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  • Writer's pictureDiane Mesnier

The embodiment of trauma

Trauma happens to most of us at some point in our life. These experiences leave traces on our mind and body. In addition, the stress caused by a traumatic event is often passed on to our partners and children. For these reasons, each trauma should be acknowledged, talked through and dealt with in the best possible way.

When we go through any kind of emotions, either positive or negative, we experience it with our entire body. And when our experiences are too overwhelming, scary, stressful or unsafe, our body tries to protect us so that we do not get hurt again. Indeed, experiencing traumatic stress literally rearranges our brain’s wiring and particularly the areas dedicated to control, engagement, pleasure and trust. This is basic survival and we are wired for it.

But in the long run, this protection can turn into a thick shield and create a wall between ourself and others. This happens when the adversity we experienced was too intense and/or lasted for an extended period of time and we become disconnected from our body and its inner wisdom.

Our unresolved traumas can give us a distorted view of the present and prevent us from feeling safe in order to protect us from the eventuality of another negative experience. That’s when we start pushing good things and people away. We do so because our brain believes that those traumatic events are still happening to us and is therefore not allowing us to live in the present and in accordance with the current reality. It is literally like being stuck in the past.

This why our experiences of psychological traumas can also have a huge impact on our relationship with our body.

In order to fully engage with our lives, it is important to safely re-connect with our body after a trauma. We must give our body and mind the space to process the traumatic event and to give it a place in our personal life’s story.

Even though, drugs prescription is in some cases necessary, there are other alternatives to re-wire the brain. Such technics include speech therapy and yoga. Combining the two can have wonderful results as speech therapy allows the mind to process the traumatic event while yoga helps the body to digest what it went through and brings it back in the present. And since yoga is essentially a way to connect mind and body through the breath, our focus is on the here and now, not in the past.

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