Handling Physical Manifestations of Emotional Trauma

Updated on August 27, 2019
Karen Burton profile image

Karen is a certified Health Coach with training in several disciplines of energy work. She's helped hundreds of people with her techniques.

Trauma can manifest in a number of ways.
Trauma can manifest in a number of ways. | Source

Traumatic Experiences

Everyone has experienced trauma at some point in their life. How you deal with that trauma and what level of emotion you bring to that memory will determine how it manifests in your body. Disease is often a symptom that affects a place in the body not associated with a physical injury. If you don't have a physical injury, why is disease happening in that part of the body?

Chinese Medicine and Emotional Energy Flow

Chinese medicine has dealt with this question for thousands of years. According to Chinese medicine, something disrupts the meridian to that area and blocks it. If there isn't a physical block, then there may be an emotional one. When a meridian is blocked, organs in one of the many systems in the body do function optimally. This is the beginning of disease.


A meridian is an "energy highway" in the human body.

Stress, the Brain, and Fight or Flight

The brain is where all cognitive stress originates. Humans, like all animals, respond to confrontation with fight or flight. When people were nomadic, fight or flight was a life or death matter. Nowadays, it might be a bully or a boss or a dramatic teenager threatening you. Your body elicits the same response.

The fight or flight response is a triggered one. The body interprets a threat and prepares you to flee or fight. In the stomach alone, blood flow is restricted, secretions to properly digest your food is also decreased, adrenaline is overabundant, which puts your organs and systems in a heightened state of alarm. Symptoms of these reactions include indigestion, cramps, spasms, an increase in the permeability of the gut lining (leaky gut), and disruption of the gut flora. Can you imagine what would happen if you stayed in that fight or flight response for longer than a single fearful event? Well, that is exactly what is happening.

Emotional Stress and Bodily Response

This is how chronic disease starts. If the body is disrupted by blocks, and on top of this you have unhealthy habits, you could develop liver disease or diabetes. Autoimmunity drops and the body becomes increasingly susceptible to harm.

My Beliefs About Chronic Disease

I believe chronic diseases are on the rise because of our inability to address these emotional concerns, as well as our eating habits. Here I offer a way to deal with emotional trauma.

Gamut Point Releases Stress
Gamut Point Releases Stress

How to Identify Physical Weak Points

Now we tap out the trauma. As an example/case study, we'll use trauma associated with food or eating.

An Example of Domestic Trauma

Say you are at the dining room table eating a nice peaceful dinner and everyone seems happy. Your husband walks in and informs you that he wants a divorce. Your whole life is turned upside down. Say you got angry and had a very loud emotional outburst in response to that.

The emotions you felt, presumably of betrayal, anger or rage, insecurity, etc. are now all associated with that trauma. This trauma and these emotions live in your body.

For this example, we are going to use your stomach. Because the trauma happened as you were eating, the stomach is a vulnerable part of your body in the moment. Trauma travels to wherever you feel weakest, and sometimes that weak point is hard to figure out. For this demonstration though, we are going to say it is your stomach.

Physical Weak Point

When triggered, your body goes into a state of fight or flight. Your body will continue to be hyperactive whenever you talk about it the incident or see your husband because you are confronted with your emotions time and again. Now every time you are triggered by those emotions or seeing your husband, it elicits a stomachache and the fight/flight response.

What if these aches developed into a gastric issue or a digestion issue? Gastric issues include IBS and GERD. This is just one example of the potential for a single event to initiate chronic health issues.

Step One: Address Trauma Reversal

The first step in addressing these traumas is the reversal. Reversal allows you to get your body in line with what you are trying to do and what your mind wants. Once you get your body and mind in sync, turn your attention to your mind.

Step Two: Calm Yourself

Stopping the fight or flight response is the next step when dealing with trauma. You need to calm yourself before beginning to address your trauma, as it will not be as effective if your body is not currently in a calm state.

The Gamut Point

To do this always use your gamut point, which is the acupressure point for your brain. This is on the back of the hand in between your pinky and ring finger back up on the hand about a half-inch. The gamut point is the point that accesses the optic nerve. You clear the optic nerve by using eye motions.

Once you have that point, make a statement of intention such as:

"Even though my Amygdala is in a hyper-vigilant state, I choose to calm it down and allow the stress response to dissipate."

It can be that statement or something similar that brings your attention to that area of the brain and states afterward what you are choosing to do instead.

Once you have made that statement, look down hard to the right and then hard to the left without moving your head, just your eyes, while you are still tapping the gamut point. It takes a few minutes to get your system out of the fight or flight response, so give yourself about 15 to 20 minutes before you start tapping out the trauma.

Step Three: Prepare to Tap

Start by writing down how you wish to tap out your trauma. It helps to follow what you write down, as while you are tapping you might forget something. Write down the trauma, the age when it happened, and what you perceive the emotions are that are attached to it.

Next, find a quiet, safe spot. It is important to give it your full attention in a space you feel safe.

Step Four: How to Tap

When you do tapping of any sort, make sure you use two fingers with medium pressure. That way, even if you are off of the spot a bit, you'll catch it with the two fingers.

Make sure you have your trauma, emotions, and triggers all written down.

Next step is to write down the sentence to tap to. You always lead with "Even though..." It will trigger the mind to be prepared to work in spite of something.

Visualization Goals

Your goal is to create a picture and to release that picture from your body. After making the initial "even though" statement, talk to yourself using your notes about the trauma/experience you want to clear your body of. Identify which area of the body the trauma is in, the year it happened, and end your tap with replacing the trauma with amazing things you want instead, like happiness, joy, health, freedom, etc.

An Example Tapping

Let's take our example above and create a statement.

"Even though I felt betrayed, angry, and humiliated when my husband told me he wanted a divorce, I will persist. This happened when I was 25. I often experience a stomachache when triggered, and I would like for this to stop. I choose to clear these emotions and this trauma from my stomach and every organ and system in my body and replace it with healing calm, peace, joy, and anticipation of great things to come."

Once you cleared this, don't be afraid to clear again because different emotions came up while tapping. Trauma is like an onion. You peel it away one layer at a time to release it.

Tap the Trauma Away

So, you are now empowered. You can choose to tap, or not to tap, but I have now given you the key. The next step is yours.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.


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    • Lorna Lamon profile image

      Lorna Lamon 

      11 months ago

      I was fascinated by this interesting article and will certainly try this technique.


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