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The Narcissistic Abuse Recovery Centre: bringing the community together to transform lives

Continuing our Shop Front and Personal series, this week we had the honour of speaking with Kate Munden from the Narcissistic Abuse Recovery Centre. It was fascinating to learn about her experiences and how she uses her knowledge to help clients process their emotions, thoughts and chronic patterns of fear and pain.

Welcome, Kate. Tell us a bit about how your business has evolved, and how you came to settle in Cranbrook.

 Prior to Cranbrook, I lived in London for 25 years. I still have a practice there, and I love only being an hour away. But I wanted to have a life where I could raise my child in the countryside with great schools around. He recently got into Cranbrook School which is a real achievement.

Please tell us more about your business brands, and what they mean?

Many people come to me under the umbrella of Kate Munden – or Integrative Therapy Solutions – because they resonate with me and my ways of working. “Integrative Therapy Solutions” can apply to a range of problems, and I also teach and train other therapists, so this term highlights the broad range of services I offer.

Meanwhile, the Narcissistic Abuse Recovery Centre focuses on my particular area of expertise. It’s all about looking out for signs of narcissistic abuse or ‘toxic relationships’ in our lives. If we feel small, disregarded, not heard, confused, or constantly thinking it’s all our fault and that whatever we do isn’t right – that can be a sign of narcissistic abuse. It doesn’t have to be a partner; it could be your boss, a friend or family member.

I was in a narcissistically abusive relationship for twelve years and I had no idea what was happening to me. When you discover the truth, it’s an awakening and it has nothing to do with education, class or wealth – it can happen to anyone!

How have you been affected, if at all, by lockdown?

 Lockdown was very interesting for me; I was very busy. Domestic violence shot up during lockdown and although my client base doesn’t generally experience physical violence – it’s usually violence without bruises – lockdown did exacerbate already negative relationships.

I think a lot of people just reflected, turned inward, and realised things weren’t right. When we slow down, what we resist often comes up and we can be forced to deal with unprocessed emotions.

For me, I had to pivot and move everything online. A lot of my work goes beyond talking therapy. I teach a lot of embodiment work by helping people who really struggle to be in their bodies. For traumatised individuals, their body can become a frightening place, so they learn to leave their body, and become lost in their head. A lot of my work is helping guide people back safely to their body and process the emotions they’ve been trying to escape.

I do have a home practice and I’m beginning to see more people in person again this year, but the majority of my work is still online. Thankfully, most of it can be carried out remotely. When I transitioned to online sessions, I thought: “Am I going to be able to do this? Is this actually going to work?!” Fortunately, it was well received. Every Friday evening, I ran a support group where we all came together in a healing way – it was really lovely.

It’s great that you are able to help people. It must be difficult work at times?

Although clients can be upset when they come to me, I don’t find the work difficult because I am very much about empowering people. My focus is to ensure that clients take away what they learn with me to practice themselves going forward. Rather than being stuck in the hamster wheel of “I’m feeling traumatised”, they can move through difficult times and actually transform.

Trauma is anything that overwhelms us. Yes, we need help, but we also need the tools to move through it. So, although the reasons for clients coming to me can be sad, the transformation is fantastic. When you see people really change, it’s wonderful!

As you know, Be Local is all about rewarding local residents with deals and discounts. What does the term ‘support local’ mean to you?

Just as local clients come to me, I also make a conscious effort to support as many local retailers as I can. During lockdown, I shopped at the farm shop, which felt really important to do. What I love about Cranbrook and the surrounding areas is that there are so many fantastic local businesses offering something unique.

Do you have any current special offers or workshops?

I’m currently offering a £20 discount for those who book in a block of six one-hour sessions upfront.

In addition, I’ve created a FREE download: “5 Signs You Are in an Abusive Relationship”.

I also act on behalf of Emotional Freedom Techniques International, the world’s leading professional EFT association. We teach the ethical and professional use of EFT worldwide. As a board member, I’m dedicated to bringing trauma relief to the vulnerable in society, so it’s a big part of my charity work, which is why I’ve created a free online course committed to it. I’m in the process of preparing a free online course which will be relevant to a broad range of people. In fact, anyone looking to practice self-care or Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT), which is one of the techniques I teach, will benefit. Watch this space!

 Thank you, Kate, for your insight. It’s been an eye-opener and we hope to be able to talk you again soon as it seems as though we’ve only touched the surface!

 To arrange a free 30-minute consultation with Kate, please visit her website or email Kate works Monday-Friday, 9am-5pm, and alternate Saturday mornings. You can also follow Kate on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

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