On Developmental Stress and Trauma

Developmental Trauma and Survival Styles

This 2-hour video is well worth watching. Dr. Larry Heller talks about developmental traumas and how children survived them by creating survival strategies that become ways of being and acting in the world as adults.

His approach, called NARM, is a treatment based in a long tradition of somatic psychology, Somatic Experiencing®, and bio-energetics. It’s very effective and transformational.

Being a Certified Practitioner of NARM, I use it to help people with great results. I can’t speak highly enough of Dr. Heller and what he, along with Dr. Aline LaPierre, has developed.

Their book is excellent too: Healing Developmental Trauma: How Early Trauma Affects Self-Regulation, Sel-Image, and the capacity for Relationship–The NeuroAffective Relational Model for Restoring Connection

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Epigenetics, Stress, and Trauma

Stress, Trauma, and the Role of Epigenetics

This excellent documentary from the BBC, goes into the discovery and the science of epigenetics.



Epigenetics could explain of how intergenerational trauma works biologically. This video is fascinating and holds many implications for treating illness, stress, and trauma.

Share this by clicking on the links below.

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Stress and Trauma and Healing Power of Pets

How a Dog Saved a Vet with Trauma and PTSD

In this 7-minute video, an ex-Marine talks about his PTSD and how a dog saved his life.

This video is inspiring and full of heart. Enjoy.


It is well known how the support of friends and family can help those suffering with stress, trauma, and PTSD. But sometimes those people withdraw from those around them and isolate themselves. Well, the love of a dog can be just as helpful and assist the victims of trauma in moving towards better relationships with people.

Please Share this Video by Clicking Below

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The Brain: The Source of Stress and Trauma

In this 3-minute video, Dr. David Berceli gives a concise explanation of how the brain is involved in stress and trauma. He explains how trauma originates in the lower parts of the brain that then have a lasting effect on the limbic system–the mid-brain–and the emotions. The top part of the brain, the neo-cortex, then has to deal with the actions of the lower brains, trying to cope with the trauma and make sense of it.

His main assertion, which forms the basis of my own practice in treating stress and trauma, is that stress and trauma need to be treated with this dynamic in mind. In other words, the lower brain structures, the sources of the  trauma that produce lingering effects in the body, need to be addressed first.

(There is an ad at the end of the video asking you to join an organization.)

Dr. David Berceli is the creator of Trauma Release Exercises.

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Is PTSD Common?

PTSD can happen to you if you have ever been through a trauma.

Trauma is a stressful event that happened to you, or you saw it happen to someone else, that was shocking and scary. Usually, you had no control over what happened and may have felt trapped with your life, or the lives of others, in danger.

Roughly half of all women and 60% of all men will have at least one trauma in their lifetimes. While women are more prone to sexual assault and child sexual abuse, men are more likely to experience accidents, physical assault, or witness death or injury–such as combat vets and first responders.

• About 8% of the U.S. population will have PTSD sometime in their lives.

• About 5.2 million adults suffer with PTSD each year.

• 10% of all women and 5% of all men will develop PTSD at some point in their lives.

• Some ethnic groups, such as blacks and Hispanics, are more likely to develop PTSD since they are exposed to more traumatic events than whites.

Who is Prone to PTSD?

Although going through a trauma doesn’t mean you will get PTSD, you have a greater chance of developing it if you:

• were either the victim or witness to a trauma

• were seriously hurt

• went through a long-lasting trauma or something very severe

• thought you were in danger

• thought a friend or family member was in danger

• was not able to help yourself or a loved one during a trauma

You are also more likely to develop PTSD if you:

• had medical procedures when young

• were abused as a child, either physically, emotionally, and/or sexually

• have little support from family and friends

• have unexpectedly lost a loved one

• have had recent, life-changing events that were stressful

• drink a lot of alcohol or take drugs

• are a woman

• are young

• were adopted

PTSD often develops long after the traumatic event. So you may not link the symptoms you develop with the traumatic events that may have occurred years earlier. You won’t think that your anxiety, depression, fits of anger, or extreme fatigue have anything to do with a traumatic event.

You may seek help for these isolated symptoms not realizing you have PTSD. But PTSD requires its own treatment.

If you have PTSD, or think a loved one may, then get help. Without help, PTSD will begin to grow and develop new symptoms as the body struggles with the damage it suffered so long ago.

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New Stress Relief Methods

Help With Stress Relief

Stress is so widespread and does so much damage to health, business, and relationships. Yet most people ignore it, live with it, or seek distractions from it. Perhaps most people stress, stress relief methods, stress relief techniques, stress management, managing stress, reducing stress, stress reductio, help with stressdon’t realize just how damaging it is. We gripe about it when we’re young, learn to live with it when we’re middle-aged, and then suffer the strokes and heart attacks caused by it when we’re older. Then it is too late.

I have tried, over the years, to get people to lose their stress while they still can. I have tried to let people know that traumas, whether from early in life or later on, keep high levels of stress locked into place. And I’ve tried to let people know that something can be done about it.

Normally, I see people privately for one-on-one sessions. The results have been stunning as so many I’ve worked with have left their suffering and stress behind and moved into new lives and relationships filled with vitality and joy.

Now I’ve taken the tools and techniques I’ve developed over the years and put them all into one website. When you need help, you can click on the site any time and get instant relief. Or you can follow the trainings and learn how you can lose stress permanently.

This is a great place for those of you who can’t see me privately to start eliminating stress from your life. It’s also a great place for those of you who do work with me–or have in the past–to be able to maintain or refresh what you’ve already learned.

This website is another way I can help those who need it.

family constellations, trauma, PTSD, PTSD treatment, Somatic Experiencing, anxiety, depression, insomniaGo to the site by clicking here.

And share it with those you love by clicking on the button below.


Larry Kessler

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How Stress and Trauma Can Make You Ugly

How Stress and Trauma Make You Ugly

stress, trauma, PTSD, stress relief, help with stress, help with stress relief, stress maangementEver look in the mirror and see the stress on your face? Or perhaps noted that you’ve gotten a little bit uglier? When you are under a lot of stress or have lived with the effects of trauma for a while, it shows on your face, your skin, in your eyes, and in the way you hold yourself.

Stress and trauma not only affect you mentally, emotionally, and physically, they also affect your health and increases your risk of developing:

  • heart disease
  • immunological diseases
  • cancer
  • strokes.

And those are in addition to making you ugly.

So how can stress make you ugly?

  • Vices

For many people, indulging in smoking, drinking, or mega amounts of food help pacify the feelings of stress. Many do all three plus some others like marijuana and prescription or non-prescription drugs. All of these prove fatal to beauty.

Smoking dries and ages the skin; drinking damages the liver and increases sugars in the blood giving the skin a flaccid tone; and overeating piles on fat and makes the skin look mottled and pitted.

  • Losing Sleep

Stress causes you to not sleep properly at night. And lack of sleep is one of the fastest ways to lose your attractiveness. Besides the mental and emotional toll sleeplessness takes, it also makes you look tired and drained. And how does that look in the mirror?

  • stress, trauma, PTSD, stress relief, help with stress, help with stress relief, stress maangementPimples and Acne

Stress can cause pimple or acne breakouts. It causes the body to increase its production of hormones that stimulate more oils in the skin. An increase in stress means more of these hormones, which means more oil that clogs your pores, ultimately leading to breakouts. And that ain’t pretty.

  • Wrinkles

You should be concerned about this: Stress Causes Wrinkles! When you’re under stress, your body’s cells age more rapidly. This causes your skin to lose its suppleness and look old, dry, and wrinkled. Still not reason enough to take care of your stress?

  • Hair Falling Out

If you have perpetual, ongoing stress, your hair will start thinning, breaking, and falling out more than usual. And there is no way to prevent this kind of hair loss. Comb-overs will only work for so long.

Unfortunately, even after you have taken steps to reduce your stress, your hair loss may still continue. Only by dealing with stress and managing it now can you stop future hair loss.

  • Vitamin Deficiency

Stress hormones interfere with the body’s ability to absorb vitamins and nutrients from the foods you eat. Vitamin deficiency not only affects your health, it also shows up in your physical appearance.

So instead of breaking all the mirrors where you live because you do not like what you see, or covering yourself with a veil or mask when you go out, ask yourself if you have been under a lot of stress lately.

Then do something about it. It will only get worse, and you will only get uglier if you don’t.


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Pain Expert Talks About Mind-Body Benefits

Reprinted from NIH Report, March 29, 2013

What happens in your brain when you experience pain? Can mind-body approaches really help ease pain?

stress, trauma, pain, stress management, pain management,

Dr. M. Catherine Bushnell

Dr. M. Catherine Bushnell, scientific director of NCCAM’s Division of Intramural Research, tackled these topics when she recently spoke on “The Neural Basis of Mind-Body Pain Therapies” in NCCAM’s Integrative Medicine Research Lecture Series.

“Pain is a multidimensional, complex and individual experience,” said Bushnell, who is leading a new, cross-cutting NIH research initiative on pain. Research has been yielding fascinating insights on pain’s underlying biology. For example, imaging has shown that even in conditions in which the causes of pain are not visible or known, the brains of pain patients do experience pain. And it is evident where in the brain this happens.

When someone is exposed to a pain stimulus, a series of signals ascend from the body site to the spinal cord and then the forebrain. Then, as part of pain processing, a series of signals descend in the opposite direction. In both directions, multiple pathways and cells, such as neurons and neurotransmitters, are involved.

Continue reading

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Washing Away the Trauma of Birth

Just being born is a trauma for a baby as it leaves the warm, moist comfort of the womb and enters the glaring lights and abrasive sounds of a new world.

This video shows how a newborn’s raw nervous system can be soothed and calmed into a peaceful state. How lovely to have been welcomed into the world this way.

This is a must-see video.

Notice how the touch and gentle massaging helps the baby’s nervous system to calm  after having gone through the hardship of birth. Likewise, gentle touch can have a profound affect on soothing an adult’s nervous system that has been ravaged by stress and trauma. Early traumas in adults that occurred before 2 years of age are particularly well-treated with this type of therapy.

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New Videos to Help Your Stress

Help with Stress Relief

I have started a new site that offers people not only help with stress and useful techniques in managing stress but also help to get rid of stress permanently. It’s also a place where people with stress can come together and help each other by sharing what’s going on with them, commenting and giving advice, and listening.

Most Stress Management techniques only give you ways to cope with stress. But that means that you already have stress that needs to be managed. Besides helping you deal with stress as it arises, this site will also eliminate your reaction to events and situations in life that causes stress.

Recently,  I added some new videos you can watch anytime you want. These relaxing videos contain calming sounds that will melt away your stress:

stress, stress management, help with stress, help for stress, less stress,Some have gentle music and peaceful images that help stress dissolve. Some combine music along with sounds of nature. Others have only sounds of nature without music and keep a steady video of a stream or waterfall on camera so you can watch and listen at the same time. Several videos contain chanting, which many people find calming, and others provide sounds in the background to help you focus or study.

You can watch and listen to these videos. Or maybe you will want to just put on a set of headphones, turn off the monitor,  close your eyes, and let the sounds wrap around you and carry you away.

Spend 10 minutes, 20 minutes, as much time as you want.

The best part is they are only a click away. So you can be working on your computer, click on one of the videos (or audios),  take a quick break, and calm yourself instantly for however long you want, at home or at the office.

Click Here to Check Out the Site: It goes way beyond stress management.

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