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Post Traumatic Success

Positive Psychology & Solution-Focused Strategies to Help Clients Survive & Thrive.

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This is a book to help clients to transform what happened to them to make them better instead of bitter.

The first book on trauma to combine the theory and practice of positive psychology and solution-focused brief therapy with traditional approaches, this book veers away from a focus on pathology (what is wrong with clients and how to repair the worst) to a focus on what is right with them (and how to create the best)—that is, from post traumatic stress to post traumatic success.

The three R’s of post traumatic success are: Recovery, Resilience and enRichment (post traumatic growth) – concepts depicted by the bamboo plant on the book’s cover. Trauma professionals will learn what it takes to help more survivors benefit more substantively from therapy and how to support their clients in developing longer-term resilience. By practicing the skills in this book, they can increase their clients’ self-efficacy and self-esteem, and make psychotherapy shorter in time, more cost effective and more lighthearted for their clients and themselves.

Written for all professionals and students working with trauma survivors (both adults and children) and their families and friends, it equips readers with practical direction for adopting a more positive approach and expanding their range of available techniques. Over a hundred exercises, thirty-three cases, and forty stories are presented to illustrate and help incorporate this new approach into practice.

It’s about time to turn the tide on treating trauma by shifting the focus from reducing distress and merely surviving to building success and positively thriving.

Audio Interviews
Interview West Coast Trauma Project (2015)
Interview Shrinkrapradio (2015)


“The practical approaches you will find in this volume promise to bring the best of positive psychology to those who need it most.”

Barbara L. FredricksonKenan Distinguished Professor, University of North Carolina

“This wise, generous, highly useful book belongs on the shelf of everyone who works with traumatized people.
Therapists, health care providers, and trauma survivors themselves will draw courage and inspiration from Bannink's clearly described treatment techniques, uplifting case examples, and invaluable practical information, all of which are thoughtfully introduced within the context of a well-balanced, integrative treatment approach.”

Yvonne DolanDirector of the Institute for Solution-Focused Therapy; Author of Resolving Sexual Abuse and One Small Step

“Post traumatic growth is one of the fascinating and inspiring themes within positive psychology.
Bannink describes eloquently how positive psychology and solution-focused strategies can assist clients in coping successfully with traumatic events.
A practical guide I highly recommend”

Prof. dr. Ernst BohlmeijerDepartment of Psychology, University of Twente, the Netherlands

“For far too long, we were ignorant about the sometimes strong aftereffects of trauma on clients' lives.
Then, with the naming and articulating of the diagnosis post-traumatic stress, we became more sensitive to these signs and signals. But like everything, it can be taken too far.
In recognizing and treating trauma aftereffects, our field overlooks that the vast majority of people are resilient and often bounce back from even the most horrific and intrusive traumas.
And, in focusing on the negative aftereffects, we often inadvertently help people see themselves as damaged and unchangeable.
Bannink's Post Traumatic Success finds a nice balance between problem and solution, challenges and change, damage and growth.
Her application of the latest research and methods for strengths- and solution-building can be used for therapists of any persuasion to enhance their effectiveness with people who have lived through extraordinary experiences and help them come out the other side 'strong at the broken places'.”

Bill O'HanlonAuthor of Out of the Blue: Six Non-Medication Ways to Relieve Depression

“Bannink's Post Traumatic Success is a landmark work, and in my mind the most important book on treating trauma and post traumatic stress disorder in the last 20 years.
The book offers a paradigm shift: from thinking about treatment as amelioration of the symptoms by focusing on the trauma - which isn't always successful and can be a slow, painful process - to focusing on exceptions, strengths and resiliencies so that clients may thrive. Integrating current research in positive psychology and solution-focused brief therapy, the book offers concrete and specific interventions that can be used immediately in clinical practice. I highly recommend this book for new and seasoned therapists alike.”

Terry S. TrepperProfessor of Psychology, Purdue University Calumet

“An engaging book. Bannink is versatile in drawing stories and exercises from multiple cultures . . . . The book is easy to read and is packed full of practical ways to be a useful clinician and a positive influence on your client’s futures. . . . Also a useful text for people responsible for human resource departments, those charged with supporting people in emergency services including aid agencies and the military where exposure to potentially traumatic events is inherent in the work-role, and for those who train or teach others to be instrumentally and emotionally useful to others.”

The British Journal of Guidance & Counselling July 2015