Sensorimotor psychotherapy, a body-centered approach that aims to treat trauma and attachment issues, integrates sensorimotor processing with cognitive and emotional processing. Here are some of the interventions, skills, activities, and tools often taught or used in this therapy:
1. Mindful Body Awareness:
Guided to consciously bring attention to bodily sensations and emotions, fostering a deeper understanding of their experiences.
2. Grounding Techniques:
These are taught to help anchor in the present moment, especially when overwhelmed by distressing memories or feelings.
Tapping into internal and external resources, such as personal strengths or supportive relationships, to aid in managing emotional responses.
4. Movement and Gesture Experiments:
Small movements or gestures to explore non-verbal expressions of experiences.
5. Trauma Reenactment Recognition:
Recognizing and understanding patterns of behavior and responses that are reenactments of past traumas.
6. Window of Tolerance Awareness:
Recognizing the “window of tolerance” – the range of emotional arousal within which one can function effectively. This awareness can help manage hyperarousal or hypoarousal states associated with trauma.
7. Breathing Techniques:
Proper breathing exercises to help regulate emotional responses and the physiological impact of stress or trauma.
“Tracking” or observing physical sensations, emotions, and thoughts, promoting a better understanding of responses and reactions.
9. Pendulation and Titration:
Techniques to manage and process traumatic memories. Pendulation involves the natural rhythm of moving between states of tension and relaxation. Titration refers to processing small bits of a traumatic memory at a time.
10. Physical Engagement:
Physical engagement strategies, such as throwing a ball back and forth, to regulate the arousal state and re-engage motor planning skills.
11. Body Mapping:
This involves drawing or imagining the client’s body and marking areas where physical sensations related to trauma are felt.
12. Dual Awareness:
A technique that encourages people to maintain awareness of the present moment while also recalling a distressing memory.
Remember, sensorimotor psychotherapy should be facilitated by a trained and licensed mental health professional due to its complex nature and the sensitive issues it often addresses.