dysregulated nervous system trauma

What does it mean to have a dysregulated nervous system? And what can you do about it so you start feeling better?

If you’re an empath or highly sensitive person (HSP) trying to grow a successful business, learning how to heal and regulate your nervous system will make ALL the difference.  If will affect your ability to cope with daily stressors, maintain energy levels, hold stronger boundaries, and remain more consistent.  As an empath or highly sensitive person we all have an overactive nervous system.  

The shame that many of us feel because we have grown up sensitive is one aspect of emotional dysregulation.


Dysregulated Nervous System

The main culprit in a dysregulated nervous system is TRAUMA

In fact, we all carry traumas in our bodies.  You may think that you have not experienced trauma but we all have.  We’ve just been conditioned to accept it as a part of life but it is an issue for us physically and emotionally.  Our entire society has come through the experience of COVID which I believe has activated us on a deep level.  

When trauma energy gets stuck in our body, it winds up contributing to a dysregulated central nervous system.  Through this dysregulation we become stuck.  Our energy becomes sluggish.

This can often happen when we’ve had too much going on, and therefore our system becomes overloaded. It becomes impossible to stay in a regulated place.  This is when we need dysregulated nervous system treatment.

When I am out in the world and there is a sudden loud noise I find my system going into a startle response.  In a regulated nervous system, we would have that moment of tension.  Then within a few minutes, we would find ourselves coming back to a soft body state.

Dysregulated Nervous System Treatment 

How do I know when my nervous system is dysregulated?

When we are not regulated, our system is stuck in fight, flight or freeze mode. For many of us we have learned how to live in this space.  This was 100% the case for me.  From the outside everything looked fine.  In fact people would even go so far as to call me high functioning.

Inside I was stuck in fight or flight.  Every time I encountered something that my nervous system considered a threat, I would find myself reacting.  This could be anything for a loud car horn, to lost keys, all moments that were certainly not five alarm moments in reality but due to the unresolved trauma my nervous system reacted. 

Most often this reaction caused me embarrassment and shame.   It would take me days to realize what had happened (sometimes even weeks).

From there I would feel like a total fraud and failure.

In a healthy nervous system we can easily shift from activated to calm once the threat is gone.  Since we live in such a stressed out society most of us never get that sense of release.  Our nervous system is stuck in that continual state of dysregulation. 

Sometimes it can feel like one foot on the gas at the same time as one foot is on the brake.  Have you ever this feeling?  

Dysregulated Stress Response means no middle ground.

One of the symptoms of a dysregulated nervous system is the feeling of overwhelm. As an empath or highly sensitive entrepreneur, this can come into play far too often when you aren’t careful.  I know I spent years in this space – and you can imagine when trying to get a business going this is not your best friend.

Adding one more thing to your to-do list feels like the straw that broke the camel’s back. Oh, my God, I can’t do it, it’s too much.

You might also feel like you’re on an emotional roller coaster all the time. Wild mood swings. I’m really happy. I’m really sad. It’s really awful. It’s really great.

That’s on the one side. It feels intense all the time. Ups and downs and NO middle ground.

This lack of middle ground creates shame spirals.  What’s wrong with me?  Why can’t I be normal?

Emotional Dysregulation Symptoms

An additional way dysregulation shows up in some of the population is as a functional freeze.  Those of us who have high functioning anxiety would fit into this category. This experience of numbing or freezing or feeling trapped.

We are still functioning, and in some cases quite well, but a huge piece of us is frozen inside. Stuck in our trauma. Looking for proof subconsciously, so we can stay safe.

Nervous system regulation is all about creating that sense of safety within ourselves.  

Even though the threat that created this original response in our bodies is long gone, the energy is still impacting us.  Our body is constantly remembering.  Our nervous system keeps responding to what it deemed as a threat.  It’s primary job is to keep us safe which means this dysregulated stress response can have long term implications on our health and wellness.



Heal a dysregulated nervous system treatment 

Tapping and coaching can be powerful tools to calm, regulate and heal your nervous system.  The gentle effectiveness and capacity to shift the energy in the now rather than having to go back and relive things is powerful.

The first thing I do when I start working with a new client is work to regulate the nervous system.  Without a regulated nervous system no other learning can take place.

It just physically isn’t possible to absorb new information and change long standing patterns when we have no blood in our forebrain.

This can take some retraining in the mind and the body.  Especially for those of us who have spent a lifetime pushing through.  That energy that got us to this current space is NOT the same energy that will change things.

How is EFT Tapping different than talk therapy

In talk therapy you are encouraged to share about the issues you are having.  What has brought you to where you are and what are you looking to change.

Sometimes going over the same thing can be highly retraumatizing.  Your nervous system is once again jarred.  Stuck in overactivity.  Sometimes just even speaking the truth can be really challenging.

It might not be to your benefit in this particular moment. Most of my clients are very surprised when I slow them down.  When I tell them their system isn’t quite ready for where they want to go right now.  There is often also a big sigh of relief.

Giving your body and nervous system the space it needs to calm and center itself is powerful.  This is how we rebuild the trust with ourselves.

Creating space around how healing could work without having to relive all of the pain

Emotional Freedom Technique

In the beginning, our sessions can often involve getting grounded and really bringing you back into your body.  When we are dysregulated most often it means we have found that sense of safety in our mind.

This may sound a little bit funny.  You may think, “of course I’m in my body”.

But are you really? Are you aware of what is going on around you or are you just getting through?

You may be functioning, getting through, and not actually be grounded in the moment. This often shows up as a continual state of exhaustion.  No matter how much sleep, or how healthy you are eating, or what you change in your life – you are continually feeling exhausted.

Relax and Regulate

You might be wondering right now if you are grounded?

Am I present? How much of what goes on in your day are you actually aware of?  That is my question for you.

You can heal your dysregulated nervous system

You can’t prevent traumatic experiences from happening. But you can learn how to regulate your nervous system so the trauma energy doesn’t stay trapped in your body and take its toll on you.

If you’re ready to cope better with daily stressors, maintain higher energy levels, create better boundaries, and stay more consistent in showing up for your growing business, check out the details of my one to one offerings here.  


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