Emotionally Expressive Techniques: The Most Misunderstood Aspect of Core Energetics
"Emotionally Expressive Techniques: The Most Misunderstood Aspect of Core Energetics"
by Lisa Loustaunau
Emotionally expressive techniques are a powerful method that Core Energetics practitioners employ to help clients challenge their somatic and psychological blocks to feelings and consciousness. These energetic techniques however are frequently misunderstood.
The powerful motion and expression of repressed and suppressed feelings help us to break through and move beyond our mask, our idealized image of ourselves, and into a more direct energetic experience and awareness of feelings that we typically manage, rise above, compartmentalize, deny, or substitute with secondary feelings.
Core Energetics body-centered practitioners employ many techniques, including grounding, breathwork, and various soft techniques, but the expressive work has too frequently been mislabeled as mere catharsis. Powerful expression of emotion in Core Energetics is much more than catharsis. Needless to say, these techniques are clearly not a prescription or model for how anyone should behave, on the contrary, when used in the container of the therapy session, they are a method of breaking through the blocks that protect the heart. Proper use of these techniques by the skilled therapist and with the appropriate client will open a noticeable flow of energy in the body and support a deeper connection to the Heart energy as our “mask” of goodness is replaced by our deep knowing of our wholeness.
To grow and become all of who we are meant to be, each of us must take conscious responsibility for the energy of feelings which, because they are partially disowned, are leaking into our life and relationships in unconscious behaviors and negativities and are creating separation and suffering. When this energy leaks into our life without our conscious ownership we are powerless to make real changes. Also, the type of movement used in an expressive intervention is chosen by the practitioner depending upon the particularities of the client’s body; where the blocks are located, which areas of the body are overcharged or undercharged, while also supporting the energy to flow and ground. The client is empowered to contain and embody increased energy and consciousness.
It takes courage to see, to know, and to feel the truth. It takes courage to take responsibility for what we create and for the parts of ourselves we would prefer “not to know.” Many of us have had painful experiences with the irresponsible or disowned expressions of anger of others. This often leads to fear, denial, or misuse of our own aggressive feelings. However in disowning our own aggression, we simultaneously inhibit our healthy assertion. It is this healthy assertion that these techniques support to build in an individual. As we begin to work with feelings that were previously perceived as “dangerous” within the safe container of a supportive therapeutic relationship, something rather wonderful happens. Not only do we take greater self-responsibility, but we also reclaim the energy that has been trapped in the previously denied feelings. This life-force, this energy, is now freed and available for our creativity, our well-being, and a powerfully enhanced experience of our alive-ness.