Are you a trauma-informed therapist? It would be hard to miss hearing these buzzwords bouncing around the world of behavioral treatment. Being a trauma-informed therapist means being aware not only of your client’s presenting systems, but also seeking their cause in any past trauma that may be present.
The Problem: Trauma creates deep wounds
Trauma, whether the abuse takes the form of verbal, physical, sexual, or spiritual acts that harm a person’s sense of self and/or personal safety, creates conditions that often present themselves in our clients. On its website, the the Veterans Administration of the US states:
“Going through trauma is not rare. About 6 of every 10 men (or 60%) and 5 of every 10 women (or 50%) experience at least one trauma in their lives. Women are more likely to experience sexual assault and child sexual abuse. Men are more likely to experience accidents, physical assault, combat, disaster, or to witness death or injury.”
Some of the trauma-induced issues that present themselves, and that we encounter in our clients are:
- Flashbacks, intrusive thoughts, nightmares
- Avoiding any reminders of trauma
- Depression and hopelessness
- Extreme anxiety and fear
- A feeling of being overwhelmed
- Loss of interest in once-enjoyed activities
- Withdrawal from friends, family, and social events
- Emotional numbness and difficulty feeling pleasure
- Difficulty sleeping
- Lack of appetite
- Angry or violent outbursts
- Trouble concentrating or thinking
- An exaggerated startle response, being on edge constantly
- Impulsive behaviors
- Difficulty engaging with others or forming relationships
- Suicidal thoughts and behaviors
As therapists, we want to hear the stories of our clients’ lives, come to understand what they are going through, and then help them to work through solutions. We want them, ultimately, to function without experiencing these seemingly unmanageable behavior patterns. We listen to them, and let them try to make sense out of what is going on inside of them.
When trauma is identified as a possible cause for disturbing symptoms, we can address the issue with further listening and more encouragement. However, it will take a great deal of time for clients to come to terms with the trauma and how it has affected their lives by simply talking it through. Sometimes, their memories of trauma are incomplete, or in some cases, even totally absent.
What can you do, as a therapist, to speed this process and put your clients on the road to healing faster than talk therapy will allow?
The solution: Heart-Centered Hypnotherapy heals trauma at the source
Heart-Centered Hypnotherapy provides a gateway to healing trauma by allowing clients to get back to the source of their distress. This is accomplished by leading the client into a relaxed state, and have them identify the emotions that underlie their anxiety, depression, or other unwanted condition.
Once the emotion is identified, and the client has an opportunity to release it through remembering a recent experience, then the real healing begins. The client is then regressed back to earlier times when that emotion came up. In this regressed state, clients can be in the moment that little child or otherwise younger version of themselves experienced the trauma.
Guiding them through the old memories, the Heart-Centered Hypnotherapist allows the client to express the feelings directly, as though the client were right back where it all happened. There, they can safely release the feelings that they were unable to express during the traumatic experiences. The process can be repeated, usually two or three times each session, to make patterns clear to the client.
The therapist then asks the client what conclusions were made at that time. Was the client helpless, weak, ineffective, invisible? How did the client choose to behave as a result of this feeling? Did they decide to act out, become withdrawn, or start self-destructive habits? The client will always know exactly what that younger part thought and did after each of the traumatic experiences.
From there, the therapist may offer tools for toning down anxiety or cravings for addictive substances. Feelings such as fear and loneliness can also be titrated, as the client becomes better acquainted with the parts that needed the nurturing and protection that were not available at the time of the trauma.
In the healing portion of the session, the therapist offers opportunities for the client to go back to the old conclusions and reframe them with new and positive affirmations. “I’m helpless” is transformed to “I am strong.” A person who once hid from loud noises can tolerate them now, knowing that the traumatic experience is in the past.
The client is “brought back” from the session with a renewed sense of passion for life, an awareness of what needs to be healed, and compassion for parts of the self that may have been ignored for a very long time. While there’s never a promise that anyone can experience full healing in just one session, Heart-Centered Hypnotherapy certainly accelerates the healing process in ways that talk therapy simply cannot address.
At The Wellness Institute, we have had tremendous success treating clients with trauma in need of healing. Those who once seemed paralyzed by self-defeating thoughts gain confidence and personal power they never thought to be possible.
Learn Heart-Centered Hypnotherapy - in six days!
As a therapist, no doubt you would like to be able to work this kind of healing magic with your clients. While Heart-Centered Hypnotherapy is an art that can take many years to master, you can begin to use it in your practice after our six-day training.
In our six-day training, you’ll learn how hypnosis works, how to conduct an induction, and how to treat various types of issues, including:
- Sexual abuse
- The Mind-Body connection
- Eating disorders
- Sex Addiction
- Healthy Relationships
- Healthy Completions
You’ll also get opportunities to experience being an observer, a client, and a therapist during your initial training. This experiential learning is what makes it possible for you to receive healing of your own, as you learn a new modality you can use to help your clients to heal.
Now, more than ever, people are experiencing trauma and waiting for you to help them to live longer, stronger, and fuller lives.