When we hear the word "trauma," we often think of really intense or dark/wounded places.
The definition of trauma, though, is any experience that our nervous system can not handle. This could be anything from an actual physical injury to emotional pain and suffering or even anxiety felt from our daily activities.
We have all experienced trauma to some degree and we will continue to experience it throughout our lives
Trauma can show up in our bodies in may different ways here are some of the signs.
Problems knowing and describing internal states
Difficulty communicating wishes and desires
Lack of a continuous, predictable sense of self
Poor sense of separateness
Disturbances of body image
Interpersonal difficulties, like shame and guilt
Difficulty attuning to other people’s emotional
Hypersensitivity to physical contact
Borderline Personality Disorder
Dissociative Identity Disorder
Negative Symptoms of
Self-Injurious Behaviour (cutting
Disorders of Eating
Addictions. these can come up as addictions to work, drugs, alcohol, adrenaline like going to the gym a lot
20018 ICD - 11 - introduction of cPTSD
What to do if you are suffering from trauma or have suffered trauma?
Talk to a mental heath professional
As well as talking to a professional you may also want to find a trauma sensitive yoga teacher.
Things to look out for when finding a trauma sensitive yoga teacher
Have a chat with them over the phone or in person
Check out their intake form
See if their session involves no physical assists, is focused on noticing sensations and focused on exploring choices
Explore physical shapes and movements as an opportunity to practice noticing sensations.
Interoception Vs dissociation
See if they offer small group sessions (max 7 people) or one to one
Other Things To Try
Start to befriend your body
The thing about trauma is that it stays trapped in our bodies. As well as talking to professionals we need to mobilise it out of ourselves to live healthily. Basel Van Der Kolk and Dave Emerson have written and held extensive studies on how trauma sensitive yoga can aid with trauma impacted lives.
In Gabor Mate’s book “When The Body Says No” clinical studies have shown a link from repressed feelings, stress and trauma to common diseases such as arthuritis, diabetes, heart disease IBS, Cancer and MS. This further underlines the body mind link.
If you’re interested in learning more heres some books I’ve been reading recently around this subject.
From Surviving To Thriving, Pete Walker
The Body Keeps The Score, Basel Van Der Kolk
Trauma Sensitive Yoga In Therapy, David Emerson
The Pocket Guide To Poly Vagal Theory, Stephen W Porges
When the Body Says No, Gabor Mate
Trauma And Recovery, Judith Herman
Waking The Tiger, Peter Levine
If you’re wanting to reduce the stress in your life, navigate through the chaos you’re facing daily and discover how to increase your overall well-being and quality of life check out these dates…