Many psychologists believe that our body often holds on to the traumas that we have experienced in our life. Consciously and subconsciously this trauma affects us and manifests in our body language, posture, and expressions. In addition to pain, these past traumas stored by the body can often lead to digestion problems, immune system dysfunction, depression, anxiety, and even addiction.
A more somatic approach to healing trauma can help your body release the memories of these painful experiences and live a normal life. Here are 8 tips of somatic psychology that can help heal trauma and improve recovery.
Tip 1: Study Your Senses
Use meditation practices to become mindful and aware of the 5 senses of your body. You should ideally spend a minute each to observe what it is that you are seeing, hearing, smelling, tasting, and feeling. This sensory awakening will make you more aware of your surroundings and ground you in the present.
Tip 2: Track Your Sensations
You should pay more attention to what sensations you are feeling and in which part of the body. Be specific in describing the sensations like a feeling of tightening, racing, pulsing, throbbing, etc. You should also locate where you feel these sensations in your body.
Tip 3: Sensation Journaling
Some people use a journal to keep a track of the sensations that they feel. They track the feeling, the intensity of the feeling, and even the duration of it. This can help in understanding the different triggers and coming up with an action plan for them.
Tip 4: Identify Your Pacifiers
You may not always have a trauma specialist around when you face the disturbing sensation. So, identify your own sources that help you relax. This can be a particular type of music or a certain vision. Identify what relaxes you faster when faced with a trigger and keep it handy.
Tip 5: First Aid for Trauma
Just like a physical injury can be addressed with a first aid kit, the emotional distress or nervous hyperactivity can also be handled with a first aid kit. This kit is primarily a set of exercises that can help you work on the body parts affected by the sensations and calm down your nervous system at the very onset itself.
Tip 6: Breathing Exercises
Breathing comes so naturally to us that we often tend to forget to do it correctly. Studies have showed that we hardly use full of the capacity of our lungs because we don’t breathe deep enough. A breathing exercise will help you inhale and exhale in such a way that it calms down your nerves and relaxes you. A popular form of breathing exercise is Om yoga where you use even your gut muscles in the inhale and exhale action.
Tip 7: Imagine Your Own Safe Place
You can create your own vivid imagination of a place where you feel happy and relaxed. This vision can become a distraction when you are in throes of discomfort and relax your nervous system.