Some of the newer, and more effective forms of therapy, have centered around brain science and understanding its primal and higher functionalities related to emotions. One of these modalities is called Brainspotting.
“Trauma is a stuck or frozen survival response that is trapped in the body. . . . If the nervous system does not have the ability to discharge the survival energy, it can become stuck in the body and cause a variety of ailments ranging from depression, anxiety, PTSD, chronic pain, illness, dissociation, and disconnection from oneself. . . . Brainspotting is a somatic-based psychotherapy that uses a bottom-up approach. Whereas talk therapies utilize a top-down approach., Brainspotting access the somatic activation related to issues, which travel up from the peripheral nervous system (in the body) into the spine and then brainstem/midbrain. . . . The midbrain processing of trauma is crucial as it is the site where traumas . . . are held.” (Brainspotting Information – Mariya Javed, n.d.).
In an article written by Elizabeth Handy, she writes about a client who experienced extreme trauma by being stabbed four times and lived. The client reported that, in order to cope with the trauma, “I covered them up with an unhealthy façade displaying a sense of everything was okay. These emotions began to manifest into recurring night terrors and crippling panic attacks. I also had difficulty understanding why I survived and how can I be grateful. . . . . I had been experiencing grave pain in the organs that received the blunt of the trauma but by the end I no longer felt that pain. Brainspotting taught me how some of my pains were simply in my head. It felt wonderful to be freed of such inhibiting pains from day to day. From then on I no longer felt the hold that my assailant and that night had on my psychological self. Brainspotting allowed me to effectively and healthily transcend through the steps of trauma.” (Handy, 2015)
The mind and brain are amazing things, and they do everything they can to help you survive and thrive. But it’s important to understand that trauma isn’t meant to be pushed away or ignored. Your body wants it to be healed in order for you to truly experience your best life. If you or someone you know has experienced trauma, there are ways to heal this that you may have never thought possible.
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Handy, E. (2015, February 9). Survival Story: "I was stabbed four times." | Elizabeth Handy. Elizabeth Handy. https://www.emdrandpsychotherapy.com/survival-story
Brainspotting Information by Mariya Javed, LICSW, LADC – Training Handout — Awaken Consulting Services. https://www.awakenconsultingservices.com/about-mariya-javed