Body-oriented therapy is based on the concept that the body and mind are one, and should not be treated independently of one another. Body-oriented therapy is a collective term for many different therapeutic techniques in which the body is the central focus. These techniques can be very helpful for: fear and/or anxiety complaints, hyperventilation, negative body image, sexuality, being uncomfortable with your body or the body of others and fear of intimacy. If you have interest in body-oriented therapy, make sure that you choose a therapist who is a professional in this field and is registered as such (for example with the LWP of the Dutch Institute for Psychology (NIP)
Who chooses body-oriented therapy? Those who:
- notice that talking by itself does not solve their problems
- have a strong tendency to approach everything mentally
- wish to have more contact with their feelings
- have difficulty expressing their problems in words
- express their psychological problems physically, through unclear complaints and pains
What can you work on with body-oriented therapy?
- learning physical ways to relax yourself
- body awareness
- learning how to ground and center yourself
- relaxing your breathing
- learning to use your body to come into contact with your feelings
- being able to consciously feel the pent-up tensions and emotions within your body
- learning to express your emotions
- learning to understand your body, your posture, and the expressions and messages of your body.
What kind of people can the body-oriented approach help?
- People who have gained insight with traditional talking based therapy, but have not been completely relieved of their complaints.
- People who are unable to completely feel and/or express their own emotions or needs (for example with depression, burn out, fatigue, and eating disorders)
- People that are suffering from early disturbances in forming attachments or bonds
- People that have had traumatic experiences and have developed complaints due to these events (for example: on account of an accident, war situation, sexual abuse or mistreatment, PTSS, or bereavement)
- People who have complaints that are primarily expressed physically, such as hyperventilation, pre-menstrual complaints, or RSI.
- People who struggle with sensing, setting, or accepting boundaries or people with so-called autonomy problems.
Principles of Body-Oriented Therapy
- Body and mind form an indivisible unit.
- Just like the mind, the body has an archive function: it stores experiences via a “body memory” and can be approached through body awareness and perception.
- Muscle tension, posture, and movement patterns are related to how someone feels and how one deals with situations. They frequently have a psychological meaning.
- Awareness of bodily sensations and their emotional significance contribute to strengthening the ego, the sense of identity, and autonomy.
You can always obtain more information about active body-oriented therapists in your area. Ask for the section: “Lichaamsgericht Werkende Psychologen.” NIP : 020-4106222 / firstname.lastname@example.org