Body-based psychotherapy or somatic counseling is a form of therapeutic work that rests on the recognition that our bodies have a deep intelligence and wisdom that we can learn to directly relate with and be guided by.
By regarding our bodies as sources of insight, somatic therapy takes traditional talk-therapy one step further. It does this by using the “language” or “voices” of our bodies – movement, gesture, vocal tone, posture, and so forth – as the basis for a therapeutic “conversation.” *
Because I bring extensive experience in both somatic therapy as well as traditional talk-therapy, I strive to find just the right combination for each client to ensure we work together in whatever way feels most comfortable, supportive, and generative for them.
Body-based therapy is a deeply practical approach that is applicable to almost any kind of difficulty or addiction a person may be experiencing. The reason for this is that even when we do not know the answer or the way forward, the wisdom of our body can serve as a trustable guide.
The core concern of therapy is establishing a relationship of trust and respect with ourselves and our embodied experience. For most people seeking therapy, through no fault of their own, it is the lack of this kind of relationship that is the heart of the matter and at the root of their difficulty.
But with the help of a therapeutic guide and companion, we began to develop such a relationship. By hearing what the body has to say and responding with genuine respect and interest, we learn to trust what seems most untrustable. In this way, we turn parts of our experience that have felt like enemies into powerful allies.
By being able to hear the transformational truths of our body and relate with compassion to our most painful problems, we can regain our faith in our ourselves, restore our self-esteem, and lead lives of beauty, integrity, creativity, empowerment, and deep happiness.
The body has a super wisdom that is in favor of life, rather than death. This is the power that we depend on for life. All [helping professionals] are responsible for letting their patients know of this great force working within them. – Dr. Richard Cabot, Harvard Medical School.
There is more wisdom in your body than in your deepest philosophy. – Friedrich Nietzsche
It is amazing how many hints and guides and intuitions for living come to the sensitive person who has ears to hear what his body is saying. – Rollo May
The body always leads us home . . . if we can simply learn to trust sensation and stay with it long enough for it to reveal appropriate action, movement, insight, or feeling. – Pat Ogden
Man has no Body distinct from his Soul for that called Body is a portion of Soul discerned by the five Senses… – William Blake
And I said to my body, softly, “I want to be your friend.” It took a long breath and replied, “I have been waiting my whole life for this.” – Nayyirah Waheed
*The body is a multilingual being. It speaks through its color and its temperature, the flush of recognition, the glow of love, the ash of pain, the heat of arousal, the coldness of non-conviction. . . . It speaks through the leaping of the heart, the falling of the spirits, the pit at the center, and rising hope. – Clarissa Pinkola Estés