Part 4: How to Practice Somatic Awareness In Community
A piece of my journey that was truly one of the most transformative, and was huge as far as somatic work, and learning to notice my mind/body/spirit connection, was the 2 years of practicing during graduate school, in Transformative Practice Groups. These practices became part of me- they changed the way I was aware of my mind/body/spirit, they changed the way I showed up in the world. These practices are how I begin the Be Rooted program, before we even learn any Reiki- to learn to be in, and to practice being in our body- the somatic work- these practices, along with grounding, are the root of the Be Rooted program, then we move into the practice of Reiki!
Part of my graduate school program at the Tai Sophia Institute (now Maryland University of Integrative Health) was Transformative Practice Groups (TPG). We worked in small groups of around 6 students with 2 teachers, and we met once a month, to practice our weekly practices, for 2 years. We practiced daily for 2 straight years, journaling every day about our daily practice…. TRANSFORMATION IS NOT A ONE WALK DOG! In 2009, “somatic work” was not the buzz word that it is today- it is now the basis of so much healing of trauma, and I am grateful for my TPG and the daily practices that helped me to be in my body and aware of my mind/body connection. If you are a beginner at these concepts, check out The Body Keeps the Score by Bessel Van Der Kolk and My Grandmother’s Hands by Resmaa Menakem.
Because of this work, these practices, along with the energetic healing I’ve done over the past decade, with the support of community, I have been able to connect my emotions/energy to my physical pain or sensations like:
- Migraines were easily triggered by addiction energy.
- My lower back pain was often connected to when I was taking on my dad’s energy and back pain.
- That one knot in my upper back was my “I’m worried about my stepson” knot.
By noticing these connections, over the years I have been able to heal these patterns and stories, to let go of the trauma held in my body, including physical pain. I have also come to a place of neutrality in many situations, and when the pain does arise, I am able to notice and continue to release and let go. What I love and I am grateful for, is that I have been able to bring these practices to clients and students and have observed them have similar profound shifts, letting go of trauma, stories, and awareness for continued healing as they embody new ways of being in their bodies with energetic awareness.
For two years, these daily practices, and sharing them in community, with the guidance of my teachers, made all the difference in connecting to how my emotions, my stories from the past, and my surroundings were affecting my physical body. I share these powerful practices as part of Be Rooted, and the power of practicing in community, for accountability and practice of noticing the phenomenon in the body. I love to bring these practices and connections to energy healing work. I share 12 simple practices in the Be Rooted program and we continue to practice throughout the 9 months together, embodying the practices, along with the practice of Reiki.