What Is Trauma?

Discover how to heal from toxic shame  and restore your vibrancy, self-esteem, resilience and self-reliance.

About Trauma

Childhood trauma isn't something you just get over as you grow up. Pediatrician Nadine Burke Harris explains that the repeated stress of abuse, neglect and parents struggling with mental health or substance abuse issues has real, tangible effects on the development of the brain.

Symptoms of Shame

  • Untrusting of others - or themselves (insecure)
  • Self-abusive or violent towards others
  • Exhausted/void of life-force or unable to sit still
  • Dead behind the eyes or wild/wide-eyed
  • Prone to panic attacks or collapse
  • Disempowered or overpowering
  • Disengaged from life and others
  • Angry or emotional
  • Dissociative or hyper-vigilant
  • Fearful - feel unsafe in their bodies or the world
  • Adrenaline junkies
  • Volatile or shut down
  • Disconnected or clingy and needy
  • Socially anxious or promiscuous

Like other developmental trauma, Shame also informs how we come to see ourselves and others. In doing so, it forms our beliefs about who we are and how others relate to us. Over time, these conscious and embodied beliefs may manifest into toxic shame. When shame is internalized and identified with, we spiral into self-loathing and form the belief that we are without value or purpose and therefor unlovable. Toxic shame debilitates us and isolates us from humanity.

Transmuting toxic shame into healthy shame, releases clients from mind fog, isolation, social anxiety, self-loathing, lack of confidence, self-sabotage and perfectionism, and all pervasive nervous system shut down. Truly healing and releasing the underpinning of toxic shame, by transmuting it into healthy shame, restores vibrancy, self-esteem, resilience and self-reliance.

Some people may not even realize that they have unresolved trauma. Whether it's due to dissociation or other avoidance strategies, trauma and trauma symptoms often go unaddressed in trauma survivors. In this video, triple board-certified psychologist Dr. Judy Ho breaks down 5 physical signs of trauma that often go unnoticed.

Symptoms of PTSD

  • Self-regulation through sex, drugs, alcohol, exercise, prayer, meditation, food, TV, etc.
  • Avoiding memories
  • Keeping busy
  • Avoiding situations that remind you of the trauma
  • Repressing memories (being unable to remember aspects of the event)
  • Feeling detached, cut off and emotionally numb
  • Being unable to express affection
  • Feeling there’s no point in planning for the future
  • Being easily upset or angry
  • Disturbed sleep
  • Irritability and aggressive behavior
  • Lack of concentration
  • Reliving aspects of the trauma
  • Hopelessness
  • Extreme alertness
  • Panic
  • Anxiety
  • Being easily startled
  • Reliving aspects of the trauma
  • Vivid flashbacks (feeling that the trauma is happening all over again)
  • Intrusive thoughts and images
  • Nightmares
  • Intense distress at real or symbolic reminders of the trauma

Trauma Based Syndromes

  • Fibromyalgia
  • Crohn's Disease
  • Lupus
  • Irritable Bowel
  • Epstein Barr
  • Colitis
  • Tourette's
  • Chronic Pain
  • Restless Leg
  • Chronic Fatigue

How Somatic Experiencing Can Help Trauma

In this video, you will learn about the physiological basis of trauma and how Somatic Experiencing® (SE™), developed by Peter A. Levine, PhD, helps distressed individuals recover a sense of well being, stability and vitality.

This video tells the compassionate story of the healing process of Ray, a marine who had been injured by two explosive devices (IEDs) and diagnosed with both severe PTSD and Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI). He was brought to see Peter A. Levine after developing chronic pain, Tourette-like convulsions, cognitive problems and insomnia due to night terrors.

Begin Healing