Moving out of Reactivity with Ketamine-Assisted Psychotherapy

So many times, a client will express great frustration with self. Asking questions like: “Why can’t I control myself?” “Why am I so quick to be angry and lash out?” These clients are telling me they live in a place of reactivity. When things happen unexpectedly or outside of their control, these clients are quick to respond from outside of their conscious awareness. And then they tend to experience a shame spiral around their reactivity and behavior. These clients long for something different, but struggle to change. An intention for Ketamine-Assisted Psychotherapy (KAP) born out of this longing can sound like this: I want to be responsive to people and happenings in my world rather than reactive. Responsiveness implies choice. An activating circumstance occurs, and the client is able to pause and make a choice about how they want to respond. Choice is empowering here—and choice comes in the space provided by the pause. Ketamine has the power to disrupt reactivity and create space experientially for clients to find options of response. And as clients integrate their KAP experiences, new ways of experiencing self in the space of the pause are reinforced. Then, reactivity occurs less frequently as clients flex the muscle of responsiveness. And flexing the muscle is easier with the lingering neurogenesis clients experience after KAP sessions.

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