EDMR Therapy: Get over the past and overcome your fears
EMDR Therapy is powerful. It helps you heal and build the life that matters to you if:
- You have been knocked sideways by a traumatic event.
- You think, “I’m a bad person”, trapped by anxiety or depression, and you’re too scared to let other people too close. You don’t know why you feel this way, or it feels like nothing helps – not even CBT.
- You’re generally OK, but you can’t seem to perform at work or play in the way you believe you could.
Your brain is ‘stuck.’
All of these experiences have something in common.
How you think, feel and act today is influenced by how your brain processes information.
When you’ve been through something difficult or are scared about what might happen in the future, your brain gets overwhelmed. Those memories and fears get ‘stuck’.
Sometimes you can see that your problems started after a particularly traumatic incident. You might also dig into your past or imagination and find repeated smaller experiences of shame, fear, or loss. These experiences add up and influence the way you see the world.
When you get a cut on your body, it usually heals itself. But, if the wound gets infected, you need to clean it so it can heal.
What is EMDR Therapy?
We offer both weekly EMDR appointments and also EMDR Intensives
Our therapists know from experience and research that EMDR can be life-changing and healing. It allows you to feel safe once again and find self-acceptance. You learn to form more meaningful relationships and live a fun and fulfilling future.
How does EMDR work?
The first step is for you and your therapist to get to know each other properly to feel safe and supported. Together, you will make a plan and build up your coping skills to feel ready. The length of time this part takes varies depending on what you need, and we have an extensive toolkit of advanced ways to help.
When you are ready to begin processing, we keep you grounded in the present moment whilst also bringing elements of your memories/imagined future scenarios and applying “bilateral stimulation”. Bilateral stimulation means rapidly activating alternate sides of the brain, e.g. using side-to-side eye movements or tapping.
We focus on your memories when you want to heal from your past. If you’re going to overcome fears for your future or improve your performance, we focus on your imagination.
The process moves information down your brain pathways, from where it got stuck to where all your other non-distressing memories and imaginations are stored – like how you remember brushing your teeth this morning. It turns it from an upsetting memory into one that feels like it’s in the past and no longer bothers you.
It also helps your mind connect the memory/fear to other bits of helpful information stored elsewhere in the brain so that you start to see things differently. For example, you might begin to see that you are safe now.
This method might seem unusual when you first hear about it, but outstanding science shows how it supercharges brain processing. It’s a little like how you process things during REM (rapid eye movement) sleep and wake up feeling better.
You might feel strong emotions, but it is manageable. Most people find it profoundly cathartic and a very positive experience.
EMDR is not hypnosis. You also do not necessarily need to tell your therapist details about the events.
Can EMDR help me?
Our experience shows that EMDR is a powerful way of making sense of past experiences so that they become less distressing and overwhelming. It can free you up to look towards your future and build a more full and enriching life.
The research and our experience show that EMDR can help you find relief from a wide range of issues and build a future that excites you and feels profoundly meaningful. What does this mean to you?
- If you want to heal from trauma or PTSD (e.g. car accident, assault, bullying, or grief), EMDR can help you get back to your old self.
- Suppose you’ve experienced difficult longer-term experiences such as critical parents, child abuse, domestic violence, or complex PTSD. In that case, EMDR can help you make sense of your story and feel empowered to give yourself a better future.
- If you struggle with anxiety, depression, OCD, panic attacks, phobias, low self-esteem, or relationship difficulties, EMDR can help you understand how your brain is getting stuck and give you the needed shift. If you generally feel OK but cannot perform at your best, EMDR can help remove any mental blocks and give you a turbo boost.
- If you generally feel OK but cannot perform at your best, EMDR can help remove any mental blocks and give you a turbo boost.
Openforwards have extensive expertise in delivering high-quality EMDR.
We can support you with complex issues, attachment-focused EMDR (working on difficulties stemming from not feeling fully loved or supported throughout your childhood), and pre-verbal memories (from experiences as a baby that you cannot explicitly remember).
We have a choice of qualified, skilful therapists. Find the person you’d like to work with below, or let us know when you’re available.
Hi, I’m Farishta
emdr & cbt therapist, organisational psychologist