Trauma Stewardship: An Everyday Guide to Caring for Self While Caring for Others

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Berrett-Koehler Publishers, 2009 - Health & Fitness - 264 pages
25 Reviews
Working to make the world a more hopeful and sustainable place often means having to confront pain, suffering, crisis, and trauma head-on, day in and day out. Over months and years this takes an enormous emotional, psychological, and physical toll, one that we're often not even fully aware of until the day we feel like we just can't go on anymore. And our well-being and the work we're doing are too important to risk that happening.

This book is for all those who notice that they are not the people they once were or who are being told that by their families, friends, colleagues, or pets. Laura van Dernoot Lipsky takes a deep and sympathetic look at the many ways the stress of dealing with trauma manifests itself: feelings of helplessness and hopelessness, diminished creativity, chronic exhaustion, cynicism, and a dozen more.

To keep from being overwhelmed, we need to respond to suffering in a thoughtful, intentional way not by hardening our hearts or by internalizing others' struggles as our own but by developing a quality of compassionate presence. This is trauma stewardship. To help achieve this, Lipsky offers a variety of simple and profound practices, drawn from modern psychology and a range of spiritual traditions, that enable us to look carefully at our reactions and motivations and discover new sources of energy and renewal. She includes interviews with successful trauma stewards and even uses New Yorker cartoons to illustrate her points.

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Review: Trauma Stewardship: An Everyday Guide to Caring for Self While Caring for Others

User Review  - Jackie - Goodreads

"I used to give a speech in which I talked about what if I were someone who arrived from outer space, and I said, "How do you protect children?" and someone said, we hire 24 year olds right out of ... Read full review

Review: Trauma Stewardship: An Everyday Guide to Caring for Self While Caring for Others

User Review  - Alissa Nelson - Goodreads

A definite must-read for anyone in direct service, healers and caretakers, and people working for social and environmental justice. This normalizes a lot of the negative and self-defeating feelings ... Read full review

About the author (2009)

Laura van Dernoot Lipsky is a trauma social worker, educator, and consultant. She is also the founder and director of a Spanish-language preschool and grade school enrichment program that offers an environmental and social-justice curriculum.

Connie Burk is the executive director of the Northwest Network of Bisexual, Trans, Lesbian and Gay Survivors of Abuse.

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