FIND A PRACTICE
Riley K. Smith.MA, LMFT
Find an exercise, ritual or meditation that takes you to a place of peace and safety – a place within – where you KNOW that you are okay. That place is a knowing that you are, at your core, exactly who you are supposed to be – nothing to be improved or perfected. Look for the experience of certainty that you are – you simply are – and that that is exactly and completely enough. There is nothing to do. Only BE.*
THE BASIC WOUND. The Basic Wound is the bad feeling, the somatic reaction, psychological upset, confusion and negative belief about the self that results from needs not met in infancy. It is the primal wound that is the foundation and reason for the psychological, behavioral and somatic patterns that interrupt aliveness and wellbeing. The Basic Wound is a lie about the Self that is held deep in the body and the psyche. It is also the root of upsets in the present. It is the source of that shaming voice within, however subtle, that repeats: “I’m not good enough, I’m not lovable, I’m damaged, or I’m not okay.” It is the root of suffering and conflict.
Everyone has a Basic Wound –some large, some small. It is the task of being human to transcend our Basic Wound and simply Be – in peace, alive and present. From that place our Doing is a natural function of volition. There is no need to compensate, defend, dominate, protect or pretend.
SO, FIND A PRACTICE.
As a psychotherapist, I base my work on guiding my clients from the pain of the Basic Wound to the peace and power of simply Being.** One of the tools, actually the most important tool, I use and teach to accomplish this is called the Sustaining Constancy Series.
SUSTAINING CONSTANCY SERIES (SCS). SCS is a sophisticated breathing exercise that creates a profound experience of wellbeing. It combines high-charge breathing with physical stresses that result in the release of muscular and organic holding in the body. SCS stimulates and balances the central nervous system, oxygenates the blood, releases endorphins in the brain and allows energy to flow freely throughout the body. Helping the client move through the interruptions that arise during the exercise is the somatic- psychotherapeutic work of IBP**.
SCS is a powerful antidote to the pervasive negative influence of the Basic Fault and when done as a daily practice, creates a constant sense of wellbeing and inner peace.
It is the core of my personal practice and is a practice that I teach my clients and students.
*That Being doesn’t mean not doing. It means that your doing is driven by volition, not the fear that you are insufficient.
**The basic premise of Integrative Body Psychotherapy. IBP was developed by Jack Lee Rosenberg, Ph.D., Beverly Kitean-Morse, Psy.D., Marjorie Rand, Ph.D, and others. For more information about IBP and the training, see www.ibponline.org Also there is a summary of IBP at www.wikipedia.org
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: LMFT in private practice since 1976. Faculty member at the Integrative Body Psychotherapy Central Institute in Venice since 2004. Trained therapists for eight years as Clinical Director at an out-patient drug program. AAMFT certified supervisor till 2008. Co-author of How to Be Happy Partners, a cooperative problem-solving manual for couples. Member of CAMFT, AAMFT and U.S. Assoc. of Body Psychotherapists.