DiscoverFinding MasteryDr. Bessel van der Kolk, Trauma Expert
Dr. Bessel van der Kolk, Trauma Expert

Dr. Bessel van der Kolk, Trauma Expert

Update: 2019-05-08


This week’s conversation is with Dr. Bessel van der Kolk, a clinician, researcher and teacher in the area of posttraumatic stress.

He has spent his career studying how people adapt to traumatic experiences, and has translated emerging findings from neuroscience and attachment research to develop and study a range of potentially effective treatments for traumatic stress.

You might be thinking, “Well I don’t have PTSD, how does this conversation apply to me?”

What you might be surprised to learn is how many of us are affected by trauma but just don’t realize it.

According to Dr. van der Kolk’s research, 75% of Americans suffer from some type of past traumatic experience.

In this conversation, he shares strategies for getting to the root of the trauma.

Trauma comes in many forms and so do people’s responses to it.

What’s important to remember is just because someone looks like they have it all together on the outside doesn’t mean everything’s ok on the inside.

In Dr. van der Kolk’s words:

“Some people adapt amazingly well and win Nobel Prizes or MacArthur Grants because of all the energy they put into just pushing things aside. That doesn't mean that they're necessarily resilient even though they may accomplish amazing things. They may go to bed feeling devastated, lonely, and bereft. Or they may still drink or cut themselves or do other things to manage their body's protesting against stuff. So what you see is not necessarily what you get.”

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Dr. Bessel van der Kolk, Trauma Expert

Dr. Bessel van der Kolk, Trauma Expert