Making sense of other people’s resistance: shame, blame and fierce curiosity

Over the past decade, public understanding of the processes of trauma has expanded significantly.  However, awareness does not always bring change, which can feel frustrating, confusing and exhausting for campaigners.

How can we make sense of such resistance? Why are systems and individuals often reluctant to adjust policy and practice in a way that supports  prevention, healing and well-being?

Developmental psychologist Dr Suzanne Zeedyk will address these questions by exploring the powerful ways in which shame and blame function to protect people from engaging. She argues that resistance is predictable, and she works to help advocates of trauma-informed practice make sense of this response. Her talk will draw on  historic and contemporary examples of change, both of which offer valuable lessons in how best to tackle change for the future. She will share the personal strategy she uses when confronted by resistance: she steps into Fierce Curiosity.

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