Author Spotlight: Sheri McLaughlin
By Sheri McLaughlin, RPC, CPCA
Sheri McLaughlin is a registered professional counsellor who has suffered many traumatic experiences of her own. In Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Workbook: Practical Help and Information for PTSD, she has combined the depth of her pain and understanding with her focused study of abuse and trauma to offer others a practical strategy to rise above their own traumatic experiences.
She has been thoughtful in developing this workbook while fully understanding the overwhelming challenges fellow survivors often face. Empirical research in the discipline of psychology and neuroscience has demonstrated the importance of being attuned to one’s “self.” From her own personal experience, becoming attuned to her inner world promoted physical and psychological dimensions of well-being, especially when complemented with the practice of mindful awareness and a spiritual walk with God.
Sheri has learned to embrace her inner world with kindness and compassion, and her desire is that all trauma survivors would have this same experience. It is her sincere hope that former victims of trauma would have victory and success in every area of their lives.
Her passions, besides researching and writing, include singing and horses. She loves spending time at the barn.
Q: What inspired you to write this workbook?
A: God’s love of people prompted and inspired me to produce this workbook. In my counselling practice, I listened to women who often hadn’t spoken of their traumatic experiences to anyone. Their feelings and struggles were kept inside them, often for decades, wreaking havoc in their personal and professional lives. I thought that by producing this workbook I could somehow reach and help more people.
Q: PTSD is somewhat of a hot topic in the media today. How is your book different than other books on the same topic?
A: I believe the biggest difference is that I have included God in the process. It is my own personal belief that God created all people and all things. For me it only makes sense that we would include the One who knows us better than we know ourselves. The One who formed us knows us intimately and wants us to be free from emotional anguish.
Q: Who do you think would benefit from your workbook?
A: Anyone who has suffered from trauma would benefit. I would also say that people who love trauma survivors could also benefit from the contents of this book. It could provide understanding and equip them to be able to help others and provide encouragement. Traumatic experiences are a deep source of pain that are often overlooked and minimized.
Q: What are your thoughts and hopes for those who work through your workbook?
A: I hope this workbook will provide the necessary education and tools to alleviate their pain, as well as answer some of the unspoken questions that prevent people from thriving in life.
It’s not an easy process by any means. It’s time-consuming and requires periods of silence and solitude. In my own experience, taking the necessary time to sift through the pain, grieve my losses, and treat myself with empathy and respect has helped me to walk away from the things that have imprisoned me.
My hope is that all trauma survivors will escape their own prisons.
Q: You mentioned that your book was different because it included God. Did you always believe that God existed and that He could help you?
A: No, I didn’t always believe in God. I developed addictions in my teenage years that stayed with me as a young adult. In my early thirties, my struggle with fear became far too much for me to bear. My neighbour asked me if I believed in God and wanted to know if she could pray for me. I agreed, but I laughed all the way home. That night was the first one in years that I actually slept through the night. I had no nightmares and no familiar feelings of dread and terror.
I do believe we need to educate ourselves to become familiar with the intricacies of how the brain works. I also believe that our hearts have a big part to play in our lives. There is only One who can heal a broken heart.
Q: How long did it take you to produce this workbook?
A: The actual writing and rewriting of this workbook took about a year. It was the education, experiences, and processing that took decades. I often couldn’t put words to the feelings inside of me. I simply didn’t know how.
Through the years I kept track of my progress, and one day I had the idea that maybe what worked for me would work for others.
It may seem like a long time to many people, but I can assure you that it was worth it. I wouldn’t trade my newfound freedom for anything.
To purchase Sheri McLaughlin’s book click here.
About this Contributor:
Sheri McLaughlin is a registered professional counsellor. The main focus in her practice has been working with abuse and trauma. She has thoughtfully developed Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Workbook: Practical Help and Information for PTSD with a full understanding of the overwhelming challenges fellow survivors often face. Her desire is for all trauma survivors to take the necessary time to heal and get well. She hopes former victims will experience victory and success in every area of their lives.