This week’s conversation is with Dr. Bessel van der Kolk, a clinician, researcher and teacher in the area of posttraumatic stress.

He has spent his career studying how people adapt to traumatic experiences, and has translated emerging findings from neuroscience and attachment research to develop and study a range of potentially effective treatments for traumatic stress.

You might be thinking, “Well I don’t have PTSD, how does this conversation apply to me?”

What you might be surprised to learn is how many of us are affected by trauma but just don’t realize it.

According to Dr. van der Kolk’s research, 75% of Americans suffer from some type of past traumatic experience.

In this conversation, he shares strategies for getting to the root of the trauma.

Trauma comes in many forms and so do people’s responses to it.

What’s important to remember is just because someone looks like they have it all together on the outside doesn’t mean everything’s ok on the inside.

“People think that trauma is an event that happened a long time ago. That’s not really what the trauma is. The trauma is that your body right now keeps feeling as if that past event is happening.”

In This Episode:

  • The ways in which the mind and body are affected by trauma
  • Are all types of trauma the same?
  • 75% of Americans suffer from some type of past traumatic experience… how do most people choose to respond to it?
  • How to help athletes move on from traumatic losses such as the Seahawks Super Bowl defeat
  • Why he’s bullish on EMDR Trauma Therapy
  • How to build better connections and increase the frequency in which you feel safe with others
  • The first things he teaches people: spend time in silence and experience group flow
  • How does he define success?
  • Why true geniuses in the world have all been traumatized
  • What is the dark side of mastery?
  • What is he most hungry for?
  • His philosophy: Allow yourself to know what you know and feel what you feel
  • His thoughts on mastery

 

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Trauma Expert

Bessel van der Kolk is a Dutch psychiatrist, author and educator based in Boston, USA. Since the 1970s his research has been in the area of post-traumatic stress.