Tyson Bailey, PsyD, ABPP
AS 2021 BEGINS TO WIND DOWN, I have been focusing on recognizing gratitude as much as possible. Fall and winter are frequently a time of significant difficulties for those who share their stories in therapy, as there is a constant pull between what this time of the year is “supposed” to represent and the realities clients have faced, particularly when they think those experiences are their fault. The holidays and moments where spending
more time stuck inside can have a profound impact on the level of distress at any age. Although clients frequently report an understanding of how important it is for me to have time away, I am also acutely aware of the impact of missing one of the most consistent relationships many clients have ever experienced. I recognize that honoring each individual’s story can only be done from a place of personal connection and self-care, yet still notice the pull to adjust my boundaries each year. Talking about this openly with clients has been one of the most important ways I have navigated this over the years, which tends to bring a deeper level of connection even if through more difficult moments. I am grateful for the training that helped me to realize the power of self-disclosure within the therapeutic relationship and the continual encouragement of my support system.
In August, Division 56 completed a vote that I believe will change the course of our organization. We have hired a consulting firm focused on diversity, equity, and inclusion to evaluate the Division’s structure, activities, and governance. Our goal is to ensure that we are identifying and challenging our blind spots and increase our understanding of the ways we are not living up to our mission. Please be on the lookout for ways that you can participate in this process if you are interested. In the meantime, you can also contact Ayli Carrero Pinedo, who is the chair of the I-DARE task force, to get involved. We are fortunate to have a passionate leader at the helm of this project and Ayli is going to need help from our membership in order to gather information and institute important changes.
After two successful cycles of the Division 56 Cultivating Healing, Advocacy, Nonviolence, Growth, and Equity (CHANGE) grant, we are thrilled to announce another round coming soon. Watch for listserv announcements and check our website’s grant page for further details. This project would not have been possible without our passionate student and ECP leaders, please join me in sending thanks and congratulations to Katy Lacefield and Ayli Carrero Pinedo for their time, energy, and vision in creating this grant and helping us to support inclusive research. Further, we are excited to announce that we have committed to funding this grant continually through the American Psychological Fund (APF), which will begin in fall of 2022.
We will also be discussing future in-house grants with the consultant mentioned above to determine the most effective ways to provide funding opportunities for inclusive research well into the future.
The Division 56 journal Psychological Trauma: Theory, Research, Practice, and Policy continues to break all expectations that we have set. We are thankful for the leadership of Steve Gold (founding editor) and Kathy Kendall-Tackett (current editor), for creating a publication that provides an impressive array of trauma-informed scholarship. The journal has done so well that we just authorized a permanent increase in the page numbers and two special issues for next year. This will allow us to publish articles faster than we have in the past and meet the ever-increasing demands for our journal. We appreciate the support of our members and are grateful to the editorial team for all of their hard work.
We hope that you signed up and have logged into the APA virtual convention platform. The content this year is stellar as always and we are proud of the program we put together. If you haven’t signed up yet, you have until November 15 to get those CEs, so don’t delay! I would like to send a special thank you to Jessica Punzo, who put together the program while managing a move and a number of other stressors. She has been a fantastic program chair and we are all thankful she has agreed to do it again next year! Please ensure you watch for more information about the 2022 convention, which we hope will include us all being back together.
May we all commit to continued growth, risk taking, and challenging biases in 2022 and beyond.
Thank you again for choosing me as the first—of what I hope includes many more—early career psychologist President of Division 56.
Although it is not the year I imagined when I won the election in 2019, watching the scholarship and connection within this group of amazing psychologists has been inspiring. I am honored to have served as Division 56 president this year and I’m excited to see the next steps this amazing group will take in the coming years. Thank you for your support and continued commitment to advancing the field of trauma psychology.