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Healing Beyond Words: 5 Ways Observed and Experiential Integration can help your healing journey!


Introduction


In the realm of therapy for psychological trauma, Observed and Experiential Integration (OEI) emerges as a promising approach. Unlike traditional talk therapy, OEI delves into the depths of trauma by incorporating eye movements to target specific areas of the brain. Let's In this post, I uncover what OEI entails and how it offers a pathway to healing.


Healing Beyond Words: 5 Ways Observed and Experiential Integration can help your healing journey!


Understanding OEI


In my practice, I've witnessed the profound impact of OEI in restoring individuals to their authentic selves post-trauma. This therapy isn't just about revisiting past wounds; OEI aims to restore individuals to their pre-trauma state by addressing the root causes of their distress. Rather than merely discussing past traumas, this therapy involves eye movements synchronized with focused attention. These movements are believed to access and release stored emotions, reducing the intensity of physical symptoms. 

 

Benefits of OEI


I've had the opportunity to seen first-hand how OEI isn't just about just managing symptoms; it's about reclaiming emotional equilibrium and rediscovering a sense of inner peace. By guiding my client's eyes in specific directions, I facilitate the release of stored emotions, leading to improved emotional regulation and a greater sense of calm. This equilibrium can translate to enhanced self-esteem, stronger relationships, and better performance in various aspects of life (Bradshaw, Cook, & McDonald et al., 2011).


Diving Deeper


Trauma is insidious, often lingering beneath the surface long after the traumatic event has passed. SightPsych Seminars Incorporated (2008) underscores the importance of confronting painful memories rather than letting them fester. Through the emotional and memory centers of the brain, traumas can be transformed from haunting present experiences to manageable recollections of the past. I emphasize the importance of confronting these painful memories head-on, rather than allowing them to remain in the shadows of our subconscious.


The Non-Verbal Approach


A unique aspect of OEI is its emphasis on non-verbal methods of healing. As a therapist, I recognize that words can only carry some of us so far. Rather than relying solely on conversation, OEI taps into emotions and body sensations, bypassing the rational mind where traumas often remain lodged. Though initially unsettling, this approach is vital for addressing deep-rooted traumas that are resistant to traditional problem-solving techniques.


Applications of OEI


In my practice, I've witnessed the remarkable versatility of OEI in addressing various mental health challenges across all age groups. From children grappling with the aftermath of abuse to older adults navigating the complexities of PTSD and addiction, OEI offers a holistic approach to healing that transcends traditional boundaries. OEI empowers individuals to overcome obstacles and thrive by encouraging self-exploration and facilitating emotional release. This is done by adjusting the body’s stress response to reduce feeling overwhelmed and emotionally stagnant (SightPsych Seminars Incorporated, 2008).


Conclusion


As a therapist committed to the art of healing, I've seen first-hand the transformative power of Observed and experiential Integration (OEI). It This approach represents a paradigm shift in trauma therapy, offering a transformative journey toward healing. Through targeted eye movements and nonverbal techniques, OEI addresses the core of psychological trauma, paving the way for profound emotional growth and resilience.


References

Bradshaw, R. A., Cook, A., & McDonald, M. J. (2011). Observed & experiential integration (OEI): Discovery and development of a new set of trauma therapy techniques. Journal of Psychotherapy Integration, 21(2), 104–-171. https://doi.org/10.1037/a0023966


SightPsych Seminars Incorporated. (2008). Toward iIntegration: One Eye at a Time – Client Handbook. Rick Bradshaw, PhD, RPsych & Audrey Cook, MPhil, RCC. ISBN 978-0- 9730330-1-4.

 



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