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What is Brainspotting?

​Brainspotting is a somatic, brain-based therapeutic modality that locates points in our visual field, helping to access unprocessed trauma in the subcortical regions of the brain. These are non-thinking regions of the brain where trauma and other emotional stressors are held. 

Who is it for?

Brainspotting can be effective for a wide variety of emotional and somatic concerns. It is particularly effective in helping to identify and heal underlying trauma that contributes to anxiety, depression, C-PTSD & PTSD, dissociation and other adaptations to traumatic life experiences. Brainspotting can also be used with performance (athletic, artistic, etc.) and creativity enhancements. 

Close Up on Eyes
Toy Brain

What can I expect during a Brainspotting session?

During a session, I will help you locate a point in your visual field where you feel the most activation regarding a situation you want to process. This is done with the help of a pointer that acts as a visual aid in where to keep your focused gaze. I will then invite you to maintain focus on the Brainspot and allow your subcortical, non-thinking brain to scan itself and to process and discharge stuck or pent-up energy in your nervous system. 

Processing and discharging of stuck or pent-up energy in the nervous system can look and feel many different ways. Some common experiences include: waves of emotion, waves of somatic sensations and movement like trembling or shaking, and recalling certain memories or thoughts associated with the stressful or traumatic situation. These experiences can be strong or they can be very gentle and subtle... almost mundane!

Bilateral Stimulation

Brainspotting makes use of bilateral stimulation through something called Bio-lateral Sounds.

This is totally optional, though I highly recommend trying it as an additional tool for integration and regulation during your Brainspotting sessions.

You will need access to headphones in order to make the back and forth effect of the music work. 

How many sessions will I need?

This will largely depend on the complexity of the issue(s) you're wanting to explore. The more simple the issue, the fewer sessions generally required to sense a shift. The more complex and multilayered the issue, the more time we need to sort through all aspects of your experience. Most folks find that at least four to six Brainspotting sessions are a good number to start noticing shifts in your experience. From there, you can decide whether you'd like to continue exploring the issue with Brainspotting or whether you'd like to try a different approach. Like all therapy, the approach needs to be personalized to your needs. If you'd like to learn more about whether Brainspotting might make sense for you, please feel free to reach out for a free 20-minute consultation here

Check out the videos at the bottom of this page for more info. 

Together at the Top

What is the Brainspotting therapist's role?

As the Brainspotting therapist, I strive to embody secure attachment: I gently encourage you to lean into what emerges, to stay curious and to trust the wisdom and resilience inherent in your brain/body. You will notice that I speak a lot less during our session than you might be used to. This is intentional and it is done to allow your subcortical brain (where trauma is held) the time and space it needs to process without getting pulled into neocortical functions like thinking, problem-solving and meaning-making. As always, I will be there to guide, encourage and support you when or if you need me at any point during the process. We will end sessions by debriefing and noticing any shifts in activation you feel in your body as a way to help your whole brain integrate and make sense of your experience. 

Book a free 20-minute consultation

Image by Ivana Cajina

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Virtual therapy in British Columbia


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