This process is developed by Sarah Peyton and Susan Skye, both CNVC-trainers, and adapted by Pernille Plantener.
Make sure to practice the process several times with a peer both ways before offering it to clients. Respect hesitation and reluctance as an expression of protectors stepping in. Remember: Protectors are there for a reason and respecting them is respecting the client and the whole system.
This outline does NOT equip you to work with clients who experience severe childhood trauma. We encourage you to check your gut feeling as you engage in this process. Both coach and client can step out at any moment. The coach can ask the client to bring all active parts to a safe space protected by superheroes, and tell the client they can come back when there is more support or resources present.
The process is not mechanical; it is a scaffold that provides a safe structure. In this structure, allow yourself to feel what the other person feels and let yourself be moved by it. Resonance between your body and the client’s body is the most important ingredient for healing to take place.
* are mandatory steps. The steps NOT marked with a * might not apply to every client and every process.
- * The coach Self-connects by noticing any active inner voices, acknowledge their noble purpose and asking them gently to step aside.
- * Entering the space.
- Identify the client’s trigger.
- Notice the client’s body sensations and
- The emotional tone to the body sensations.
- Does the emotion have an age?
- Invite memories or work with just the sensation. Memories can be too vulnerable for the client to share, or the client might not have access to them.
- * Safety.
- Ask the protector that protects this memory to step forward, and ask for its permission to visit the past along with the client.
- If it doesn’t allow permission, go no further. Instead, explore the good reasons it has for saying no.
- * Time travel
- Ask for the original situation and time travel to it; both client and coach travel.
- * If the situation is dangerous for the younger one, freeze the situation (disintegrate or hide the people present.)
- * The healing power of resonant empathy.
- Empathize with the younger part.
- With experienced time-travellers, you can ask them to empathize with their younger part.
- If there is frozenness: acknowledge the horror, shock, overwhelm, terror.
- Acknowledge the difficulty of the situation—an important empathy step.
- * Measure the progress.
- Check-in regularly with the younger one’s body (“How does the little one’s body feel right now?”).
- As long as there is any kind of numbness or tension, continue empathizing.
- You can ask: “What else does the little one want us to know?”
- Perform child rescue
- Use imagination to bring the younger one to safety. Invite super heroes, people the client respects, international leaders, Marshall Rosenberg, the client’s adult Self or somebody else.
- Be succinct. Imagine every detail of the rescue operation.
- Update the system
- Ask the client to tell or show a film of their life to the younger one.
- Check in afterwards how the younger one feels about it.
- * Make sure there is enough Self present
- Ask how the client feels about the younger one.
- Any response other than synonyms of the 8 C-words of Self, ask the part that answers your question to step aside and check again.
- Check if there is anything else that wants to be said before travelling back.
- Ask if the younger one wants to come along. If yes, encourage the client to install it in her home or her body.
- If not, ask the client to imagine a safe space where she can visit her younger part.
- Create action steps for how the client will remember and honor the younger one (a picture on the bed shelf, check in with her one minute every morning and evening for a week, wear a piece of jewelry she got at that age, draw a picture of her, etc.)
- Taking the healing and learning into the present situation
- Explicitly say that now you will be traveling back to the current month and year.
- Bring the original trigger in again and see if a shift has happened.
- Brainstorm and choose action steps.
- If no shift; be curious about the client’s active protectors and set a time and date for a follow-up session.
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