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  • Writer's pictureNicole Ambrose, LCSW

Reshape Your Mindset and Let Go of Perfectionism With EMDR Therapy

Do you ever feel like no matter how hard you work and how much you achieve it still never feels like it’s enough? Like there’s something within you that WILL NOT allow you to be proud of yourself for longer than a few minutes before you’re in pursuit of the next big goal. However, when it comes to making mistakes or receiving criticism, you can sit in shame and disappointment for what feels like an eternity. Your mind is super sensitive to negative comments from others and also tends to minimize or even dismiss any complimentary feedback.

If you find yourself caught in the web of these challenges, know that you are not alone. Many high-functioning individuals, just like you, battle with the invisible shackles of their past and the relentless pursuit of perfection. The pressure to excel, coupled with unresolved childhood trauma, can create a breeding ground for these challenges. 

Understandably, it may feel overwhelming, leaving you questioning your worth and capabilities. Take a deep breath; what you're experiencing is a normal response to abnormal circumstances. The good news is that there is a path to healing, and EMDR therapy might just be the guiding light you've been searching for.

The Basics of EMDR Therapy and How it Works in the Brain

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), developed by Dr. Francine Shapiro in the late 1980s, is a scientifically validated approach designed to help individuals process distressing memories and alleviate all of the emotional and physiological responses associated with them. EMDR works on the premise that unprocessed memories contribute to psychological distress, and by facilitating the brain's natural healing process, individuals can adapt their mindset and perspective and achieve emotional relief.

When traumatic experiences occur, the brain may struggle to process the memories properly, leading to emotional and cognitive disturbances that will resurface when triggered throughout one’s life. EMDR's unique approach involves bilateral stimulation which mirrors the brain's natural processing mechanisms during REM (Rapid Eye Movement) sleep.

This bilateral stimulation activates both hemispheres of the brain, facilitating the reprocessing of memories. Through a series of structured phases, EMDR allows individuals to access and process distressing memories, transforming their emotional impact. Essentially, EMDR helps the brain reorganize and integrate these memories into a more adaptive and less distressing form.

EMDR for Self-Confidence and Perfectionism

Now, let's explore how EMDR specifically addresses issues related to self-confidence and perfectionism. Perfectionism often stems from deeply rooted beliefs formed during childhood, where unrealistic standards were set or trauma occurred. We learn what is expected of us in this world from the people around us. 

So imagine for a second that as a child your parents were heavily concerned with the outward appearance of the family. You may have learned early on that your appearance and the opinions and judgments of others play a huge role in whether or not you received the acceptance, approval and love from your parents. Or maybe it was your grades and achievement in school that became the focal point. You did well enough to be moved to an advanced class, but now there is a looming expectation put on you by the school and your parents to perform, perform, perform otherwise you’re a FAILURE. 

There are so many scenarios that lead to the development of perfectionism. EMDR works in the following ways to help you identify and reprocess your underlying memories and beliefs, allowing you to break free from the chains of perfectionism.

Identification of Core Beliefs:

EMDR sessions guide you to pinpoint the core negative beliefs associated with perfectionism and low self-confidence. These beliefs often originate from past experiences, contributing to the ongoing struggle with unrealistic standards.

Reprocessing Traumatic Memories:

Traumatic memories from childhood may be influencing your current self-perception. EMDR provides a safe and structured environment to revisit these memories, helping you process and reframe them. By doing so, the emotional charge linked to these memories diminishes, empowering you to challenge and change the negative beliefs.

Building Positive Cognitions:

EMDR doesn't just focus on resolving past traumas; it also emphasizes building positive self-perceptions and beliefs. Through the therapeutic process, you'll work towards cultivating healthier, more adaptive cognitions, fostering self-confidence and a more realistic sense of self-worth.

EMDR Therapy Can Help You Gain Peace & Self-Acceptance

Embarking on a journey towards healing and self-discovery takes courage, and you've already demonstrated that by considering EMDR therapy. Remember, you don't have to navigate this path alone. As a licensed holistic mental health therapist, I specialize in helping individuals like you break free from anxiety, perfectionism, and childhood trauma.

In embracing EMDR therapy, you're choosing a scientifically proven method that has brought profound transformations to countless lives. The power to rewrite your narrative, boost your self-confidence, and overcome perfectionism lies within the therapeutic journey.

If this blog has resonated with you, and you're ready to take the next step towards a life of greater peace and self-acceptance, I invite you to contact me for your complimentary consultation at 954.391.5305.

I provide counseling for adults at our beautiful Coral Springs offices and online therapy through our secure telehealth platform for those who reside in the state of Florida. For more information about my services, click here

Individual therapy sessions tailored to your unique needs can be the key to unlocking the doors that lead to healing. Don't let anxiety and perfectionism hold you back any longer; take charge of your well-being today. Call me and let's embark on this transformative journey together.


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