Ep. 1 - Introduction

Welcome to the OACCUs course: 'Finding Balance: Exploring Polyvagal Theory for Resilience After Cancer.' In these 5 episodes course, we delve into the fundamental principles of Polyvagal Theory and its practical applications in our daily lives. By understanding how our autonomic nervous system influences our emotional states, we can cultivate greater self-awareness and resilience. We'll explore three key exercises designed to help you recognize and manage your internal states effectively. With accompanying templates available, you'll have the tools to apply Polyvagal Theory to your own life, fostering emotional well-being and personal growth. Join us to discover actionable insights that can transform your approach to self-care and relationships.

Ep. 2 - Polyvagal Theory

In this episode we will present the Polyvagal Theory and its application in daily life. Developed by Dr. Stephen Porges, this theory offers profound insights into how our nervous system responds to stress and safety cues. Through engaging stories and practical exercises, we'll explore the three autonomic states—Green, Yellow, and Red Lights—that shape our emotional experiences and behaviors. Join us as we journey through this transformative framework, empowering you to recognize, understand, and navigate your internal landscape with greater resilience and compassion. We also provide an example that can help you to directly feel these 3 autonomic states.

Ep. 3 - Neurological Pathways

In this episode, we delve into the neurological pathways of the Polyvagal Theory, emphasizing the critical role our perception of danger plays in shaping our emotional and behavioral responses. While we'll touch on the theory, our focus will be on practical principles that illuminate how our nervous system responds to cues of safety and threat. By understanding these pathways, you'll gain invaluable insights into how to apply Polyvagal Theory in your daily life, fostering greater self-awareness and resilience in navigating life's challenges. Join us as we uncover the intricate connections between perception, emotion, and behavior, empowering you to thrive in an ever-changing world.

Ep. 4 - Emotional and Behavioral Guidelines

In this episode, we explore the emotional and behavioral guidelines intertwined with the Polyvagal Theory, offering essential insights into understanding our experiences and navigating back to the safe green light of emotional equilibrium. Through practical principles and actionable strategies, we illuminate how to recognize and manage our emotional states with greater awareness and intentionality. Join us as we uncover the fundamental principles of the Polyvagal Theory, empowering you to cultivate resilience and well-being in your daily life.

Ep. 5 - Mapping our States and Reactions

In this final episode, we delve into practical exercises to map our autonomic experiences and develop personalized strategies to return to the safe green zone of emotional balance. Throughout this session, we present three transformative exercises designed to deepen your understanding of the Polyvagal Theory and its application in daily life. You can find the templates for these exercises in the following contents of this resource.

Personal Profile Map Template

This is the template for the exercise “Personal Profile Map”. 
Begin taking a deep dive into your personal experience across the three autonomic states (Green, Yellow, and Red Lights). Note down your bodily sensations, emotions, thoughts, behaviors, and attitudes when you find yourself in each state. Then, distill your experience into a single word or short sentence that encapsulates your overall feeling in that state. This exercise provides invaluable insight into your internal landscape, helping you better understand and navigate your emotional responses.

Lights and Shadows Map Template

This is the template for the exercise “Light and Shadows Map”. 
Delve into the specific situations that trigger each autonomic state. For each state, identify typical scenarios or contexts where you commonly experience heightened activation. Then, pinpoint one or two instances where the activation of that particular state is especially intense. By mapping out these triggers, you gain a clearer understanding of the environmental cues and stressors that influence your physiological response, empowering you to proactively manage challenging situations.

Resources Regulation Map Template

This is the template for the exercise “Resources Regualtion Map”. 
Explore practical strategies to foster a sense of safety and return to the calm Green Light state when faced with adversity. For each autonomic state, compile a list of strategies that can help you either remain in or transition back to the safe zone. Consider both individual and interpersonal approaches that resonate with you. These strategies may range from grounding techniques and self-soothing practices to seeking support from loved ones or engaging in meaningful activities. By identifying personalized safety measures, you equip yourself with effective tools for emotional regulation and resilience-building.

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