We had the good fortune of connecting with Steffany Butts-Boucher and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Steffany, is there something you can share with us that those outside of the industry might not be aware of?
When people hear the words sound healing, sound baths, sound practitioners, they often do not hear about the technical details or the science behind the practice, but in fact, the sounds that we cohabitate with have an impact on how we feel. Sympathetic resonance occurs when vibration from one object causes another nearby object to vibrate. When you listen to music, your whole body connects with sound at the neural level. Sound healing is a deeply relaxing method to manage stress, clear energetic blocks, and balance your energy. A Certified Sound Practitioner is trained to utilize specific frequencies for your individual needs and alignment. To create an example of sound experience on your own: simply listen to music on a walk, at work, or while laying down comfortably at home. Our energy level aligns with the pace and frequency of the music we listen to so pay close attention to the correlation between what you need, what you are listening to, and how you are feeling. Theta-wave music resonates between four to eight frequencies or waves per second. It is excellent for winding down as it quiets your energy level bringing you to a deep calm dreamy state, perfect prior to bedtime. There are many informative resources to learn more about the benefits of music on the body and mind: Musicophilia by Oliver Sacks and This is Your Brain on Music by Daniel J. Levitin are two of my favorites. The name of my business Echo Healing Arts Studio connects to my love of the science of sound, sympathetic resonance, and to the benefits of the creative process. Growing up, I was constantly working on art and I was also fascinated with how sound could echo, reflect off of a surface and return to us. The music we listen to, and the messages that we tell ourselves play a powerful role in our lives as they can change how we feel in a moment, and they come back to us again and again, they echo. Our messages have an impact on our reality. We can empower ourselves and others through our specific use of language, and through resonating experiences with both art and sound.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
Echo Healing Arts Studio is located in Manitou Springs, Colorado. I am an Artist, Sound Practitioner, and Instructor. At Echo, I focus on activities and resources that bring presence, balance, confidence, and deep relaxation into our lives. This includes wellness modalities such as Sound Sessions, Aromatherapy, Meditation, and classes in both Meditation and Art. My mission is to teach people skill-sets that they can bring into their lives to take charge of their own wellness. I visualized my own business for so many years, down to the details of furniture, aroma, sounds, and colors. The clearest part of the visualization was not how my passions in sound and art would coalesce into practice, it was more focused on an environment where people would feel relaxed, at ease, and comfortable. My teaching experience in art began at Parsons School of Design, where I also attended grad school and my practice in meditation began when I was living in NYC. I was living in New York City and began experiencing symptoms of PTSD related to 9-11. Meditation helped me develop presence and was a source of calm for me in my life. When I moved to Colorado, I began experiencing these symptoms again and started EMDR therapy, which for me had incredible results. EMDR and meditation helped me regain my focus. I wanted to be able to help others develop this same focus and calm in their lives and because of my love of music, my therapist recommended I try a sound session. I felt an immediate connection during this session, fell in love with the practice, and began studying to be a sound practitioner. I made the decision to open my business in June 2020, during covid. While covid has been a very challenging factor, I have always believed that regret weighs heavier than risk. So, when I was able to return to my visualization, and I opened Echo with the intention to grow my business from the roots of sound and art.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
My favorite places in Green Mountain Falls, Colorado Springs and Manitou Springs that I recommend are… I love Green Mountain Falls: A nice hike up to the waterfall and then to The Pantry for breakfast, and a walk around the pond. Manitou: the Penny Arcade, a tour of the Mineral Springs with some history of Manitou, a walk by Rocky’s studio, Commonwheel Artists Co-op, the Manitou Art Center, K8 Orr’s Jibwa Studio, and then off to Swirl – or! – Adam’s Mountain Cafe for Lunch. Colorado Springs: Kreuser Gallery is a must, UCCS: Star Kempf’s sculptures, a private tour of friends art studios, a drive on Old Stage Coach Road, an evening soak at a hot springs, then Dos Santo’s -or!- Fat Sully’s for dinner.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I feel that my progress in life is due to the accumulation of all of my experiences with every person that I have engaged with. My parents have played the most integral role in my life through their guidance and teaching me the importance of art and music. My husband Curtis Boucher for his incredible songwriting, music, his knowledge of sound, deep well of compassion, and his continual support. Rachel Plunkett-Fowler, of the non-profit Recover Simply for her inspiring presence, teaching collaborations, and beautiful light! My dear friend Patricia Mulkey for believing in me and encouraging me to always move forward. And for my beloved friends Erin Elizabeth, Sarah Raban, Deborah Schoen, Kelly Laurie, Jodie Bliss, Sarah Stockfeld, Robyn Peterson, Frances Gomeztagle, Marisa Madge, Conor Bourgal, Pat Peret & David Wild, for inspiration, collaboration, sharing their knowledge, humor, and their compassionate leadership.