Aaron Swartz MBACP, SEP Counselling, Psychotherapy & Somatic Experiencing for Brighton & Hove

SOMATIC EXPERIENCING

..........We are all affected by our environment. Hopefully we are resilient enough to take the the “rough with the smooth”. But often many of us have been affected by something in our lives which has left us in a state of not being able to completely relax or cope.
We are just not able to just be.

It is now understood that many of our difficulties in life can be rooted back to how our nervous system is responding. Anxiety, Stress , Depression are some of the symptoms of a nervous system that is unable to cope and self regulate.

Somatic Experiencing is a very gentle and powerful way of working with the nervous system to help it self regulate, and bring it back into a state of equilibrium. When this happens we feel safe and secure and generally are able to relax and feel comfortable in the world.

This is what a healthy nervous system looks like:


Somatic Experiencing. best healthy


Both the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous is able to regulate.
But with an unregulated nervous system, energy is blocked and unable to discharge.

Often the client may be stuck in relating to a current situation as if it was an old one.
This may be completely unconscious. For example an accident, or bereavement might trigger old feelings, old memories, or old sensations that have not been able to be discharged from the original event.

Or we may just feel ‘uncomfortable’, unable to relax, or ‘always on edge’. Although we may not understand why, something is activating this anxious energy. In order to discharge this anxious energy, we need to be able to access our self regulatory functions. (crying, shaking, sweating are a few of them). If we can’t, then the discharge cannot happen and we are left ‘traumatized’. The sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems are unable to work together and the activated energy is unable to discharge and this energy therefore gets stuck and can’t move.

We end up feeling the symptoms in the two boxes below:

Somatic Experiencing. best undischarged



Somatic Experiencing helps us to release the bound up energy that is still stuck in the nervous system.

When working with a client, I create a safe containing space that allows us to gently work with the nervous system to enable it do what it needs to do. I combine Psychotherapy with Somatic Experiencing. Clients report new feelings of well being and the ability to relax and finally feel comfortable with themselves and the world .


Here are two wonderful videos with Dr Peter Levine, the founder of Somatic Experiencing.

To see his video on "Trauma & Somatic Experiencing" just CLICK HERE

To see his video on "How the Body Releases Trauma and Restores Goodness" just CLICK HERE




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