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Do you ever feel unsafe, lost, unheard, misunderstood?

“What do you want to be?” they asked.

“Safe. Heard. Understood. Accepted. Believed.”

On the first day of 2024 (at least I think it is, it could be February for all I know - is anyone else losing track of what day it is?!), I’ve finished an incredible training session on somatic experiencing (more on this to follow).

There was so much I've been reflecting on with my own personal journey from a little girl who abandoned her self in order to fit in and feel accepted, who went onto dive headfirst into unhealthy patterns of relationships where the lack of safety felt familiar to her.

I’m also reflecting how many clients of all genders tell me - or show me through their body language - how they feel: unheard, misunderstood, lost, stuck, disconnected.

Sometimes just talking about something isn’t enough in therapy; it can even make things worse, trying to find words to explain a traumatic event which is so inexplicable.

It’s often linked to attachment, where your needs weren’t always met as an infant and you learned that by crying or having a tantrum, you were met with rejection or abandonment, so learned not to make a noise, not to shout or yell. Inner child work can often help you identify what needs of yours weren't being met and what you could say or offer to that younger part of your self to validate their needs, with the perspective of your rational, compassionate adult self.

With somatic work, you can re-experience some of your ‘big emotions’ - anger and frustration being the ones which are most likely to cause ‘blocks’ in your adult life. By safely allowing you to feel the sensations of those emotions, you can start to find a way to shift the energy that’s been keeping you trapped in unhealthy patterns which may have left you feeling depressed and disconnected. I'll write a longer post on somatic experiencing (the brainchild of Peter Levine, author of Waking the Tiger: Healing Trauma) as it's something I feel can be profoundly empowering for anyone who finds it hard to remember or talk about their experiences of trauma (with a little or big 't'),

Perhaps you can reflect on whether you feel Safe. Heard. Understood. Accepted. Believed. Do they feel like pipe dreams, too far out of reach from how you are now?

Maybe you feel, like I have, that you’re just existing. Surviving. Putting on a smile and trying to get through each day, hoping you won’t shout or be shouted at today.

If any of this sounds familiar and you’d like to talk to someone who has gone through this and can help empower you with the tools and knowledge to start to make changes in your life, then please reach out.

You can send me a message via my contact page, and I’ll get back to you.

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