Help! My brain keeps hijacking my body.

One of the biggest casualties of trauma is the sense of self.

When you come to see me, we can work through healing the trauma, but we must also work on helping you to restore a sense of who you are.

There are a number of body centred exercises that I can teach you that will help you regulate what you are feeling inside and how you are responding to those feelings. These exercises will also help restore and repair the connections between your mind and body that are disrupted in trauma.

One of the most effective ways to achieve this is through breathing exercises. Mindfulness is on of the most effective of these ways and I will teach you this as part of your therapy. Mindfulness combines breathing, awareness and meditation.

The part of the brain that gives you a sense of self awareness is sometimes referred to as the “Mohawk of Self Awareness”. It is a good illustration of where those parts of the brain are. I will mention the names of those parts because often you will hear them referred to, and it is nice to have some idea where they are.

Starting from the front of the brain, there is the orbital prefrontal cortex, the medial prefrontal cortex, the anterior cingulate, the posterior cingulate and the insula. Now I have mentioned them you can forget them if you like.

The main point with these brain areas is that these areas of the brain are shown to have less activity in traumatised people. This is actually because a traumatised person’s brain is constantly on alert and these parts of the brain go offline when the defensive parts of the brain are on high alert.

You may have heard the term hyperarousal. That is what happens when the defensive parts of the brain are on high alert.

One of the ways your brain protects itself from the busyness in the brain of hyperarousal is to block the connection between your body and your brain. This reduces the messages your body sends your brain. Those messages would overload your brain if they were allowed through. The trouble with that is you are then disconnected from your feelings, which are felt in your body. If you don’t know what you are feeling, it is hard to respond well to things that happen.

Another casualty of the blocking of the body sensations by the brain is that you cannot engage in self reflection and experience and understand all the feelings you are experiencing. The only ones that will get through will be those associated with the trauma.

Those feelings will send your brain into high alert without you being aware of it. It reacts where you would prefer to have some control and respond.

Breathing exercises, and mindfulness in particular, is a very important way of reconnecting your body and brain and allowing you to be aware of your feelings and respond to them.

The stronger the connection between the body and brain, the lower your reactivity is to what is happening in the world around you.

Wouldn’t it be great to feel in control of your brain again?

If you would like to talk to me about how I can help you with healing from your trauma, please contact me on 0409396608 or

If you would like to learn more, I write a regular newsletter with interesting information, tips, information on courses, and the occasional freebie. At the moment I have a free mindfulness meditation for anyone who signs up to my newsletter. This meditation offers a way to safely explore your feelings and learn to be okay with them. If you would like to subscribe please click on the link here:

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