“The body’s role is to ensure metamorphosis.”
- Maurice Merleau-Ponty
Embodied Analysis is rooted in traditional psychoanalysis, and like Freudian analysis, emphasizes the role of the unconscious and the necessity of language--spoken to another-- for psychic transformation. Freud placed great emphasis on the body and how the body stores trauma and memories of which the mind is completely unaware; however, much of his work on the body has been lost in contemporary approaches to psychoanalysis and psychotherapy. Modern day approaches tend to emphasize the mind over the body (as though the two were separate), seeking to increase “insight” rather than engender true transformation. While insight can certainly be a side effect of therapy, it is not the transformative factor. Think of the many instances where you may say, “I know why I do X, but I still can’t stop doing it.” Approaches that stay at the level of intellectualization do little to resolve the roots of psychological distress, instead often increasing it as we feel anxiety/sadness/guilt/failure over the fact that we now “understand” our symptoms but remain stuck in them. This emphasis on “understanding” and “intellectualization”--at the expense of other ways of knowing--are themselves a sign of repression of the feminine.
Embodied Analysis reasserts the importance of the body in therapeutic work, focusing not only on the power of language to shift psychic symptoms, but on the need to take seriously how our bodies constitute our worlds. We experience the world, not only through thoughts and emotions, but simultaneously through our bodies. Indeed, our bodies offer a rich source of information that we have, for far too long, ignored. Far from being distinct, our bodies are profoundly intelligent and our thoughts profoundly embodied.
From an analytic perspective, psychological symptoms are not “chemical imbalances” or problems to be overcome, but rather messages that speak to the hidden, innermost parts of ourselves. Our symptoms point to unconscious desires and conflicts rooted deep within our bodies. Embodied Analysis is an in-depth exploration of what it means to be human, and more specifically, what it for means for you to be a human.
An embodied analysis entails weekly talk therapy that focuses on the unconscious while utilizing various forms of movement and nutritional therapies to precipitate deep-rooted, enduring transformation by addressing psyche and soma.
*Embodied Analysis is only available to clients in New York and California.