CST: A listening that is asking. The patient is the teacher.
Updated: Sep 8
Early on in my study, teachers within Upledger Institute would speak about the patient as the teacher. I remember feeling very curious.
When we sit with someone to listen to their overall craniosacral system we are to consider our approach as one of a student listening to a teacher.
What is the type of listening? It is receptive. It does not presuppose. It doesn't prejudge.
It is a listening that is asking. I ask, "what is needed at any given moment?" and then I follow the indications. This type of listening respects the deep wisdom of each person, and each body and requires an open mind and trust that the body's wisdom will share.
This is often a shift in perspective; a disruption to the traditional power dynamic we experience in appointments where we are seeking care, and where we go to feel better in our bodies. So early on this was a welcomed reorientation on any ideas I had about therapist and client going into this work. I am revisiting it here because it is really an important first step in this work for the client to take in. It can take time for a new client to begin to listen to the body in this way.
It can take time for a client to slow down and recognize one's own body as one's guide; whether in a CST session, at the side of a stream, in breathwork, while creating, or in meditation.
In time, there is the potential for clients to learn to trust that the body holds their story, and is a dear friend during this short and precious life. Your body holds great wisdom. If you attend to it and have patience, you can connect at a deep level to be able to know what your body needs and, in turn, what you need.
When a client asks me what I feel in a session, I will share and I will direct the client to pay attention to their own sensations because by following those, the potential for a complete restriction release at the source of the physical dysfunction will become available. This release is often rooted in an emotion connected to an experience and held in the tissue memory within the body.
I am learning alongside you at every step. Thank you for being with me here and in session.