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Katie Rose
from: Katie Rose
Category: Voicework

The Therapeutic Voice

The Therapeutic Voice

One of the great honours of my work is sharing sound with holistic professionals at organisations such as forthcoming courses at the
Holistic Healing College and the College of Psychic Studies.  It’s really inspiring when practitioners realise they can easily and profoundly amplify their practice with an increased awareness of the power of voice and sound. 
So here’s a few thoughts about the power of the Therapeutic Voice.

Therapists are often natural empaths who can fine tune their listening antennae to pick up a wealth of important information about their clients.  Many ancient systems of medicine including Traditional Chinese Medicine use vocal diagnosis to tune into the state of a person’s wellbeing - for example a healthy laugh indicates joyful heart energy, whilst a nervous laugh can indicate anxiety and emotional strain.  We’ve all heard someone say ‘I’m fine’ tersely through gritted teeth and understood that they were anything but fine.  The pitch, speed, rhythm, timbre, volume and tone of a person’s voice can give us many signals beyond the actual words they are saying.    

Inviting Expression
Clients can feel very nervous about sharing their feelings so we can support and invite their expression by using simple breathing and sounding techniques including deep breathing, sighing, yawning, stretching and toning (which is singing simple vowel sounds).  This supports the client to relax and open to expression in a safe, abstract way.  E-motions start to move when our body moves, so gentle breathing, sounding and movement can enable your client to start feeling safe to connect and share their feelings.

Vocal Guidance
As therapists our voice is crucial in helping our clients feel relaxed and able to trust the process we are guiding them through.  It acts as a sonic lighthouse - so developing clarity of intention is crucial so that the tone of our voice is in tune with our communications and can be easily understood by the client.  We can set our own personal intention and support our clients to set clear intentions so that the session proceeds with clarity.

Grounding the Voice
Keeping ourselves grounded and stable will enable us to support our client when they are feeling vulnerable. We can do this by breathing slowly and deeply and engaging our abdominal muscles when we speak, so that the voice is anchored in the lower body and has a deeper, warmer tone.  By doing this we reassure the client that we are offering a still, safe place for them to share.  

Creating an Open Space
Softening the tone of the voice and speaking from an empathic place of connectedness enables us to offer heartfelt support to our clients.  Instead of preaching, fixing, advising (head based responses) it can be more powerful (and more difficult) to sit back and listen and give a warm mmm, yes or encouraging affirmation. Clients often find their own answers and gain insight as they talk things out and they will sense that you are supporting their own intuitive and creative awareness, rather than pushing your own agenda.  Using open questions and language that mirrors the client’s own terminology enables the client to reflect consciously on the way their perspective is framing their reality.

I’d love to hear about your experiences of the therapeutic voice

Wishing you the wonderful heartfelt sharing of your healing voice in the world

Tips to help you and your clients communicate

* Listen - invite and make space for silence and listening in the session
* Intention - set a clear intent before your session and invite your client to do this too.
* Breathing - practice breathing deeply from the belly, before, during and after the session and invite your client to do so.
* Ground Yourself in the way that is right for you - eg breathing through the soles of your feet, stamping your feet, taking time in Nature.
* Sound AH - this is the sound of the Heart- singing a warm AH from the centre of the chest opens empathic communication.

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