Curt Ramsey is a Licensed Professional Counselor in Virginia beginning his journey of offering ASMR counseling via in-person visits and live video sessions.
In the prior post (Nov 10, 2020), Curt shared how he learned about ASMR, his earliest memories of ASMR, his investigations into learning about ASMR, the development of his ASMR practice, and his experiences so far with ASMR counseling.
In this update, Curt shares some challenges and successes he has encountered as he continues his journey into ASMR counseling.
From Curt Ramsey,
The last time I wrote, I summarized my intro into the world of ASMR and how I began integrating ASMR into my ongoing therapy practice. I’d love to share more now about my efforts in the past month or so to further this integration–both successes and challenges. Hopefully, my experiences will contribute to our overall understanding of the incredible potential, but also limitations, of ASMR counseling.
First, the limitations. One of the obvious limitations at the moment is the COVID-19 pandemic. ASMR counseling is working well on telehealth, online video sessions, but my ability to practice it in person is severely limited at the moment, as I’m only seeing a few clients in person each week (with all the proper safety precautions, of course).
However, this has been a blessing in disguise, as it’s pushed me to explore using video, the ASMR format most people are familiar with, to do ASMR counseling with my clients. Though I’d love to start practicing ASMR counseling more often in person when possible, doing ASMR video sessions has its upsides, like being able to suggest using headphones and turning up the gain (the audio setting that allows for picking up those crisp, relaxing ASMR sounds).
But back to the limitations!
An obvious limitation as of now is being unable to adequately determine how much the ASMR is responsible for any positive outcomes I’m seeing. Was it the guided imagery or was it the whispers and slight mouth sounds that led to such deep relaxation? Or both? All I have to go by so far are the comments of my clients–and most of those have given much of the credit to whatever ASMR trigger I’m using in the moment.
Now for a few notes on recent successes using ASMR in my practice. I did a whispered guided mindfulness meditation with a particular client and was told it was “magical”, leaving the client with a renewed sense of their own ability to focus.
I’ve also recently used face adjustments and mic scratching as fun, imaginative additions to guided imagery meditations. The mic scratching was quite effective. I asked the client to imagine their problem that involved a lot of frustration and self-judgment as a rough, edgy shape. Then with every mic scratch, they imagined the shape becoming smoothed and smaller until it felt peaceful, self-compassionate, and almost gone. The client was so relaxed by this thought that they nearly fell asleep!
Online video sessions do allow me to cast a broader net, especially when my Youtube channel allows me to reach people in Virginia outside of my own location. However, I’m looking forward to the day when I can practice ASMR counseling more in my office, in-person.
I have a hunch that in-person ASMR has the highest potential to help my clients. As I mentioned, I’ve only seen a few clients in-person recently, but I have had a recent, in-person opportunity to help a stressed-out client relax using whispers in a guided relaxation exercise, which seemed quite effective.
More to come…
Counselor Curt, LLC
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