Posts Tagged With: dealing with trauma

Day 2519: It’s safer than it feels

When people with a history of trauma (which seems to include everybody, these days) are feeling shaky, anxious, and fearful, I often encourage them to focus on this helpful phrase:

It’s safer than it feels.

Yesterday, our scaredy-cat Harley was safer — even if he didn’t feel like it — when our new vet, Dr. Jo, came for a house call.


Michael, who wanted everybody to feel safer, had spent days developing a plan for how Dr. Jo could safely examine Harley and give him his shots.  When Dr. Jo arrived, Michael was closed up in Aaron’s bedroom with Harley, having set up the room so there was (as Michael said), “Nowhere to run, nowhere to hide.”


Dr. Jo helped us all feel safer as she quickly, efficiently, and kindly examined Harley and gave him his yearly shots, declaring our “chunky” cat safely healthy.  Miraculously, Harley felt safe enough to be in plain sight minutes after we allowed him to escape from that safe room.


In the past, when Harley felt unsafe, we would see neither hide nor hair of him for hours, if not days.

Now that we have a great vet who makes house calls, we all feel safer. Can you tell that I was feeling safer when I took the rest of the photos in today’s blog?








Who feels safe enough, here and now, to dance to “Nowhere to Run” by Martha Reeves and the Vandellas?

I hope it feels safe enough for you to express your thoughts and feelings about this “It’s Safer Than It Feels” post, below.

Thanks to everybody who makes this world feel safer, including YOU.




Categories: personal growth, photojournalism, Psychotherapy, recommendation | Tags: , , , , , , , | 23 Comments

Day 1260: A Gallery of Helpful Information

Yesterday, as I was learning a gallery of helpful information at a group psychotherapy conference held at a Boston college, I saw this:


Even though that gallery is blank, I think it’s a helpful invitation to imagine how each of us might fill that in with our own, hard-won wisdom.

Here and now, I write these on my personal gallery of helpful information:

  • People can keep learning and growing, every day of their lives.
  • Horrible tragedies happen in this world.
  • Human beings are hard-wired to connect with others.
  • All healing is mutual.
  • It helps me to forgive those who have hurt me in the past.
  • I am neither as unimportant or as important as I fear.
  • We are all the experts on our own experiences.
  • Love is all around us, even if we don’t sense it.
  • Worry sucks.
  • You can always make a new friend.
  • Everything that has ever happened to me in the past is in my mind, body, and soul.
  • It helps me to be in the here and now.
  • All the different parts of me are valuable.
  • Nobody can predict the future.
  • I can transform and let go of fear.
  • We are all alone and also connected to everything, at the same time.
  • Because of our survival instincts, we will automatically focus on threats first.
  • Often, it’s safer than it feels.
  • Most people, if they knew me, would wish me well.
  • I love my work.
  • I’m glad my son is going to college in Scotland, even though I’m going to miss him so.
  • Death does not conquer us.
  • Shit happens.
  • Beauty happens.
  • I wish my life could be a musical.
  • If I like myself, it’s easier to like others.
  • I like myself!
  • I would love to be dancing with Gene Kelly, right now.


Here’s a  gallery of some recent photos I haven’t shared with you yet  (presented in helpful chronological order):


















What would you include in your personal gallery of helpful information?

Thanks to the Northeastern Society for Group Psychotherapy (NSGP), Peter J. Taylor and Roger Saint-Laurent, the Tony Awards, Gene Kelly,  and all  who helped me create  today’s  gallery of helpful information, including you!

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , | 20 Comments

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