There are so many skills taught on the biodynamic craniosacral course that are also key life skills. For example, we are taught how to come into relationship with a client which is as relevant in the outside world as it is in the therapy room - in meetings, family events, random stranger meetings, you name it!
But what does 'coming into relationship' mean? For me, this means building a bridge between my world and the client's world; it means finding a playing field where we are both safe and held. In essence, it's about making a connection, with Heart, that allows trust to flourish.
The three questions I need to answer to enable me to come into relationship in a way of gentleness are:
i) How much physical space does this person need from me?
Space and containment are fundamental building blocks of craniosacral therapy. Some people need lots of physical space to enable them to "arrive" (energetically turn up) so being keyed into a client's state of being from the initial meeting is important before even starting a session. This would then dictate things like how far should the chairs be apart to take the case history?
ii) Which side are they more comfortable with me being in orientation to them?
Often, we will have a side that feels more vulnerable, which might be related to the lie-side when in utero or a traumatic event. We may not even be conscious of this ourselves but if you take a moment to review past encounters with people, you may see a pattern of the "hairs going up on the back of your neck" when someone is on your left for instance. Or a feeling of unease in the pit of your stomach. Many people do not like others standing behind them. As cranial work aims to support the nervous system, putting someone in flight or fight syndrome by your orientation to them is very counter-productive!! So I always take time to sense what position the client will be most comfortable with me to enter their space and start the hands-on treatment.
iii) What is the best way for this person to help their story unfold?
I like taking a free-flowing case history because this often enables the client to unfold their own story, in the order that is necessary for them. I often find that someone comes with a symptom (e.g. backache) but given the space to be listened to, will recount the life events that superceded the symptom, which is exactly what cranial work enables. Witnessing the unfolding of a life story, of a case history, is an honour each and every time. I am constantly moved at the resilience and heart shown by people, in the face of grief, trauma and heart ache.
There is so much richness in relationship, no matter what the type.
On this ground we meet
We reach out
On this ground we unite
Craniosacral sessions are available with Ri in Bristol, Cirencester and Cherington.