Alea Kent has spent nearly 30 years of her life working as a professional therapist and coach in both the private and nonprofit sectors . She has provided support, guidance, and counseling to many hundreds of individuals who have experienced crisis, trauma, and life passages. She has supported them in the process of healing and finding renewed joy in their lives. Over the years, Alea’s work has evolved to include Energy/Muscle Testing, EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique), Emotion Code, Entity Releasement, and Past Life Regression, and Soul Communication.
Alea loves to support her clients in setting and achieving new goals, and finding expanded horizons that bring both joy and healing into their lives. She strives to maintain a clear vision for all those she works with, and believes achieving deeper levels of healing does not necessarily need to be long or painful, and can be done with grace and balance. We spoke with Alea to learn more about her unique body of work and to discuss some of the experiences she has been directly involved with.
Alea, thank you for speaking with us today. To begin with can you give us a little bit of history? How did you come to your work helping to support individuals on their journey towards healing?
What an interesting opportunity to look back and reflect on how it call came together! In my 20’s I was introduced to Re-evaluation Counseling, a peer counseling group, and spent years working on my own issues as well as with others on their issues. I loved it! Eventually I was asked to do volunteer work on the very first model Family Sex Abuse Program in Marion County, Oregon. I worked with families in which incest had occurred with children, spouses and offenders. Talk about being thrown into the fire! Yet I seemed to thrive and my therapeutic creativity flourished in that rather odd setting. It was during that time I realized I loved watching people change and grow, and decided I wanted to do this professionally. So I got my Masters Degree in counseling in 1983.
After getting my degree, I ended up being the “go to” person in Marion County for sex abuse treatment. As I became immersed in this work, I began exploring different modalities to provide alternatives to standard therapeutic treatment. Over the span of my career, I have taken a diverse variety of professional trainings in different modalities. I continued with the ones that were the most effective and helpful to those who were working with me, and that fit with my own beliefs and styles.
Then earlier this year, I was drawn to get my coaching credential and become certified. It turned out to be a good move although at the time, I had no idea how it would serve me. I like the basic tenet of coaching: people who are emotionally healthy and stuck don’t need therapy; they need help with a vision and tools to get there. In my private work, coaching is all I do now.
You have specialized in assisting families and children who have experienced crisis and trauma such as physical, sexual, mental abuse. How have you learned to function in such challenging situations?
I believe a lot of my ability to function with such extreme trauma has much to do with my spiritual path which considers events in a person’s life as a means for the refinement of Soul. This helps me keep an all important bigger picture perspective. In addition, I realize I am not the one that heals, that the person in front of me has to want to heal, and that healing occurs in the presence of Spirit. I am the one who can help them find that place of stillness and offer tools for them to heal.
A number of the people I have seen in my agency position have been mandated to counseling and have anger about being there. When they come to understand I am on their side, then we can begin the work they want to do. The same goes for all the people I work with. When they understand that they are in charge of their healing and I am a resource for them, they can begin to create a wonderful journey for themselves.
What are some of the patterns you first began to see in people when they were moving into a healing process? How do people know they are in a state of healing?
When people are moving into a healing/change process they usually notice an emotional discomfort, a sense that things are just not quite right. They may become more emotional, such as being more easily angered, sad or irritated. They are not the person they were. This often indicates the change process has already started and healing will naturally occur if you allow yourself to surrender to it.
That in and of itself doesn’t mean that one should rush to a therapist or a coach. But the problem for many people is their resistance to the change. It is most often the resistance that is causing the pain, anger, frustration and sense that things aren’t right. If you can tell yourself that you are in a state of change and get curious about where it will lead you, then you can relax and appreciate yourself and the process. Then things can go more smoothly as you move through the change.
What can often happen is anger and criticism directed at self or others creates the feeling of disorientation and discontent that gets deeper an deeper as you engage in self blame and blaming others. At some point the hole feels so big you can’t tell which direction is up and how to get out. That is when a therapist or coach can be helpful.
An important thing to remember, is if someone in a family or relationship is changing and healing, others are either accepting or resisting that change. If they are resisting the change, it can make it more challenging for the one doing the changing. A therapist or coach can be a valuable resource in this instance as well.
When people have begun the healing process, there is a feeling of hope and excitement. The problems may not have all been solved, but a new sense of direction, optimism, and sweet sense of joy begins to emerge.
Over time how have your own reflections on the individual healing process evolved or changed?
Initially, I believed if people had moved out of “crisis mode” and were feeling more confident, then they were ready to leave therapy. Over time, I have come to realize that for deeper healing to occur, it must take place on a number of levels. Emotionally, the issue will not be so present or triggering. Spiritually, there will be more of a connection with the Divine, an inner peace, and a deeper trust in one’s self. Physically, the body is the storehouse for all the trauma we have experienced even if you might consider it minor. Most of the modalities I now use are great for releasing those stored traumas in all the bodies.
How has this evolution and understanding of the work you are in helped to lead you towards working with some of the techniques you utilize today?
In my initial training, we were taught to just help clients slog through pain. It wasn’t until the later 80’s when new modalities emerged that questioned the old beliefs that one had to be in therapy long periods of time (the old psychoanalytical model). At the same time people were beginning to see the tie between the body and the mind. My work with adult survivors clearly proved that to me, as have long term studies linking childhood traumas with greater illness and reduced mortality. EFT and Emotion Code specifically address that tie.
What can you tell us about Energy Muscle Testing and how it is utilized in your practice?
I first learned muscle testing in 1975 and have been amazed at what the body is willing to tell us about ourselves if know how to ask it. Personally, I use it to test all my supplements and foods. I also use it to test what to take for various health issues, such as a cold. I even use it to test body care products, clothes, and bedding.
Sometimes people prefer to have me muscle test them, but I also lead workshops to teach people how to muscle test themselves and others. I also will be teaching an advanced muscle testing class when there are enough people ready to take it. These classes are fun. People bring the items they want to be tested on as they master the many ways to test. What a remarkable tool this is to be able to communicate with your own body!
What about the Emotion Code work you do?
Emotion Code, which relies heavily on muscle testing, identifies and releases blocked emotions from the body so you can be who you really are meant to be. Blocked emotions can cause a myriad of discomforts, and can keep you from love, moving forward in life, success, better health, etc. Emotions are energy, and releasing them with Emotion Code simply involves running a magnet down the spine. I have done Emotion Code by proxy and used it with successfully on animals.
Emotion Code can be used for something as simple as releasing food sensitivities. But it is even more profound when it comes to releasing extreme traumas somebody may have experienced.
Imagine having been sexually abused and in emotional pain for years, and by simply using a magnet the blocked emotions are released. What’s unique, as opposed to traditional counseling, is there is no need to relate traumatic details and re-experience the pain. I have worked with people that have had long standing pain released. Others have been able to clear up relationships after a session. It can be used on issues like fear of death, anxiety, money problems, etc.
Heart Wall work is a deeper aspect of Emotion Code. There is remarkable evidence the heart itself holds memories and feelings. Many heart transplant recipients have even reported experiencing certain habits and emotions of their organ donors. At times of trauma, the heart wall serves a useful purpose by acting like a sort of bomb shelter for the heart. But after the trauma is over, this shelter is no longer needed. However, it rarely goes away on its own. The Heart Wall work is very powerful in that it releases blocked emotions, and helps people come home to themselves.
How about EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique)?
I actually combine Emotion Code and EFT in a very natural way that works especially well, as they really compliment each other. EFT uses acupuncture points to release emotional and physical issues, and is the ultimate in do it yourself therapy. It is easy to learn and can be used for virtually any issue you have.
Tapping on the points with your fingers while repeating a reminder phrase is all it takes. EFT can be used by adults and children. Parents can even do it for their kids. If you have a young one in the midst of a meltdown, tapping on yourself as a proxy for your child works well.
I have successfully worked with people with a wide variety of emotional and physical issues, including headache pain, dental pain, allergies, difficulty and pain with walking, fear of flying, self esteem issues, guilt, grief, and more. I would love to work on a longer term basis with someone with weight issues to see what we can achieve.
I teach day long Level 1 and Level 2 classes as well as provide individual EFT sessions. I also offer an EFT Borrowing Benefits class one evening a month, which delves into the benefits of tapping cooperatively. Some people need the motivation of a group or a coach, finding it hard to keep up the tapping long enough to get results. I make it fun and silly when we tap which seems to release issues much more quickly.
You also work with Past Life Regression and Soul Communication. How did you come to this and what types of benefits are achieved when clients utilize these techniques?
After I got my masters degree in counseling, I ran across a book about past life therapy and was blown away. I had believed in past lives for years and as a therapist it felt like such a natural fit. I ended up taking a long term training from an international organization for past life therapists. I received training from the best in the field, which included hours of past life therapy for ourselves. I found it to be so life enriching. Knowing I had been a wharf whore, a sainted nun, an adulterous wheelwright, a battered wife blamed for my abuse, aristocrat, a regretful soldier and more all have contributed to make me who I am today. Accepting the hard lives I have had is an amazing process that serves me in accepting people for who they are and have been. I feel so rich from knowing all this about myself. It also gives me the knowing this life is but a stream and Soul is the connector.
Soul Communication is a process that goes inward like past life regression, but is not looking for a past life. Sometimes Soul needs to communicate or has work to do that needs witnessing. I worked with a teen male who had been physically, emotionally and sexually abused by his step father and had extreme anger. He had gotten better at controlling his anger, but it still burned within him. After we did some Soul Communication work, his chronic anger dissipated, never to return.
I’ve discovered that Soul Communication often occurs spontaneously during the course of my work. People have been able to come to an understanding and acceptance about themselves, release old beliefs, move forward in their lives, find a place of peace to go to, and heal from old wounds. In this work there is a deep sense of connection with the infinite. Every past life regression and Soul Connection session feels so powerful and reaffirming.
Alea, why it’s so difficult to try to make changes without the help of an outside attention like yourself?
We have learned to live our lives in ways that are easy and make sense to us. When Spirit is wanting us to change, we are challenged because our easy life is now a rut, and is deep enough that we can’t see over the side. Having another person who can throw us a rope that helps us climb out of that rut, and can describe a new landscape and convey that beauty to us, is an invaluable ally.
Each new journey of change takes us into new territory. We had mastered the old territory and developed tools, but each new territory requires new tools, new views and a willingness to use new eyes to look at the new landscape and the person we are becoming. Most of us are programmed to resist change. Having an ally makes the journey easier.
Often times when we might be experiencing change or transition it is difficult to maintain a clear vision of what we truly want. How do you work with clients in supporting their highest and best?
I love sharing with clients the vision I see about them. A number of years a go, I worked with a young Native American teenager who came from a family with severe challenges and all the children were hurting, as well as the parents. After working with her for some time, I was shown a vision of her as a shaman for her people if she would do the healing work she was so mightily resisting. I knew she had the choice to do healing work and become the shaman, but I also knew she might not make that choice. This story is still unfinished.
I am easily able to see people as the beautiful lotus, growing out of a muddy pond. Their willingness to step on the journey of healing and change is an act of courage and I feel it is a great privilege to work with such courageous people.
Taking healing into our own hands is a central point of your work. Can you please tell us more about this philosophy and vision with your work?
I mean this in two ways. I like to empower people to use the techniques like EFT, Emotion Code and muscle testing on a regular basis on their own, which is why I offer the groups. I am not yet certified to teach Emotion Code as a workshop, but can teach this tool one on one.
When people want to meet with me for individual sessions, it’s more empowering when they can identify what’s going on, articulate where they want to be, and are open to suggestions on how best to get there. Then I can be facilitator, ally and witness. One thing that does not work, is if people look to me as some kind of guru or savior, which would entail shifting personal responsibility to me. Giving your power to someone else doesn’t help the change process.
Alea, you are part of a group of healers who have started the new Talent Healing Arts Center. Can you tell us about the inspiration behind opening this new healing space?
The inspiration came in the form of a guide telling Chris she needed to open a healing center in Talent. She was told where it should be located and about how much should be paid in rent. After her initial resistence she found the location where she had been told to look, and the rent was also what she had been told. She spread the word and got a group of healers willing to work together. There has been some coming and going among practitioners, but a strong core is forming.
I am so clear the Healing Arts Center, which offers a wide variety of energy work, will become an important, well loved and respected resource in the Valley in the near future. We anticipate applying for grants to work with under served populations in addition to the work we are already doing. We are growing up in all ways and it is an exciting time for all of us at the Center.
We feel we offer a lot to the community, which includes healing evenings twice a month. For a $5-10 donation, one can receive two 15-20 minute healing sessions with any of the practitioners. We also have, by donation, pranic healing, Reiki clinics and Open Heart Meditations. Besides the services I offer, our staff currently includes a polarity therapist, aroma therapist, tarot reader, Bach Flower practitioner, Reiki Masters, Pranic Healer. We offer workshops, classes and individual sessions and are also planning to invite guest speakers. It is our intention to make the Healing Arts Center of Talent a truly incredible resource.
Alea, when we spoke on the phone I was able to hear in both your voice and your words that you really care about your clients. What is this experience like for you of playing the role as a healer and assisting people on their way towards more joyful horizons?
Working with people as they choose to make changes in their lives is my greatest joy. I can’t image anything else I could do being so fulfilling. In some ways I feel this is how I do my peace work. Helping one person at a time find peace brings peace to those around them, which then spreads like an energetic ripple out to the world. What a joy!
Finally, do you have any last thoughts or comments you would like to share with our readers today or as we go into the new year?
There is a quote by Goethe that I love: As soon as you trust yourself, you will know how to live. So many people don’t really trust themselves much less have the tools to live a fulfilling life. Learning to trust yourself is a great gift you give yourself, your friends, family, and the world.
Shields, I also want to thank you for the gift you have brought to our community, your commitment to your vision and for simply being you. You are a blessing!
Alea Kent MS BCC
541-552-0333 | Movinggrace.com