For decades, therapy has been likened to the process of peeling back the layers of an onion. For each layer uncovered, there is another just beneath. While I savor onions and use them extensively in cooking, I’m not sure I want my professional training represented by something as pungent as an onion.
Fortunately, it turns out that therapy may be more aptly likened to an artichoke than an onion. Artichokes being a beautiful and unique flowering vegetable, with leaves that occasionally have sharp points to protect the tender and delicate heart that rests at its center. With the right care and preparation, the tough outer layers can be softened enough to allow the delicate heart to be revealed.
People can often be very similar to the artichoke, developing protective points to fend off threats solely for the purpose of protecting their most vulnerable self. However, sometimes these protective points are not very intelligent, frequently mistaking friends or opportunities for threats. To correct this error of armor, sometimes we need to work with someone so that we can reprogram our thinking and limit the number of protective points we rely on day to day. By putting down our shields, we get to open up and reveal our hearts, which is really the only way to fully enjoy the ‘meat’ of life.
Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) is a highly researched treatment protocol that has proven effective for many therapeutic issues, including lowering protective defenses and correcting distorted ideas about the mis-perceived threats in our lives. It can be applied to uncover and resolve longstanding limiting core beliefs and unload old hurts or injuries that still haunt us. EMDR is a remarkable therapeutic gift and its discovery has and shall forever change the landscape of therapy.
Check out this EMDR infographic to see what I mean.