Brainspotting is a valuable, brain-based tool that can be used to unleash your creativity and expand your natural talents. Any artist or innovator can benefit from brainspotting as it can be used to access your inner genius that is buried deep within your brain. Whether your craft is acting, singing, dancing, composing, writing, painting, drawing, sculpting or any other art form, brainspotting can help you overcome blocks and fine tune your skills.
Performance blocks are often the result of traumas or wounds that can be both mental and physical. These upsetting experiences become stacked together and intertwined and the memories of these wounds are stored in both the mind and the body. But once you have processed your trauma, your creativity is unblocked and you can achieve at even higher levels than you previously thought possible.
There is a misnomer among artists that if they were to heal and let go of their past traumas and difficult experiences they will lose their creativity. This is simply not true. Trauma inhibits creativity and constrain inventiveness. For many artists, it is through their pain that they first find inspiration to create. Some artists begin their creative journey with traumas and mental wounds that they used as a basis to create. But ultimately your creativity and ingenuity will be dulled if you don’t learn to let go of upsetting experiences. Your creative process will be limited to a narrow capacity if all you do is access past pain and wounds to inspire your art.
When you are healed, you aren’t just motivated by your past misery and distress. You have access to the wider spectrum of creativity – your imagination and inventiveness is now open and able to flourish.
Brainspotting is a revolutionary therapeutic tool that was developed in 2003 by David Grand, PhD. Trained therapists use brainspotting to help their clients quickly and effectively process trauma and upsetting experiences. Mental and physical pain is stored in a person’s brain and body. Grand discovered that when your eyes are focused on a particular point, internal hurtful memories may be triggered.
Brainspotting identifies the eye positions that activate a “spot” in your brain where the pain of a trauma or upsetting experience is stored. These brainspots act as performance blocks and can obstruct a person from achieving higher goals. A therapist uses the brainspotting technique to help the person process the trauma that is stored there. Once that pain is released, barriers to higher performance are also torn down.
Brainspotting allows a person to use their own intuitive process in healing from trauma. As Grand has said, “There is no healing without creativity and there is no creativity without healing.” This means that as an artist heals from upsetting experiences and trauma, he or she also becomes more open to inputs and the person’s creative vision is deepened.
Oftentimes artists and other high achievers are plagued with feelings of never being good enough. Artists tend to be sensitive in nature and may see the world around them differently than others. They may be chastised for not conforming the way others believe they should. This sets many artists up for failure as they constantly push themselves to do better, but deep in their minds they keep repeating a negative mantra that they aren’t good enough, smart enough or talented enough to succeed. This can be a major stumbling block to success.
In addition to mental blocks, artists may also suffer physical injuries incurred during their work. Dancers by be injured during grueling practices or performances. Musicians, sculptors, graphic artists and others may suffer from repetitive motion or carpal tunnel injuries. Actors sometimes put themselves in precarious situations or may be hurt during rehearsals or performances.
As a person heals and processes these negative experiences, she is able to deepen her connection to her creativity and craft.
Once traumas have been released, a creative person is positioned to unleash their full potential. Brainspotsting can be used as a way of connecting to creative areas of our brains. Brainspots don’t just hold difficult experiences, they are also ways of accessing and fine tuning our inner creative genius. Singers, dancers, writers, painters all have different creative brainspots. And a person who is multitalented – as many artists are—can access different brainspots to connect with those different abilities and talents.
For instance, an actor could use brainspotting to gain deeper understanding and perspective on a character they are portraying. This therapeutic technique could also be used to help an artist increase vocal resonance or emotionally connect with their work on a deeper level. And an artist may be able to identify brainspots that are blocking their creativity --areas that hold them back -- and then process and release those blocks.
Brainspotting is a great fit for creative people and innovators as the therapy itself uses creative components that relies on a person’s own intuitive healing process. A therapist guides their clients through the process of identifying brainspots but once a person is familiar with how it works, they can use brainspotting on their own to tap into their creativeness and heighten their natural talents.
Brainspotting is being shown to be the most effective tool for treatment for trauma. The most recent documentation is the “Report of Findings from the Community Survey, September 2016, Newton-Sandy Hook Community Foundation, Inc.
BESPN 30 for 30 Series “Fields of Fear”: David Grand's Brainspotting Sports Work with Mackey Sasser was featured in the ESPN's 30 for 30 documentary series by renowned documentarian Alex Gibney.
You can find a trained Brainspotting psychotherapist at www.brainspotting.pro.
Tom Rohrer, PhD, LMFT, based in Walnut Creek, CA since 1979, is a licensed psychotherapist (MFC20325), and a Performance Consultant, specializing in sports psychology, certified in Brainspotting and he is trauma informed.