Introducing the first self-help workbook on moral injury, featuring a powerful approach grounded in acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) to help you heal moral pain and connect with a deeper sense of meaning and purpose.
If you’ve experienced, witnessed, or failed to prevent an act that violates your own deeply held values—such as accidentally harming someone in an automobile accident, or failing to save someone from a dangerous situation—you may suffer from moral injury, an enduring psychological and spiritual pain that is often accompanied by post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, substance abuse, and other mental health conditions. In order to begin healing, you need to reconnect with your values and what really matters to you as a human being. Written by a renowned team of PTSD and trauma professionals, this workbook can help.
The Moral Injury Workbook is the first workbook of its kind to offer a powerful step-by-step program to help you move beyond moral pain. With this guide, you’ll learn to work through difficult thoughts, emotions, and spiritual troubles; reconnect with your deeply held sense of self, values, or spiritual beliefs; and gain the psychological flexibility you need to begin healing and live a full and meaningful life. Links to downloadable worksheets for veterans and clinicians are also included.
Whether you’ve experienced moral injury yourself, work in the field of mental health, or are a pastoral advisor seeking new ways to help facilitate moral healing, this workbook is an effective and much-needed resource.
“You are not alone, and it is possible to reconnect with who and what is most important to you. This is the hope-filled message of The Moral Injury Workbook. Whether you have done or failed to do something, or something has been done to you, if you have experienced a betrayal of moral values you hold dear, this workbook offers evidence-based strategies for how to move forward and reclaim your life. It is an inspiring and essential resource for anyone facing the complex, painful, and often hidden struggles that result from moral injury.”
—Jenna LeJeune, PhD, licensed clinical psychologist; president of Portland Psychotherapy Clinic, Research, and Training Center; and coauthor of Values in Therapy
“Providing essential resources for both therapists and clients, this book is a comprehensive and compassionate account of finding a way forward after surviving a range of adverse experiences. Based on science and grounded in the heart, the authors have delivered a text that combines clinical insights, personal stories, and useful exercises for finding meaning in living. This book is essential reading for anyone interested in trauma and moral injury. Both clients and therapists will find support and comfort in these words, which give a sense of purpose to doing the difficult work of addressing moral injury.”
—Victoria Follette, PhD, PsyD, program chair, director of clinical training, and professor in the school of psychology at Florida Institute of Technology
“If you find yourself haunted by a past event where you hurt or injured someone, or witnessed this happening to someone else, then I urge you to consider this book. The authors relate powerful stories and tools that can help you move from alienation and disconnection to repair and wholeness. If your moral sense has been disrupted or damaged, this book is a lifeline.”
—Jason B. Luoma, PhD, shame and self-compassion researcher, and coauthor of Learning ACT and Values in Therapy
“Grounded in the collective clinical and scientific expertise of the four authors, this important contribution is full of compassionate, wise, and much-needed, practical tools for addressing moral injury with acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT). For persons seeking to heal their lives from the wounds of morally injurious events, they will find a treasure trove of insights and strategies for restoring human connection and meaningful living. For clinicians and trainees who desire toincorporate ACT in their attempts to address moral injury in therapeutic settings, this book is similarly essential reading, and one that will be reviewed again and again.”
—Joseph Currier, PhD, associate professor of psychology at the University of South Alabama, and lead editor ofAddressing Moral Injury in Clinical Practice
“This useful resource for anyone suffering from or caring for those with moral injury helpfully brings ACT principles to bear in a manner that invites a fresh, honest, and ultimately hopeful exploration of one’s moral identity.”
—Jason Nieuwsma, PhD, associate director of the VA Mid-Atlantic MIRECC Mental Health and Chaplaincy program, and associate professor at Duke University Medical Center
About the Authors:
Wyatt R. Evans, PhD, is a board-certified clinical psychologist with the VA North Texas Health Care System, and therapist in private practice in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. His primary areas of expertise are resilience and post-traumatic stress, including moral injury. He is committed to advancing interventions, especially acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT), to promote recovery and enhance resilience for service members, veterans, and others highly affected by trauma.
Robyn D. Walser, PhD, is director of TL Consultation Services, codirector of the Bay Area Trauma Recovery Clinic, staff at the National Center for PTSD, and an associate clinical professor at the University of California, Berkeley. As a licensed clinical psychologist, she maintains an international training, consulting, and therapy practice. She is an expert in ACT, has coauthored six books on the subject, and is author of The Heart of ACT.
Kent D. Drescher, PhD, is a clinical psychologist (retired) who provided clinical services, education, and research as a staff member with the National Center for PTSD for more than twenty-seven years. His primary areas of expertise include the intersection of trauma and spirituality and moral injury. He has been an early advocate for the use of ACT for veterans struggling with moral challenges following military service.
Jacob K. Farnsworth, PhD, is a licensed clinical psychologist with the VA Eastern Colorado Health Care System, specializing in trauma and substance use disorders. He is codeveloper of the ACT for moral injury intervention, and his writing and research has focused on translating cutting-edge research into innovative and effective treatments for moral injury.