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TRAUMA RECOVERY

EMDR™/ EYE MOVEMENT INTEGRATION™

Eye Movement Integration™: “. . . Kindler, Gentler, and More Effective than EMDR™”

One of the goals of therapy is creating a positive way forward to become a more thriving and whole person.  In the process of exploring and discovering their strengths some people become stuck and are unable to understand or process events that have happened in their past.  This is not because the individual is uncapable, rather it can be caused by neurobiological processes.  

There have been multiple therapeutic techniques developed for assisting someone in moving forward.  EMDR™ (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) is the best known therapeutic approach for helping individuals process traumas, negative past experiences, and phobias. EMI™ (Eye Movement Integration™) has been described as a “kinder, gentler, more rapid and effective version of EMDR™.”

Dr. Randi Fredricks, Ph.D. further describes the relationship and history between EMI™ and EMDR™, click here to read more.

HISTORY AND EXPLANATION

 

EMI™ and EMDR™ both advanced from NLP (neurolinguistic programming). Eye Movement Integration™ was first introduced by Robert Dilts in 1981 as “Eye Movement Pattern Interruption Therapy.” Robert studied with, and modeled the therapeutic approaches of Milton H. Erickson, M.D., in the late 1970s.

The term Eye Movement Integration™ was coined by Steve Andreas, M.S., and developed by Steve and Connirae Andreas. It has been further developed and enhanced by Ron Klein of the American Hypnosis Training Academy. EMI™ is used by thousands of therapists world-wide.  I was personally trained in EMI™ by Ron Klein. 

Unlike other methods, EMI™ does not require emotional regression into the traumatic event. It intentionally avoids false memory and/or the chance of re-traumatizing the client. Further, EMI™ empowers the client to utilize their own strengths and resources to heal.  In Eye Movement Integration Therapy: The Comprehensive Clinical Guide, Danie Beaulieu, Ph.D., writes that EMI™ “ . . . does not extinguish the memory of what happened, but it does strip off the emotional charge that [ . . . causes ] the problems.”

To read more about the history and neurobiology of Eye Movement Integration™ click here to read an explanation by Danie Beaulieu, PhD.

Peeping Through a Leaf

“Eye Movement Integration™ (EMI™) is a brief, effective therapy which produces lasting results.  EMI™ is an exceptionally effective...treatment.  Unlike other eye movement methods, EMI™ does not require or encourage age regression. Therefore, the concerns of false memory and/or the likelihood of re-traumatizing [the] client are avoided.  …The client is encouraged to find the answer within and utilize her/his own resources for change and to heal.”


 

Ron Klein

Girl Running in a Field

WHEN IS EYE MOVEMENT INTEGRATION™ NEEDED?

 

As humans, we adapt certain strategies and coping mechanisms to move forward in our life.  The strategies we develop as children and adolescents continue operating in our life and relationships as adults.  Sometimes these strategies and techniques are beneficial and other times they can lead to anxiety, depression, anger, and interpersonal conflict.  

Frequently, these early life experiences manifest in our life in unexpected and counter-intuitive ways.  For example, someone who was verbally or physically abused may withdraw or lash out in their adult relationships.  This can create difficulty making friends, succeeding at work, or finding a partner.

In my experience, once an individual is able to process past traumas and experiences they are able to create effective and healthy patterns and behaviors in their life and relationships.

“. . . we conducted a small pilot study and found that, on average, a single treatment with EMI™ could reduce post traumatic stress symptoms by 48%, while a full course of treatment reduced symptoms by 83%. . . Releasing [clients] from the burden of the traumatic baggage they have carried for years never ceases to be one of my greatest professional rewards.”

 

Danie Beaulieu, PhD

FOR MORE INFORMATION

 

To see a condensed EMI™ session, go to this YouTube video of Steve Andreas: “NLP Eye Movement Integration with a Vietnam Veteran (PTSD):

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