I am a certified Somatic Experiencing Practitioner (SEP) with extensive training in the use of touch for neurophysiological and neuroaffective regulation.
Somatic Experiencing™ (SE) is a method for resolving shock trauma and relieving chronic stress. Founded by Dr. Peter Levine, SE is an approach that assists the biological completion of the fight, flight or freeze response which, in turn, can resolve shock trauma and release chronic somatic holding patterns.
Trauma is not caused by an event, but rather develops as a nervous system response to being overwhelmed and unable to fully process stimulation. Overwhelming traumatic reactions may result from a wide variety of stressors such as accidents, invasive medical procedures, sexual or physical assault, emotional abuse, neglect, war or natural disasters.
Animals in the wild are rarely traumatized by routine threats to their lives. Under threat, massive amounts of energy are mobilized in readiness for self-defense. Once safe, animals spontaneously “discharge” this excess energy through involuntary movements including shaking, trembling, and deep spontaneous breaths. This discharge process resets the autonomic nervous system, restoring equilibrium.
Humans can process high-intensity emotional states, but our adaptive survival styles often override the natural discharge of excess energy through an array of emotional defenses and unconscious fears of our bodily experience. This often results in disturbances in our sleep, digestion, respiration, and immune system functions. Unresolved physiological distress can lead to an array of physical, cognitive, emotional, and behavioral symptoms.