Somatic Experiencing

Elana Chasser, LCSW, CSAT, CPTT, CMAT

Somatic Experiencing

Somatic Experiencing (SE) is a gentle yet powerful approach to healing from trauma that focuses on the profound connection between our bodies and our emotions. Imagine it as a bridge, connecting your emotional world with physical sensations. Bridging emotion with sensation allows the body to restore you back to a place of balance, calm, clarity, and overall wellbeing. Through awareness of sensations in the body, SE brings healing faster, because the body knows exactly what it needs to do in order to heal!

When trauma is stuck or stored in the body, people tend to feel numb or disconnected from their body. Survival instincts of fight\flight\freeze may remain active, even though the threat or danger has long passed. Trauma energy isn’t aware of time. It will show up in different ways and we may not be aware of it until pain or struggles surface in our current life situation, physically and\or emotionally, sometimes acutely.

The wisdom of the body in healing is a powerful concept in SE. By tuning into bodily sensations, we enter into a dialogue with our own inner wisdom. We learn to notice activation as it shows up in the body, and how to discharge it. We gently explore the physical reactions, emotions, and thoughts associated with the trauma and gain a window into our inner world without judgement or pressure. We drop down from our heads and into the places where trauma is stored in the body. The body has all the wisdom it needs to let go of, or discharge, trauma energy. This process is like releasing a pressure valve. When the body releases this stored energy, it completes its natural healing cycle and creates new neuropathways in the brain, providing a sense of relief and freedom. SE moves faster than talk therapy alone. It provides authentic healing faster because you utilize your body’s inherent wisdom for healing.

Different Kinds of Trauma
Shock trauma is a sudden, distressing event that disrupts your wellbeing and overwhelms you. Witnessing or being involved in a traumatic experience may cause the body to shut down, dissociate, or become disconnected. This adaptive survival mechanism is the body’s way of coping with sudden and intense stress.

Imagine an electrical circuit breaker that becomes overloaded, causing it to cut off all connected electricity. This safety mechanism is activated when it senses danger and functions as a protective measure. In a similar way, when faced with sudden and intense stress, the human body's adaptive survival mechanisms, such as with shock trauma responses, can be likened to a safety system. These responses dim awareness of both physical and emotional distress, acting as a form of protection during overwhelming situations.

Developmental Trauma describes chronic, pervasive trauma that occurred early in life and within a child’s most important relationships. For many people, developmental traumas come from growing up with addiction or mental illness present in a family member, or experiences such as physical, sexual, or emotional abuse or neglect.

Developmental trauma causes overload to a child’s system over time and naturally, children discover coping mechanisms to survive the pain they are exposed to and feel. These coping strategies were useful for survival when young but are no longer useful, perhaps even harmful, as people grow into their adult lives and relationships.

SE works with releasing the stuck energy of these different kinds of trauma. Its belief in the body’s inherent wisdom and the brain’s plasticity is kind, gentle, and hope-giving. I look forward to working with you on your path towards releasing what is stuck for you and helping you discover freedom from what has been lodged inside for perhaps, many years.

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With over 30 years of clinical practice and having had the privilege of working with many individuals and couples, I've consistently witnessed the incredible drive people have to find relief and heal their pain. It's truly remarkable how we can transform our lives.

If you've noticed patterns in your choices or behaviors that aren't serving you or helping you reach your goals, it's important to approach them with curiosity and compassion. The good news is that these patterns can change!

My approach is rooted in encouragement and support for your growth and healing journey. Together, we will align our efforts with your personal goals to enhance your overall quality of life and your relationships. You're not alone in this, and I'm here to walk this path with you, guiding and supporting you every step of the way.

Somatic Experiencing Testimonial

I am so grateful for the life-changing journey I've experienced with Elana. Her unwavering support, empathetic listening, and insightful guidance have been instrumental in navigating the different struggles I go through. Through our sessions, Elana creates a safe and nurturing space for self-reflection, allowing me to explore and understand the root cause of my thoughts and emotions.

Elana's expertise not only helped me navigate challenging situations but also provided me with practical tools and coping mechanisms that have proven invaluable in my daily life. Her somatic approach to therapy goes beyond addressing immediate concerns but gives me a deeper understanding of myself and empowers me to make positive, lasting changes.

I wholeheartedly recommend Elana to anyone seeking a dedicated and skilled therapist. Her compassion, professionalism, and commitment to facilitating personal growth make her the unbelievable therapist that she is.
- CE

Somatic Experiencing
Elanna Chaser Headshot

Elana Chasser,

About Elana Chasser

Working as clinical social worker for over 30 years.
Work history: Residential Treatment Facility for emotionally troubled adolescents, domestic violence shelter, outpatient mental health clinic – supervisory role, private practice since 2005.

LCSW Licensed-Clinical-Social-Worker
CSAT Certified-Sexual-Addiction-Therapist
CPTT Certified-Partner-Trauma-Therapist
CMAT Certified-Multiple-Addiction-Therapist

Licensed in:
New York and Massachusetts

Elana Chasser, LCSW, CSAT, CPTT, CMAT

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