The words “Trauma Informed’ are becoming wide spread and I wanted to share with you what it means and how it is affecting people in an empowering respectful way.
Trauma-informed care shifts the focus from “What’s wrong with you?” to “What happened to you?
If someone is struggling to find ease in any context in life, work, family, relationship, they often become labelled and then ostracised.
It’s not helpful and spirals people deeper into problems, feeling isolated and ‘wrong or bad’
Everyone is a human being doing their best with what they know.
It’s not them that’s the problem.
It’s what they’re doing or how they do things, or their behaviour, that causes the friction. There is a big difference between someone ‘being a failure’ and someone failing at what they’re doing’
Can you get a sense of this?
Problems all too easily become someone’s identity, it becomes ‘who they are’ and they can’t escape.
If we go into a situation to help someone and can’t look at them as a human and only see a problem, we ourselves, are going to have problems.
Trauma informed care is indicative of the recognition that our past experiences shape who we are today. Whether we like it or not our past does shape us. To break from that takes devotion.
In the meantime, it is now being recognised that we can help someone transform or gently move through challenges by addressing experiences in their life which have caused them to stay stuck in limiting mindsets and restricting behaviours.
If an organisation is trauma informed they will be able to recognise signs and symptoms of trauma in clients, staff members, family, and anyone involved in the system. They will have procedures and practices in place to then respond appropriately.
This response can come in the form of directing the individual to the right care, to understanding how to help them maintain healthy relationships at work, in care, with family. Recognition that they may need help with addressing their own health care.
Trauma informed also means staff are alert to, and can reduce burnout and other work-related sick leave issues. A trauma-informed approach to healthcare aims to provide an environment where a person who has experienced trauma feels safe and can develop trust.
When the focus shifts from “What’s wrong with you?” to “What happened to you”? People can detach from the problem and start looking objectively at issues, finding solutions. This also helps to take the emotion out, reduces self criticism, external criticism, judgement. It is a compassionate level of caring and helping.
We see reductions in absence from work due to ill health, mental and physical. Rehabilitation is more effective and efficient. Genuine relationships between families, colleagues, and professionals form.
Great isn’t it?
Trauma informed care means more people are accepted into society in a fitting, kind and respectful manner.
It helps us to focus more easily on what someone can do, on their skill sets and abilities, we all have them!
Focusing on the ‘can’ rather than ‘can’t’ is a liberating, joy filled approach to person-centered therapy, work, play….
A trauma informed organisation or person makes me think of this quote from Hippocrates.
”It is more important to know what sort of person has a disease than to know what sort of disease a person has.”
As you know, in a time when life is becoming automated and spent in the digital, to be able to see people for who they really are is a beautiful thing.