Category Archives: The PTSD Blueprint

The first 13 blog posts were published as a set and their show notes put together into a 50-page PDF E-book titled The PTSD Blueprint. It is included when you sign up on the email list at www.PTSDacademy.com.

When Healers Feel the Wounds

Episode 009: Surviving Life as Level-III Empath.

In coming episodes you’ll hear more about the physical components of how a body with PTSD eventually burns our early causing some predictable clinical syndromes. For now, we will focus on what an “empath” is. Even if you are not an empath or a “sensitive person”, there are many in our world and you won’t fully grasp what PTSD is until you understand how a group of people different than you experience the world.

What is a Level-III Empath?

  1. Sympathy is feeling sorry for someone.
  2. Empathy is sharing the suffering with them in a compassionate way.
  3. Being an empath means that you actually feel what the suffer feels. Not only to you sympathize but your empathy is experience in your body. Bodily sensations of pain, anxiety, tension and tightness build whenever you’re around certain people or think about certain things. If this sound like you, you’re probably an empath and you should get yourself educated about what you can do about it. Judith’s book was a great start for me though quite a bit of it still sounds off the wall, so I create courses now in PTSD Academy to teach people how to heal from PTSD that are empaths.

Surviving life as a Level-III Empath

Two significant experiences led me to my current view on the “chemistry” between people and being an empath. The first happened when I was in psychiatry residency, I was surprised by the number of grandparent who were letting their children and grandchildren be disrespectful to them. None of the books or classes had prepared me for how to think about this problem, much less what to do about it. So, like I was trained to do, I did my own research and found a book titled Setting Boundaries with your Adult Children, by Allison Bottke that helped open my eyes to generational enabling behaviors. I was already familiar with enabling from Al-Anon, but somehow this was different.

The second experience was the physical tension, stress, and pain I felt when I first started doing PTSD work. It seemed like the client’s energy was transferred over to me and I began to listen closer to my friends that talked about “releasing” unwanted energy. That’s when my Amazon search led me to Judith Orloff’s book, The Empath’s Survival Guide: Life Strategies for Sensitive People.  Sensitive people? When did I become a sensitive person?

Self-Care Redefined

So what are we really saying here? If you accept that you are affected by other's energy, than you can decide to learn what to do about it. See, in the background of the always distracting PTSD are some things you're supposed to be doing for yourself anyway - like continuing to grow up and be responsible.

The Four Adult Tasks of Intimacy

  1. Helping Others.
  2. Receiving Care.
  3. Negotiating one's own needs. Advocating for one's self.
  4. Feeling comfortable going your own way when you know it's right.

If you, or someone you know, suffers from the energy they absorb working with PTSD survivors, join PTSD Academy to learn tips and strategies for your to set energetic (and physical) boundaries!

“New Age” Healings for PTSD: A Sign of the Times

Episode 008. Ten or 20 years ago, you never could have convinced my undergraduate Biology professors, my allopathic medical school faculty, or my Emergency Medicine or Psychiatry attending physicians that I’d be writing about energy healing and metaphysical topics on a blog. To this observation I say, Welcome to Episode 8".

Mainstream Western Medicine Leaves Out 'Healing'

My academic life had been unusual only because it began while I was in the Army stationed in Germany in the late 1990’s. A few years later I was out of the Army and in school full time through the University of Texas, Texas A&M Health Science Center, and Baylor Scott & White’s educational systems. It wasn’t my fault that those experiences groomed me to think that modern medicine and the scientific formula had all the answers. My attitude out of training was simple: “If they didn’t mention it in my training, it must be inconsequential.” When I was in the mainstream, I never asked “Where is this stream going?”

Reiki Energy Healing Now Widely Accepted for PTSD

Imagine my surprise when, what I thought were New Age, energy healing was being used by the US military. Since then, I’ve read books like The Subtle Body: An Encyclopedia of Your Energetic Anatomy, by Cyndi Dale. The particular book is the text book for the local Reiki class. Again, I found that my college chemistry, physics and biology classes had not prepared me to learn that there are at least two ways that people communicate “telepathically” that isn’t quazi-spiritual at all. We emit an electromagnetic frequency (EMF) that others can detect. Also, the variability of the pause between our heartbeats creates an EMF pattern that is detectable by other human brains. “Chemistry” between people, as it turns out, has a lot more to do with quantum physics.

Generally speaking, there is mainstream science knowledge I was taught in college, medical school, Emergency Medicine internship, and 4-year psychiatry residency. I was really ignorant about acupuncture, yoga, meditation for anything other than sobriety, reflexology, and Reiki energy healing. By “healing”, I mean supporting the body’s self-healing mechanisms.

If Hypnosis is Metaphysical, EMDR is Not.

The closest I got to any form of metaphysical therapy was a one hour, informal lecture on hypnosis. We were 4 residents and a teacher chatting about a few bullet points on a printout, which we were not required to read. The meeting actually contained about 15 minutes of educational value. Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) was also taught but has a more CBT flair.

Now, I don’t expect my allopathic medical school to devote the time and resources to teaching these subjects in any great detail. What I can say is that reading The Subtle Body and watching the documentary I AM left me feeling lied to and cheated.

What I’ve discovered since then is that there are dozens of modalities that PTSD survivors use successfully to self-regulate after serious trauma. I teach many of them personally in PTSD Academy, where we join mainstream folks with holistic, ancient therapies into the same room, looking at a common operating picture of health.

Peripherally-Related Energy Healings

  1. Somato-Respiratory Integration
  2. Reiki Energy Healing
  3. Trauma and Tension Releasing Exercise
  4. Traditional Massage
  5. Chiropractic Care
  6. Reflexology: visit www.ARCB.net to look up a Board-Certified reflexologist in your area.
  7. Prayer and the laying on of hands
  8. The Emotion Code
  9. Freedom Tapping Technique
  10. Tai Chi
  11. Acupuncture
  12. Mindfulness Meditation

References and Documentaries for PTSD Healing

Faith in PTSD Recovery

And now for the “sign of the times” reference in today’s title. Many of the Unitarians and Pre-tribulationist Christians I know believe that mankind is in the biblical “end times”. If you follow their logic, it really changes the commentary on what we may be witnessing happen as this revolution against traditional psychotherapy unfolds.

"End Times" Spiritual Healing

There are a couple of monumental biblical references that support such a view. Taken together, they posit that what we are witnessing is God’s Spirit being poured out on all mankind (Acts 2:17). So those in the energy healing, or even marginalized or fringe groups open to spiritual matters, as well as the Church, are experiencing an awakening accompanied with signs and miracles. Unfortunately, Jesus said many will say to me in that day “Lord, Lord. I cast out demons in your name.” But Jesus will say “Get away from me. I never knew you. (Matthew 7:21-23)” Therefore, one must be careful to keep one’s faith, history, archaeology straight and recognize that spiritual healing may be making a comeback.

THE END

The next episode is #9 titled When Healers Feel the Wounds: Surviving Life as a Level-III Empath.

Self-Sabotage: A Harbinger of All Things Bad

Episode 005: The Bottom Line Up Front is this: If you believe you deserve to succeed you will not self-sabotage. Shame is Self-Induced While that sounds simple on face value, the reasons behind low self-esteem come in infinite combinations. While helping a friend write a grant proposal for a non-profit, I developed a tool that…
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Trauma Secrets are the Enemy of Freedom

Episode 004: At the moment of a trauma, the victim’s voice is squashed. Their will and choice is taken. Recovery involves finding your voice, but PTSD likes to keep people living in fear and suffering from their secrets. My challenge here in Episode 004 is to demonstrate a degree of my own authenticity so as…
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What is PTSD? (part 3/3) Hypervigilance and Fear-Based Living

Episode 003: Welcome to the third part of our three part series on “What is PTSD?” You may have run across websites that list the symptoms don’t begin to touch on what it’s really like to have PTSD. We’ll continue this exploratory series on different traits that people wind up with that predict response to…
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What is PTSD? (part 2/3) Insomnia and the Effects of Stress

Episode 002: Previously, we discussed the negative impact of stress on the brain. Specifically, we looked at how chronic increases in adrenaline and cortisol shrink the hippocampus and prefrontal cortex areas of the brain. This negatively affects stress tolerance and the formation of new memories. In today’s episode, we’ll examine the components of success or…
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What is PTSD (part 1/3) PTSD Symptoms and Intimate Relationships

Episode 001: Hello world! My name is Elias Diam, MD, but folks know me as Doctor Dan. Welcome to the PTSD Academy Podcast!! In today’s episode, we will cover the DSM-V criteria, trust, what I call “the Big Three” (PTSD, Major Depression, and Insomnia), and the importance of a safe partner during trauma recovery. A…
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