Through my own therapy experiences I learned the value of a non-judgmental, unconditional, accepting relationship. Therapy is not about giving advice or “fixing” a client, but allowing space for genuine emotion to be expressed and shared with another. The focus is not on getting rid of negative emotions, but learning how to tolerate them.
I believe our past and childhood experiences affect us both consciously and unconsciously on a neurological level. There are times we can specifically connect our current patterns to what we learned in the past; but there are other times we find ourselves reacting emotionally in an implicit way we don't understand nor can rationalize. It is exactly at this place where I am excited to utilize EMDR.
Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing (EMDR)
EMDR is an evidence-based practice for traumas of all types. The technique entails collaborating with the clinician to identify negative beliefs one has learned from past relationships/experiences that helped one survive those experiences, but currently cause suffering. Those negative beliefs become wired into our brains and carried in our physical bodies. We might be able to rationalize them, but cannot help that we still react emotionally to triggering events. Miraculously, through stimulating rapid-eye movement (akin to the process of dreaming), a person is able to reprocess that negative belief to a more adaptive response. The memory is not forgotten, but through reprocessing, it removes the distress from the experience so it is no longer emotionally activating to the person. This then frees up the person to live fully in the present.
For more detailed information including research on the process of EMDR visit: https://www.emdria.org/about-emdr-therapy/
Dialectic Behavior Therapy (DBT)
DBT is a combination of practicing mindfulness in the present moment, radical acceptance of suffering in life, and cognitive behavioral therapy to restructure and balance all-or-nothing thinking patterns. DBT has specific skills that create changes in the areas of distress tolerance, emotional regulation, and interpersonal effectiveness.