What is C.C.E. you might be asking. It’s Corrective Emotional Experience. Mom, just as any of us who have had any situation that our operating system has coded as traumatic will benefit by revisiting, reprocessing and re-imprinting that experience.
That is the basic premise of EMI, Brief Eye Movement Therapy and EMDR. Let’s do an brief intervention that could be used with or without eye movement therapy to create the C.C.E.
Take a few deep breaths. Breathe in through your nose. Exhale through your mouth. Just relax and here we go.
Make a hologram of yourself in a negative experience you’ve had and see it over there, away from you, about 10-12 feet. A little caution here: not something too traumatic; not a 9-10. Pick something safer for starters. Something that is maybe a 4-5. Something you just don’t like.
You might consider something you don’t like about yourself. I’ve got a few of those.
Really get into the feeling of this thing you don’t like about yourself and you really wish it would go away. See what you see. Hear what you hear. Feel what you feel.
Do you see it in color? Black/white, grey? Is it bright? Dim? Is it moving? Still? Details like that are what we want to notice. Does it have any sound? Maybe some demeaning, hurtful, self-talk. Is it loud? Soft? Mono? Surround sound?
Okay, now, slowly – move the image farther away. Slowly, 13 feet away. Fifteen feet away, slowly as it get smaller and dimmer, 17 feet away. Now it’s smaller and smaller, 20 feet, 30 feet, 50 feet away, dimmer and dimmer, so small now that you can hardly make it out.
Does it feel the same, better or worse? It probably feels different. It probably feels better. It’s a Corrective Emotional Response to your subjective experience.
True or False?
- This is an example of Judith S. Beck’s, ‘imagery.’
- It demonstrates how our sensory acuity (see, hear, feel) can change emotional response – in a few moments.
- Moving a depressing image farther away can make it feel better.
- This could be used with EMDR and Motivational Interviewing.
This is from the Criminal Justice and Addictions Counseling, NAADAC Approved Education piece, #192679. It’s in the catalog.
Depending on the situation and the severity of the problem, we may need to revisit this experience for additional desensitizing and reprocessing. Each case if different.
As you’ve probably discovered, this exercise could open up all kinds of useful information to discuss later if the client was willing.