nervous system

Many forms of ancient wisdom techniques work on removing obstructions to the body’s natural flow which also applies to the nervous system

nervous system

With our focus on health being holistic in nature, we would like to talk a bit more about our nervous system and how the body keeps memory of past traumas which can affect physical health.

William James asserted in his revolutionary 1884 theory of how our bodies affect our feelings that “A purely disembodied human emotion is a nonentity,” 

Two generations later, Rainer Maria Rilke also wrote about the inextricable dialogue between the physical body and the psychoemotional interior landscape we call the “soul”.

Nowhere is this relationship more essential yet more endangered than in our healing from trauma, and no one has provided a more illuminating, sympathetic, and constructive approach to such healing than Boston-based Dutch psychiatrist and pioneering PTSD researcher Bessel van der Kolk. In The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma (public library).

In the book, he explores “the extreme disconnection from the body that so many people with histories of trauma and neglect experience”

Certified Somatic Experiencing Practitioner and Relationship Therapist, Tanmaya George talks about the “biology of balance”.

Our nerves transmit information. The part of our nervous system called the autonomic nervous system ensures the communication between the brain and the rest of the body. It controls involuntary body functions such as breathing, blood pressure, heartbeat and the dilation or constriction of blood vessels.

For example, when we feel nervous, our hearts will start beating faster and the way we breathe changes. This is not something we consciously choose to do. Rather, it is an involuntary response of the body to a stimulus in our environment. Conversely, when we relax and support the body in realising that it is safe our heart rate and breathing slow down, our sensations change.

Acupuncturists and many forms of ancient wisdom techniques work on removing obstructions to the body’s natural flow which also applies to the nervous system. 

At times our system can get stuck in either hyper or hypo-arousal states. So we can find it hard to relax or to get active. This is usually when we haven’t been able to fully allow an experience to “flow” through us. Maybe we didn’t feel safe to experience it, or maybe something very abrupt prevented us from completing an experience, movement, or reaction. 

This is where Somatic Experiencing at help.

What is Somatic Experiencing?

Somatic Experiencing® is a pioneering body-based approach to overcoming trauma, shock and other stress disorders.

It is the life’s work of American psychotherapist Dr. Peter A. Levine, who, through combining the fruits of his study of stress physiology, psychology, ethology, biology, neuroscience, indigenous healing practices, and medical biophysics alongside over 45 years of successful clinical application that this was methodology was developed.

The Somatic Experiencing approach aims to safely release traumatic shock ‘frozen’ in the body at times of overwhelm, allowing for a natural transformation of both PTSD and the wounds of emotional and early childhood trauma.

Somatic Experiencing offers a way to explore where a person is “stuck” in the stressful fight, flight or freeze responses, and provides practical clinical tools to resolve these fixated physiological states. It teaches simple, effective skills that mobilise the body’s innate self-healing systems – the same physiological processes that mend broken bones and fight disease.


Any overall wellness advice would always talk about the concept of balance. Sayings such as “All things in moderation” all lend credence to the wisdom of balance and the health aspects that come with it.

As such, we have to pay attention to the signals our body gives us and consider how our mental, physical and emotional health all interplay.

For more information on Tamaya and her work, please visit her website: She offers online sessions.

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