Brainspotting, an internationally acclaimed method to heal trauma and improve wellbeing and performance, was discovered in 2003 by David Grand, Ph.D., Psychotherapist, Lecturer, Author, Humanitarian, and Performance Coach.
Over 7,000 therapists have been trained in BSP in the US, South America, Europe and the Middle East. Monika Summerfield completed her training in Brainspotting Level 2 in 2009. She finds that this method complements very well with EMDR, and for some is experienced as a gentler way to clear trauma. Particularly individuals with a wide range of trauma enjoy the combination of bilateral music and allowing the ‘brainspot” to resolve the wounding. Nevertheless it’s working is deeply felt, physically and emotionally one is feeling lighter, and at more at ease as the treatment progresses.
“Where we look affects how we feel”. BSP makes use of this natural phenomenon through its use of a relevant eye position. This helps the Brainspotting therapist to locate, focus, process and release a wide range of emotionally and bodily-based conditions. BSP is a brain-based tool that taps into and harnesses the body’s natural self-scanning, self-healing ability. When a Brainspot is stimulated, the deep brain appears to reflexively signal the therapist that the source of the problem has been found. Brainspotting can also be used to find and strengthen our natural resources and resilience or even enhance our performance and creativity. It is most powerful when used with BioLateral music.
A “Brainspot” is the eye position, which is related to the energetic/emotional activation of a traumatic/emotionally charged issue within the brain, most likely in the amygdala, the hippocampus, or the orbitofrontal cortex of the limbic system. Located by eye position, paired with externally observed and internally experienced reflexive responses, a Brainspot is actually a physiological subsystem holding emotional experience in memory form.
When a Brainspot is stimulated, the deep brain reflexively signals the therapist that an area of significance has been located. This typically happens outside of the client’s conscious awareness. There are a multitude of reflexive responses, including eye twitches, wobbles, freezes, blinks (hard and double blinks) pupil dilation and constriction, narrowing, facial tics, brow furrowing, sniffs, swallows, yawns, coughs, head nods, hand signals, foot movement and body shifting. Reflexive facial expressions are indicators of Brainspots.
The appearance of a reflexive response as the client attends to the somatosensory experience of the trauma, emotional or somatic problem is an indication that a Brainspot has been activated. The Brainspot can then be accessed and stimulated by holding the client’s eye position while the client is focused on the somatic/sensory experience of the symptom or discussing a problem during the therapy.
The maintenance of that eye position/Brainspot within the attentional focus on the body’s “felt sense” of that issue or trauma stimulates a deep integrating and healing process within the brain. This processing, which appears to take place at a reflexive or cellular level within the nervous system, brings about a de-conditioning of previously conditioned, maladaptive emotional and physiological responses.
Brainspotting is a powerful, focused treatment method that works by identifying, processing and releasing core neurophysiological sources of emotional/body pain, trauma, dissociation and a variety of other challenging symptoms. Brainspotting is a simultaneous form of diagnosis and treatment, enhanced with Biolateral sound, which is deep, direct, and powerful yet focused and containing.
Brainspotting functions as a neurobiological tool to support the clinical healing relationship. As neurobiological attachment research has shown, there is no replacement for a mature, nurturing therapeutic presence and the ability to engage another suffering human in a safe and trusting relationship where they feel heard, accepted, and understood.
Feel free to check in with me if you feel this method could be helpful to you.