Where are you on the Trauma continuum?  

  • By Christina Skiftun
  • 06 Feb, 2017

By Lynn Fraser, Living Inquiries Senior Facilitator Trainer

girl

We have all experienced trauma. It could have been a life-threatening assault or a car accident that resulted in Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). A form of developmental PTSD results from long term trauma in childhood.  We may have been formally diagnosed or simply know for ourselves that something isn’t working right.

Exposure to sudden or short-term trauma results in a stress response. For many people, the state of being on red alert returns to baseline after a period of time. Trauma often sets the stage for growth, resilience and confidence in our ability to cope with challenging circumstances. People with prior trauma may have more severe symptoms that don’t resolve with time.

Common responses to trauma include a high startle reflex or hyper arousal, anxiety, depression, difficulty sleeping, sadness, anger, guilt, fear, flashbacks, confusion and feeling numb or immobilized. This simply means your system is now reacting in a certain way to threat or perceived threat. As frightening as it is to feel hijacked by our primitive brain, our response really is just part of the Fight/Flight/Freeze mechanism.

Addiction and compulsions are a way many of us avoid and manage our responses to trauma and this leads to more suffering. It can feel like we are war within ourselves, like our brain is so damaged we will never experience relief and happiness. Working with an experienced facilitator in the Living Inquiries can help provide the safety we need to heal. Energy or sensations that we may have experienced as threatening, can come to be seen and felt simply as our body’s response to a perceived danger.

When we’re able to allow a sensation or energy, images will often arise that are related to being unsafe. Through the repeated experience during inquiry of seeing that words and images themselves don’t threaten us, the stickiness or Velcro effect dissolves and we can stay with the energy itself.

Over time, I have grown to appreciate my defense or protective mechanisms. These allow us to survive and get through tough situations. Substance addictions like alcohol, drugs, and food or process addictions like shopping, work, Facebook or porn are just coping strategies we may have used. Compulsions are an understandable response to trauma. Knowing this helps us let go of shame and judgment and opens up space for letting go of strategies that create more suffering.

Our system’s response to trauma makes sense. When we look at what actually happens, we can understand and watch the process as it arises. I look out for certain types of thoughts or reactions because they are clues that a trauma response may be activated. With this awareness, I can support myself through relaxed breathing, sleep, walking in nature, gentle yoga and inquiry. Given my past history of trauma and PTSD, I may always have a more reactive or sensitive Fight/Flight/Freeze response. Through the Living Inquiries, I know in my bones there is no threat in any bodily sensation. Trauma moves through and my system resets back to calm and peace.

 

 

Lynn Fraser

Living Inquiries Senior Facilitator Trainer


Posted from:  http://naturalrestforaddiction.com/trauma-continuum/

Yoga Calgary Blog

By Yoga Studio Calgary 20 Nov, 2017
Fear by definition is an unpleasant emotion caused by the belief that someone or something is dangerous, likely to cause pain, or a threat. There is one very powerful word in this sentence, "belief".....Fear is caused by a belief. A belief is an acceptance that something is true and exists. So if fear is merely a belief and a belief is simply an acceptance, can't we accept a new belief? The instant I did, virtually everything changed in my life for the better. The biggest challenge is recognizing fear for what it is, and knowing an actual fear is never as scary as the ones you imagine. There are things that happen throughout your day that cause you to react or feel a certain way, mostly negative. These can be called triggers. Triggers occur because of core beliefs we all have well rooted in our souls. These core beliefs are all based on fear. You begin to fear the outcome of things and events you don't even know will ever happen simply because your mind is hard-wired too. This fear based reality is crippling to your success, happiness and peace. So what begins to happen when you hard-wire your mind for happiness and security. You begin to know a world you may have said you could have only ever imagined of.

1) You will see what happens in your life as something that simply happened and did not happen to you. It had a start, it had an end, and there is no need to let any of that energy linger in your soul. Humans tend to make everything so personal. You assume that this happened because of something lacking or wrong in you. You think it would have never happened if you were just "not so this", or "better at that"..... This simply is not true. This is a lie you are telling yourself. You convince yourself of this because it keeps you safe and protected. As soon as you begin a journey of leaning into your fears, your discomforts, your worries. As soon as you begin to see that fear there, you become aware that this isn't you, it is a message telling you "hey, here's a little something where you can show up for yourself". An opportunity to meet your own needs for safety, nourishment, joy. You begin to see that there is separation between who you are, and what you are doing. It isn't about stopping all of the crazy from happening in your life. It is about developing the resilience to ride the wave straight through the crazy without getting knocked down.

2) You begin to notice the infinite amount of abundance that surrounds you in all forms. Abundance of love, success, happiness, contentment. There are only two states you can be functioning from, fear or love. When you shift into living a love based life, all you see and experience is love and success. The mind has the ability to ruin anything it wants. It does this because it is seeking control. We cannot control the world around us, so we control our thoughts. If your thoughts are fear based, how do you think the world around you will be and feel? If your thoughts are love based how do you think your world will be and feel? Mmm hmm! Establishing new thought patterns is merely creating a new habit. One that is easy to establish with the right and appropriate force and in the right conditions.

3) Success begins to chase you! Financial success, relationship success, personal success, family success, successes of all kinds will begin leaping at you. Living a love based life instead of a fear based life brings you into alignment with the universal principle of your unique soul purposes. It is from this state that literally anything is possible, anything! We are all energy (vibrating particles) like energy seeks like energy, it is a law of physics. If you can imagine it, you can have it......but only when you're aligned with the universal principle of your unique soul purpose.

4) Life becomes easy. You step into the flow of life. This chanel of positive and vibrant energy that carries you through life peacefully, establishes deep resilience within you. Your moments are pure and full of good, instead of stressful, tough or scary. Life lifts you up and doesn't knock you down. Things that were once scary or hard for you, you will now see as amazing opportunities.

Don't ever allow yourself to be intimidated by what you don't know. When you move past fear you begin to see who you are, and that is your super power. I promise you, you can only imagine the creations that will explode from you when you step away from fear and into love.
By Yoga Studio Calgary 13 Nov, 2017
While the 60 to 90 minutes you spend on your yoga mat a few days a week certainly helps, it is no match for the chronic stress and tension you place on your body during the rest of the day in your desk job.
 
Sitting at a desk for hours on end places unnecessary strain on the lumbar spine, overstretches the mid to upper back, and shortens the chest and hips—leading to neck, shoulder, and low back pain. Try this simple office yoga  sequence when you cannot get to your favorite class.
By Yoga Studio Calgary 07 Nov, 2017
Negativity does not naturally dwell in your body, yet you have a bias for it. When is enters your thought patterns and your cellular consciousness, it sticks to you like Superglue. This negativity bias affects much of your life. Impacting your choices, creating a lens through which you see your world, and ultimately weaken your ability to withstand or recover quickly from difficult conditions - the weakening of your resilience. This is merely a habit and habits can be changed under the right conditions and forces. In other words a practice of inquiry and mindfulness will allow you to bounce back far faster than before.

1) You are tossing away your power like it were confetti! You go on throughout your day spreading and depositing your energy wherever you go. Driving your kids to sports practice, rushing to get a project in before the deadline, doing the grocery shopping, laundry and house cleaning. Every time depleting your own source of life, what you rely on to power you through the day. Spreading and sharing your energy is great, it is needed, you most likely care for a number of people in your life. Never forget to replenish it. The best ways to do so are through a yoga practice....not just attending a yoga class or two, but actually committing to a yoga practice (a few classes a week). Yoga has been proven to increase energy (prana or qi) in the body and remove stagnant or blocked energy.

2) Doubt infects you like the plague. When we hold a thought pattern in your mind, your thoughts, you hold it in your cellular body. This thought
pattern cripples your ability to have any hope (the number one sensation to hold in life) that your life is in fact not happening to you, but
around you. Doubt clouds your viewpoint. In reality, something may be wonderful and good, but you can't see that, you have the lens of doubt on. If you are doubting the outcome of something you would really like to be positive, ask yourself, what percentage of certainty do you have
that the doubtful outcome will actually happen.

Honestly you can't tell me even 0.1% because you can not see into the future and you do not know anything of this nature to be true or not....so stop worrying and feeling doubtful. Replace those feelings with love, breathe in say to yourself "love", breathe out say to yourself "love" or simply just take a mindful breath.

3) You are forgetting you already have everything you need. Really you do! Love, power, manifestation, resilience... these and much more are
all your birthright. You use negative thought patterns, internal criticism, judgement, rendered impressions of past experiences, and fear to
cloudy your innate and all mighty capability to understand that you don't need to earn anything, you don't need to attain any level of existence.
It's all already in you, you've already made it! You simply need to access it....how do you ask? by being aware that you are the being and
not the doing. Knowing you do not need to seek any form of approval, status, existence empowers you to know the feeling of resilience
through strength of identity in the being and not the doer.

4) You forgot to look for the good, look for the helpers. You can actually re-wire your brain for positivity by simply having that perspective. The
more you focus on the good, the more good there will be. It's the law of attraction through physics. Make this a fun challenge for yourself, when
you are hit by adversity in your day, intentionally find at least one good thing in it all. Even if it is something like being grateful this bad thing
happen so you have the chance to practice this method.

5) Your heart is closed. Your heart is closed because the emotion of fear has moved in and taken strong roots. Fear weakens your
resilience by blocking your intuition and knocks your consciousness off centre. Fear is where negativity, anger, sadness, frustration and scarcity all grow from. Your thought patterns based from fear (pretty much most of them) are merely a habit. If you want to experience a
different outcome, choose a different habit, choose LOVE! not in the romantic sense, but in the alignment with the universal principle you
operate from love sense. Self awareness through inquiry and mindfulness is the fastest way to begin opening your heart.
By Yoga Studio Calgary 30 Oct, 2017
Meditation may help reduce the risk of heart disease according to a first-ever statement on the practice from the American Heart Association. The statement was based on a review of 57 previously published studies by a group of cardiovascular experts who were tasked with evaluating whether meditation  has any impact on heart disease . The team excluded studies involving meditation practiced in conjunction with activities such as yoga and tai chi because it is already established that physical activities like these have positive effects on cardiovascular health. The investigators reported that while the research they reviewed suggests that meditation might benefit the heart, the overall quality and size of available studies is modest and did not lead to conclusive findings. As things now stand “meditation should be considered as a potential lifestyle modification” to help boost cardiovascular health, the team concluded. But Glenn N. Levine, M.D. who led the review warned that meditation shouldn’t be used to replace proven measures, such as smoking cessation, blood pressure control and treatment of high cholesterol  levels. Larger trials that follow patients for a longer time could help determine just how beneficial meditation can be for heart health, Dr. Levine said.
By Yoga Studio Calgary 23 Oct, 2017
Yoga is a powerful antidote for the symptoms associated with anxiety and depression. With a regular practice of asana (poses) and pranayama (breathing) many of these symptoms can be alleviated and our lives can be brought back to a restorative place. Anxiety and Depression often leaves us unsettled, full of worry, fear and apprehension. The effects of these emotions have an impact on every part of our day.

So how does yoga help? In a nutshell, it heals our nervous system. The nervous system for those suffering from the effects of anxiety and depression is maxed out, fried up and struggling to find balance. These 2 forms of yoga have been proven time and again to have immense restorative benefits.
By Yoga Studio Calgary 16 Oct, 2017
What is an affirmation?.....{ af.firm.a.tion is a declaration, the action or process of affirming something}. Your brain doesn’t require that the information you are giving it to be completely accurate. It simply needs it to be certain in order to find the most optimal direction to reach out for the energy that will deliver you your desire, you vision, your goal. Affirmations centre your consciousness in order to increase intuition, intuition grants you confidence, when you advance confidently success will chase you.

1) All I need in life I already have.
2) I do not need to earn anything, I already am whole.
3) I live from love.
4) Only good comes to my life.
5) I am safe.
6) My potential is unlimited.
7) I look for and focus on the good in all things.
8) I don’t ever fail, I keep growing and learning.
9) I am enough...always.
10) I honour who I am...always.

These are thought patterns that will begin to replace out-dated, negative thought patterns each time you hear these words in your own head. These thought patterns will literally begin to create a positively wired brain, resilient of worries and stresses, anger or frustration.
More Posts
Share by: