My approach to EMDR is to utilize the practice to target harmful and negative core beliefs. Many of our core beliefs are developed in childhood by the age of 7 years old and serve as a foundation to build our lives on. These childhood core beliefs are developed by interacting with our parents and caregivers. When we are children our brains are still developing so it is harder to rely on reasoning or challenge the information being presented to us. This means that core beliefs are formed by watching and listening to what our caregivers do and say and how they interact in the world. If there was any sort of abuse or neglect in the home growing up, our core beliefs can be harmful messages that aren't true and don't serve us in our adult life. Identifying core beliefs requires some reflection on our part, but a trick to identifying them is to notice our behavior or negative thought process. A lot of times, what we think about and how we act are based on the same core belief, so noticing similar messages in behavior and thoughts can lead us to uncovering one. It's worth it to examine our core beliefs, as we have physically and mentally changed since childhood and now have the ability to choose how we see the world and take control of our lives. I have linked a youtube video with an exercise that quickly helps identify core beliefs. I have also included a worksheet to record core beliefs to prepare for EMDR.