How can you touch someone with finesse, skill and attunement in a way that is unattached to outcome, listening to both your needs and theirs, following the flow of what wants to happen? This is not a lesson in techniques, but how to be present with yourself and another so that your body can meet theirs harmoniously.
On one level, it's super simple - you just do it.
However, we're complex creatures.
I'll speak for myself...
I want to be attuned to, deeply heard and seen. I want the person touching me to release what they think they know and to actually listen to my body, my energy, my words, my breath, my soul AND theirs. If they are not aware of what's happening for them and they're focused solely on me, something is missing.
What is attunement?
Speak to me, make contact with me in a way that has my body, mind and energy soften and clarify in your presence. When we are attuned, my body trusts your touch the moment you come into contact with me, and where you come into contact with me is not necessarily physical touch first. Here in this moment as you're reading, you are coming in to contact with my words, my thoughts, my energy field. The energy field spans distances and time.
Attunement is finding resonance where your body and mine meet. It's finding harmony between us.
Attunement is how a mother knows exactly what her baby requires, and giving it to them in a way that they can fully receive it. Attunement is not assuming you know what someone else needs based on past experiences, but being present with the being you are with in the moment, who may be different than how they showed up 10 seconds ago.
A guitar will need different tuning in dry and humid conditions. A living human is far more complex than a guitar. They may desire completely different contact now than you gave them 2 days ago, or different than you would like to receive yourself.
HOW do we attune to our partners?
First, know yourself. Become so purely present with yourself in this moment.
As I type this now, I feel tingly in the back of my head, tension in my jaw and teeth, distrust of people who may read this (I have a story that the more strangers know about me, the more they'll take advantage of me, in a way that takes and doesn't give), awareness of sounds around me - the dryer running, neighbors upstairs - my sleepy eyes, the ticking clock, the habit of my energy coming forward, then recalibrating and finding where my energy wants to be - naturally sinking in to my belly as I allow it.
What's the point of noticing and naming all of this? Why does any of this matter?
Because as I write, as I notice everything in my experience, I soften, settle, and relax. My energy expands. The pressure in my head releases.
How does it relate to attunement to a partner?
If I'm holding tension, or on edge, or not present and aware in my body, then some part of the person I'm coming in to contact with is aware of that, whether they are conscious of it or not. Their body, or their energy, or their subconscious knows. And the better that I can attune to myself, to become aware of my present state and to give myself what I need, I will be better equipped to make contact with another being in a way that is clear and mutually supportive in a clean, unattached way. If I were disregulated and not aware of it, not owning it, and then offering supportive contact to someone, I may actually be receiving more benefit by touching them than they are receiving from me. I may actually be subconsciously taking. This can create an energy imbalance - an unconscious way to pull energy. The more that I as a support person am aware of my experience, and am grounded, centered, and owning my experience, the more I can offer neutral, attuned, supportive contact.
From a place of self-awareness and finding right relationship with another person - that is, what physically and energetically feels clear and easeful between the two of you - then touch can come more naturally. Techniques can be taught, but they aren't the first skill.
Reach out to me if you'd like some guidance on how to touch, and how to attune to yourself and another. Sessions are available in person in Asheville, NC, Boulder, CO and online.
I'm Erin Casey, and I touch people. With my hands, with my presence, with contact - physical and energetic. With my art, with my awareness, kindness, ferocity, grace, humor, humility, humanness. I create Source-guided art: intuitive, abstract, bringing the unseen to light. I follow the energy, follow what feels right. Sometimes it's messy and awkward, but often it's beautiful and moving.
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