Cold Therapy: what is it?


Narcissus flower in bloom.

Cold Therapy is a new therapy developed by Sam Vaknin for people with NPD and other disorders.   It sets up a scenario that creates a facsimile of the original trauma that that set off their disorder (retraumatization).   The “cold” refers to the idea of recognizing the narcissist is an emotional child and allowing them relive the trauma without offering any “warmth.” The narcissist is then given emotional tools to handle the traumatic event differently, thereby “rewiring” the brain.    It has had hopeful results on several people diagnosed with Cluster B disorders, including NPD and ASPD, and other disorders.

According to Vaknin,

Cold Therapy deploys tools from the arsenal of child psychology to treat these disorders because of their roots in attachment dysfunctions and arrested development. The therapy seeks to recreate an environment conducive to the replication of original childhood traumas so as to allow the client to resolve them as an adult.


From the webpage about Cold Therapy:

Developed by Sam Vaknin, Cold Therapy is based on two premises —

1. That narcissistic disorders are actually forms of complex post-traumatic conditions; and
2. That narcissists are the outcomes of arrested development.

Cold Therapy borrows techniques from child psychology and from treatment modalities used to deal with PTSD. Cold Therapy consists of the retraumatization of the narcissistic client in a hostile, non-holding environment which resembles the ambience of the original trauma. The adult patient successfully tackles this second round of hurt and thus resolves early childhood conflicts and achieves closure rendering his now maladaptive narcissistic defenses redundant, unnecessary, and obsolete.

Cold Therapy makes use of proprietary techniques such as erasure (suppressing the client’s speech and free expression and gaining clinical information and insights from his reactions to being so stifled). Other techniques include: grandiosity reframing, guided imagery, negative iteration, erasure, happiness map, mirroring, escalation, role play, assimilative confabulation, hypervigilant referencing, and reparenting.

The therapy then makes use of Lidija Rangelovska’s “Spiral of Healing” to revisit the original traumas, but this time in a holding (supportive) environment, replete with empathy and emotions.

Who can benefit from Cold Therapy

Cold therapy is a radical departure from current tenets of most treatment modalities.  It is especially effective in the treatment of Narcissistic and Antisocial Personality Disorders, and certain mood disorders, including dysthymia and major depressive episodes (clinical depression of both exogenous and endogenous causes).

Who can attend

Anyone can attend the seminar (which is to be held in Vienna, Austria on May 12 – 14, 2017), but licensed therapists, psychologists, and mental health practitioners will receive a certificate of completion at the end of the seminar.

Dates, times, exact location, itinerary for the workshop for each day, and information about payment can be found here:


8 thoughts on “Cold Therapy: what is it?

  1. Pingback: Cold Therapy: what is it? | Lucky Otters Haven | O LADO ESCURO DA LUA

    • I follow a lot of accounts that don’t show up in my reader. I’ve always been following you too,but never get any notifications. 😦 I have no idea why. WP has a lot of glitches.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. This is fascinating. I like the notion of “looking” backward (unraveling) to disentangle and realign (rewire) in a healthier manner our mental responses. It makes so much sense.

    This is becoming self aware and through intellectual honesty acquiring a greater understanding of reality itself.

    Liked by 1 person

    • It’s fascinating to me too. I wish I could go and see what it’s all about. But an intensive therapy like this that goes back to the original trauma and no supply — I think it could be very painful, almost like an addict withdrawing from drugs (supply is their drug of choice). I almost think something like this could work better in a controlled hospital type setting. I’ll be looking forward to hearing about future results of this. I wonder if Sam will get it for himself after he has people trained. I’m also hopeful about it working on people with other disorders, like depression or CPTSD.


  3. “It is especially effective in the treatment of Narcissistic and Antisocial Personality Disorders, and certain mood disorders, including dysthymia and major depressive episodes (clinical depression of both exogenous and endogenous causes).”

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Some (very VERY few) narcs maybe, but psychopaths(“ASPD”) are completely BEYOND help. Definition of incorrigible


Comments are closed.