Somatic Psychotherapy & Co-Regulating Touch Bodywork can change your life in real and significant ways.
Welcome. I’m glad you found your way here, and I hope I can offer you some support and space to be with what you are experiencing.
I see therapy as a personal opportunity for each of us. It’s a chance to pay attention to and connect with yourself, be present with yourself, understand your past, explore your patterns, beliefs and behaviours more deeply, and grow as a human being. If you are looking for new ways to experience your relationships, body, health, emotions, work, family or any other aspects of your life – relational somatic psychotherapy could be a helpful approach.
This work supports & transforms. We work with relational patterns, body sensations, nervous system patterns, memories from the past, feelings and behaviours in the present, and the meaning you’ve been making of all that has been happening to you in your life.
I intend for this work to be an invitation to turn towards your true needs and to accept ourselves more fully. This is an integrative approach to somatic trauma resolution – an opportunity to become curious about the exploration of your own body – increasing your awareness of habits and patterns and how this awareness transforms chronic symptoms and troubling feelings for the better.
As we find the courage to be with our habits, body sensations, feelings, patterns and beliefs, we can find the promise of an open heart and an enlarged life—a life that is secure in enough self-knowledge to free us from the roles that often reflect childhood needs and hopes.
Relational Somatic Psychotherapy is a unique blend of traditional and contemporary approaches to bring your body into practice – to see your true self clearly and allow new awareness, aliveness and flowing energy within your body-mind & heart.
Together, we will attend to you as a whole person – a nurturing, whole body health approach – uncovering the impact of the past and of your daily choices on your body – as an emotional and physical being.
This work is informed by the Neurobiology of Attachment, Relational Patterns within Our Family of Origin, Nervous System Regulation Patterns & Trauma Physiology, Somatic Trauma Resolution, Integrative Body Awareness and Our Sensory Processing System. With deep grounding in Body-Centred, Embodied Healing Practices – and the methods of Relational Psychotherapy, Somatic Psychology, Somatic Experiencing, Body-Mind Centering, Trauma Touch Work, Somatic Sexuality and Intimacy, Somatic Healing for Trauma & Sexual Trauma, Functional Medicine, Zen Buddhist approaches and Eastern Medicine healing practices.
Grounded in a somato-relational-psycho-social model expands the role of the body to include anatomy, physiology, kinesiology, movement, and posture. Principles of embodiment include somatic organization, subjective experience of self, and basic human needs for attachment and defense – allowing us to explore what is happening within you in as much depth as you would like to.
Being in our bodies means experiencing life through our feelings, sensations and interactions. The word Soma — the ‘living body’ — signifies how we shape and form our body.
Your body wants to heal itself. You will learn how to calm and restore flow within your nervous system. You will learn about defensive patterns that may be blocking loving connection and how to heal the pain inside your heart.
When we are born, we are naturally alive and present in our body. Our breath is unrestricted and we breathe with our whole being; our movement responses are immediate, spontaneous, authentic and appropriate. We are constantly in motion, relating directly, without thinking, from our being – to others and to the world around us.
Over time we lose some of our aliveness and presence. Our lived history, experiences, attitudes and beliefs become held in the tissues of the physical body as it forms itself around the events of our lives and our responses to these events. In the process, we can feel trapped or stuck – like prisoners of our past – and our range of movement and capacity for experiencing aliveness can become limited. We forget what our infant self knew: how to feel good and happy, no matter what – and how to self-regulate our bodies and embody well-being.
We heal, together. In relationship and in community.
Relational Somatic Psychotherapy makes it possible to transform fear, trauma, anxiety, depression, addiction, eating disorders, low self-confidence, self-destructive habits, childhood emotional neglect and limiting beliefs. It enables us to find support for our dreams and to rediscover passion, freedom and joy.
We all have a choice. A choice to choose life in a more abundant sense—to stop sleepwalking through driven, busy days and find the courage to face ourselves and to work in partnership with our deepest potential in their struggle to be born.
A psychotherapist can support you and allow you to step into a new future – to choose the life you really want to live from the truth held in your body. You may be feeling emotional or physical discomfort – and that this is keeping you from living the life you would like. I believe that we are inherently gifted – and biologically programmed to find ways to successfully negotiate and integrate the challenges life brings. I offer a sincere intention to witness, and provide gentle presence and encouragement, so that you can reconnect to your own innate body-mind wisdom.
I bring a spirit of curiosity, openness and creativity to my work with clients – integrating relational understanding with a somatic (body-focused) approach. This includes reflection on all aspects of the whole person – body, mind and heart. I am committed to creating and holding a safe space, where people feel supported. I work with people who are experiencing stress, exhaustion, trauma, relationship concerns, anxiety, chronic illness or pain, depression, eating disorders,and life and career transitions.
Creating a connected, one-on-one relationship within psychotherapy will help you to understand yourself ‘in relationship’ to others. You will not only learn about yourself in all the ways you hope to, you will also learn about yourself from what happens between us during our therapeutic relationship.
When working with an empathetic therapist, you will develop more fully into your truth and increase your capacity for self-esteem development. You will find your ‘centre’ and operate from this grounded, solid and alive place within you.
You will increase your capacity to become more real and integrated in all of your relationships – where your energy is always flowing into connection. You will also bring yourself more fully and clearly into your relationships – and will enhance your self, the other and the relationship as a whole.
Relationships are one of the greatest sources of both satisfaction and stress in our lives. Relationships often act as mirrors, and they can reflect for us what we need to learn about ourselves.
Relationships can be intimate, as with partners, family, close friends and lovers – or they can also be more casual as is often the case with professional and social relationships. No matter what the situation, all of our relationships are fertile ground for intense feelings. Frequently these feelings result in misunderstandings, anger, hurt, disappointment, distress, helplessness and despair – and they are a sensitive source of personal pain as well as great joy.
Emotional Understanding and Heart-Centred Awakening
Whether you are in a relationship now or have difficulty forming different types of relationships, this can be a major source of emotional distress.
External factors, which we can’t avoid in life, sometimes combined with unrecognized early attachment issues can cause us confusion and pain. If the pain were physical, most people wouldn’t hesitate to go to a professional.
Psychotherapy can address the underlying causes of emotional difficulties and help to transform your experience of your symptoms.
Our individual struggles and needs are different, and there is no one answer for everyone. Becoming aware of and understanding your feelings and behaviors by yourself and within relationships, are the first steps towards enabling you to bring positive changes to your life and to your overall well-being.
You may be struggling in your relationship, suffering from anxiety or depression, experiencing low self-esteem, suffering from an eating disorder or grieving a loss. You may also be in transition and facing questions of identity, meaning or purpose in your life.
You may be facing familiar, nagging feelings of unworthiness or stuckness and ‘just going through the motions of life’. You may feel angry, sad or frustrated at the patterns in your life. You may want to move towards lasting change. You could be facing a crisis but you don’t have to be.
You may be suffering from a loss of connection with others – and you may feel numb, without knowing exactly why. Your self-esteem and feelings of well-being may be suffering.
When facing difficulties in our lives, it can be helpful to engage with someone who listens deeply, understands and helps you make sense of your experience.
This process will guide you through the dark places that are negatively impacting your life and help you move through and beyond them. Together we will identify your difficulties and help you face your challenges in new ways.
Everything is possible. Awareness is the first step.
I will be both supportive and active and help you create new kinds of understanding and possibility, so you can progress, at your pace, to meet your goals. I will help you increase your awareness, aliveness and joy.
You can choose how we work together:
- In a chair – sessions can address emotional struggles, chronic pain, and relationship concerns, and support during life transitions. I use a variety of methods, including verbal dialogue, Relational Psychotherapy, Integrated Body Psychotherapy, Embodied Mindfulness and somatic practices. (in-person or via Skype)
- On the floor (thick padded mat) – sessions are a hands-on form based on body-systems work, somatic movement therapy. Movement sessions can address chronic pain, holding patterns that cause excessive tension, injury recovery, energy system imbalances and emotional blocks.
Read more about Areas of Specialty here – Couples Therapy, Eating Disorders Therapy, Trauma Therapy, Career Transitions, Midlife Transitions – Divorce Support & Recovery, and Family of Origin/Working with Your Shadow.
How Love Feels
Soft, warm, fuzzy and open. That’s how it feels. Love.
Deep, dark, and safe, I’m surrounded.
There’s no holding back or heaviness about what’s next – just breezy abandon.
The bolts have loosened on the rusty limbs, and the heat warms the stiff places.
No need to hold on, hold back, clench, stiffen, or fear.
There’s only the ripple and waves of this moment – nothing else matters.
Yesterdays and tomorrows are transparent and free, unattached.
Leaves flutter in the breeze and brush across my skin.
In the distance the wind rustles.
When I sink deeper into myself, I smile.
I feel my feet on the ground, and my eyes tingle.
I rest centred in the beauty of now.