From Stuck to Chuckling – The Face of Transformation

Stuckness sucks. You can feel lost, confused, regretful, distracted to the point of frozenness, scared, angry, grief-stricken – basically, stuck in a yucky rut. When it appears to be more than a passing phase – stuckness can start to feel like it defines you. It begins to feel like home. This is common, but not ideal.

Let’s take anxiety as an example. These days, it’s said to be epidemic. Though the brain is usually working fine, it’s gotten stuck on overdrive with its alarm system. That alarm cycle reinforces itself, and a vicious cycle is born. Today’s digital dependence where downtime is constantly punctuated by blue light versus fading into the sunset, probably doesn’t help.

Along with the challenges of today’s changing landscape, good news also arises. One of these is discoveries in the neuroscience zone. Brain plasticity has been discovered. This lets us know that contrary to prior thought, big change and new learning is possible in the brain after young adulthood. For self-growth and healing areas, this reality is creating new options.

Last summer I attended a training in a technique called Rapid Resolution Therapy, or RRT. Likened to the next generation of trauma offerings like EMDR*, RRT also uses different sides of the brain, releasing memories and beliefs that no longer serve. Many healing techniques do this – I trained as a somatic psychotherapist long before that was common. Yet the combination of new science, with updated ideas on how this can be applied, is revolutionizing work with trauma, and just regular old stuckness.

How does this translate to human experience? First, it helps better understand and explain why you can get stuck. Then there are clearer paths to the unsticking. Second, you can use the power of the “deeper” brain or subconscious, to focus on the healing or the ideal goal, versus digging in deeper with the stuckness. Focusing on the preferred goal is not a new concept. But how to clear that stuck focus for good hasn’t been so easy.

RRT cuts through a lot of needless circling and can clear the old ruts. And, it’s creative and fun to do. That’s exciting! Yes, the logical side of the brain still is a player. But new ways to include the deeper brain allows the nonverbal intelligence and inner wisdom to take its powerful place and help guide the way. All in all, big change feels faster, more enduring and more fun to enable.

Here is a simple view of it. Client is freaked out to leave the dog for first time. Kennel refuses doggie. Logical brain’s stressful thoughts add to the mess. Unrealistic catastrophe fears are unveiled. Logical brain has its creativity too it turns out (“dog will end up in a wood chipper” !?!) and humor helps. Realistic thoughts replace fearful thoughts – this is a big deal to be separated for the first time.

Now it’s time to harness deeper brain ideas. It paints a picture of a large, open field for the dog to run around in. The image aids relaxation, and release of worries. New ideas are more possible. Client goes home to receive a message on her machine that a friend will take her dog, and has a lovely fenced yard.

Does the relaxation invite the solution or was that a total coincidence? Well, anxious and stuck mind can certainly miss opportunities, and wreck quality of life. It interferes with the truth of what you’re meant to do and be. As evolution demands all hands on deck, it’s nice to have the science support new practices that help people more quickly dispel challenges, and live more true to their path.

Good to know that with all of today’s crosscurrents and difficulties, positive news is keeping pace.

What before and after faces have you seen in past transformations? comment below.

*Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing

About Denise Barnes

Licensed Therapist, Life Coach and Spiritual Counselor, Denise has an office in Boulder CO and is a certified Telehealth provider.
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