Philosophy and Approach

Keeley Rankin Philosophy and Approach

Philosophy and Approach

Many people view sex as an organic, spur-of-the moment experience. I prefer to think of sex as a musical composition, and our bodies as the instruments for creating that special music.

Just like a flute or piano, your body requires constant practice and maintenance to perform at its best. It requires stepping out of your comfort zone and learning new techniques to better understand your inner music, and eventually make beautiful music with others. In short, having and sustaining a satisfying sex life isn’t just about one simple approach or technique.

I believe in using a holistic approach that combines talk therapy, body-based exercises, and mindful touch. From my experience with clients, traditional talk therapy on its own limits progress in the realm of sex, erotic energy, and desire. For true and lasting pleasure, you’ll need to use your entire body and open yourself to all the erotic possibilities of what it can feel and give.

In our sessions, I’ll be guiding you through the process of exploring your body, as well as your mind, to quickly uncover what’s holding you back from the passionate experiences you want.

We’ll also work through the struggles that arise when our bodies become out of tune. There are many variables that can cause us to disconnect from our bodies and our erotic energy: difficult relationships, societal and cultural expectations, unprocessed childhood wounds, and daily life stresses and distractions. 

Jan Chozen Bays quote

I’ll help you tackle these problems through a series of practical exercises and mindful techniques, thereby helping you shift the old patterns that hold you back from sexual fulfillment. Our ultimate goal is to find your own sensuality, wisdom, confidence, creativity, playfulness, inspiration and freedom.

In addition to my education and training, I draw on the wisdom of my mentors, major thinkers on relationships and sexuality, and my biggest teachers of all — my clients.


Professional Accreditations 

Academic Degree

  • Master in Counseling Psychology with a Focus in Marriage and Family Therapy and an Emphasis in Holistic Studies. John F. Kennedy University, 2013
  • Masters Thesis: Surrogate Partner Therapy
  • BA in Psychology. University of California, Irvine. 2008

Training

  • Sessions with Esther Perel. Online community forum for therapist, coaches and educators. Esther Perel, 2016 – present
  • Re- Creation of The Self  (R-CS) Advanced Training. Meta 2018-2019
  • The Healing Power of Unconditional Presence; Integrating Spiritual, Psychological and Embodiment Work. Ongoing Group; John Welwood, PhD., 2012 – 2019
  • Re- Creation of The Self Training. Hakomi Institute of California, 2018
  • Blueprint Breakthrough Course. Miss Jaiya. 2018
  • Embodied Love and Lovemaking: A Full-Spectrum Neurobiological-Gestalt (FSG)Training In Embodied Relational Sex Therapy. Stella Resnick, 2018
  • The Hakomi Character Map. Hakomi Institute of California, 2017
  • Teacher’s Assistant. Hakomi – Mindful Somatic Psychotherapy;  California Institute of Integral Studies, 2017
  • Somatica Professional Couples Training. Somatica® Institute, 2016
  • Attending to Attachment; Mindfulness Based Approaches to Healing Adult Attachment. Hakomi Institute of California, 2016
  • Hakomi Professional Training. Hakomi Institute of California, 2014
  • Certified Somatica Practitioner. Somatica® Institute, 2013
  • Somatica Professional Training. Somatica® Institute, 2013
  • Certified Queer Conscious Educator. John F. Kennedy University, 2012
  • Certified Sexological Bodyworker. Institute for Advanced Study of Human Sexuality, 2010

As you can see, I rely on a variety of models to address the physical, psychological, sexual, and emotional needs of my clients. My strong commitment to continuing education and keeping an open mind to new therapeutic techniques gives me a wide array of skills to draw from when I’m working with a client.

I prefer to work with clients in whatever modality serves them best. Some of the most affective modalities are quit fringe. Therefore, I have chosen not to become a licensed psychotherapist.


The two main models I draw from are Hakomi Therapy and John Welwood

John Welwood

John’s work is largely experiential, drawing on embodiment exercises that are aimed at cultivating embodied presence and awareness. In this subtle body approach to self-love, we will open up your body to the flow of love, along with letting go of the mental and emotional baggage blocking this flow.

Since 2012, I have had the honor and pleasure of assisting John Welwood in his ongoing meditation group, The Healing Power of Unconditional Presence. I was first fascinated with John’s work because of his very influential book on romantic love, Perfect Love, Imperfect Relationships: Healing the Wound of the Heart. Winner of the prestigious Books for a Better Life Award, along with other honored authors, including Jimmy Carter, Deepak Chopra, and His Holiness the Dalai Lama.

In 2019, John passed away. Losing a beloved mentor impacted me on a deeper level than words can express. Feeling the loss has led me toward a deeper desire to understand John’s trainings and reach more deeply into myself. While part of my work with John is a personal journey, there is not part of his work that does not inform my sessions with a client.

John Welwood quote

The great challenge in our busy world is to stay connected with ourselves—with our bodily experiences, our living wisdom, our sensitivity and our depth. Through my training with John, I will help you address these challenges by developing greater in your body, speech and mind. The result is a better connection with yourself, your awareness, and your physical experiences in a fully embodied way.

John Welwood, Ph.D., is a clinical psychologist and psychotherapist, an editor of The Journal of Transpersonal Psychology, and teacher whose innovative approach integrates psychological, meditative, and embodiment work. In the 1980’s, John Welwood emerged as a major figure in the field of psychology, publishing more than fifty articles and nine books on relationships, psychotherapy, consciousness, and personal change. His best-seller, Journey of the Heart was the first book to lay out the path of conscious relationships and is widely regarded as one of the most profound books on intimate relationships.

In my sex therapy sessions, I focus on John’s simple wisdom and incredibly rich view of what is truly possible in intimate relationships, how we get stuck, and how to make the changes that lead to fulfillment and meaning. John has deepened my understanding of the wounds of the heart, the needs and intricacies of intimate relationships and how to live with the ambiguities of the human life and psyche.

To learn more about John Welwood, please visit his website at: www.johnwelwood.com


Hakomi Therapy

I am trained in the methods of Hakomi Therapy techniques which are exceptionally effective tools for following sensations, feelings, and bodily tensions to the unconscious beliefs and attitudes that limit our responses and drive our behavior.

When applying these techniques to our sexuality, we can uncover core beliefs about ourselves and the world around us. As a result, we can unlock the places within us that have been previously unreachable, and allow for the freedom and openness that we need to have incredible sex lives.

Hakomi Therapy is a Mindfulness-Centered Somatic Psychotherapy method based on principles of Mindfulness, Nonviolence, Unity, Organicity and Mind-Body Integration. For the last 30 years, Hakomi has been leading the field in experiential, body-centered, somatic psychotherapy.

A few key assumptions of Hakomi Therapy is based on:

  • As we develop from infancy to childhood to adulthood, we organize our experiences by applying meaning to them, to the world, and to ourselves;
  • These organizational decisions come to operate as unconscious “core beliefs” about the world and our place in it which govern how we think, feel, develop, act, respond, and create;
  • These core beliefs limit our ability to function spontaneously and to live effectively through systematic, characterological habits which we originally created to avoid feeling a lack of safety, affection, attention, or approval; and
  • The purpose of therapy is to become fully human, alive, spontaneous, open-hearted and caring, with the ability to be equally effective acting in interdependence with the world or autonomously.

Under the Hakomi umbrella, I have participated in the training: Attending to Attachment; Mindfulness Based Approaches to Healing Adult Attachment and The Hakomi Character Map. I also am an assistant teacher for Intro to Hakomi at CIIS.

The framework of Hakomi translates into concrete clinical skills and thoughtfully designed interventions and experientials that will allow us to understand why you are blocked. With that understanding, we can help you attain the freedom and openness that is crucial for a passionate and fulfilling sex life.


Other modalities I draw from:

+ Re- Creation of The Self, often referred to as R-CS was created by John Eisman. R-CS is both a map for people to understand and pursue their potential, and also a unique and highly effective approach to therapeutic change. R-CS is essentially a comprehensive map of the self. With clients, having this direct approach to being human can make tolerating the shame, disappointments and difficulties of being human more possible.

When we bring this model into the realm of sexuality, it helps people step more fully into their whole sexual selves and live from a more confident awareness of what they want and need.

+ I’m a Certified Somatica® Practitioner. Somatica® emphasises bringing the relationship directly into the room. Using these tools with couples when appropriate can help lovers who have been stuck for years move into desire. This specialized training in the subtleties of erotic connections and deep understanding of the differences between sex and intimacy can also help individuals. 

Bringing the relationship directly into the room can help boost confidence and sexual expression, while getting to the root of your struggles in a practical way.

+ While Miss Jaiya’s training was one of the most non-traditional trainings I have taken, I draw from the Blueprint Breakthrough Course often with clients. Jaiya’s sexual blueprint ideas is similar to the 5 Love Languages – but for sex. By learning what “type” you are, it’s easy to understand who you are are erotically, and in turn, become a better lover to others.