Somatic Experiencing® focuses on your inner perceptions and experiences to help you heal trauma.

What is Somatics?

Soma means body. So, somatic literally means “of the body.” But somatics involves a bit more—a shift of perspective.

Soma refers to your own felt-sense of yourself. It’s your experience of your body as sensed from the inside, rather than the “idea” of a body as viewed from the outside.

Somatic, then—whether it’s in bodywork, movement, or psychotherapy—focuses on your inner perceptions and experiences. These include physical sensations, emotions, imagery, and thoughts. They also include your awareness of your body in space and in motion and any “null zones,” areas where you lack sensation or awareness.

When we pay attention, without judgment, to all of your inner perceptions in the moment, the body can tell the full story of an injury, pain, or trauma. Often, this story has some surprising roots. And by acknowledging them, much deeper healing and transformation becomes possible.

What is Somatic Experiencing®?

Somatic Experiencing® is a powerful, body-focused approach to healing trauma. It is based on the idea that trauma gets trapped in the body, causing a wide range of symptoms and problems. Healing it, therefore, needs to start with the body.

To understand this approach, it helps to look at the natural world. In the wild, animals typically don’t get traumatized. If a zebra manages to escape a lion pride, for example, you’ll see it stand and shake off the remaining adrenalin. You might also see it buck or kick to dispel the urge to fight back. Then it will go back to calmly grazing.

Humans, though, after surviving a threat, don’t often let ourselves do these natural behaviors. We tamp down the trembling and shaking. We suppress the urge to punch or kick or run. And then all of that massive survival energy has no outlet. It implodes and starts cycling through our nervous system, leaving us traumatized.

To transform trauma at the body level, we first must tune in to the body.

Somatic Experiencing® practitioners use body-oriented verbal skills to help you tune in to the body’s language of sensations and emotions, imagery and sense memory, and movement and observable behaviors. Once you can sense the way a trauma is held in your body—like as a buzzing energy—it can start to transform. Stuck energies can discharge, frozen places thaw, and incomplete defensive gestures complete.

Somatic Experiencing® (SE) requires three years of training for certification. It is practiced by many types of professionals, from bodyworkers and therapists to yoga instructors and teachers. Each practitioner typically blends SE skills with their own area of expertise. Many practitioners also offer remote Somatic Experiencing® sessions.

Have Questions? Ready to Get Started?

My practice, located in western Massachusetts, is entirely remote. All distance healing is based on craniosacral therapy and somatic dialogue skills such as Somatic Experiencing®. Reach out to schedule or learn more!