I just got back from presenting at the CCPA 2011 national conference! I have to tell you, it was a magnificent experience that left me so renewed and enthused!
I presented on a topic that I am passionate about. As Holistic Psychotherapist I am always mindful that we are more than our brain and our emotions. We are bodies and souls as well.
My presentation was called “Somatic Focusing, Chakra Meditation, Visualization: Tools for Trauma Unwinding.” So interesting for me to present this material to my peers. I am used to presenting to the general public or to different professionals like nutritionists. But when it is your own peer group it can feel a tad intimidating! Especially since my main message was that when working with trauma, the talking head just does not do it. That is, when we experience trauma our talking centre shuts down. So when addressing trauma there is evidence that supports the notion that the best way to tackle trauma is through a very slow process of visuals, body talk, sensing into the body and closed eyes work. This way the reptilian brain, where we registered the trauma memory and our most primitive brain area is communicated with more effectively.
I also demonstrated a technique called Somatic Focusing that originated from Eugene Gendlin’s work and Peter Levine’s work on trauma. Both speak of trauma unwinding and refer to the trauma being held and frozen in the nervous system as opposed to in the story or the event.
All in all the experience of being at the conference has been a professional highlight for me. The networking and trading of ideas has been so invigorating and inspiring. The different seminars were of such a high caliber that it made me realize how special it is to be accepted to present at one these conferences.
Being therapists, usually means we are alone with our clients all day and we cannot talk to anyone about our different specific success and dilemmas so that we do not violate privacy or ethics. Being at a conference of peers that understand this and live this, is something that I will always want and need more of.
So self care for the counsellor includes attending events that are networking and sharing based so that loneliness and isolation can be lessened.
*The views expressed by our authors are personal opinions and do not necessarily reflect the views of the CCPA