Resources

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Definition

'Resources are anything that supports health. They are fundamental to healing. Creating safety involves helping to find resources and experiences of health.'[1]

Derivation

From Peter Levine in Waking the Tiger 1998?

Discussion

'All healing occurs in relationship to the amount of resources that we can bring to bear in a given situation. (‘No resources equals no get better’[2]). In healing the first priority is often to establish your ability to find your resources. Can you manifest present time, embodied awareness of those resources?

Someone who is in a stable and happy family/ relationship environment, has a strong network of friends, is fulfilled in their work, is able to express their creativity, likes where they live, has a relationship to the natural environment and has a strong sense of their body, is often in less pain and overwhelm than someone who is isolated, feels unsafe, is disconnected from their body, has no contact with the natural world and has very little stability.

Resources are very personal. They are a mix of external events or objects and internal beliefs or frameworks. They tend to generate body sensations of ease, calm, warmth, space and stillness. There is an inner sense of being ok, strength, hope, vitality and safety when we are in relationship to our resources.

As resources are so personal these words will not work for everyone - for example a sense of cool rather than warmth or dynamic energy rather than calm may be important. Resources are not fixed and cannot be imposed from the outside. The right fit of resources will emerge with practice and will evolve as work progresses.

Developing resources needs to be handled creatively and with a light touch. Too much insistence, and a formulaic approach, on finding a resource can get in the way.

Pain and suffering act like a magnet that grabs our awareness. The journey to embody our experience is a big step in developing resources. The body gives a whole new theatre in which our experience and emotions can be played out.

We can move towards and away from sensations, slow things down, control what is centre stage in our bodies in a way that is not possible with mental functioning alone.

Learning that we have emotions and sensations and that we do not need to become them is very important. Pain is unlikely to be the only sensation possible. Stepping back and finding a wider context and other sensations is a often a transformational shift.'[3]

Clinical Highlight: Resources[4]

In clinic work it is always slightly worrying to meet someone who says there is nothing that makes them feel good. Unfortunately it is not uncommon. To help someone struggling to find something that tells them they are ok you can use a simple framework:

Present time embodied sensations resources

What are you aware of in your body right now? Often you will get a string of aches and pains. You can ask someone to see if there are any other sensations present – something not painful even if it is the tip of the nose or the elbow. Humor and ordinary language can be useful here (Can you feel your bum in the chair? Its all painful, even your little toe?).

Can you find any sensations in your body right now that speak of warmth, ease comfort or a sense of being ok.

Can you feel your feet right now – if not can you try and feel your feet and a connection to the earth or table.

Memory of resources

Can you remember a time when you felt really good?

When was the last time you were not in pain?

When was the last time you can remember feeling well?

Can you pick a peak time in your life when things were going better than normal?

Objects and places can be useful – a favourite toy, a book, a picture, a familiar walk, a room.

Pets can be fantastic – sometimes the unconditional love experienced in relationship to a favourite pet is a bedrock experience.

Fantasy of resources

Can you imagine what it would be like to feel really well? Try and picture your self in a completely safe situation where you have total control. See if you could imagine what you could hear or smell or how your skin would feel, as many body sensations as possible. How would your body feel on the inside in that safe place?

You can support people to be very creative here – remember It is a fantasy or ideal. I have had clients create completely empty white rooms, castles, islands, sitting in an armchair cosied up in front of a fire, sitting in the top of a huge tree, running on grass.

References

  1. Sumner, G. and Haines, S. (2010) Cranial Intelligence - A Practical Guide to Biodynamic Craniosacral Therapy. London: Singing Dragon.
  2. Colin Perrow, BCST Teacher, 2005
  3. Sumner, G. and Haines, S. (2010) Cranial Intelligence - A Practical Guide to Biodynamic Craniosacral Therapy. London: Singing Dragon.
  4. Haines S (2010) Body Intelligence Training: Course Manual.