Dr. Tian Dayton On Emotional Sobriety
According to Dr. Dayton, emotions are processed by the limbic brain system- our “emotional brain”. Our cortex- "thinking brain", tends to shut down when we get scared but our emotional or limbic brain keeps operating. The emotional "animal" brain takes over. In this moment we can lose our ability think clearly, to reflect on and make sense out of what we're feeling. It's nature's way of keeping protecting us by switching into survival mode.
The child is dependent on their parent to act as an external regulator because their internal regulators aren't fully developed until they are twelve or so. The small child is particularly vulnerable to emotional and psychological damage when the home is chaotic. If the parent is a victimizer or abuser, the child also loses access to their source of comfort and regulation.
Dr. Dayton believes if we didn't learn adequate skills of self regulation in childhood, we can learn them in adulthood. It is something we can train ourselves to do.
Dayton believes, to inscribe new hardwiring into our neural networks we must do more than just talk. We need to spend time in the presence of others who are experiencing balance and pleasure in their lives. To heal, we need to develop new relationships and learn the skills of limbic regulation in therapy, hobby groups, faith institutions, twelve step rooms and healthy lifestyle activities.
To use a "Dog Whisperer" analogy, we need to become part of a balanced pack. Then we learn to become balanced.
For more info. visit emotionalsobriety.info and tiandayton.com
Check out the Orange County ACA website at: Orange County Adult Children