirk will also offer a “clinic” to all voice hearers to discuss diagnosis, treatment and to address any questions the voice hearer may have.

Delivered by an International Team of Experts

Dr. Dirk Corstens (Dutch Psychiatrist and Chair of INTERVOICE)

Ron Coleman (UK, Voice hearer, Trainer & Author)

Eleanor Longden (UK Voice hearer and award winning Psychologist)

Many people who hear challenging voices have found that a turning point in coping with the experience is finding different ways of talking with and understanding the voices.  Exploring the voice’s motives and discovering different ways of relating to them can help change the relationship between the voice-hearer and their voices.

Why is Speaking With Voices Helpful?

  • It offers a neutral but strong attitude to working with voices – acceptance is the core of the technique.
  • It helps develop increased awareness, objectivity and a more productive relationship between voices and voice-hearer.
  • By definition, voice-hearing is a very lonely experience.  Allowing others to “hear” the voices is empowering, liberating and a source of considerable support.  In turn, it also affords professionals, friends and family some valuable insight into the reality of a person’s voice-hearing experience.


Basic Principles

The most essential principle is that we are not necessarily trying to change the voices, nor banish them from the person’s life.  What we are trying to do is explore their relationship with the voice-hearer.

Doing this work will help the individual gain a different perspective on what the voices are trying to say and if the person can develop a stronger attitude then the voices are able to change.

Our aim is not to get rid of the voices, but to make their relationship with the voice hearer more equal through helping the person take back control.

Learning Outcomes

Day 1 & 2

  • Understanding of Hearing Voices
  • Introduction to Developing Coping Strategies
  • Introduction to Working with Belief Systems
  • Introduction to Voice Profiling
  • Developed Confidence & Awareness in Working with Voices
  • Developed a Toolkit for Working with Client’s Voices
  • Confidence to Use the Voices Workbook
  • Using the Maastricht Interview Schedule
  • Voice hearing & dissociation

Day 2 & 3

  • Important information about the treatment methods for those hearing voices, using the Maastricht model
  • An Introduction to voice dialogues
  • Practicing voice dialoguing with volunteers
  • How to overcome problems within the process

Who Should Attend This Training?

  • Professional mental health workers: Nurses, Psychiatrists, Psychologists, Occupational Therapists, Support Workers and Social Workers
  • Voice hearers who want to take charge of their experience, want their worker to have a better understanding of them and are wanting to recover but find dealing with the voices keeps them from moving forward in their lives.

Participants will have the opportunity to study and practice the voice dialoguing method and explore various ways of understanding and relating to the voice hearers experiences.

We would highly recommend that each worker attending this course is accompanied by a voice hearer that they are already working with.  This means that they can carry on with the work after the course is finished and we will be able to offer continuing on-line supervision.

Individual workers and voice hearers are very welcome to attend the course and we will match you with a voice hearer or worker.


Ron Coleman is a Mental Health Trainer and Consultant specialising in Recovery and Psychosis.  Following his role a national coordinator of the Hearing Voices Network (UK) he used his experiences of recovery to design workbooks and training packages to enable voice hearers to gain ascendancy over the negative aspects of the voice hearing experience.  Ron’s own route to recovery after spending 13 years in and out of the psychiatrist system has given him many insights into the numerous difficult issues facing today’s mental health services.  Ron is the author of Recovery: An Alien Concept and co-authored Working With Voices and Working to Recovery.  Ron has published several books including the above and also Politics of the Madhouse.


Dr. Dirk Corstens has been a social psychiatrist and psychotherapist since 1992 (The Netherlands).  He is educated in Cognitive, Psychodynamic & Systems Therapy, Transactional Analysis and Voice Dialoguing work.  Since 1992, Dirk has been a collaborator in the Hearing Voices Project of the University of Maastricht, with Professor Marius Romme and Dr. Sandra Escher and is closely involved in working with voice hearers.  Dirk developed the recovery programme, Working with Voices, and is currently preparing research on this subject.  Dirk is also the chair of INTERVOICE.


Eleanor Longden is an award winning psychologist currently working on her PhD and also with the Bradford Early Intervention Psychosis Team (UK).  As a past user of psychiatric services, she has a strong interest in promoting tolerance, awareness and positive explanations for mental health issues, and for the last four years has worked in both a clinical and academic capacity to endorse creative, enabling approaches to experiences such as voice-hearing, unusual beliefs and self-injury.