In my previous post on emotional alchemy, I shared 3 techniques to convert toxic emotions, pain, and trauma into therapeutic offerings that benefit others. I also shared how, at the heart of emotional alchemy is this concept of energy transference. Where we take an emotion, painful memory, or traumatic event and we repurpose it.
With enough intensity and frequency, those experiences aren’t “destroyed” but they’re transformed into something more manageable, less painful, and lighter to carry with time. These things may never go away, and that’s okay. so long as, they become easier for us to bare.
This is important because energy transference doesn’t provide unrealistic notions that painful experiences can just magically go away. But, we can learn to take the ashes or wreckage of what we’ve been through and “refurbish” it.
As a scientific law, energy cannot be created or destroyed; but… it can change form! That’s the key. That’s our “out” if there is one.
In this post, I want to zero in on a quote by Nikola Tesla as a springboard for everything we’re going to talk about.
By the end of his life, Tesla wasn’t just a great scientific intellect, his scientific discoveries and inventions had pushed him into more spiritual/metaphysical waters. In his final years, he was more of a scientific mystic than the “lab rat” most would invision him as.
“If you want to find the secrets of the universe, think in terms of energy, frequency, and vibration.”-Nikola Tesla
Everything that has happened to us is stored somewhere in our bodies. Our subconscious mind files every memory, prioritizes patterns, and creates a “highlight reel” of sorts. The core memories that have a strong emotional imprint (charge), whether positive or negative, tied to them are stored in our second brain – our heart.
It is true. Go figure… the Hebrew proverb written circa 686 B.C. was scientifically accurate when it said that the human heart doesn’t just feel, but it can think!
“As a man THINKS in his heart, so is he.”-Hebrew Proverb (23:7)
Without diving deep into the science of how we now know that our hearts serve as a second “brain,” I would like to share a very compelling book that digs into this new/emerging scientific field of psychobiology called, The Body Keeps the Score by Bessel A van der Kolk.
When we suffer a heartbreak, are sexually violated, lose of a loved-one, or are exposed to combat, the trauma we’re subjected to isn’t purely psychosomatic. It goes deeper than intrusive thoughts with a strong emotional charge. This trauma is stored in our bodies. Our bodies LITERALLY keep the “score.”
So, what do we do? How do we get “over” what our mind/bodies can’t forget?
Emotions = Energy in Motion
This isn’t purely semantic. At their core, emotions are energy that induce certain feelings. In some sense, to most of us, this is intuitive. We struggle trying to conceptualize the second part of this word emotion. The idea that what we’re feeling is an energy source IN motion.
Trauma disrupts that cycle. The emotions associated with the trauma we experienced don’t stay in motion; they are stored in our nervous system.
Why does this matter? Remember, energy cannot be created or destroyed, only transformed. The answer isn’t capping-off or suppressing the trauma in an attempt to make it go away. The answer is pinpointing the bottle neck and getting things flowing again. Putting the stored energy back IN motion.
The key is meeting the trauma/energy at its source. Our trauma isn’t stored in the mind/brain. It’s stored in our second brain – the heart.
There’s a difference in how our two brains operate. Our head-brain uses an either or, “this” or “that” way of processing information. Our heart-brain doesn’t. Because our culture loves to reinforce the way our head-brain processes information, we are encouraged and tend to think in binaries.
This can create conflict and confusion when our heat-brain begins processing what our head-brain is feeding it. What’s empowering is that we can use our heart-brain to create healthier feedback loops with our head-brain.
RESOURCE: Moving Beyond “This or That” in Our Bodies w/ Mariah Rooney
Much like unclogging a leaky pipe, we need to pinpoint the trauma held up in our hearts and help push it through our nervous system and expel it out of our bodies into another, less destructive mode of energy.
As someone who experienced a less-than optimal chilldhood, suffered sexual abuse, has combat related PTSD, and struggles to keep my Bipolar 1 INorder, I know how this all can seem overwhelming and ellusively ethereal.
Stick with me… be like water… open to suggestion… adaptable. Take comfort and courage in the fact that you’re not in this alone. I’m not merely a passive observer, I’m in this with you.
I’m going to ask you to do something courageous here. I’m going to ask you to make a mental shift that may demand an uncomfortable level of vulnerability. Bare with me. Trust the process.
Mental Shift: Suppression breeds contempt. Awareness breeds understanding.
Get comfortable with the shadow that your trauma is casting. You’re not the shadow of your trauma. It isn’t you! You can acknowledge that under certain conditions your shadow becomes visible. This is logical. The key is not confusing the sadow of your trauma with the REAL you.
Rather than suppressing your shadow or acting as if it doesn’t exist, focus on being aware of what conditions make it emerge and how to expose the shadow of your trauma to the light of who you REALLY are and who you aspire to be.
“Life (to include our trauma) isn’t happening to us, it’s happening THROUGH us. This doesn’t assign blame, it assigns the delegative authority that comes with the power to change and transform.“-Daniel Fortune
In Process: Some Practical Resources and Strategies
- Quick Read: Emotional Alchemy: 3 Simple Techniques to Transform Toxic Emotions, Pain, and Trauma into Therapeutic Offerings
- Long-Form Reading: The Body Keeps the Score
- Bookmark This: Trauma Research Foundation & HeartMath Institute
- Watch This: E-Motion Documentary
- Community: Reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org. When time permits, I personally respond to each and every email.
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