The Pocket Guide to the Polyvagal Theory: The Transformative Power of Feeling Safe

The Pocket Guide to the Polyvagal Theory: The Transformative Power of Feeling Safe

When The Polyvagal Theory was published in 2011, it took the therapeutic world by storm, bringing Stephen Porges’s insights about the autonomic nervous system to a clinical audience interested in understanding trauma, anxiety, depression and other mental health issues. The book made accessible to clinicians and other professionals a polyvagal perspective that provided new concepts and insights for understanding human behavior. The perspective placed an emphasis on the important link between psychological experiences and physical manifestations in the body. That book was brilliant but also quite challenging to read for some.


Since publication of that book, Stephen Porges has been urged to make these ideas more accessible and The Pocket Guide to the Polyvagal Theory is the result. Constructs and concepts embedded in polyvagal theory are explained conversationally in The Pocket Guide and there is an introductory chapter which discusses the science and the scientific culture in which polyvagal theory was originally developed. Publication of this work enables Stephen Porges to expand the meaning and clinical relevance of this groundbreaking theory.

Title:The Pocket Guide to the Polyvagal Theory: The Transformative Power of Feeling Safe
Edition Language:English
ISBN:9780393707878
Format Type:

    The Pocket Guide to the Polyvagal Theory: The Transformative Power of Feeling Safe Reviews

  • James Jesso

    I think as an objective experience for readability; this book derives a 3 1/2 or 4. There are several editing errors and often repeats itself due to being a collection of transcribed interviews. Howev...

  • Amelia

    Interesting overview of polyvagal theory but still quite dense reading if you're not very biologically-minded and very repetitive as this is a collection of interviews that often goes over the same ma...

  • Lynette Monteiro

    Essentially a transcript of interviews by Ruth Buczynski and Stephen Porges. A useful book to help understand the very complex Polyvagal Theory but not quite what I expected given the title....

  • Lance

    I loved this book so much! It took me at least two months to read because it was so dense, and I literally had to read it with a dictionary next to me at all times. By the end, however, I can definite...

  • Emily Salzinger

    Having a functional nervous system is foundational to social engagement, learning, happiness. Thank you Stephen Porges for publishing a book that makes your Polyvagal Theory more understandable for us...

  • VW

    A little repetitive in places, but overall an excellent introduction to the Polyvagal Theory for non-technical readers....

  • Shelley

    I agree with other reviewers that there is a lot of repetition in this book BUT the information is somewhat complicated and I believe I was able to grasp and comprehend the important nuances better as...

  • Jreader

    I had heard of the polyvagal theory somewhere along the line in graduate school, got some very good information through a website from Sounds True with an online class from Diane Poole-Heller in 2016 ...

  • Carol

    This book offered an interesting theory of some functions of the nervous system. I liked it but man! was it repetitive! I feel that everything could have been stated in one chapter, instead of the 244...

  • Ecaterina Burton

    Illuminating with implications for areas far beyond therapeutic settings. Porges has spent decades shedding light on the power of the vagus nerve on regulating our bodies, with his springboard being i...