Alternative MethodsConventional Methods


July 3

Treating the person not only the condition

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I’d like to tell you a little about craniosacral therapy and my approach. Many people ask what it best used for treating. Sometimes they ask something like, is it for physical symptoms, emotional distress, nervous disorders or a spiritual crisis?

I always say, I treat the person rather than the condition or symptom. As such it can be used to treat anyone. The symptom is by no means ignored but it is not necessarily my focus during treatment. Indeed it would be better to say I don’t focus so much as watch and listen, not only with my eyes and ears, but also with my hands and heart.

I don’t seek to direct treatment. A skill of the craniosacral therapist is to remain still within and in not wanting a particular outcome. It is important to be present, curios and compassionate. This encourages a deep felt sense of security in the client. From this there arises a relationship whereby the body of the client starts to reveal it’s own innate intelligence and priority for change/healing. I can best demonstrate this with an example of a recent case.

A client came to me suffering from vertigo and nausea brought on by labyrinthitis. There were also severe and persistent headaches. I noticed tension in the facial complex and jaw. Naturally she was in a stressful situation, but she was also exhibiting a level of hypervigilance which hinted at possible past trauma. I won’t cover the detail here, but over a couple of sessions there were other more subtle residues of experience being held by the body, revealing themselves in the present and through our shared experience as client and therapist. This sharing is sometimes verbal but more often simple shared sensation. What followed was a subtle unwinding of tension held in the body. It’s still extraordinary to me that witnessing and allowing the body to express itself, is enough to bring about change. Her physical symptoms disappeared within days without me treating them, in the conventional sense. She has also found the courage to start making life changes that she hopes will bring her greater happiness.

She was a particularly responsive client and it doesn’t always happen that way. Sometimes it can take longer for someone to experience a deep enough felt sense of security and stillness to access there own healing. What makes this work so interesting is the unexpected everyday.

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