Trauma as it is understood by many, can be an overloaded term often associated with helplessness. In this blog post my goal is to bring its wisdom to the forefront so you can start to take your power back.
It is important to understand that It’s not what happened that matters, but how what happened made you feel inside. In that sense, trauma can be anything that made you feel negatively about yourself, and that you were unable to fully process and cope with. Therefore, a way of healing trauma is to understand what pushed you to respond in a certain way, and why you keep responding similarly to date. The goal is not to relive traumatising events, but rather to re-interpret them, so you can respond differently.
In his wonderful book Waking the Tiger - Healing Trauma, Dr. Peter Levine explains that, as a result of trauma, the body stores trapped energy. Therefore, in order to release that energy the brain seeks to recreate similar situations so we can respond differently to them. It uses metaphors, i.e. current representations of people, places etc. from the past. and then assigns a similar meaning to these metaphorical experiences (your interpretation of what is happening).
For example, as a child your mum might have constantly confided in you about your Dad’s behaviour, or sought your support during fights. In many instances, you might have felt helpless and also learned to keep your problems to yourself not to worry her further. You learned to put your needs second because it got you your mum's attention and love, and kept you safe. It became your coping mechanism. At the time, you didn’t have the tools, possibility or awareness to let her know that this was upsetting you. You didn’t know how to set healthy boundaries for yourself, express your own needs and seek support.
This could have been traumatising to you because, as I said earlier, trauma is not what happens, but how what happens makes you feel. The good news is that trauma is an incredible source of growth, if we are prepared to learn from it.
Therefore, you will be given plenty of opportunities to heal, because the brain will make sure to recreate those same circumstances in your current life, through how you perceive your experiences. For example, your boss could be a current metaphor for your mum. She might be going through a rough divorce and has been sharing her concerns with you. As a result you have reluctantly been accepting more workload, to take the weight off her shoulders and can’t bring yourself to tell her that you really need a week off to go to your best friend’s wedding. Sound familiar?
The wisdom comes from seeing the experience as an opportunity to act differently, by taking responsibility for the role you are playing and allowing the adult in you to take over. By re-interpreting your childhood experience, you might understand that your mum did the best she could with the tools she was given herself as a child. Therefore, from that place of understanding, you will be more in touch with your own needs and can allow yourself to do what nobody had taught her either: value yourself, set healthy boundaries, listen to your own needs first and learn to express them.
That’s why the purpose of a BNE session is not to erase past programs and beliefs, but rather to help you re-interpret them so that the adult in you can take its power back and choose to act differently, in the face of adversity. The goal is for you to see the bigger picture, connect the dots and understand what this is happening to you for.
If you feel stuck and need an extra hand to see the bigger picture, BioNeuroEmotion (BNE) is a wonderful method that will help you shift your perspective, so you can foster meaningful changes in your life by transforming your conflicts into stepping stones.
My mission is to empower men and women to move beyond their perceived limitations, step into their best selves and make a difference in the world. You can find out more about my work or book a one on one online session here.
Hi, I´m Dannie
A fellow soul seeker, blogger & certified BioNeuroEmotion® (BNE) practitioner who is passionate about growing, self actualising & learning in order to lead a more coherent/conscious life and help others do the same.