For those of us who live in the United States, this is Thanksgiving week; a time set aside to say “Thank
you” for life’s blessings. A time to show our appreciation. But for those of you still reeling from betrayal
trauma, it marks the beginning of a difficult holiday season. When your heart is breaking, it can feel
impossible to spread the holiday cheer. It becomes more about simply trying to survive the season.

But what if I told you that thanksgiving—gratitude—could actually help your heart and mind heal?

That you don’t need to paste on a pretend smile to keep family members happy. Instead you can do it to help yourself heal. Might that make it easier to get through the holidays this year? And what if I told you there’s scientific proof? Would you be curious?

I hope you answered “yes” to that last question, so you’re willing to read on. And that you’re at least
mildly curious to hear what I’m talking about, because I’m for sure eager to share this new-to-me
discovery with you.

Recently, I began researching how to help highly traumatized clients heal from panic attacks and
anxiety. I needed more and better tools to help them take back their power and their lives. And as I
searched online, I made an amazing discovery. I found a nonprofit, scientific organization called
HeartMath™, and I want to help you discover it, too. Their work is based on 29 years of “…scientific
research conducted at the HeartMath Institute on the psychophysiology of stress, emotions, and
the interactions between the heart and brain….” “The HeartMath system empowers people to self-regulate their emotions and behaviors to reduce stress….”[1]

“Self-regulate?” We all know how hard that skill is to find and use, especially around triggers and during
difficult times like the holidays. But I invite you to take three minutes and watch this video. It explains
the science and value we can gain from a simple, free, easy-to-do exercise that can give us something to smile about this holiday season, if nothing else can do that for us:

With your healing at heart,



self aware

I hadn’t thought much about the role self-awareness plays in our healing until I asked a former client what treasure she had found because of her healing journey. Her answer? “Self-awareness.” But I haven’t stopped pondering that conversation since. And I’ve discovered she is absolutely correct! Learning to live in self-awareness can be labeled a treasure, but it is also a necessary tool for our healing. How is it so essential?you might ask, just as I did. But now I know the answer to that question.