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After a near-death experience, Peter Bedard was faced with the greatest challenge of all: Living a life in severe physical, emotional, and spiritual pain. The former dancer soon discovered that the anger and frustration he felt because of his injuries were not only keeping him in pain, but were waiting to teach him the greatest gifts of his life.
Now, a celebrated author and healer, he helps thousands of people globally to live a life of full potential while integrating the lessons of pain into balanced living. Peter is the owner of ConvergenceHealingTeas.com and Peter's book, Convergence Healing: Healing Pain with Energetic Love, is in bookstores now! His newest book, "When Happiness is Work, A 30 Day Guide to Creating a Life of Joy and Healing Depression" is taking pre-orders NOW prior to publication!
The experience of trauma is one of too much too fast. Something happens in our lives that creates an experience of overwhelm and emotions that were meant to be felt and flow right through us somehow get stuck. From personal experience, trauma is when a memory, and the physical feelings around that memory, is still happening. It’s the physical experience of loss, pain, suffering, overwhelm, fear, etc. that is trapped inside of us. It’s the 95 year old man who is still angry at something that happened when he was 5 years old or your best friend who still gets flushed and furious when reminded of a break-up that happened a decade ago. Trauma is a memory that hasn’t found its place in the history of your life story. In other words, it is an experience that happened in the past that no matter how long ago it happened it is still happening within you now. We feel that experience not as a memory but as if it was currently occurring in this moment and we feel it with every sense of our being.
When we hold onto trauma we often invent very creative and even subconscious methods for coping with this experience. It’s as if we learn to manage and push away the trauma but it’s always hanging around in the background. We learn to ignore it and act as if it isn’t there so It sits and waits for that moment when someone pushes a “button” within us and that button triggers a reaction that is often uncontrollable and sometimes even a surprise to ourselves. It just waits seemingly dormant within for an opportunity to explode out of us and be released. Even then, as it rips through us, it just never quite lessens and at times it may even build up strength.
Here are some easy things to do to lessen the strength of that memory and stop managing the trauma so that it can finally be released:
Make it your friend – When you can step back and redefine your relationship with the ghost of trauma past you actually take an important step towards reducing the power of the trauma. You can start doing this by treating the “bad memory” as a friend that has been wounded. Instead of burying the pain in denial or fear practice loving compassion towards the pain itself. We are always talking to ourselves so why not talk to this old memory in a way that is loving and kind?
Understand how it exists within you –Your brain is recording every second of the event using all your senses (color, temperature, texture, sound, smell, taste). Become aware of how you recorded that moment and ask yourself the question, “What is the color, sound, temperature, texture, taste, and even smell of that moment?” This is how the experience has been living inside of you.
Teach it something new – Now that you understand how your brain recorded that moment in time, see if you can remember the experience with a contrary color, temperature, etc. Replace the descriptive experience with a contrary one. If the trauma was rough, bring in a sense of smooth as you practice remembering it again. If it was dark and heavy, bring in a sense of a brilliant color and the lightness of a feather and watch the old understanding start to dissolve away.
Working in this way allows your brain to understand the moment as a true memory and no longer as an experience that is currently happening. Practice this over and over again until the original experience no longer has a grip on you. Eventually, you will be able to look back at even the darkest moments of your past and literally see them differently.