Ian Hoge LMFT
Psychotherapy, Brainspotting, Meditation, Yoga
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Santa Monica, CA
Brainspotting Trauma Therapy
What is Brainspotting?
Brainspotting is an alternative to traditional talk therapy and is aimed at helping us get unstuck. Talk therapy utilizes the left hemisphere, the verbal side, of the brain and can help us understand our feelings and actions to facilitate positive change. However, some feelings linger despite continued talk therapy. This is because trauma, distress, and upset are stored in the non-verbal portion of the brain and can be felt throughout our body. Over the course of a lifetime, trauma and emotional pain accumulate and are stored deep within the brain as “brain spots.” The stored trauma and pain give rise to a wide range of emotional and body-based symptoms. If you recall an upsetting memory, you may still feel the distress in your body—tightness in your chest or pit in your stomach. That is upset stuck in your body. Talk therapy is often helpful, though it may not access the area where trauma and upset are stored; thus the pain is stuck and persists. Brainspotting helps you access and heal the area where trauma and upset are stuck.
How Does Brainspotting Work?
Brainspotting uses eye positions and a technique called bilateral stimulation where you listen to music or sounds through headphones alternately in your left and right ears. Along with guidance from the therapist you identify “spots” in the limbic center of the brain where emotional memory is processed and stored. Using this principle, client and therapist work together to identify the eye position (brain spot) that correlates with the emotional memory, then process the activated spot to reduce the intensity of the stored trauma and pain. Research indicates by alternating between left and right hemispheres of the brain, the brain and body reprocess information. Reprocessing allows the brain and body to release the stuck energy from the trauma. Memory is retained, but the emotional arousal or charge will be released.
Brainspotting is effective for:
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
Depression and Anxiety
Trauma and Abuse
Performance Anxiety and Enhancement