Bob Van Oosterhout

Additional Information about Components of the Recovery Process
Support Opportunity & Service Circles - A Neigborhood Organizing Tool
About Bob (...What about Bob?)
Anger and Impulse Control
Anxiety, Depression, PTSD
Behavioral Health Integration with Primary Care
Bring Truth to Fear: We CAN Work Together
Hard Times Cafe Model of Empowerment
Links to Videos for Online Stress Management at LCC
Managing Chronic Pain and Headaches
Mental Health
Moral Philosophy
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
Practical Psychology: What Works and Makes Sense
Problem Solving - Responding Effectively to Problems
Slow Down and Lighten Up
Spiritual Writing
Stress Management
What Works
Resume/Curriculum Vitae
Comments, Suggestions, Discussion

Additional Information about Components of the Recovery Process
Restoring balance to the autonomic nervous system  
This is accomplished by establishing a precise but effortless rhythmic movement of the diaphragm through relaxed breathing.  This stimulates the right vagus nerve where it passes through the esophageal hiatus, which appears to activate the parasympathetic nervous system.  The rhythm that works is three to four seconds on the inhale and three to four seconds on the exhale without pause or breath holding. 
Resolving physical patterns of tension that restrict emotion
This is accomplished by pointing out patterns of tension that arise when a person is resisting emotion and describing how to restore the body to a neutral position.

Create conditions where painful emotions can be experienced without resistance
Practitioners briefly experience similar emotions to those who are suffering from PTSD during the treatment process.  If the practitioner resists that emotion, the person suffering from PTSD will do the same and symptoms will persist or worsen.  To be effective, helpers must be able to fully experience painful emotions without muscle tension or breath holding. (This only lasts seconds because focus is shifted to the needs of the person in recovery.) Explaining the nature of emotion and describing them as universal human experiences facilitates acceptance.

Developing control over thoughts and memories
Since talking and/or thinking about past trauma stimulates new emotion, it is very important to develop the skills and awareness that allow one to experience emotion without dwelling on it.  Repeatedly labeling all such emotional experiences as “a normal response to past trauma” breaks patterns of thinking that tend to perpetuate emotional suffering.  Regular practice of techniques such as “thought focusing” and meditation are very helpful in this process. 

Videos on Diaphragmatic Breathing, Resolving Problems with Natural Rhythmic Breathing, Grounding, Identifying Common Patterns of Tension, How to Clear your Mind, Meditation, Understanding Emotion, Depression, and Understanding PTSD found under the Links to Videos for Online Stress Management at LCC describe these processes in detail.