I developed the S.H.I.F.T. Trauma-Responsive Communication Technique over the course of 20 years of working with individuals impacted by criminal violations and highly destructive misconduct and conflict. S.H.I.F.T. enables us to connect with individuals in extreme distress or trauma to help them talk about their experience.
Using voice, mannerisms, and specific language, the technique is designed to gain the trust of an agitated or withdrawn person and help that person return to the present moment by helping them feel safe and cared for.
S.H.I.F.T. describes the steps of the technique itself:
S - Spot the signs/symptoms of traumatic stress and anxiety.
H - Hold their experience with them.
I - Identify their feelings with them.
F - Focus on their needs.
T - Take action.
To better understand the first two steps of the technique download the free SPOT and HOLD Quick Reference Guide.