There are four kinds of flashbacks that can eff up your day. These aren’t medical diagnoses. They’re four different ways your memory from the past can make itself known in the present.
Visual flashbacks are memories that you can see. When triggered, they can enter your mind suddenly. When a positive memory is triggered, it can rush into our head and bring out joy. When the memory is negative, similar levels of fear, anger, disgust, and so forth might come out.
This could simply be how the brain works. It makes powerful associations and, when triggered, relevant memory floods in. We don’t complain when positive memories come, do we?
In more clinical cases, it could be that our entire psyche is bent toward the negative.
Auditory flashbacks follow the same process that all flashbacks do. Remembered sounds crash into present-day thought.
There may be a different element to auditory flashbacks, which is known as the inner critic. This is an internal voice that so many us of hear throughout the day. Its main goal seems to be to take us down in flames of incessant self-criticism.
You can’t do that! Who do you think you are? You’re going to fail.
These are common inner thoughts but what if they are rooted in traumatic experiences?
When painful or negative feelings suddenly hijack our moods, it might an emotional flashback. Emotional flashbacks – again – are inspired by past events. They came rushing in whenever triggered.
Suddenly, you’re filled with unexpected feelings that are so distracting that you have to excuse yourself from whatever you’re doing at the moment. Emotional flashbacks.
I don’t even know if this is a thing but behavior flashbacks might be the most interesting and dangerous kind of flashback.
I am guessing that behavioral flashbacks are akin to acting out a dream. My wife knows when I’m in a martial arts battle dream because I end up physically kicking her while she lays sleeping next to me.
Behavioral flashbacks, then, inspire acting out behaviors that are similar to what was done at the time of the original memory.
And there you have it, four kinds of flashbacks to consider as you or someone you know recovers from a traumatic event.