One of the hardest things I have encountered while treating trauma is feeling avoidance from clients. Feeling avoidance is the client’s attempt at avoiding any feelings that they deem unpleasant. Feelings can be intense for the client and helping them navigate them can be a struggle for us as trauma treatment professionals, if the client is unwilling to explore their feelings.
We have all had that client who says they don’t know what they are feeling or they slide more to the side of saying everything is just fine. I like to think of these types of clients as living in “numb land” or “happy land” but never anywhere in between.
When clients struggle with feeling avoidant, it can really put a halt to progress in treatment. It can also leave you and the client in what feels like a tug of war as it relates to the direction of treatment. None of this is pleasant for you as the treatment professional, or for your client. It can be very damaging to the treatment relationship or leave you both feeling stuck and defeated if left unaddressed.
In this week’s vlog, I provide a few things you can do to navigate feeling avoidance and see it as a part of the treatment process versus a threat to the treatment process. Join me by clicking the vlog below.