Updated: Oct 5, 2022
Download this newsletter as a printable PDF:
July brought challenges for many as we collectively processed the trauma of the overturning of Roe v. Wade at the end of June and shortly after celebrated American "independence" on the 4th of July amidst the looming recession marked by high gas prices and bad interest rates.
Now more than ever, having personal and individual safety plans is essential, and we created ours this month, outlining our crisis plans and our daily self-care maintenance.
Armed with our care plans, we're pushing ahead into August, choosing to survive and thrive as we build resilience and learn how to implement trauma-informed care in our everyday lives.
In this issue, we process our trauma, discuss self-care, and provide access to additional resources.
The Overturning of Roe v Wade: What To Do Now
Roe v. Wade set a precedent for women's rights, and the overturning of this supreme court case means that many people with uteruses have lost some of their rights, particularly low-income people in the southern and midwest United States.
While about half of the states will preserve the right to abortion, the dominos continue to fall in other states where sexist and anti-trans legislation continues to be pushed into law.
Amidst the scramble, we suffer the consequences of this trauma. And many of us are asking, "What power do we have?"
In these moments, we must remember that we do have power.
We can utilize our voting power, practice micro-resistance, assure our safety, assist others, educate ourselves, and donate funds to provide safe abortion access.
This decision was traumatic for many. Remember that you are not alone in this.
Empower Yourself: Your Body, Your Choice
You deserve love. You deserve respect. You deserve free will. And you definitely deserve bodily autonomy.
In the current state of American politics with corrupt governmental leaders, it's normal to feel powerless. And it's okay to not feel okay about what's going on.
Your emotions are valid. But you are not powerless. While the world may say that you don't have the right to make decisions about your body or your life, you do.
You have the power to create real change in the world around you. You're creating change right now by being here and learning about trauma-informed care. Whatever your goal is, you can achieve it because you are strong.
Why is Self-Care Problematic?
Self-Care is Essential
Caring for yourself can take many forms, and we all do self-care without thinking about it. Maybe you prepared and enjoyed a meal with a friend, or maybe you took a shower today or brushed your teeth. These are acts of self-care.
Without self-care, we fall into a depressive state. Getting out of bed, practicing good hygiene, eating regular meals, exercising: without self-care, we don't complete any of these essential tasks of living.
Practicing self-care develops self-love, -trust, -acceptance, and -compassion. Caring for yourself and growing develops confidence, resilience, and social-emotional wellbeing.
So, I love self-care. But, I also hate the word "self-care." Why? Because it's been monetized and transformed into something else.
It's common for people to confuse self-care with leisure because that's how self-care is marketed to us. It's common for us to think that self-care is the same as toxic positivity or that we should only practice self-care to be more productive at work.
The Difference Between Self-Care and Leisure
If we agree that self-care cultivates self-love, then self-care is synonymous with growth and development. We all can improve our relationship with ourselves.
As a form of personal development, self-care doesn't always feel great. It can be challenging, and it can bring up emotions from the past as we face our issues instead of running from them.
Have you ever taken a vacation, come home, and felt drained? Sure, it was nice to visit someplace new, but traveling was stressful, and your work piled up while you were gone. Leisure can create stress.
The Purpose of Self-Care
Self-care reduces stress. The purpose of self-care is to strike a balance in life between acknowledging and processing our negative emotions and shifting our perspective towards positive thought patterns.
Through self-care, we manage stress, celebrate our achievements, and improve our overall wellbeing.
Self-Care is Awareness, Love, and Compassion
We need to shift our language of self-care away from escapism and toward positive change. The purpose of self-care is to help you better cope with stressors in order to preserve your time and energy for what matters most to you in life.
Self-care is taking the time to look inward and ask yourself, "What needs to change?"
Imagine that you struggle with road rage. Sitting in traffic, you become easily irritated. You could accept it and say, "I'm just an angry driver." Or, you could take time to reflect. Through self-care, you learn how to remain calm, creating a safer environment on the road and eliminating a major source of stress. This is self-care.
Trauma-Informed Spotlight: Sandra Bloom
Dr. Sandra L. Bloom is a Board-Certified psychiatrist, Temple University School of Medicine graduate, associate professor at the Dornsife School of Public Health at Drexel University, and founder of Creating Presence.
She has been researching and publishing papers on trauma since the 90s, and her large body of work creates much of the foundation for trauma-informed systems and implementation.
Dr. Bloom developed the Sanctuary Framework, which includes the SELF-model for trauma recovery, which we use in our implementation methods at Chefalo Consulting.
Her book, "Creating Sanctuary," is a must-read for trauma-informed professionals, and her many works provide plenty of reading for curious leaders.
The magnitude of young people's exposure to overwhelming stress is so great and such a threat to national well-being that the issue must be addressed as a major public health concern.
Thank you for reading our first ever Trauma-Informed Newsletter!
July was an exciting month for Chefalo Consulting! We released multiple free resources for the trauma-informed care community, including two downloadable packets, which are available online in our store:
You can also read more about trauma-informed leadership and implementation on our online blog. In July, we discussed:
If you're ready to take a deep dive into trauma-informed leadership and learn how to implement trauma-informed practices into your life and work, enroll in one of Chefalo Consulting's online courses that start next month!
Begins Aug 10 | Wednesdays 10:30 AM CT | 6 Sessions | Cost: $318
Best for: Individuals who are ready to make positive life changes.
Begins Aug 25 | Thursdays 11 AM CT | 10 Sessions | Cost: $949
Best for: Professionals who provide public services, particularly social workers, mental health care providers, and educators.
Stay tuned because there's more coming your way!
Chefalo Consulting's Trauma-Informed Newsletter is a monthly publication that discusses current events, lifestyle changes, and practices from a trauma-informed lens.