My Approach

Mindfulness and the Body

MINDFULNESS AND THE BODY

Hakomi Mindful Somatic Psychotherapy

My therapeutic approach is deeply influenced by Hakomi Mindful Somatic Psychotherapy.  It is a mindfulness-based, body-centered approach, which is experiential in nature.  This way of working is quite different from traditional talk therapy; while you explore your issues and concerns, your attention is gently brought to your present somatic experience.  By focusing on your body in mindfulness, you are able to reach deeper parts of yourself that might not be accessible by merely talking about the past events on the intellectual/cognitive level.  The body remembers what the mind might not.  Although we might not recall our early significant experiences, they continue to influence us as adults in powerful ways, shaping how we relate to the self, to the others and to the world.

 

We sometimes find ourselves stuck despite an intellectual understanding of what's holding us back from the very thing we long for.  By turning inward and settling in the present moment, we can explore and transform our somatically held beliefs and expectations.  This way, profound change is possible; we can move beyond our internal blocks and have more options and possibilities.  When we make a deeper, more intimate connection with ourselves, we can respond to life in a way that is more aligned with what we truly want.

Somatic Experiencing Trauma Therapy

Another model that I use with my clients is Somatic Experiencing Trauma Therapy (SE). SE is a body-centered approach to the healing and resolution of trauma and other stress related symptoms.  This approach looks at our autonomic nervous system (ANS), which governs the fight, flight or freeze responses.  Although ANS is designed to be self-regulating, it can be dysregulated when our nervous system is overwhelmed by a traumatic experience involving intense fear or helplessness.  As a result, the body continues to respond as if it was under threat.  SE offers a framework to assess where we might be stuck in the activation of our nervous system, and provides tools to resolve the fixated state and restore the body's ability to self-regulate.  As a Somatic Experiencing practitioner, I will facilitate the process for you to restore the natural balance and move past the place where you are stuck.

Brainspotting

 

Brainspotting (BSP) is a trauma therapy of identifying, processing and releasing sources of trauma or emotional pain stored in the body. When we refer to a “trauma,” it can be any emotionally intense or terrifying experience that is “too much, too soon or too fast” for our nervous system to process. When the nervous system is too overwhelmed to process the experience properly, unresolved trauma can be stuck in our body, which manifests in a wide range of physical and emotional symptoms. This affects our sense of self and prevents us from being grounded in the present moment.  BSP is designed to access these unresolved memories and process them until the activation is gone, when those memories will not be triggering its emotional intensity and distress.

 

BSP is known for resolving PTSD symptoms resulting from trauma, but it is also effective for anxiety, depression, psychosomatic symptoms and addictive behaviors. Additionally, it is often used by athletes, musicians and other performers for performance enhancement.

 

BSP is based on the observation that “where we look affects how we feel.” In a session, we find the relevant eye position in the visual field that corresponds to the deep, inner felt sense of distress over an issue that you would like to resolve. Holding the gaze at the fixed position and staying with what emerges within, instead of “talking” about the problem, helps process and release the emotional and physical activation associated with trauma. In a BSP session, we are able to access emotions on a deeper level and release the physical and emotional effects of trauma thus initiating the self-healing process.

 

BSP can be used effectively via online sessions. 

INNATE ABILITY TO HEAL AND GROW WITHIN
I believe that we are all born with an ability to find an answer within, heal our wounds and grow. As a therapist, I facilitate your healing process in a gentle, non-judgmental and respectful manner, providing a safe space for the unfolding to happen from within.

INTEGRATIVE APPROACH

I was initially trained in more traditional talk therapies, and I draw from different modalities depending on your needs. These modalities include Psychodynamic approaches, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy as well as Person-centered approach. I'm also available for consultation/coaching sessions which tend to be more brief and focused on situational problem-solving.

Fern Plant
“Staying in contact with the body is staying in contact with a deeper knowing.”
Marilyn Morgan