If you never had any emotional disturbance or trauma it probably means you don’t have a physical body. Those familiar with bio-energetic medicine know that you feel emotions in the body. We’ve all felt the “sting” of a bad breakup, the sense of “drowning” in the abyss of depression or the “heaviness” of grief when losing a loved one. Many of us can go through several sessions of talk therapy and still have no feeling of resolution from trauma. Now why is this? Often times, traditional counseling or psychological treatment only engages the conscious part of the mind and doesn’t address the physical aspect of emotional trauma.
Because trauma is so overwhelming, we cannot consciously process the event. Consequently, our unconscious has to deal with the emotional distress. Deep in the psyche, these unprocessed emotional memories start to “fester”. You’re actually reliving your traumas unconsciously at every waking moment. As time passes, you feel the weight of these unresolved memories eating away at your very soul. This wouldn’t be a long-term, significant problem if you didn’t have a nervous system.
The nervous system allows you to react to stimuli. For example, you see an angry dog charge towards you and you run! That’s the sympathetic nervous system at work. Another example, you’re eating a meal and the automatic function of digestion engages. That’s the parasympathetic nervous system at work. What most people don’t realize is that the nervous system doesn’t just react to outer stimuli, it reacts to internal stimuli as well. Remember all those unresolved emotional memories? Your inner issues are just as valid as external stimuli. This is why emotional trauma is difficult to overcome. Not only is it constantly being replayed in the unconscious, it’s being experienced in the body at the nervous system level.
When your body/nervous system is overwhelmed by outer and inner stimuli, your autonomic nervous systems starts to show “mistiming”. This can manifest into physical symptoms like chronic pain, fatigue, sleep disturbance, digestive issues or even unexplained infertility. Classic example: restless leg syndrome can indicate that your fight-flight response is inappropriately engaged when you’re trying to sleep. This should tell you there’s stimuli that’s interrupting the parasympathetic function of the rest response. Obviously, the stimuli is not outside of you. While laying in your bed, there’s nothing chasing you. So one can only conclude that the mistiming of the fight-flight response is initiated by a stimuli that’s internal.
Fortunately, most of my clients don’t wait for their traumatic emotional memories to manifest into chronic physical symptoms (if they do, we address that too). To help resolve their issues, I address the needs of the unconscious and the reality of the body. The key to helping people feel resolution from trauma is to create a stimuli in the unconscious that’s just as powerful as the original trauma. This stops the endless loop of trauma being relived and finally sets the nervous system at ease as oppose to dis-ease.
The stimuli the unconscious wants is always fascinating for me. It’s not always purely emotional. Sometimes the trauma requires something deeply spiritual, primal or archetypal to bring to the surface of your conscious awareness. Other times the unconscious wants something to engage the subtle energies of the body or even address the needs of a certain aspect of the unconscious (i.e. super ego, id, repressed-self, higher-self, animus/anima).
My Emotional & Relationship Trauma group session is for those who want to resolve traumas remembered. Though if there’s childhood issues that an attendee doesn’t quite remember, those can be addressed as well. This sessions can benefit anyone who wants to make large strides in healing difficult matters of the heart.
-Oliver Oliveros, B.E.S.T. practitioner