Brainspotting is an advanced form of psychotherapy that can access
parts of the brain that are often hidden from our awareness.
Throughout our lives, we experience events which can cause significant physical and/or emotional injury and distress. It can be a single isolated experience or can occur as a series of small events, which over time accumulate in our body. Either way, these events are traumatic and can leave us with feelings of sadness, anxiousness, anger or other types of emotions. Typically, we aren’t even aware that these past events are affecting us on a daily basis.
We can spend years talking about the feelings we’re experiencing and trying to figure out logically where they have come from. We might even develop ways to live with or “cope” with these feelings. What we might not realize is that all these feelings can be traced back to a core event, or series of events. Finding this source is especially important. By getting to the core issue, we can gain access to the roots of these feelings, allowing our brains to process the material that is causing the emotional or physical reaction. It’s one thing to know why we shouldn’t feel a certain way, it’s quite another to actually be free of those feelings.
Brainspotting is a powerful, focused treatment method that connects current emotional and physical reactions to events that happened in the past. For example, a person who suffered a car accident years earlier might continue to become highly anxious while driving. When we identify a “Brainspot”, we neurobiologically locate and process past experiences that have, for whatever reason, gotten stuck. Once these past traumas are un-stuck, our bodies will no longer continue to react that way.
We may have a degree of awareness as to what might be at the root of a feeling. In other words, we might think we know why we’re feeling a certain way. But there are often additional connections that are typically beyond the reach of our conscious mind. They are actually in areas of the brain that aren’t accessible through talking. Brainspotting appears to take place at a reflexive or cellular level within the nervous system, which can cancel out these unwanted emotional and physiological responses. Brainspotting treatment combines psychology with physiology, bridging the mind-body connection.
(This article was written by Mr. Brena, who received advanced-level training from David Grand, Ph.D., the developer of Brainspotting, who is an internationally recognized trauma expert.)
What is Brainspotting?
Brainspotting is, by far, one of the quickest, easiest, most thorough, and most effective therapeutic method to RELEASE FOREVER the negative thoughts, beliefs and feelings that are causing the dysfunctional behaviors in your life. With Brainspotting you can work on your deepest core issues with minimal discomfort, thanks to the incredibly simple techniques this system employs to quickly and easily activate your parasympathetic nervous system (that part of us that makes us relax, even in the midst of intense stress). _____________________________
Any life event which cause significant physical/emotional injury and distress, in which the person powerfully experiences being overwhelmed, helpless, or trapped, can become a traumatic experience.
There is growing recognition within the healing professions that experiences
of physical and/or emotional injury, acute and chronic pain, serious physical illness,
dealing with difficult medical interventions, societal turmoil, environmental disaster,
as well as many other problematic life events, will contribute to the development of a substantial reservoir of life trauma. That trauma is held in the body.
In most cases, the traumatized individual does not usually have the opportunity or the support to adequately process and integrate these traumatic life events. The traumatic experience then becomes a part of that individual’s trauma reservoir. The body and the psyche cannot remain unaffected by the physical, energetic and emotional costs extracted by this accumulated trauma load. The medical and psychological literature now acknowledges that approximately 75% of requests for medical care are linked to the actions or consequences of this accumulation of stress and/or trauma upon the systems of the human body.
Every health care professional encounters treatment situations in which physical symptoms cannot be separated from their emotional or psychological correlates. Traumatic life experiences, whether physical or emotional, are often significant contributing factors in the development and/or maintenance of most of the symptoms and problems encountered inhealth care.
Brainspotting gives us a tool to neurobiologically locate, focus, process, andrelease such experiences and symptoms that are typically out of reach of the conscious mind and its cognitive and language capacity (thus, this kind of deep processing cannot be accomplished by traditional talk therapy).
Brainspotting works with the deep brain and the body through its direct access to the autonomic and limbic systems within the body’s central nervous system. Brainspotting is accordingly a physiological tool/treatment which has profound psychological, emotional, and physical consequences.
A “Brainspot” is the eye position which is related to the energetic/emotional activation of a traumatic/emotionally charged issue within the brain, most likely in the amygdala, the hippocampus, or the orbitofrontal cortex of the limbic system. Located by eye position, paired with externally observed and internally experienced reflexive responses, a Brainspot is actually a physiological subsystem holding emotional experience in memory form.
Brainspotting appears to stimulate, focus, and activate the body’sinherent capacity to heal itself from trauma. The maintenance of that eye position/Brainspot within the attentional focus on the body’s “felt sense” of that issue or trauma stimulates a deep integrating and healing process within the brain. This processing, which appears to take place at a reflexive orcellular level within the nervous system, brings about a de-conditioning of previously conditioned, maladaptive emotional and physiological responses.
Brainspotting can be directed at distress and Brainspotting is also very useful to access and develop internal resource states and experiences. These resources allow the therapist and patient, where necessary, to“pendulate” between resource or positive states and trauma states during Brainspotting to enable more gradual, graded processing and desensitization of intensely traumatic and emotionally charged issues and symptoms.
Brainspotting processes down to the reflexive core. Often when it appears one has reached a zero distress level, a new strata or floor is broken through, probing deeper into the brain. The reflexive core is in the deep unconscious brain. Brainspotting dismantles the trauma, symptom, somatic distress and dysfunctional beliefs at the reflexive core.
Brainspotting can be an effective and efficient treatment tool for:
Specific issues causing Depression
Anger and rage problems
Any kind of Physical and Emotional Trauma
Recovery from injury and accident trauma
Trauma resulting from medical interventions and treatment
Stress and trauma-related medical illness
Performance issues, including sexual dysfunction
Addictions (especially cravings)
ADD and ADHD
Environmental Illness and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Fibromyalgia and other chronic pain conditions
Preparation and recovery from surgery
Trauma resulting from war and natural disasters
Management of major medical illness
And much, much more
(from the website of Dr. David Grande -
Dr. David Grand discovered Brainspotting and is committed to the worldwide use of trauma healing as a tool to ease human suffering. Grand is the former chairman of the EMDR-Humanitarian Assistance Program. He has coordinated pro bono trainings of trauma therapists in Northern Ireland and inner city Brooklyn, N.Y. Dr. Grand has been featured on NBC Nightly News, Dateline, CNN, the New York Times, the Washington Post, Newsday and O Magazine.
See Dr. David Grand's youtube video - "What is Brainspotting?":
or go to Dr. Grand's website at:
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