Sanctuary’s Four Goals
Goal #1 – Be Present
Trauma can rob us of the ability to simply be present to the here and now. Intrusive thoughts, memories, and sensations make us feel unsafe and make it hard to focus on the things we value, like relationships and meaningful work. One of our goals at Sanctuary is to teach you the skills to bring yourself back to the here and now, a task that can seem impossible for PTSD sufferers.
Goal #2 – Expand Capacity
Traumatic events, by definition, overwhelm our nervous systems and shatter our understanding of the world. Because of the overwhelming nature of trauma, the nervous system’s inherent reaction is an equally forceful response. For those who develop PTSD, urges to flee, fight, or freeze are replayed by the body long after the trauma has passed. These feelings are extremely uncomfortable and may lead to numbing behaviors, in the form of maladaptive coping strategies in order to stop the unwanted feelings. These maladaptive coping strategies may include substance abuse, eating disorder behaviors, and self-harm. Healing necessitates the digestion of overwhelm, and the expansion of capacity for emotions, and experiences at the somatic level.
Goal #3 – Live What You Value
One of the ways people try to cope with the feelings and memories of trauma is to avoid people, places, and activities that might remind them of the trauma. It makes sense that if you were hurt in a certain place or by a certain person that you wouldn’t want to see that person or return to that location. Over time, lives can get smaller as PTSD survivors cut out activities and people they once enjoyed and valued, in order to feel safe. We will help you identify what you value and engage in welcoming valued actions and relationships into your life.
Goal #4 – Change Ways of Thinking That No Longer Serve You
When traumatic events occur, they cause us to question the beliefs that we’ve had about ourselves, others, and the world in general.
From childhood, many people are led to believe that bad things don’t happen to good people—that good behavior and kindness will result in positive outcomes. Traumatic events confound the very foundation of our view—about ourselves and the world.
At Sanctuary we will help you examine what you took away from your traumatic experiences and explore whether or not these new beliefs are helpful and true.