The Rewind Technique is a non-intrusive, safe and highly effective psychological method for detraumatising people, which can also be used for removing phobias. It should be carried out by an experienced practitioner and is only performed once a person is in a state of deep relaxation.

When they are fully relaxed, they are encouraged to bring their anxiety briefly to the surface and then are calmed down again by being guided to imagine a place where they feel totally at ease.

Their relaxed state is then deepened and they are asked to imagine that, in their special safe place, they have a TV or screen with a remote control facility. They are asked to imagine floating up high behind the screen, out of body, and to watch themselves watching the screen, without actually seeing the picture (creating what is termed ‘double dissociation’ – being twice removed from the event). They watch themselves watching a ‘film’ of the traumatic event that is still affecting them. The film begins at a point before the trauma occurred and ends at a point after the trauma is over.

Besides being safe, quick and painless, the technique has the advantage of being non-voyeuristic. Intimate or painfully upsetting details do not have to be disclosed. This reduces the distress for the client, and also helps protect the therapist from the possibility of being vicariously traumatised themselves when detraumatising particularly disturbing events.


Edward Conn