I offer relational body psychotherapy for anyone who would like to go on a therapeutic journey. You may be coming with a specific situation or issue that is calling for attention, with a feeling or symptom that you would like to understand, or perhaps with a more general sense that you need support. Together we can explore whatever is emerging for you.
This approach may be particularly relevant if you are seeking a renewed or deeper connection with your body, or would like to invite more creativity and spontaneity into your life. However we can work with anything that needs therapeutic support, whether or not it obviously relates to your body.
I welcome those who are interested in starting off in therapy, as well as those who have previously been in therapy of any kind. Even if you have already been in a ‘talking therapy’ or counselling, this deeply experiential approach offers ways of exploring through the body and learning about yourself beyond words and stories. Working through the body simply means giving more space to our bodily experiences. I have found this to be the most direct and yet easeful way to listen to what’s going on.
My therapeutic approach is based in Embodied-Relational Therapy, a process-oriented approach to relational body psychotherapy (Totton, 2005, 2009, 2015), and Somatic Movement Education, a relational, developmental, sensorimotor approach to working with embodiment. One of the main therapeutic practices I use is Focusing – a simple way of bringing mindful presence to our experiencing, which supports the emergence of therapeutic change (Gendlin, 1996, Cornell, 2013).
How does it help?
When we feel stuck or overwhelmed, the forward movement of our lives may seem lost. Working through the body we can discover the felt sense of any situation and, listening to the details of what’s happening, we can follow the processes that are trying to happen without the need to explain, understand or even have a story about them. This allows us to find support in ourselves and locate the resources we need to carry forward what needs to be carried forward.
My approach is relational. Through our embodiment, we are always in relationship, with other humans and with the other-than-human. Our bodies carry our patterns of relating to others in the ways they organise, including our yearnings for contact with others and our deepest fears about it. In witnessing the dance of relationship we can encounter our habits, preferences and needs, learn more about how these have come to be, and see how our development, including traumatic experiences, might shape our current relationships, including the therapeutic relationship. This allows us to explore the challenges we face in being just as we are and opens up the potential for more choice in our ways of being, inviting more awareness, spontaneity, relaxation, fluidity, energy, ease and creativity into our lives.
By receiving you as a whole, embodied being rather than, for example, just a problem you have or a role you fulfill, the therapeutic relationship can offer you the space to find more support for the parts of yourself that may be seeking expression and be a support through a process of growth. In meeting yourself deeply you may find your own ways to be more resourced in meeting others.
What happens in a session?
Each session is shaped by your needs, so we make our own path as we go rather than following a typical structure. We will probably speak for some of the time but we might also find ways to work with the breath, sounding, movement, guided somatic awareness, art making, play, being with nature, and bodywork, or in any other ways we choose that allow you to discover what perhaps cannot be said very easily. Whichever channels we use, my approach encourages you to trust and learn from your own experience.
This supports your personal development and growth through the practice of:
⁃ Cultivating deeper awareness of your self and a greater capacity for self-reflection
⁃ Discovering embodied resources
⁃ Learning skillful ways to listen to your inner process
⁃ Experiencing your embodiment and recognising the ways in which your development patterns your experiencing
⁃ Finding support for more functional and expressive movement of your body
⁃ Witnessing how your somatic process of living supports your being in the world.
I offer a safe, supportive and receptive space for playful experimentation and creative self-enquiry, working at your own pace, free from judgement, interpretation, diagnosis, advice, or the need to achieve anything. In my experience, when such conditions are offered by another person we have the potential to relax into a curious appreciation of our own nature and find the courage to be ourselves – however difficult that may be – in the unfolding dance of our lives.
For practical information and next steps please see here.
Embodied creative coaching
I also offer this approach as creative coaching for those who would like to support their creative process, whether they are involved professionally or otherwise, in solo work or collaborations, in projects or an ongoing practice. This can help through being a space for embodied reflective process and creative self-exploration so that you can learn more about yourself in relation to your work, supporting you in your creative journey. Please contact me for more information.