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the body as an ally

body psychotherapy

body psychotherapy and counseling services

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What is Body Psychotherapy?

Body Psychotherapy centralizes the connection between body and mind and explores their interactions in a therapeutic context. Our body as well as our memory holds our life history. Think of how we can tell if someone is “shy” or “outgoing” merely by watching them enter a room. When we include the body in the therapeutic process, we connect to a deeper level of understanding of the ways that we move through life and navigate relationships.

What is Core Energetics?

Core Energetics is a powerfully direct form of body psychotherapy that explores patterns we have held throughout our life.


It is often surprising to discover how much of our childhood feelings drive our adult choices and experiences. It’s natural for a child to attempt to protect themselves by making generalizations about life based on experiences and disappointments. And it’s also natural that these generalizations begin to act as templates that guide future interactions. At some point, the narrowness of these unconscious scripts becomes uncomfortably limiting. Revealing these scripts offers us an opportunity to repair behavioral and relational patterns that no longer serve us.


Core Energetics uses work with the body to facilitate an experiential understanding of emotional blocks, defensive postures, and self-destructive beliefs. By breathing and moving while exploring our life history, we more adroitly explore the emotional impact of our life experiences.


The world of therapy is increasingly becoming aware that the therapeutic relationship is essential to integrated progress. This means that the traditional “expert position” of the therapist is becoming less and less valid. Growth is something that happens between people - in this case, between therapist and client. Core Energetics holds this truth essential, and the therapist role is designed to support you as you recreate and re-energize your life.

-Susan Aposhyan-

“Communication specialists agree that 70% of communication occurs non-verbally. Therefore, the body is doing 70% of the work of therapy. The more that we become aware of our bodily processes, the more effective we are in both observing and communicating.”

History

Body psychotherapy reaches back to the 1920’s when Wilhelm Reich, a student and colleague of Sigmund Freud, noticed how the repression of feelings corresponded to the inhibition of the body. He developed the concept of ‘character armor’ - which describes how people develop fixed and rigid postures and patterns of relating in order to protect themselves against emotional pain.


Reich originated a range of complimentary approaches within psychoanalysis. And from this work, his students and clients went on to develop and diversity these concepts. Now, there are a variety of modern schools of body psychotherapy, such as bioenergetics (Alexander Lowen), Radix (Charles Kelly), Core Energetics (John Pierrakos), Integrative Body Psychotherapy (Jack Rosenberg), Emotional Anatomy (Stanley Keleman), Biodynamic Psychology (Gerda Boyesen), Hakomi (Ron Kurtz), and Biosynthesis (David Boadella).