Discover more from Studio A
Settling in, an open house, plus emotions & muscles
Build-out is complete!
I’m almost giddy to announce that build-out of the new suite is complete, and we have moved into it and are settling in nicely. For those new to these newsletters, a little catch-up: Studio A has operated out of the Brickmoor, a beautiful brick house on Main St. close to the fire station downtown, since it opened in 2019. (You’ll still see our sign there, as it has not been removed yet.) But for the past several months we’ve been working on a build-out in a new location, one that will also house Randy Clark’s practice, Rediscover Counseling, as we have decided to partner together to better serve our clients. And the build-out is now finished! We can now be found at 554 Pit Rd. Suite #211.
When coming to visit, either for an appointment or otherwise, please see this page for parking instructions and how to navigate the large building to find us, as it’s not straight-forward! I’m having to get used to being in such a large building complex, as are my clients.
Open House coming up!
To celebrate the completion of the build-out and of our new partnership, plus to give us a chance to engage with the wider community, we are hosting an Open House on Sunday, September 24, 2:00 - 5:00 pm. Come see the new space, enjoy some finger foods, connect with me and Randy, and hear what new offerings we have for the community that will be announced. Everyone who attends the open house will receive a $5 coupon towards a future class or program they wish to attend. I can’t wait to reveal what I’ve been cooking up! These ideas have been stewing in me for YEARS, and now that I have a larger space, it’s full steam ahead towards implementing them.
We hope that this Open House will provide an opportunity for local mental health professionals to engage with us and explore what it looks like to incorporate the body into mental health, and for local massage therapists and other bodyworkers to engage and explore what it looks like to work in a trauma-informed way alongside mental health professionals. This leads to better care for our clients that are stuck in patterns of tension that have emotional ties or that stem from childhood wounds.
Here is the flyer we’ve been passing out about the Open House, please pass it onto friends, family, and colleagues that you feel would be interested, and see the website for more info and for more of the “why” behind our partnership. I hope to see you all there!
Emotions & Muscles
The program I have developed to help clients learn how to “be with” their emotions, instead of suppressing, avoiding, or distracting from them—which commonly leads to chronic tension and pain—is now open for enrollment for the Fall cohort. (More on that below.) “What do emotions have to do with tense muscles?” you might wonder… I am a Massage Therapist, after all, and MTs typically focus on sore or tight muscles, so it’s a question that makes sense to ask!
Well, in short, the answer to that is “a lot!” In Western society we do not generally hold a holistic view that sees the different aspects of a person as connected. Oddly, some even view it as superstitious to believe in the “mind-body connection” (cue spooky music LOL). This is chiefly the result of the sweeping shift that took place among Western civilizations during the Enlightenment period, that put rationale and scientific thinking above all other ways of knowing. Knowledge became a “brain alone” pursuit, and was no longer interested in less “brainy” things like felt sense, emotions, or intuition… because “how can intuition be proved?” the argument might go. “And if it can’t be proved, then it is useless.”
Those things have their place, but sometimes the pendulum gets swung too far, as I believe it has, and the belief becomes that anything other than that which has demonstrable proof and scientific evidence to back it up is seen as ridiculous, definitely not trustworthy, and maybe even dangerous. What are we to make of emotions, then? Of love? Of promptings by God? And all other sorts of invisible things that are hard to prove yet we know they’re true because we feel them and experience them, using something other than our cognitive brain?
The moment I started putting my hands on people when I became a Massage Therapist, it became crystal clear that despite the way our scientific minds like to “chop” the human up into different parts as if they are unrelated and independent of each other, the body—this singular, whole, integrated thing—is the storehouse for all of those parts that we want to divide up. It also became clear that the body was the vehicle for expression of all of one’s life experiences, and I therefore wasn’t just working on a physical body; I was tapping into the entire being via the body. I was forced to undergo a shift away from the view that the mind was housed in the head, to the mind being housed in the body—in the actual tissues, joints, viscera, etc.—in order to make sense of this world I was discovering underneath my hands. How else to explain all the messages I was getting from people’s bodies, before I ever had a chance to hear their stories or get to know them? I was clearly touching into something incredibly profound, as I now understand bodywork inherently does.
This isn’t woo-woo stuff, folks. I’m not a psychic, and I’m not necessarily getting my “information” from external sources, divine powers, etc. It’s simply that the body has a story, and is actively telling it, if we know how to listen. It tells it via muscular tension, fascial adhesions, organ mobility, postures, movement patterns, gait, etc. And for all you skeptics out there (I love skeptics! I am one myself!), you may find it fascinating to know that at bodywork study groups I have participated in, where numerous practitioners do their own independent “listening” of someone’s body, without any “story” or info from the person whose body we’re working with, then compare notes with all the other practitioners, we discover we almost all have the same result/finding. And this happens over and over. It’s mind-blowing and continues to fascinate me that the body communicates a coherent message… I think the body should continue to fascinate even the most body-knowledgeable folk out there; it’s mysterious how it all works and integrates. And I feel immense privilege at getting to work with these wonderful, amazing, complex structures that house all of our experiences, emotions, longings, and fears.
So there’s my long answer to the question of what emotions have to do with muscles. 😀 And that’s just part of it… I could go on and on, diving deep into the intricate details and physiological mechanics to explain how emotions involve and affect the physical structures of the body… But that’s what the Feel to Heal program is for!
Feel to Heal Program
As mentioned, the next round of the Feel to Heal program is coming up! It will meet on Monday nights from 6:45 - 8:45 pm, for 8 weeks, October 30 to December 18. In this program we get to dive deep into the hows and whys of emotions, what relationship they have with the myofascial structures of the body, how stress and trauma play a part in it all, the neuroscience of pain, the Vagus Nerve and the autonomic nervous system as the modulator of stress, and we also get to learn how to do self-treatment in a way that makes room for all that the body wants and needs to do in order to move through and out of tension and pain. This program prepares clients for one-on-one work very well, and so is a great option for those who are waiting to work with me individually. (I have even considered making it a prerequisite to one-on-one work, as it provides such a thorough intro to all that is involved in tension/pain.) I encourage you to check out the page for it on my website, where you can find a week-by-week outline for the class, read testimonials, and see pricing options… including an early bird rate that ends on September 18. Reach out with any questions you have!
See you soon?
There are many more offerings for the public coming soon, but I’m saving those for the Open House. 😉 So come! I hope to see each of you there. Stay for as little or as long as you like. I’m looking forward to it!