Somatic Therapy Worksheets
When we endure painful or traumatic experiences, our bodies often respond by manifesting symptoms like racing heart, sore muscles, queasy stomach or headache. These physical reactions may also be accompanied by emotional distress or nightmares as well as feelings of being overly tired. When this occurs, our bodies often communicate that we require help in processing these memories so we can heal and move on from them.
Somatic therapy worksheets are an invaluable tool for exploring your body and senses, especially during times of trauma or stress. Counselors, psychologists, therapists and social workers may use them as well to better comprehend the connection between mind and body.
The body’s five senses (see our Somatic Therapy 5 Senses Worksheet PDF) are essential for getting to the root cause of trauma and emotional pain. They enable you to identify physical sensations causing emotional discomfort and how these are connected to specific memories or feelings.
Begin by sitting comfortably and noting where you feel tension – this could include your back, legs or neck. Next, take note of what external elements bring you a sense of calm (e.g., a drink, favorite sweater, warm place to rest or an experience with someone special).
Once you understand what your body is telling you, it’s time to find ways to relax and heal both your emotions and physicality. Experiment with breathing techniques as well as meditation on your senses of sight, sound, touch, smell and taste to find what works best for both of you.
A therapist trained in somatic therapy can guide you toward the appropriate techniques and exercises that help release stored energy from your body. Some therapists use eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) for this purpose.
You might also want to consider yoga or other types of exercise as they can help relax muscles and improve circulation. Furthermore, speaking to your doctor about whether chiropractic appointments are available may be beneficial for those suffering from chronic muscle pain due to trauma or other conditions.
Somatic Experiencing (SE) is a body-centered psychotherapy designed to help patients and clinicians process traumatic experiences. It was pioneered by Peter Levine, a trauma therapist who discovered the human nervous system has an inherent capacity for processing stress or trauma-inducing events.
SE(r) is a gentle, body-centered and compassionate approach to healing that has proven successful in treating PTSD, chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia and other conditions.
In a somatic therapy session, the therapist may employ various techniques to help their client process sensations related to trauma and release energy stored in their bodies. Titration and pendulation are two techniques similar to chemistry terms which describe adding one solution slowly into another until neutralized.