May is Mental Health Month, a time to reflect on ways that we can be the best versions of ourselves at all levels. Peak performance means being aware of the thoughts and feelings that drive our behaviors at both a conscious and subconscious level.
I have written in the past about limiting beliefs (or thought patterns that negatively affect our feelings and behaviors); if you missed it, please check out the post here.
This month I signed up for a training related to mental health that I love (I appreciate this training so much that I’m repeating it!). I also value this training because it focuses on a modality that goes after the subconscious level of our thinking, and some say that the subconscious is actually 97% of the brain’s activity, with only 3% being at a conscious level.
That modality is called Brainspotting. The motto for the modality is “where you look affects how you feel”.
Dr. David Grand (the founder of this modality) believes this to be true for both positive and negative emotions. (Read more about Brainpotting in a previous post, and also see the Brainspotting main website).
There’s enough research for brain science to suggest that a brainspot connects your eye gaze position to neurological locations or networks in your brain. When it comes to any issue that you want to address (procrastination, independence, confidence, connectivity, all issues that I’ve addressed in my work with clients using brainspotting), the brainspot connects to unprocessed beliefs (often limiting beliefs) that exist at a deeper level below our cognitive or thinking brain.
Activating the spot through a fixed eye gaze allows us to have this information surface.
This weekend I saw person after person (including myself) come to “ah ha” moments that came from within themselves as they processed an issue through Brainspotting (and found that the answer, not surprisingly, lay within).
Cool, huh? So how does Brainspotting work?
First, information comes to us through body sensations as we apply focused mindfulness to the fixed eye gazing spot. Memories may come up visually as well as smells and sounds. Or we may just have a bodily, or visceral, experience.
Remaining fixed on the spot for several minutes (to hours, depending on the approach of the Brainspotting practitioner) allows these subconscious “knowings” to emerge. If negative knowings come up, they are processed and released in a fashion that I like to look at as: “what is coming is going”.
So if you find tears coming down your face or feel twitches or shakes, that is your body’s way of getting rid of “the gunk” that is messing up the system. It’s like eradicating those crumbs that we’ve swept under the rug, or just taking out the trash.
So those “negative” reactions could be the case if your Brainspotting session is more about “mental clutter clearing” as opposed to finding that performance expansion spot that makes you feel like a million bucks.
Both experiences are extremely valuable and helpful to your mental state and performance level.
Please feel free to post any comments or questions you have about Brainspotting. Be well during this Mental Wellness Month of May (and beyond).