It’s part of our language to recognise the body/mind connection, as in: “He’s a pain in the neck.” “It’s a headache”.
What counselling can do is help you tune in to the message that your body is giving you. It allows quiet and reflective space to acknowledge what may be the real source of your pain. Stress, anxiety, depression and grief don’t just happen in our heads, they’re right in there at a cellular level, in the gut, in our breathing, in our stiff backs and necks. When we start to listen to what our bodies are saying, we can work with it. I often say to clients: “If you treated your car like this, what would happen?” And their rueful response is often “It’d be broken down at the side of the road.”
The most body-focussed counselling is psychodynamic. It works on the principle that our history is stored in our feelings. So, instead of dismissing “random” thoughts and feelings as illogical, you’ll be encouraged to be respectful of the source of those feelings. Very often we run on old software without realising it. Counselling allows us to “map” old patterns of behaviour. And knowing the map means we can recognise when what we feel is in the now or belongs to us, say, when we’re growing up. That insight is empowering, gives us choices in how we run our lives.
Brighton Chiropractors and Counsellor working together
Your chiropractor, of course, is there to treat your body. He/she will, as part of that, be asking how you are “using” your body. Are you hunched over a computer for much of the day? Do you have to drive a lot? What are the stressors (physical and emotional) in your life? How do you handle them? In short, listen to your body – it may be trying to tell you something.
Diane Hedge mbacp
Counsellor & Psychotherapist