Body Mind Therapy:
Bodywork & Trauma Recovery
Psychosomatic bodywork is a means for improving emotional awareness, learning to feel the body more and its sensations to then be able to recover from trauma.
The body holds trauma within and therefore trauma is healed and released through the body. By working with a body-awareness approach, it is an invitation to reclaim your physical, mental, emotional and energetic presence.
Body Mind therapy works by tapping into mind-body communication and the purpose is to connect the two again. It can then be possible to heal the mind through the body and/or to heal the body by way of the mind.
Trauma work & Bioenergetics
Perhaps you know clearly what the difficulties are but you haven’t found relief or change no matter how much personal work you do, or perhaps you’ve gained a lot of awareness about your patterns and where they come from, yet you are still triggered and brought back to the same reactions time and time again. This is because trauma isn't about the experience itself but is about how we remember the experience and how we lived it and continue to live it, because memories stay trapped in our body today. The good news is that these things can change and trauma can be healed. There can be relief as humans have the innate capacity to self-heal. The body knows the way.
The Psychosomatic bodywork that I do is inspired by a variety of sources including Somatic Experiencing, Polyvagal Theory, Trauma/Tension Release Exercises (TRE) and Bioenergetics Analysis. The Bioenergetics is an expressive Body Mind psychotherapy, and the approach works with the whole person because it integrates both the mind and the body by focusing on the energy flow (life force) between them. The premise is that the mind and body function as one and the goal of working psychosomatically is to unite them. Sessions are active and include embodied practices, bodywork to release blocks and connect with your life force, and attention to nervous system regulation for managing stress and energy levels, among other things. As the body holds our trauma, it must be released via the body. And as well-known MD and author Bessel van der Kolk says, “The Body Keeps the Score.”
Bioenergetics is both verbal and physical. The verbal work is about exploring your personal history, desires, associations and current challenges, and working with the body is about giving you the chance to become aware of emotional issues on a tangible body level to facilitate change. Bioenergetics is part of the Humanistic Therapy family ,which emphasizes the importance of being your true self in order to lead the most fulfilling life. The body tells the story of a person's life and as a person becomes more acquainted with their deeper feelings and emotions, they are often quite surprised to discover how their bodily tensions, posture and breathing patterns support the suppression of their emotions, reinforce uncomfortable and destructive belief systems and hide their shame and underlying fears. With the hard work of discovering these feelings and old somatic (body) holding patterns in a supportive relational setting, there can be the exciting discovery that the expression of emotion and the loosening up of bodily tensions results in a feeling of well-being, joy and a new connection to life.
Somatic Experiencing (SE™) is a body-oriented therapeutic model that is specifically for healing trauma and other stress disorders. SE is based on the intersection of physiology, psychology, ethology, biology, neuroscience, indigenous healing practices, and medical biophysics and has been clinically applied for more than four decades. Working with Somatic Experience allows someone to release traumatic shock, which is key to transforming PTSD and the wounds of emotional and early developmental attachment trauma. It is less active than the Bioenergetics approach listed above and usually is strictly based on working with the body, instead of the story or the content of what happened.
By working with me somatically, I rely on my learnings from different techniques to apply what is most appropriate to you. Working somatically is a key part of the Integrative Approach or for integration after a Constellation has been done. If you feel drawn to this or have any other questions, follow the button below to schedule either a 20 minute "Get to know Meghan" or to schedule a session to get started.
For experiencing some of this in a group setting, the Inner Compass Community meets every Monday for weekly development circles. Each week we do bodywork and exercises for exploring and learning about nervous system regulation. Come join us!