Creating Connection Auckland Counselling & Somatic Therapy

Counselling & Psychotherapy Services

At Creating Connection we incorporate a range of mind (neuro-science based) and body (somatic, touch & neurophysiological) approaches in working with clients.

Patterns of behaviour can, of course be life enhancing but may also be limiting. They may affect mood, attitudes and relationships, impact on sense of self -worth and on feeling successful in one’s life.

The therapeutic exploration may include looking at how our young life experience and/or attachment with caregivers affects patterns of relating and wellbeing in adult life. It will also include strategies and approaches for healing. Inter-generational trauma and patterns of being are also key elements of the therapeutic approach.

As we explore the systems (family, cultural, political) and the experiences in which we have been raised, we are then better placed to understand who we are, what we want and need, and to be our authentic self. We can then have a choice about how we want to be in our lives and in our relationships.

“Together we focus on ‘what has meaning and value in my life’

and how to create a sense of balance, harmony and wellbeing.”

Creating Connection Auckland Counselling & Somatic Therapy

Counselling & Psychotherapy

Our face to face and online Counselling & Psychotherapy services can be helpful for individuals coping with

Also for clients coping with

Creating Connection Auckland Counselling & Somatic Therapy

Somatic Therapies:

Somatic Therapies can be helpful for clients coping with chronic health issues including

At Creating Connection we utlilise a range of somatic therapies including :

Creating Connection Auckland Counselling & Somatic Therapy

Somatic Experiencing ®

Somatic Experiencing ® therapy is a potent psychobiological method for resolving trauma symptoms and relieving chronic stress. It resets the nervous system, restores inner balance, enhances resilience to stress, and increases people’s vitality, equanimity and capacity to actively engage in life.

Developed by Dr. Peter A. Levine, a pioneering researcher and practitioner of trauma healing, author of 'Waking the Tiger' and 'In an Unspoken Voice - The Neurobiology of Trauma' - “trauma is about loss of connection – to ourselves, to our bodies, to our families, to others, and to the world around us.”
Watch video

Animals seem to naturally know how to restore goodness or settle. As they come out of freeze their fight/flight energy is drained off by running to escape or by the rhythmic waves of muscle contractions. This clip on YouTube demonstrates how this happens -
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This restoration doesn't and can’t happen in humans every time (we might be injured or be a child unable to escape).

We humans can also unknowingly override or control the sensations that would help accomplish this. Anticipating the return to our usual baseline is achieved via the neocortex; by making sense of this. While this certainly helps, the trauma is still going to be “felt” in the body. We can end up feeling stuck. We are waiting for the cycle to be completed, but not knowing how to do so. Our mind saying one thing and our body, via the autonomic nervous system, another.

Dr Levine (Awakening the Tiger, Trauma and Memory, In an Unspoken Voice) and others including Dr Bessel van der Kolk – (The Body Keeps the Score), the work of Dr Stephen Porges (Poly Vagal Theory), Dr Siegal – (The Mindful Brain) and now with the ability to observe what occurs in the body and brain via FMRI, have validated that trauma is experienced and stored in the body.
Somatic Experiencing ® is a body/brain centered or bottom up (body/feelings/mind) centered approach to working with the impact of trauma.

Creating Connection Auckland Counselling and Somatic Therapy

NeuroAffective Touch ®

Therapeutic Use of Touch as a Bridge to Body-Mind Integration

Our early experiences of touch lay the groundwork for our relational life. An attuned, caring touch is of the greatest importance to our brain’s development and our emotional and cognitive maturation.

Where helpful the therapeutic use of touch is utilised as a bridge to body-mind integration. We address trauma-based, unconscious emotional responses that cannot be reached through talk therapy or bodywork alone, establishing an integrated somatic foundation from which clients can build a stable, self-aware identity.

Creating Connection Auckland Counselling and Somatic Therapy

The Safe and Sound Protocol (SSP)

A practical application of Polyvagal Theory, which helps retune the nervous system
to be more regulated and resilient to life’s challenges.

This music program, suitable for adults and children has been developed by world-renowned researcher and Unyte Health’s Chief Scientific Advisor, Dr. Stephen Porges.
Polyvagal Theory focuses on what is happening in the body and the nervous system, and explains how our sense of safety, danger or life threat can impact our behaviour.
Polyvagal Theory gives us a scientific framework that supports the integration of physiological (“bottom-up”) therapies with cognitive (“top-down”) approaches to help change and improve how we feel, think and connect with others.

The Science Behind the Polyvagal Theory:
The Vagus Nerve

The mind and body are connected through the vagus nerve, the longest nerve in the autonomic nervous system, stretching from the brainstem to the colon. It is our internal control center, allowing the brain to monitor and receive information about many of our bodily functions. 

The vagus nerve helps to regulate critical aspects of human physiology, including the heart rate, blood pressure, temperature, digestion and even speaking. As the body takes in information automatically through neuroception, the vagus nerve communicates this information to the brain, which processes the signals and cues from the world around us and in turn determines how we react through three physiological states:

“Trauma is about loss of connection –

to ourselves, to our bodies, to our families, to others, and to the world around us.”

- Dr Peter A. Levine

Creating Connection Auckland Counselling & Somatic Therapy

Heart Math

HeartMath is a biofeedback training system. It offers visual and auditory feedback tools and strategies, which can be utilised in increasing physiological (body/brain) and psychological coherence, and also in supporting heart health. It is utilised either as a stand alone treatment or alongside the other therapies we offer.

When you’re stressed, your body is out of sync. Energy depleting emotions we feel when stressed, such as anger, frustration, anxiety and worry, lead to increased disorder in heart rhythms and the nervous system.

Changing Heart Rhythms

Changing Heart Rhythms

In contrast, positive/renewing emotions like joy, appreciation, care and kindness create harmony in heart rhythms and the nervous system. Other bodily systems synchronise with this rhythm, a process, scientists call coherence. Because coherence leads to increased mental clarity, wellbeing is improved.

Creating Connection Auckland Counselling & Somatic Therapy
The therapies we offer can be utilised alongside each other to facilitate wellbeing.