Seeking Safety

This is an educational group about coping skills to feel safe.   You can download handouts about each weekly topic and it will be presented in a class format. 

It is being done this way rather than as a therapy group so that we can reach as many people in the community as possible. 


You can join at any time or just show up for the topics you choose.   


Group presented over Zoom and you can maintain privacy by not having your name show and not turning your camera on. 


Anyone present can ask questions.  It is suggested that if you do have an individual mental health provider, to talk to them about what you learn and they can help you to explore what strategies could help and to put them into practice.

Seeking Safety
Play Video

6:00 PM


What is Seeking Safety?

Seeking Safety was designed for people with a history of trauma and/or addiction.

  • such as a distressing event such as a child abuse, major accident, combat, domestic violence, natural disaster, etc.

  • such as destructive use of alcohol, drugs, gambling, food, shopping, etc. 

  • Traumatic Stress from the Pandemic


Seeking Safety focuses on coping skills to help you become more safe in your relationships, thinking, and actions.


Seeking Safety is very safe and optimistic. It focuses on your strengths and helps you increase them. It has 25 topics, although you can do as few or many as you choose to. Topics change from week to week, attend when you want to.


Topics Include:

Safety        Taking Good Care of Yourself        Honesty        Asking for Help        Recovery Thinking
    Setting Boundaries in Relationships         Healthy Relationships        Creating Meaning        Compassion
Detaching from Emotional Pain (Grounding)         Community Resources         Discovery
    Getting Others to Support Your Recovery         Integrating the Split Self         Commitment
  Respecting Your Time         Coping with Triggers         Self‐Nurturing         Red and Green Flags       Life Choices

What to Expect from the Group

Every session of Seeking Safety is structured with a check‐in, an inspiring quotation, discussion, and check‐out. The goal is to use time well to help you get the most from each session.

Seeking Safety focuses on the present. This means you will not be asked to reveal upsetting stories of trauma or addiction. We focus on what you can do right now to create a better life for yourself.

It is relevant to all types of trauma and/or addiction. For example, you may have survived traumas such as child abuse, combat, natural disasters, accidents, or violence.


You may have addiction to substances, gambling, food, or otherbehavior. If you have both trauma and addiction issues, we address the link between the two—how common it is for the two to go together.

Seeking Safety has been successfully used for over 20 years across genders and with people struggling with many different life issues including Traumatic Stress, Anxiety, HIV/AIDS, homelessness, serious mental illness, and incarceration.

Who can join Seeking Safety?
Anyone can join. You can get a lot from participating, especially if you are open to new coping skills to improve your life.

Does Seeking Safety work?
Seeking Safety is the most popular and scientifically studied counseling model for trauma and addiction. Research shows that it works for both trauma and addiction issues, is cost‐effective, and very safe.


Is Seeking Safety culturally sensitive?
Yes. Seeking Safety has been implemented with diverse cultural and ethnic groups, who have consistently expressed strong satisfaction with it. It has also been translated into over 12 languages. Seeking Safety emphasizes adaptation toeach person's needs.

This summary was adapted from Lisa M. Najavits, PhD, the developer of Seeking Safety (June, 2018)


Group Leaders

Briana Orta Vazquez, 
BA Intern
Michigan State University

Emma Zichi, 
2022 MSW Intern
University of Michigan