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Exploring Answers Within
posted: Aug. 11, 2020.
Dr. Pat Ogden has been instrumental in what I have learned about trauma in the body. I first learned about her work at a conference, but I feel moved to carve out time to keep learning. One of the most inspiring words that she shared is that people have the capacity to find the answers within. The tendency of some therapists is to feel pressured to come up with all the answers before they recognize that the body has its own wisdom as Ogden has said. The ideal in therapy, is to ask the questions that are connected to mindfulness and require the individual to look inside themselves and explore questions such as "what do you notice in your body?" In my own experience in working with individuals, I enter the room with the belief that my clients have the answers within. Focusing a client to gain awareness of their bodies can yield valuable information from the client. In one my grief support groups several years ago, one of my clients spoke about her heart, and how the grief she experienced in her chest was unlike any other feeling. Tracking the sensations in the body with dysregulated individuals can be one of the most effective ways to work with trauma. In tracking, or following the sensations, the individual may notice it will change. One of the most moving parts of the podcast pertains to looking at early clinical errors. Ogden noted she did not fully understand dissociation early on in her training. One of her clients needed relational support, but Ogden did not realize there were other parts of her client that recognized empathy as dangerous. Hence, these other aspects of her client became aggressive with Ogden as the therapist. In the podcast, Ogden explained that part of this had to do with the fact that her graduate training program was not trauma informed. Ogden pointed out that this is now changing, as many more therapists are now getting further training in trauma treatment at conferences.