Counseling using Guided Imagery and Music in Vancouver, WA
What is GIM (Guided Imagery and Music- The Bonny Method)?
Guided Imagery and Music (GIM) is a mind-body therapy where the counselor assists the client in exploring issues through carefully selected classical music programs in a relaxed, wakeful dream state.
Why GIM? Music evokes our emotions and can get to the ‘heart of the matter’ within seconds. It’s a very powerful tool for accessing our innermost feelings, memories, and somatic responses. In addition, music naturally engages multiple parts of the brain simultaneously, which assists in reprocessing trauma, depression, anxiety, chronic pain, addictions, grief and loss, relationship stress, or other blocks in a safe state. Music engages our emotions, cognitions, memories, physical responses, and creativity simultaneously—creating a mind-body therapy that is efficient for creating solutions and feeling differently about issues presented. Because the stress/trauma/anxiety response is stored in our Central Nervous System, an effective trauma therapy needs to also reprocess these issues utilizing the midbrain, limbic (emotional) system, and central nervous system/somatic response. This is what music and GIM does, and why it’s so efficient. Traditional ‘talk therapy’ does not typically engage all parts of the brain simultaneously, which is why it may not be as effective/efficient as a trauma therapy like GIM.
Benefits of GIM
Connects the conscious to the unconscious
Stimulates the intuition and the creative potential
Activates our innate capacity for healing and transformation
Provides encouragement to get through difficult emotions and life situations and carries the client through the heights and depths of an experience
Helps to reduce fears and anxieties
Reduces stress and enhances a state of well-being
Allows unresolved issues to surface and helps to remove mental and emotional blocks
“Your music and imagery experiences are reflections of you and are unique to your personal relationships, feelings, and personality. You may have glimpses of transpersonal inspiration which both challenge and nurture your sense of who you are and who you can become. Your creativity may be awakened. You may gain new perspectives on your life issues and may feel empowered to work with them with renewed energy.” -AMI
What to Expect in your Guided Imagery and Music Session
In a GIM session, you and your counselor discuss your current life situation, set goals for your work together, and establish a focus for the session. After following a guided relaxation, you then turn your attention to listening to the selected music, allowing it to become a vehicle for exploring deeper states of consciousness. You verbalize to the counselor the visual images, emotional feelings, sensations in the body, memories, and other awarenesses evoked by the music. The imaginal realm provides a rich milieu for personal insight. Your counselor interacts verbally with you to help you develop and expand your imagery experiences. At the close of the music, your counselor assists your return from the deepened state and reinforces the insights you have gleaned from the exploration. In summary, GIM encourages unresolved issues to surface and helps the client to find new levels of problem solving in a safe, efficient manner.