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The Power of Healing is in Your Hands

Updated: Jul 31, 2023

Hilary Russo talks to us about the power of Havening!

Your amygdala loves to freak out. She does. Yes, it is a she. I’ve met her, and her name is “Amy.” In the Havening world, we call her that because she is many things. Amy is a warrior who wants to stand up for herself. But she is also a scared child that needs protection. And whatever the situation, when Amy feels threatened, she must be reminded of something important. All is well, and you are safe here, in your haven. Enter: Havening Techniques. This neuroscience-based approach uses touch and pleasant distraction to rapidly alter your thoughts, moods, behaviors, and habits (within minutes, really) and permanently. What happens next is like “CPR for the Amygdala®.”

Your brain releases the happy chemicals, including oxytocin (love hormone), serotonin, dopamine, and GABA, and then enters a Delta Wave sleep state. Trying to find the calm in the chaos is like hitting a traffic light that’s red and putting the pedal to the metal as if it were green. You just can’t do both at the same time, and the outcome likely won’t work in your favor. You need to self-regulate and find that sweet spot where you’re in the parasympathetic nervous system. And that’s where Havening can be helpful for everyday upsets like stress, anxiety, lack of focus, and sleep to deep-rooted traumas (when working with a certified practitioner) like PTSD, panic attacks, addictions, grief, and fears. There really is no downside to how this beautiful modality can set you free and help you find your clarity, confidence, and calm. It’s also a wonderful (SEL) social and emotional learning tool for children at any stage. The best part of this approach is that you can self-apply to self-soothe for self-care with Self-Havening when it comes to life’s disturbances. And here’s how it’s done. The Havening Touch is three simple moves. This video demonstrates more about how it works. The movement is like you are washing your hands, giving yourself a hug (arms crossed and gently stroking from shoulder to elbow), or lightly caressing your face.

When you close your eyes and pair the touch (any or all three) with a pleasant thought (it can be a person, place, experience, or even a song), you are letting Amy know, “I’ve got you,” and you’ll likely feel lighter, calmer and more at peace in minutes. If you feel like you need more support with traumas or deeper-rooted upsets that may be holding you back and weighing you down, it’s always best to work with a trusted and trauma-informed practitioner who can facilitate a session and work with you through the process. Havening has the power to turn your traumas into triumphs and help you heal from within. Give yourself the gift of active emotional well-being by putting the healing in your own hands. It’s the Healing, Understanding, and Gratitude that your mind and body need to be kind to the mind.

Check out our CTD podcast interview with Hilary for a deeper dive here.


Hilary Russo, is The HIListically Speaking® Health Coach. She is one of the first 150 Certified Havening Techniques Practitioners in the United States and 500 in the world of, only 800 worldwide. Hilary studied directly under the developing doctors of Havening, who have called her a “pioneer” in the field working with children, as well as purpose driven C-Suites execs to Metropolitan Opera singers and media professionals in the field of secondary traumatic stress. Trauma informed, her HUG it Out™ program is designed to mirror back what you don’t see in yourself with neuroscience based tools that help you heal from within. She’s also a Certified Integrative Nutrition Holistic Health Coach, certified Hypnotherapist and award-winning multimedia host/journalist and international speaker focusing on health and wellness. Hilary is also a college professor at St John’s University in NYC. Join Hilary’s HUG it Out Collective on Facebook. You can also find Hilary at the mic hosting the successful HIListically Speaking Podcast: empowering conversations of trauma to triumph through health healing and humor.

If you’re interested in learning more about Havening, set up a complimentary HUG it Out session today to see if Havening is right for you! Connect with Hilary on all social media at @hilaryrusso.

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