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Trauma-Informed Mindfulness Training – Early bird rate ends August 1

September 22, 2017 - September 24, 2017

Trauma-Informed Mindfulness Training - Guelph, ON
Pre-Approved for 20 CE Credits with the
Canadian Counselling and Psychotherapy Association

Integrating principles drawn from neuroscience, attachment theory, Somatic Experiencing and trauma-informed care to increase safety, embodiment, choice, voice and empowerment for trauma survivors

Mindfulness has become a popular tool in many clinicians' toolkits, and the research behind it is overwhelmingly positive.  Trauma survivors often seek out mindfulness or other forms of meditation or spirituality, such as yoga, to support them in their healing journey, or have been "prescribed" these by a professional.  However, without the proper awareness or safeguards in place, these practices can be activating and re-traumatizing for some people, leading to many adverse effects, such as anxiety, panic, psychotic breaks, terror, dissolution of ego boundaries, flashbacks, repressed material resurfacing, and uncomfortable physical sensations associated with unresolved trauma responses.

Others turn to contemplative practices as a form of spiritual bypassing, a way to dissociate and avoid or disconnect from distressing symptoms.  As is true with other approaches, no one modality is a panacea and recognizing when a tool is the right fit or not is important.  This East meets West workshop will review the shadow side of spirituality, and introduce practical principles to adapt mindfulness in a trauma-informed way.  Participants will be introduced to:

  • Integrating a trauma lens of polyvagal theory, attachment theory and psychophysiology into mindfulness
  • Adverse effects and benefits of contemplative practices, in particular for those with early developmental trauma
  • Body memory, the biological cycle of stress activation, defensive responses and completion, and how thwarted self-protective efforts can manifest during meditation
  • Frameworks and principles to support a more nuanced approach to mindfulness, in alignment with staged models of trauma treatment
  • Caveats around breath work practices for trauma
  • Ways to adapt mindfulness to support client safety, choice, voice and empowerment


September 22, 2017
September 24, 2017


Sarah Schlote