Okay, so it’s the number one search on YouTube right now and seems to be the top priority on every news channel, podcast, and family dinner discussion. I’m not talking about the global pandemic, nor am I speaking about the Russian-Ukrainian War. What I’m referring to is the moment that captured global attention on the world’s largest stage – ‘Slapgate’, as they now call it. The moment Will Smith walked onto the Oscars stage and smacked comedian, Chris Rock, for making a joke about his wife, Jada Pinkett Smith.
Celebrity Therapy: Exploring Healing and Re-Programming for Public Figures
I can’t believe we are actually discussing this, but before you shrug this article off as yet another sensationalist piece, I have something quite different to offer. A perspective that has largely been missing from public discourse, and that is a discussion centered around healing, re-programming, and a healthy way forward. So, if you’re the kind of person who would like to use this moment as an opportunity for learning and growth, this read is going to be right up your alley!
Celebrities are turning to EMDR therapy to address their traumas and promote personal growth. When Will Smith got onto the stage and assaulted his contemporary, I saw something unfold that I am all too familiar with. It’s no secret that Will Smith has a long history of childhood trauma including growing up with domestic abuse and addiction in the household. Many have identified this as the source of his impulsive behaviour, so that’s nothing new. But what if we take this chance to think about how things might have gone differently if Smith had done the important work of identifying his triggers and re-associating them with neutral behaviours?
A study by Solomon and Oren explains that EMDR “sees dysfunctionally stored memories as the core element of the development of psychopathology. In its view of memory, it integrates information that is sensory, cognitive, emotional, and somatic in nature.” They go on to state that “The EMDR protocol looks at past events that formed the presented problem, at the present situations where the problem is experienced, and at the way the client would like to deal with future challenges”.
Essentially, our memories of past experiences are all associated with present-day behaviours. That’s right, your present is an amalgamation of your past, your DNA, and your experiences. Epigenetic discoveries tell us that we can even inherit memories, that these experiences get passed down through generations, some creating lineages of Harvard scholars, descendants of alcoholics, and patterns replicated throughout, whether positive, neutral, or negative. So before you go producing research papers to your elders based on your issues, remember your successes that have arisen and that you don’t know which is nature and which is nurture and there is hope.
Unlocking Emotional Healing: Celebrity-Mind-Therapy Through EMDR
For some, this might translate as overwhelming fear and the feeling of being paralyzed in the face of a big decision, an intimidating task, or a situation that reminds us of a bad experience. For others, it translates as aggression and anger. EMDR therapy gets to the root of these past traumas, bad experiences, blocking beliefs, and regrettable decisions and reprograms the brain to associate different behaviours with these memories
In Joan Lovett’s book, Small Wonders: Healing Childhood Trauma with EMDR, she defines Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing as “a comprehensive method of psychotherapy addressing problems that are based on earlier life experiences”.
If we really think about it, most celebrities grow up in dysfunctional environments, facing challenges that are completely out of the norm, and have to live up to the expectations of not only their families but the global community too. Whether you’re using this for trauma or performance enhancement, either way, I guarantee you have something you would love to change, because the most successful people are the ones who continue their personal development journey on a daily basis.
This is why a growing number of celebrities and public figures, including Prince Harry, Evan Rachel Wood, Whitney Cummings, Sandra Bullock, Jameela Jamil, and Paris Jackson have turned to EMDR. An effective therapy for celebrities and anyone wanting to address their childhood experiences and reset the brain to respond to stressful situations in a healthy, productive manner. The practice of celebrity therapy with EMDR is extensive, but due to confidentiality, we are only now learning the full extent of its widespread use among celebrities in Hollywood.
Paris Jackson has spoken about using EMDR therapy to help her deal with what she describes as “audio hallucinations” – hearing phantom camera clicks that lead to intense paranoia. Similarly, Prince Harry speaks about the anxiety he is faced with when visiting the city of London as the city reminds him of his mother’s death. In his documentary, The Me You Can’t See, we watch him in an EMDR session where he works through the protocol with his therapist.
Celebrity Therapy: Rapid Transformation for High-Profile Individuals
So what do a group of celebrities and Will Smith’s ‘Slapgate’ scandal have to do with us? Well, it’s really about taking the opportunity to recognize that we all have bad experiences or traumas in our past that affect our behavior today. As ambitious business people and leaders in our workplace and family lives, we too are called to address our thought patterns and behaviors so that we can harness our full potential where it matters most.
While Will might have avoided formal charges, the results of his behaviour were catastrophic for his career. The same applies to us when we are not able to apply ourselves fully in the workplace or, worse yet, make impulsive decisions that land us in the hot seat.
The reality is, that for many, we simply do not have years, months, or even weeks to spend on long therapy sessions or a year’s worth of coaching with limited observable outcomes. This is where EMDR intensives come in. At tidylodge, we specialize in intensive EMDR Therapy, where the results of a year’s worth of therapy or coaching can be achieved in a week or weekend. During an EMDR intensive, our certified Advanced EMDR therapist and founder uses science-backed methods to work with the central nervous system, addressing harmful behaviors and parts of self, at a neurobiological level. The evidence-based results are usually transformational.