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February 21, 2020
11 AM PST  |  12 PM MST |   1 PM CST  |   2 PM EST
Charlene Jones
Writing Trauma, Healing Life

My Impossible Life took 50 years to write and during that time I achieved a double Masters’ Degree in Rhetoric, the art of teaching writing. To finish my book, I had to heal first from being held captive, raped and tortured when I was 16 by two armed felons. Today I live a life of health, ease and joy. I’d like to share some insights on healing and writing that I gained along the way.

Two kinds of writing provide access points for people who have experienced trauma. The first is Trauma Writing. Trauma Writing expresses our internal, solo journey as we connect with our suffering. We are like deep sea divers who venture down to uncharted territory.

We are alone and often lonely and experience deep, powerful emotions in our bodies. Gradually we begin to discover as we dive deep, the water has grown clear and calm. Treasures at the bottom show up as jewels. What formerly terrorized us grows familiar. Most importantly, our suffering begins to have meaning.

Now we begin the second kind of writing, Writing Trauma.

We are standing on the shore, no longer in the water, but pointing to it. Other people want to read our story, so we learn about writing as an art form.

This part of our journey requires a knowledge of the traditional skills of writing, skills that all writers must develop.

Writing Trauma is meant for public reading and assuages the former loneliness.

Of course, time does not always allow a step one, step two approach. But keeping this simple plan in mind does help us focus on where we are at any given moment so we know when to reach for a wet suit and when a dictionary.


Learning Points

  1. You’ll learn more about the difference between Trauma Writing and Writing Trauma.
  2. You’ll discover the most important skill for diving into the deep while you’re Trauma Writing. This skill ensures your psychic safety and positive growth while you are inside Trauma Writing.
  3. You will be guided in a couple of exercises helpful in engaging the vagus nerve, which shuts down the fight/flight/freeze of the sympathetic nervous system and activates the parasympathetic rest and digest. These are simple brief gestures that may be used any time.
  4. We’ll explore emotions as an imagined geography. Our brains fire in similar ways whether we imagine, or physically experience something.
  5. We’ll examine the role of repetition. Using the mantra from neuroscience “Neurons that fire together wire together,” we’ll discuss how to positively use repetition for writing without re-traumatizing ourselves.


Charlene Jones M.Ed./M.A

I live on a small lake which daily provides me perspective. People who feel stuck or out of whack in their lives often contact me and together we work to ease them toward more flow and more fulfillment. I teach meditation at the local yoga studio Stouffville Yoga Life.

My podcasts of other writers, mostly memoirists, can be accessed on www.soulsciences.net by clicking on Podcasts on the left-hand side of the page.

I have practiced Tibetan Buddhist Vajrayana Tantra Meditation for over 50 years and experienced first hand its power to stabilize and heal life energies. I feel remarkably blessed to have been gifted this particular life.



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