Lifespan Integration is a gentle, body-based therapeutic method which heals without re-traumatizing. In 2003, Peggy Pace published the first edition of her book,Lifespan Integration: Connecting Ego States through Time. In her book Pace describes the new therapeutic method which she developed through her work with her clients. Pace originally designed Lifespan Integration therapy for adult survivors of childhood abuse or neglect. She soon found that LI therapy facilitates rapid healing in people of all ages, and is effective with a wide range of therapeutic issues. Since 2004, Pace has been training therapists throughout the US and Western Europe. At the present time (2015), more than 2000 therapists worldwide have been trained in Lifespan Integration.
Lifespan Integration relies on the innate ability of the body-mind to heal itself. LI is body-based, and combines active imagination, the juxtaposition of ego states in time, and a visual time line of memories to facilitate neural integration and rapid healing. During the integrating phase of the protocol, the client ‘views’ a memory image for each year of his or her life. The Lifespan Integration technique causes memories to surface spontaneously, and because of how memories are held neurologically, each memory which surfaces is related to the emotional theme or issue being targeted. The resulting panoramic view of the client’s life gives the client new insights about lifelong patterns resultant from the past trauma.
Lifespan Integration is also very effective in the healing of various attachment disorders. This is accomplished through imaginally ‘re-writing’ and ‘re-living’ the early conditions, and integrating the new (positive) feeling states which are generated in the client-therapist dyad.
The success of this ‘re-wiring’ depends on the internal coherence of the administering therapist in the same way that the attachment outcome of an infant depends on the mother’s ability to attune to her child and to self-regulate.
After LI therapy, people find themselves spontaneously reacting to current stressors in more age appropriate ways. Clients who begin LI therapy with memory gaps are eventually able to connect the pieces of their lives into a coherent whole. Clients who have completed Lifespan Integration therapy report that they feel better about life, are more self-accepting, and are better able to enjoy their intimate relationships.