For Veterans

Veterans & First Responder Healing Approach

Combat-related stress or post-traumatic stress (PTS) can manifest for a myriad of reasons. You may have been a victim of (physical, emotional, mental or verbal abuse) or have been victimized. You may have been a perpetrator or been perpetrated (bullied, harassed, scapegoated or gaslighted). Even just the feeling of being a victim or victimized, perpetrated or perpetrated others can cause PTS. Additionally, PTS can manifest through bearing witness, or participation in atrocities, horrific events, or forced to endure a disaster/ crisis, or an auto, bus, train or plane accident.

PTS Can Be Healed

PTS is not a psychological disorder per say unless,
A prior mental health diagnosis was established prior to the traumatic event(s).
The other exclusion, which can also be the case, is that an individual may have had a prior mental health issue that was never diagnosed before they experienced the traumatic event(s).

Either way PTS is not a lifelong issue! That is a fallacy and an untruth. PTS can be healed if the following stipulations are present.

An individual truly wants to heal and get better.
An individual believes in their heart they can get better.
An individual is willing to be proactive, to listen and follow suggestions from a therapist or healer with experience in combat-related stress and PTS.

An individual is willing to look under the veil of what is conscious and address underlying issues and uncomfortable feelings to move through and heal.

The individual’s environment, living conditions, and personal circumstances support healing.
If all these conditions are met, then healing from PTS in a very short amount of time, is not only conceivable, but highly achievable. A positive benefit and bi product of healing from PTS is that luckily you cannot go back to who you were. You will become a better, stronger, and more compassionate you; an improved, upgraded and more mature version of yourself.

My Healing: Hostage in a Foreign Country

How can I make such a bold statement that we can heal from PTS? From my own personal experience of walking through the swampland of the soul to heal from post-traumatic stress. I was a hostage in a foreign country for 6-weeks and barely escaped with my life. Shortly after my return to the states I too began suffering from all the symptoms of PTS; depression, hyper-vigilance, isolation, anger issues, suicide ideation, indecisiveness, and the inability to trust myself and others.

I understand what it feels like to not know if you will live or die, 24/7, from day-to-day, for weeks on end. I understand the inner conflict of feeling like you are going crazy, as your life spins out of control. I understand feeling lost with no conception of how to find the old me and the underlying feelings of both helplessness and hopelessness.

Everyone will experience some form of wounding, betrayal or soul injury in their lifetime. Nobody gets through this life without feeling the gut-wrenching pain of loss or hurt, and most will experience the feeling of being stuck, or lost at some point in their life. Unfortunately, most will also deny the fact they wherever wounded. They do so out of fear. The fear of the fear of actually feeling the depths of sadness and, or grief. It takes courage to choose to heal. However, the payoff is immeasurable. The sense of freedom and fearlessness is priceless.

What is PTS

PTS or traumatic stress injury is a physiological and biological miscalibration in the way the brain and body communicate. Body and mind are intimately interconnected. One cannot have a physiological issue without a psychological consequence and vice versa.

PTS occurs when someone witnesses, inflicts or endures an experience that is unfathomable. In essence PTS is a normal human response to a horrific event or series of events. The aftermath of stress induced trauma is a miscalibration in the way the brain and the body process information. Both the brain and body are attempting to reconcile, to find homeostasis. During and after a traumatic event or series of events the brain and body become completely overwhelmed from excessive stress and fear.

The result is that the brain and body become mis-calibrated. There is a fundamental shift in the way the brain and the body function as a system and communicate with each other. In short PTS is a misalignment or imbalance. To protect us from further harm the brain disconnects, disassociates or numbs our emotions. If you have experienced this degree of disconnect it is vital you muster up the courage to ask for help and guidance. This is not the time to play tough guy!

My Holistic PTS Approach

First and foremost, as a Somatic Depth-oriented, EMDR & NeuroAffective Touch Therapist and soul healer, my role is to be present to what psyche wants and needs to voice. As an intuitive, empath and energy healer I observe, listen, and guide clients through the ‘swampland of the soul’. A key premise in the healing of psyche is to be open and receptive to whatever psyche wants to attend to, voice or reveal. The therapeutic process must be flexible, spontaneous, intuitive and flow like a windy river down a ravine.

This holistic approach is highly targeted through deep inquiry into the psyche of clients. My role is to assist clients to become more aware of the unconscious processes playing out under the veil of their conscious reality. We must get present to what is out of alignment. Once psyche reveals the real issues and releases them into conscious awareness they can be verbalized, processed and integrated so they can dissipate.

The prevailing misconception is the therapeutic and healing process should take months or even years. This is another fallacy. As a conception it is far too general, and for the most part a false premise. Ancient wisdom from our forbearers, wise elders, medicine men, merged with modern science and neurobiological approaches have displayed efficacy in healing PTS related issues over the centuries and ages. Healing and long-term behavioral change can be facilitated in a few sessions, weeks or months at the most.
 
Somatic depth and experiential therapeutic approaches are highly progressive and expedient with focus targeted on the origin or root causes of trauma. Discovery and discussion of the origin, or root causes of guilt, shame, moral injury, survivor guilt and developmental childhood trauma address unhealed wounds so they can be resolved. The result is that adverse symptomatology’s gradually diminish organically and naturally all on their own. This is how we move through old stories, limiting belief patterns, adverse feelings and trauma-related issues.

I empower clients to become the human they always wanted to be, the human they felt they always could become, but just couldn’t get out of their own way long enough to allow psyche to unveil the truth.  My role is to help clients become comfortable with that, which in the past was too uncomfortable to be with. My approach allows clients to embody certain simple beliefs such as; they are enough, they are okay as they are, they deserve love, and they are worthy of connection and happiness.  Dreams are meant to come true if we are open and willing to explore a different path. The only price for admission is the courage to pursue truth and authenticity. 

Somatic Depth-Oriented Soul Healing

Re-connection with our body (soma), our unconscious self, is the only path to this truth. If we never know our truth, how can we possibly know who we are, what we want, or how to find lasting happiness and contentedness?  I provide the safety, guidance, understanding, empathy and compassion for this process to unfold organically.  Because body and mind are intimately intertwined both psychological and physiological transformation occur simultaneously. 

Connection with the language of psyche, “the wisdom of the body” is the gateway that bridges the gap between the (ego-based) conscious and the (soul-based) unconscious self.  Embodied connection allows the body and mind to work together as equal partners for a common purpose, be it physical, emotional, mental or spiritual. The body and brain inherently know how to heal all on their own given the right circumstances, situation and environment.

Most of our adverse behavioral issues, limiting belief patterns, projections, communication challenges and fears are illusions. They are the internal mechanisms that hold us back, housed deep within our unconscious psyche and soul.   Our ego (conscious self) primary job is to protect our identity.  The ego will go to great lengths to accomplish this task. This includes lying to us over a hundred times per day, through rationalization, justification, projection, denial and disassociation.  Psyche, soma and soul make up the (unconscious self) and they NEVER LIE!

The culprit resides deep within our psyche, surfacing sparingly in those quiet moments when we are alone and in self-reflection. The irony is that we rarely spend time in self-reflection these days, primarily because of our fear of the unknown. More specifically we fear what may bubble-up, rise to the surface, and remind us of all our character defects, behavioral dysfunctions, communication fears, insecurities, shame and unresolved issues. 

Way too often we prefer to live in the illusion that busyness and productivity are the path to fulfillment.  We fill our time with every distraction imaginable, meaningful or not; anything to avoid looking inside ourselves for truth and resolve.  Our feelings toward self are then manifested through our embodied behavioral patterns, which control how we think, feel and act.

Our level of honest self-understanding reflects our degree of self-care, which in turn determines our level of self-respect, self-worth. This either supports or sabotages our efforts to feel good about ourselves and our life.  We allow past life experiences to dictate our future, thus, to determine our level of disconnect and/ or happiness. More to the truth is that we must feel like we deserve to be happy. “You cannot think yourself into right action, you have to act yourself into right thinking”. If we do not feel good about our self, we will not feel good in the body we live in every day. We will NEVER feel safe……..ever!  

Conclusion

Our thoughts and feelings concerning self are reflected in all our relationships, and in our way of being in the world.  Our level of self-care is a direct reflection of our sense of self-worth, self-respect and self-esteem. Subsequently, it is these inner feelings about self that have a direct influence on our success and happiness in life. We are only puppets on a string when it comes to our thoughts and emotions, while psyche is the puppet master.  Self-exploration and deep inquiry are integral components of the healing process and individuating to feel whole and complete. Which do you choose?

The Healing Power of Somatic Body Psychology

Heal the Body, Heal the Soul. The study of Somatic Experiencing was first developed through the observation of animals in the wild. Despite frequently facing life threatening situations, they are able to return quickly to their normal lives. What makes humans so much more susceptible to the devastating effects of trauma?

Join the mailing list and receive Michael's new ebook to help you heal your spirit.