Reichian Psychotherapy

Reichian Psychotherapy


Wilhelm Reich believed that as humans we have the capacity to experience life to the fullest after we have broken our walls and emotional armor down. Reichian Therapy is also known as Orgone Therapy, which has gained popularity in counseling within the last few decades. This treatment takes a closer look at the attitudes that we possess and ways that humans isolate themselves from others because of traumatic experiences. Therapy consists of analyzing these patients, breaking down their defenses and encouraging them to lead a life that is more expressive and interactive. After the counselor has assessed the patient they will study the behavioral interaction and mode of defense. Overall, this is a holistic and psychoanalytic method to integrate assessment and physical bodywork into one therapy.

Goals of Reichian Therapy

The main focus of Reichian Therapy is fixing how the patient interacts with others and how some defenses are preventing them from living a fulfilling life. Treatment is for the purpose of creating a trusting relationship with the client and encouraging them to engage with others to find opportunity and progress forward. Being that it also uses traditional psychoanalytic methods to help the client find closure it is essential to build trust and let the individual know that the therapist is there to help them grow and gain from counseling sessions. The goal of Reichian Therapy is to relieve the stress inherent within the patient and teach them self-acceptance in sexuality and bodywork. This promotes a full healing treatment which improves the client's breathing, emotions, wounds, acceptance of the physical self, communication, wellbeing and power.

When is Reichian Therapy Used?

As a form of body-centered psychotherapy, the patients who are fit for treatment deal with physical and emotional blockages that prevent them from feeling comfortable. The emotions that they have may be stored in certain areas of their body and Reichian Therapy is used when individuals must surrender these emotions so that they can begin experiencing their 'self.' Those who benefit from treatment have suffered from tension in their emotions which has led to physical constraint. When the energy is released from the body it is known as the flow of life force which then helps them experience healthy somatic consciousness. The individual who is blocking this pain is also preventing pleasure from coming into their lives. When fear is blocked, so is trust. This patient will learn how to regain sensations and feelings in both their emotional and physical being.

How Reichian Therapy Works

Reichian Therapy works and caters to the client's personal history. The counselor will begin by getting in touch with how the client has developed and how emotions may have prevented them from finding fulfillment. Once the counselor has identified what feelings are being blocked they will make it a point to show the client why they are unable to express these and find wholesome energy. The therapist will begin to work with the patient by bringing awareness into the innate connection between their body and emotions.

The process uses self awareness and insight as well as physical release to increase the energy flow within the client. The therapist will create a relationship with them before using skilled dialog to illustrate what is happening between their body and mind. They will then look at the defense mechanisms in the patient's body which is causing inadequacy. Sessions will consist of massage and deep tissue intervention. Through bio-psychotherapy methods the counselor will restore healthy breathing to the client and may conduct a dream analysis. If the treatment has been performed successfully the individual will feel relief from emotional problems such as depression and anxiety. They will no longer feel as if they are in "panic mode." The way that they eat and sleep will improve and physical symptoms will be reduced, such as digestive problems or sexual dysfunction. Conclusively the destructive patterns that were holding the patient back have now been eliminated.

Body psychotherapy is incorporated into Reichian Therapy because it is considered a combination approach in treating psychological conflict. The patients will recover their physical boundaries when the energy has been released. This is the most important aspect of trust in one's self and others again after a traumatic experience has taken place. After the patient is aware cognitively and physically they will find inspiration within themselves again because the fear of getting hurt has been eliminated. When therapy is applied toward both the body and mind it allows the mental and physical health to improve the patient's spiritual wellbeing.


Contemporary reichian therapy. (n.d.). Retrieved from

Reichian therapy (orgonomic therapy). (n.d.). Retrieved from 

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