Green Leaf
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Energy Dynamics
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Physical-Emotional-Mental alignment
The philosophy and theory behind ‘Touch Therapy’
Throughout my work as a Counselling Psychologist I became aware that what a client may be telling me was not the same as what their body was telling me.  Quite unintentionally, we often sabotage our desire to change patterns of behaviour or heal old emotional wounds.   This is due to the fact that, for the most part, we usually ‘live in our heads’.  By this I mean that we spend most of our waking life communicating with our conscious mind and from this communication we make assumptions about what needs to change.

In fact the information gathered from the conscious mind is only the ‘shop window’, the tip of the iceberg in terms of what lies behind that which we wish to change.  For the most part we are totally unaware of the myriad of messages stored in our subconscious mind and body.

So… how does all of this result in ‘touch therapy’?  In short, at an organic and cellular level, the body stores the energy of all the things that have happened since conception. 
(See Babette Rothschild’s book on this subject:  ‘The Body Remembers:  The Psychophysiology of Trauma and Trauma Treatment;  W.W. Norton & Co, 2000.) 

It stands to reason that while we are making efforts to ‘discipline’ ourselves to make a fresh start we may, on the very same day, find ourselves sabotaging that effort.  The Body is a community, a team, but we rarely consult any other aspect of this community other than what is going on in our heads at a conscious level.  Any wonder that the team can’t pull together to help us achieve our goal.  Without attending to the ‘hidden’, subconscious information we certainly can expect to find resistance on our journey!

All thought, action and reaction creates energy; this energy may be positive or negative.  New-Agers tell us that we must all be positive and ignore negative energy.  This is a wonderful ‘shangri-la’ of an idea.  The truth is, however, that we all have some negative energy stored away in our cellular and subconscious being.  In order to experience peace and positive energy through all the layers of our mind and body, it is of vital importance that we acknowledge the function of this negative energy.  If we ignore a wounded and crying child, s/he will only cry louder because s/he needs attention.  Should we ignore the cry for help the wound may become infected and the child will store away an experience of neglect.  It is the same with the negative energy running deep within our psyche.  It is this same energy that will stand in defiance of any attempts to change our lives because energy can’t be eradicated.  Energy can be changed but until we have taken the time to understand the reason why that negative energy exists and deal with it, it will always sit as a roadblock to new endeavours.

At this point, I would state that of course it is possible in a very military-like manner to force change.  In order to maintain this change, a person has to maintain the military discipline and vice-like grip on him/herself for life.  This ‘forcing' behaviour actually ignores the whole physical organism and creates stress in all parts of the psyche.  This sort of force or discipline can result in debilitating problems for the body (please see case history below).
What is ‘Touch Therapy’ and how does it work?
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Firstly, ‘Touch Therapy’ is NOT some fancy, new age healing gimmick.  It is a therapy that I personally developed through my work with clients over the past 10 years.  It is a Therapy based on the dynamics and physics of energy.  How often do we say “ooh I didn’t like that person’s vibes”?  We all experience other people’s energy in varying degrees.

Working with people for 10 years it is hard not to see the argument between what the head is saying and what the body is telling me.  Very often a throw away comment such as “this niggling pain really annoys me and my Doctor says there’s nothing wrong” is an enormous clue as to what is really going on.

When a client agrees to me trialling ‘touch therapy’ with them, it is with the utmost respect that I approach this work.  Generally, I will have spent a little time with the client before even suggesting this work and sometimes it may just not be right for some people.

Lying on a massage table for a massage is one thing but being in the same position for something we don’t necessarily understand may feel quite unnerving.  It is for this reason that ‘touch therapy’ must be used with care and respect.

In the first instance, reading the body’s energy is NOT a psychic or ‘spooky’ event.  Any experienced psychologist/psychotherapist will tell you that they can read in a client more than what is being told to them.  Many therapists become attuned to ‘reading’ people’s energies.  This happened to me and I was frustrated because I knew that these energies had to be released at a subconscious and physical level.  Hypnosis goes a long way to achieving this shift in unhelpful energy patterns but sometimes it really does need a ‘hands on’ approach.
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When I have permission to work with a client’s subconscious energy at a physical level I first ascertain where the blocked energy is focused.  This is based on what I have already learned from my client as well as a keen sense of observation and intuition.

The movements I make on the body are gentle and non-invasive.  The therapy itself is extremely powerful and may sometimes produce physical reactions as energy starts to flow.  If you think of a blocked pipe… when a force is sent through it to remove the blockage, the waste has to come out.  It is the same with Energetic Touch Therapy.  Although I have seen a variety of reactions to this therapy they tend, in the main, to centre around light-headedness, nausea, diarrhoea or an overwhelming need to sleep for an extended period of time.  All of these reactions are synonymous with any form of physical therapy designed to release stress and tension.  They are also synonymous with the elimination of toxins from the body.

Should any of what I’ve explained in this section concern you, please rest assured that it is NOT obligatory, as part of your Healing Week, to experience Energetic Touch Therapy; indeed, it is not suited to all people.  Should you decide to sign up for a Healing Week and want to know more about Energetic Touch Therapy, please do not hesitate to ask me.

Case History

When Melanie (name changed) came to see me it was because she was experiencing a problem at work with time-management, lethargy about life in general but of greater concern was the non-stop pain in all her joints.  Melanie had been to her Doctor who had ruled out Rheumatoid Arthritis and couldn’t find anything in the tests to explain the pain.  She told me that she didn’t understand this problem as she had never had a day off sick, that she was usually extremely efficient and had always loved her work.  Melanie was extremely proud of her academic and work record as she had graduated top of her year, got a High Distinction in her Master’s Degree and had been promoted through her firm more quickly than anyone in the firm’s history.

As we talked Melanie told me, also with great pride, that she had given up smoking a year ago and hadn’t had a cigarette since - she used to smoke 40 cigarettes a day.

Melanie was rather confused when I started asking her about her smoking habits and how she had managed to give up… how had she done it and what was the main reason for giving up?

It transpired that Melanie had devised a time schedule in which to stop smoking.  For 3 months before the day she had picked as the beginning of her non-smoking life, Melanie told herself over and over again how disgusting she was and how unprofessional she looked when she smoked and
how she would appear more authoritative if she wasn’t running out for a smoke all day long.

Through a combination of counselling and hypnosis it became apparent that Melanie had started smoking because she wanted to be ‘part of the gang’ at school.  This was quite a normal reason to start smoking but in Melanie’s case her need to belong was greater than just being part of her peer group.  Melanie had been adopted at the age of 5; she remembered being taken to her new home by the woman from the children’s home with whom she had developed a very strong bond.  She remembered hating everything about the new home and remembered being terrified because her new parents looked so old.  In spite of being loved unconditionally and well looked after, Melanie said that she still thought about the lady at the children’s home and missed her still.

It was through asking about Melanie’s decision to give up smoking that the whole story of her adoption came out.  Melanie’s needs to belong and to succeed so no-one could ever have control of her life and make her do something she didn’t want to do became paramount in her young life.  She realised that in order to succeed she needed to be popular but powerful.  Melanie quickly became a top student but discovered that she had few friends.  In order to resolve this she joined a couple of social groups and found that by smoking with the others she was allowed entry into an elite peer group.

Melanie had been confused about her lethargy because she had expected to have much more energy when she gave up smoking.  In general, increased energy is one of the long-term effects of giving up smoking.  In Melanie’s case, however, it transpired that she had been determined to throw away the very thing that had been the symbol of her primary goal - to belong, and her secondary goals - to be powerful and successful.   Ironically, Melanie’s decision to stop smoking reflected in some way her early goals.  What she had been unable to foresee was that by forcing herself to stop smoking, at a subconscious level she negated her still valid and powerful core beliefs about wanting to belong.  Appearing more authoritative did not equate with belonging, in fact it had the opposite effect in that while indeed she did develop a greater air of authority (through the confidence she felt she had gained through quitting smoking) Melanie also became more and more isolated.

It was apparent that Melanie’s pain was a ‘voice’ for the part of her life that she had symbolically thrown away.  Through the application of Energetic Touch Therapy it was possible to access the ‘voice’ of neglect and to change Melanie’s ‘life-script’ around smoking and what it had meant to her.  Through ‘touch therapy’ Melanie was able to release a lot of her old pain and sadness.

It was important for Melanie to ‘hear’ herself.  It was important that she, at a conscious level understood the depth of sadness that was being experienced in all aspects of her psyche.  Through understanding the symbolism that smoking had become for Melanie, she was then able to ‘communicate’ with that part of herself and work with her whole conscious and subconscious mind and body as a team.  Her last words as she left were “I didn’t see it but all I needed to do was to become part of my own community”.

I received a phone call from Melanie two weeks later; she reported that all her pains had gone.  Indeed, she had bought a packet of cigarettes and then re-told the story of her therapy to that packet and to herself before burning the whole packet. 
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Case History
What is Touch Therapy & How does it work?

Energetic Touch Therapy is a physical approach to psychological problems.
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