Trail Notes

Co-dependency: Staying in it with a narcissist

The term ‘narcissist’ is carelessly thrown around a lot these days, used to describe every minor instance of self-absorption. Narcissism, as psychotherapist Dr. Ross Rosenberg points out, lies along a spectrum with healthy narcissism at one end and malignant narcissism at the other. In the context of this subject, it is someone who “over-focuses on … Continue reading Co-dependency: Staying in it with a narcissist

Co-dependency and the Victim archetype (Part 3)

Cultivating forgiveness We’ve all heard incredible stories of forgiveness. Consider Nelson Mandela who forgave his captors after 27 years of imprisonment and torture. Or Gandhi, who sacrificed six years for his involvement in protesting the British colonial government in India. While these two men inspire us to forgive, it necessary to understand ‘instant and complete’ … Continue reading Co-dependency and the Victim archetype (Part 3)

Co-dependency and the Victim archetype (Part 2)

Who is in the building? Caroline Myss (2008) writes about the victim archetype in her book, Entering the Castle. She presents the two forms of the victim—the shadow and the light—in the metaphor of a building. The ground floor is dirty, unkempt, chaotic, and very much about 'survival.' When you enter the building and take … Continue reading Co-dependency and the Victim archetype (Part 2)

Co-dependency and the Victim archetype (Part 1)

“All the world's a stage, And all the men and women merely players; They have their exits and their entrances, And one man in his time plays many parts.” Shakespeare was the most revelatory of writers, employing theatrical scenarios to cast light on the darker side of human nature, including victimization. His victims have in … Continue reading Co-dependency and the Victim archetype (Part 1)

How to bring safety to the body after trauma

Your Autonomic Nervous System apprenticeship starts here. Veterans, children who have experienced abuse or neglect, and others who have suffered single event trauma are often left with emotional and psychological scars. Despite decades of effort, there are no clear-cut answers about how to heal them.Pills, talk therapy, and support groups help some people but not … Continue reading How to bring safety to the body after trauma

Rejection: How to move from ‘hamster’ to harmony

Most of us were born into a tribe. We were loved and loved ourselves. We clearly communicated our needs (typically through crying) and happily accepted the love and care we received because we instinctively knew we deserved it. But just for a moment, imagine if that wasn’t the case? That you were not born into … Continue reading Rejection: How to move from ‘hamster’ to harmony

Trauma and that ‘soul feeling’

Image: "Soul" via Pixar Childhood trauma has been a hot topic for discussion in the psychological world since Dr. Stephen Porges and Dr. Bessel van der Kolk dropped their body-based theories in the 1990s. While traditional talk (cognitive) modalities were able to effectively address many mental and emotional health challenges, somatic psychologists believed they could … Continue reading Trauma and that ‘soul feeling’

Biological rudeness or simply survival?

Unintentional moments of disconnection happen when there is a violation of neural expediencies. Whether micro-moments that register like a blip on a radar screen or lingering stretches of disengagement, the experience of disruption is unsettling at a body level. Biological rudeness, a term coined by psychiatrist Dr. Stephen Porges, best describes the responses of fight, … Continue reading Biological rudeness or simply survival?

Navigating the minefield of traumatic transference

When we enter any relationship, we assume the person will think, feel, and behave in ways that replicate our life experiences. This includes all kinds of assumptions and expectations about how the other person will act and how the relationship will unfold. Sigmund Freud named it transference. When Freud initially encountered transference in his therapy … Continue reading Navigating the minefield of traumatic transference