We developed this poster over 9 months of working closely with Dr. Stephen Porges PhD to provide the viewer with a global understanding of the central aspects of the theory in a single view. This came about through necessity, as we had been studying the theory for about 10 years, and needed to be able to explain it to clients holistically and quickly. The Polyvagal Theory re-writes our understanding of the relationship between the Autonomic Nervous System and behavior. When we (and our clients) are able to read and feel this living map, we can incorporate its many insights into our understanding of self and others. We have created 3 versions of the poster to meet different needs. For those in an educational setting, we have created a version of the poster where states are illustrated by a person. For those utilizing the poster in therapy settings, where such an image might be triggering to clients who have experienced trauma, we’ve created a version that shows the states with water, and one that shows the states with dogs (a social mammal).
Developed in partnership with Dr. Stephen Porges, PhD, and consultation with Deb Dana, LCSW, the poster is conceptually and neuro-anatomically accurate.