The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma – Bessel van der Kolk
The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma is a groundbreaking book by psychiatrist Bessel van der Kolk. It explores the long-term effects of trauma on physical and mental health, and provides insight into how to use a variety of treatments to heal from traumatic experiences.
Trauma is Deeply Rooted
Traumatic events don’t just affect our minds – they can also have profound physical and emotional consequences.
Van der Kolk shows how trauma can be deeply rooted in our bodies and brains, causing us to feel overwhelmed, disconnected and out of control.
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Trauma Can Be Treated
Despite the severity of trauma, there is hope.
Van der Kolk points to a variety of treatments which can help people heal from traumatic experiences.
These include psychotherapy, yoga, mindfulness practices and medication.
Understand the Impact of Trauma
In order to heal from trauma, we must first understand its impact on our lives.
We must be willing to acknowledge and accept our feelings, as well as recognize how trauma affects our thoughts, behavior and relationships.
Connect with Others
Research has shown that social support helps us cope with difficult circumstances more effectively.
We should be open to seeking support from family and friends, as well as from professionals such as therapists or counselors.
Develop Healthy Coping Strategies
Developing healthy coping strategies is essential for healing from trauma.
This includes learning relaxation techniques such as deep breathing and meditation, engaging in physical activities, being mindful of our thoughts and feelings, and talking to someone we trust about our experiences.
Recognize Your Strengths
We all have strengths that can help us cope with difficult emotions and situations.
By recognizing these strengths and understanding how they can help us cope with traumatic experiences, we can begin to build resilience and move toward healing.
Self-compassion helps us be kinder to ourselves when faced with difficult emotions or challenging events.
Instead of judging ourselves harshly or placing unrealistic expectations on ourselves, we should practice self-compassion by accepting our flaws and mistakes without judgment or criticism.
Acceptance is Key
Acceptance is an important part of healing from trauma.
This means being willing to accept our current circumstances and acknowledge that not everything will be perfect or go according to plan.
This allows us to move forward with more clarity and purpose.
Explore Meaningful Rituals
Exploring meaningful rituals can help us heal from trauma by providing a sense of safety and connection.
This includes taking time for reflection or contemplation, engaging in spiritual practices such as prayer or meditation, or participating in creative activities like art or music therapy.
Find Joy in Life
It’s important to remember that life is worth living despite traumatic experiences.
We should strive to find joy in everyday moments and look for moments of connection with others or activities that bring us pleasure.
This helps us stay motivated to pursue our goals and cultivate a sense of meaning in life.