Trauma Treatment State of the Art: Understanding Phasic Nervous System Process

Presented by Steven Hoskinson, MA, MAT on 02-05-2010 at 9 a.m. Pacific to 10:30 a.m. Pacific (1:30 p.m. Eastern)

Somatic awareness, or interoception, is an increasingly popular tool for psychotherapy and research, trauma therapy in particular. Peter Levine, PhD, remains the most seminal figure in this burgeoning field, and his approach is called Somatic Experiencing® (SE). Recent developments in the articulation and teaching of SE include the importance of recognizing primary phase transitions based on the clinical assessment of moment to moment shifts of nervous system states. These states include the primary emergency systems of fight, flight, and freeze as well as the more stability-based neural architecture of the orientation/engagement system.

These phases are embedded within the understanding of self-organizing biological systems, ranging from naturally-occurring rhythms of the firing of a single neuron to their aggregation in larger circadian patterns. These rhythms are characterized by patterns of activation-deactivation which, in the appropriate conditions, will organize and synchronize. This organization is either supported or distorted by therapy. Unfortunately, too many traditions in the field of psychotherapy, in failing to appreciate the subtlety of emerging organization, unnecessarily promote catharsis, or work with too-highly activated states. SE sees that the degree to which clients are trending toward physiological organization (known as coherence) is the degree to which they experience well-being and goodness. This is our aim.

Steven Hoskinson has mentored directly with Peter Levine and has successfully trained professionals in this complex process in the US, Europe, and the Middle East. Breaking down the non-linear complexity in his model called “Organic Intelligence,” Hoskinson educates, entertains, and entrains incoherence toward coherence with mindfulness and compassion. His warmth, didactic style, stories, humor, diagrams, and video demonstrations create a learning environment that invites an experiential understanding of the essential simplicity of this healing work. His students are successfully working for the common good with efforts in India, China, Congo, Uganda, Veterans Administrations, with homeless San Franciscans, and in schools and therapy offices around the globe.

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Meet the Presenter

Steven Hoskinson, MA, MAT

Steven Hoskinson, MA, MAT

Steven Hoskinson, MA, MAT, consults and trains internationally under the auspices of Hoskinson Consulting in Encinitas, CA. For over a decade, Steven has taught Somatic Experiencing as Senior International Instructor for the Foundation for Human Enrichment. His research interests are in Creativity, Myth, and Spirituality. Steven’s perspectives include Evolutionary, Developmental, Cognitive-Behavioral, Depth & Dynamic Psychology, and System Approaches all within a mindfulness framework. Other major influences include personal mentoring with Peter Levine, a longstanding mindfulness practice, and over a decade as a practicing Aikidoist. He has consulted on trauma relief projects in the Middle East, India, and the Democratic Republic of Congo. For more information, please visit him here.

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  •, LLC is recognized by the New York State Education Department's State Board for Social Work as an approved provider of continuing education for licensed social workers #SW-0395.
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