How does sleep relate to depression? I take the edge off of my depression?
Please note, if you are on any medication for depression, please stay on it. If you come in for a session, we can re-assess the situation after you experience the results of the session. If we determine that you don't require these drugs it will take you at least 6 weeks to wean off these drugs with a doctor's supervision.
Depression in the NLP world is one of two things: 1.) Either you are stuck in a review cycle; As in, you hear, see, smell, or taste something and it triggers a painful emotional memory and then you re-review internally what was heard, seen, smelled, or tasted and then review what you made it mean and the painful emotional feeling. By repeating this cycle over and over again you build a pain profile so the emotional pain gets larger and feels worse over time. Or, 2.) the emotions are so big that they bleed all over to every part of your life.
Which every you are experiencing, I recommend people start by assuming the first use the suggestion here to experiment with what works uniquely for you. Which ever you are suffering from, this suggestion will help both situations. Note: not all depression is the same ie: Seasonal Affectiveness Disorder is essentially symptoms of Jetlag and require a Circadian-Circannual Rhythm reset accomplished by a 5 minute walk outside rain or shine upon morning waking and/or using an progression light alarm clock. This may work with other types of depression but eating chocolate or petting a dog/cat for this type of depression may not help at all.
The first thing, you might want to know is that emotions and feelings are slow. They move slowly. They are so slow that we often mistake an emotion or feeling and think it relates to experience we are having in the present. Many times the emotion has nothing to do with our current experience.
So for each of the things I suggest, you will need to sustain them for 20 seconds to a minute and half to get a break from the emotion. Visual: Change your visual. This could be changing the scenery, moving your furniture around, calculating how many spots are on a purple cow, painting a wall a favourite color or even just looking up at the ceiling for 20 seconds to a minute (make sure to keep your head straight and just move your eyes to point in a upward direction). If this doesn't work, try this next one. Auditory: Change the sounds you are listening to. On an old TV show called Ally McBeal, Tracy Ulman played a shrink and told Ally to pick a new theme song. Pick a new theme song. Put something new on your iPod or MP3 player or just remove yourself from the noise. If this doesn't work try this one. Taste: Change the taste in your mouth. Maybe it's making something new, or something familiar and eating it. If you are female try chocolate. Chocolate has a chemical in it that causes your brain to switch. If chocolate doesn't work for you, try cinnamon. Cinnamon has the same brain stimulating properties of chocolate but may work better in a male brain. If this doesn't work try changing what you are smelling. Smell: Sometimes just changing the smell does wonders. Consider the smell of fresh baked cookies in a house you a looking at to possibly buy. If you choose to use vanilla, it actually stimulates the same receptors the cinnamon and chocolate do. And if you are trying to kick that chocolate habit, it will help you do that. If you are stuck in a review cycle what is happening is you are not getting to the next sense in your information processing cycle. When we process information we process it through specific patterns of our senses. To move us to the next pattern you may need to introduce a new visual, and new auditory, a new smell, or a new taste.
If none of the above things worked, you will be in category 2. And this is what I suggest: Go for a walk. Make a commitment to walk on a regular basis. In fact if you live in Vancouver, like I do, most people here suffer from a depression called Seasonal Affectiveness Disorder. What this means is our Circadian-Circannual processes are off or our internal time clocks are not functioning properly. Because of the darkness of the weather outside we tend to avoid the outdoors and this messes up out internal clocks making it feel like we constantly have jetlag. The easiest way to cure this is to go outside for a 5 minute walk every morning, rain or shine as soon as we wake up. The walking and the exposure to the natural elements makes it possible for our body clocks to reset and work properly. If we are only exposed to artificial environments we don't get that same internal clock reset. And if you are experiencing this type of depression the walking will start increasing your blood flow through your brain removing the toxins that are keeping you sluggish. An alternative is to do something tactile, like pet an animal. Petting an animal gets our brain to release endorphines (the drugs in our brain that make us feel good) which is why we tend to feel better after doing so.
Do you change or alter memories?
Some NLP practitioners change memories. It is my personal position that we respect every memory as useful information - like there is nothing wrong with you in any way, shape or form - you just have a perception of a memory that doesn’t work for you anymore. Although the process I use can be used to alter memories, I don’t advocate that. I prefer to add an alternative perception of the orginal memory that is better than what is currently available.
When someone comes in to see me, they are experiencing what seems like the worst option. It may be the only option that their brain has available currently but at one time it was the best option because it made that person feel safe.
I work with the client to create a much better option and perception of the memory and then we implant it using a bit of hypnotic languaging. The implanted information has an expanding effect so over time the effects are greater felt. So people that are not happy become happy and even happier over time.
Why is sleep important?
Sleep allows our brains to process information that we absorb throughout the day. Overtime sleep deprivation can lead to brain aneurisms, seizures (i.e.:Epilepsy), depression, auditory hallucinations and a host of other unwanted things. Getting to a dream state signifies this daily processing. If you don’t get to several dream states before our session then you might not be able to take advantage of the change available during the session. Not getting to a dream state after the session will make you highly irritable and will delay your processing.
Why take a nap before turing on a computer or TV?
The mages on TV sets and computer screens move. This stimulates the brain more and could distract the brain from some or part of the learning process. If you want to process or learn information quicker, as soon as you learn it, take a nap. This will help with your retention. After the nap feel free to watch as much TV as you want or work on a computer.
Why must I take a 5 minute nap immediately after a session?
During the session I am using hypnosis to make you feel more relaxed. As the session goes on, you go deeper and deeper into a trans state and become more and more suggestible. For my client’s safety, I recommend people take a 5 minute nap before looking at a computer screen or TV - even just closing your eyes for this amount of time in car or on the bus leaving the session will raise your trans level and start the processing of the session.
We are all in different layers of trans at all times. Sleep is a level of deep trans. Being wide wake is a level of light trans. When you are directly hypnotized you are put at a level of trans I call “cluck like a chicken” because it is usually the person’s state of highest suggestibility before sleep. I like to keep my clients closer to the awake level of trans rather than the “cluck like a chicken level.” However, by the end of the session most people are close to the “cluck like a chicken” trans level. To raise this level, I have people take a nap before they do anything or interact with anyone. During the session you will experience or have experienced slow hypnosis called “hypnotic languaging.” It occurs so slowly that clients don’t recognize it. I use not just my words, but also my body language to create this effect.
How does sleep relate to depression and Seasonal Affectivenes Disorder?
A disrupted sleep is commonly associated with depression. People with depression often report being excessively tired but at the same time not being able to get to sleep easily. The tiredness signals a chemical imbalance that prevents the person from going through the stages of sleep properly.
Current sleep research indicates that people with depression show disrupted circadian rhythms across brain regions. Circadian rhythms happen to be the internal time clock that determines if we are experiencing Jet-lag or not. In fact this Jet-lag effect is what people are experiencing when they have Seasonal Affectiveness Disorder(SADs).
How do I know if I have PTSD?
One thing you can do is fill out a PTSD assessment here. This PTSD assessment will give you some idea if you are suffering the effects of PTSD.
Alternatively, you can come in and see Tracy for an assessment and treatment. The tricky part about PTSD is that sometimes it appears many years after the trauma after a memory of the trauma is stimulated - called "late onset PTSD." In this case, we can deal with the issue presented.
How do I support someone who is suffering from PTSD?
Did you know PTSD can be caught like a cold? But it happens when the person suffering from PTSD is asked by people who are trying to support them to recall and recount as much of the incident as they can. Then the act of visualizing someone else's traumatic situation can cause PTSD in the experiencer.
What you need to know is that in trauma therapy many times we don't need to actually deal directly with the trauma because it may cause more damage than good. This part of trauma therapy is based on the individual. If we build up the individuals self-esteme and self-worth, the incident many times becomes incidental. Instead, if you are providing support to someone with PTSD help them create a safe, nurturing place to live and space free of triggers or things that stimulate their bad memories. DO NOT encourage them to tell you about their experience. Let them be how they are and help them make thier life as normal as possible. Let them tell you what they feel is right for them and give them the ability to control as much as their world as possible. If they do tell you something about their trauma, do not ask questions or pry more. You can thank them for feeling comfortable enough with you to share their experience. Ask them what they need from you for support. Make sure to monitor yourself for sleepless nights, nightmares, etc. and if these symptoms persist longer than 2 days seek professional help.
What is PTSD?
PTSD or Post Traumatic Stress Disorder is caused by a psychologically traumatic event involving actual threat of death or serious injury to oneself or witness or even experiencing through someone else. Symptoms involve re-experiencing the event, changing sleep patterns, difficulty concentrating, aggression, nightmares, disturbing thoughts, anxiety, depression, distraction, irritability, full or partial loss of memory, nightmares, flashbacks, avoidance, emotional numbing, guilt, withdrawal, etc.
When a person has any experience the brain logs the event using the sensory (pictures, sounds, tastes, smells and feelings) system. If a person wants to retrieve (or remember) such an event, the person needs to access one or more of the sensory inputs used in remembering the event. Over time the brain practices accessing events or memories. A good event will seem to get better. A painful event will appear to get worse. This is because when the brain reviews a memory, it embeds information from the moment the review takes place and adds it to the memory. This rehearsal of the memory of the event occurs many times over a 21 day period after the event becoming a habit in the brain. As a result of this brain practice we may not remember consciously some or all of the original event and are frequently surprised by our reactions to the things that happen around us.
I had a client that told me casually that she hadn't driven a car in 10 years but would be getting into the driver's position again soon. When I asked her to imagine she was in the driver's seat while in my office, her eyes bulged out, her head backed up, she started raising her voice and then she quickly changed subject. When I brought her back to the subject of driving a couple minutes later to discuss what had just taken place, she told me she didn't know what happened to her that caused her to act like that.
This reaction is similar to the reaction many people have to mouse or a spider. Our brains perceive a mouse or spider that is less than an inch high as much larger. It results in us reacting by stand on chairs and tables. Our brain distorts the size of the spider or mouse through practice. We are in affect experiencing what it is like to have a flashback. We are reacting not to reality but to a memory that was triggered in our brain.
When a person experiences something traumatic the brain is overloaded with sensory information. The multiple sensory overload makes it easy for the brain to access the original painful memory at many access points. As part of our brain's survival system the brain rehurses every aspect of the painful experience to identify such an event in the future. As the brain practices this information, the brain imbeds additional information available in the current phobic state but may not have occured in the orriginal event. As time goes on the individual experiences more and more of their reality closing in around them as every subsiquent reminder triggers the more of the original painful memory. Because the brain doesn't know the difference between reality and a memory, as time goes on, every aspect in a PTSD sufferers' life apears dangerous to them. This results in exhaustion, depression, withdrawal and other unwanted effects.
With my work, I've been able to work with and alter the way an individual's brain accesses these painful memories so that the original memories are used in more productive ways resulting in tremendous relief. Most PTSD sufferers experience full recovery within 3 sessions over a 3 to 6-month period of time.
What is PTSD or Post Traumatic Stress Disorder?
PTSD is defined as an anxiety disorder that is triggered by the the brain's repeatative learning process after the exposure to a traumatic or life threatening event.
Have other questions you want answered?
Contact me and I'll write you back and post your questions and answer here.