Polyvagal Theory

Listen to this week’s repost to reminisce on Bridger’s first episode on Notice That and learn (or relearn) about Polyvagal Theory.

In this episode, Jen and Melissa introduce a new therapist from Beyond Healing Center and discuss a foundational theory in the development of Somatic Information Processing, a model of therapy synthesized and created by Beyond Healing Center. Topics covered in the episode include: 


Three components of Polyvagal Theory (PVT):

1) Autonomic Hierarchy

– Ventral Vagal (or social engagement)

– Sympathetic Activation (flight and fight)

– Dorsal Vagal Shutdown (freeze – immobilization with fear)

2) Neuroception

– Interoception

– Exteroception

3) Co-Regulation

– Importance of therapists’ awareness of their role in this


The shift between states is based on both heart rate variability (HRV) and the individual vagal break which are both shaped by impactful experiences over the course of our lifetime including early attachment figures and various traumas. Similarly, we can reshape the nervous system through correcting faulty neuroception and going back to the forming events in therapy.




Babette Rothschild

The Body Remembers


Bessel Van der Kolk

The Body Keeps the Score


Stephen W. Porges

The Polyvagal Theory: Neurophysiological Foundations of Emotions, Attachment, Communication, and Self-regulation


The Pocket Guide to the Polyvagal Theory: The Transformative Power of Feeling Safe


Deb Dana

The Polyvagal Theory in Therapy


Polyvagal Exercises for Safety and Connection: 50 Client-Centered Practices





Did you know?  After full completion of Beyond Healing Institute’s Somatic Integration and Processing training, each participant can receive 21 NBCC hours. 


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