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Summary

When The Polyvagal Theory was published in 2011, it took the therapeutic world by storm, bringing Stephen Porges's insights about the autonomic nervous system to a clinical audience interested in understanding trauma, anxiety, depression, and other mental health issues. 

The book made accessible to clinicians and other professionals a polyvagal perspective that provided new concepts and insights for understanding human behavior. The perspective placed an emphasis on the important link between psychological experiences and physical manifestations in the body. That book was brilliant but also quite challenging to read for some.

Since publication of that book, Stephen Porges has been urged to make these ideas more accessible and The Pocket Guide to the Polyvagal Theory is the result. Constructs and concepts embedded in polyvagal theory are explained conversationally in The Pocket Guide and there is an introductory chapter which discusses the science and the scientific culture in which polyvagal theory was originally developed. 

Publication of this work enables Stephen Porges to expand the meaning and clinical relevance of this groundbreaking theory.

©2017 Stephen W. Porges (P)2020 Tantor

What listeners say about The Pocket Guide to the Polyvagal Theory

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Dense but Well presented

Not the easiest to follow as it's specialised content, but overall there are good examples for each point

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for anyone who has experienced trauma

Or for anyone who is close to someone who has, this book provides insight you need.

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  • krny1
  • 28-01-22

Skip the glossary!

This book begins with an hour long reading of the terms in the glossary. While I understand why- this book contains a lot of scientific terminology- its a slow start. So I skipped the glossary and moved on to the discussion part of the book where things picked up. This book is full of useful information about polyvagal theory, and only at times got a bit too technical for me, your average traumatized human with a deep interest in healing and understanding. Otherwise I really enjoyed this intro to polyvagal theory and it was easy to see how this would apply in real life. It changed the lens through which I see behavior in general. I will probably listen again to further digest all the information offered.

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  • 310bonita
  • 24-06-21

Polyvagal Theory as a basis of Treatment.

The interview format was interesting in that the application possibilities for therapy were explored. It is also informative to hear how the developer of this theory understands it's practical use. He discusses the changing state of our physical bodies and how that is related to different parts of our neurologic systems. I would highly recommend this book to all MFTS, Social Workers, and Psycholigists, and anyone else who works with trauma, substance use and individuals who are at risk.

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  • crowdd
  • 17-08-21

Very informative and relatable

Hi I am very pleased with the conversational manner in which this book was produced and written. It made a potentially difficult subject understandable and relatable in a way that expanded my understanding of the subject matter

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  • Colleen P.
  • 26-08-21

Oh. Dear. God. NO. 😄

I bought this thinking "pocket guide" meant less technically dense and more digestible for non-clinicians / "self-healers." NOPE. Couldn't even make it past chapter 1. I tried, I really did. 😄

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  • K. Rucker
  • 24-06-22

"pocket guide" is deceiving title

Enjoyed this book once I got past the first couple of chapters. It's worth the credit if you stick with it. This book really got me thinking about how I can apply this theory to my classroom and interactions with others.