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  • Writer's pictureEmily Smith

The Significance of the Dual Attunement Frame in Brainspotting for Trauma Therapy

Embarking on the journey of healing from trauma in therapy often involves exploring innovative therapeutic approaches, as traditional talk-therapy often doesn't touch the roots of the pain. Brainspotting is a powerful trauma healing modality that relies on client/therapist relationship through what is known as the Dual Attunement Frame, a concept that acts as a guiding compass in the complex terrain of trauma therapy.

Developed by Dr. David Grand, this therapeutic approach leverages the brain's innate capacity for self-healing. It operates on the belief that the direction of an individual's gaze can influence emotional states, and by identifying specific "brainspots" through a client's gaze, therapists can help their clients access and process trauma at a profound level.

At the core of Brainspotting lies the Dual Attunement Frame, perhaps the most important component of Brainspotting. It involves therapists attuning to both the internal experiences and physiology as well as the external responses of clients. This dual attunement creates a dynamic therapeutic environment, fostering safety, trust, and a multifaceted exploration in trauma therapy. The "internal attunement" encompasses the therapist attuning to the client's internal experience, such as emotions, thoughts, sensations, etc. Genuine presence creates a space for clients to explore their inner world without judgement. Simultaneously, Brainspotting therapists attune to the external presentation of the client's experience such as physical cues, non-verbal expressions, and subtle shifts in body language. This dual attunement provides therapists with valuable insights into the client's emotional state and trauma responses while cultivating an experience of safety.

The Dual Attunement Frame proves indispensable in trauma healing for several reasons:

Enhanced Safety: Safety is paramount in trauma therapy, and the Dual Attunement Frame establishes a secure therapeutic space. Attuning to both internal and external dimensions reassures clients that their experiences are seen, heard, and held in utmost care.

Trust Building: Trust forms the bedrock of effective trauma therapy. The therapist's attunement to both internal and external realms fosters a trusting therapeutic relationship. This trust is instrumental for clients to engage in the vulnerable process of exploring and processing traumatic memories.

Comprehensive Exploration: Trauma is often stored in the body, and external presentations provide valuable information into the internal experience. The dual attunement frame allows for a comprehensive exploration of the client's trauma, addressing both cognitive and somatic dimensions of pain and healing.

Holistic Healing: Recognizing the holistic nature of trauma, the Dual Attunement Frame aligns with a comprehensive and integrative approach to healing, acknowledging the interconnectedness of the mind, body, and spirit.



attunement in brainspotting for trauma therapy




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