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All matter has form and substance made up of a collections of cells, consisting of collections of molecules, atoms, protons, neutrons, and electrons.
People push and pull like a magnet in a relationships. Opposites attract, likes and similarities repel. When you hold two magnets together and their opposite charged surfaces connect they pull together, when you turn one around and try to push them together you can feel a force pushing them apart (electromagnetic force).
Space and sub atomic particles. The atom consists of 99,9999 % space, but this space is not empty. It´s filled with pure energy. It means that you are an energy being. This fleshy, bony “thing” you call your body is actually an energy-body moving around in an ocean of energy.
Abraham Maslow’s ‘hierarchy of needs’ shows that the need to belong is secondary only to your survival needs, John Bowlby’s attachment theories suggests that a child needs a trusting connection with a caregiver to prosper as an adult, connection is essential.
At the Heart of your Relationships lives Connection.
‘Real connection is more than just talking to others or sharing interests. When you touch someone’s heart and emotionally attach. Your atoms, the building blocks of your presence in the universe become entangled.’
When you think of someone you love deeply or a mother’s inexplicable knowledge of their child in danger; stop and look at the evidence. There is proof that we are all connected, and it has more to do with the creation of the universe than the simple fact that we are all humans.
Your body is energy; it is electrical nature. If you shuffle your feet across a carpet and then touch something made of metal, you get an electrical shock. If you step on a piece of glass you feel pain immediately, because it is electrically transmitted along the nerves to your brain.
There is a vast ocean of energy, even though you cannot perceive it with your five senses, they have an effect on you. Qi, chi or Prana is a Life force that exists inside you, through you and around you. Your physical body moves in the world of matter, a subtler aspect of you, woven within and throughout your physical body, moves and interacts on a level of pure energy.
The Heart is the most powerful source of electromagnetic energy in the body, creating the largest rhythmic electromagnetic field of the body’s organs. Your heart has “electrical circuits,” you can measure the electrical activity by using a electrocardiograph. The magnetic field produced by the heart is more than 100 times greater in strength than the field generated by the brain and can be detected up to 3 feet away from the body, in all directions’ (Heartmath Institute).
Communication is not only expressed through the external, facial movements, voice qualities, gestures and body movements. It is also subtle and energetic operating just below your conscious level of awareness. When people are engaged in deep conversation, they begin to fall into a subtle dance, synchronizing their movements and postures, vocal pitch, speaking rates and length of pauses between responses important aspects of your wholeness and wounding also can become linked and synchronized with another person. More about the Power of Touch.
More profound than conversation, true connection happens without words.You are broadcasting emotions all the time. Thoughts and feelings are energy frequencies that transcend space and time. You transmit and receive information through your thoughts and feelings all the time. This can be overwhelming. More about The power of thought.
Let go of habitual unconscious and energetic emotional patterns and underlying stress. Learn to replace these with new, healthier patterns that establish increased emotional stability, mental clarity, and balance as a state of being.
Join me on the Heart of Relationships workshop on Sunday 20th May 2018 10 – 4pm in North London Hampstead. £160
Guided meditations with Aisha will help you to open your heart, encouraging you to connect deeply and creatively. Teaching you how to tap into the your own life-force, flow and creativity.
Taking Charge of your Erotic Charge.
Sexual excitement does not just happen; it is generated within you, however unknowingly.
YOU are in charge of your erotic charge, however strongly you might be inclined to think otherwise. It is important to understand this in the context of conscious and intimate relationships. Especially when your mind drifts into an eroticised consideration or encounter with someone other than your partner. At these times, you need to recognise that lingering with such charge (fuelling it and fleshing it out through fantasy, however briefly) is not something you cannot help doing, it is something you are responsible for. It is a choice.
Seeking erotic charge might be something you engage in not to celebrate the connection with your partner, but to distract you from suffering. You might use the erotic charge to compensate for your lack of deep connection, to provide a pleasurably consoling refuge from what is troubling you.
Conscious relationships do not place the erotic charge as central to sex, even though it is at its most intensely alive and vital at this stage of sexual arousal. Whatever its intensity, it is truly healthy as it is being used to serve and deepen the connection with your partner. Great relationships need to be fed and nourished.
Sex remains in its shallow form, until the distance numbness or relationship problem which has been undeniably present has been named, which has been diverting the attention and energy previously devoted to building and maintaining an erotic charge.
A Sense of healthy sexuality does not rely on erotic charge alone. Passion arises not only from stimulation but from intimacy rooted in deep mutual trust. Intimacy relies on the most potent of all aphrodisiacs; wide awake unconditional love, love that is already sentient in openness, communication and connection. Erotic charge between you and your partner, creates genuine intimacy, becomes thrilling and alive, supporting your relationship.
Seeking erotic charge outside your relationship If you are possessed by an erotic charge; overvaluing it to the point where you are considering everything around you as a potential erotic target for your sexual appetite. Can blind you to the nonsexual dynamics that may be giving a charge (or lack of) to the sexual direction you seek. Flirting proclaims your sexual readiness, availability and potency. When you create an erotic charge with someone other than your partner you reinforce the distance between yourself and your partner; you are ensuring that your intimacy will not go any deeper, in fact will likely diminish. It keeps you safely in the shallowness of encounters, regardless of the depths suggested through your eye contact and body language. Animating and indulging your sexual capacity however subtle or discreet keeps intimacy with your partner unstable, dangerously close to betraying your relationship. The option here is not to repress your Erotic Charge, but become conscious of it and your relationship.
You can stop your need to advertise or broadcast your sexual availability and you can stop being bound to creating the intensity of erotic charge and relying on its presence to make yourself feel better. When you move beyond teasing yourself and others with the promise and possibilities of sex, you are in a position to embody a deeper pleasure, that eventually transmutes into ecstasy.
Take charge of your erotic charge – give it enough room and allow it to exist with appropriate boundaries and it will turn into liberated energy.
Taking charge of your erotic charge involves a NO that makes possible a deeper YES. The yes is where joy exists, welcoming all that supports you in embodying what you need in order to have a truly good relationship.
Flirting and or exploring the possibilities of sexual encounters with other people when you are in a relationship is a form of betrayal. The person flirting may discount their partner telling them there is nothing wrong or they are over reacting. In fact, they have little awareness that they are doing something they ought not to be. It exerts a strong pull that keeps the relationship unstable. Depth and true connection come far in behind the promises and opportunities of being sexually pleasured however indirectly. Oddly, this is an important stage in relationship where romanticism and the illusion of true connection and depth is at its strongest. Deflection conveniently turns the attention onto the other person. Denial, avoidance, being too busy changing the subject, silence are all strategies preventing true connection.
When you present a clean exterior and an innocent interior, you keep your egocentricity intact.
In conscious relationships flirting simply disappears, except with your partner, where it takes shape mostly as loving play within erotic charge.
Flirting outside the relationship disappears because the urge for it has no energy left. There is no desire to seek or titillate yourself with the possibility of sexual engagement with anyone other then your partner. Whatever might distract you from your intimacy with your partner simply carries no appeal, there is no need for distractions from the connection with your partner. It allows for a deepening passion, which grows parallel with a deep intimacy you know and gratefully share. Your attention for each other does not wander, nor is it forced, it is natural.
Flirting with anyone other than your partner is a form of erotizing an unresolved wound or insufficiently met need (such as wanting to be wanted). A form of adolescent sexuality – flirting to signal your sexual availability, titillating yourself and increasing your arousal levels without really taking a look at your apparent need to do so.
You would be well versed to explore deeply what turns you off rather than explore your efforts to get turned on.
It does not matter how subtle or removed the flirting is, or whether your partner notices. It is still a betrayal. An irresponsible wondering of attention, making the sexual charge with another person more important than the bond with your partner. You have a choice – a no that makes a possible deeper yes. It is your turning away, that deepens your turning towards, that matters most.
Join me on a weekend workshop that explores erotic charge.
Discover how to connect with your vital energy and experience more flow, more intimacy and more fearlessness in your life.
Many people know the language of Sex without knowing the language of Intimacy.
3rd – 5th March | London NW3| 10 – 4pm | £260
There is no nudity or sexual contact during the workshop.
“Romantic Love delivers us into the passionate arms of someone who will ultimately trigger the same frustrations we had with our parents, but for the best possible reason! Doing so brings our childhood wounds to the surface so they can be healed.” (Harville Hendrix)
One of the greatest relationships secrets you need to understand, to transform your relationships is that every person in your life is a mirror, reflecting backs parts of you. These are templates or idealised images of positive and negative qualities that your parents or caregivers possessed. Unconsciously you are drawn to somebody who has these qualities. In other words, your partner carries some of your shadow.
Your relationships show you what you struggle with and need to work on, they mirror what you have learned to identify or disown during childhood. Superficially these patterns may not appear to be like your parents or care givers, you will however, inevitably experience similar feelings you did as a child. These can be positive feelings of belonging, acceptance, safety and love.
A significant relationship can bring up painful feelings due to more traumatic experiences, which trigger old wounds. Unconsciously, you are seeking out a partner with whom you can heal these wounded parts.
One of the scariest places encountered in relationship is a deep inner sense of how you are not loved, where you do not know you are truly lovable just for being who you are, where you feel deficient and do not know your value. This is the raw wound of the heart, where you are disconnected from your true nature, your inner perfection. Beneath your conditioned and learnt behaviour, exists a basic nature of the human heart which is unconditioned, awake, and present, with a caring, inquisitive intelligence, and openness to reality. These two forces are always at work, and your life hangs in the balance.
It is human nature to contain these two sides, your journey involves working with both. Intimate relationships are a path because they touch both these sides of you and bring them into forceful contact.
Your beliefs about relationships, about men, about women, about love and life in general are all there for you to see in your relationships.
Make a list of frustrations, problems and unmet needs from your parents or caregivers for example;
“she never listened to me and that made me feel…”
“He never had time for me and that made me feel…”.
“No one noticed me or made me feel protected…”
Once you have completed that list, make a list of issues you have with your partner and how they make you feel. Compare the lists and notice any similarities. Discuss with your partner the similarities. When they understand that they have triggered your childhood wounds, you cab do the work needed to keep each other safe and meet each others needs.
Every quality you recognise in your partner, whether you admire it or not, is your mirror; it shows you who you are. The more you dislike a certain quality, the more it shows you a part of your shadow. When your partner acts in a particular way that upsets you, you will find that you too act in the same way, most likely not towards them but towards yourself and probably others. The more a particular action frustrates you, the more it reflects a part of you that you are not owning.
The Turtle and the Hailstorm
You may have a lot in common with your partner, but may be incompatible in how you handle stress and conflict. When it comes to handling stress and conflicts, people’s reactions fall into two categories: minimizers or maximizers.
When minimizers are anxious, they contain their energy and go inside. Like a turtle, they retreat into their shell. When maximizers are anxious, they tend to express themselves loudly. Like a Hailstorm Their energy flows outward and they prefer to process their feelings with others. (Harville Hendrix, “Getting The Love You Want”)
Turtles process slowly and inwardly. From the outside, it looks like not much is happening and as if the person is avoiding rather than addressing the issue. However, the turtle processes their feelings and thoughts quietly on the inside, reflecting carefully before responding. Hailstorms visibly get things done; they love lists.
When a Turtle feels flooded and becomes overloaded, they need to withdraw. This feels like the Turtle disappeared to the Hailstorm making them more anxious, they will start hailing to get their partner’s attention.
Both of you need to learn to accommodate each others differences in how you process difficulties.
The Hailstorm can learn to give the Turtle a little shell time and make them feel safe to come out again soon by letting them know how much they are appreciated and valued.
To entice the turtle, you can,
1. Ask them what they need right now. Sometimes they are not sure, be curious about why they are hiding.
2. Do not do anything; give them space.
3. Write a short note of appreciation and leave it somewhere for them to find.
“Hailstorms hail because they are overwhelmed. They often feel like they are holding the weight of the world. And when you retreat, the Hailstorm feels even more alone. So the minute you hear a rumble, give them your full attention. Offer kindness and support.” (Hendrix)
The fastest way to get the storm to stop is to reassure the Hailstorm, they can rely on you and you will do your part to keep them safe and the sun will shine once again.
To calm the hailstorm
1 Respond! Let them know you are not retreating. Respond with facial expressions, a kind note, a service or gesture that shows them you care how they feel.
2 Listen and repeat back how the Hailstorm is feeling. They might not feel heard. Demonstrate that you are listening and understand them.
3 Ask “Is there something I can do for you?” They need to know you are present and care for them.
Turtles and hailstorms can teach each other what they are each missing to become more whole.
“Turtles need to learn how to push their energy out and how to ‘show up’. This means expressing themselves loudly and clearly, like the Hailstorm does. T
he hailstorms need to learn the turtle’s wisdom of stepping back and containing their energy.” (Hendrix)
Ironically, both partners need to learn how to be more like each other. When you embrace the shadow in relationships you reclaim the parts which you have disowned, you can get closer to each other.
Which do you feel you are in relationship? A Turtle or a Hailstorm?
“As the Turtle becomes more storm like, and the Hailstorm becomes more turtle like, balance is restored”
Join me on the next Couples Retreat
There are moments in life when everything just seems to feel right.
Things go according to plan, relationships are full of energy and love, and life just flows.
When you feel strong, you feel safe, feeling safe allows you to feel your vulnerability.
FLOW a short and simple word describes a sense of seemingly effortless movement.
When your concentration is focused. Your mind does not wander; you are totally involved in what you are doing. Your energy is flowing very smoothly. You feel relaxed, comfortable, and energetic.
Have you ever felt like that?
A blissful feeling that warms and enlivens you. When you know who you are and what you want in life. When you are on a path to achieving goals that you truly value. You feel excited and motivated. You feel focused and full of energy. You feel connected. You feel alive.
Everything you experience joy or pain, interest or boredom is embodied in both mind and body as information. If you are able to manage this information, you can decide what your life will be like.
“Life is a series of natural and spontaneous changes. Don’t resist them; that only creates sorrow. Let reality be reality. Let things flow naturally forward in whatever way they like.” Lao-Tzu
Flow happens when there is order in consciousness. This happens when your energy or attention is invested in realistic goals, and when your skills match the opportunities for taking action.
Flow is a form of energy that can create more positive energy.
Finding your Flow weekend workshop will explore the process of achieving happiness through achieving mastery over your inner life. You will begin by considering how consciousness works, and how it is achieved.
“Flow with whatever is happening and let your mind be free. Stay centered by accepting whatever you are doing. This is the ultimate.” – Chuang Tzu
Working together, we can find flow by:
• Increasing your self awareness
• Creating new definitions of success
• Setting clear and realistic goals
• Understanding your motivation
• Being proactive
• Not stressing about your performance or trying to force yourself to do things
• Cultivating an environment that is conducive to flow by healthy habits
• Giving yourself enough time
• Minimizing interruptions and distractions
• Being mindful and monitoring your emotional states
• Recognising your achievements
• Practicing gratitude
When you are in flow, you work towards freedom and security. You have balance and direction and you are doing what makes you feel alive.
YOU are responsible for your happiness.
Fear of vulnerability creates tension, being on constant guard, terrified of a future that does not yet exist creates suffering. The belief is that if you are protected or feel safe, you cannot be harmed is not the same as being strong.
No matter how much structure you create in your life, there will always be things that you cannot control; if you allow it, these things can be a huge source of anger, frustration and stress.
When you resist it’s like trying to swim upstream against a strong current getting nowhere. You may end up completely exhausted and out of breath!
The simple solution: learn to go with the flow.
“Smile, breathe and go slowly.” – Thich Nhat Hanh
Going with the flow, this means rolling with the punches. Accepting change without getting angry or frustrated. Embracing what life gives you, rather than trying to mold life to be exactly as you want it to be.
Finding your Flow is a fully immersive transformational weekend workshop, where you will be guided finding your flow. Through your senses, sound, movement and stories you will begin to move into flow, enabling the energy of your heart to flow fully. You will journey towards your authentic self finding strength in vulnerability – without the need to hide or run away. When you are in flow you become fully available to yourself and others, opening you up to give and receive love.
London NW3 | 10 -4pmBook Now
When you live from the heart you feel calm and energetic, accomplished, joyful, strong and at ease. Great relationships thrive in this place.
When I work with couples, I observe how they argue. I can tell a lot about whether couples are going to make it and help them move towards more loving and successful relationships. There are changes couples can make in their responses to each other that can make a huge difference to their relationship.
Frequent arguments, lack of communication, fear of conflict, heated exchanges, and avoidance of issues are all common complaints among couples I work with.
The impact of high conflict in relationships creates negative emotions and anxiety for everyone including your children if you have them, your parenting skills are no good when you are arguing.
These are four hostile forms of communication that put couples at high risk for breaking up or divorce when these patterns become habits.
Criticism blame and character attacks general complaining. Antidote stay specific, issue simple complaints using I statements; I feel taken advantage of when….
Defensiveness be aware of your own behaviour; righteous indignation, or being an innocent victim as a way of turning your back on a perceived attack. Defensiveness is destructive because it escalates tension and creates an adversarial interaction. You might feel taken advantage of, just as much as you might not accept your accountability and responsibility in the situation. The antidote, try empathy active listening repeat back what your partner has described as their complaint adding empathy and accepting responsibility.
Contempt bolstered by hostility and anger is damaging, eye rolling and name calling are markers of contempt it is damaging to health and builds a lack of respect. The antidote to this is to build fondness and admiration, express admiration and gratitude to build appreciation and respect.
Stonewalling withdrawing, lack of expression, no emotional connection, monitoring gazes, not listening exiting the room avoiding conflict.
Antidote ask permission to disengage with the conflict if it is too much instead of disengaging in a hostile way and reconnecting in a more connected way. Arranging a time when this is possible.
Flooding John Gottman has a vivid word for this physiological “fight-or-flight” reaction. Flooding occurs when you have hostile arguments where the Four Horseman (criticism, contempt, defensiveness, and stonewalling) are allowed free reign.
Physical signs of flooding are; rapid heart rate, high blood pressure, sweating, and the overwhelming urge to leave or to say something hurtful. When flooded, you operate from a self-preservation mind set. You seek mainly to protect yourself from the turmoil of an escalating argument, either by becoming aggressive verbally or physically, or by trying to get away.
Take notice of your partner’s anger to resolve conflict before it erupts.
Recognise the cycle that you have created together, take ownership of your part in that cycle. Change the cycle by interrupting it, by changing your usual response, step back and doing something different. This is often the very opposite of what you feel like doing in the moment.
What fight have you recently found yourself starting? How will you approach the problem in the future?
FOR MORE INFORMATION OR TO BOOK A COUPLES APPOINTMENT OR INTENSIVEBook
Get in touch with Aisha directly on 07855 781210
The depth of intimacy with yourself is the starting point for profound love. Intimacy is courageously peering within, aiming the light of conscious awareness into the dark crevasses within yourself; acknowledging fears of abandonment, crippling jealousies, your sense of inadequacy, vices, triggers, shame, or predisposition to anger and outbursts of long buried rage.
It is about showing up and facing the demons in your abyss created in reaction to traumatic experiences. By working to make allies of these misunderstood enemies you can truly create an intimate relationship with yourself unearthing and transmuting, you begin a revolution. This is how family generational patterns are undone. It begins with YOU.
True intimacy attracts fellow travellers along the path, based on honesty and truth. Your ability to look non judgmentally at yourself, at them, at the world will be attractive and deeply appreciated along with your infectious dexterity in igniting change. People will find respite in your presence. Shared intimacy takes on a boldness and daring that is refreshing, passionate, and nurturing. As the love you feel for yourself deepens, your capacity to enjoy intimate love takes root and rockets.
The dark side of human nature is often described as the Ego, the id, or the lower self. Carl Jung called it the “shadow.”
The shadow represents the negative side of the personality, the sum total of all those unpleasant qualities that you would prefer to hide. Everything that is in your conscious awareness is in the light. Everything of substance which stands in the light whether it is a tree or an idea also casts a shadow. What remains in darkness is outside of your awareness.
When something is held back or something is left unsaid in, a shadow blocks intimacy and connection weakens.
Too many shadows the intimacy fades or becomes convoluted and confusing. The process of conscious relationship is one of staying fully open. Transparent. Loving. No matter what. Even when the difficult emotions are triggered and one feels dread, fear, abandoned, lost, alone, rejected, anxious, insecure or misunderstood.
These are moments in relationship when you shut the other person out or down. When you do not want them to see you in a particular way, be that way, feel that way, or act that way because when they are like that, they do not give you what you want or need.
When two people do the work of staying open to difficult emotion it creates an opportunity for intimacy to surface beyond projections and fantasies.
You are seen and loved for who you are, not who you need to be to make a person feel a certain way.
Relationships are opportunity to practice intimacy, opening up and revealing all of yourself to another who holds you in unconditional love in that light the shadows are dissolved by love as you hold each other in the process of waking up and release old trauma.
This is the path of Conscious Relationships.
‘We do not see things as they are. We see things as we are.’
Unaware of your shadows you may only encounter them through other people, in the form of projections.
You may tend to see in other people the qualities and characteristics that comprise your shadow; that is, everything that you think is “not you.”
Just think for a moment of your like and dislikes.
Relationships do not mirror your ego back to you; rather, they mirror back your shadow, the other, unacknowledged half of your Inner Self.
Defined by your willingness to stay open and share and hold each other as your shadows arises. Defined by your ability to recognise when you are triggered, and to own your emotional states rather than project them onto others. Defined by your ability to hold each other in love when you are in a difficult emotional state.
A way to change this involves you taking the time to get to know yourself to avoid repeating unwanted patterns in relationships and circumstances.
As a result, synchronicities and miracles start to occur. You begin to live in a flow where the possibilities are endless.
The secret to living in flow is to become conscious of your shadow self – the part you do not know and learn to integrate it to become whole.
You may think your personality is who you are.
Blind spots prevent you from having conscious relationships with yourself and others.
Learning to release them is important to be able to create happy loving relationships with yourself and everyone around you and wake up your inner power and attract the relationships you want.
The shadow is that part of you that erupts spontaneously and unexpectedly when you behave in a destructive way to yourself or another person. The aftermath may leave you feeling humiliated, ashamed, and guilty. The shadow is that part of you that feels like it cannot be tamed or controlled.
There are cultural shadows held by groups of people – topics that are not commonly spoken about are held in the collective shadow, as taboo, forbidden topics or areas.
The shadow is anything that is unacceptable to you, anything that is hidden or denied including what what you want to hide from, what you do not want to know about yourself.
Are you familiar with blame? The one thing you may never ask for yet give freely. Essentially, blame is projection; it is your personality recognising your shadow.
An emotionally mature or genuine love develops with a mutually empathic connection between two people, which nourishes both of your mental, physical and emotional growth and capacity for compassion and self-actualization.
The neurochemistry of love relationships can merge into a dangerous mix of drugs more difficult to part with than alcohol, cocaine or heroine.
When you can’t let go of resentment and keep feeding your anger by continually pointing out everything the other person is doing and has done wrong, blaming him/her for your pain, then this issue is deeper and relates to your childhood wounding which is coming to surface. It relates to your needs not being met or old wounds from past relationships you haven’t fully processed and let go of are being reactivated. The same goes if you keep diminishing yourself with guilt and shame, making yourself feel worthless. It relates to your inner child that is carrying wounds you have not made conscious yet.
The wiring of your sensory brain and body when not modulated by your consciousness (awareness to influence decision making) can leave you susceptible to falling in love with the state of “falling in love” This can create powerful Sensory cravings that can switch off the frontal cortex (ability to consciously think and make optimal choices). Addictions can be a controlling factor in your life and relationships. Biologically speaking the human body is wired to gravitate toward what produces comfortable, feel-good sensations in you while also avoiding what produces pain and discomfort. The purpose of this design feature is to prompt you to both survive and thrive. Your body reminds you to avoid what is unhealthy, harmful or a threat to your survival, or to move towards fulfilling core drives that matter and create meaningful lives.
The state of falling in love, creates sensory signals consisting of a potent mix of chemicals, which have the power to change the sophisticated communication system between your Mind/ Body tampering with your ability to make healthy choices towards favouring intoxicating demands and quick feel good fixes.
If you experience fear or mistrust, your sensory system takes over.
Feel good hormones have the power to hinder your ability to make good choices, and hold your authentic wise-self (frontal cortex) captive, in a virtual prison of sorts, deceived by limiting unconscious beliefs and illusions of love and power.
Without consciousness your unconscious mind/body can not distinguish between pain or pleasure or that which threatens rather than promotes your growth and wellbeing and aliveness.
Discomfort is an essential part of growth, physical, mental and emotional; unnecessary pain leads to suffering. Pleasure is an emotional and physiological yearning for health and wellness, a sense of feeling good about your self and your capacity to contribute to life, create healthy, vibrant relationships that sustain you. Pleasure at the expense of your physical, mental and emotional wellbeing leads to needless and endless suffering of an addiction.
Learning how to receive and give love to yourself and another person is a great learning curve and challenge – it is not for the faint-hearted.
Addiction can be seen as pleasure-seeking, pain-avoiding, or seeking a quick-fix to have a sense of power or control even though it is temporary creating a false sense of self which ultimately avoids dealing with your shadow self. Working with the shadow can better help you integrate parts that thwart your intentions from forming conscious and healthy relationships. “Falling in love” can be seen as a beginning stage of a relationship which if nurtured can create genuine love with another person.
When you work on your shadow and uncover the character that is hiding within you. Uncovering its needs, what it is communicating to you, how you feel when it arises you, how you relate to it. It begins to lose its compulsive quality and does not drive you as much. When it releases its grip you are able to hear your authentic self – your internal intuitive and wise voice wisdom, the part of you that knows what is the right action. Jung suggested that that if we can shed a little light on our own darkness, it will remove some of the larger darkness from the world.
The right people will arrive at precisely the right time. Let your words be bricks in the foundations of the bridges others are striving to build. Let the wisdom gained through your committed intimacy be fruitful. Let love be your guide. And let your love speak profoundly
The true power and creativity unleashed from the shadow is your ability to see clearly and master the art of conscious relationships.
Learn more about discovering and integrating your shadow, bring your true self out of shadow and into the light.
On the workshop you will learn ways to transforming parts of your character with compassion and understanding, to find balance within all your relationships.
Begin the process of positive change on this interactive learning and growth experience.
Join me for the next workshop it is suitable for all
Image by Scott Wilton
Why go on a Retreat?
It may be that you feeling a little stressed lately? Living from The Heart Retreat could be just the thing for you. It may be that something is stirring inside, a call to explore some questions more deeply.
It may be the best investment you make for your self, health and all relationships. It may be that you are yearning for an opportunity to pause and look at your life from a new perspective, which often unlock answers to the questions that you just may not take the time to ask.
If you want to find balance of mind, body and spirit, or may need to find a quiet space to switch off.
You are guided to make a stronger your connection with your sense of self, which helps you to shift into new awareness about yourself and relationships. You will learn to master the art of conscious relationships where you make considered choices about your life and relationships while restoring a sense of balance of mind body and spirit.
Living from The Heart retreat provides a ‘container’ to connect to a deeper sense of meaning and self. Support is provided along the way during a healing and restorative, silent, creative and fun week. It can be a time for finding the courage to let go of things that no longer serve you or to become aware of what you are being drawn towards.
The retreat can provide a place, a space a moment in time to allow a deeper exploration; to discover within a renewed sense of meaning; to experience a deeper sense of connection and your willingness to be open more deeply and fully, in your heart, mind and body.
Transform challenges into positive, personal, professional and spiritual transitions
Living from the Heart will support and facilitate a process of being able to go beyond your familiar mind, with its logical and sometimes restrictive ways of seeing the world to a deeper, steadier and quieter place where new insight and inspiration can bring you closer to your true identity, your true Self. From this place of balance you will find fulfilment through living your life in a more congruent way.
Find a sacred and Healing space
Retreat for Individuals and Couples
September 2018 Portugal
Stay Young and Beautiful. Living from the Heart encourages you to live an authentic, healthier, happier, more joyful, purposeful life. To lead a life you can be proud of together with a lifestyle of practices that guide you towards a long healthy life. I encourage you to cultivate a set of practices to keep your mind, body and spirit engaged and strong and support your essence in the activities you immerse yourself in, changing and responding to your needs in the moment. Each moment helps you learn more about yourself and the world. People seek help when they recognise they are disconnected in some way from a life that supports and nurtures. People do not usually arrive knowing what is wrong with them, much of what causes suffering or dis-ease is often buried. People come with symptoms, which may be experienced as relationship difficulties, exhaustion, anxiety, depression, stress or tiredness. It may be that you are dealing with a bereavement, illness of a loved one, health problems, struggling with your career, or trying to create a new relationship or maintain the ones you have. When you become disconnected from what truly matters in life things can become really tough. Luckily, the answers and solutions can be found within you. Your energetic heart can be accessed through meditation, it is as vast as the entire universe. You can learn to access the power, clarity, insight, love, and peace of your heart. When you learn to listen to your heart you can gain access to the incredible qualities that you didn’t even know you had. When you have discovered and healed your heart, you can use your heart’s power and vulnerability to create a life you know is possible.
The first secret to Happiness and Longevity is to release judgements and cultivate an attitude towards not making up stories, or predefining age, or imposing limits to your true nature. The only true measure of life is not to measure it at all, but rather to simply live it fully. Live each day fully and actively. Lead a life that is rich and full of experience. This provides an edge to keep you healthy, flexible and strong. Live life according to your unique nature. Judgments provide for a life lived within a very defined set of rules with effectively limited or no free will. To live in this manner limits your potential and reduces the possibility of your actions.
“If you ignore the dragon, it will eat you. If you try to confront the dragon it will overpower you. If you ride the dragon, you will take advantage of its might and power.” — Chinese Proverb
The second secret to Happiness and Longevity is eating well.
Learn to listen to your body and respond to it by providing a good mixture of essences and nutrients to maintain your body’s optimum health. The body needs a balanced, varied and healthy diet. There are many books and literature that go into great detail about when, how and what you should eat. Essentially it is all about eating in balance and moderation. Many diets fail when they do not change in response to the changing needs of your body and climate. Experience and wisdom teaches a practice of treating food with respect with the least amount of processing. Food intake should be in moderation and balance. The respect you show towards your food’s life cycle mirrors the relationship with your own life cycle. Think. If an animal or plant is tortured during its growth, its essence will be saturated with fear, stress and imbalances. When this is consumed you devour its’ essence, any accumulated stress hormones or illness is taken into your own body. Eating such food promotes a life of fear and perpetuates mindless practices.
The third secret to Happiness and Longevity requires you to listen to your authentic nature.
Learn to accept yourself and lead a life of discovering who you are. Your nature is ever changing and remains the same. It is futile to attempt t resolve contradictions in life, instead learn to accept your nature. There are so many distractions, opinions, thoughts, ideas, desires, expectations, visions and images competing, working, trying to lead you to a supposedly better way. This chatter creates a distracting noise. How can you attain longevity if you are always busily moving to the rhythm of a larger world? Learn to live a long healthy life, move to rhythm of your own subtle cues, follow and trust your gut feelings and instincts. Longevity is pointless, unless you are your own person. Whats the point of extending misery? Meditate. Ask yourself ‘who am I’ and allow yourself to answer the question deep from within. Enter your inner space and ask, “Who am I?” You will arrive at a deeper experience of your consciousness and unique nature.
The fourth secret to Happiness and Longevity is exercise. Move your Body.
A physical practice keeps the body healthy. It is critical to keep the body moving and subtle. Exercise such as Yoga and Qigong help keep your body strong and flexible for an entire life time. They are both moving meditation. Working with the breath or pranayama is fundamental for the development of physical well-being, meditation, awareness, and enlightenment, it is both a form of meditation in itself and a preparation for deep meditation. Breathing or pranayama can rapidly bring the mind to the present moment and reduce stress. Breath work along side psychotherapy can relieve depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder, stress and anxiety. By inducing stress resilience, breath work enables you to rapidly and compassionately relieve many forms of suffering. Stress is not caused alone by stressful situations or relationships – it is your response and reaction that creates a response in your mind and body.
The fifth secret to Happiness and Longevity is to attend to your attitude. Attitude is everything.
Your attitude to life is one of the key elements of your personality. It defines how you view reality. If you treat yourself as an opponent or as something to be dominated, there will be resistence. The more you resist the world, the more the world will resist back. The world is larger and more powerful than you, the battle will be lost when you make life a fight. Resistance is at the core of psychotherapy. It determines the process and is largely why psychotherapy can take so long. Understanding it, facing it, and working through are at the heart of therapy, One can resist memory by recalling facts but not the impact on yourself and others nor the experience. Reconnecting with the totality of an experience or relationship can free you from symptoms that cause distress such as anxiety and the anticipation of suffering or humiliation. Becoming conscious of your experience and range of feelings and perceptions can transform you. It is fine to fight occasionally, it is important to stand up for yourself, but to make a stand excessively against the world means the world will erode you eventually. There are times in your life when you are open to new ideas that run counter to the demands of your resistance, when your mind and heart are not open and resistance is high, nothing can reach you. Resistance works like friction it may feel like everything in your psyche is pushing you in the opposite direction. Resistance, develops from your defences, which are at the heart of your personality. It can take many forms, appearing as mistrust, anger, feeling discouraged, supercilious, bored, boring, confused, confusing, or dependent. When triggered it is central to your functioning and necessary for your survival.
Leading a life with low stress is desirable and necessary to accessing happiness and longevity. Stress is a major factor that contributes towards premature aging and dis-ease. Harness a good attitude which concentrates on good humour and low stress. Laughter is a healing balm with real healing powers, laughter has the power to charm and influence those around you in daily life, laughter can extend life, and make days truly worth living. Laughter is beautiful, it is infectious. The sound of laughter is far more contagious than a cough, or sneeze. Laughter can bring people closer together. Laughter triggers healthy physical changes in the body. Humour and laughter can strengthen your immune system, boost your energy, diminish pain, and protects you from the damaging effects of stress. When you laugh, you enter a state of “no thought” or emptiness, if only for a microsecond. With practice, laughter can be a powerful path to consciousness and enlightenment.
The sixth secret to Happiness and Longevity is cultivating a spiritual practice. You are more than a mind and body. You are a trinity of mind, body and spirit. Your Spirit is uniquely defined within the actions of how you lead your life. A spiritual practice keeps both the mind and body in balance with each other. A practice can be anything that helps you to find peace within your own nature. There are day to day activities you can perform with an intent of spirituality. Recognise how natural and easy it is to carve out a spiritual connection with the world. Spiritual practice is a combination of intent within your actions and the exploration of mysteries in your life. Your spiritual practice needs to define and refine over time responding to your needs and circumstances. If you are to lead a long life, then it helps to have a reason to do so. A spiritual practice provides motivation for enjoying a longer happier life not a miserable one.
The seventh secret to Happiness and Longevity is to avoid addiction. Addiction is a process of self destruction. It redefines an empty space with something external to your true nature. It is important to live as yourself. not in a haze. There are addictive substances that appear to solve problems; using drugs to shift the balance of your mind, to fit a social norm, using television, mobile phones and social media to help pass the time, all addictions erase a persons’ unique nature. The root cause of suffering is addiction or aversion to what you think will make you happy. ‘When you look at addictions’ says Ram Dass, ‘it’s not like ‘evil,’ it is just an attempt to ‘get back.’ The problem is that most behaviours that get you back, will allow you to be in the presence of something divine temporarily, it does not allow you to remain ‘at home’ in your unique nature. Live life as your self. Life is a challenge and the struggle has edges which defines your unique shape.
The eighth secret to Happiness and Longevity is unspoken.
Learn how to put these into practice on the next Healing The Heart Retreat 17th – 24th September 2015 in Portugal. The Venue is located in Central Portugal between the towns of Tomar and Sertã and near the small town of Cernache do Bonjardim. The nearest Airport is Lisbon which is approximately 1 hour and 45 mins away from the venue. Set in a tranquil location in the forested hills of Central Portugal, far away from the crowds, just 3 km from the beautiful ‘Castelo de Bode’ lake and 8 km from the small town of Cernache de Bonjardim.
“Your mind is your servant, your body is your vehicle and your soul is your residence.” Yogi Bhajan. Many people are stressed out and distracted more than ever. Unfortunately, there is no app for that. There is however a radically simple remedy; get outside. Nature can lower your blood pressure; fight off depression, and dissolve stress and anxiety consequently helping you build harmonious relationships.
When we naturally seek out nature; we have a sense of wellbeing and serenity. When we are enveloped in natural surroundings it strikes a chord in us; it reminds us in the deepest most basic way that we are an integral part of the natural world. When we forget that we are nature we suffer. This simple, yet profound, realisation that we are part of the natural world is at the core of Living from The Heart.
Shinrin-yoku means taking in the forest atmosphere or forest bathing, the Japanese Ministry coined the term and the encouraged people to visit forests to relieve stress, anxiety and improve health. Spending time in nature around trees or in green spaces can improve your health; it can reduce stress hormones cortisol and increase your immune defence system. According to Yoshifumi Miyazaki, Japan’s leading scholar on forest medicine, a walk in the forest calms a worried mind improves your health and may even help fight cancer.
Nature restores mental functioning in the same way that food and water restore bodies.
On Living from The Heart Retreats we work outside in nature and guide meditative walks or shinrin-yoku. It provides an instant antidote for stressed out individuals and couples in conflict and healing balm; relieving stress healing trauma and helping the immune system recover from stress and anxiety. Forest bathing is good for both the body and the spirit. Our bodies are part of nature and when we are in nature, to there is a natural healing to it.
‘I go to nature to be soothed and healed, and to have my senses put in order.’ John Burroughs
‘In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks. ‘John Muir
I take much care when choosing environments to work in and run retreats, workshops and training which lend themselves to healing mind, body and spirit. I lead Individuals, couples and group outdoor psychotherapy, Meditative nature walks or shinrin yoku focused on healing Trauma and transforming stress and anxiety into vitality. This approach involves exploring your emotional issues while being in and walking in a natural location such as woodland or urban parks and Heaths. You may find it much easier to talk and open up while working and walking in the outdoors. The next Living from The Heart Retreat on 1st– 8th September 2016 will take place in a tranquil location in the forested hills of Central Portugal, far away from the crowds, just 3 km from the beautiful ‘Castelo de Bode’ lake and 8 km from the small town of Cernache de Bonjardim. The venue sits within a small valley surrounded by eucalyptus, pine and oak. Full of chi, the Trees with full, lush foliage create masses of the Qi or Chi (pronounced chee) life force that deflects toxic energy.
The natural chemicals trees secrete are collectively known as phytoncides. When we breathe in fresh air, we breathe in wood essential oils, airborne chemicals that plants give off to protect themselves from insects. Wood essential oils have antibacterial and antifungal qualities which help plants fight disease. When we breathe in these chemicals, our bodies respond by increasing the number and activity of a type of white blood cell called natural killer cells or NK. These cells kill tumours and virus infected cells in your body.
Spending time in nature increases endorphins. Taking a walk in nature or shinrin yoku is a sensory experience all five (six) senses are enveloped. It gives peace and calm to the mind. Depression is an insidious set of symptoms that harms your mood, your motivation for life, and your relationships. Being in nature and simply sitting looking at the trees reduce blood pressure as well as the stress-related hormones cortisol and adrenaline. Forest bathing or shinrin yoku significantly decreases anxiety, depression, anger, confusion and fatigue, because stress inhibits the immune system, the stress-reduction benefits are magnified in tandem with psychotherapy. When your environments are overloaded with stimulus or you are involved with multitasking over a long period can cause a drain on your internal resources. The best way to develop greater happiness and build internal strength is to have frequent experiences of peace and calm.When you have peace of mind and an open heart your relationships are harmonious.Healing Trauma
Many eastern traditions describe your energy field, including your body, as a unique map. The body stores information about the cause of a problem or an illness, the body also reveals what is needed in order to heal. Your thoughts, emotions, feelings and beliefs and your inner experiences positive or negative are energetically recorded in your energy field.
Illness begins from experiencing a problem with your energy levels. This is connected to your emotions and your mind and body. Dis-ease can exist many years before it physically presents itself as a dis – ease. Low energy may be experienced as a blockage or decrease of your energy or levels leading to a chi imbalance in particular organs or parts of the body. Many people overlook emotions as illness. It may signal the imbalance of chi, prana or Shakti in your system. Stubbornness can be caused by an imbalance of the heart energy. Fear can be due to an imbalance of the lung or the kidneys. Back pain can be caused by an imbalance of the kidneys and bladder. Many emotional and physical ailments can be traced to an imbalance of prana / chi in different parts of the body. You are lucky enough to be gifted with a period of grace due to the body’s resilience move towards balance and health.
‘There is a pleasure in the pathless woods, There is a rapture on the lonely shore, There is society, where none intrudes, By the deep sea, and music in its roar: I love not man the less, but Nature more, From these our interviews, in which I steal From all I may be, or have been before, To mingle with the Universe, and feel What I can ne’er express, yet cannot all conceal.’ Lord Byron
Stress can increase your susceptibility to dis-ease. Stressful life experiences can have significant effects on a variety of physiological systems, including the autonomic nervous system, the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis, and the immune system. Stressful life events such as:
Unresolved trauma can manifest in many ways, including anxiety disorders, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, panic attacks, intrusive memories flashbacks, obsessive-compulsive behaviours, addictions and self harm.
Individuals may suffer from repeating familiar scenarios, which are unconscious, habitual reenactments of elements of past traumatic experience which is classic of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. You may repeat scenarios you experienced or witnessed such as physical, emotional, or sexual abuse. For example, a survivor of childhood abuse may ‘unwittingly’ select an abusive partner in adult life, you may have grown up witnessing domestic violence and may demonstrate the same abusive behaviours toward others that were modeled to you in the past. Growing up in an unsupportive or unstable environment can create negative internal messages and beliefs about how loving relationships work. Childhood trauma can create difficulty with feeling emotions and impair your ability to think and reason in the grip of emotion. As a general rule, anything destructive that is left untreated — disease, trauma, stress, psychological disorders — can become progressively worse over time. “Trauma that is not genuinely felt will be reenacted in either symptom or behaviour and ultimately recreated in intimate relationships.” — Robert Naborsky, MD
One of Graham Greene’s characters famously said, “I suffer, therefore I am,” suggesting that pain is an inescapable, and perhaps incurable, part of the human condition. Through the use of mind-body techniques, healing trauma is possible, using rich practices and nature. Nature can provide symbols, archetypes and images of a healing nature that can provide an impetus for personal transformation that forms part of the therapeutic process.
Stress, anxiety, tensions Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and personal limitations can be transformed into relaxation, harmony and inner freedom. When you begin to observe your inner world your nervous system moves into a self-healing flow, unwinding energies and tensions. Your life energy, which has been frozen in a trauma, requires an enormous amount of energy, you need a resourceful, safe space to transform this into vitality through acknowledging and releasing what has remained frozen in you.
When this occurs the body and the nervous system relaxes, it becomes possible to process and move through layers of fear and frozen emotions and responses returning to a natural balance. I encourage people to say stop when they feel they are spiralling out of control. I ask them to imagine a full stop at the end of their sentence, at the end of an emotion, a response or a perception. When you are feeling vulnerable, or in painful emotional state, follow these steps
Breathe. Find a safe place, push the stop button and find some stillness. Breathe.
Breathe. Identify your feelings. Breathe.
Breathe. Take good care of yourself and find activities that are self-soothing. Breathe.
Breathe. Find a supportive and understanding person to talk about your thoughts, feeling and reactions. Breathe.
Breathe. Rest, sleep and eat well. Get outside and use your body in a way that feels good. Breathe.
Breathe. Attempt to resolve conflicts and identify what triggered a re-enactment and what fuelled the symptoms. Get professional help. Breathe.
Breathe. Think and speak positively. Breathe.
When you slow down, it is possible to explore your physical responses and your experiences in the here and now.
Healing Trauma and working with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, stress and anxiety is based on Peter Levine’s Somatic Experiencing Approach. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, more than 23 million Americans suffer from anxiety disorders many as a direct result of trauma. As researcher at the University of California at Berkeley, Peter Levine found that all animals, including humans, are born with a natural ability to rebound from these distressing situations.
‘Evolution has provided us with a way to deal with trauma the moment it happens—yet our cultural training overrides our body’s natural instinct about what to do. The result is that we often store the energy of trauma in the body leading to unexplained physical problems, emotional issues, and psychological blockages’.
Training with Babette Rothschild was illuminating on the impact of trauma on the body Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and the phenomenon of somatic memory. People who have experienced trauma hold an implicit memory of traumatic events in their brains and bodies. That memory is often expressed in the symptomatology of post traumatic stress disorder-nightmares, flashbacks, startle responses, and dissociative behaviours. In Healing Trauma I help clients to access what is happening inside and help them learn to restore their systems back into balance and health. From identifying how and where you store unresolved stress, trauma, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and anxiety, to become more aware of your body’s physiological responses to danger and practicing specific methods to free yourself from trauma, learning how to address unexplained symptoms at their source—your body—and return to balance and health a natural state in which you were meant to live.
I use a range of intuitive and energetic Mind/ Body systems blending Eastern and Western approaches and techniques that can really shift stress and anxiety states into vitality. Helping people to manage symptoms and move into healing and growth. Simply being in nature can calm the rush of panic in Mind, Body and spirit. By coming in contact with an experience using all five senses it can give expression to feelings which were unable to be processed by the body and mind. As the body releases blocked energy you are able to open up to innate wisdom of spontaneity, creativity, and authenticity in thinking and problem solving moving into balance and health. Para-theatre views the physical body as the embodiment of the subconscious mind, ‘the only way to release forces trapped inside the physical body are to unleash deep feelings, energies, and give vocal expression to what lies trapped inside the muscles.’Antero Alli
‘I took a walk in the woods and came out taller than the trees.’ Henry David Thoreau
How do you manage stress? I would love to hear your questions and thoughts in the comments!
Living from the Heart:
T 07855 781 210
Aisha Ali is a much sought after relationship specialist. She is known for her intuitive insight, she is very skilled at getting to the core of issues and helping individuals and couples transform unwanted repeated patterns. Her clients experience support clarity, awareness and a sense of peace, balance and accomplishment.