Trauma refers to any mental, emotional, or physical event that creates feelings of helplessness. Trauma can be so extreme that you cannot process the emotions it causes. Suppressing emotions can lead to seemingly causeless symptoms that are directly tied to trauma.
Unfortunately, without getting to the root cause of jumpiness, shaking, difficulty sleeping, emotional numbness, etc., we are forced to endure cyclic episodes of fight-flight-freeze. You may be stuck in one survival mode and feel persistent unrest. Thankfully, there are ways to break the cycle.
Somatic experiencing is a therapeutic process that helps patients determine where they may be trapped in the fight, flight, or freeze mode. Once you and your therapist determine where in the cycle you are, you can create a treatment plan tailored to your psychological needs. You will use somatic techniques to release your trauma and restore the emotional self.
If you’re interested in learning about somatic experiencing and how it can help you overcome your trauma, continue reading about this form of trauma counseling.
What Is Body Trauma?
Animals are naturally effective at cycling through the survival response, allowing them to bounce back quickly from threat. People, however, are not nearly as skilled at discharging these energies. When we have endured trauma, we will repetitively go through activation and fear. On a biological level, these energies are stored in the body and if they are not released, the emotions and survival responses will repeat themselves.
What Is Somatic Experiencing?
Somatic experiencing and trauma counseling can teach the person to work through the responses they need to unleash in order to release trauma survival energies. People develop coping strategies that prevent them from experiencing their trauma. These mental coping skills make it difficult to discharge negative energies in the first place. Although we develop these mechanisms to deal with stress, they are problematic because we remain stuck in fear.
What Is Involved In A Trauma Counseling Session?
Through trauma counseling, you can learn to experience and release the emotions and sensations associated with your trauma. This way, you can bring yourself down to baseline and heal from whatever you may have been through. You will learn the ability to hold space for stress. As you go through trauma counseling, you will work through your body's memories using somatic techniques, so that you can build yourself back up.
During a somatic trauma counseling session, you will learn strategies to release tension using grounding exercises, sensation-based observations, and breathing exercises. The actual release of your pain may take place via shaking, crying, jumpiness, flashbacks, etc. You will reach the height of these emotions, release them, and ultimately resolve with deeper self-regulation.
Regain Your Emotional Stability
There is a great deal of supporting evidence that emotions are stored in the body. When we learn how to access these emotions, listen to what our bodies are saying, and work with the body to heal, we can let go of built-up pain and trauma and finally regain our sense of stability.
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