Individual Counseling Works Best with Practice
Individual counseling is a useful tool for anyone who has been through a traumatic event, has PTSD, or just needs an outlet for everyday life. The caveat is that individual counseling works during a session, as well as practicing at home. We can help people recognize triggers for trauma and ways to move through them. Often just recognizing that you are triggered allows you to focus on addressing it differently. Take Charge Inc. offers individual counseling with licensed and trained professional, Terri Clinton Dichiser.
Practicing outside of therapy can be very helpful in supporting and reinforcing the work done in therapy. Therapy provides a safe space to explore and work through underlying issues and patterns, it is the day-to-day practice outside of therapy that can truly facilitate healing and growth. In individual counseling, you can work with a therapist to develop coping strategies for managing stress, anxiety, depression, and other mental health challenges. This can include developing healthy habits, setting boundaries, and learning to communicate more effectively. Utilizing somatic psychotherapy, you can create a bridge from therapy to life by utilizing practices to support therapy teachings.
Somatic psychotherapy is a term that’s been used more frequently over the past few years as scientific research has proven that, as humans, we store memories, experiences, and emotions on a cellular level. This means it’s not “all in your head”; rather, our bodies hold this data as well. This is why many people express a feeling of ‘body anxiety’ even in the non-existence of anxious thoughts. It’s also why you may find yourself not feeling very safe in your own skin on certain occasions, times of the year, or even in certain environments. Often, your body is reminded of something, even when your mind is not, and is sending an alert, a pause, or even a danger signal. Over the last several years, somatic therapy has been effective in helping individuals who struggle with all kinds of stressors and has been effective in helping them finally experience relief.
Somatic approaches are used in individual counseling to engage the relationship between mind, body, brain, and behavior. Somatically trained therapists use interventions to help calm their clients’ nervous system and create more ease in the healing process. Here are 10 ideas that are commonly used and will help connect to your outside world, so you can practice outside of the individual counseling sessions as well.
- Developing Somatic Awareness – In somatic therapy, clients are educated about what body awareness is, and how to cultivate body awareness in and aroundyour body. By identifying areas of tension and areas of constriction, as well as thoughts, feelings, and behaviors that promote a feeling of calm and safety and bring these to conscious awareness. By focusing on, and amplifying the sensations in your body, you begin to deepen your healing experience and allow for change that you can “feel” in your skin.
- Resourcing – Resourcing refers to the way we strengthen our sense of stability and safety in the world. Often looking at significant people, relationships, ego strengths, experiences, times, and places that strengthen a sense of safety and choice. We “download” these sensations, thoughts, and feelings associated with feel-good experiences so the mind + body can come back to these resource states later when trauma or anxiety work gets tiring. Resourcing provides as an anchor to replenish energies.
- Grounding in the Here-And-Now – Grounding refers to the ability to experience our full selves as connected and “embodied”. We use grounding tools to help calm and regulate our nervous systems when we are feeling overly activated or triggered, as grounding helps soothe and settle.
- Using Descriptive Language – The somatic-focused therapy approach is all about getting curious, getting descriptive, and staying close to the experience that’s happening in and around your body. Tension, anxiety, and trauma memories get processed if you can track, contact, describe, and allow the experience to move through you. You can get descriptive to meet your body experience, to help yourself move through it.
- Movement – Movement is a natural way for the body to move through difficult experiences, insecurities, past traumas, and intense emotions. Movement is a natural way to help strengthen your abilities to show up, be connected to others, and feel more confident.
- Co-Regulation & Self-Regulation – Co-regulation refers to the way we calm ourselves down when we are connecting to someone else. Self-Regulation is when we develop our own tools to calm ourselves down on our own. We all need a combination of both; the soothing we get from others as well as our own abilities to self-regulate when needed.
- Titration & Pendulation – When we approachhealing from a body-centered place, we do so with appropriate pacing and tracking so that the body can tolerate the discomfort, and properly release the emotions needing to be released. Titration is a process in which we experience small levels of distress at a time, with the focus being to release, and “discharge” the tension from the body. Pendulation is what is used to achieve titration, as pendulation is when you pendulate your focus between stressful content and something completely non-stress related. Oscillating through the two helps the body slowly tap into and then release, at a balanced pace.
- Boundary Setting – Boundaries are foundational pieces of work when it comes to healing. When you lean into boundaries from a somatic standpoint, you will notice what kind of boundaries you are naturally setting; verbally and nonverbally. Setting boundaries is one of the surest ways to feel protected and steady in your skin and in your day-to-day interactions.
So how do we practice healing? Utilizing individual counseling can help! With individual counseling, Terri provides a safe, comfortable environment that allows you to put your thoughts and feelings into words, without fear of criticism or judgment. She will guide you to a better understanding and possibly a different perspective on your life’s circumstances. For more information about individual counseling, contact Take Charge, Inc. at (913) 239-8255, or to schedule an appointment, check out our website.
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