Somatic psychotherapy is a pioneering therapy that recognizes the dynamic interplay of the mind, body, emotions, and spirit. The fact that our culture has separated these concepts out and created a vast dichotomy of the mind and body is exactly what makes this work so needed. The idea that we need to have “mind/body practices” in our culture can point to the injustice of separating our very nature.
The term soma is an ancient Greek concept that refers to the body as the container of all of our experiences (including the mental, emotional, energetic and spiritual). That is to say, that we cannot have any experience unless we are living in a body. The body therefore is an energetic system that is deeply and curiously interconnected. Our feelings effect our thoughts, our thoughts effect our posture, our beliefs influence our behavioral patterns, our experiences effect our movement patterns — the web is endless. We are a dynamic and amazingly interconnected system and our symptoms (depression, anxiety, pain, etc) point to such imbalance.
In somatics we deeply listen to the language of the body (sensation, movement, breath, voice, etc) to not only better understand unconscious material, but to also be better resourced. The body gives us an incredible amount of information on how to navigate the world, but we have been taught to ignore such bodily cues.
By working with the body in psychotherapy, we can work directly with the nervous system while also clearing and creating new patterns of embodiment. Through our lives, our bodies respond and often hold emotions which manifest as muscular tension thus creating imbalance and symptoms. Just as we know we need to clean our houses, we also need to continue to clean and clear the energetics of the body so this system can run in it’s highest capacity.
Clearly, I could write a dissertation on this (and have!), so I will stop here. If you are curious about how you can become more embodied, and give that tired mind a rest, we can talk further. You can reach me at JodiLevy@mac.com.
In health, Jodi