We bring you another article written by Jeannie Smith: the expert at putting all of us “Humpty Dumpties” back together again. If you’ve got pain, you can feel better…it’s your choice.
“Free your mind”
Sometimes as a caregiver to someone has been traumatized, we get can get caught up in the aftermath of the trauma as the person we care for processes what has happened and the coping mechanisms that they have had to use to survive. It is easy sometimes to get overwhelmed and pushed over our threshold when negative attitudes and behaviors are being processed and released by those we care for. In these situations, it is important that we to be sure to take care of ourselves as well.
As a part of my bodywork practice, oftentimes, I teach my clients self help techniques that will benefit them when they are outside of an appointment. This can be anything from stretching certain muscle groups, exercises that they can do or learning ways to shift the way that they react to stressful situations.
Sometimes when children act out and we are faced with a situation that is happening around us that pushes us over our threshold, we become fearful. We tend to lose control. We get overwhelmed by fear and fail to think clearly. We become reactive rather than proactive. Part of the reason that we get overwhelmed when our children are out of control is because their behavior reminds us of a time in our past where we felt threatened or afraid, for example, our parents used a particular tone when they did not approve of what we did. This does not mean that the person in our present life who uses that tone is thinking the same way our parents did. We are looking at mental procedures that we set up ages ago to protect us and have probably forgotten about them. These are programs that once insured our survival, but now they hinder us.
When traumatized children act out and behave poorly, is it because they are afraid and under stress. It may not seem like these are the underlying emotions, but the truth is, there is only love and fear. When we as parents are pushed over our threshold, we can become stressed out and fearful. When we are fearful and resist what is going on around us, we can get sucked into the negative behavior and become a part of the cycle and perpetuate this negative programming. The last thing that a child needs at a stressful time is fear. The first thing they need is to be treated with unconditional love. They need to feel safe. They need to know that as parents, we will take care of them and everything is going to be okay.
What we need to do is to free ourselves from these negative ways of thinking and acting so that we can learn to respond better to a stressful situation. In these types of circumstances we need to use our brains, not our emotions. By clearing out mental debris, we can develop more appropriate ways of thinking. We can free ourselves from negative emotions and regain mastery of our minds.
In order for us to do this, we have to be centered and focused. We have to change our focus and transform our emotional stress. When we have highly emotionally charged thoughts because we are under stress, the mind, like a computer, starts a process of analyzing the reasons for the stress, calculating what to do next and brings up past memories of what happened the last time you felt that way. In order to transform emotional stress, it is important to clear strong negative emotions and past programming as it comes up. As soon as you start to feel your emotions going sideways, try this short, effective breathing technique:
Choose to step back from your emotions and focus on your breathing. Take a slow, deep breath and imagine that you are breathing in love through the heart area in the center of your chest. Next, try to disengage from your stressful thoughts and emotions as you breathe out fear through your heart center. This will help you to clear your mind and oxygenate the brain. Do this technique three times. This short breathing technique will give you a chance to neutralize the negative emotional charge and refocus.
When you are in a stressful situation, you breathe in short, shallow breaths. To de-stress, do the opposite, breathe deeply. Deep breathing helps to clear and focus the mind and releases you from anxiety so that you can become proactive rather than reactive in stressful situations. Escape entrapment by clearing out your mental garbage and developing new ways of thinking. Don’t be overwhelmed by your or another’s emotions. Take control of your feelings and take control of your life. This simple breathing technique helps us to hit the reset button clearing negative emotions and freeing the mind.
Jeannie Smith is nationally certified in therapeutic massage and bodywork. She specializes in Myofascial Release, Craniosacral Therapy and Body Memory Recall. Her specialty is connective tissue. Her practice encompasses the greater Hampton Roads area of Virginia to include Norfolk and Virginia Beach. To contact Jeannie, visit her website at: www.jeannieasmith.com, by email at email@example.com or by phone at 7572876135.