What is SomatoEmotional Release®

Have you ever had an injury cause pain and discomfort long after it had healed? That’s not as unusual as you might think. Even when light-touch CranioSacral Therapy relieves tensions in your body tissues after an accident or injury, it’s sometimes necessary to release the trapped emotional energy to fully discharge the trauma and restore your body to good health. In those cases, you may spontaneously experience a SomatoEmotional Release® in your CranioSacral Therapy session.

SomatoEmotional Release (SER) is based on university research conducted in the 1970s by osteopathic physician John E. Upledger and biophysicist Zvi Karni. Their clinical studies led to the discovery that the body frequently retains the emotional imprint of physical trauma, especially of intense feelings. These emotional imprints often get deposited in the body, creating areas called “energy cysts.” Your body can adapt to energy cysts – those walled-off areas of emotion. But as you take on more stress from the daily bumps and bruises of life, your body can reach a tipping point and lose its ability to accommodate for the energy cysts. That’s when uncomfortable symptoms and dysfunctions can become difficult to suppress or ignore.

When your body is ready to release an energy cyst, you may undergo a SomatoEmotional Release. Rest assured, your CranioSacral Therapist will create a safe environment for you to get in touch with these long-held emotions – even silently. Sometimes that’s all it takes to allow them to move out of your body.

Other times your therapist may ask your permission to gently dialogue with you in a way that helps you release the emotional energy from your tissues. You may even be supported with simple guided-visualization exercises that allow you to let go of those emotions without the need to analyze or understand them. In a CranioSacral Therapy session, it’s also not unusual for your body to spontaneously return to the same position it was in when you first sustained your injury.

This is completely natural and allows the trapped emotional energy to escape along the same pathway it took when it entered your body. When this happens, your tissues may soften and relax as the energy cyst is expelled. Then your body is free to return to its greatest levels of health and performance.

While each person’s response to an SER is different, common experiences include:

  • Spontaneous memories of the trauma that led to the trapped emotions.
  • The unexpected welling up of emotions such as fear, sadness, anger, frustration and guilt.
  • A sense of relief, lightness, exhilaration and joy once the emotions are released.

Whatever the response, SomatoEmotional Release is a completely natural process that occurs when your body is ready to release the final residue of painful, trapped emotions. It’s never forced, and your therapist is right there to support you every step of the way.

So if you find yourself in a CranioSacral Therapy session and unexpected emotions well up, relax. With an Upledger Institute trained therapist, you’re in good hands.

If you want to read other article about SER



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