We integrate components of these techniques into the entire program with the intent of developing skills in sensitivity and empathy as a massage therapist and with the intent that they will be utilized in any of the following three contexts.
- First, during the 6 month program, you may find that you derive great benefit from these techniques as a client, moving through conscious and subconscious issues that have lingered for years. Many students report that this was the most valuable part of the program for them.
- Second, throughout the program we integrate the awareness techniques into bodywork sessions so that you can choose to offer it with your clients after the program as something above and beyond a standard bodywork treatment that may create a more lasting effect than a regular massage would.
- Lastly, regardless of whether you choose to pursue a career in massage therapy, these techniques can be useful for you to create more peace and ease in any relationships you have in your life, whether it’s with family, partners, children, friends, colleagues, co-workers, strangers….or yourself.
The first set of tools that we emphasize are focused on the personal level, which concerns the significant events of your life, your emotional relationship to those events, your beliefs and attitudes, and the behavioral and cognitive patterns that you’ve developed in an attempt to bring about the most wellbeing for yourself. For many, this level involves unexpressed, and therefore unresolved, traumas, as well as beliefs about ourselves. For many, PCAB offers a unique opportunity to express feelings in a setting that’s safe enough to allow for true expression and exploration. We co-create a safe space to allow for the significant events to be expressed while also getting to the heart of the matter.
Secondly, we add interpersonal tools, such as NVC, to focus on the development of communication skills to help with enhancing compassion in social contexts. These tools assist both in helping to enhance a compassionate approach towards others, and in altering speech patterns so that they are less likely to create defensiveness and more likely to create empathy in the listener and harmony in the relationship.
Lastly, we move our attention towards the transpersonal level, to bring awareness towards the part of oneself that is okay with whatever is present, including one’s own emotional responses of fear, anger, or anxiety, as well as pleasantness, joy, and love (personal level). At this level, our personal story and our interpersonal struggles lose their grip, revealing a place of deep stillness, clarity, and/or vibrant aliveness.
While none of these valuable techniques are necessary for acquiring a massage therapy license, we teach them and integrate them throughout the entire program because we believe that their use makes for more effective bodyworkers and, more importantly, more compassionate and joyful people. They offer an effective means to work through that which blocks one from authentically experiencing the fullness and aliveness of life.