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Twilight Conversations: How Talking About Death Enriches Our Lives

  • 16 Nov 2019
  • 10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
  • Encino

The subject of death remains largely taboo in our culture.  Yet, a growing number of Americans are reaching the stage of life when we must face the decline and death of elderly loved ones while feeling increasingly vulnerable to aging and illness ourselves.

Twilight Conversations:

How Talking About Death Enriches Our Lives

Sherry Angel and

Michael Shiffman, Ph.D.
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For a while I felt, ‘Let’s just get on with it,’ but then I realized I can’t dictate this and it enabled me to relax about it.

  • Identify three key elements that co-create the quality of end-of-life conversations;
  • Identify personal issues that hinder and facilitate effective clinical interventions with clients;
  • Describe three ways to support client communications with intimate relationships at the end-of-life;
  • Describe three effective interventions to support clients at their end-of-life.

Encino, California 91436

November 16, 2019

10:00 am – 5:00 pm

$195 registration.

$165 early registration ends October 4, 2019

Please note:  This workshop is held in a private home in Encino and lunch is included.

The subject of death remains largely taboo in our culture.  Yet, a growing number of Americans are reaching the stage of life when we must face the decline and death of elderly loved ones while feeling increasingly vulnerable to aging and illness ourselves.

These tangible signs of mortality open us up to the richness of life that becomes accessible when we are willing to explore within ourselves and venture into delicate, often difficult discussions about end-of-life issues with our closest relatives and friends. While too many of us defer these sensitive conversations until it is too late, they clear a path to deeper relationships and the quality of experience we want to have at the end of life. We hope you will join us in a dialogue that may open the door to your reflections and intimate conversations with your loved ones – and greatly enrich your life.

In the morning of this workshop, Sherry will share her end-of-life conversations with her husband of more than 25 years. Joe died peacefully at home at 92 after a battle with Parkinson’s disease that left him bedridden for several months. About two months before he died, he told Sherry:

It feels like I’m living between two places, between human life and death.

His greatest gift was to talk about what he was thinking and feeling as his life came to an end. Sherry took notes during many of their conversations as part of her healing process, and the results are a good example of what can happen when the topic of death is no longer taboo.

In the afternoon, Michael will facilitate experiential exercises to open us to engaging in end-of-life conversations that will explore the fears and challenges that get in the way of being present and connected.  We will explore our personal experiences as the means through which we can increase our capacity to support family, friends and clients during end-of-life experiences.

This workshop will combine didactics, self-exploration and experiential exercises.

At the end of the workshop, therapists will be able to:


Sherry Angel is a writer and communications specialist with extensive experience in journalism and strategic corporate communications. Early in her career, she was an editor and columnist at the Los Angeles Times and published articles in such national magazines as Redbook and Family Circle. As a communications consultant for the past 15 years, she has worked for Cedars-Sinai, Union Bank and The Irvine Company as well as major universities including UCLA and UC Irvine.

Sherry served on the Cedars-Sinai End of Life Committee and wrote the Advance Healthcare Directive booklet that was distributed to patients throughout Los Angeles to help them make healthcare choices for the future and initiate conversations with loved ones and physicians about end-of-life issues.  She has written extensively in the area of healthcare and healthcare research, including major Cedars-Sinai reports on institutional quality improvement, technology transfer, and the cancer and heart institutes.

From 1997 to 2002, Sherry held leadership positions at the University of California, Irvine, developing and implementing media strategies and initiatives as Director of Media Relations for the campus and creating marketing, website and media materials as Director of Communications for the Graduate School of Management. Her publications experience includes ghostwriting a memoir and serving as assistant editor of features and special projects at the Los Angeles Times, editor and associate publisher of Health & Care magazine, associate editor of Orange County Business Week, and editor of the Toastmasters International magazine. She has also taught journalism at UC Irvine, CSU Fullerton and Fullerton College.

Sherry has a bachelor’s degree in communications from Cal State Fullerton and has received numerous writing awards from a variety of professional organizations, including Sigma Delta Chi, the William Randolph Hearst Foundation, the International Association of Business Communicators, PRSA, the Business Marketing Association and the Orange County Press Club.  She currently works as a freelance writer in Los Angeles and can be contacted at

Michael Shiffman, Ph.D., is a relational body therapist at the Insight Center in West Los Angeles.  He founded LA Dharma in 1999 and co-founded the Insight Center in 2006. Michael has studied with numerous Western Buddhist teachers and currently studies with Rev. Hye Wol Sunim. He has been meditating since 1994 and teaching mindfulness and insight meditation since 2002.

Michael is a certified practitioner of the NeuroAffective Relational Model (NARM) and a Somatic Experiencing Practitioner with substantial training in the use of touch for nervous system regulation and the repair of attachment ruptures.  He is trained in EMDR and is training in Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT).

Michael has an extensive background working with anxiety, panic, traumatic stress, substance abuse and recovery, relapse prevention, and somatic oriented therapeutic practices. He teaches meditation and somatic therapy.  Michael has a private practice in Encino and West Los Angeles.  You can find more details on his website at

Continuing Education:

Continuing Education Units are available. A CE certificate is issued for a $20 charge. Instructions for purchasing CE certificates will be emailed once registration is completed and certificates are issued after the workshop is completed.  Continuing Education Certificates must be purchased within thirty (30) days of the event.

Psychologists: The Insight Center is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. The Insight Center maintains responsibility for this program and its content. This course is provides 6 CE units.

MFTs / LCSWs / LPCCs:  The California Board of Behavioral Sciences accepts APA CEs. This course provides 6 CE units.

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