Rare is the woman who has not experienced trauma. Are you aware of a trauma that continues to trigger strong reactions of fear, rage, grief or helplessness – on a weekly or even daily basis?
If so, you’re in good company. Or perhaps you’re unaware of a particular trauma, but grew up in a household of neglect or abuse, and only know that your body and world have never felt like a safe place to reside. Personally, I can relate to both of these scenarios – and trauma has always showed up in my body as physical symptoms.
Here’s how this works: a traumatic event from the past causes triggers in the present, and these triggers create a chemical cascade of stress hormones that flood your bloodstream and tissues. In time, these chemicals wreak havoc on the health of your cells and decrease immune function, which leads to an overall decline in health. Over years of helping women heal from all kinds of chronic health conditions, I’ve found that trauma often lies at the root of many dis-ease processes.
So what constitutes trauma? Trauma is defined in different ways, but here’s my definition: an overwhelming experience that renders you helpless and/or hyper-vigilant, or a consistent reality that feels out-of-control and unbearable. Trauma can disrupt your system to such an extent, that a part of your consciousness splits off and remains frozen in time, while protective mechanisms such as denial, rationalization and avoidance kick into high-gear, to guard your consciousness from terror, shock, grief or other overwhelming emotions.
And here’s one of the main problems that persists: trauma that resides in the body may rob you of a sense of freewill, keeping you stuck in a painful past, and not being fully alive in the present.
Have you ever wondered how many psychiatric diagnoses may actually be attributed to trauma? Anxiety disorder, depression, Bipolar, OCD, even ADD. So many people are given drugs for these conditions. But drugs cannot cure trauma – only dampen a physiology that’s reacting to fear and overwhelm, based on an event from the past.
How many chronic illnesses have at their root trauma? Autoimmunity, cancer, persistent infection, ovarian cysts, infertility, inflammatory bowel disease – these are just some of the health issues that I’ve seen with trauma at their root.
If a person is unable to identify their feelings because they are too overwhelming and painful, they may show up in the body as migraines, fibromyalgia, IBS, back pain or fatigue. These are just some of the ways that trauma manifests in the body.
In the seminal book, The Body Keeps the Score by Bessel Van Der Kolk, MD, he states, “trauma robs you of the feeling that you are in charge of yourself, of what I will call self-leadership. The challenge of recovery is to reestablish ownership of your body and your mind – of your self. This means feeling free to know what you know and to feel what you feel without becoming overwhelmed, enraged, ashamed or collapsed.”
I would also add that healing from trauma gives you an opportunity to overcome the addictions that you’ve used to numb your consciousness. Intolerable feelings are often habitually masked by food, alcohol, screen-time or shopping. This is how your addictions function for you – keeping you from experiencing painful or overwhelming feelings in the moment.
Van Der Kolk also states, “It is especially challenging for traumatized people to discern when they are actually safe and to be able to activate their defenses when they are in danger.” This points to how trauma, can keep you enmeshed in very unhealthy situations. And I love the following statement of Van Der Kolk, which I find both poetic and tragic: “Trauma can turn the whole world into a gathering of aliens.” For those of us who have been traumatized by family members and those who were supposed to love and care for us, it can make all of humanity feel unsafe.
So how do we heal trauma that resides in the body? What does this look like? To start with, it’s a matter of recovering of a sense of safety, and learning to tolerate your difficult feelings without becoming overwhelmed.
If you’ve been effected by trauma, you need to learn to befriend the sensations in the body that feel threatening. Yoga, massage and other somatic therapies are great for this. Physical self-awareness is the first step, which is the basis for trauma therapies like Somatic Experiencing – where trauma is accessed and discharged via physical sensations and habitual gestures. Flower Essence Therapy is another wonderful tool that I’ve used with my clients for over 18 years. It is a gentle yet powerful catalyst for releasing trauma at the root.
Ultimately, humans are social beings, and traumatized people recover best in the context of relationships. Trusted relationships help us to tolerate and process the reality of what happened to us. Having a strong social support is the most powerful healer when it comes to trauma, says Van Der Kolk: “Being able to feel safe with other people is probably the single most important aspect of mental health; safe connections are fundamental to meaningful and satisfying lives.”
Recovery involves reconnecting with others that are safe, learning to tolerate your feelings without becoming overwhelmed, and ultimately integrating the aspects of your self that have been split off, and remain frozen in time. Integration also means putting the traumatic event into its proper place in the overall arc of your life.
One of the most powerful therapeutic tools for healing trauma is sharing your story in the presence of supportive people, and turning it into a narrative to be shared. If you’ve been hurt and victimized, it’s vital to acknowledge and name what’s happened to you. Feeling listened to and understood actually changes your physiology, which further helps you feel safe. Without language and context, your awareness may be limited to a vague sense of fear unconnected to the appropriate source.
I love to utilize and recommend artistic expression: journal writing, music, dance, and something I call “rage dumps” – where you use your imagination to play out the rage you feel towards a person that’s wronged you. It can be amazingly cathartic and freeing!
Telling your truth and the story of what happened to you is a powerful stance that changes you on a cellular level. To this end, I’d like to invite to come over to my FB page, to share your story of trauma: https://www.facebook.
I will respectfully read and hold space for each and every sharing.
Identifying what you feel in your body, sharing your story, releasing it, and then finding new ground – this is the pathway out of trauma…the pathway out of living a life on repeat loop and feeling trapped. This is the pathway to freedom.
I’m wishing you this complete freedom and healing from trauma…today and always.
With Love and Healing,
Clear Trauma and HEAL
FREE 1-1 Call With Me
Over the last 15 years, I’ve helped hundreds of women heal on the deepest level, through my unique system that gets to the roots of dis-ease and gets you back to living your fullest life!
Like my client N:
“When I first called Carla, I was emotionally overwhelmed, disoriented, scared and hopeless. With her exquisite support, I’ve developed a deep understanding and connection to my personal truth. I’ve found safety in my body, healed my relationship with my mother, let go of a romantic relationship that wasn’t right for me, and lost the incessant noise of anxiety and insecurity constantly in the background. Now, I feel more at peace and powerful than ever, and have arrived in my own flow. And…my latest ultrasound found that my uterine fibroid has completely disappeared! In short, this investment has given me greater returns than is possible to quantify. At my own pace, and with such patience and kindness, Carla has guided me toward a life of deep meaning, unconditional love, trust, and true happiness.”
NS, dancer and photographer.
I desire to help you heal the trauma in your body, and achieve this type of healing for your self. This week, I’ve opened up my schedule for complimentary 1-1 Calls for those needing my help.
If you know that a trauma continues to cause you harm, or if you’ve received a disturbing diagnosis, or have been ignoring or pushing through lingering health issues that no doctor seems to detect or know how to help…
If you’ve tried therapy, acupuncture, energy healing, nutrition, etc. – but NOTHING is really changing…
If you know deep down that you have the power to heal rather than continually living with a chronic health condition, but not sure how to proceed…
…then let’s talk.
The work I do is deep, powerful and beyond the realm of where most doctors and alternative practitioners even think to look!
That’s why I’m offering a handful of complimentary 1-1 Health Consultations, simply click HERE if you’d like to experience this type of support.
In this one phone call, we’ll have the opportunity to talk in depth about your health issues, while I hold space with intuitive listening. I’ll then provide resources, insight and a pathway towards eliminating your symptoms and transforming your health and life for good.
Click HERE to claim your complimentary, no-strings-attached phone session.
One of my favorite sayings is:
“The issues live in the tissues.”
Until we address these issues that take up residence in our cells and deplete our life force energy, we won’t truly heal.
Are you ready to get your vibrancy back? To get your full life back?
I’m here for you! Click HERE to schedule your spot now.
With Healing Love,
p.s. These 1-1 Complimentary Health Consultations will fill on a first-come first-serve basis. If you have an intuition, hope or curiosity about how I could help you heal the most unexplainable of symptoms, click HERE and let’s schedule a time to talk!
I so look forward to serving you, and uncovering your unique road back to the full life that calls. Feel free to email to learn more. Simply press HERE.