If you’ve been following the updates from Iris Healing Retreat, then you’re probably aware that we take a different kind of approach to conquering addiction. Yes we make sure to incorporate all of the proper recovery methods, but we also have firm beliefs in holistic healing and out-of-the-box techniques that can help people overcome their struggles. One such method, which blends a bit from both worlds, is Somatic Therapy.
What is Somatic Therapy?
Rooted in traditional psychotherapy, this unique approach focuses on both the mind AND body; and it has delivered some impressive results.
First, a little breakdown on how this particular practice works. Think of it as a Yin Yang approach to wellness. On one side there are the emotions; the thoughts, attitudes and feelings that lead people to use and cause damage their body.
Then on the other side, there is the physical component. Here focus is put on things like diet and organ cleansing, which work to clear the mental state.
Proponents of Somatic Therapy (like ourselves) believe these two dualities are closely connected and one cannot be fully healed without the other.
How Does Somatic Therapy Work?
So the next question logically becomes: How does Somatic Therapy work?
To answer this, it may be best to look at a scenario we see far too frequently with addictions. Imagine that an emotional trauma has manifested itself into a dependency (which is often the case). The drug or alcohol abuse itself tends to bubble up with bodily symptoms; such as internal pains, bad skin, puffy eyes, sexual dysfunction or weight fluctuations.
Exploring feelings through therapeutic talking sessions is not going to necessarily relieve the person of their physical ailments. Rather blending emotional explorations with holistic aerobic techniques (such as yoga, deep breathing and meditation) can create a much fuller and complete healing experience.
In our eyes, Somatic Therapy offers wellness from the inside out. Developing a mind-body connection is so essential when coming to terms with an addiction. Issues like emotional trauma really do wreak internal havoc.
Anxiety, central nervous disorders, bad posture and what have you can make people physically ill and, tragically, shave off years from their lives. Then when you add toxins like drugs and alcohol into the equation, well just imagine the damage it can do to a healthy body.
How Somatic Therapy was Developed
It is also important to note that Somatic Therapy has received widespread acceptance within the psychological community.
For one thing, its development was cultivated by none other than Wilhelm Reich (who happened to be a student of Sigmund Freud). His landmark 1933 study, Character Analysis, clearly pointed out the physical body’s importance when exploring the mind.
Reich’s recommendations echo exactly what we do today; blending exercise, stretching and deep breathing into a regular therapeutic practice.
We believe in complete, multilayered wellness achieved through the yin and the yang.