Think of the last time you had a toothache. The throbbing in your jaw motivates you to do something, doesn’t it? Maybe you rub medicine on your gum to numb the pain and the pain subsides.
So are you cured? If the pain comes back…no. It’s time to see the dentist.
Experiencing pain is a normal part of life. Sometimes, however, physical pain is the mind’s way of signaling “Houston, we have a problem” when we haven’t been paying attention to our emotional needs.
Physical pain is a really effective way of getting attention! Just think of that painful tooth.
Unfortunately, it’s less straightforward to treat bodily pain that comes from emotional pain. Because treating the symptoms doesn’t get rid of the cause of the pain.
Enter Somatic IFS. The word somatic refers to the body with an emphasis on it being separate from the mind. Susan, however, sees the body and mind as being nearly inseparable. They mutually influence each other’s health and wellbeing, and experience of life. Somatic IFS strengthens our understanding of this connection, allowing us to heal our physical and emotional pain from the inside out.
I just returned from a week long Somatic IFS retreat in Costa Rica, which was the perfect setting to discuss how mind and body come together. I spoke with Susan McConnell about pain, and how somatic IFS helps us create a space where healing happens.
Susan is no stranger to pain. While she was passionate about her work with survivors of domestic violence, before long, she experienced the physical symptoms of burnout – symptoms that eventually led her to the practice of Somatic IFS.
Listen as Susan walks me through five practices of Somatic IFS that can be used to address pain. Join us in these steps, and prepare to be surprised by the native, inherent intelligence of your body.