When Tod came in for his session he was smoking two packs of cigarettes a day and had been smoking for most of his life. Over the past eight months he had made tremendous improvements in his health: he had gone through a period of internal cleansing, had dramatically changed his diet, and had given up his daily Dr. Pepper habit. He was now at a good healthy weight and feeling better than he had in years. He wanted to keep going with his health improvements, but knew he couldn’t progress further until he quit smoking. He had one carton of cigarettes left and was thinking he might possibly quit when he finished that…
Sometimes a single traumatic event can wreak havoc on the sleep system for years after the trauma has passed. This was certainly the case with “Danielle,” who had not slept well ever since her husband had died eight years ago. Most nights it took her hours to fall asleep, often not falling asleep until after 2:00 a.m. Other nights she would fall asleep quicker, but then wake around 3:00 a.m. unable to return to sleep.
When “Jim” contacted me, he was pretty frustrated and upset. For the past couple of months he had been on a roller coaster ride of stress, insomnia, and sleeping pills. While the sleeping pills knocked him out most nights, he was afraid of becoming addicted and spent several nights each week not taking them. On those nights he might not sleep at all, and this was, of course, very disturbing. Then it happened that even on the nights he did take medication, he was no longer getting the knock-out conk-out effect that is so alluring for insomniacs, and sometimes not even sleeping at all. This is the point where Jim called me.
Most insomnia methods that don’t simply prescribe hypnotic sleeping pills focus on managing behaviors that affect sleep such as keeping a regular sleep schedule, limiting caffeine, and getting regular exercise. Most also suggest some form of relaxation technique to manage current stress. While these are all important steps toward overcoming insomnia, I believe the real key is to neutralize the stressors that caused the insomnia in the first place… even if the stressful events happened years or decades ago and seemingly have no relation to a person’s current life. Unresolved stressful and traumatic events get stored in the brain stem and in the tissues and can continue to wreak havoc on the nervous system until they are neutralized. A good example of this is my client of the month, “Jennie.”
While most insomnia books and programs connect current stress to sleep difficulties, most do not acknowledge how stressful or traumatic events from the past can continue to wreak havoc on the nervous system years or even decades later – even if these events seemingly have no relationship to present day life. My job as an EFT practitioner is to find and neutralize these events so the nervous system can return to a relaxed and balanced state. Here is a success story from the month of May.