There are wounds that never show on the body that are deeper and more hurtful than anything that bleeds.” ― Laurell K. Hamilton
Are You Continuing To Struggle After A Traumatic Experience?
Have you experienced trauma through an accident, disaster, the death of a loved one, a severe illness, abuse or military combat? Are you hypersensitive to situations that remind you of your traumatic experience? When a subtle sense triggers a traumatic memory, do you often feel like your trauma is happening all over again? Perhaps you avoid spending time with loved ones or friends because you believe it is easier to isolate yourself rather than risk triggering a traumatic memory. Or maybe you feel hopeless or overwhelmed with racing thoughts and uncomfortable body sensations. Have you faced secondary trauma – during which you were ridiculed or blamed for your traumatic experience – making it even harder to seek help? Do you wish you could feel like yourself again and regain the confidence needed to live a happy, connected and meaningful life?
Trauma can make you feel stuck and unable to function normally. You may wake up in the morning dreading daily activities because you worry you will get triggered by something and experience a traumatic flashback. You may be suffering from racing anxious thoughts, making it difficult to concentrate at work or at home. Relationships with family and friends may be strained because of a disconnection or lack of trust in others. At the end of the day, you may feel hopeless and use alcohol or substances to numb overwhelming thoughts and emotions. At night, you may struggle to fall asleep and stay asleep because you have recurring nightmares related to your traumatic experience.
You Are Not Alone In Your Struggle To Overcome Trauma
Although the types and effects of trauma vary widely, trauma is extremely common in our culture. Trauma is a biochemical disorder that results when normal people are faced with abnormal and frightening experiences during which their sense of safety was violated. Victims may re-experience trauma by talking about their memories or simply seeing, hearing, smelling or tasting something that reminds them of a specific time or place. It is also common for trauma survivors to feel helpless, however they often fear seeking help because they worry about remembering their traumatic experience in depth again.
Find Relief From Harmful Emotional Responses With Trauma Therapy
During safe and supportive trauma therapy sessions, you and your experienced Personal Growth Counseling therapist will develop an individualized plan to help you move past your trauma based on your specific experience and your needs. Part of initial trauma therapy includes forming a trusting relationship with your therapist. Another part is education on how the brain and emotional mind works. The emotional mind is comprised of your memories, thoughts and emotions that you experienced in the past. In some cases, the emotional mind saves you from making the same dangerous mistake again. But when you are faced with a highly traumatic event or prolonged abuse, the emotional mind can get stuck – and when it is triggered, you are forced to relive all of the emotions from your traumatic memory.
Depending on your specific traumatic experience as well as your comfort level in talking about your trauma, you and your therapist may move forward with different treatments. Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), clinical hypnosis, Rapid Resolution Therapy (RRT) and Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) are some of the most common and effective approaches used in trauma therapy.
Regardless of the specific treatment you and your therapist decide is best for you, effective trauma therapy must go beyond traditional talk therapy and dig deep to change the way your brain and body respond to traumatic memories. During sessions, your therapist can help you update the ingrained emotional responses created by your trauma that are keeping you stuck. By changing the way you perceive your trauma, you can begin to reframe thoughts, emotions and behaviors. And, as you go through the trauma therapy process, you and your therapist will work together to thoughtfully and deliberately deconstruct your traumatic memory. Through breaking memories down into more manageable pieces, you can finally and fully process the trauma. And while reconstructing memories and strengthen new skills, you can feel resilient when faced with future hurdles.
Depending on your needs and interests, your therapist can also incorporate art therapy, aromatherapy or theta music into sessions, which often bring faster and more effective relief.
Since 1994, the therapists at Personal Growth Counseling have helped countless adults and children overcome the debilitating effects of trauma. In fact, Dr. Carole Lovell did her doctoral work on trauma and has presented on trauma topics throughout the world. She has also written chapters in two notable trauma publications, EMDR Solutions: Pathways to Healing and Residential Treatment for Children & Youth.
Through our therapists’ extensive backgrounds in helping individuals from diverse backgrounds find relief, we know you, too, can move forward and start to feel like yourself again. With guidance, support and the right approach, it is possible to finally let go of trauma and start living life fully.
I believe I could benefit from trauma therapy, but still have a few questions and concerns…
I am afraid I will feel too vulnerable during trauma therapy sessions.
A fear of vulnerability is common for trauma survivors, especially those who struggle with trust or intimacy issues following a trauma. In order to create the safest environment, your therapist will approach each therapy session in a very gentle and cautious manner. During trauma therapy sessions, you will have the chance to set the pace of your treatment. You and your therapist will not dig deep into your experience until you are fully ready.
I believe my trauma is too overwhelming. Will trauma therapy work for me?
Trauma therapy can absolutely help you clear trauma from your mind and body. By putting in the effort during and after sessions as well as visualizing your recovery, you can find relief from the negative effects of trauma. You may think that your best option is to take medication to ease your daily pain. While medication can be helpful in some instances, it never really resolves deeper issues. On the other hand, trauma therapy is a sustainable and effective solution that can help you build the resiliency needed to fully engage in life.
I worry about the amount of time and money I will need to spend on trauma therapy.
Your psychological well-being is important in all areas of your life. Trauma therapy can have a profoundly positive effect on your relationships with your loved ones and friends, your work productivity and your overall health. Whether it is time or money, any investment you can make toward moving on after experiencing trauma will pay off in more ways than you can now imagine. In addition, making the courageous decision to seek trauma therapy earlier rather than later can make your recovery faster and save you time and money in the future.
You Can Overcome The Lingering Effects Of Trauma
If you are ready to clear through your trauma, we invite you to call us for a complimentary 20-minute phone consultation to discuss your needs and how trauma therapy can help you.