Number 19 of 21 for 21 – Timeline Development

scene of the crime

As a follow-up to post 18, and thanks to Google Maps, I returned to the “scene of the crime,” which had an interesting effect on the way I processed what happened to us in October.

In recreating the events I felt a curative effect, one that set the events in a safe place for examination and meaning. Perhaps it’s because I’ve listened to Louise Phipps Senft’s “Blink of an Eye” podcast series and wondered why she might want to relive her own family’s traumatic events.  I continue to learn from her efforts, each time I listen to an episode. Her Integrative Center for Trauma Healing, Advocacy & Transformation (, seems to me an ambitious attempt to transform tragedy into meaning and hope. Her curiosity and bravery to dive back into the “fray” as it were, are what most impress me. More, that drive sets an example for me to encourage the same in our work helping people tell complicated, often less traumatic stories.

It is ironic that her work in transformative mediation and trauma healing has such enormous impact on my company’s work because she left litigation years ago.

The process of creating timelines is unyielding. Many times over the years, I have heard clients start with, “this is a very simple case” (it’s never simple) or “I envision a timeline where the sales go up maybe with a big green arrow, while events play out across a timeframe” (the data show the sales going down demanding a big red arrow).

Total immersion, reliving in context and inside the very real confines of an experience, can enhance our understanding of an event or series of events.

Therefore, it would figure, our ability to convey the “story” is improved by the mere act of recalling and reflecting visually.

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