EMDR Therapy Series – Who can benefit from EMDR Therapy and How does it affect the brain?
Welcome back to our second article in our EMDR Therapy series as we prepare for our EMDR therapy Austin launch at Seeds of Change Counseling. In this article we will take a closer look at who can benefit from EMDR Therapy and how EMDR Therapy affects the brain.
EMDR Therapy – who can benefit?
EMDR Therapy can help children and adults of all ages. EMDR Therapy can be used by EMDR trained therapist to tackle a wide range of challenges. Some of these include:
How does EMDR Therapy affect the brain?
EMDR Therapy is an extensively researched psychotherapy method that has been found to effective and is proven to help people recover from trauma and other distressing life experiences, including PTSD, anxiety, depression, and panic disorders. Our brains have a unique ability to naturally recovering from upsetting events and memories. The EMDR International Association writes, “This process involves communication between the amygdala (the alarm signal for stressful events), the hippocampus (which assists with learning, including memories about safety and danger), and the prefrontal cortex (which analyzes and controls behavior and emotion). While many times traumatic experiences can be managed and resolved spontaneously, they may not be processed without help.”
Stress responses are part of our natural fight, flight, or freeze instincts. When distress from a disturbing event remains, the upsetting images, thoughts, and emotions may create feelings of overwhelm, of being back in that moment, or of being “frozen in time.” EMDR therapy helps the brain process these memories, and allows normal healing to resume. The experience is still remembered, but the fight, flight, or freeze response from the original event is resolved.”
EMDR is unique in that it does not require talking in detail about a distressing issue or completing homework between sessions to be effective. Instead of focusing on changing thoughts, emotions, and behaviors, EMDR Therapy harnesses the natural healing ability of the brain.
For more introductory information, check out the EMDR International Association (EMDRIA).
Join us next week as we continue to explore EMDR Therapy and how it can help you!
How can I get EMDR Therapy?
We are excited to begin offering EMDR Therapy Austin this month (September 2020) at Seeds of Change Counseling. The pandemic will not stand in your way to your path of healing, we will be able to offer remote EMDR Therapy sessions to all residents in the State of Texas. Call us now to schedule an appointment at 512-676-5813. Don’t struggle alone spinning your wheels, we are here to guide you on your path to healing.
In preparation for our EMDR therapy Austin launch at Seeds of Change Counseling, we start a series today exploring EMDR Therapy. Today we will explore the basics and answer the questions “what is EMDR Therapy?” and “how can it help me?”
EMDR Therapy – what does this alphabet soup even mean?
EMDR Therapy stands for Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing therapy. It was developed by Francine Shapiro, PhD in 1987. Although the words “eye movements” are front and center in the name, Dr. Shapiro is quoted as saying that if she had to name EMDR Therapy all over again that she would simply name it “reprocessing therapy” as there is much more involved in EMDR Therapy than eye movements. EMDR Therapy works to stimulate the information locked in the brain and allows the brain to reprocess the experience.
How can EMDR Therapy help me?
EMDR Therapy is an extensively researched psychotherapy method that has been found to effective and is proven to help people recover from trauma and other distressing life experiences, including PTSD, anxiety, depression, and panic disorders.
The EMDR International Association (EMDRIA) states that EMDR Therapy is recognized as an effective treatment by the American Psychiatric Association, the International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, the U.S. Dept. of Veterans Affairs/Dept. of Defense, The Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, and the World Health Organization among many other national and international organizations.
EMDR Therapy is unique in that it does not require talking in detail about a distressing issues or completing homework between sessions to be effective. Instead of focusing on changing thoughts, emotions, and behaviors, EMDR Therapy harnesses the natural healing ability of the brain.
For more introductory information, check out this video from the EMDR International Association (EMDRIA).
Join us next week as we continue to explore EMDR Therapy and how it can help you!
How can I get EMDR Therapy?
We are excited to begin offering EMDR Therapy Austin this month (September 2020) at Seeds of Change Counseling. The pandemic will not stand in your way to your path of healing, we will offer remote EMDR Therapy sessions to all residents in the State of Texas.
Call us now to schedule an appointment at 512-676-5813. Don’t struggle alone spinning your wheels, we are here to guide you on your path to healing.
Anticipatory anxiety typically occurs when you confront a situation, person, or event that has scared you in the past. Our brain stores these memories and our fight or flight response causes us to respond with a fear response to these situations. In this article, we will discuss what anticipatory anxiety is and how you can manage it.
What anticipatory anxiety looks like in everyday life
Months ago you booked your dream vacation, the one you always wanted to take, and you leave tomorrow. All day you have had tightness in your chest, sweaty palms, and an upset stomach but you just can’t explain why. You have never been afraid of flying, sure the turbulence during the last flight that you took was scary but you did not think it would affect you later. Well, the answer could be hidden in the experience you had during your last flight. Physical symptoms such as chest tightness, sweaty palms, and an upset stomach are typical ways that your body prepares you for an event that causes fear. Our brains store past experiences and program us to anticipate the worst. It is the body’s natural defense system revving up to ensure that we will get out of a situation should it be dangerous.
The issue occurs when we experience such anticipatory anxiety when we are not facing imminent danger. However, there is good news! There are techniques that you can employ to reduce the symptoms of anticipatory anxiety.
How to reduce anticipatory anxiety
If your anxiety appears to be interfering with your day to day activities, it might be time for professional help. Seek the help of a mental health professional such as a Licensed Professional Counselor to discuss your specific case. At Seeds of Change Counseling we offer in-person Austin therapy to the community or we offer online counseling for all residents of Texas. Our counselors are ready to support you as you go through this time, there is no need to struggle alone! Call us now at 512-676-5813 for a free counseling phone consultation for Austin therapy to see if we would be a good fit.
Meet our Austin Therapists
Are you ready for counseling? Do you live in Austin or the State of Texas? Do not let COVID-19 stop you from getting the help that you need, Seeds of Change Counseling is happy to provide online video counseling to all Texas residents during this time and Austin therapy online as well. At Seeds of Change Counseling in Austin, Texas we pride ourselves on being client focused, tailoring treatment to your needs, our Austin therapy office strives to create a warm, welcoming environmanet. Do not suffer alone, call us today to schedule a free phone consultation at 512-676-5813.
In this article we sit down with Jennifer Moore, MS, LPC, NCC founder of Seeds of Change Counseling for a casual conversation.
What do you love about counseling?
Helping my clients! My clients are incredibly resilient and strong, plus I enjoy getting to know them and being with them along the journey to the growth that they desire. I believe that all clients have the change that they are seeking within them and that a warm, safe, nonjudgmental environment is what they need to process and explore. I try to create that environment in my office (even the virtual one!). Counseling personally changed my life when I was going through a dark season, and I believe it can change anyone's life!
What do you say to a potential client who wants help but is anxious about therapy?
I have been in your shoes and still get nervous before beginning therapy with a new counselor! Know that it is completely normal to feel anxious about building a professional relationship with someone and sharing some of your deepest and scariest feelings. Try to keep in mind how wonderful it will feel to release some of the burden that you are carrying around and that you will be talking to a professional and objective person who will help you get to healing and change. I think Fred Rogers from Mister Rogers' Neighborhood said it best, "When we can talk about our feelings, they become less overwhelming, less upsetting, and less scary. The people we trust with that important talk can help us know that we’re not alone."
What are your thoughts about mental health during COVID-19?
Studies have shown that anxiety and depression is on the rise during this time. It is important, now more than ever, to make sure that you are connected to those you care about most. I view "social distancing" as a misnomer, it should be called "physical distancing" because we need social connection more than ever. Stay safe within the guidelines of your local and state government officials but make sure that you are seeking ways to maintain connection with others within those parameters. Technology also means that you do not need to suffer alone, most counselors are offering online video or phone therapy, including us here at Seeds of Change.
What are you looking forward to at Seeds of Change Counseling?
Right now we are midst of bringing a new specialty to the Austin therapy office to further support our clients who have been through trauma in their lives. We are working towards offering Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocess (EMDR) therapy to our clients in the Fall of 2020. This will enable us to service our clients and help alleviate the symptoms and distress that they experience connected to difficult and traumatic events that occurred in their lives. Stay tuned!
Besides counseling what do you enjoy?
I love to travel, and I miss it so much now during the coronavirus! I am a beach lover - hearing the ocean waves, feeling the sand between my toes, and feeling that fresh breeze on my face is my safe, relaxing place. Since I love the beach so much, I am typically dragging my husband to a new one somewhere in the Caribbean to relax and recharge. Besides traveling, I enjoy spending time with my family. We live in Austin, have a son in college, and 2 dogs. Right now with the pandemic going on, you can find us walking our dogs, trying to enjoy nature as much as we can within the confines of the safety guidelines.
Jennifer Moore, MS, LPC, NCC is a licensed professional counselor (LPC) in the State of Texas and sees clients at Seeds of Change Counseling online and in Austin, Texas. Do not suffer alone, call us today to schedule a free phone consultation at 512-676-5813.
You cannot escape it, every time you turn on the news or look at your social media feed there it is: more news about COVID-19. Maybe you started feeling a bit less anxious about the pandemic, but now it appears that cases are skyrocketing again. and that anxiety is setting in even more now.
First of all, know that you are not alone and that it is completely ok to feel anxious! The American Psychiatric Association recently released a poll indicating that "nearly four in ten Americans (40%) are anxious about becoming seriously ill or dying from coronavirus, but far more Americans (62%) are anxious about the possibility of family and loved ones getting coronavirus." This is an unprecedented time and there is a lot of unknown when it comes to COVID-19, so it is to be expected that you will feel some anxiety as a result. After all, we are likely living during a once in a lifetime event! In this article, we will cover some techniques that you can use to cope with and manage how you are feeling.
1. Limit media including the news and social media
We live in the information age where information is constantly bombarding us whether we want to digest it or not. Limiting your access to this media is especially important if you struggled with anxiety and worry prior to the start of the pandemic. A good tip is to schedule the amount of time you are spending consuming media for the day or the week. Regularly check in with yourself after media consumption, compare how you felt prior to reading or watching to how you feel afterwards. If you experience an increase in anxiety, reevaluate your schedule and try exposing yourself to less media going forward.
2. Focus on what you can control
Let's face it, there is not much that you can control when it comes to COVID-19, which can send your anxiety into a tail spin. A good technique to use is to focus on what you can control instead often times action can feel like an antidote to anxiety. This includes following the Center for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines available here. These guidelines include washing your hands often for 20 seconds, social distancing with 6 feet or more between yourself and others who are not in your household, among other recommendations. Read the CDC guidelines link for more information.
3. Stay connected
Social distancing should really be called physical distancing. Now it is more important than ever to maintain close social relationships even if you cannot see each other face to face. Take advantage of technology to maintain friendships and connect with those you care about most. Here are some ideas on how to maintain social relationships despite the coronavirus:
4. Start a regular mindfulness meditation practice
Mindfulness meditation is a good place to start as it does not require a teacher and can be practiced alone. There are several YouTube videos that you can use for free to try such as the ones listed below:
5. Take a mindful walk around your neighborhood
Mindfulness does not just have to include sitting still and breathing deep, take your mindfulness practice on the go with a mindful walk around your neighborhood! Leave your earbuds at home and lace up your comfy shoes. As you walk, utilize all five senses to keep yourself in the here and now. Observe 2-3 things per sense.
6. Start a gratitude journal
Begin keeping a gratitude journal once or twice a week. Such a journal can serve as a good reminder that there are still things to be grateful despite COVID-19. Not all gratitude journals are created equal, in order for yours to make the most impact, check out these tips on how to keep a gratitude journal.
When is it time for professional help?
Feeling anxious during the coronavirus is completely normal, even after you started feeling a bit better. Be patient with yourself and try some of the above techniques to manage your anxiety. If you are not improving, it is probably time to talk to a trained professional to process your anxiety. You do not have to suffer alone. If you live in the State of Texas and are interested in video counseling, Seeds of Change Counseling would be happy to help, call us for a free phone consultation to see if we are a fit at 512-676-5813.