"Trauma-informed workplaces offer a sanctuary of safety and support, a place where people can bring their whole selves and be valued for who they are." - Sandra L. Bloom, M.D., CTIPP Board Chair, and Founder of Creating PRESENCE
What does it mean to be “trauma-informed,” and why should organizations make their workplace more trauma-informed? How can it improve a team member’s (and the organization’s!) well-being, safety, productivity, fulfillment, and growth? How do you build, implement, and sustainably maintain trauma-informed workplaces? Who is responsible for such endeavors within the organization? How do I get started?
We aim to answer those questions and more with our podcast on creating and maintaining trauma-informed workplaces, featuring CTIPP’s Board Chair, Sandra L. Bloom, M.D.
Content advisory: Sexual assault and suicide (:9:13 - :19:58)
Dr. Bloom is a Board-Certified psychiatrist, a Temple University School of Medicine graduate, and an Associate Professor of Health Management and Policy at the Dornsife School of Public Health, Drexel University. A pioneer in the trauma-informed care field, she is the Past-President of the International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies. She has spent over three decades researching, developing, and promoting trauma-informed practices, particularly in workplace settings.
Her work emphasizes the importance of creating safe, supportive, and empowering environments for individuals who have experienced trauma. Her approach to trauma-informed care is comprehensive and holistic, recognizing that the impacts of trauma extend beyond an individual's physical and mental health.
#TransformTrauma is a Campaign for Trauma-Informed Policy and Practice (CTIPP) podcast. Through coalition-building, advocacy, and policymaking, we’re building a national movement that integrates community-led, trauma-informed, resilience-focused, and healing-centered prevention and intervention across all sectors and generations. Learn more at CTIPP.org.
CONTENT ADVISORY: SEXUAL ASSUALT & SUICIDE: 9:13-19:58
Hello and welcome to the transformed trauma podcast. My name is Whitney, and I am the director of trauma-informed practice and Systems transformation with the Campaign for Trauma-Informed Policy and Practice, or CTIPP. And I'm here with Jesse, our executive director. And we're thrilled today to have the opportunity to chat with Dr. Sandra Bloom as our guest, to talk about being responsive to trauma in our systems and in particular, our workplaces, and to learn a bit about Dr. Bloom's background beyond what we discuss here, as well as to check out her books and other amazing work. Please be sure to check out the description of this episode. So welcome, Dr. Bloom. We're delighted to be with you today.
Well, thank you, Whitney. And thank you Jesse, it’s good to be here.
And to begin, since you do have such a rich and storied career, Jesse and I thought a great starting point would be to invite you to share a bit about what you would consider to be the key parts. Of the story that brought you here with us today, the things that called you to this work, as well as any striking learnings or, AHA moments that emerged along the way.
I’d be happy to, but I have a long story because I'm old. I want to give you kind of a context for what my story is. I started out in psychiatry when I was a teenager, first as a secretary on Temple Hospital's psychiatric unit, and then as a psychiatric technician on that same unit. As we were preparing for this conversation, I was thinking about what I was immersed in way back then, which is in the 1960s that then became part of my life story. And I think what I was immersed in was what psychiatry was in the first part of the 20th century, and it was largely influenced by the most important psychiatrist of the day, a guy named Adolf Meyer, who was at John Hopkins.
He talked about what he called “common sense psychiatry”. He was himself an immigrant, and he talked about how human beings were programmed to adapt to all kinds of changing conditions. Some people developed mental disorders as a result of adaptive failure and the inability to adjust to whatever was going on in their lives. He emphasized that the boundary between the mentally well and mentally ill is fluid because normal people can become ill if exposed to sufficiently severe trauma.
He thought that an untoward mixture of noxious environment and psychic conflict causes mental illness. He said “It's the story that counts in a person”. So that was knowledge that was embedded in the way people thought in those days that I was exposed to. Even though I didn't know formally about Adolf Meyer and common-sense psychiatry, it was embedded in my teachers. Later I learned that he had trained a psychiatrist named Trigant Burrow, who was one of the founders of the American psychoanalytic association and had been analyzed by Carl Jung in Switzerland. And Trigant was really the unacknowledged founder of group therapy, unacknowledged because he gave up successful analytic practice and started his own alternative community because he came to believe that it was a society that was sick.
He and his colleagues and friends lived in this community for 30 years, trying to figure out what was wrong with our entire species. And he said, “Individual discord is but the symptom of a social disorder….It's society that is the patient”.
So those ideas were influencing me even though I didn't know it at the time. What I did know, which was explicit when I was working as a mental health tech and then as a medical student and then as a psychiatric resident through the 1960s and 70s, was the main school of thought, which was called social psychiatry. So, it was the main branch at the time when I was training, and it focused on the interpersonal and cultural context of all of the problems that we were seeing and what it takes to create mental well-being for people. So that was part of the conversation. And this all came about because of World War II.
When the war was over, there was a burgeoning understanding that, well, we have to look at everything in the culture because this must never happen again. We had just almost destroyed the whole world, and the nuclear bomb had gone off, and it was really a scary, important time like today. William and Karl Menninger, the Menninger brothers were two psychiatrists who founded the Menninger clinic, famous in Kansas. Karl Menninger’s book, The Human Mind was the first psychology book I read as a teenager. In 1945, William Menninger wrote that “every institution in American society must evaluate its program in terms of the contribution to individual and group mental health and that it was vital to determine the more serious community caused sources of emotional stress”. Wow, 1945 and there is still so much left undone, right?
The people that taught me, were writing about that, talking about that, and teaching us about that social injustice. By 1982, George Albee, who was a psychologist focused on prevention, said “to argue that there are a number of separate and discrete mental illnesses, each with a separate but undiscovered cause, obscures or blocks consideration of the possibility that most emotional disturbances are a result of dehumanization, powerlessness and victimization by social cruelty”. That is already forty years ago and one of the reasons for pointing that out for your listeners is that it illustrates how knowledge keeps getting lost. It keeps getting disregarded. We've known about the impact of trauma as long as there's been recorded history We can go all the way back to Mesopotamian literature, a lot of Greek literature and abundant references in Shakespeare. It doesn't matter where you go. There's always an emphasis on the importance of trauma and what it does to people and yet it keeps being forgotten.
So, there's always a danger today that it will be forgotten again, and that’s part of what I want people to understand. So, although I was immersed in all this, I understood this was part of the context of my experience throughout my training. But it really wasn't until 1980 when my colleagues and I had created our own psychiatric unit in a semi-rural community about an hour north of Philadelphia, and I had been asked to see a young woman, a teenager, who was the daughter of a nurse that I had worked with. And in my first book, I call her “Dawn.” Her mom sent her to me because she had accused a man on a college campus of rape. And the police investigated, and it had not happened. And even listening to her story, it didn’t make sense. Even to her, it didn’t make sense and I didn’t know what to make out of that. WeI started doing regular weekly psychotherapy and having been trained in social psychiatry and dynamic psychiatry, you get people's story, and you develop a relationship with them, and then you kind of see as you go what they need and how to help. I worked with her for several years, probably three or four years, and then she left to go to graduate school after she had finished college.
During that time, there were times, usually whenever she was out on a date, where she would call me as an emergency, where she would be really upset, and I couldn't always understand what it was she was upset about. She’d be crying, and I'd calm her down and just listen and talk to her, and then she'd say, “I'm okay now, and I'll see you at the next session”. I didn’t really think much about those episodes or what they meant. And then in 1985, I got a call from her mother asking if she could bring her in to be hospitalized because she was suicidal. They were now in another state. I said, of course, or yes. But I was kind of staggered because I thought she was all better.
When they arrived and I walked into the room to do the psychiatric evaluation, it was her, the person I knew, but in another way, it wasn't her. It was the weirdest thing I had encountered up until that time and I had encountered so”me pretty weird things. But she was moving like a little child, and it was very dramatic. And I remember saying to her, “who are you?” And she gave her name. And then I said, “how old are you?” And she said, “I'm seven”. This was somebody I thought I knew as well as I knew anybody in my family. This was not a stranger.
What then emerged over time, in the course of her hospitalization, which was just a couple of weeks, was that she was an incest survivor. And I was staggered. I was shocked that I had missed it all this time. I had been in psychiatry a long time, and I just could not believe that I didn’t know or even suspect this incredibly important information. And her mother was able to confirm a lot of the surrounding details of what my patient was telling me, enough to undo any skepticism I had about what she was telling me.
Now, looking back, I think there were some other things that kind of prepared the groundwork for being able to accept the terrible things that happen to children. I started seeing her in 1980. In 1983, a tragedy occurred in the relatively small community we were practicing in. The hospital where our unit was located was small with a President of the Board and a very active ministerium in the town.
In 1983, two boys handcuffed themselves together, took LSD, and set a recording going so they could say goodbye to all their friends and relatives. At the same time they could express their hatred for all the people that they hated, which they did. They then handcuffed themselves together and jumped into a quarry to their deaths. One of them was the son of a prominent local minister. About a couple of weeks later, the girlfriend of the boy who was the minister’s son, killed herself. She was the daughter of the President of the Board of the hospital. Naturally this tragedy got enormous coverage locally. A reporter from Philadelphia Magazine came up to do an investigative report on these three adolescent deaths because it wasn’t as routine as it has become for teenagers to kill themselves.
It was really mysterious as to what was going on. I had met the one boy who was the minister’s son once because the school had called me in to see if there was anything I could do to help him. I think the school had a sense that things were really going downhill, so they forced this young man to come into a room with me. But he wasn't about to talk to me about anything, I don't know that I had ever experienced anybody so filled with hatred as he seemed to be and I said so to the school people, I had no idea what to do to help him and we had no legal grounds to really do anything. He hadn’t overtly threatened suicide or homicide or anything else that would put someone’s life in danger. But after the deaths what I saw then was that this trauma affected the entire community, the whole hospital community, the school - everybody because everybody was interconnected, all the churches, all the families. It was a system trauma.
So in retrospect, I think that’s what set me up for the things that began to unfold later when I then started to see people in our psychiatric unit who came in with every kind of conceivable problem. We had an open, voluntary unit because another thing your listeners should know is that there were in those days, in many general hospitals, open, voluntary psychiatric units so you could get care if you were really in a crisis. You could get away from home for a while and get into a place where people would listen to you and give you an opportunity to tell your story. We used a lot of art therapy and psychodrama and movement therapy so early on we were integrating the expressive arts because that was what was done at the time, not because we knew how effective all of those modalities were for trauma, but because that was part of what I had been trained to expect, where the arts were really important. And so, when I created my own program, I did the same thing.
So we started asking everybody about their history of childhood trauma and other traumas, and we were profoundly shocked because everybody, virtually everybody, had a sad and often abusive history. And sometimes we had captured the history, but we just didn't know what to do with it. And at other times, we hadn't asked the right questions. And of course, it is also true that it is painful for people to talk about their past trauma, particularly if it begins in childhood, so they would actively avoid telling us. We were absolutely floored at the amount of sexual abuse that people experience as kids, men, and women. It was astonishing. We had all been taught it was really rare, that sexual abuse hardly ever happened to anybody. Several years later, the same reporter for the Philadelphia Magazine, Stephen Fried, came up again to the same area, the same neighborhood, to investigate a local police chief who had been convicted for pedophilia and was in prison. It was never proven, but there was some suspicion that the two boys, or at least one of the boys, that had killed themselves, had known this guy. So it remained a question in my mind, but that would certainly explain what I saw back in 1983 and didn't understand.
So by 1991, we were in a team meeting trying to figure out how we had all been changed by this information and my friend and colleague, Joe Foderaro, who sadly died last year, said “we've stopped asking people what's wrong with them, and now we ask what happened to them and that's changed everything”. We had stopped focusing on what their diagnosis was and thinking that in some way we could medicate it all away, but this was really hard information to take on board and to recognize about our culture.
I had been trained at Temple Hospital. So Temple is in the middle of one of the most impoverished neighborhoods in the country, mostly African American at this point, with a history as a community. It had been a very highly industrialized area, where people after the civil war who had been enslaved, came up to the northeast to find jobs and the jobs were there. The factories were abundant and they needed a workforce, and people moved in near their workplace and developed prosperous neighborhoods.
But then over time, as the industry left and went overseas, people were trapped. They couldn't get away - there weren't any jobs anymore. If you were white, you could get out to the new and growing suburbs, where there were workplaces and new housing. But if you were black, the Civil Right Movement hadn't even happened yet, so you were really stuck there. The people who originally taught me how to be a mental health tech were all African Americans - they were my colleagues and my friends, even though I was much younger. Segregation still existed as it still does but not in the hospital. So I wasn't as aware of what people were going through, But when I entered medical school and my residency my patients were largely African-Americans living in poverty, trying to make a living as best they could, trying to protect their children from the encroachment of drug dealers and pimps. They were all my patients once I started actually training, and then I would find out what their lives were like, and that was excruciating. So I had this division. I looked at what was going on at Temple, and I said, oh, there's nothing I can do about these social problems. This is so huge. I can't get people jobs. I can't get them out of these impoverished situations where kids are eating lead paint.
One of my teachers was the person that discovered the connection between lead paint and brain damage in children. All of the psychiatrists that taught me were active in the Civil Rights Movement, in the feminist movement, in the [LBGTQIA2S+] movement. One of them was John Fry, who was the guy that was the first psychiatrist to go to an APA meeting with a mask on and talk about how being gay was not pathological. So they were my teachers. But I didn't think I could impact the social problems people had in any way because the problems were so big and so social. So when I finished my residency I went out to the far distant, all white suburbs expecting I’d be able to do something there. And that's when we found trauma. That's when we really discovered that this is everywhere. There's different kinds of trauma, but exposure to adversity and trauma is everywhere. And that was overwhelming.
And so now bridging into the workplace because I know that's what you guys want to get to
I want to talk a minute with what happened to us as clinicians because we all got burned out. There were various physical illness that developed among us, mental illness, divorces, affairs, boundary violations - any number of signs that we were not doing well. We seemed to be okay before we started letting in all this knowledge about what people had really been through. So recognizing the degree of pathology in the culture was very disturbing, and that you have to look at yourself and you have to look at your own issues, and you are compelled to look at what happened to you as a kid and an adolescent and as an adult. You had to look at the relationships you were in. You had to do your own work. It wasn't about “us” and “them”. It was really us. All of us in a culture that had become incredibly pathological. So that's the very long answer to what you asked me, and I'll pause and take a breath for a minute.
Yes, Sandy, thank you for sharing all of that. And it's incredible to hear about how so long ago we were talking about how macro sociological systems impacted the individual and how one of the things that we do at CTIPP is really try and flip the narrative. Has become where burden and onus of trauma and resilience seems to be. Put so much on the individual that we've lost sight of how broader systems are impacting the individual. You brought up issues around redlining, around sexual abuse and just the magnitude of abuse, neglect and dysfunction that exists in people's lives.
Which reminds me also of the ACEs study, the Adverse Childhood Experiences study, and what Dr. Anda and Dr. Felitti found in their groundbreaking study in the 90s as well. I am curious, as you did that work at your own workplace. You sort of left us off there since 91 when all of that work took place. You've now developed models and have become a real international leader in terms of how this applies to all workplaces. We're not just talking about psychiatric care settings. We're not just talking about people that have as advanced degrees and knowledge sets as you are. We're sort of talking about creating human workplaces all over, in all industries, all across the world. And so, I'm curious if you can sort of pick back up there about how all of this applies to the broader workplace in all settings.
Sure. I think what we have to reckon with is that. There really is no meaningful vision of health, that we have mistaken what we call normal for health. The two are radically different. So, we don't have a vision of what's a healthy individual, what's a healthy group, what's a healthy society. No, there's no vision of that, that's not portrayed really anywhere except on Star Trek, so without that, you don't know what you're aiming for.
And being human beings, our greatest strength is that we are very adaptive. It's also our greatest weakness because you can see it day by day. We are adapting to the most pathological behavior at every level of our system including our national and state governments. It's unbelievable when you turn on the television, but we are adapting to it. We are adapting to astonishing levels of cruelty and hatred being accepted as normal.
Well, how can this be? How can we be getting sicker and sicker and sicker and more and more and more violent? Well, I’d say we're building on about 12,000 years of intergenerational exposure to trauma and adversity. It's not new. It's been around as soon as people stopped being hunter gatherers and settled down. We have been making war on each other ever since.
So, it means on the ground now, today, that the people running our systems, no matter what system you look at, from the federal level right down to the workplace are people who have been exposed themselves in some way to adverse childhood experiences, because we know from an abundance of research that most people in our culture have been exposed to adversity and trauma.
And then there's all of the interpersonal violence that people are exposed to. You know, we know from the national studies that 46% of women and 42% of men have been exposed to one or more types of interpersonal violence in their lifetime.
We know that the more childhood adversity you've had, the more likely you are to suffer from a mental illness - any mental illness. We know that the Secret service has investigated that people don't just snap. These school shooters, church shooters, these people that are creating havoc, they don't just snap. The common theme is that they have experienced loss, failure, public humiliation in the days or weeks before they attack other people. None of this is mysterious anymore.
We know where all of this is coming from, but our values have become radically altered.
We are no longer grounded as Americans in terms of shared values, purpose and meaning. The only thing that seems to really mean anything is money. And that's been going on as long as I've been alive. The cultural emphasis has shifted so that the only thing of value is in accumulating wealth and that if you're not doing that, then you really don't have much value. So, the result of that is that we've created a society where violence is now a constant threat to everyone everywhere and we forget that it's all completely preventable.
We have to stop being bewildered by what is happening and what's causing it. We know what's causing it. It's violence beginning in childhood, then further exacerbated by interpersonal violence and injustice of all kinds. We have to recognize that there are different levels of safety. And this came out of our work. It was clear that it isn't just physical violence that's an issue. There's also psychological violence, social violence, moral violence and cultural violence. And our culture has become violent in all those ways and it's increasing. It's not decreasing. And that means every workplace has to establish some kind of system of meaningful interlocking values that everyone is held accountable to. And every workplace then has to have what are called “universal precautions”. With COVID that meant wearing a mask and universal precautions around violence are really focused on every level of safety and becoming more aware of our own responsibility in creating safety in the workplace.
We really have to be thinking about not just physical safety, but the cruelty that is being used as a standard for how to treat people. Systems are under stress, become increasingly authoritarian, and in doing so they are likely to become increasingly cruel and controlling. And human beings do not thrive in those kinds of environments. So, we have to be really thinking about the values that are important. Everybody has to take responsibility for this. Every person must recognize that silence is dangerous. When you see something going on that is unsafe, you need to speak up. You need to collectively get other people involved to stop it.
Whenever there is cruelty, injustice, really bad kinds of behavior, don't stay silent. And yet that's what people do whenever they see bullying, they often go, “Oh, I'm not going to deal with that because the bully is going to attack me”. Well, that's probably true if you do it by yourself. So, you have to organize. You have to respond collectively. When you see the destructive behavior going on, recognize that it's really dangerous- people can end up being hurt, and it might be you if you don't speak up.
Wow. I'm so struck by everything you've shared, and I really appreciate that you've highlighted the need to really shift toward a different set of shared values and to coalesce around common values that will help us take collective action. And I think that one of the reasons we together today is because at CTIPP we've created a toolkit to really try to support folks who are seeing these challenges and are the need for change and are wondering about where their spot in this movement is.
And as we've been talking about today, we know that while the onus really does need to be on the system so that folks don't have to adapt to a dysfunctional and unhealthy and harmful way of being to survive, we also recognize that it's through individual and collective advocacy and action that this kind of change really will push organizations and systems out of the current power dynamics and to disrupt the status quo so that they will really be motivated to shift their ways of thinking and being and doing and relating. And so, in that toolkit, we give some thoughts and resources.
And yet, of course, we know that sustainable change implementation, of course looks different in different settings. And as much as we might wish that this was a formula we could give, there's really no checklist where we can say, okay, start here, do exactly this and you'll be able to expand into this trauma-informed, preferred future.
So, with all of that said, I think I'm curious to know from you for someone who is listening and is really wondering about either their place in this movement or what they might be able to do themselves. To model the model. In addition to really calling in and calling out when they see that violence happening, I wonder how you might help them think about action steps that they can take to catalyze or contribute to that broad, sweeping, and sustainable, trauma-informed change in their own workplace setting. Whatever it might be, whatever their role is.
Well, I think about my own experience that I've been talking about, and the first thing we really had to do was get educated. We joined the International Society For Traumatic Stress Studies in order to find out what in the world were people doing. It didn't get organized until after Vietnam. It was really the Vietnam War that brought the issue of PTSD onto the table. Learning about it is critical, and there are all different ways to do that. There are books, many training programs and there is online material. My colleagues and I created a new online training program for organizations that was released during the pandemic called Creating PRESENCE. And we use the word to embody a set of values, Partnership, and Power, Reverence and Restoration, Emotional Wisdom and Empathy, Safety and Social Responsibility, Embodiment and Enactment, Nature and Nurture, Culture and Complexity, Emergence and Evolution. So those 16 words basically enable us to talk about anything.
There’s an Introductory Track for everybody in an organization. And then it divides into a Leadership Track, a Clinical Track, a Direct Service Track, and an Indirect Service Track so that everybody gets educated in slightly different ways depending on what their job is and a lot of universal precautions that are embedded within the training program. And because it's mine, we can modify it to any kind of industry, we can do whatever we want with it. I don't have to report to anybody else. It's kind of exciting to see what's happening. We've begun to get our first certified programs in that educational process, but that's just the beginning.
Because then it gets down to figuring out how to use the knowledge. And that really is where people have to recognize that silence is dangerous, that they have to speak up and educate each other and basically incorporate what they come up with as a result of the knowledge acquisition into their policies and practices, depending on what is going on in the workplace.
But that means that every department must look at how we are trauma-informed and how we are, not trauma-informed? How are we actually creating more stress for people? What are our workplace practices? How can we continue to do the work we have to do and create what we need to create but not endanger people in the ways they're currently being endangering? And it's a process just like it was for us. It's a process of gradually understanding and coming to grips with counterproductive workplace practices. It's hard work and it is not for amateurs. It's really hard to do because you have to look at your own experiences with adversity and trauma. There's no way around it.
First, you have to look at your own families and it doesn't mean you don't love them, but it does mean there are intergenerational things going on that have been going on for, perhaps, thousands of years. It's not your parents or your grandparents. The knowledge of this way of treating each others was passed on to them. So I think we have to be clear, firm and compassionate about the past and about our ancestors and what they've tried to do and where they failed and start things anew if we're going to save the planet.
I mean, what's at stake now isn't just our individual lives. It's really about whether life is going to continue on Earth. There's a lot of doubt about that because of all the damage, the wounding, the trauma we've inflicted on nature, on the environment, and our separation and dissociation from our natural environment as if we were somehow superior to all other species. And what we know now is a “no”. We are complexly interdependent with every other living creature. We live in a new age that was declared in 2016 by geologists. It's called the Anthropocene Age. We are the first generation of humans where the future of the planet is going to be determined by the choices human beings make.
That's huge. And we are making incredibly bad choices everywhere. And I'm going to contend that the reason we're making those really bad choices is because of these thousands of years of multigenerational trauma that we have only really understood anything about in the last couple of decades. So, there's a big burden on all of us living today and on the future generations. We have to pass the baton. We have to give these young people the knowledge they need that has been lost in the past, that's now been found again, and try to guarantee that it won't be lost again.
And that's our challenge. How do we keep it going?
We lead with the hope and belief that we can make the decisions to continue the well-being of each other and the planet as a whole. I mean, that's what keeps us in this work, right, is understanding that we may not have known exactly what had led to all of these horrible decisions for millennia in the past, but as we understand what has been driving these behaviors, we can make new behaviors and that will take all of us.
But I'm curious, as someone who has been in this work for so long and as someone who could have gotten out of the work, done other things that may have been more individually beneficial, what has kept you in the work? What keeps you motivated and continuing to do work, continuing to innovate and continuing to drive this movement forward?
And I think, as you expressed it earlier, it's hope and love. I am really scared that we are going to destroy life and that motivates me. It's love of the planet, it's love of life, it's love of people, despite what a difficult species we are. I love my dog and I don't want to see all the animals killed; I don't want to see the elephants no longer there. I don't want that to happen. And in the little tiny bit that I can do to keep hope alive and keep love alive, I think “What else is the purpose of being alive if it's not that?” And I have been very fortunate in my life. I have a great deal to be grateful for. I have not suffered most of what the people that I've worked with have suffered. And that being the case, I think I have a moral obligation to do whatever I can to reduce the suffering in any small way I can. I don't like to see people suffer. I find it really. poisonous, toxic to watch people make other people suffer. And so I think that's what keeps me going is “What's going on is not right. And together we can prevent it”.
We know enough now and If we get together to work collectively, we could stop this. We can change the destiny of where humanity is going for now. We can't do it alone and we can't do it in one generation, but we can do it. We need transformative experiences. And so I'm trying to keep learning things, keep kind of pushing away the veils that are in front of reality, but not let that reality drag me under. How to keep hope alive, how to keep love alive, how to engage with other people like both of you, to move this human evolution in a different direction than the direction it is currently and obviously set upon. That’s really what we're trying to do.
That's the big-ticket item: can we consciously, deliberately evolve into a different form of being a human being, where life is really valued, where love is the most important thing in the world, not money, and where we respect other forms of life and each other. What other purposes are there for being alive if not that?
What you just shared is pretty darn profound. Right? And I really appreciate that you capture that. This is a long game. Sometimes I think people might get disillusioned, and yet we know that this is something that those of us doing this work, we likely will never get to see, really, this come to fruition, this shift, this healthy, compassionate, equitable, connected world that we want to see. And yet we know the steps to take.
We know what must happen for humanity and all organic life and nature as we know it to continue to exist. And I think that's just a lot to sit with. And I imagine that our audience is just reeling taking that all in. And there's so much that you've shared today. We've gone into corners of the meso, the micro, the macro, all of it. And as we just wrap up this conversation, I'm curious to know what final things are on your heart or mind that we haven't asked about that you think are important to share with our listening community.
And I think it's important for people to step up to the plate, being a baseball fan, that everybody has a role to play. And if you are depressed, if you feel lost, if you feel like you have no role to play, it's because you haven't found your purpose yet. And your purpose is part of what we're talking about. So you need to get on board. We need everybody in this. We need everybody's participation. There is some way, even if you are working at a very low level in the workplace, you can affect the people that you work with. And just like COVID spreads, so do good things. The good things that we do are every bit as contagious as the bad things. And so everybody has a choice every day, every minute of the day, whether you're going to do something for the good or not, whether you're going to speak up or not. And so those are my final requests, I think, to send out there.
Love that call to action. And for anybody who is curious to find out more about the different types of steps you could take, we would invite anybody to check out CTIPP.org, check out the materials we've put out there. We're going to include Dr. Bloom's materials in the description of this episode for exploration as well. And Dr. Bloom, we're just so thrilled to have had the opportunity to be in community with you today. We're grateful for your continued commitment to and leadership in this work and just really appreciate you sharing the insights and wisdom from your extensive work in making change with us here today. Thank you so much.