Somatic Experiencing® (SE™) is a naturalistic and neurobiological approach to resolving anxiety and other stress-related disorders, and generally feeling confident and comfortable in one’s own body.
For folks who have survived difficult families, life events, births, relationships, etc. Somatic Experiencing can stop the constant triggering and restore your life energy–without telling your life story.
“Trauma is part of life. It doesn’t have to be a life sentence.”
— Peter Levine, creator of Somatic Experiencing
Somatic Experiencing not as well-known as talk therapy, so it is a little mysterious. What does it do? How does it work? Do you have to tell your story?
SE explores body sensations, images, emotions, meaning, and movements that arise. You don’t have to tell your life story, or much of anything. We work with what is, right now.
Results include a reduction of stress symptoms, plus an enhanced sense of well-being, self-compassion, and increased resilience. It is a very gentle, effective method.
I’m a Somatic Experiencing Practitioner. I’ve long included SE work in my dance and arts coaching. Folks feel the benefits. One client’s 30-year pain went away. Another reduced her fear of being seen. Another became close to her family again. It makes my heart glad.
If you’ve had challenging experiences in your life, if you feel that they haven’t been resolved, if you find yourself being repeatedly triggered, SE may help you.
SE helps “stuck” nervous systems come back into regulation. This seems small, but it’s pretty big. Bad things happen, sometimes just once, sometimes for years. When we are unable to defend ourselves for whatever reason, our self-defensive impulses remain unexpressed–-they get stuck in the body.
We get into recurring loops of emotion and activation because our alarm bells go off at the slightest provocation–even thinking about something can be activating. SE turns their switch back to As Needed, so the nervous system can go back to its normal operation–on for threat, off when the threat is resolved.
If fear, anger, despair, or freeze have been issues for you, SE can help.
Somatic Experiencing is NOT talk therapy.
It is body awareness and understanding.
A brief overview of whatever you want to address is enough.
SE sessions include discovering and celebrating whatever is working in your life, what is going well. We humans tend to gloss over the good and focus on the problems; in SE we like to give the body time to to acknowledge and enjoy the good.
When we address problems, we stay on the edge of them–just the tiniest mini-drop of energy is plenty.
Together, client and practitioner track the physical sensations, images, and thoughts that arise in connection to the challenging situations. We allow them to complete, and allow time for that completion to integrate.
The best part? When they’re gone? They’re gone.
Sessions are conducted either online via Zoom or in-person in St. Johnsbury, VT. Sessions last about an hour. It is recommended to take a nap afterwards. I make these sessions available at a special sliding scale price, as things are so hard right now for so many people.