What is Brainspotting?
“Brainspotting is based on the profound attunement of the therapist with the patient, finding a somatic cue and extinguishing it by down-regulating the amygdala. It isn’t just PNS (Parasympathetic Nervous System) activation that is facilitated, it is homeostasis.” — Robert Scaer, MD, The Trauma Spectrum
Many of my clients seek to work with me because I am a Certified Brainspotter. They may have heard about the modality through a friend or healing practitioner; however, most only have a vague idea of what it is. And that is because it is hard to explain in words, as each client’s experience is unique. Many different factors impact the process and results.
If you’re like most people, you haven’t heard of brainspotting. However, it might be worth considering if you’re looking for a way to heal from trauma, improve your physical and mental health or overcome unconscious limiting beliefs. Brainspotting is a therapy that uses eye movement to help the brain process and release emotions. Dr. David Grand developed it in 2003; since then, over 13,000 therapists have been trained worldwide in this modality. Brainspotting is gentle, powerful, and based on the current neuroscientific understanding of how our mind and body store and process memories, emotions, and trauma.
How Brainspotting Works – The theory behind brainspotting
Our eyes are connected to our brains, and specific eye movements can help us access and release emotions stored in the brain and body. When we experience trauma, our brains often go into survival mode and store the unresolved memories of the event. This can lead to symptoms like anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
Brainspotting is a way to help the brain and body process and release unresolved emotions and memories, both conscious and unconscious, from the subcortical brain. During a session, a clinician will use a pointer to guide the client’s gaze through a series of eye positions using client feedback and external cues. This process enables the release of emotions associated with the event. Brainspotting practitioners believe in the body and the brain’s innate capacity to heal.
I particularly like Brainspotting because it works for both internal and external processors. This means there is no need to speak or verbally express or share. Talk therapy is traditionally difficult for people who struggle to put words to feelings, memories, and emotions. With Brainspotting, there is no need to talk. Brainspotting uses a dual attunement framework, which is a synchronicity between client and therapist. The attunement activates mirror neurons, which causes a kind of syncing of nervous systems.
Here is a link to related research:https://brainspotting.com/about-bsp/research-and-case-studies/
Benefits of Brainspotting
There are many benefits of brainspotting, including reducing symptoms of anxiety, depression, PTSD, and other mental health conditions. It can also help with physical ailments like chronic pain and migraines. Brainspotting can also enhance performance and strengthen natural resources and resilience.
In this video Dr. Grand explains Brainspotting. If you are interested, it is worth the watch. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lm3Plvaf3UE
If you’re interested in trying brainspotting or have questions, please reach out. I am happy to connect.