Embodying the Internal Family, also known as Somatic IFS, is a branch of the Internal Family Systems (IFS) Model. IFS is a psychotherapeutic model that normalizes multiplicity of the mind and views each person as having a Self that the therapist helps to uncover so that it can fully lead the system of parts, or subpersonalities.
IFS holds that all parts, regardless of how they currently manifest, hold positive intent and can be helped to contribute their wisdom and gifts to the person’s system. Somatic IFS explores the embodiment of the internal family with the goal of restoring the client’s Self to leadership and allowing parts that express through the body to come into relationship and alignment with the client’s Self.
Susan McConnell, senior trainer for the IFS Institute, has taught IFS in the U.S. and internationally since 1997. She has developed Embodying the Internal Family out of her passion for integrating the body and nonverbal processes with psychotherapy. Somatic IFS is a synthesis of Susan’s forty years of study, teaching, and clinical practice with bodywork, psychotherapy, and spiritual practices.
Susan’s new book is now available, published by North Atlantic Books!
Somatic Internal Family Systems: Awareness, Breath, Resonance, Movement and Touch in Practice introduces a new therapeutic modality that blends principles of somatic therapy--like movement, touch, and breathwork--with the traditional tools of the Internal Family Systems framework. Broadening the benefits and applications of the IFS model, author Susan McConnell introduces 5 core practices with clinical applications that include the treatment of depression, trauma, anxiety, eating disorders, chronic illness, and attachment disorders."
See Susan’s chapter on Somatic IFS in a new book published by Kingsley:
“The Family Within: An IFS Journey” in Inner Dialogue in Daily Life:
Contemporary Approaches to Personal and Professional Development in Psychotherapy,
edited by Charles Eigen. London & Philadelphia: Kingsley, 2014