Embodiment Processes and Somatic Psychology
Integrating Body and Mind
Ignoring the rich storehouse of experience contained in our bodies can create stress, emotional stagnation and physical pain. As we explore our body-mind connection, we add another facet to our journey of self discovery. We expand how we learn and what to bring to the world around us.
Claiming the Body
Embodiment is the process through which awareness enhances the moment-to-moment circulation of thoughts, feelings, sensations, and energies through the physical body. It forms the basis for somatic psychology, which is the study of the body/mind interface.
Embodiment processes explore the relationship between our physical matter and our energy, and the interaction of our body structures with our thoughts and actions. When we encourage somatic connections, we encounter the richness of "body up" intelligence, memory and emotion. We can include these powerful resources to our "top down" cognitive and insight-focused therapy.
As we embody mindfulness, we become centered and can let go of trying to constrain, command, or ignore our bodies. We embrace a more expanded sense of who we are.
My skill bringing embodiment practices and therapeutic talk therapy together enriches clients’ therapeutic processing and the integration of their mind, body and spirit. This improves mental health and increases overall well-being.
Some basic premises:
- Any event impacts our whole being - physical, emotional, cognitive and spiritual.
- All events must come through our sensory systems.
- Thoughts are also physiological events that take place throughout our organism and not just in the mind
Using Dance/Movement Therapy, visualization, sensory awareness and progressive relaxation, my clients and I create safe spaces to explore and understand the wisdom of the body through emotion and sensation. The memories and experiences of our bodies are a powerful source of healing energy. My years of experience with talk therapy integrates and strengthens embodiment/somatic work. I offer forms of embodiment and somatic practices for individuals and groups.
Breathwork – Practical ways to use the breath to focus perception in the present, create mind-body connection, and open ourselves to psychological/spiritual understanding.
Sensory Awareness – The moment-by-moment tracking of physical sensations such as weight, temperature, and rhythmic movements of breath and heart. Increasing kinesthetic awareness of body position, tension and circulation of energy.
Progressive Relaxation – The systematic practice of consciously letting go of tension by tensing and releasing muscles using breathing and visualization techniques.