OYM Melissa Hiemann | Root Cause Therapy

 

Healing begins when you embrace your inner child and offer them the love and compassion they’ve always deserved. In this episode, Melissa Hiemann discusses the art of healing from the deep-rooted effects of trauma. Join us as she explores holistic methods and practices to address emotional wounds, both big and small. As a passionate advocate for trauma healing, she shares her journey with the revolutionary Root Cause Therapy method. More than her own personal transformation, Melissa also discusses deeply the connection between unresolved trauma and the issues we face as adults. Tune in now and empower yourself with the knowledge and techniques to heal from the effects of trauma.

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Melissa Hiemann – Teaching People To Heal From Effects Of Trauma

Melissa Hiemann has a passion for mental health and alternative healing, which stems from her lived experience and extensive self-study. She has overcome various challenges in her life, including addiction, trauma, relationship issues, and financial difficulties. She has also studied various techniques such as neurolinguistic programming, hypnotherapy, and timeline therapy. She has a wealth of knowledge and expertise that she shares with her students and clients.

Melissa’s mission is to revolutionize the way people learn and grow by offering cutting-edge courses and resources that facilitate personal and professional transformation. She believes that everyone has the potential to create positive change in their lives and the world. Through The Centre for Healing, she provides expert guidance, a supportive community, and a holistic approach to education. She empowers her students and clients to reach their full potential and achieve their goals.

Melissa, welcome. Thank you for joining us here.

Thanks so much for having me on. My pleasure.

I’m hoping you can start us off by telling us a little bit about how you got into the work you do and what drives your passion for it.

Going back in my history, which I’m sure you hear a lot about every day from your clients, my mom was 20 and had been in boarding school from when she was about 4 years old. She’d come over from Sri Lanka and my dad was 50. He was grieving the passing of his wife and his daughter who died in a car accident. My parents were put together. My dad fell in love with my beautiful young mom from Sri Lanka and they had me.

With the culture shock for my mom, my dad was from Germany. He was a big beer drinker out on boats every weekend with his friends. My mom, with me as a baby, was anxious. When I was two and a half, she wanted to divorce him. There’s trauma for a young child, even if it’s pre-cognitive and we don’t know what’s going on. We still can feel the family splitting apart. Looking back now, it was a huge thing that my parents split. I was tossed between two houses. Their split up was quite amicable in a sense. They didn’t fight over me or anything like that.

What I’ve come to find was that the partners that they chose after that, I felt very unsafe in both homes. My mom ended up with someone who was an alcoholic and there was domestic violence. She had children with him as well. I was witnessing that in my young years. My father was with someone who, I don’t know if we could label them a narcissist but they had narcissistic traits. It was my stepmom. I also went to primary school. I don’t know what you call it in America but it’s for ages 5 to 12. I had no friends. I was bullied. Everywhere that I went, I didn’t have someone to support me emotionally.

Everywhere I was, there was that lack of sense of safety. I understand why my mom couldn’t emotionally support me because of what she went through but it’s still a deep pain that I have to still work through. My father was very loving and affectionate. He says, “I love you,” and constantly tries to hug me. I was very standoffish because I didn’t get that proper nurturing from my mother. I would reject him. I feel like I took on a bit of my mom’s anxiety, even from when I was in the womb with her or when I was a young baby. I was anxious around him even though he was very warm and loving.

What I come to find out from learning all this stuff is that he has high-functioning anxiety. That’s why he liked to drink on the weekends. I didn’t feel safe anywhere. Being a young teenager, only 13 or 14, I helped my mom leave a domestic violence situation. She had two babies. My brother had leukemia as well when he was two and a half. We had all this extra trauma. I was to help my mom but also, I didn’t know how to deal with all of the emotions that I was feeling. I didn’t have someone to talk to about it. I didn’t feel like I could open up to anyone. Sure, I tried to see a counselor but that didn’t go anywhere. It didn’t help me at the time.

I ended up hanging out with the wrong kids. I ended up taking drugs and partying. There was sexual trauma being exposed at such a young age. I hardly went to school. My dad ended up finding out because I was going to a fancy private school and he’s like, “Why is there only 50% attendance in 2 years?” He made me get a job. I did change my friends. That did help a little bit. I was able to finish high school, thankfully. I still didn’t know how to deal with my emotions. I still felt like my value was based on how I looked and what I achieved.

Every time I saw my dad who saw what I’d achieved and my mom was worried about how I looked because I had acne, I constantly tried to always have good news. If I didn’t have any good news, I held it to myself. I was still abusing drugs and alcohol on the weekend. On the outside, it looked like I was doing quite well. I bought my first house when I was 22 with the help of my father. I had a sports car and a full-time job but I was so unhappy. I kept on recreating these relationships that I saw growing up. I went into an abusive relationship. I did it unconsciously because I wasn’t aware that we recreated these patterns. I saw my mom do that and then I did it.

In my early twenties, I ended up in an abusive relationship similar to my mom. I ended up getting the strength to leave but I would burn so many relationships, sabotage, and not look after myself properly. I got to the age of 26 where I got back with an abusive partner, cheated on him, and all of this terrible stuff that I was doing in an effort to try and feel loved, okay, and validated. I was sitting by myself. I had moved into a one-bedroom apartment. I had to sell my house. It all crashed down around me. I don’t know if you’ve seen the meme online that’s like, “Maybe I’m the problem,” instead of blaming everyone else and being a victim to everyone else.

We can be victims sometimes 100% but at that moment, I was so down. The drugs and alcohol weren’t doing anything. Everything had crashed down essentially in my rock bottom. I was like, “I need to get help.” I would’ve been about 24 or 25 in my quarter-life crisis. I’m like, “I need to get help.” I confined it to a friend and he mentioned a life coach that he knew. He goes, “There’s something like a life coach.” I’m like, “I’ll go get some advice.” We think we need advice at that time.

I went to see him and went into the session. I don’t know if you’ve heard of NLP and Time Line Therapy, those modalities. He was using those in a bit of Dr. Demartini’s work. It was a 3-hour session, although it only felt like 1 hour. I walked out of that session realizing how much my trauma had affected my behaviors and life patterns. I walked out realizing that I was the cause, as an adult, of a lot of my issues so I could take some radical responsibility. It was like my eyes had been cleaned. Even the colors were brighter on the street. I call it my awakening, essentially.

I knew for years since I was little, I wanted to start a business and I didn’t know what that would look like. I was in a sales job at the time. I knew if I wanted to start a business, I should learn sales. I was in a hard sales job. I was in a cushy job before but I threw myself into the deep end. When that practitioner said to me a month later, “Would you like to study? I’m going to be training people and certifying people,” I was like, “Yes.” I am so in. I was so excited. I signed up. I did that course with him.

In the middle of the course, I remember it was like a lightning bolt hitting me. I’m like, “I am meant to help people get out of their way. I knew this was my purpose.” I completed that course. I did a few posts on Facebook and started getting practice clients in my hours. I decided that I would resign. At the time, I didn’t have children and much responsibility so I could take a big risk like that. I don’t advise that everyone resign from their job straight away. I started getting clients. That would’ve been years ago. It was a struggle at the start.

I was doing the NLP, Time Line Therapy, and life coaching. I have an advanced deployment international business so I was helping people who were doing startups and entrepreneurs to help them unlock and get out of their way a little bit, like fear of failure and things like that. That was going okay and then I hired a business coach. I didn’t know that he was doing family constellations as well. I don’t know if you’ve heard of family constellations. I discovered some childhood trauma and big stuff came up.

I called it a healing hangover after this big stuff came up from my childhood about my parents separating. I felt like throwing up for a day and then the next day, I was all depressed. I even had to borrow my friend’s dog. I felt like watching cartoons. It was weird but I was processing my three-year-old trauma. It makes sense to me. I had a big realization that this work with NLP is amazing but there was a level that was missing. It was this deep somatic emotional work. A lot of NLP is about reframing and thinking of things differently.

What I found that was missing was the somatic part. Essentially, we can reframe things but the old emotions that we didn’t process from those traumas and hard times, especially me, I bottled up so much, are still there. I couldn’t get rid of my addictions. I was still smoking. I didn’t feel right or I felt numb, almost disassociated from my body. I started getting into studying trauma healing, somatic experiencing, and all of these different modalities that help you get into the body and release emotions as well. Not just have a cognitive knowing of what happened and that you are the way that you are but also add the layer of, “The body keeps the score. The body is holding the trauma still.”

In those events, if we didn’t have someone there to help us process the emotions, we often would bottle it up. That is what holds the trauma in place. When we are able to release the emotions and get the cognitive awareness as well, the healing is much deeper and client-centered in terms of they get to experience their wisdom, learnings, and realizations from when they start to heal these root causes. The method is called Root Cause Therapy because we’re working with the body and the mind together to get to the root cause of the unwanted behaviors or patterns and limiting beliefs, beliefs that have been created through these traumatic or painful events growing up, or even generational traumas that our parents went through.

OYM Melissa Hiemann | Root Cause Therapy

Root Cause Therapy: The body is holding the trauma still and, in those events, if we didn’t have someone there to help us process the emotions, we often would bottle it up and that is what holds the trauma in place.

 

Being able to heal those and whole gestalts or patterns that have occurred or schemas, if I’m speaking in your language. Being able to have conscious awareness of how it started and why it started. Let go of, “It’s not my fault to be able to heal it.” Our behaviors and thoughts automatically shift the burden or the heaviness of the emotions and how low, angry, or anxious they make us feel. Those start to lift and we can start to be in touch with our body, feel comfortable in our body, and be okay with all the emotions. We need all the negative and positive emotions. They help us navigate life. When we have a huge buildup, that’s when we can have huge blowups, meltdowns, or spirals.

You mentioned the family constellations. Is that part of the work you do?

No. I do teach a little bit of it in level two but I am not clinically trained in it. I don’t teach it as a modality in itself. It’s not essentially a part of it in the Root Cause Therapy method.

Have you tapped into the book, It Didn’t Start With You by Mark Wolynn?

OYM Melissa Hiemann | Root Cause Therapy

It Didn’t Start with You: How Inherited Family Trauma Shapes Who We Are and How to End the Cycle

My sister read it and I was like, “Can I borrow that from you when you’re finished?”

I’ll mention to our audience that it is a book by somebody who’s been a practitioner of family constellations who worked for a lot of years. Are you using NLP in your work?

Yes. Mainly, what we’re using is Time Line Therapy which came from NLP from Tad James who, rest his soul, has passed away. I’ve added other modalities to it. There’s the breathwork element, inner child healing element, and generational trauma element. One of the things when I finished my training, and this happened with a lot of practitioners and therapists, was I wasn’t clear on exactly how to run a session effectively.

You get all of this knowledge and understanding of different symptoms that your clients are showing and how you can give them some tools to work through that and help them see the patterns. I left my training with like, “I’ve got all these tools and understandings but how do I run a session?” That’s coming from my paperwork background being an international trade.

I created what we call a testing sheet. What we train our practitioners to do is use it in each session because healing sessions are intangible. I feel better that part of my life has improved but I like to see the data and go from session to session knowing exactly what we’re working on. With the testing sheet, essentially, we go through someone’s life tapping into their emotions.

If I say to anger from birth to now, who or what comes up for you? You might have some memories, people, or situations that come up automatically in your mind when I say that. We are checking on the, for lack of a better term, emotional baggage that people are holding onto that is taking them away from being happy in the present moment. We then get some feedback on all areas of their life. How anxious are they feeling? How depressed are they feeling? How abundant are they feeling? How healthy are they feeling in their body? How are they feeling in their relationships? We get all those numbers.

We get data back on unwanted behaviors or thoughts that they’re having. Essentially, the core of this came from me and my partner, who ran an outpatient addiction and mental health clinic in Melbourne for four and a half years. We specialize in ice addiction because that’s what my partner experienced or methamphetamine for those of you who don’t know the slang.

The way that we approached helping people working through addictions and how I was able to overcome my addictions was influenced by the work of Dr. Hawkins. One of his books is Power vs. Force, which is an amazing book if you’re interested in how different levels of consciousness can affect how you think about the world, how you can understand the world, and why people have certain behaviors.

OYM Melissa Hiemann | Root Cause Therapy

Power vs. Force: The Hidden Determinants of Human Behavior

What we did at the outpatient clinic was help people release all these trapped emotions, old baggage, and what they were holding onto to move their baseline of how they feel to be in a more peaceful state. What happens when you have a lot of baggage is that you have so many heavy emotions and negative emotions that when you take drugs or it could be even sex or shopping, addictions come in many different forms, you get a sense of feeling peaceful and good for a little bit. It’s not natural for you so you tend to go back down to your old state. Hence addictions, we are trying to feel okay.

What we would do is try to help people to release and heal all the baggage they were holding. Their baseline for how they felt naturally was almost to where the drugs would take them so they naturally stopped using. We never tell people to stop using. We’re like, “Go through the therapy, and then you’ll naturally see that you won’t want it anymore.” What would happen is people would even try the drugs again. It would pull them down and have a different effect. They wouldn’t want it anymore naturally.

Imagine, we could go back in time and help people to have a good childhood, bonding, and attachment. Essentially, we’re helping them reparent themselves to have that with the safety of the practitioner co-regulation in having a safe space in a relationship. A lot of our traumas happen in relationships. We’re able to help them to have that childhood that they couldn’t have so that as an adult, they’ve got all this wisdom and knowledge, not so much of that heavy baggage holding them back. We would go through that.

We also look at physical issues. There are links to physical issues and pain from having a lot of trauma. For those of you who are interested in that, you can look at the ACE Study. They are helping people who were obese in a clinic and looking at those who lost weight. There was a lot that put the weight back on. Why did they put the weight back on?

They had essentially a checklist of, “These are the very stressful experiences growing up.” The checklist comprised of, “Were you verbally or physically abused growing up? Did you have a parent that had an addiction growing up?” The more stressful experiences that they had growing up, the more likely that they would have addictions or would have physical issues. That’s an interesting study that you can look into.

We look at, “Are you experiencing any physical issues?” We can address them directly with the client. What we saw happen was that their physical issues would naturally start to improve as we were going through the therapy with them. Their physical issues would start to dissipate. That made me realize that there is a link between the last manifestation of us suppressing and holding onto all this stuff that we do can manifest as physical pain and disease.

It’s either directly through holding onto those emotions in our body and our body not knowing what to do with the least stress hormones that it’s holding onto for decades or indirectly where we weren’t treated well so then we don’t treat ourselves well. We don’t look after ourselves properly. We’re not doing that consciously. We want to eat well and exercise but if we miss that growing up and being looked after properly, then there’s a likely chance that we’re learning how to look after ourselves or how we were looked after growing up. We go through limiting beliefs.

If we miss being looked after properly growing up, then there's a likely chance that we're learning how to look after ourselves. Click To Tweet

In these traumas and stressful events, when we have strong emotions, we can make a strong generalization about ourselves and the world, especially those aged 0 to 7. If we lose our mom at the shopping center, in that moment we’re three and we don’t know if she’s ever going to come back, we think we’re abandoned because everything is about survival.

When we’re children, we need our parents there. We might create the belief, “I’m now alone.” You might think that’s not a big trauma but how that can show up later in life is that we feel very uncomfortable being alone. We will be willing to hang out with anyone because we don’t want to be alone and we end up hanging out with people that aren’t good for us. We have anxiety in the future about being alone. We will often sabotage our relationships to fulfill that belief. They’re like self-fulfilling prophecies.

We’re not conscious about this. We don’t want this to happen. What we do is put someone slightly under so they’re still fully conscious and awake to ask, “What is the root cause of why you believe you’re alone?” I will take a step back and say we do kinesiology muscle testing to check what beliefs someone has in their subconscious. This work can be done online or in person. We teach people how to do it to themselves.

We ask the subconscious, “What is the root cause?” It might go back to when they lost their mom at the shopping center, a trauma growing up, their mother’s or father’s side and they experience trauma that one of their parents or grandparents went through. I’ve been in my grandmother’s body and experienced that. I didn’t know why I was so uncomfortable about food and going to the supermarket. I wouldn’t even go to a restaurant. I was scared there was not enough food in the world. It’s these weird thoughts that I had.

I had a root course therapist work on me. While asking my brain what’s the root cause, I’m in a kitchen holding a baby. There’s like an older girl with me and two little toddlers next to me. I felt so sad. All I had was some rice. I realized I was my grandmother. I processed all the emotions and released all that. It flushed up on the way back all the other times I recreated and felt like that in my life. I had to check with my mom because I was like, “Is this real?” She’d never told me.

I told her I felt this old, I was holding a baby, and there was an older girl and two younger ones. She goes, “That’s me, my brother, sister, and our cousin who would come and help my mom on the farm in Sri Lanka. My dad’s business had failed. She didn’t have enough food to feed all of us. She just had a little bit of rice.” Ever since then, I can go to a restaurant fine, enjoy all the food, and not worry about that. That’s one little example.

You get it. That’s that cross-generational stuff. You’re talking about ACEs and I thought I’d mentioned to the audience that the book, The Deepest Well Healing the Long-Term Effects of Childhood Trauma and Adversity by Nadine Burke Harris is a good way to get an overview without having to go read the ACE Study and try to interpret it. Nadine was a pediatrician and was out practicing.

OYM Melissa Hiemann | Root Cause Therapy

The Deepest Well: Healing the Long-Term Effects of Childhood Trauma and Adversity

All of a sudden, somebody told her about the ACEs thing that had happened ten years earlier. She said, “How did I go through medical school and not hear about the ACE Study, the adverse effects of childhood events on my health as an adult?” It’s very powerful stuff. It’s prompting me to ask you, in what format do you work with people? Do you work with people at two levels? Do you work with them as you’re the clinician and they’re the client? Do you train other people to become clinicians?

I was seeing a lot of clients. We had a very full practice for a long time. I’ve stepped into the role. I do have a few regular clients that I’ve had for years but I do mainly focus my energy on training. We certify people around the world. We have an online training. We have thousands of students who have been qualified or going through the Root Cause Therapy Course. My partner has created his modality with one of his practitioner colleagues. We’ve got two main modalities. This is where most of our time is spent but anyone can do this training. Within the training is a lot of the healing work.

Not only do we train psychologists, counselors, therapists, and healers but we also encourage people who want to go on this journey to come in and do the training. They don’t have to be a practitioner and have clients but within the training, there is the chance for a self-development journey. We also have mentors and senior practitioners who can work and do this therapy with them.

They can get exposed to this work and all of these understandings, and go on their healing journey as well. If someone’s not interested in that, we do have a practitioner directory. They want to see someone locally or work with someone online. They are insured and accredited through IICT as we are as trainers as well, which is the International Institute for Complementary Therapists.

What is the course of training or the length of training? How long does it take to go through training to be able to be certified for you?

With Root Cause Therapy, you’re looking at about 3 to 6 months. I do say 3 to 6 months because there is a core training but you could be studying for the whole year with all the resources and bonus courses that you get within the course. There’s a huge resource library and I’m always adding to that. You also get lifetime access. Pay the one-off enrollment fee. We do weekly live support calls. Whether you attend those during your training or you want some supervision and help with a client in two years, that’s included.

There’s lifetime access to our support and ongoing extra classes and training. To answer your question, the course is 3 to 6 months. If they do our other course, which is Embodied Processing, it is a bottom-up approach. It’s more for people who aren’t ready to dive into their trauma but need to build safety in their nervous system first. That one takes at least six months to train in.

What’s the best way for people to access the programs and more information about this?

With my experience of going through school and not doing well, what I came to realize is it is important that you resonate with the teacher for you to be able to take in the information. It’s helpful. What we’ve done is offer a lot of free courses. There’s free introductory training to Root Cause Therapy and also to our other courses.

It is important that you resonate with the teacher for you to be able to take in the information. Click To Tweet

We have a few free certifications as well for people who, financially, are not in a place to commit to a bigger training but do want to start this journey. They will go to TheCentreForHealing.com/free-courses. If you go there, you’ll see all of our free courses. If you’re having trouble with that, type in Root Cause Therapy Practitioner Training in Google and we will come up as well.

You have thousands of people who’ve already been trained. Are they mostly in Australia?

Maybe 50% are in Australia and New Zealand, and then the rest are in the US, Canada, and Europe. We’ve got some in China and all in different countries around the world. Also, the UK. They’re not all predominantly in Australia. We’re growing over where you are as well.

Is the Practitioner Directory available at TheCentreForHealing.com?

Yes. If they go to TheCentreForHealing.com/practitioner-directory, they’ll be able to find someone either online or hopefully in their area.

Of all of these modalities that you’ve done, what would you say was the most directly impactful to you?

I still always go back to loving the Time Line therapy because it is mind-blowing. We ask the intelligence of our body where the root cause of something is and for it to take us there. Sometimes that is in the womb. I’ve had many clients in regression go back to the womb or when they were one year old, where you don’t think that you would be able to remember but your body remembers. For it to go exactly to that pinpoint, it’s incredible and never ceases to blow my mind. That’s why it’s such a huge part of Root Cause Therapy because it has blown my mind.

I had a look through your show before you interviewed me. You interviewed Dr. Bradley Nelson who created The Emotion Code and The Body Code. Although I don’t teach it, I am such a huge fan of that method. For children and animals in particular where you can’t take them in regression, I’ve got tingles because it’s so powerful and I can help my client’s children.

What can happen, and you might resonate with this, is that you’ll start working with your clients or their parents. As they start to realize the trauma that they’ve gone through, they’ve passed down a lot of that generational trauma unconsciously and start to feel very guilty. They can start to feel like, “I can’t believe I did that to my children. I was passing that down.”

I can say to a client, “I can do a distance healing on your child. What’s your child’s name? We can do some healing on them.” I can recommend Dr. Bradley’s book to them to start doing healing work on their children. That’s been incredible. That’s gone off track to Root Cause Therapy but I wanted to say that I was very excited that I saw that you interviewed him. That’s a great alternative way for people to start addressing these trapped emotions.

Get centered, take a breath, and think of everything we’ve already talked about but here’s something that we haven’t even touched on yet or something that I want to go back and highlight that you’ve already discussed. What would that be?

One of the positive things about doing this work is that when you work with a practitioner and you go and do these healings on these big or little traumas that have happened in your life, a huge part of this work is the integration and being able to do it yourself. I don’t believe that we should rely on our practitioners and therapists every time we are feeling dysregulated, we have an outburst, and we feel like there’s something wrong with us. If we approach this work like there is something wrong with us, then we are forever going to want to heal the next thing.

Even though we have The Centre for Healing where we teach these methods and practitioners to do this work, at the end of the day, it’s important that you are very gentle with yourself and realize that there was nothing ever wrong with you. Sometimes even picture your inner children and hold them and let them know that it’s okay that they’re feeling that way. There’s so much power in that, aside from booking sessions with someone. There’s so much power in self-healing and doing that alone.

It's really important that you are very gentle with yourself and realize that there was nothing ever wrong with you. Click To Tweet

I greatly appreciate your willingness to take the time to share with us the work you do. I’m also grateful that you put out some of these trainings for people to get introduced to this, especially if they have either time constraints or financial constraints and you do that for free. That’s wonderful.

Thank you, Timothy. It’s my honor to be here. Honestly, I’m so grateful that you allowed me to be on here with you. Thank you so much.

It’s my pleasure. Be well. Take care. We will stay in touch.

 

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About Melissa Hiemann

OYM Melissa Hiemann | Root Cause TherapyMelissa Hiemann has a passion for mental health and alternative healing which stems from her own lived experience and extensive self-study. She has overcome various challenges in her life, including addiction, trauma, relationship issues, and financial difficulties.

She has also studied various fields, such as NLP, hypnotherapy, timeline therapy, business, and more. She has a wealth of knowledge and expertise that she shares with her students and clients.

Melissa’s mission is to revolutionize the way people learn and grow by offering cutting-edge courses and resources that facilitate personal and professional transformation. She believes that everyone has the potential to create positive change in their lives and the world. Through The Centre for Healing, she provides expert guidance, a supportive community, and a holistic approach to education. She empowers her students and clients to reach their full potential and achieve their goals.

Melissa Hiemann is a visionary leader, a compassionate healer, and a dedicated educator. She is proud of the impact she has made through The Centre for Healing, which she co-founded with her partner Ryan Hassan in 2016. She is always looking for new ways to expand her knowledge and skills, as well as to serve and inspire others. She invites you to join her at The Centre for Healing and embark on a transformative educational journey with her. https://www.thecentreforhealing.com/.

 

Journey's Dream

Journey's Dream

Used to select this used (Journey's Dream) as Author of the On Your Mind Podcasts