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Somatic Psychotherapy

My belief is in the blood and flesh as being wiser than the intellect. The body unconscious is where life bubbles up in us. It is how we know that we are alive, alive to the depths of our souls and in touch somewhere with the vivid reaches of the cosmos -- D. H. Lawrence.

Somatic Psychology is the study of the mind-body interface that values the body as a key to understanding our experience. It has its roots in the marriage between psychology and physiology. The term is of Greek origin, derived from the integration of psyche, referring to the mind/soul, and soma referring to the body. Whilst grounded in psychotherapeutic models and experience, somatic psychotherapy goes beyond working verbally and includes experience felt in the body. 

The mind and the body are not only interdependent but are inseparable. Anything that is experienced can impact us on physical, intellectual, emotional, energetic, interpersonal, systemic, transpersonal and spiritual levels. Somatic Psychotherapy acknowledges and offers the potential to work on all these levels. It also recognises that painful experience is often stored in the body in the form of interrupted energy flow, truncated movement and tissue contraction. By working with cognitions, emotions, sensations, breath, impulses, symptoms and other body/mind experiences deep psychological wounding can be resolved and our bodies can feel more vibrant and more alive.

Somatic Psychotherapy supports deeper connection with mind and body. It is a journey that invites emotional expression, compassionate insight, movement and inner peace. By developing mindfulness of our inner and outer processes, somatic psychotherapy can help with any of the following:

§         Poor self esteem

§         Lack of confidence

§         Inability to connect with feelings or emotions

§         Difficulties with trust and intimacy

§         Difficulties establishing healthy boundaries

§         Difficulties developing healthy relationship

§         Feeling out of control

§         Loss & grief

§         Fear of conflict

§         Anxiety and stress

§         Depression

§         Physical, emotional or sexual abuse

§         Trauma

Any of these experiences can create imbalance in our daily lives and lead to emotional and psychological pain. They sometimes result in physical symptoms including high blood pressure, extreme arousal of the nervous system, weakened immune system, depleted energy and other physical disorders. Imbalance often has a negative impact on our relationships, and on our general perception of the world.

When emotions are repressed, denied or disallowed, our systems tend to become contracted and blocked, and this can create pain in relationship with ourselves and others. In this work individuals are sensitively helped to flesh out feelings, emotions and painful issues. When repressed or blocked emotions are released through awareness, breath and movement, inner balance can develop. When emotions are expressed safely, the inner system is more able to move freely in the development and maintenance of general health.

Somatic Psychotherapy provides opportunities and resources to explore behavioural patterns and  belief systems about ourselves that no longer serve us. Support is given to help shed the armour of patterned living, thereby allowing movement towards a state of health and vitality. The work provides a safe place where the pain of imbalance, conflict, wounding or trauma can be healed. 

The goal of Somatic Psychotherapy is to help heal from the pain of past wounding and traumatic events by offering the following:

§         Opportunities to explore feelings, thoughts and behaviours in a non judgemental manner

§         Non-verbal and verbal methods for sensitively bringing painful material to awareness

§         Integration of verbal and non-verbal expression

§         Work with sensations and movement, thus integrating the mind-body experience

§         Release of repressed feelings, anxieties and fears

§         Enhancement of the relationship to the body

§         Release of patterns of thoughts and behaviours that no longer support us

§         Promotion of intimacy and authenticity

§         Release from judgement and the inner critic

§         Release from the pain and other symptoms of trauma.

Four Celtic Spirals

For an appointment or further details you can contact Kate at:

087 234 4201


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Last Updated 07/11/10