Masterclass: Dr. Janina Fisher, “Transforming the ‘Living Legacy’ of Trauma”
Despite having survived, traumatized individuals are left with only a fragmented, confusing sense of what happened. Traumatic reminders continue to keep the trauma ‘alive’ by repetitively re-activating the stress response system and survival defenses. Unaware that these reactions are traumatic memories held in the body, they assume that they are still in danger or somehow at fault.
Without a way to understand sensory and body memories, survivors of trauma come to either distrust themselves or distrust others. They still feel unsafe, still re-experience the same emotions of shame, fear, anger and hopelessness over and over again. Telling the story of what they remember sometimes brings relief but does not resolve the ‘living legacy’ of traumatic reactions that continue to torment the client day after day.
In this presentation, participants will learn how to assess and make sense of trauma-based symptoms, such as dysregulated autonomic arousal, overwhelming emotions and sensations, intrusive images, numbing and disconnection. They will discover how to use psychoeducation to help clients manage these overwhelming symptoms and change their relationship to the traumatic events. In addition, participants will be taught how to integrate neurobiologically-informed treatment techniques into psychotherapy that help resolve the traumatic past and finally put it to rest.