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Men's Work Through the Bonny of Guided Imagery and Music

12/1/2012
Men’s work through The Bonny Method of Guided Imagery and Music

I have been reflecting a bit this past week on my own experiences as a client in The Bonny Method of Guided Imagery and Music (also know as GIM or The Bonny Method) and as a music therapist who has experience and credentials to provide GIM sessions (). My love and trust in music has brought me grounding, a connection, and a way to express my emotions and feelings. Yet, at times as a younger man, I was certainly not as aware that emotions were present or even involved in my relationships and daily life.

The Bonny Method of Guided Imagery and Music (), is a specialized music therapy method that utilizes deep focused music listening to aid a person in their health. A personal GIM session includes a conversation between the person wanting help (sometimes known as a client in “therapy speak”) and the GIM therapist. During this conversation they discuss the client’s needs, questions, problems, goals, and dreams. After the initial discussion the GIM therapist will assist the client to rest comfortably on a mat, table, couch, or comfortable chair. While seated or lying down the client is assisted by the GIM therapist to focus the client’s mind (through relaxation techniques and visual imagery). The GIM therapist chooses music for the client to listen to and experience. The client listens to the music chosen in the focused state of mind and reports her/his on-going experience to the GIM therapist. These experiences can be physical or body sensations, emotions, mental images, memories, or other types of experiences. During the music listening the GIM therapist verbally assists the client to focus on her/his on-going experiences. As the music ends the GIM therapist assists the client to return to a normal sense of awareness for a culminating conversation. During the culminating conversation the client and the GIM therapist discuss the client’s music listening experiences and how the experiences could benefit the client’s life. Some people find benefits from as few as six to ten GIM therapy sessions while other people find great help in more sessions.

As a man, I know that male emotional expression is sometimes feared, limited, denied, and/or totally frowned upon. However, I must say that through my own personal work in GIM I have discovered ways that I can really understand and live my emotions. I can’t say that it has been totally easy, but then again many things in life are simply hard work. Something, I imagine many men would agree with is that hard work brings many emotions and feelings to life on a daily basis. From the driving push forward of competition and a need to excel to disappointment and even sadness over a missed opportunity or big project that just didn’t happen in the way it was planned. I can now say that GIM has helped me to really understand my emotional responses and feelings, become more comfortable with expressing emotions, and create ways that I could be with my feelings in my regular day-to-day life.

I would like to also say, as one of the music therapist of Music Journey, LLC (), I have been privileged to be with and assist men in their individual growth and awareness of their emotions. I have seen and heard men describe deeper connections with their families, new commitments to career and entrepreneurship, and more comfort with the feelings and emotions they experience daily. My hope is to be able to help the men that come to me for help to accomplish their goals regarding emotions, relationships, careers, or other areas of life.

I thank you for taking time to read this post and I hope that you find some benefit in the information that I have tried to communicate. If you have any further questions about men and GIM or the services that, Music Journey, LLC () provides please feel free to contact me.

Aaron K. Teague