A long public holiday is on the horizon… Yes, Easter is almost upon us. A chance to catch up with family and friends, a time to relax, go for long walks, enjoy a delicious spring roast and often the time to sit and eat lots of chocolate, egg shaped chocolate, that is.
Anyone who has seen The Speakmans will get that they are great at what they do. They are fab on TV too but are they as good as they seem?
Well, I recently attended an event of theirs in Elstree, Hertfordshire; ‘How to be happy in 2017’. I was basically going along as a nosey therapist to see what they do, how they do it, see how their techniques differ from mine and learn some new tips. (It’s always good to keep learning.) The event was aimed at the general public, those who have something they want to change. It’s not aimed at therapists though they were fully aware that they are always some at their seminars.
Nik and Eva Speakman were so lovely and friendly to everyone, so very humble and genuine towards each and every person they spoke to. They took time during the day, that ran from 9 until 5.30, at every break to talk to the attendees. There were people queuing, in any free time, for their autographs, photos and to have their help with their issue and Nik and Eva took their time to be there for everyone. Even at the end they were still there helping attendees. We squeezed a photo in, here’s a colleague, hypnotherapist Heather Bond from Potters Bar, with Nik, Eva and me.
I am guessing they were bushed by the end but you would never have thought it. They maintained their glamour and energetic enthusiasm throughout. Even this I found inspiring. Bring a therapist is tiring and intense at times, and running the slick event they put on must also be. I wondered if they sling off their outfits and put on their pjs the moment they walk in the door at night
Some people at the seminar clearly had big difficulties and issues in their lives and even just listening to Nik and Eva’s own life troubles must have been a inspiration in terms of how things can be transformed. The fact they showed their own vulnerability was a way of connecting with their audience and creating a warmth and rapport within the room; they are actually normal people, with real personal success refusing to be defined by their pasts. They were candid about their family and their lives and that was endearing.
The day had emotional moments and I was surprised how emotional I felt listening to The Speakmans and their attendees’ stories. I am able to separate myself from my clients’ issues as a hypnotherapist. It is an essential part of the job.
The seminar included various topics along with phobias and phobic responses, PTSD, OCD, lack of self esteem, labelling and over use of medication for mental health in 21st Century.
The ‘medication bit’ for me was really interesting. I agreed that, mostly, the use of medicating mental health issues doesn’t resolve the root cause but instead works on removing the symptoms. I find that in my private practice I see many people who are on medication but don’t want to be or feel that when they have reduced or come off it the symptoms return – I can’t imagine why? (Sarcasm alert!).
If you have a broken bone and you take a painkiller the pain may go away, or it might not, or you might have some new symptoms that might need to be treated to ( maybe from the medication or maybe as a side effect of not treating the broken bone). Ultimately if you stop the painkillers the bone won’t be better. Hmmm! Resolve the cause of the issue and remove the symptoms.
The real examples of helping people live included Nik and Eva’s intuitive questioning. They used NLP (Neuro Lingustic Programming) and some hypnotic techniques. One great example of what they helped on the day was one woman’s snake phobia. Since visiting a dark reptile house as a toddler the phobia had been present for what was probably around 40 years. It transpired it had originated as a phobia of the dark which had mutated. She had never considered the dark tunnel as being the issue but instead was blaming the snake for her having been scared. You could visibly see the relief in the woman when she realised that snakes are fine.
So, if you have the opportunity to see The Speakmans in action do go.
And, if you have a particular issue you want to resolve find a therapist. As all TV therapists, they have a very long waiting list but I’d recommend hypnotherapy, of course, which can help many issues. Ring around and find someone qualified and insured. Look at a professional hypnotherapy body such as the General Hypnotherapy Register (GHR). And, importantly, someone you feel comfortable with, someone you trust. You can relieve yourself of the past to live your life more positively today.
Contact Amy Brown for more information about her Hypnotherapy services.
So, Mindfulness, what is it? Well, following Lisa Milnor of Shaping Clarity’s course this is my interpretation. Firstly, we often think that the things we think are true. Not so. We do actually have a choice:
- Believe these thoughts and except their consequences
- Challenge these thoughts and alter the consequences.
- Face our thoughts, let them be and see what happens.
Mindfulness is living in the moment, being aware of this moment. It’s all we have. We don’t truly have the past or the present. However, our thoughts can be affected by the past or the future, and that is something we allow to happen. With practice, we can learn to realise that our thoughts are simply that, thoughts. They are not the truth and therefore we do not need to hang on to them. In fact we can turn to them, face them and learn to let them go. Accept them as they are, without judging them or analysing them and instead bring ourselves to the now. A simple way to do this is through our breath. The next breath you are about to take is the only time this breath will be taken, never again. Take a moment now to be with your next 3 breathes now – allowing any thoughts to fade away.
As a hypnotherapist I am fully aware of how powerful our minds are. We are capable of so much yet we can limit ourselves to things being the way they are. As I sometimes explain to my clients, even if you have a thought more than once it doesn’t mean it’s the truth, no more than the first time you thought it. Actually if we want to change what’s going on there are various ways. Mindfulness and Hypnotherapy are two of those ways and they happen to compliment each other well.
Mindfulness is a conscious way of being; we are human beings not human doings, though as Lisa pointed out this can be a more appropriate term a lot of the time. Hypnotherapy, meanwhile, works on the subconscious mind altering unwanted beliefs so they fit with conscious desires and goals. Together they are a wonder. I sometimes recommend Lisa’s courses to clients, when appropriate, a great way to compound and build on the subconscious mind and whatever they have already achieved through hypnotherapy.
At the moment I am enjoying the book ‘The Power of Now’ by Eckhartt Toll which describes the link between or subconscious minds and our conscious minds. We hook onto the conscious thoughts about the past or present that have come from our subconscious minds protection instincts. If we can separate ourselves off from these, be the onlooker as it were, we can be in the now. We can disconnect ourselves from our subconscious’ protection that is based on the unknown future and, therefore, it’s made up concerns or thoughts. Equally unrest or fears which are based on the past are not actually relevant here and now. That past is gone.
What I feel I have learnt about mindfulness, or, at least, how I see it, is that it is a conscious mind activity ( or a lack of activity) that enables the art of acceptance. This is done by placing our attention on now, right now, here, now and without judgement or criticism but instead with compassion, care and kindness to ourselves and to others.
I also have discovered the best revelation of all, turning and facing our feelings and thoughts, what is here now, can transform those feelings into something unexpected. I have found on a number of occasions that strong disruptive emotions just fade away once they are looked at face on, accepted without judgement. They are there, so are we. Be here, be with them, where is it, what does it look and feel like; then see what happens.
For more information on Lisa’s courses look for Shaping clarity and Mindfulness in Skipton.
Simple changes for weight management this new year – part 2. ( See part 1 first.)
Here are 5 more tips to start your weight loss journey ( maybe even another 5 to come in February):
- What have you discovered about you inner voice? Write it down and be aware of what things come up regularly. What is your main aim right now? Is it to be slim or is it more important to reward yourself or to fit in with your friends by eating like them perhaps?
- When do you eat? When you are famished or bloated? It is good to maintain your blood sugar levels and by eating when slightly hungry and stopping as soon as you are pleasantly satisfied you help yourself to become used to appropriate levels of hunger.
- Write down (or photograph) everything you eat. Being honest is the key here. Who are you fooling if you lie because it certainly isn’t your waist line?
- Eat your food on a small plate while sat at the table. Food eaten here is recognised as an eaten meal compared to when eating on your lap in front of the TV or grazing as you wander about the kitchen.
- Enjoy your food. Chew slowly, placing your cutlery down between mouthfuls. Chew each mouthful 30 – 35 times; you will eat far less this way. Be mindful and focus upon each mouthful of food. What are the flavours and the textures? Allow yourself to really enjoy the mouthful of food you are currently eating – how can you enjoy food if your focus is on the next mouthful.
Hypnotherapy is the perfect support mechanism. With tailored suggestions for your subconscious mind, based on your lifestyle, you drastically improve the chance of your weight management being maintained. I have clients past and present whose lives have been and are being transformed as I write this. See testimonials for more information. Weight management hypnotherapy programmes are available for you to book now. Contact Amy for more information.
Weight loss is the biggest New Year’s resolution. So how are you going to make sure the weight drops off this 2017 and importantly that it is maintained? Is it going to be about chance? Or is going to be through proper change?
Simple changes for weight management this new year
Here are 5 tips to start your weight loss journey ( 5 more to come in January):
- Do not starve yourself, eat enough. Eat 3 meals a day, every day. A small, healthy breakfast, lunch and dinner, (or tea, or supper, depending what you call it).
- Use a side plate. This helps to control portion size. Psychologically a full small plate is more of a meal than a half empty large plate.
- Drink water. A large glass of water drunk before you eat anything can satiate hunger, drink it and then wait- thirst is often mistaken for hunger.
- Teach yourself to be in tune with your hunger levels. Do you know what hunger or a feeling of satisfaction really feels like? Learn to listen to your body.
- Be your own judge or referee. Begin by watching and listening to your inner voice. Are you justifying that ‘snack’? Perhaps as a reward, a break time, a boredom reliever, appreciation for another person or a part of celebration, for example. Maybe your inner voice justifies that mince pie with ‘I’ve worked hard today and it is Christmas after all. I deserve it’. You can think a thought and choose not to act on it, it is not the truth.
Look out for 5 more tips in early January.
Hypnotherapy is the perfect support mechanism. With tailored suggestions for your subconscious mind, based on your lifestyle, you drastically improve the chance of your weight management being maintained. Some people have already been proactive and booked their initial hypnotherapy for January – great planning and commitment for their life. Contact Amy for more information.