Somatic Experiencing Therapy Victoria Bc
Somatic experiencing therapy is an alternative healing practice that uses bodily interventions to help people recover from trauma. This practice works on the theory that humans are designed to handle stress in their bodies, yet when they suffer trauma they may get stuck in a fight or flight response and develop symptoms like PTSD. Somatic experiencing practitioners utilize SIBAM (Sensation, Imagery, Behavior, Affect and Meaning) as a method for reconnecting clients with their bodies.
Somatic Experiencing is an effective treatment for many emotional and physical problems, such as anxiety, depression, and PTSD. This brief yet holistic therapy works on activating inner resources to heal emotional wounds.
This therapy is based on Peter Levine, PhD’s neurobiological approach to healing trauma. Through this process, clients learn how to rewire their brain for an adaptive stress response which leads to improved mental health and increased productivity levels.
SE is a short-term, naturalistic approach to trauma resolution that has been found to be particularly effective for people who have experienced sexual assault or other forms of violence. Therapists in over 40 countries have used SE to assist clients in overcoming emotional trauma and PTSD.
Lori Diachuk, founder and trainer at the Somatic Experiencing Institute in Victoria, says her school is the only provider of professional training in this field. The three-year program includes five courses (mixture of online and in person classes) followed by a mentorship phase that can last up to one year.
At this stage, students become acquainted with the theory of trauma and neurophysiology related to stressful experiences. Furthermore, they have hands-on learning opportunities where they can apply these principles in a secure setting with guidance from an experienced practitioner.
This training imparts skills such as grounding techniques, boundary development and self-regulation. Grounding involves sensing one’s feet on the earth and focusing on the present moment; it helps one feel grounded, calm their nervous system and define boundaries. Boundary development refers to setting clear limits while feeling protected by them.
MacLean emphasizes that SSE is on the rise in Canada, but it remains largely a west coast phenomenon. She emphasizes that this practice should not replace medical interventions.
She often works with women, helping them uncover their own gender identities. Sometimes this work leads them to realize they’ve spent more time and energy trying to please men than exploring what they truly desire in terms of sex.
She has found that this practice can be particularly helpful for women who have experienced difficulties in their sexual lives but don’t know why. These could have had an arduous birth or experienced traumaful sexual assault, for instance.
In addition to their personal sex needs, some of her clients are seeking ways to break the cycle of abuse or neglect they may have experienced. Furthermore, this work has allowed her to reconnect with her own mother through this work.