What is Trauma?
Trauma results when we find ourselves in situations that challenge our ability to have control over our circumstances or our lives. It is a normal psychological, emotional response to an event or an experience that is deeply distressing or disturbing. Trauma is stored somatically, that means, it's in the body.; the nervous system, brain and gut especially. We have to involve all of those systems to get to the root of trauma and heal.This includes experiences in childhood or through out our lives of;
- physical, emotional and/or sexual abuse,
- physical or emotional neglect, or
- parental separation/divorce
- suffered from mental illness
- was substance dependent
- had been incarcerated, or
- was a perpetrator or victim of domestic violence
Additionally trauma also occurs as a result of;
- physical injury
- traumatic breakups
- death of loved ones
- unforeseen redundancy
- bulling, or
- overwhelming and unexpected financial losses
According to an American study conducted from 1995 to 1997 called the Adverse Childhood Experiences Study (ACE study) 67% of the American population have experienced at lease one of the above events and it is reasonable to assume these statistics are likewise reflected in Australian culture. Frighteningly they discovered that a person’s cumulative ACEs score has a strong, graded relationship to numerous health, social, and behavioural problems throughout the lifespan including increasing the likelihood of heart disease, cancer, substance dependence and suicide.
Focuses instead on restoring a sense of safety, on helping the survivor to discover and draw on their resources, and on self-regulation. We need to strengthen various aspects of a survivor’s health: including emotional, physical, mental, spiritual and social well-being.
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A new technique based in brain science used to release emotional core material or trauma that is stored or frozen in the body, activating the body’s healing response.
Emotional material or trauma is stored or frozen in the body, brainspotting can locate and assist the client to process this through activating the body’s healing response.
Brainspotting uses eye positioning (focusing on one spot) paired with mindful somatic experiencing to locate and process emotionally charged material by staying with it in a compassionate space. The therapist is attuned to the client, as the client is encouraged to be mindful of and focused on the body. Often words are unnecessary to treat an issue as the memories are stored in the emotional or limbic brain. Un-integrated core material is processed in the sub-cortex as the client is supported through physical, emotional and mental processing in the body.
Mindfulness-based Somatic Therapy
Mindfulness-based interventions is a very gentle way of exploring our inner world, in a co-creative way. Mindfulness is used during the session and helps support the client to be present and witness what is happening in a compassionate way. Both client and therapist are held in the present moment working with what arises, in an atmosphere of curiosity, and acceptance.
In this state we can exploring the core processes (thinking, feeling, and moving, internal and external sensing) which allows us to discover the core material and belief’s which shapes our lives. This therapy is a powerful tool for transformation, working with the body, breath, and sound, and discovering creative ways to change beliefs and behaviour that hold us back.
This technique can be used alone or paired with brainspotting.