Have you heard of the brainspotting therapy? Probably not, because it is not a well-known or widespread therapy. However, it can be a great option when it comes to relieving physical and emotional stress arising from traumatic events.
- 1 What exactly is Brainspotting?
- 2 Why do traumatic experiences get blocked in the brain?
- 3 How Brainspotting works
What exactly is Brainspotting?
To explain what brainspotting is, the best we can do is explain where the term comes from. And, as you can guess, "brainspotting" is an English term, which literally means "brain point."
This is a very innovative method that has been used in psychology for a relatively short time, and that involves dealing with suffering in a deeper and more transformative way than other techniques.
In this way, you can help the person who is suffering to recover from the emotional wounds that a traumatic event has caused.
This technique, as we say, is quite novel. In fact, it was discovered in 2003 by psychotherapist David Grand, while he was practicing EMDR therapy with his patients
During one of these therapies, he realized that when they reduced eye movements, they could process the traumatic experiences in a more tolerable way, without such a high impact.
That is, Grand realized that people showed infrequent reflex reactions when their eyes were in certain positions.
And that's how he developed brainspotting, which consists of connect the emotional reactions and physical reactions that a person currently has with the traumatic events of the past. With this, you can identify the “brain point” and, with work, release the emotions of the traumatic experience that have been blocked.
Why do traumatic experiences get blocked in the brain?
All stressful experiences that we can consider a threat can end up becoming a trauma. It is a normal mechanism of brain, because it seeks to protect itself (and protect us). However, the fact that you look for something does not mean that you get it. In fact, these protection mechanisms are often counterproductive.
This is seen, especially, when the traumas derive from a difficult situation that we have experienced at some point, and for which we have not had adequate support (something fundamental when it comes to processing negative emotions and integrating them into our lives).
The result of this is that the negative experience is recorded in our brain and becomes a trauma that is activated in different situations and that, as you should know, negatively affects our emotional and physical balance.
This, which could sound very ethereal, the truth is that it has been confirmed by studies from Harvard University, in which it has been seen that the painful prints are etched in the brain, activating the tonsil, the core of fear and the visual cortex.
This is very important, because, when a negative experience is processed correctly, it becomes part of the person's vital narrative, so, remembering it, the area of the brain that is activated is Broca's area, responsible for the language.
That is, there is a clear relationship between areas of the brain that are activated for the same painful emotional event processed correctly and one processed incorrectly.
With this in mind, the secret of brainspotting lies in the fact that most people, when they remember traumatic experiences, experience a level of physiological arousal that can be excessive for them, and ends up leading to the fact that they do not properly process the situation (which prevents its improvement).
With brainspotting, on the other hand, areas related to visual and somatosensory information can be integrated, which allows that memory readjust the trauma without the need for anxiety or anguish, which is what happened with traditional methods and techniques.
How Brainspotting works
But ... How exactly is the technique applied? Well, the truth is that brainspotting is nothing more than a specific position of the eye, which is linked to an activation of a specific neuronal circuit in the brain, which is the one that stores information about our life.
The psychotherapist will look for that point while moving your eyes (and asks you, for example, if you feel more or less anxiety, etc.). And, once that point has been detected, the therapy itself will be worked on, while keeping your eyes fixed in that direction.
Since when you look in that direction the brain is in the process of recovering memories and processing them, it is normal for reasonably strong physiological and psychological reactions to appear. But that is what we have to work on in order for emotional healing to occur.
It seems magic, but not: It is science.
As you can see, the brainspotting therapy It is a great way to relieve the physical and emotional tension that results from events that cause emotional injury. Therefore, if you have had any trauma, you should evaluate the possibility of undergoing this therapy.