Havening Technique therapy what is it?

This interview is about how Havening Technique therapy produces

highly effective results when treating anxiety based disorders

trauma, addictions & creating resilience.

It also includes a Havening demo that you can follow along with.

This interview is part of The Philosopher of Love show series hosted by

Nausheena Mahomed.

NM:  Thank you so much for joining me a

guest Stephen Travers, all the way from Dublin Ireland. Stephen is

considered as one of the world’s experts in the Havening technique therapy,

which is an alternative therapy to assist people to overcome dilemmas,

psychological dilemmas like anxiety, phobias and post-traumatic

stress. Stephen welcome, great to have you on the show and to have

this wonderful opportunity to learn about this miraculous new technique

called the Havening Techniques. It’s been a long wait but it’s a pleasure

to have you here today. Perhaps you can introduce yourself to our

audience, tell them more about who you are and how you’re involved in

therapy, and elaborate on how you stumbled across the Havening

Technique therapy ?


ST: Hi Nausheena. So I’ve been a therapist for over 15 years. I’m very

involved in personal and professional development  and I primarily

specialize in helping people overcome anxiety based disorders, which

are things like panic attacks, post-traumatic stress, fears, phobias. And

even issues like pathological emotions, unresolved anger, rage, guilt,

grief. And another part of my work which really ties in with the

Havening Technique therapy is building emotional resiliency, helping people

become more confident, to empower people to live a more fulfilling life,

and that all really ties in with what the Havening Technique therapy can do.

So I’ve trained in many different modalities, I’m one of these people–I love personal

development, I’ve trained in things like hypnotherapy, NLP,

psychoanalysis, hypnoanalysis, the tapping techniques and many

more. And I’m always on the look out for modalities that get great

results quickly, effectively and that actually last. And in my search for

that I came across the Havening technique therapy, and I have to say I’m hard

pressed to find modality that actually works better than Havening,

especially when it comes to helping people gain freedom from anxiety

based disorders, trauma and building emotional resiliency. So that’s

kind of like a summary of why I’m such a fan of the Havening

technique therapy


NM: Wow that sounds quite impressive, in terms of the Havening technique

therapy being able to be used across the spectrum of so many different kinds

of psychological challenges including personal development. Stephen

perhaps you can give us some kind of background in terms of why this

is considered a breakthrough in neuroscience, and what neuroscience

is all about? And how do you understand it as a professional in this

field in terms of why it’s proven to be so effective. From what I

understand you teach this technique to therapists across the world, and

you’ve assisted thousands of people to produce extraordinary results in

their lives.

havening technique therapy

What is the Havening Technique Therapy?

ST: So just to give you a bit of background about the

what is the Havening technique therapy.

It was developed by two American doctors, Doctor Ronald and Steven

Ruden. Both the doctors spent over a decade really researching and

understanding how trauma gets encoded in the brain and the body,

and how sensory touch can actually change what’s happening in the

brain, specifically in the limbic system and the amygdala. Havening

really came about from looking at therapies like Thought Field Therapy

and EFT, they’re the tapping techniques, I don’t know if your audience

or yourself are familiar with them. And the doctors got very curious

about why tapping acupressure points on your body would alleviate

things like phobias and fears which the tapping was doing, and the

doctors started using the tapping themselves and were getting some

very good results.

So to cut a long story short, that’s where the Havening Technique therapy really began.

And then developed into applying sensory touch on the arms, hands, and

face. And if you look at the brain as an electrical chemical organ which

it is, that’s the level Havening is working at. We’re producing something

called delta waves in the brain when we use sensory touch, and delta

waves occur in slow wave sleep, and when delta waves occur in the

brain you’re actually changing the chemistry of the brain, you’re

increasing neurotransmitters such as serotonin, oxytocin and GABA,

which are all the feel good relaxation chemicals. And one of the big

breakthroughs in Havening is that we’ve discovered that when

someone has a traumatic experience or a distressing event, that

something called AMPA receptors get encoded on neurons in the


And if you think of my hand as a neuron in the amygdala, these

receptors download all the stressing components of the trauma, so

everything that you’re seeing, hearing, emotionally and physically

feeling, so if your heart rate’s palpitating, you have a knot in your

stomach, you’re sweating, you’re feeling really hot, all of that data or

components are getting encoded into the amygdala and the body. So if

something reminds you of that stressing event consciously or

unconsciously, it triggers off the amygdala and creates that fight, flight

or freeze response. So what we can do with Havening and what we

teach therapists and coaches and even the general public, is to

pinpoint and identify where the symptoms of their anxiety, stress, fear

are actually coming from, so we’re really getting to the root cause of it

from a neurobiological level.

When we can pinpoint and identify the traumatic stress and apply the

Havening Technique therapy, it completely removes these receptors off and switches

off that fight flight or freeze response, and removes the emotional and

physiological components of the anxiety and the stress and frees the

person essentially from their trauma or anxiety based issue.


NM: It sounds pretty amazing Stephen. I’ve watched some of your videos,

the testimonials in particular from people that have been cured from

different phobias; there was a story where one of your patients was

cured from a phobia suffering from a fear of an escalator. So how

extreme can phobias be to be curable by the Havening technique therapy?



ST: Well I’m always careful when we use the word cure, but I suppose we

can use that word in the sense we can completely remove the issue.

So we can cure if you like most anxiety based disorders, sometimes

within minutes in many cases, and certainly within a couple of sessions

or so. The reason why is once again if you look at the phobia, say with

the escalator, there’s going to be an event in that persons past, at least

one that has caused that phobic reaction or response. And once again

we teach people how to pinpoint and identify through asking questions,

from watching the client, where that traumatic stress is, where that

event actually occurred under a timeline in their past. When we identify

that event we ask the client to close their eyes and go back to the

memory, now with traumatic stress these receptors will fire and the

person will actually start to feel uncomfortable when they think of the


So we’ll ask them on a scale of zero to ten, ten being very distressed,

zero being calm, how uncomfortable do you feel. If it’s a trauma they’re

going to feel at least a six or higher on the scale, so at that point the

receptors are activated, and there’s something called a phosphate

molecule that’s holding those receptors there that becomes exposed

when we trigger off the trauma as the receptors fire off and this

molecule is exposed. When we apply the Havening touch it produces

delta waves, and that’s your brain waves that go into the neurons with

these receptors. And as these delta waves enter they create a

chemical called calcineurin inside the neurons where these AMPA

receptors are, and this calcineurin dephosphorylates, which is a fancy

neuro-scientific word which really means it unglues or it delinks those

receptors off the neurons, and they recycle back into the neurons and

now they’re completely cleared and gone permanently.

So what happens during a treatment is you’ll notice the person starts

dropping down that scale to a five, a three, down to a zero after a few

rounds of the Havening Technique therapy, and they’ll start feeling much calmer,

relaxed and at ease and completely neutral. We can then ask the client to go

back to that memory after the treatment a few minutes later to try and

access the emotional distress again, the knot in the stomach, maybe

the heart palpitating, the fear, the anxiety, the stress. And what you’ll

find is that all those components of the trauma are completely gone,

the client will just be sitting there feeling completely relaxed, completely

calm, completely at ease. Even the memory will seem more distant and

further away if they’re looking from the outside in, or it will seem blurrier

or fuzzy.

So the actual cognitive components of the memory, what they see,

what they hear, will significantly change and they can’t access that

emotional charge anymore. So we then go back say onto the escalator

again, or the thing that was making them feel phobic, because those

AMPA receptors are now gone that stimuli of the escalator or whatever

the phobia was it can’t trigger off the amygdala, those receptors can’t

fire anymore because they’re now completely gone.


NM:                 So the cure is sustainable in the long term?


ST:                 Yes.


NM:                 Does the patient suffer from relapse or anything of the sort ever again,

or is it permanently eradicated, the emotional trigger?


ST:                 If it’s a phobia where say with the escalator or maybe a flying phobia or

even a spider phobia, if there was just one or two events that caused it

and we’re Havening it, yes it will be completely gone, the probability is

extremely high it would remain completely gone.


NM: It’s really amazing what you’re sharing with me because as you know

I’m a Reiki master, and we use touch as well in our self-healing

therapy, and also when you’re engaging with clients and when you are

trying to heal them from whatever stresses they are going through. It’s

a similar kind of logic where you go into a relaxation state and things

do come up from the past, and you’ve got to relive that entire

experience, but there are instances where it takes some time for a

person to work through the emotional triggers. So what you’re saying is

here’s a technique using touch that can have instantaneous results, so

it brings about instantaneous results, which is absolutely brilliant.

I want to talk to you Stephen about anxiety, perhaps if you could define

anxiety, is it a psychological dilemma? To what degree is it a

psychological dilemma? All of us as ordinary people should be

conscious in terms of how it can inhibit us in our lives, just so that we

understand what anxiety is. Because sometimes we say we’re feeling

anxious or we’re suffering from some kind of anxiety, be it work related

or related to your personal life or relationship issues, but we don’t really

understand what anxiety is. Perhaps you can give us some more

concrete definitions so we can identify what anxiety is as it appears in

our lives.


ST:  Well you could say from a neurobiological perspective that all anxiety

based disorders are the consequences of unresolved past traumatic

stress, first of all. So you could say that–especially if it’s an anxiety

based disorder or issue, that it’s really a symptom or consequence of

things that have happened in the past. Now of course we can feel

stress day-to-day and we can feel anxious and sometimes that’s a

good thing. We talk about eustress and distress, so eustress is

generally when we’re setting goals and challenges for ourselves that

we want to achieve, that’s a positive stress, it gives us motivation, it

helps us get things done, so we’re actually moving towards what we

want. And obviously distress is when you’re having symptoms and

feelings which you don’t want, which are uncomfortable, which are

counterproductive, so you can look at it that way.

We also talk about the landscape of your brain, the neurochemical

landscape of your brain, and having a vulnerable neurochemical

landscape and a resilient neurochemical landscape. People who have

unresolved trauma in their past tend to have a more vulnerable

neurochemical landscape, which means they’re more prone to

suffering and developing anxiety based issues. That’s why it’s so

important to resolve those issues in the past, because if you don’t

you’re probably going to keep suffering and even suffering more.

Especially when life’s challenges do come along your ability to deal

with them is going to be compromised and diminished, because you

don’t have that resiliency developed. That’s why two people can

experience the same event and one person becomes traumatized and

one of them doesn’t, it’s because they have different neurochemical



NM:  And can Havening Technique therapy assist people with let’s say a poor resiliency

when it comes to dealing with life’s challenges? People who are more prone to

get anxious because they simply don’t have coping mechanisms at

their disposal, because like you say it’s how they are structured, it’s

their personality.


ST: Yes, when you start removing and clearing up the past issues that are

causing anxiety in the present, immediately you’re beginning to

develop a more resilient neurochemical landscape. You’re changing

the landscape of the brain each time you use Havening on yourself,

you’re increasing serotonin, oxytocin, GABA, you’re reducing cortisol

and adrenalin. If you’re working with traumatic memories and emotions

you’re clearing off these AMPA receptors off the amygdala, it’s like

you’re cleaning up the brain. If you think of the brain like a garden, like

a neural garden you could say, a vulnerable landscape is full of weeds

and debris; it’s like a neglected garden. And when we’re moving and

clearing the traumas we’re actually cleaning up the landscape, we’re

pulling out the weeds, we’re clearing up the soil. And then we’ve got

Havening techniques where we can actually plant new ideas, install

new positive emotions, we can start planting seeds, flowers, trees in

that landscape if you like to grow and develop.


NM: I like how you explain–using that metaphor in terms of think of your

brain as a garden. Similarly when we use Reiki as a form of self-

healing it’s about cleaning up your energy space, and it’s about

planting, getting rid of that and making space for newness, and to

replenish yourself from negative energy so to speak, so I really

appreciate your metaphor and how you’ve described that. How intense

is the training for someone to use the Havening technique therapy, and can we

actually use it like we do in Reiki? Can we use it to heal ourselves once

we’ve mastered the Havening technique therapy, or is it only limited to



ST: Well I’ve trained hundreds of people in Havening Technique therapy

at this point, & in the last seven, eight years over 5,000 sessions of Havening,

& most of them have obviously been with clients one-to-one, the general

public. So we do teach our clients how to use Havening as a self-

empowerment tool to maintain and build upon the positive results we

get with them in sessions, but also to help to prevent future

traumatization. So yes when you learn how to use Havening it’s

actually quite simple to apply, we might even do a bit of it today just to

give people watching a sense of applying the sensory touch and how it

feels, so we’ll do a wee bit of that as well. So yes anyone can learn

Havening Technique therapy, in the two day training, obviously we do have a lot of

therapists coming to it and coaches, but if you did want to become a

certified practitioner in Havening Technique therapy you are welcome to attend.

But we would talk to you first of all, if you’ve no experience in therapy

we’d do a mini interview if you like just to make sure the training is the

right fit for you. Because in the training we do obviously go into the

neuroscience but it’s very interactive, we do live demos for people in

the group where we’re working with real trauma, so we’re really

showing how powerful Havening Technique therapy is through the demos.

Then you break up into groups of three in the training with a facilitator, and you use the

techniques you’re learning, once again working on real issues. So over

those two days obviously you’re learning, discovering how to use

Havening Technique therapy, but it’s also an opportunity if you wish to clear up a lot of

your own unresolved issues, so there’s a dual benefit that way,

especially for therapists, because they can clean up a lot of their own

issues then become certified and start helping other people as well.


NM:So let’s say someone who understands the Havening Technique therapy as an

individual who’s not a therapist, and just experienced something that

has caused some anxiety or a little bit of emotional trauma, can they

use the Havening Technique therapy almost immediately in the situation that

they find themselves in if they feel anxious and they really need to cope

with the situation, can they apply it immediately?


ST:  Yes, we sometimes call it CPR for the amygdala. So what we can do

right now with everyone watching and yourself, we can do a bit of

Havening Technique therapy, just to give people a taste and experience of what it actually

feels like. Now we’re not going to work with any serious trauma. Now

by the way just before we do this, we are going to use some distraction

techniques. When we do Havening Technique therapy we do use distraction, so when

we’re working with a traumatic memory or even something stressful we

will activate the feeling or the amygdala if you like, then we’ll take the

person away from it, we’ll give them an escape. And that’s what

Havening means, bringing you to a safe place, bringing you to a safe

haven. The scientific name for Havening Technique therapy

is amygdala depotentiation treatment.


NM: Okay.

Havening Technique Therapy Demo

ST:  So it’s a bit of a mouthful, but Havening has stuck, that idea we’re

bringing you to a safe place, taking you to safety. In the distractions

we’ll keep them as neutral as possible, so I’ll ask people to imagine

walking on a beach, taking 20 steps, we’re going to hum a couple of

songs, maybe like Jingle Bells, Happy Birthday. And the distraction

helps to displace the trauma or the stressful thought out of your

working memory. I don’t want to get too technical about it but that’s

why we’re doing the distraction, because it can seem a bit strange if

you don’t understand why we’re doing it. But essentially we’re giving

you an escape from what you were thinking about, what was stressing

you, so don’t take anything too serious. But what I’d like everyone to

do, and you’re going to watch and follow me at the beginning as well, is

just to close your eyes for a moment, if you’d like to do it as well

Nausheena and everyone watching.

And just take a moment to focus on your breath, the gentle rise and fall

of your breathing. And as you sit there and hear my voice and even the

sounds around you, I’d like to think about something that may be

stressing you or has been stressing you over the last few days, even

the last few weeks or month or two. Something that’s preoccupying

your mind a bit, that’s making you feel uncomfortable, and just think

about it in your mind, just picture it, think about it and notice how it

makes you feel. Think about what’s making you feel most

uncomfortable, if you like the most stressing part of the issue, and just

in your mind scale it on a scale of zero to ten, ten is very

uncomfortable, very distressed, and zero’s calm and neutral. So think

of the most uncomfortable part of it and give it a number right now,

then open up your eyes, everyone open up your eyes, look at me, clear

your mind.

And put one hand here and one hand here on your shoulders, just

across your body, and begin very gently stroking, think if you were

comforting a child, stroking from the top of your shoulders all the way

down to your elbows, nice and gentle. Just slow it down a wee bit,

about three to four seconds per stroke, and only do it downwards from

the top of your shoulders all the way down to the elbows. Good, but

keep stroking and close your eyes, and imagine walking out onto a

beautiful beach on a bright summer day. Picture a bright blue sky,

golden yellow sand, imagine the sound of the waves lapping in against

the shore, even the smell of the salty fresh sea air. Think of a lovely

memory or a time when you walking along a beach like this, and with

every step you imagine taking count out loud from one to twenty with

every step with me. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. Really visualize and imagine

walking on this beautiful beach, the colours, the sounds and the feeling

of being by the beach. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18. 19. 20.


Now keep stroking and let’s sing Jingle Bells for the fun of it or you can

hum it, I’ll sing it and just sing it along with me. ‘Jingle bells, jingle bells,

jingle all the way, oh what fun it is to ride on a one horse open sleigh,

oh jingle bells, jingle bells, jingle all the way, oh what fun it is to ride in

a one horse open sleigh. Dashing through the snow, on a one horse

open sleigh, over the fields we go, laughing all the way, [bells on

bobtails ring], making spirits bright [what fun it is to ride and sing a

sleighing song tonight]’. Good keep stroking, and just take in a slow

and gentle breath. Keep stroking, focusing on that calming sensory

touch, that’s it, from the top of the shoulders all the way down to the

elbows, like you’re gently massaging yourself, hugging yourself. And

then just ask yourself on a scale of ten to zero what number comes to

mind now, how far down the scale are you, just go with whatever

number comes to mind.

Then look at me and let’s do some palm Havening. The palm

Havening’s where we gently massage the palms of the hands, like

you’re gently washing your hands, focusing only on the palms of the

hands, because there’s all these receptors in your skin that you’re

stimulating through this gentle sensory touch. Good, you can add in

some circular motions, then close your eyes, we’re going to do a bit

more distraction. This time we’re going to count backwards from 30

down to zero out loud in twos together everyone. So I’ll start off and

just count along with me, 30. 28. 26. 24. 22. 20. 18. 16. Really visualize

the numbers in your mind. 14. 12. Relaxing with every number. 10. 8.

  1. 4. 2. 0. Very good, now I’d just like you to move to your face for a

moment, and let’s do some face Havening, so you get to experience

what it’s like to do the face. Now just notice the differences between

the three areas from arms to hands to face, taking in a slow gentle


Now this time we’re going to sing Row Your Boat together, ‘row, row,

row your boat gently down the stream, merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily,

life is but a dream. Row, row, row your boat gently down the stream,

merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily, life is but a dream. Row, row, row your

boat gently down the stream, merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily, life is but

a dream’. Very good, just keep stroking, and just notice that sensory

feeling of the relaxing gentle touch around your forehead and your

cheeks, as if you’re just gently caressing and massaging your face.

The face actually produces the highest amplitudes of delta waves in

the brain, 90 times more than resting state, the arms do 20 times more

delta, and the hands do five times more delta. Good, now give yourself

a number on a scale of ten to zero, just notice what number comes to

mind now. Good, and then we’re just going to do one more quick

round, and let’s just go back down to the arms.

If you look at me again stroke from the top of the shoulders all the way

down to the elbows, and close your eyes, and this time imagine there’s

a beautiful staircase in front of you of 20 steps. It could be a staircase

in a five star hotel or maybe an old castle, think of a beautiful staircase,

or it could even be quite a simple staircase, whatever feels right for

you, whatever’s comfortable. And imagine walking up the staircase

now, and with every step you take it causes you to relax, and count up

from one to 20 with every step you take starting at 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8.

  1. 10. 11. 12. Keep stroking, that’s it. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18. 19. 20.

And then for the fun of it everyone can sing Happy Birthday, you can

sing it to me if you wish, ‘Happy Birthday to you, Happy Birthday to

you, close your eyes, Happy Birthday dear Stephen, Happy Birthday to

you’. Good and just keep stroking, we’re nearly at the end, take in a

slow gentle breath. Good, and when you’re ready you can gently open

up your eyes everyone, take a little stretch if you wish, and just notice

how you feel.


NM: It feels great, it’s like totally forgotten whatever was bothering me.


ST:  Yes so that’s we use the distraction, it displaces the traumatic memory

or distressed memory out of your working memory, and then you’re

giving it an opportunity then just to let the delta waves go in and do the

de-encoding. And you’ll often find that people will feel maybe a little

spacy, a bit lighter, calmer, some people feel a bit sleepy because of all

the delta, and even as you said because I know you do the–



NM: I feel happy. Actually I feel a little bit more joyful than I did when I was

thinking about the issue, it’s kind of difficult to actually think about the

issue now because I feel a lot more joyful, that’s how I could describe

Because there was something bothering me that happened a few

days ago so it was still sitting with me this morning, a very

uncomfortable feeling.


ST:  Where were you feeling the feeling in your body? Did you have a

sense–like you know sometimes you feel a heaviness in the chest or in

the stomach or even just a tension, did you feel it anywhere at the

beginning there?


NM:                 Yeah I tend to get all knotted up in my tummy.


ST:                 Okay. What number came to mind at the beginning Nausheena?

Because I was just going to do a quick debrief with you.


NM:                 Sure. So the first number that came up was six.


ST:                 Okay, close your eyes for a moment, just close your eyes for a

moment, and go back to what you were thinking about that was at a

six, and let’s just see what the difference is now when you think of it

and how you feel. Just take a moment to scan the thought and most

importantly how you’re feeling right now, what’s the difference? Take

your time.


NM: It’s totally disappeared, I don’t feel it in my body, I don’t feel anxious,

honestly I don’t feel it, it’s hard to actually think about it now.


ST: Good.


NM: It kind of seems like a distant memory, I don’t know what that feels like

anymore to be quite honest.


ST: Yeah. So what we’ve done is we’ve delinked the emotional charge or

feeling from the thought or memory.


NM: That’s amazing, it really is amazing, I’m not just saying this because

we’re doing this little video, but it really did work, it’s kind of difficult to

actually even feel what I was feeling earlier.


ST: Yes, and that’s why going back to your original question at the

beginning what makes Havening Technique therapy ground-breaking,

well this is a taste of what makes it ground breaking, this is how effective

it can be, and this is just a spontaneous little demo I’ve done.


NM:  It was actually quite a bit of a tense weekend because of the situation

which wasn’t mine, but I actually feel as if–I feel joyful, I feel lighter.


ST: Great.


NM: I feel lighter, I feel joyful as if it didn’t even happen kind of thing.


ST:  And that took us–I was timing it there, we did about seven minutes, just

under seven minutes of Havening Technique therapy. By the way if any of your audience

are watching do feel free to maybe comment how you got on there in

the chat or comments, and if you have any questions feel free to

contact myself or Nausheena as well. Now obviously Nausheena when

we’re working with clients privately one-to-one we would do more of a

history intake where we’re really going much deeper, where we’re

looking at not just maybe a symptom, even though Havening Technique therapy

can work really well in symptoms. We’re going deeper to really get to the root

cause or causes of some of the presenting problems.


NM: That’s great.


ST:  And it would be a slightly longer approach, I generally would do a four

session program approach with most people, because it’s not just

about clearing the trauma. We also have techniques that build

resiliency and confidence where we can start going into the future,

imagining ourselves feeling really good and resilient and being at our

best. Because you talked to me about personal development, what

stops people from developing in life or being at their best is unresolved

trauma, stress and issues, it’s like emotional baggage they’re carrying.

And if we can free them from that it’s literally freeing them to be the

best that they can be and fulfill their potential.


NM: I love what I’ve experienced now with you Stephen, it’s really great. I

think for me I’m sure people can relate to this, is I have resiliency, so

I’m a strong willed person, I have resiliency. But sometimes like the

issue that came up this weekend tends to come up every now and

then, I wouldn’t say it’s anxiety, it wasn’t my issue it was somebody

else’s issue that I was dealing with, but it caused me a great amount of

discomfort personally. It’s like those kinds of incidents for resilient

people I think that can use this technique to get rid of that residual

feeling that still lingers, those lingering negative feelings that stay with

you. Or let’s say you got into an argument with someone and you

weren’t feeling good about it for the rest of the day, and you’re a

resilient person like myself, you know sometimes we get into

disagreements with people and we need to brush off the lingering

effects of that unpleasantness so to speak. So I think this kind of

technique can assist, because actually I feel so much lighter and

joyous and it’s very liberating, it’s liberating.


ST: And once you learn how to use Havening Technique therapy, even if you go to see

someone, a therapist or someone who uses this, once you learn how to

use it and when other things happen in life you don’t have to suffer for

too long if you wish, you can use this immediately and within minutes it

can significantly change how you’re feeling. And the thing is it’s like

mental emotional hygiene, instead of letting things build up and

accumulate like lots of stressors overtime, we’re down regulating that

stress all the time within us by using something like Havening Technique therapy.

So it’s excellent for self-care, for keeping your mental and emotional health in

equilibrium, and to keep that resiliency strong and high.


NM:  May I ask you from a neuroscientific perspective, why do we target

these specific areas when we are doing the self-Havening technique therapy

like the arms, I think we did the face as well, why these specific areas



ST:                 Well a couple of things. Think of it this way, when we were actually

born as babies we come out and we cry, we don’t want to be

abandoned, it’s innate, we cry, oxytocin is produced in our mothers

brains to bond with us. And that’s really one of our first experiences in

life is being put into our mothers arms and held and cuddled, so that

sensory touch is hardwired, that extra sensory association of when

you’re stroked around your arms and your head as a baby and your

hands, that’s the main form of communication is touch. So that’s

hardwired into our system where there’s association of safety, feeling

loved, feeling cared for. From a very neuroscientific perspective, Doctor

Ruden looked after work of a neuroscientific researcher called Mel

Harper who was studying EMDR. And he was trying to figure out what

was making things like EMDR work, and he was putting vibrating pads

on people’s hands to see the effect of vibration on the hands and

different parts of the body. And through that work what we discovered

is the arms; the hands and the face produce the highest amount of

delta waves in the brain, the highest amplitude of delta. We know the

back of the hands don’t really do any delta but the palms do.


NM: Okay.


ST: So we try different parts of the body and these are the three hot spots,

arms hands and face that produce the most delta waves.


NM: That’s amazing. Again in Reiki therapy we use the palms of our hands

for healing and for touching because it’s hands-on healing, and it’s also

very comforting. It’s amazing the power of human touch, what we can

achieve with human touch to heal ourselves and others.


ST: But this is it, touch is being used, even if you go all the way back to the

time of Jesus and people like that, the laying of the hands and healing

people through touch. What Havening Technique therapy has given us I suppose in the

work of the doctors is it’s really giving us the neuroscience of why this

actually works, so we can actually explain from that neuroscientific

perspective what’s actually happening in the brain and the body when

we’re using touch. So it’s just great that we have all this science now

backing many of the healing therapies out there and why they’re



NM: That’s pretty amazing. And if I have to think back to the founder of

Reiki, Usui Sensei who’s the founder of Reiki using hands-on healing,

and he even said to a large degree that its miraculous using touch to

heal, and science will catch up with it in some time to come. Science

will catch up with the understanding of why touch is so powerful when it

comes to healing, and I suppose in those days it was all a mystery and

it was a spiritual experience, and to a large degree Reiki is because it’s

about the body mind soul connecting as well. But I suppose thanks to

neuroscience and the advancement that we’ve made in science we can

understand this miracle, so it’s becoming demystified to a large degree

as well.


ST:  Yes and we have a lot of medical doctors, psychologists and stuff

coming through the training now, because they really like the whole

neuroscientific model behind Havening Technique therapy, it makes sense to them, and

they’ve got that–[Crosstalk].


NM: I think we want to make sense, as human beings we have a curious

mind and we like to make sense, and I think it’s possible to make

sense of most things in life and most treatments. So thank you so

much for this wonderful session, it was very insightful, and thank you

for making me feel more joyous and liberating me from the little anxiety

that I was carrying with me before having this conversation with you.

And it really was a genuine experience, it’s hard to remember exactly

what the feeling was now.


ST:  Yeah, and as I said if some of your audience would like to share their

experience of the taster as well feel free to comment. Oh and one last

thing I do want to mention, is I am running a two day online Havening Training

on the 19th and 20th of March online, so you can attend from

anywhere in the world, obviously including South Africa. It’s from

9:00am to 5:30pm each day, so South Africa that would be from

11:00am till 7:00pm. If you go to my website there’s a link, maybe we

can put up the link later. You can register there and there’s lots of

information there and videos as well and reviews from other people

who have done it, and if you have any questions just contact me and

reach out.


NM:  Stephen thank you that sounds fantastic. Now this two day online

program is it open to anyone or just to therapists in particular?


ST:  Mostly we have therapists and coaches coming to it, and anyone who’s

just really interested in personal development, you know they mightn’t

be very experienced working with clients; it is open to them as well, just

send me an email telling me why you’d like to do this training and we

can make a decision from there. But the training is generally open to

everyone, because part of our mission is to put Havening Technique therapy into the

hands of everyone in the world, it’s just not reserved for a special group

of therapists or people, it’s for everyone. Because touch is one of the

most natural things that we all do so we can all benefit from this.


NM: Well thank you very much; it was lovely learning the Havening technique

therapy which I will be using again, so thank you for sharing that. And what I

will be doing is when I’m sharing this video Stephen I will tag you in it,

and if you could in the comments put in the website address where

people can find your upcoming online program to register for that.


ST:                 That’s great, yes, will do that. Thank you Nausheena, it was a



NM:                 Thank you everyone for joining us, have a beautiful day, you too

Stephen, thank you.


ST:                 Yeah have a great day everyone, thank you.


NM:                 Thank you.


ST:                 Bye.

Special thanks to the interviewer Nausheena Mahomed. See her Facebook page

for more information https://www.facebook.com/heartSoulconnection

Our Hypnotherapist Dublin services are also now available online via Zoom sessions.

For a free phone consultation email your name & number to stephen@stravershypnosis.com

Or call 01 484 7834 or 086 178 6809