EMDR Intensives

Building Your Support Team with Catherine Alvarado

Benefits of EMDR Intensives:


What is EMDR Intensive?

You are probably familiar with the standard weekly format for therapy. This traditional format for therapy has been a long-term support system to help many work through life challenges over time. However, schedules can be so hectic and demanding that a weekly therapy appointment feels more overwhelming than supportive.

Flexibility in how you receive therapeutic support is important, and the traditional model of weekly psychotherapy is only one option to meet your needs. While Ongoing Support is available in a weekly 50-minute format, EMDR Intensives are highly concentrated EMDR therapy sessions, occurring for 2 hours per day over the course of your preferred number of days.


Building Your Support Team with Catherine Alvarado
Building Your Support Team with Catherine Alvarado

Benefits of EMDR Intensives:

Opportunity to progress through symptoms in a more succinct way without the interruptions of a 50-minute session
Do not have to pace out your EMDR resourcing and reprocessing or spend months in therapy to feel better
Treatment goals do not get lost or forgotten in the chaos of present concerns and crisis
Focused care = more efficient
Thoughtful and structured treatment planning
Offers tangible resources for yourself and/or to bring back for deeper work with your primary therapist

Intensives offer a multitude of resources and can help to either increase performance, confidence, or significantly decrease the devastating effects of a single event trauma (e.g., negative cognitions, disturbing emotions, and body sensations).  While significant healing can occur in a single Intensive, everything you would like to resolve may not be possible at once. Complex trauma may need more attention than a single Intensive may offer. During your treatment experience, you will be supported with a treatment and processing plan to best address your treatment goals. If you would like to continue to work intensively on your goals past this, you can do so through monthly, bi-monthly, or quarterly Intensives.


Think of intensive programs like a fast pass, offering you first access to your therapist’s availability and the chance to do intensive work in a program model.

Catherine Alvarado Office
Catherine Alvarado Office Chair


  • Pre-Intensive Interview 
  • Assessments & Symptom Screenings
  • Preparation & Resourcing
  • EMDR Intensive (1-day, 2-day)
  • Post-Intensive Interview

Optional Add Ins:

  • Personalized Treatment Workbook
  • Resourcing Intensive

Learn more in depth about EMDR Intensive Programs.


You do not have to stop working with your primary therapist to participate in an Intensive. EMDR Intensives can be used as an adjunct therapy that allows you to continue working with your primary therapist and get specialized care. 

If you are available to do multiple intensive sessions, that is great. If you are only available to get started, you will be offered referrals for continued care and a Personalized Treatment Workbook to support your continued healing.


Frequently Asked Questions

Why an intensive instead of a normal 50-minute psychotherapy session?

Intensives allow the opportunity to progress through your symptoms in a more succinct and focused way without the interruptions of a 50-minute session. They are offered in a program model with a defined number of contact hours allowing you to work on specific treatment goals.

Who can participate in an EMDR Intensive?

Available for anyone in California – new clients, current weekly clients, and those who are already working with a primary therapist as adjunct therapy.

Does attending an Intensive guarantee I will be able to resolve everything I want to resolve?

An Intensive is not a guarantee we are going to be able to resolve everything you would like to resolve at once. It is an invitation to work on your focused treatment goals in an intensive program model with access to mixed formats (virtual & in person) and wide availability (weekdays & weekends).

What options do I have for bilateral stimulation?

Clients are offered three different types of bilateral stimulation (visual, auditory, & tactile) to support their healing. We can assess which dual attention stimulus will work best for you. If you prefer to use tappers, these will need to be purchased for home use.

What if I already have a therapist?

If you are already working with a therapist, EMDR Intensive Programs can be used as adjunct therapy to address specific treatment goals.

EMDR Intensive Research


Research Supporting the Effectiveness of EMDR Intensives

  • Intensive application of trauma-focused therapy seems to be well tolerated in patients with PTSD, enabling faster symptom reduction with similar, or even better, results, while reducing the risk that patients drop out prematurely. Learn more here and here.
  • Intensive EMDR treatment is feasible and is indicative of reliable improvement in PTSD symptoms in a very short time frame. Learn more here.
  • An intensive program using EMDR therapy is a potentially safe and effective treatment alternative for complex PTSD. Learn more here.
  • The economy is compelling: even compared to other trauma therapy, the intensive format may decrease treatment time, because of time not spent on a) checking in at the beginning of each session, b) addressing current crises and concerns, c) focusing on stabilizing and coping skills that the client won’t need after trauma healing, or d) assisting the client in regaining composure at the end of the session. Learn more here.

You’re So Close…

Maybe you now cognitively understand new things, yet your body is still confused, so you’re curious about how intensive therapy can help. We will identify what format is best for you during your initial consultation. Therapy doesn’t have to be so overwhelming. Reach out.

– Love, Cat

Catherine Alvarado Therapy
Catherine Alvarado Therapy




2309 Pacific Coast Hwy, Hermosa Beach, CA 90254





2309 Pacific Coast Hwy, Hermosa Beach, CA 90254