“Trauma is an internal straight jacket created when a devastating moment is frozen in time. It stifles the unfolding of being, and strangles our attempts to move forwards with our lives. It disconnects us from ourselves, others, nature and spirit. When overwhelmed by threat, we are frozen in fear, as though our instinctive survival energies were ‘all dressed up with no place to go.” – Peter Levine, Ph.D.
What is Somatic Experiencing® Therapy?
Somatic experiencing is a therapy that was developed by Peter Levine. He integrated principles derived from the understanding of our complex nervous systems, mindfulness, movement and bioenergetics to develop a therapy that can offer a body-based resolution to trauma. This therapy offers a road map to understand how one gets caught in fight, flight, freeze or a collapse reaction and offers clinical tools to resolve these physiological states.
Somatic Experiencing Therapy supports healing trauma. Trauma is an extreme form of fear accompanied by a state of perceived helplessness—and often hopelessness. Symptoms of trauma and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) can include emotional numbness–removed from reality, rage, chronically intrusive memories of trauma that seem to be happening in the present moment, inability to distinguish flashbacks from real occurrences, and being incapable of acting, immobilized with fear or anxiety. The good news though, is that all humans are born pre-wired with a process for recovering from traumatic symptoms.
During Somatic Experiencing® Therapy the client develops increased body awareness, sensation tolerance, and are carefully guided to safely release the stuck energy of traumatizing experiences. Through this therapeutic process clients experience being more embodied, developing more self-regulation, are more easily able to resource and find support, develop a flexible nervous system, and stop experiences of overwhelm. Over time clients experience a heightened sense of empowerment and increased capacity to be present and connect easily with others.
Somatic Experiencing therapy works with the body through awareness/mindfulness practices and gentle healing touch. Through the support of the practitioner and clinical skills taught, you are able to access the root of the traumatic experiences and ultimately heal more deeply than traditional talk therapy. Dr. Dionne Madrigal is able to offer Somatic Experiencing therapy both in office in conjunction with mindfulness-therapy and/or in conjunction with mindfulness and creative arts therapy.
Dr. Dionne Madrigal is a certified Somatic Experiencing Practitioner