It's often a combination of suffering and curiosity that draws people toward somatic exploration.
Maybe they sense there is "something more" or "something missing".
Maybe they feel that how things have been going, the tools they have been using need an adjustment, upgrade or dramatic shifts to address their needs. They might even feel that they cannot continue down the path they have been on and deeply sense a redirect and pivot in their living experience in their bodies.
Muriel Haas works with such a woman: someone who yearns to live in their power and experience their sexuality energy in a joyful and enriching way.
On the podcast she shares:
-about her own somatic awakening and leaving behind a life of being at the mercy of her dysregulated nervous system.
-her discovery of tantra, releasing sexual trauma -connecting through rewiring our awareness to our sexual center -creating safety in whatever experience is showing up
-addressing numbness, returning to aliveness and creating calm
-getting clear on what embodiment means to her and HOW we go about it.
And so much more!
Muriel is a trauma informed somatic practitioner and feminine embodiment guide. She empowers women to reclaim their sovereignty and power by supporting them to connect with their sexual energy and the wisdom of their body.
Her approach is gentle yet powerful as she guides her clients to go deep within to connect with their innate truth.
Through somatic tools, tantric practices and various methods to cultivate self awareness, Muriel supports women on the journey from stuckness and contraction to liberation and expansion.
Follow her on instagram @murielchaas
discover more at www.murielhaas.com
And sign up for She Speaks next week!!
LISTEN WHILE READING!
Every day there is a forgetting and every moment there is the possibility of remembering. Remembering who you truly are, awakening to your body, to the inner world and experience of being alive. Here is where you find the beauty, the joy. Here is where you free your Soma. Hello everyone, I'm Amy Takaya and I have an exciting announcement. At the end of September I will be hosting my first full length retreat. Somatic awakening will take place in the San Gabriel Mountains. This three day transformational experience will include Hanosomatic movement Hands-on somatic body work by my father William Davis My cousins Seiji Oshenza and myself. We will also explore somatic yoga and mudra practice, as well as an end of the day sound healing to deepen your calm and release. Only nine spaces are available for full time participants. Day passes will be available for the Saturday activities. Right now you can get $200 off the full price of the retreat. So if you're feeling called into freedom and ease of movement, a peaceful, relaxed, nervous system, delicious plant based meals, and a fresh and enlivened way of being, go to freeyoursoma.com and hold your space. Payment plans are available by request and feel free to reach out to me with questions or comments at freeyoursoma.com. Thanks again for listening and supporting this self healing revolution. Hello and welcome to Free Your Soma, Stories of Somatic Awakening and How to Live from the Inside Out. Today I'm here with Muriel Huss. She is a trauma informed somatic practitioner and feminine embodiment guide. She works mainly with women who yearn to be in their power, who want to reconnect to their sexual nature and release blockages that are holding them back. She's here today to share a bit about her own somatic journey and some of the incredible tools that she uses with her clients. So welcome, Muriel.
No, thank you so much, Amy. Lovely to be here.
Yeah. So tell us a little bit about, you know, what is it to be a trauma informed somatic practitioner? What is that? What do you, what does that mean? What do you do?
Yes, beautiful. So what I do is I support people, especially women, to get into their bodies, to regulate their nervous system, to get in touch with their soma, with the way the soma communicates and to support them release blockages, pain stuck energy that is holding them back from from expanding, from thriving, from, from being in their most authentic expression. And I'm doing that with the tools of nervous system regulation, because that is just the foundation, my opinion for it all. And connecting with the sexual energy and the body.
Beautiful. Yeah. So usually when someone is so deep into incredibly healing space and modality like this, they have come from some kind of healing themselves. So maybe you can tell us a little bit. I I you have this lovely accent, you know, where, where did you come from? What's your, what's your origin?
Yes, I'm originally from Germany, currently living in Ibiza and I've had my, obviously my own journey, which was, I want to say like a 10 year phase of dealing with anorexia anxiety, depression, abuse of all sorts of medication and just really like in the thick of it for a really long time. And I've tried all of the therapies, the sort of cognitive behavioral therapies and the modalities that we know in, in places like Germany. And none of those things were really supporting me. Like none of those things were really created long lasting sustainable change. So I was living in New Zealand where I experienced panic attacks for the first time. And I was incredibly overwhelming and I didn't really know what was happening. And then I went to a therapy that was around breath work. I was like, why the fuck do I need to learn to breathe? And then I was in this room with this therapist and he told me how to breathe. And that was a key moment where I realized like, wow, like being in my body is really fucking powerful. And I can support myself in this and I don't have to feel as powerless being in these states of anxiety. And I think that was like a key moment where I was like, okay, there's there's something out there that is not about the mind and it's not about talking and you know, that beautiful stuff. But there's something that can actually create change. And that was, I feel like one of the key moments in all my journey where I was like, okay, let's look at other things that are out there. And then I discovered Tantra. I made this, met this beautiful Tantra facilitator in New Zealand and I went to her festival and I found myself in a room full of 200 women having the most incredible energy orgasm next to all of these other women who were all having these orgasms, just from going into the body and bringing awareness to the sensations that were my body. And I was like, wow, this is fucking powerful. This is what I want to do. I made big life decisions and changed a lot of things around. And I was like, this is, this is it. So it very much came from this place of being in the darkness, being at the mercy of my highly dysregulated nervous system, which I was obviously not aware of because I'd never heard of the nervous system. And hating my body, being anorexic and sort of having all of these self-destructive tools and survival strategies to get through life, surviving, definitely not thriving, where I sort of, I got out of it because I discovered somatic work. And when I discovered that, I I like, this is me stepping into my power because I can take this agency, I can change my life if I want to. And I want to support other women in doing so.
Yes. Wow. What an incredible story. And you said you'd never heard of the nervous system and you were struggling with all of these, you know, kind of, it sounds like you were living in a kind of a haunted life. You were being haunted by, by your internal experience instead of empowered by it, which is, I think how, like, that's how I spent, you know, the good first part of my life was feeling like I was haunted by all the things that ever happened to me and that my body was holding so much that I didn't know how to face or to process, right? And talk therapy, as you said, you know, it can be a really great starting place. When we want to start sorting some of that stuff out when we need to start speaking it, right? But merely speaking, it doesn't really fully shift the somatic experience of those things in many ways. You know, talking about the trauma or the pain over and over can kind of be re traumatizing, right? When we're still holding that, that stress in our nervous system and we're still at a very high baseline, right? So it sounds like you had your first experience with the breathwork of actually being able to lower your baseline, right? Yourself, you know, with the with the facilitation of a skilled practitioner, but that that came from you, it came from your breath, being able to shift and change what was what was what your experience was. And that you're right, that is such a huge, powerful gift to feel that you have some control, that you have some say of what you're experiencing in your body and that you're not just a victim or haunted by, you know, all of all of what you're holding, right?
Exactly. I feel like it's this, this, I see it as like being being at the mercy of your dysregulation, being at the mercy of your conditioning, of the lack of education around all of these things. And that for me is the opposite of being in your power. You know, and when you can you when you can support yourself in these moments and you can take yourself out of the dysregulation into a more regulated state, that for me is like stepping into your power because you're in charge of your well being.
And that is one of the most beautiful feelings I feel that we can create for ourselves. Yes. And you know, what you just said is really great because I think that this is something that, you know, when you're in the beginning of this work, when people are first learning about their nervous system and learning about dysregulation, you can kind of misunderstand what regulation really means. You You think that it's like, oh, I'm going to just always be calm now. I'm not going to get dysregulated. But it's like, no, no, like, we're all going to get dysregulated at some point throughout the day, throughout the week, throughout life. That's a natural function is that we will get out of rhythm. And what you're saying is that there are tools, there are things that you can actively do to bring yourself back into balance to lower your, your baseline and come back to calm. And so it's not about staying out of dysregulation, it's about having the tools and knowing what to do when that happens, versus living there all the time. Exactly.
And creating resilience within to adapt to whatever life is throwing at us, you know, because there's always going to be stresses. And that's, that's okay. It's just a matter of how do we deal with them? And how can we transmute the overwhelm and the anxiety and the mega stress and just something that's a bit more like, okay, I can, I can breathe, and I can handle this. And I think that is the, that is the key. We don't always want to be relaxed and chill. No, that's not the goal. As you said, it's just really creating resilience, staying within this window of tolerance, where we flow up and down into a sympathetic, back into a parasympathetic and just sort of, you know, more in balance.
Yes, yes. Because, and you can probably say something about this in regards to sexuality, peace and the sexual energy, but there's positive stress too. There's ways that we can get very, very up regulated in a positive, you know, what we would determine as like a positive or pleasurable way. And from that space, we still also need to be able to come out of that and down regulate so that we can go to sleep so that we can rest, right? We can't, it's not really sustainable to stay blissed out all the time either.
Exactly. Because at the end of the day, it's just, it's activation in our system. And we can perceive that as like being the sympathetic and being fight or flight and this arousal that's really like threatening. Or it can be arousal and activation that is pleasurable. That's obviously also possible. Either way, I feel like the key is being aware of what is happening within. Like really being able to tell like, oh, I'm feeling slightly off like what's going on in my nervous system right now and what would I need in this moment? And And dealing with whatever is there.
Yes, I'm curious, you you you're speaking so beautifully about all this stuff, like how I'm curious, what was what you what were you doing before this work? What was your, what was the work field or the background that you came from before stepping into this embodiment work?
Yes, I worked as a digital strategist. I studied media management and worked in a in an agency in Berlin, had a very different life work for very big clients. And felt like I was selling my soul. You know, I have this like this, this capacity, which I think is beautiful, because I have this very strategic mind, which is very beautiful also to support my clients, because I can help them see the bigger picture and ask the right questions. So I feel like this, the strategic side of me is now very well used in this world that I'm in right now. But back in the day, it was the communication and the marketing.
Right, it was mainly for capitalistic purposes, not necessarily for creating individual personal growth in human beings. Exactly. Yeah, well, cool. I can tell there you just have a very well spoken way of delivering information, you're very precise. And yeah, maybe that's some of that's, you know, the media strategist background, but it's a a beautiful way you're applying, you're applying that in in the way that you express yourself. So kind of getting back to, you know, the feminine embodiment and the Tantra work. And it's interesting because I knew about the word Tantra and what it was before I really understood the word somatic. And now, now that I understand the word somatic so much deeper, it's like, Oh, well, Tantra is somatic, like they are basically in so many ways the same kind of thing, like these somatic practices often that we're utilizing as somatic practitioners are it's very ancient wisdom, right. And, and, and Tantra and embodiment and somatic, they all have these beautiful intersections, even if there's just different language that we're using about them, we might be using more scientific language talking about nervous system regulation, or in Tantra, they may be talking more symbolically, you know, about masculine and feminine energies or things like this, right. Can you give us what your personal definition of embodiment, what is embodiment to you? What does that mean?
Yeah, beautiful question. For me, embodiment means essentially being in my body. And it means making decisions, letting my body guide me in my decisions. And it means being in a deep connection with my body. And having awareness for what is happening within. And always coming back to the connection that I have with my soma. And that that could be in everyday life situations that could be in business. It's like, when I make decisions, I check in with myself, like, how does my body feel? Like, am I going into contraction? Someone is asking me a question. And I just noticed what's happening within. Is my body expanding? Or is my body contracting? Is it a no? Is it a yes? Is it maybe like what's happening somatically? And for me, this is an incredibly powerful tool to move through life when you are connected with your body. Because the mind, obviously, there's all of this conditioning, there's different voices, there's different ideas, different influences from different people, your primary caregivers, everything. And when we're deeply connected to our body, and we have a practice where we release the conditioning and the stuck energy, and and sovereign within, I feel like this is the most beautiful tool to guide us through life. And that for me all falls under the embodiment.
Yeah, so you're talking about kind of a real time moment to moment awareness, right? Because it's not like we just become aware of our bodies once. It's like, it's always something that we have to continue to bring awareness to every moment, like when we have the space for that, obviously, like, you know, we have to attend to our environment. If we're in a conversation with someone, we need to attend to them as well. But we can learn to also at the same time be present in what we're experiencing to notice the changes and the shifts as they're occurring within us, right? You You a moment ago, it's really interesting about, you know, our mind holds conditioning, right? And our body is holding conditioning. And so I think for many people, you know, when they, I know this was true for me, when we start to, like, become aware of our bodies, when we have been ignoring them, when we've been dissociating from them, start to become aware, it's a little confusing at first, because you're not really sure whether it's your body's like wisdom or whether it's the conditioning, right? And one way that I sometimes will structure at it with my clients is talking about like, there's the conditioning, and the conditioning is part of our body's wisdom. It was an adaptation that our body, our nervous system made at one point for our survival, right? But we don't have to stay stuck with that adaptation running the show. It doesn't have to be the lens through with we, which we experience our lives, right? So when we're starting to figure that out and discern that, like, what are some tools that you have for being able to figure out, is this me having a fear response? Or is this me legitimately not wanting to do or, you know, be around someone?
Yeah, beautiful question. And I feel like that's such a like moment to moment situation. But for me, it's like cultivating a practice of deep listening constantly, because I feel like when we first get into this work, or this world, this path of embodiment, yes, as you said, it's not always easy to write a well tell, tell like, what's going to happen, what's what's happening? And where's it coming from? It's this, this question of, like, is it my intuition speaking? Or is it like a fear response? Is a trauma behind it? And for me, I think the difference is that when there's trauma, when there's fear, there is a there's a charge versus when it's intuition, it's it's just a bit more like, it's just karma. It's like, it's very hard to describe, I feel like it's very individual that you need to feel it in your body, to be able to tell like what's happening. But usually, for me, when it's connected to fear and trauma, there's a story that comes attached to it. There's a story, something happened in the past that is immediately coming up. Versus when it's a sort of, in the moment situation of my body is just right now contracting to it. It's like going into inquiry. It's like listening to your body. And then for me, what I always, I do that myself, and I share that with my clients is sit down, and take out your journal, and just go into like a practice of, of asking the questions. Because I think it's really powerful to work bottom up and top down, and go into inquiry with your body, but also your mind and ask yourself like, where is this coming from right now? What am I feeling? Is there fear behind it? And just going, going into inquiry with yourself through journaling for me is like a really powerful thing.
Yes. Yes. So with your clients, you, you take them through processes. Do you work a lot over Zoom? Is Is mostly on Zoom? Yeah. Okay. And then, and then you might have them do assignments where they're writing or they're doing practices or activities that will support the continued shifts that you're making with them on the Zoom call.
Yes, totally. So we go into their SOMA usually during the course, and then we obviously have time afterwards for integration and for talking about things. And then it's really much keeping the momentum going and creating a space for integration afterwards. Why I advise them like, take your time, be gentle with yourself, and sit down and reflect on what's happening for you. And just notice everything that has come up and like welcome and accept everything that is coming up. And in this space, there's so much transformation that can happen. So much growth and so much, like, wow, okay, cool. This This this is coming up for me. My body is telling me things and I can listen. Like, yeah, it's incredibly empowering.
Yes, that deep listening that you're referring to, it's, and, and accepting what's coming up. I feel like that can be challenging when we're experiencing feelings that we like have identified or regarded as negative, you know, like even it doesn't even have to be like a really, you know, I sometimes feel like the more extreme negative emotions are almost easier for me to accept than like the more subtle ones. Like, for example, like resistance, when I feel there's resistance in me to, you know, to something that's happening to my life, you know, that's not necessarily like a bad thing. It's not, if it was really a dramatic thing, maybe I would have more easily accept my resistance, but it's like resistance about something small, something that is, you know, not a big deal, right? And I catch myself in my resistance and I resist my resistance. And it's like, we can go meta like that, we can be like resisting our own resistance, not wanting to listen to it, not wanting to hear it. And that's actually kind of the same thing as accepting our resistance, because it's, you know, it's just going the other way. It's that deep listening that you're talking about where it's like, whatever the experiences that's coming up, I can become aware of myself and kind of watch myself in it and be with myself in it in kind of a neutral way, right? And And that being with it that starts to help it unwind and help it shift, right? In my somatic work, it's like the work I do is very literal, it's with like muscles, right? And maybe you're familiar with this method, but like we go with the contractions instead of against them. So if a muscle is holding tight at the side of our neck, instead of pulling away from it and stretching your neck, we actually go into a conscious shortening of that muscle and then really, really slowly, slowly come out of it. And we maybe do that a number of times until the muscle starts to make more space and lengthen and relax, right? And so I always love to hear about like, you know, from other somatic practitioners kind of how this, this somatic, you know, what it almost feels like so magic, right? It feels like a magical thing of like going with something, like our negative feeling or emotion and watching how it's that being with it and not resisting it, you know, and very tenderly, it starts to evolve, it starts to shift, it starts to change, right?
Yeah, totally. I feel like it's this whole theme around what you resist, persist, and when we start to accept things and be with things and allow things to be, then I'm thinking especially emotions, because I feel like a lot of us are very disconnected from our emotions and how we deal with them and how we move through them and how we can be in them. So this, this resistance to feeling what is present, that is where we create the suffering, you know, and when we in this, this beautiful somatic work start to accept what's coming up for us and accept what's present and also accepting the pain that's present, you know, the actual physical pain that's in the body, allowing it to be there and, and allowing it to tell us the story, to tell us what is there and what we need to hear. So we we the space for ourselves to, to expand, you know, to, to naturally, by accepting, we create the space to move out of contraction into expansion. But it's when we resist the contraction that we create more suffering. Yes. Stay Stay it. Yeah.
Yeah, yeah, it really does, you know, when I feel like when you really discover this stuff and you start to experience it in your body, there's these little light bulbs that just go off boom, boom, boom, ping, ping and this excitement because you realize like, oh, okay, this can be applied to pretty much every place in my life that I have been avoiding or resisting, right, or finding challenge, you know, and, and that's how the somatic work that we do with our own bodies starts to change our lives, change the people who are showing up in our lives and change our relationships and change all of these things to be more aligned with our true spirit, right, with our true calling. It's, it's really powerful stuff. Yeah.
It is. It's beautiful.
Yeah. So I would love to talk more. I'd love to hear you say a little bit more about the sexuality piece, you know, because I feel like that, and I've had, I've had a few other people on the podcast talking about this, but not quite in depth, I would say yet. The, the sexual energy and this area, even in our bodies, right, is a place where we as a collective hold a lot of wounding and we also hold a lot of charge, right, and it's a, it's a, it's the seed of a lot of our personal power. And so maybe you can share a little bit about why this is an important space in your work that you explore with women and what are some of the, the blockages or the things that get in the way of that, that part of our nature being expressed in a healthy way.
Yeah, beautiful questions. I feel like because I support women to step into their power to reclaim their sovereignty, there's no way around working with the pussy and connecting with the pussy because for us women, we know that our sexual energy for all of us is our sexual energy is our life force energy is our creative energy. And whenever that is blocked and energy is not flowing the way it's supposed to flow or the way we want it to flow, we can't achieve anything we want to achieve. And when we want to step into our power, we have this beautiful sex center within our body that holds so much wisdom and so much, so much power, so much force, and especially for us women now and talking about my own experience as well, like when we make decisions from our room and our pussy and we can connect to the wisdom that is there, we can access a different portal that can just transport us somewhere else. And at the same time, when there's blockages, when there's trauma, or even if there's just a disconnect, you know, there's a lot of women that I work with that are initially quite disconnected from their pussy, they're disconnected from their sex, they're not enjoying the sex that they're having, or they are struggling to feel the pleasure in their body, or they need to release the conditioning around what it means to be a woman in a heterosexual relationship. There's obviously a lot of sexual trauma, like I barely know any woman who hasn't experienced any sort of event that was sexually traumatizing. So it really is about first of all deeply connecting with our sex center. It's creating a relationship with our pussy, and it's, yes, releasing the trauma, releasing the stored emotions that are present for a lot of us, and it's also reconnecting with our pleasure. Because we get to experience so much pleasure in our body, and we can explore this pleasure through our pussy and our sex center. And And feel like, for us women, I feel like most of us haven't really been encouraged to explore our bodies and explore our pleasure when we were younger. Like masturbation was always a bit of a taboo for women, like like normal that boys wank, but girls masturbating, self-pleasuring, it's not really a thing, you're not really encouraged, you're not educated on it. Sex education doesn't tell you about pleasure, at least not back when I was in school. So it's this like connecting with your pleasure and the pleasure that you can feel in your body, and you can feel pleasure in your body in all of the different areas. And when we start to connect with the pleasure we feel in our pussy, and the orgasmic potential that is within us, this is us stepping into our power, because we can then meet the other person, whoever that is, that is, that we're connecting with sexually, and we know what we like, we know what we want, we are connected to our body, we're in a connected to our pussy, we know when our pussy is a no, we know when our pussy is a yes, we cultivate, and that's what I do with my clients, is we cultivate body sovereignty, you know, where you are deeply connected with your body and you know when your body is a yes or a no to something, or maybe, and what your body needs then. And And really like going into this exploration where sexuality plays such a big role, and when we cultivate the pleasure and we connect with the pussy, and we learn to move the energy through our system, we We learn to channel this energy and use it for all of the things that we want to use it for. You know, it's like we can pour it into our relationships, into our business and into the things that we're passionate about. But it first requires us to be really connected with it. And I think this is like really fucking important.
And when you're saying connected to it, you know, I think sometimes we forget that a connection in our bodies is literally like a neural pathway. It's a neural pathway from some kind of action and activity, right? Whether that's bringing like our awareness or our awareness in our minds or you could think in your heads, but really it's in our nervous system to that area in our bodies through sensing and feeling. Or it's from external touch, you know, from touching ourselves from receiving feedback from our nerve endings on the outside of our body that then travel up. And so when you're talking about this connection, you know, I've been a few of you've ever seen or if anybody listening has seen a picture of the human nervous system. But if you haven't ever seen a picture of it before, it's incredibly beautiful. It's so cool. It's like, it's like the roots of this tree. It's like incredible root system that travels down through our bodies. And as you're talking and I'm thinking about, you know, being kind of disconnected from that space or maybe connected in a way that isn't sovereign, right, that has some conditioning, some trauma, you know, the pathways to that area are connected with pain and suffering and contraction versus pleasure and opening and expansiveness, right? Because like, you know, in my background, I did have some sexual trauma and as a result of that, you know, there's kind of these different models of like people can become withdraw, right, you withdraw and you know, lose some sexual sex, something of your sexual energy and then there's women who do the opposite and they get like over sexed right which is, you know, if you've ever read like a biography of like a porn star or something right they often have stories like that of like they're trying to work out their trauma through like you know, acting out. And I feel like I did both at different times in my life, you know, and I'm sure there's women who are listening can relate to that. And so there were times where like, you know, physical sensations, whether it was my own sensing in, or it was like receiving like sensation from another. They were tied or linked too intensely with pain, whether it was emotional pain or literal physical pain like contracted muscles that this was a really like intense spot for me to be connected with, right? And it's only in kind of releasing the patterns, you know, and when I say that I'm again thinking about like these connections the connection you're describing as being like these connections and the links that were happening in my nervous system to that area. Right, were linked up with, you know, muscle cramping, they were linked up with pain, they were linked up with negative memories and associations, right. And it's like the rewiring that has occurred, right. It blows my mind because I didn't know that I could feel so good I didn't know that I could enjoy and feel natural in this way. You know, it just wasn't something that was available to me at earlier times in my life, you know. And so, you know what you're describing with this connection to this space it makes total sense to me because I think a lot of us spend the majority of our time in our head and in our heart. And we forget that there's a whole system here, and that it's all connected and that it's extremely intelligent, right. And so getting connected to our sexual center is in many ways drawing that energy down, right. Into the rest of our body, you know, and to get to our sexual center we got to go through our gut, which is also an intelligence center, you know, and then in order for things to really be like fully expressed I think there has to be some root activation, right there has to be a real releasing down like into the earth to. So maybe you can say a little bit of something about that since you're, you know you connect these nervous system tools with. With with the sexuality piece like how does that show up for you.
Yeah, I feel like what's really interesting that you're just talking about the root because I feel like when we're when we do any sort of work around sexuality and trauma. And it's like, I almost feel like we need to, we need to clear the whole channel, like from roots to crown. In order for the energy to flow and it's oftentimes starting with looking at developmental trauma and what happened in the childhood. You know, but this because this is where the, this is, this is when it started really early and this is deeply rooted, and this sits in our route. And when we have contraction there, literal or just metaphorically being contracted. It's going to be a lack of safety. And that is very common when people have experienced developmental trauma. And that can be really small things, you know, but people go into trauma responses and creates survival strategies. And so it's like starting there and looking at okay what what is present for you in your nervous system when we're thinking about anything that comes with your development and your childhood. Like what are your core fears. What is what is really present for you what is coming up in your relationships, because obviously in relationships we, we have the space where all of these beautiful things come up. So it's like looking at okay what is present there, what have you received in your early childhood and let's let's look at that and let's take care of you in a child before we even go any further. Because this is kind of the foundation because whatever we're doing we need to feel safe within, and there needs to be a sort of level of trust within the self, also within the world and the universe, whatever, but it's within the self and like I can feel safe in my body, because if I want to explore my sexuality I need to come back to this baseline of safety. So whatever I'm taking myself in a sexual connection or in a sexual practice or even just in a session where I connect with my sexual energy or my sexual organs. I need to be able to come back to. I feel safe right now. So it's like starting that as the foundation creating safety within creating this like awareness for what is happening in the nervous system, and then then looking okay what what what trauma is stored there and what do we need to release before we can actually safely go into the exploration of pleasure. For example, I mean for a lot of people, a lot of women that I work with, they want to feel pleasure, they want to enjoy sex they won't have a good time. So it's like before we do that but what do we need to release. And what do we need to see what is there, because when there's pain stored and there's tension is obviously stuck energy that wants to be moved before we can create the flow of energy within our whole being. It's like releasing what is there that is that is stopping the flow.
Yes, yes. And so maybe you can give us some examples of the, the how here in terms of creating safety I mean I'm sure that some of what you do is you facilitate that meaning that when the person is with you on the call, like you're co regulating with them. And you're allowing them to feel a certain level of safety in your presence in the calm and and the certainty that you have that they can be with these feelings and it won't kill them right and it won't harm them to experience whatever's coming up right. And then what kind of practices and tools do you share with them to keep doing this on their own like what what is it, what do they do to to create that safety what are some of the practices you use.
Yeah, I feel like what's really powerful is being able to come back into the present moment, because usually when when the present moment, and we look around our room, and we look at our we feel our body. This is a moment where we're not triggered where we're not in our trauma we were out of out of story. And this is where we can feel safe. Obviously, that is only when you are actually safe in your room in your body. So, but for me a key part is coming back to the present moment. So how, what can I do when I want to feel safe within. I want to come back into the present moment I want to come back into my body, because there might be stories going on in my mind, and there might actually be physical sensations that are really uncomfortable and really challenging to deal with thinking about anxiety. This could just be physical sensations. So it's like learning to regulate your nervous system, becoming aware of what is happening in my body let's say I'm feeling anxiety. This looks like I'm feeling contraction in my chest and it feels tight and it feels really uncomfortable right now. Okay, so what can I do to take myself out of this experience. First of all, I can feel it. I can notice what is there. And I can tell myself that this is okay right now this is probably anxiety that is in my body right now. So basically like reassuring your experience validating your experience and accepting it from this like mind level. And then I love to give my clients like a big toolkit that they can then choose from depending on what they think they need in the moment. But I feel like the key when we're talking about nervous system regulation and bringing yourself back into the parasympathetic is using your breath. So deep, ballet breathing, elongating your exhale to stimulate your vagus nerve. And bring yourself back into parasympathetic is just key because as soon as we go into anxiety in our nervous system is in fight or flight. We are likely breathing in a very shallow way and we're breathing into our chest, which just like enables even more of this activation. So getting down into the belly breathing into belly. I personally feel like it's really powerful to when we're in these states to just become aware of our surroundings look around like what is present. Super helper for the mind to just found how many pictures are in the room or just become aware of like felt sense like what am I feeling around me what can I touch. And how does this pillow feel in my hand right now, bringing awareness to your to your senses and also be really supportive for me one of the most powerful things that is so simple and that's why I love to share it is viewing. I don't know if you've heard of doing before, but it's stimulating the vagus nerve through sounding. So the sound is basically the sound of the so VOO and you're basically just going to go into. And you're doing that for as long as you want. I sometimes have moments where I'm like frantically washing the dishes because I need to get out of the house and I feel like I'm actually quite stressed right now because I'm in a rush and then I'm standing then I'm booing. I'm from my system down regulating I can feel my system. Sowing down and getting a bit calmer. And that is me creating safety in my system. And it's these tools like any sort of humming or singing. That can bring me and my clients back into parasympathetic and feeling like I am in charge of my experience right now and I can support myself in this. It's this this agency piece that I think is really powerful. We create safety by acknowledging the present moment and by having the tools to regulate our nervous system. So our system actually feels safe. And I think that's that's really powerful. Anything that gets you into the body shaking. I feel like it depends on the on the moment that is there. The other day I thought like I was in freeze emotionally freeze emotional numbness. I was like oh it's really uncomfortable. Like it's OK that it's there but how can I bring myself back into activation. So I took a cold shower in the middle of the night. You know which was which brought me back into activation and then I was like OK how can I bring myself back into relaxation. And I had a banana and I went outside and I just I was just breathing and I felt the cold air on my skin and I realized I am safe. And I can take myself out of these states and this is a journey obviously that doesn't happen from one moment to the other. This is cultivating self safety within and also creating your own toolkit and support system which I think is keen on this journey.
Yes well because different tools are going to be needed at different times in different environments right with different responses that we're having right and also for different nervous systems because everybody's nervous system is wired uniquely. And what feels comforting and relaxing to one person might you know feel confronting and scary to another person right and that also shifts and changes. So I think it's really great that you look at it as like a toolkit and you seem like someone who's like constantly gathering more information yourself and learning more tools and learning more methods for for coming back in and for becoming more. And I'm also I'm also I'm what's happening as it's happening so that you can kind of embrace and take take control of the experience instead of having the experience controlling you. Exactly.
Yeah totally and I feel like we as humans are nervous system is wired to keep us alive for us to survive. So we will always use tools to change the state that we're in. And when we don't have these it's called them a healthy tools we will likely use things to get us into a different state like. Drugs like alcohol like any sort of self destructive behavior that will create the adrenaline rush or it will give us this feeling of distraction or it will give us a sense of joy. You know we will do these things until we realize they're actually not working very well for us and until we create this beautiful toolkit of healthy tools. And in my opinion the toolkit the bigger the better but also it's creating habits around actually using them because we can we can collect all of these tools and have them in our mind but when it comes to it. It needs to be almost like an intuitive decision of like OK I want to bring myself out of freeze what I'll do to activate I'll take a cold shower or I'll bite on a chili and I know this will bring up this sensation. You know it's like having all of these tools and playing with them and exploring them that is really powerful.
Yes and the the activation this idea of like where numb were dissociated were disconnected and you're inviting people to bring back sensation into their bodies through some kind of action that they're taking through some kind of physical experience is that correct. Exactly. And that brings the aliveness back and then the next step you said is is calming from there. So getting connected can involve some kind of experience like you said a chili or a cold shower. You know or maybe for somebody it's just taking like a little power walk right around the block and something like that right and then once you're connected again to to invite in some of that safety some of that quiet some of that calm. Exactly.
And you know what I feel like the key really is and that's the unfortunate thing that we're lacking in the in the world that we live in is this awareness for our nervous system because we might feel OK like I feel emotionally numb. I might not be able to call it emotionally numb but I feel something really uncomfortable and it's having the awareness that your system is in that state and that your system. You you're not likely going to go from because because numbness and freeze is also a parasympathetic state. It's also vagal which we need to have the awareness that we first need to get back into sympathetic in order to then bring us back into parasympathetic into relaxation. So it's just like I feel like it's a very empowering thing to learn these things and within yourself and explore them to then being able to say like OK this is where I'm at and this is what I can do and this is what I can try and then trying these things and they something will very likely work and support me. I'm very fortunate very fortunate very fortunate very fortunate very this situation and I think this is incredible like what we can do for ourselves in these moments to support our system our emotional state creating emotional mastery almost is is really beautiful.
Yeah yeah so what do you think you know like you know your clients probably come to you with a whole bunch of different challenges or reasons or you know places that they're starting from. What do you think really drives a person or what are some of the things that drive a person to take these steps in healing what's going on with them. Is it that you know people coming to you after they've like had a relationship fall apart. Is that a common thing or maybe they're coming to you because they're you know having panic attacks or they're in pain or someone just sometimes coming to you for a more neutral kind of reason. What do you what do you think really drives a person to start taking steps to do this work.
I feel like it's it's two things it's either the suffering is so big that you want to change something or you learn hard somewhere that there's a life out there that is more joyful more peaceful more beautiful more expensive and like oh maybe I could do that maybe I want that. And so it's like these two motivations that I feel like are really big and a lot of the times people are coming because they're suffering. You know but because they feel a lot of the times with my clients is it's a disconnect. It's like I've heard of this embodiment thing and like feminine energy and like what is that like what's what does that do and what. What what is a woman in her power and like and how can I be that. And a lot of those the women that I work with they are in relationships in which there's actually not really fulfilled because how can they be if they're disconnected from their sex. You know if they don't know what they want they can't ask for what they want because they don't know what they want because there's a disconnect. Or there is a lot of suffering in terms of anxiety and nervous system dysregulation and they might not be able to call it that but they feel the sensations and they feel like they're held back by their system and they want more and they're stuck. It's this feeling of stuckness and contraction and whatever that looks like it could be limiting beliefs around self worth and limiting beliefs around what they can achieve. Or it's like physical blockages where pain is then they can't really get anywhere. And it's really this this path from from stuckness and contraction to liberation and expansion. And I feel like there is this subtle knowing of surely there must be more out there for me like surely I see these other people maybe I see them on Instagram maybe I see them and know them in real life. But they're living something that I want to live and I hear all of these words but I can't make sense of them. So what does it mean to be in my body like what does that what does how does that support me and I want to try it. You know there's there's generally a curiosity and there is also a lack of connection to the body and a lack of awareness for the body and a lack of knowledge and obviously actual embodiment of all of these things. So when my clients then journey through that the the transformation is so so beautiful because dropping out of the mind and into a body into your body and making that a more regular thing is everyone says that everyone experiences that is incredibly powerful and healing and beautiful and expensive and the way we can create our lives. And when we do that is just wonderful.
Yes, yes. So it sounds like the, you know, the curiosity is the thing that you see you know it's kind of like a combination of the curiosity and the suffering. Right is what's drawing somebody into wanting to to dig in and and feel better and also discover right because it really is a journey of discovery as we start connecting with our bodies when we have not been connected to them because sometimes we're going to be surprised by what we find out. We're going to be surprised by the memories that show up and by the experiences that are possible to have right.
Yeah, it's constantly a surprise you know whatever you're doing with the body work you're experiencing or the somatic listening session that you're giving you to yourself there's always something new and it's also like wow I didn't know I could feel that I didn't know my body had to communicate that to me or I didn't know my body would manifest this in order for me to see that. You know it's just always an exploration.
Yeah, yeah. I mean that's why I think that expressing sharing talking and that's part of why I have this podcast is so that people can be part of these conversations. Right because sometimes we learn a lot just by listening and observing other people in their experience right but expressing and sharing is a huge part of integration in this work. You know, because we hear ourselves and we get like another little clue we get another little peek into what's there. We learn something new we learn something by listening to someone else's somatic experience you know, like I run an online program that's a group program. And that's a big piece of it is people getting to share after we do the somatic movement to release their their muscular tension and pain and reconnect them, you know this really deep level with their body. Then I asked them to share what did you experience today, what showed up for you was, you know, and it's like there's no right or wrong answer it could be anything. And so it's always such a delight to me to find that people have something to say they have something to say even if they've spent the last hour silently moving their body. There's a whole, there's a whole world there's a whole story that's in there. So I know you were talking about having a group experience that was coming up maybe you can share a little bit about what you do with groups.
Yeah, totally. So I'm offering a regular free embodiment journey called she speaks, which is a session of one and a half hours where we gather in a group online. And I invite the participants into a practice or different practices in which we learn to listen to our body and where we create somatic awareness. So basically learning to feel any sensations that are present to notice any emotions that are there, any thoughts that are coming up when we're in our body. And with these practices we explore different states that we can move into. And I feel like it's for me this is the starting point to the embodiment journey is to become aware of the fact that our bodies are always communicating. And they always have something to say and it's a matter of are we listening and are we able to listening. And it's with these sessions I create this space, which I feel like is key. Creating the space even for yourself to sit there and take the time out of your day and tend to your body and tend to your soma and create the space for it to speak and to listen to it. So that's why I love these sessions because this for me is like, when we start doing this, it becomes a habit it becomes a daily thing that we do naturally, where we then are like in challenging conversations and we feel our system contracting. And then instead of being in the contraction we can start to breathe and release the energy that we're feeling. We don't leave the conversation feeling depleted or drained, but we can hold it. You know, and that all starts with listening to the body and learning like what it needs and a big part of this these sessions is also like, yes, listening to the body and hearing the stories and everything that comes up. And what does your body need in this moment, because I feel like that's a really it's a key piece in this journey towards feeling empowered is being able to know what it is that you need and give it to yourself.
Yes, yes. Oh wow, I, I agree, you know, part of the work that I do is I do somatic food coaching or consultation and that's actually a question I have people ask themselves when they're dealing with emotional eating patterns, right, where they have this pattern and it's unconscious or they just, as soon as they're stressed or they're overwhelmed or something's going on, they are opening a bag of chips in their car, you know, or they're grabbing the box of cookies or they're, you know, whatever it is and I will ask themselves to see if they can catch themselves in the moment, and ask, what is it that I need right now. Is it, is it that I need this bag of popcorn or whatever it is, you know, or is there something else I need, and be curious for the answer. Because this is a practice that I have done with myself it sounds like something very similar to what you're talking about where we're asking, you know, do I need this treat or do I need to talk to a friend do I need to share and express the feelings that I'm having. Do I need some activity do I need to move in my body do I need to walk around. Do I, you know, any number of things and it's an intuitive moment to moment, like answer that you're going to get. Right. Like sometimes might be like I need the goddamn cookies, and you're just going to eat a few more cookies and then you can ask yourself again, did it change I just had some cookies do I still need them, or do I need something else now. Is it different. Oh I need some water my body's thirsty let me go do that. Right and learning to have those responses so yeah I love it I love how these things can be like we were saying before these somatic philosophies can be transferred to different areas in our lives, and have the same powerful transformative effect. Right. So in terms of she speaks is this, you know how many people do you get in a group in for an hour and a half like what's the, what's the capacity that you take for a group at that, those three sessions.
I, it totally depends on who's like what's available like I'm super open for anyone to join. Because it's very much like everyone is doing their own journey, I guide the journey, you can have your camera off you can be in your own space. And feel safe in your space, you know without being seen as well because that can obviously be a thing. And it's, it's so free you can you can share afterwards. And if it's a big group, you can feel into how that's feeling it's small group. It's just very much like whoever's feeling it is showing up and that's just really beautiful. Nice.
Nice. Yes. So where could our listeners learn more about this. This event that's coming up next week.
Yes. So you could head over to my Instagram, which my handle is Muriel and you are IEL C H A S. And I'll share about the event and have the links to sign up.
Well, yeah, that'll be in the show notes. So you'll be able to see that. Thank you so much for sharing your story today and sharing all of your wisdom and it sounds like the work that you're doing is really transformative it's really exciting and a beautiful application of your strategic German brain combined with your somatic, you know, discoveries that you've made on your own and continue to make. Yeah. Yeah.
Thank you so much for having me. It was beautiful to chat with you and see the similarities in our work and just like, yeah.
Yeah, totally. Cool. Yeah. So we'll catch up with you again soon. Check out the show notes for anybody who's interested follow Muriel on Instagram to learn more about her practices her offerings. I'm sure they're incredible. I'm looking forward to learning more myself. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.