Working with Emotional Patterns Held in the Body – Restoring Core Nervous System Regulation – Setting the Conditions for Embodied Safety – Feeling Safe, Soft & Supported – Integrating Trauma & Understanding the Chemistry of Stress.

January 19, 2021

“We are all inherently hardwired to heal – we have an innate ability to overcome the effects of trauma and unleash the core aliveness we all possess.” ~ Diane Poole Heller

Being human means living in a body. Most of us, who have experienced some form of trauma – neglect, abuse, early developmental childhood trauma, complex trauma, and oppression – are not aware we’re holding it in our body.

Trauma is often talked about as solely impacting our ‘mental health’. And while our mental health may be impacted when we experience trauma, our physical health, bodies, relationships and work are effected too.

Let’s explore trauma and the body; the stories it holds, the memories it carries, our connection (or disconnection) from it – the conditioning we want to unravel – and the ways we live in our bodies, while living with trauma.

Creating new pathways out of old patterns, I offer you an atmosphere of connection and collaboration that supports moving towards a greater sense of well-being. This is created by cultivating a sense of safety, non-judgment, attunement, a resonant field that holds the inherent and intrinsic belief that everyone can heal. This work supports the body’s/nervous system’s ability to regulate and return to it’s organic nature.  When we can align to all aspects of our being, we can experience more resilience and a greater capacity to be with the challenges and stressors of life.

It is universally accepted that infants have emotions well before they have developed the cognitive skills to remember, assess, or name them. There are somatic and behavioural patterns that are non-cognitive expressions of emotion, and they can be accessed using somatic interventions. Our emotions are basic to animal/human organisms, and they occur before we adapt to our experiences.

During our work together, you will begin to engage in the patterns affiliated with your emotions such as fear, anger, sadness, excitement, gratitude, and joy. For each of these emotions, we will consider things such as:

  • How your body changes, processes and/or holds your emotions
  • Behaviours associated with each emotion
  • Information conveyed by the emotion (watch out, change something, accept something, life is great, when others witness you)
  • How do you respond to each emotion? Expressed, unexpressed or suppressed

Understanding the Chemistry of Stress in Your Body

Once a stress or danger has been positively identified in the mass of messages converging on the hypothalamus (an important part of our brain) – the hypothalamus secretes a chemical into the bloodstream, and then quickly circulates into the pituitary gland – when it triggers a second chemical (ACTH) that is stored there. When the blood carrying this ACTH reaches the adrenal glands, chemicals are released into the bloodstream.
 
The most understood stress chemicals in our bloodstream are adrenaline and cortisol – and they react with many tissues in our body to trigger and anticipate an emergency. All of our stress chemicals precipitate a number of changes in neural activities, tissues and behaviour, all designed to help in an emergency – our fight, flight, freeze responses – which prepare us for conflict and escape and/or to keep us hidden for our safety. There is an immediate arousal or hyperarousal of the nervous system, stimulates it to a state of alertness.
 
This hyperarousal sets the stage for an increase in muscle tone and a facilitation of sensory reflexes and muscular contractions, setting up our body with an extreme readiness to act. In addition, respiration deepens and accelerates, the heart rate increases and blood pressure rises. Our blood flow is directed away from stomach and intestines, towards the skeletal muscles and the nervous system. We also stop digesting the food in our stomach and intestines and we begin digesting cells in specific parts of the body.
 
In our modern lives, our pituitary/adrenal stress response is significant because even though we need our bodies to prepare to fight, flee or freeze when we are in actual danger, our bodies are also perceiving danger, when there is no true threat. This means that our bodies are experiencing high levels of stress – making our bodies work too hard on the inside – even when we aren’t in danger. Our bodies exhibit an adrenal response when we fly in planes, await surgery, anticipate final exams, experience the unknown in a pandemic, go through a divorce, when a loved one dies, driving in rush hour traffic, during job experiences, and any experience so novel that we don’t know what to expect – we can experience a sustained hypervigilance response in our body.
 
Our body is always trying to protect us and keep us safe – and our fight, flight and freeze survival responses are happening and staying stuck on – ON – causing us to have a hyper-stimulated nervous system – creating a large incidence of chronic emotional and physical conditions and diseases that are so prevalent in our modern world – we may not even consider that we, or someone we love, may be experiencing this type of stress-related symptoms, conditions or disease.
 
Co-Regulating Touch Bodywork for Trauma, Trauma-Focused Eye Work, The 7-Point Protocol and NeuroAffective Touch – have been developed to renegotiate trauma held in the body and create the conditions to rewire of nervous system and brain responses, shift the onset of stress hormones – creating more opportunities to experience feelings of ease and energetic flow in the body and the body/mind.
 
I work somatically doing bodywork with clients in-person and online – supporting the integration and recovery of early developmental (hidden) trauma, relational trauma, physical injuries, pain and fear of pain – along with these elements (and more) of the healing process to:

  • Understanding the somatics of our survival/threat response in response to pain and healing
  • Self-protective responses in response to pain
  • Perception of threat and non-threat in the body
  • Understanding the role of interoception in perception of threat and safety
  • Understanding and sensing your survival response and how this may be impeding your recovery
  • Neuroception: building a felt sense of safety in the body

What to Expect During a Session

To begin, we go slowly. Attuning to your experience – what is happening in your body and what cannot be seen on the surface – with an understanding that there are parts of us that may be hidden due to hidden trauma – and that need a slow, nurturing pace to feel safe.

For true and deep emotional and physical healing, we can’t leave our body and how it feels and responds, out of the process. Each person needs something very specific in their healing journey, which is why it is so important to have a customized approach with sessions that are specifically tailored for you.

Your body doesn’t have energy – it is energy. When we allow traumatic stress that is contained in our nervous system to begin to move through our system – flow begins to happen in our body and we feel more energetic, grounded, healthy and alive.

For those who would like to focus on a body-focused, somatic approach, we can do this by sitting in chairs across from each other or where you are lying on a table. When you are sitting in a chair, we can do some talk therapy, and you may also be asked if you are open to closing your eyes and noticing your feelings, emotions and body sensations that are happening for you in each moment.

For those who would like to do Co-Regulating Touch Bodywork for Trauma – sessions consist of lying on a table with eyes closed – and I offer touch on several areas of the body: the head, stress organs, the belly, muscles, organs and joints in the body. There may also be some movement involved. Sessions are done fully clothed.

Each session is one-hour unless we are doing an extended session (which could be 1.5 or 2 hours in length) – and is unique depending on what you are experiencing on that day and would like to focus on during a session – we want to tune in and understand what’s really going on in your body – beyond pathology and diagnoses – to allow your body to move into a flow state, rather than to remain stuck in a stress response state – during the session and in the hours and days afterwards. healing hidden trauma.

Co-Regulating Touch Bodywork for Trauma sessions allow you to pay attention the sensations of your body, and to notice what you feel, sense and notice within when you do. We will invite ease and support into your nervous system and body – providing nurturing comfort and care. Each session builds upon itself – you develop a sacred container for emotions to arise and build resilience in the nervous system, which in turn affects how you feel about yourself and how your energy flows.

This body-based method helps you heal physical, emotional and psychological shock states, early developmental trauma states, chronic stress and long-held trauma. It works directly with the autonomic nervous system to discharge stress and trauma and balance and restore equilibrium.

Prior to your first session, you will need to fill in some paperwork and bring it with you to your first session to give me a sense of what is happening for you right now in your body, mind and heart.

Have you or someone you care about been struggling with mysterious or stubborn symptoms or feelings that don’t seem to resolve without medication, after visiting your health care provider? Our primary health care system is not poised to recognize the symptoms of hidden trauma and are not able to work deeply with you at the level of the nervous system to heal, process and resolve trauma in our systems.

This is why it’s so important to learn about and share information with friends and loved ones – because Somatic Experiencing (SE) and Co-Regulating Touch for Trauma bodywork – works deeply at the level of the nervous system to heal stubborn symptoms for lasting results that evade traditional treatment – without drugs or medication.

This work helps to restore core regulation – your symptoms are a natural response to a dysregulated nervous system.

Together, we work deeply in your nervous system to uncover and resolve:

1. How your family of origin attachment patterns effect your nervous system
2.
How your trauma physiology processes survival threat in your nervous system
3.
How your nervous system processes sensory information in your body

Learn how to identify sensations and feelings in your body – and allow feelings of safety and support to run freely through your nervous system.

With support, your nervous system will complete the steps of trauma resolution including:

  • Nervous system arousal – a survival threat response to stimuli
  • Noticing threat – knowing when we’re safe and when we’re not
  • Mobilizing a response aligned to the presented threat
  • Restoring coherence in your system – notice that you’ve survived and the threat is over
  • Processing sensation in your nervous system – and inviting rest & digestion
  • Noticing something new in your environment – open space for new energy to flow

Collaboration and connection is key. We are not meant to go-it alone. Increase the state of flowing energy in your body – and find relief from chronic anxiety, stress, sleeplessness, disordered eating, relational struggles, chronic health concerns, chronic pain or illness.

We heal in relationship – when we bring our struggles into the light – your willingness to be vulnerable is a sign of strength. I will help you learn about and track symptoms in your body and nervous system – as well as how hidden trauma and your relational history may be contributing to current struggles, feelings and chronic symptoms, so you can live a more balanced and joyful life.

Many of us don’t have a felt sense of support in our bodies – and we need that to heal from the emotional and physical patterns that we are holding.  Allow yourself to practice a felt-sense of safety and feel connected to yourself– deep in the core of your being.

In-between sessions, you will practice and become more aware of the following within yourself:

  • Somatic & emotional awareness
  • Awareness of boundaries & limits
  • Awareness of nervous system activation patterns
  • Notice and pay attention to your stress response / relaxation response / pain response
  • Practice & Integrate Developmental Movements and Reflexes
  • Learn and practice emotional regulation
  • Paying attention to your felt sense of safety and the sensations in your body
Who you are at your core has always been awake, alive, completely fresh and entirely at peace. This is the sacred work of healing trauma and waking up to your life.

The work I offer is rooted in the belief that your body holds the wisdom you need to heal and grow.
As an integrative relational somatic psychotherapist, somatics practitioner, co-regulating touch bodywork for trauma practitioner and neuroaffective touch practitioner, my role is to cultivate a space in which you can show up and practice deepening your capacity to feel your sensations in the present moment. Through this presence and being with, I accompany you in metabolizing trauma and integrating experiences.

Our bodies are intelligent. They hold our personal, ancestral and collective stories.

Can we honour and love our bodies as the miracles that they are?

Can we inhabit our skins and bones and find home within?
Can we open ourselves to become conduits for aliveness expressing itself through us?

This somatic healing work is offered both in-person and online.
Get in touch with the gifts of inhabiting your body – and I will answer any questions your have about working together – along with inviting you into feelings of safety, groundedness, clarity and support.

I look forward to being with you.

with love from my heart, Kim xoxoxo
hello@kimcochrane.ca / www.kimcochrane.ca

Whole Body Health & Well-Being from the Inside Out.
Deep healing at the level of the nervous system enables you to explore and expand your inner landscape where self – confidence and inner agency reside. When you heal your nervous system, you can more readily access deeper ways of knowing and being that include intuition, imagination, sensuality, and the subtle body of emotions.

Get in touch to learn more about working with me – hello@kimcochrane.ca / www.kimcochrane.ca

What to Expect During a Whole Body Health Somatic Practice Co-Regulating Touch Bodywork for Trauma / NeuroAffective Touch Session

For true emotional and physical healing, we can’t leave our body and how it feels and responds, out of the process. Each person needs something very specific in their healing journey, which is why it is so important to have a customized approach with sessions that are specifically tailored for you – a combination of emotionally-focused psychotherapy and body-focused Co-Regulating Touch Bodywork for Trauma.

Your body doesn’t have energy – it is energy. When we allow traumatic stress that is contained in our nervous system to begin to move through our system – flow begins to happen in our body and we feel more energetic, grounded, healthy and alive.

We explore our fluid bodies through the language of sensation, co-regulating touch,and  subtle movement. We have the opportunity of allowing time to slow down, to notice, let go and shed that which needs to shed, and to come through anew and refreshed.

For those who would like to focus on a body-focused, somatic approach, we begin by talking about your background, symptoms and history. We do this online and or in-person by sitting in chairs across from each other or you lie on your back on a table. When you are sitting in a chair, we can do some talk therapy, and you may also be asked if you are open to closing your eyes and noticing your feelings, emotions and body sensations that are happening for you in each moment.

For those who would like to do Co-Regulating Touch Bodywork for Trauma Session – sessions consist of lying on a table with eyes closed – and I offer touch on several areas of the body: the head, stress organs, the belly, and joints in the body.

Sessions are done fully clothed. Each session is one-hour, unless we are doing an extended session – and is unique depending on what you are experiencing on that day and would like to focus on during a session – we want to tune in and understand what’s really going on in your body – beyond pathology and diagnoses – to allow your body to move into a flow state, rather than to remain stuck in a stress response state – during the session and in the hours and days afterwards.

NEW OFFERING – The Safe & Sound Protocol (SSP) is a five-day auditory intervention for adults and children – using headphones – that is intended to accelerate the effectiveness of other modalities by preparing the client’s emotional and physiological state. Dr. Stephen Porges (developer of The Safe & Sound Protocol & of The Polyvagal Theory) explains that we need a calm autonomic/physiological state for health, growth and restoration, and achieving this becomes the foundation of an effective therapy.  The Safe & Sound Protocol is a way to support a change  in your physiological state; opening the system to further neural change and improvement for other therapies that follow. The process is designed to reduce stress and auditory sensitivity while enhancing social engagement and resilience. The intervention uses prosodic vocal music that has been filtered to train the middle ear muscles to focus in on the frequency envelope of human speech. You’ll find you are better able to feel calm – less chronically stressed and/or anxious.  Clients who have experienced long-held trauma and are healing from PTSD, troubling chronic health concerns, chronic pain and troubling chronic emotional responses, can experience an increased sense of safety in their physiological state.

Other Offerings – Nurture Surround Healing Session– 90-minute In-Person session. Allow yourself to slow down and experience deep healing. You are deeply supported on the table with weighted blankets, soft pillows and bean bags on your body – you choose what is most comfortable for you – providing soft, nurturing care – feeling supported and held – with choice. We will take time to attune to your body’s core needs and comfort at a deep level. Your needs are important. I will use a variety of touch skills with you – and invite you to place a hand wherever you would like to on your body – and to pause, slow down and notice what you feel.

Using mind-body skills to stabilize your nervous system – befriending, grounding, slowing down, tracking and resourcing. We will listen to your body’s narrative while utilizing body-mind emotion dialogue. We will explore biological survival strategies and process historical trauma by creating moment-to-moment interpersonal experiences of safe connection. We will utilize non-cognitive senses of relational connection – auditory, visual, movement, and touch – co-creating manageable ways to defuse internal feelings of pressure, anxiety and stress.

Family Trauma Imprint – 90-minute – in-person or online Zoom session – an opportunity to get to the roots of intergenerational trauma patterns & begin a path towards relational & relationship healing.

Discover the Inner Mother – Healing the Mother Wound – uncover your family dynamics and trauma history – this is an opportunity to strengthen your internal relationship with your mother, father and extended family – in ways that contribute to healing – get in touch to schedule an online or in-person session – hello@kimcochrane.ca / www.kimcochrane.ca

Sessions for Individuals & Couples – an invitation for you – to slow down and feel the strength of a supportive resource, move beyond blame and notice how our nervous system states inform our interactions with our partner, feel present in your body, to unwind patterns of anxiety, depression, anger, hopelessness, chronic stress & pain, trauma, regulate your nervous system, to cultivate trust in your moment-to-moment experience, your naturally wise heart, and your capacity to connect to yourself, those you love and the love that surrounds us.

Somatic Body Learning & Practice and Somatic Experiencing Trauma Co-Regulating TouchBodywork for Trauma sessions are available for you now. Waking you up to Somatic Resilience & Regulation – the innate wisdom of your body, healing inherited trauma patterns, feeling yourself below the level of thought, and accessing your full beingness in flowing, fluid motion.

Get in touch to learn more about The Safe & Sound Protocol (SSP), Nurture Surround & Family Systems Imprint Sessions & Individual Body-Focused Therapy Sessions, and Co-Regulating Touch Bodywork for Trauma, NeuroAffective Touch – The Anxiety, Stress & Trauma Restorative Clinic – in-person  and/or online – and to set up a time to work together:   hello@kimcochrane.ca

The Anxiety, Stress & Trauma Restorative Clinic:
Creating Well-Being Through Nervous System Regulation.
Heal Relational Trauma – Break the Cycle of Inherited Family Trauma.
Nurturing Connection, Restoration & Building Resilience.

Easing the Body ~ Calming the Mind ~ Opening the Heart.
Somatic Experiencing ~ Somatic Practices ~ Co-Regulating Touch Bodywork for Trauma ~ Movement Practices ~ Whole Body Systems Approach for Healing Inflammation.

Somatic work can be done effectively online, as well as in person – online sessions are available for those who would prefer not to come in to the office at this time, for those who live far away from the office, or prefer to work from your own home – hello@kimcochrane.ca

Working together enables everyone who is willing to do the work an opportunity to decrease feelings of anxiety, pain, depression, chronic stress, pain or illness – as well decrease the chatter in the mind, and ground your mind and body with the depth of the intelligence found in the body. Experience lasting somatic transformation and feelings of calm, peace and wholeness – within your own body and within your relationships.

You will learn to feel and by doing so, you will move towards whole body health and well-being that you can feel within you.

hello@kimcochrane.ca / www.kimcochrane.ca

“Learning to rely upon and trust the intuitive wisdom of your body – as you’ve been depending upon and trusting your cognitive mind – marks a homecoming. Tissue and bone, cell and fiber, our bodies carry an unbiased desire for a genuine conscious relationship with the soul.” ~ Paula M. Reeves, Ph.D.

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Testimonial 1

When I came to you I felt confused, disconnected and broken. Now, I'm on my way to feeling whole. Thank you.
Kim Cochrane
2016-10-06T10:59:12-04:00
When I came to you I felt confused, disconnected and broken. Now, I'm on my way to feeling whole. Thank you.

Testimonial 2

I’m so glad I’m giving myself space to explore what’s happening in my life and to understand my feelings.
Kim Cochrane
2016-10-06T10:59:51-04:00
I’m so glad I’m giving myself space to explore what’s happening in my life and to understand my feelings.

Testimonial 3

I've wanted to do this for a while and I'm so glad I did - I trust myself more now, I feel more calm and open - working together has changed the course of my life.

Kim Cochrane
2016-10-06T11:00:16-04:00
I've wanted to do this for a while and I'm so glad I did - I trust myself more now, I feel more calm and open - working together has changed the course of my life.
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Kim Cochrane

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