Bowen Me - Structural and Soft Tissue Therapist
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Emotional release in bodywork

Emotional releaseIt’s not an uncommon thing for bodywork (of any kind) to bring about emotional release. This can happen when there has been physical trauma, especially where there is scar tissue present, but can also happen for the mental and emotional traumas that we pick up through life. I’ve had in in patients have these reactions when coming for lymphatic drainage, but most of all Bowen Therapy.

Going back to Plato, people in the healing professions have realised that you cannot separate the physical, mental and emotional. An example is that if you are stressed, the body has very definite physical reactions involving your adrenal glands and the various body systems linked to these. The cause of the stress does not need to be physical (being chased by a lion…) but can have an adverse physical impact. Many physical ailments can have mental and emotional components – auto-immune diseases (psoriasis, fibromyalgia, Grave’s or Hashimoto’s diseases etc), cancer, IBS and more can all be brought on or exacerbated by what’s in our minds. I’ve seen a very definite link with fluid retention and ongoing stress levels.

And so releasing physical tensions can bring up these mental and emotional triggers, especially if there is a combination of physical and emotional trauma. I’ve seen patients with many reactions, from a racing heart or anxiety attack-like symptoms to nausea, crying to laughing. Sometimes people can immediately put their finger on what the link is, but some need to talk to bring it out or go home and mull it over or talk to older family members who may be able to shed some light on what happened years ago.

I don’t pretend to fully grasp the mystery of these interactions in the body, but the longer I go on the more I’m convinced that we can’t continue to treat the body with the mind and the mind without the body. I’m not a trained counsellor or psychologist, so if ever I refer you on to someone, please don’t be offended. We have a lot of stigma around mental health in Australia that is needless. Sometimes a trained professional can help you get to the bottom of things where I can’t. I even have a hypnotherapist colleague who maybe able to help.

Treat any release as part of your repair process and don’t be afraid of what was in the past. That’s exactly where it remains and it can’t hurt you now, but if you are carrying it around it around it may be having an adverse impact on your health.

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