PSIP 
Psychedelic Somatic Interactional Psychotherapy

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Graphic courtesy of the Psychedelic Somatic Institute

Biology Before Psychology

The basic fundamental approach that we hold as therapists is mental health issues are primarily biological responses coming from repressed or suppressed emotional charges. Our bodies have evolved for millions of years to be able to process trauma through the autonomic nervous system. The focus on the ANS is at the foundation to our approach. This model was developed by Saj Razvi, LPC through his early work in 2008 with Trauma Dynamics and his participation in the MAPS Phase II Clinical Trial of MDMA where Saj was a principal investigator. Steve Elfrink who is a co-founder of both OmTerra and the Psychedelic Somatic Institute was a research assistant to Saj for the peer-reviewed article for the Journal of Psychedelic Psychiatry on the PSIP Model. You can read that article here - and it is highly recommended to read it prior to contacting OmTerra. 

Why is the Autonomic Nervous System so Important?

All animals are wired to process trauma through the autonomic nervous system (ANS). The beautiful thing about the ANS is that it does require any training or techniques to process trauma - it is an innate ability that we all carry. Our challenge as people and as a culture is that we have developed incredible coping strategies to suppress and push down trauma. We distract, we eat, drink, do yoga, watch TV, take medication, do therapy, meditate or even take psychedelic medicines to heal. The challenge is these methods are designed to take us further away from what our bodies have been programmed to do for millions of years. We have become a culture where we cope with our symptoms of anxiety and depression vs. allowing the body to naturally process the trauma.

Our bodies seek something call homeostasis - a return to normal. The best example of this is our body temperature. Our body automatically keeps our body at 98.6 degrees - or close to it.  Just like our body wants us at 98.6 our bodies want us to return to a neutral state when it comes to stress, anxiety and depression.

Fight | Flight | Freeze

Most people have heard of "flight or fright". If we are startled or threatened we go into a heightened state of arousal, if things get more intense we go into flight or flight. If you are attacked by someone you may try to flee or fight back. If things get too intense or overwhelming and you cannot escape, you may go into a freeze response. A freeze response is where a person goes blank, checks out or may be the "deer in the headlights". This freeze is also known as dissociation. And dissociation is one of the most misunderstood aspects of mental health and one of our main focuses of therapy when working with clients. The beautiful thing about dissociation is that is has protected people for years. Also, as a young child if there was early childhood abuse, dissociation was a "safe place" when there was no safe place. A young child cannot fight back, but they can disappear in the fog of dissociation. The challenge with this mechanism of safety is that the event and the pain/trauma from that event lives on under the cloak of dissociation. The hopeful message for anyone with trauma is that there is nothing wrong with you - you are primarily dealing with biological responses to trauma. And within that knowing lies an incredible resource - your own body. Your body took you into these states and your body can bring you back through. That is what the PSIP model is focused on - bringing someone's body back to a homeostatic state by clearing or processing the dissociation, the held charges and the held or repressed memories. 

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PSIP 
Psychedelic Somatic Interactional Psychotherapy

Graphic courtesy of the Psychedelic Somatic Institute

Biology Before Psychology

The basic fundamental approach that we hold as therapists is mental health issues are primarily biological responses coming from repressed or suppressed emotional charges. Our bodies have evolved for millions of years to be able to process trauma through the autonomic nervous system. The focus on the ANS is at the foundation to our approach. This model was developed by Saj Razvi, LPC through his early work in 2008 with Trauma Dynamics and his participation in the MAPS Phase II Clinical Trial of MDMA where Saj was a principal investigator. Steve Elfrink who is a co-founder of both OmTerra and the Psychedelic Somatic Institute was a research assistant to Saj for the peer-reviewed article for the Journal of Psychedelic Psychiatry on the PSIP Model. You can read that article here - and it is highly recommended to read it prior to contacting OmTerra. 

Why is the Autonomic Nervous System so Important?

All animals are wired to process trauma through the autonomic nervous system (ANS). The beautiful thing about the ANS is that it does require any training or techniques to process trauma - it is an innate ability that we all carry. Our challenge as people and as a culture is that we have developed incredible coping strategies to suppress and push down trauma. We distract, we eat, drink, do yoga, watch TV, take medication, do therapy, meditate or even take psychedelic medicines to heal. The challenge is these methods are designed to take us further away from what our bodies have been programmed to do for millions of years. We have become a culture where we cope with our symptoms of anxiety and depression vs. allowing the body to naturally process the trauma.

Our bodies seek something call homeostasis - a return to normal. The best example of this is our body temperature. Our body automatically keeps our body at 98.6 degrees - or close to it.  Just like our body wants us at 98.6 our bodies want us to return to a neutral state when it comes to stress, anxiety and depression.

Fight | Flight | Freeze

Most people have heard of "flight or fright". If we are startled or threatened we go into a heightened state of arousal, if things get more intense we go into flight or flight. If you are attacked by someone you may try to flee or fight back. If things get too intense or overwhelming and you cannot escape, you may go into a freeze response. A freeze response is where a person goes blank, checks out or may be the "deer in the headlights". This freeze is also known as dissociation. And dissociation is one of the most misunderstood aspects of mental health and one of our main focuses of therapy when working with clients. The beautiful thing about dissociation is that is has protected people for years. Also, as a young child if there was early childhood abuse, dissociation was a "safe place" when there was no safe place. A young child cannot fight back, but they can disappear in the fog of dissociation. The challenge with this mechanism of safety is that the event and the pain/trauma from that event lives on under the cloak of dissociation. The hopeful message for anyone with trauma is that there is nothing wrong with you - you are primarily dealing with biological responses to trauma. And within that knowing lies an incredible resource - your own body. Your body took you into these states and your body can bring you back through. That is what the PSIP model is focused on - bringing someone's body back to a homeostatic state by clearing or processing the dissociation, the held charges and the held or repressed memories. 

OmTerra | Frequently Asked Questions

Please review this section prior to reaching out for a consultation.
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