If you are considering beginning therapy, you may wonder what to expect. Therapy is a creative process that unfolds in sometimes mysterious ways.
Some of it is a dialogue between two humans in a room. The challenges we face tend to center around two questions: how to live, and how to be with difficulty. The more present we are with ourselves in the therapeutic process, the more meaningful and ultimately healing the experience will be. But there is more.
We all are powerful creatures with the capacity to choose our reality, and to change it. If we look deeply, we will find that we are healthy and well at the core. We are all able to know and feel love, freedom, and peace. In our day to day life, we may forget this. We may have gotten used to limitations of who we can be in this life, and conditions for experiencing happiness.
In this sense, therapy is a practice of remembrance.
The goal of therapy is to reconnect you with your innate gifts of intuition and instinct. Self-knowledge and self-mastery grow from returning into relationship with ourselves, with our forgotten true nature, our neglected parts. When we heal ourselves, we also heal our relationships, our families, our work, and our greater community.
psychotherapy for california
how i work with trauma
Imagine trauma as a white silky thread that gets passed down, together with its medicine, from generation to generation. It wraps us in its very own understanding of love, trust, and care. Through trauma, we learn how to exist in another dimension, untouched by the cold hard experience of hitting the ground. It shows us how to keep ourselves safe in unimaginable situations. Trauma spells out reality for us when we are tired and scared to try another time.
In time, and often long after the original disruption, trauma will keep us hidden within and from our own life. Trauma keeps us at a distance from the people we love. We continue to follow the path of least inner charge, at the cost of fully becoming who we are in this life time. We keep walking a loopy serpentine across what used to be a mine field, what is now a recovering meadow, and it looks just as dangerous. Trauma rattles the core of our reason for being, until we become ghostly drifters in a world bursting with beauty and significance.
People who sense deeply are affected by trauma in specific ways. They are oftentimes what is clinically referred to as “the identified patient”: the person who will take on and carry and express the illness of the family system - the child who acts out - the black sheep - the one who is sent to therapy so nobody else has to. In a state of natural empathy, we were filled up with the pain of everyone we loved. We were not taught how to filter, regulate, or set boundaries. We did not know what that meant. We didn’t want to be heartless.
Trauma integration is a process that involves several steps:
1. The first is to bring down the original charge around a triggering experience. This can be done through techniques such as EMDR and Somatic Experiencing.
2. With complex trauma - that is, several traumatic experiences over a longer period of time -, we need to understand how trauma has shaped our nervous system. This part can take up a longer period of time. Especially for complex trauma, there are no quick fixes, and that’s ok.
3. The third element is the healthy practice of being in time and space, making sound choices that are in integrity with who we are and in respect of the people around us and our greater environment. It is the art of dwelling - of being present with reality in the large and in the small. And being present ultimately means to be in relationship with that which surrounds us.
Contemporary, cutting-edge research is slowly coming around to what wisdom traditions around the world have been teaching for millennia: The fact that trauma is passed down, through nature or through nurture, to the next generation. And so, whoever decides to step into the spiral of healing does not only effect their own health and wellbeing, but also that of the generations past and those to come.
It is my interest to walk with you on that path.
schedule your free 15-minute consultation
If you are considering therapy, I offer a complimentary 15-minute phone consultation for us to connect,
to learn more about what you are looking for,
and to answer any questions you might have for me.
I look forward to hearing from you!