I have through personal experience and a variety of holistic therapies come to an awareness of the importance of body mind connections. I work with both therapy clients and supervisees to foster this awareness in themselves and others.
It is one of the potential pitfalls of a ‘talking’ therapy that the clients narrative rather than their feelings can become the focus. Facts are far less important in therapy than feelings. As we are an embodiment of feelings I incorporate this sense of self into the therapy. Words can be used to escape feelings but if we keep ourselves grounded in our physicality as we talk, this is much less likely to happen.
There is a long and important tradition of body focused psychotherapy and I endeavour to integrate elements of this into my work. I do this in part by paying attention to body language and the clients use of metaphor. Metaphor gives us direct contact with the physical world and can give much quicker access into feelings than more literal language.
I have found in my work over the past few years in particular that I have been able to help clients identify where in their bodies certain feelings are located and to understand the body’s expression. Where people have developed persistent symptoms it is still possible to look at the feelings beneath and sometimes make chronic symptoms redundant.