Somatic Experiencing (SE) is a form of body (somatic) psychotherapy that was developed by Dr. Peter Levine. SE works with the body’s physiology to resolve trauma and restore resilience and balance to the nervous system. This can result in an alleviation of symptoms related to trauma such as depression, anxiety, chronic illness, sleep disturbance, etc.
Somatic Experiencing employs the awareness of body sensation to help people “renegotiate,” discharge, and heal their traumas rather than relive them repeatedly, or restrict their lives in order to not have the traumatic material re-triggered. With appropriate guidance into the body’s own innate capacity to heal trauma, the highly aroused survival energies (fight, flight, freeze) can be safely and gradually discharged.
In addition, I work with SE as a way to be present with “what is,” which facilitates awakening of consciousness while releasing trauma and stress. This is the subject of my chapter in The Sacred Mirror titled “Healing Trauma in the Eternal Now.” (See ARTICLES page)
EMDR (Eye Movement DESENSITIZATION and Reprocessing)
EMDR works with the neuro-networks in the brain in a way that helps to release past trauma and beliefs and bring you more into present time. This is done through what is called bilateral stimulation, which is a stimulation of the right and left hemispheres of the brain. I usually do this by using equipment that produces sound tones in each ear and buzzers in each hand. The bilateral stimulation used in EMDR seems to unlock the nervous system and allow the brain to process the experience that has been stuck. The ability to process trauma is naturally built into the nervous system. EMDR helps to get the mind out of the way and allow that to happen.
I have over 20 years experience with EMDR. I have found it to be helpful with any and all issues that people bring. I often combine EMDR with Somatic Experiencing, which I find to be highly effective. I also utilize EMDR to facilitate clients being present in the body with their direct experience in the moment.
I enjoy helping couples become more awake in their relating. This is the subject of my book, Awakened Relating: A Guide to Embodying Undivided Love in Intimate Relationship(See BOOK page). Relationship is constantly inviting us to look within and inquire into our patterns of relating that create conflict and separation. Life teaches us the most through relationship. This provides endless opportunities for exposing all of the beliefs and concepts that distort our view and keep us from being truly connected. It is through the struggles in relationship that we can potentially awaken to our shared essence and come into harmony with each other and all of life.
When we accept this important opportunity, we come into conscious alignment with the force that is pulling us all back home to our true balance and wholeness. Relationship then becomes a healing partnership. It becomes a force itself—for awakening together as well as healing all that causes pain and separation.
Psychotherapy with a nondual orientation is about working from presence—the nondual awareness that is already awake, open, and naturally compassionate. From the silence and patience of an open heart, the non-dual therapist brings presence and a kind listening to the client. Psychotherapy, by its very nature, is a dual practice. However, nonduality includes this dual perspective as an expression of its own undivided nature. The undivided nature of awareness invites difficult issues, emotions and human sufferings as doorways or portals to a deeper wisdom within. From here, both client and therapist together dismantle the false, learned, historical self, to reveal a deeper dimension of a true self.
A nondual therapist works from true nature and is therefore able to provide direction and solutions that are sourced in an infinite intelligence. The more a therapist recognizes their true nature, the more they are able to see and feel it shining in their clients and invite it forwards. In the company of another who touches into infinite being, we can gradually come to know ourselves as the same being.Coming together in this all-inclusive, all-embracing awareness within the relational field between client and therapist provides an optimal environment for transformation.