ONLINE • Trauma-Sensitive Mindfulness: Practices for Safe and Transformative Healing

David Treleaven, Ph.D

January 24–February 7, 2021

Sundays, 11:30 am - 1 pm Mountain Time

  • $225.00 – Standard Tuition

Trauma is highly prevalent. Research tells us that 90% of us will live through a traumatic event, and some will develop debilitating symptoms in its aftermath. The COVID-19 global-pandemic has only increased our awareness about the psychological impacts of adversity and traumatic stress. Mindfulness is also increasingly popular. From online meditation programs to health care settings and grade-school classrooms, people are accessing mindfulness teachings in a variety of different settings.

In this three-part series, best-selling author and trauma professional David Treleaven, Ph.D., will explore the benefits and pitfalls of mindfulness practice when it comes to adversity and trauma. Through lecture, case study, and experiential practice, you’ll discover the reasons meditation can exacerbate symptoms of trauma, and specific modifications you can use to help leverage the power of mindfulness towards trauma healing.

This program takes place over three Sundays, with each session 90 minutes long. By the end of this series you will be:

  • Aware of the reasons meditation can create dysregulation when it comes to trauma
  • Prepared to identify symptoms of traumatic stress and tailor mindfulness practices in a trauma-sensitive way
  • Informed about current empirical research regarding mindfulness and trauma, including evidence-based interventions you can immediately apply in your practice and work
  • Equipped with the tools and modifications to help you work skillfully with dysregulated arousal, traumatic flashbacks, and trauma-related dissociation

Daily Schedule

Three Sundays:  January 24, 31, and February 7. Each session lasts 90 minutes.

Pacific Standard Time — 10:30 am – 12 pm
Mountain Standard Time —11:30 am – 1 pm
Central Standard Time —12:30 pm – 2 pm
Eastern Standard Time — 1:30 pm – 3 pm

Of course, you may join from any timezone.


Session 1 (January 24): Why Trauma-Sensitive Mindfulness?

In this opening session, you’ll be introduced to the topic of Trauma-Sensitive Mindfulness (TSM). We’ll cover contemporary definitions of trauma, current empirical research, and you’ll be guided through an experiential series of TSM practices.
By the end of this session, you will be:
  • Aware of the ways trauma can manifest in contemplative settings
  • Clear about the relevance of trauma-sensitive mindfulness to your personal and professional context
  • Understanding the relationship between individual and systemic forms of trauma
Session 2 (January 31): The Window of Tolerance in Trauma-Sensitive Mindfulness
In the second session, you’ll learn about the Window of Tolerance—a model from neuroscientist Dan Siegel that is an essential principle within TSM work. As you’ll learn, it can help you identify non-verbal signs and symptoms of traumatic stress, and assess whether the mindfulness practices you’re offering someone are safe and effective, or not.
By the end of this session, you will be:
  • Confident in identifying non-verbal signs of traumatic stress in mindfulness practice
  • Equipped with the tools and modifications to help you work skillfully with “dysregulated arousal”
  • Prepared to offer tailored mindfulness instructions in a trauma-sensitive way
Session 3 (February 6): The Double-Edged Sword of Mindfulness Meditation
In the third session, you’ll learn why mindfulness meditation holds both benefits and liabilities for people struggling with trauma. We’ll examine traditional mindfulness practices through the lens of trauma theory, including modifications that support safety and stability for people struggling with trauma in meditation. You’ll also engage in an experiential TSM practice that involves utilizing multiple anchors of attention.
By the end of this session, you will be:
  • Equipped with a series of modifications to help traumatized people modulate the intensity of meditation practice
  • Understanding the role “orientation” plays in TSM
  • Clear about how to use alternate and external anchors of attention


This program will be recorded. Non-downloadable recordings will be available for participants to view for one week after the close of the program.


A number of scholarships are available. Please apply here.  NOTE: as of January 15, all scholarships for this program have been awarded. Thank you for your applications.


Registration will close two hours before the start of the program.

Endorsements for David's book, "Trauma-Sensitive Mindfulness":

“Essential reading for meditation teachers, mental health practitioners, and all those who have suffered from trauma and want to engage on a meditative path in a wise and healing way.”
Tara Brach, Ph.D., author of Radical Acceptance and True Refuge

“A rare combination of solid scholarship, clinically useful methods, and passionate advocacy for those who have suffered trauma.”
Rick Hanson, Ph.D., author of Buddha’s Brain: The Practical Neuroscience of Happiness, Love, and Wisdom

“An essential “upgrade” for anyone who thinks of her or himself as a mindfulness teacher, or is in training to become one.”
Jon Kabat-Zinn, Ph.D., Founder of MBSR and author of Full Catastrophe Living and The Healing Power of Mindfulness


David Treleaven, Ph.D

David Treleaven, Ph.D., is a writer, educator, trauma professional, and author of the acclaimed book Trauma-Sensitive Mindfulness: Practices for Safe and Transformative Healing. David focuses on offering mindfulness providers the knowledge and tools they require to meet the needs of those struggling with trauma. Through workshops, keynotes, podcasts, and online education, he is closely engaged with current empirical research to inform best practices. David is currently a visiting scholar at Brown University and has worked with a number of organizations including The Search Inside Yourself Leadership Institute developed at Google, University of Massachusetts Medical School, The Center for Contemplative Mind in Society, the Institute for Mindfulness South Africa, the UC San Diego Center for Mindfulness, and the Mindfulness Training Institute of Australia and New Zealand.

Program Details

This virtual retreat will be conducted on Zoom. After registration, you will receive an email with simple instructions for downloading and using Zoom on your computer, laptop, or other device. At least 24 hours before the start time, a link to join the retreat will be sent to you via email.