Orienting, Regulating, Resourcing
This chapter has a detailed discussion on the autonomic nervous system, states of activation and deactivation, hyper- and hypoarousal, and the role of the left and right hemispheres of the brain. Providing three different case examples, I demonstrate the methodology that enables affect regulation and establishes greater homeostasis in the system. The method involves engaging the right hemisphere of the brain by orienting the client toward something pleasurable, a positive ‘resource’ to modulate arousal: in this way the unconscious is enlisted as a guide in the process of affect regulation.
We see how the unconscious, through an image or the attraction of an object in the room, provides the right antidote for the presenting symptom or complex. We deactivate the default positions of fight, flight or freeze, bringing greater resilience to the system. We bridge psyche and soma with the ‘here and now’ somatic practices using: interoception, felt sense exploration, neuroception, and mirroring, thereby expanding the client’s window of tolerance, and creating greater coherence and fluidity in the system.
We align with Jung’s concept of the self-regulatory capacity of psyche and soma–an innate impulse toward wholeness, which Jung speaks of as intrinsic to all nature.