When you have an experience that causes a fight or flight, freeze or fawn response, whether someone cuts you off in traffic or something horrific has happened to you in the past, your body reacts before your brain in an effort to keep you safe.
Ideally, after the experience, your brain would have time to process the experience, logically understand what happened, and then file it in your memory for future reference. Your eyes are connected to the part of your brain that gives access to these memories or traumas. The Brainspotting (BSP) technique uses your field of vision to access those traumatic memories that never had a chance to process.
During a brainspotting appointment, your brain is given the time and space it needs to process and release the fight or flight response so that you can say good-bye to the debilitating triggers and anxiety!
Brainspotting is primarily used in trauma therapy and for the treatment of PTSD. It has also been shown to assist in injury recovery and help treat physical illness, inattention, stress, and low motivation!
I was in therapy after a very traumatic time in my life. For several years, I felt trapped in a relationship that was psychologically traumatizing.
When I finally left, I was met with symptoms of PTSD that I never even realized existed. I had physical pain in my stomach, a racing heart, chest pain, and mental fog. All of these symptoms happened many times a day, and I felt triggered by everything. My focus was distracted at work to the point that, for most of the day, I was subject to intense emotional flashbacks and constant worry about what might happen next.
My therapist started with EMDR (a type of therapy), which worked really well for the flashbacks, helping me rewire the traumatic memories, but the painful physical symptoms of anxiety did not go away.
Finally, she tried Brainspotting. After only 1 session, the physical anxiety symptoms completely disappeared!
I am now a Brainspotting Practitioner* because I want to give others the freedom and peace that I have experienced through Brainspotting. It truly helped me to Heal for Real!
*I am not a licensed therapist. My certification is in Phase I and II Brainspotting and does NOT require a license beyond those certifications to practice. Since this is so new, a FAQ section has been posted below. Feel free to take a peek! Book your call today to see if this is right for you.
“Ok, I’m officially impressed! After a decade plus of working in the health, fitness and coaching industry I’m a tough cookie to crack but I couldn’t believe all Brandi was able to help me bring up and work through in just one brain spotting session! It was so helpful being able to peel back the layers of years of negative beliefs I didn’t even realize were packed in there! You can tell Brandi’s heart to help support and love, yet professionalism in her sessions which truly put you at ease to sit back and enjoy the ride!”
- Brea E., Mrs. United States 2021
Question & Answer
Are you a licensed therapist?
I am not a licensed mental health professional, although I do work under the consultation of one. Any time there is a case that seems severe or has a more complicated trauma than I feel prepared to handle, I consult and sometimes refer to her for treatment. My Brainspotting Training gives me the legal opportunity to specifically help others who deal with the anxiety following traumatic experiences so that you can re-enter your functional life with confidence and inner-peace. It's a beautiful tool for my coaching clients and I'm excited to be able to offer this to all of you who can benefit from it!
Where did you get your training?
I was trained in Brainspotting Phase I and Phase II through the Pacific Trauma Center in California. Lisa and Kelly Larson are both licensed professionals and work directly under Dr David Grand, who discovered this method. I have documentation proving my training and certifications I can provide to validate it. In the documents that go with my training it states exactly how "un-licensed" professionals are to use Brainspotting in their practice and I stay in compliance with those guidelines.
How exactly does Brainspotting work?
Brainspotting is a derivative of EMDR, which incorporates your eye movement and positioning to access memories and trauma that can stay locked in the "ON" position in your brain and body. Using that, paired with somatic experiencing, Brainspotting is able to help your body and mind reconnect. This evens out your nervous system, letting you experience a more calm, healed state of being, even when new triggers arise. See the YouTube video above for a more in-depth description!
How does a Brainspotting appointment look?
Most of the Brainspotting appointments I do are through video, on Zoom. I love doing them in person, but I know that it is not always possible. They usually last a full 60 minutes with a 10 minute intro to discuss what we are working on and a 5 minute debriefing at the end. The best scenario is for you to have your computer eye-level, in a quiet room with no distractions, in a comfortable environment that is not triggering. Having headphones is helpful to listen to bilateral music programs during the appointment, but it is not required. The first one always feels a little awkward! I always remind people, there is no "wrong way" to do this! We let your brain take the reins and remain open and curious!