From Trauma to Enlightenment: Self-Therapy in Twelve Steps

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My colleague Frederick Timm and I wrote and self-published (April, 2009) a 44-page booklet on doing self-therapy.  Its philosophy is condensed and distilled into twelve sequential steps.  Each step has its own chapter, followed by a series of step-specific tools and questions for enhancing your self-therapy experience. Also included are ten general tools for doing self-therapy and a list of 30 self-therapy slogans—and an explication of each.

Happy inner traveling!

There are two ways to purchase this book.  The easier and less expensive allows you to have it immediately, via a downloadable PDF (with Paypal), for $4.99.

The second (and more expensive way) is to order a hard-copy, with Paypal, by clicking here.  The cost within for shipping within the USA is $15 ($12 + $3 shipping & handling).  The cost for shipping outside the USA is $30 ($12 + $18 s+h).

20 thoughts on “From Trauma to Enlightenment: Self-Therapy in Twelve Steps

  1. HI Daniel, I recently downloaded your book and was curious about what led you to adopting the 12 steps as a template in self therapy for trauma?

    • Hi Larry,
      I was in Al-Anon when I was younger so I was well-versed in the traditional 12 steps, and liked certain things in their flow. But I saw a lot of limitations in them, so these 12 steps in this book are very different from them — profoundly different in most cases.

      • Hi Daniel,

        Thanks for your reply. After watching some of your YouTube videos and reading some of your posts I appreciate your honesty.
        Full disclosure for myself; I have been clean and sober in AA for several years, 35 this month to be excact. Without question the steps, AA and the people in AA have saved my life. I can’t overstate that fact or that I could not even begin to look at, let alone deal with my childhood trauma until I had honestly worked through the steps and had some lengthy recovery under my belt. Having said that, I do see what you are talking about in AA and in myself regarding trauma recovery and the shortcomings of AA in that regard. I really started dealing with my childhood trauma in therapy many years ago. In fact before I got sober. As you might imagine not much recovery there! It did, in retrospect I believe, keep me alive long enough to get sober and begin my recovery process however.
        I have been to some degree looking and reflecting on the damage that was done to me in my childhood through the years in therapy outside of AA. However, It has only been in the last 3 years or so that I have been addressing my trauma from the CPTSD point of view through therapy and a good book called “Complex PTSD from Surviving to thriving” by Pete Walker. This has been very helpful as I have learned new ways to deal with triggers, and ways of taking care of myself.
        I just want to quickly state my view on AA, the twelve steps and my recovery both in regard to alcoholism and my recovery from childhood abuse and neglect.
        I have never in my experience been told that I had to do anything in AA. I have had things suggested to me, some worked some did not. My view has been and continues to be that I take what works for me and I leave the rest. As I have grown in my sobriety and I become more discerning as to what really works for me I am also able to let go of things that no longer work and keep the things that do.
        I view my recovery from childhood trauma in the same light. As I learn to trust my instincts I am better able to recognize what works and what doesn’t.
        I am also gaining in self confidence as a result.
        I greatly appreciate, and have benefited from your writing and videos. At the same time I find that AA, the twelve steps and meetings are a place for me to continue my recovery and to be of service. This and my recovery from trauma only enhance my life and give it meaning.
        I had so little of that for many many years and was really just hanging on.

        This is of course only my experience thus far and more will be revealed as they say.

        Thank you again for your honesty and courage as it has benefited my greatly .


  2. Hi Daniel, may I know who should and should not get this book? Does this book help in addressing adulthood trauma effectively, particularly trauma experienced in the workplace?

    • Hi Jan,
      The focus is mostly on healing childhood trauma, not trauma in the workplace…
      Just so you know!
      wishing you the best,

  3. Hi Daniel!

    (Sorry in advance for my bad english tho)
    I’ve just purchased your book, I find your videos so hepful through my journey on self-knowledge and hope your book does as well as listen to you.
    I saw that lack on a version translated to spanish, so I’ll be gladly to help! although I can’t say a date to begin, college is first and there’s no a good communication between students and teachers now on isolation, but I’ll try to do it as soon as posible.
    Hope you’re doing fine!

  4. Hi Daniel,

    I look forward to reading your book. I find my childhood experiences very close to my own. You are the first person who has been so frank and truthful about the under belly of the society and families.
    It is amazing that although most people can acknowledge this phenomenon, they clearly decide not only to turn a blind eye but also deride those who speak up and label them as dissident. Those same people will speak up for other human right violations as sexual, racial or economical. Hence it has always been a astonishing case to understand for a person like me and you make things crystal clear as no one else has ever done. Denying that a crime has been done is as bad as the act of crime itself and hence the society reinforces the trauma of abused children.
    In your videos you often mention that therapy is also useful. Do you know of any good therapists in this area.
    Finally are you active on social media as facebook so that people like me can connect with you.

    • Hi Shaun — thanks for your comment. Hmm, at the moment I know very few therapists I’d comfortably refer people to, however, I don’t know what location you’re in — maybe I know one where you are… Meanwhile, warm greetings! Daniel

      • Hi Daniel,

        warm greetings!!
        my location is near St Louis. Although online therapy is also worth it , if someone is willing. I guess the important consideration is that the therapist understands the harm of neurotoxins. I viewed your recommendation of the swedish and finnish centres. It seemed like a very good option, however since I am in the USA and working I am unable to travel there. My email is
        I also gather from your videos that you value self therapy very highly, using dream therapy , journalling and grieving. I also use journalling in my life. I think undergoing a traumatic childhood results in creating a negative belief system on the whole in a person. A person’s belief system is skewed to view the world as either a “dog eat dog” place or a “highly demanding place”. I suppose the extent of the childhood trauma would determine the extent of damage, however the implications are profound in the areas of personal relations to work relation to various phobias and paranoias. Would be great if you could do a video on phobias/paranoias someday.
        Thanks again, and have a great day.

  5. Hey, Daniel!

    I know it’s not simple to give a “right” answer to this kind of question (specially for someone you don’t know), but I don’t know where else to look for the answer, so…

    I’ve been struggling with porn addiction for ~4 years and occasional suicidal thoughts since I was very young. Most of my life I didn’t want to go to a therapist because I didn’t want my family to know about my problems. Now I could see an online therapist, but I will probably only have money to pay for one in the next year.

    Those years of failures are increasing my doubts about my capacity to do this on my own, but nonetheless I’d like to ask:
    do you think there’s some degree of trauma and addiction that one cannot solve himself and most likely needs external help? Because I think I’m close to that, but maybe that’s not true. Maybe it’s just my trauma creating this self-doubt… If you think I can probably still do this on my own, could you give me a recommendation about where to start my self-therapy? Would this book be a good start?

    Thanks for all the content you’ve been creating here!
    I know my question is not simple to answer, but I’d highly appreciate if you could give me some general advice.
    And I’m sorry if this is not the kind of comment you’d want to receive here.
    Again, thanks for your time.

      • Hi Caio. Oh — I just read this message. Hope the book is proving useful. And if you wish to have a go translating it into Portuguese just let me know and I’ll send you an MS Word copy that would probably make it easier. Warm greetings — Daniel

    • Hi Caio,
      greetings. I can’t say if my self-therapy book would be helpful to you, but I have seen that for a lot of people a trauma history is one component of a porn addiction — so it might help in some ways. I have been told there are some good books on the web for curing a porn addiction, but I haven’t read them and don’t specifically know what they are… Meanwhile, about doing things all on one’s own: I think it helps to have allies, and has helped me in a big way. and I consider it part of self-therapy — finding and developing these allies. best of luck on your journey! Daniel

  6. Dear Daniel,
    Reading “From Trauma to Enlightenment” was life- changing for me. The steps have questions that encourage self-reflection, and offer a template I could make my own. It began a journey of inner healing that’s been difficult, yet freeing.
    I think I’m finding my true self.
    Thank you for caring enough to write something so wonderful.

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