Mervin Smucker. A Stress Inoculation Training (SIT) Approach to Trauma and PTSD

Stress inoculation training focuses on teaching a traumatized individual to develop more effective coping skills with a particular focus on learning better problem-solving and anger control strategies, as well as self-calming, self-soothing, and relaxation techniques. Examples of techniques used in stress inoculation training include: early identification of anxiety-provoking cues and use of appropriate coping skills, thought-stopping, Beck/Ellis cognitive restructuring, guided self-dialogue, deep muscle relaxation plus breathing retraining, listening to relaxation and/or guided imagery tapes, biofeedback, social skills training, and distraction.

Mervin Smucker


Mervin Smucker (2016). Post-Imagery Rescripting SUDS Homework Form.

The Post-Imagery Rescripting SUDS Homework Form is designed to assist the client while listening to the audiotaped recording of an imagery rescripting session.

Post-Imagery Homework: Listen daily to audiotape of entire Imagery Rescripting session for one week. Record date and time of each audiotape listening session.

Record Subjective Units of Distress (SUDS: 0 – 100) at the beginning and end of listening to the audiotape. Also record the peak (highest) SUDS experienced while listening to the audiotape.

Self-administer the Post-Imagery Questionnaire (PIQ-A or PIQ-B) immediately after listening to the audiotape and record the total PIQ score.

Mervin Smucker

Mervin Smucker (2016). Meaning, Story and Psychotherapy-1.

Our minds crave stories to make meaning of events around us. If we cannot find available stories that produce a satisfactory explanation for a troubling event, our minds will create them—much as spiders spin webs—in an attempt to capture meaning. Many times these “self-created” stories draw on deeper narratives stemming from our perceptions of past life experiences, which we have internalized and of which we are often not fully aware. These deeper narratives have a profound effect on the cognitive and emotional templates we develop, which in turn can have a profound influence on our overall wellbeing, as well as on our worldview and how we interpret our lives.  Psychotherapy is, in part, about uncovering, confronting, and modifying the underlying stories we tell ourselves.

Mervin Smucker

Mervin Smucker (2015). Developing Positive Introjects

Because childhood trauma victims often have developed hostile introjects resulting from their traumatic experiences, having imaginary “therapeutic” conversations with important support people (e.g., a therapist, counselor, coach, teacher, mentor) can be useful in helping individuals to develop positive introjects that compete with and eventually replace the old negative, hostile introjects. The new positive introject is essentially a positive internal representation of the support person that, when visually activated or “summoned up”, can have a calming/soothing effect on the individual’s mood – especially during times of emotional distress – and which eventually becomes a permanent part of the individual’s schematic internal representation of self. The goal for trauma victims is not only to develop an enhanced ability to self-calm and self-soothe when feeling upset, but also to develop stronger “shock absorbers” so that they can better absorb the daily “knocks” of life without being thrown into a major crisis whenever they “go over a bump on the road

Mervin Smucker

Mervin Smucker (2015). Haiku Learning’s creative integration of Harmony, Simplicity, and Community to extend classroom learning.

Haiku Learning is about making teaching and learning online as easy as possible, whether it’s in a blended or virtual classroom.  Through the use of technology Haiku Learning provides a Learning Platform that is easy to use, easy on the eyes, and easy on the budget. Haiku’s modus operandi is to listen to the needs of teachers, students, and parents and to have an open exchange and sharing of ideas about how to best accomplish their goals, the result of which is a digital learning platform that evolves to do support teachers and students in an elegant, user-friendly format.  Haiku Learning partners with other service providers to ensure the best value to those who use Haiku.

Mervin Smucker