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A program update for your operating system is available.
Where are those happy days, they seem so hard to find?
Do you feel stuck, or need to control your environment and people, you might find yourself engaged in competitive battles, needing to feel better than, entitled, arrogant, or feeling resentful.
When you see the world as moving parts to be manipulated and accumulated to have more than others, your SOS might be up for repair.
If you are running on competition to achieve superiority. Struggling to earn a sense of worthiness. Denying authentic emotion. Crafting a performance of self. Manipulating and controlling circumstances. Attacking those who seem to threaten your safety. Defending yourself, assigning blame and avoiding personal responsibility. Seeking endless possession and consumption to fill the emptiness. Fear, perfectionism, attachment, obsession, comparisons, judgment, and chasing the arrival of happiness, your SOS needs a tune up.
Perhaps your operating system from the past is unsuited for the challenges of the future because it is based on a faulty premise of separation. Based on fear which is a response to the illusion of being separate from Love. Fighting for limited resources
This operating system has become so efficient, it has produced a world that is consuming itself. We move faster, try harder, struggle more in an attempt to outrun a distorted culture of personal and global imbalance. The result is exhaustion, depression, disappointment and shame and trying to convince ourselves to be satisfied with what we have.
‘A crust eaten in peace is better than a banquet partaken in anxiety’. – Aesop
An obstacles to spiritual growth and happiness is a tendency to hold on to old habits and identifications.
Emotions that might appear rational – such as feeling righteous, or depressed about a catastrophe your life – stands exposed as the result ofirrational thinking.
The result of this thinking will tune you into a frequency of scarcity and limitation. You end up manifesting more of the same. Your experiences of reality will reflect this back to you.
The universe is perfect – it does not take sides. It listens to the repetitive stories you tell yourself and serves it right back you to in a tangible forms you cannot possibly miss.
If you can manage to wake yourself up by focusing on being grateful for every experience, every failure, success, breath, smile, heartache, everything becomes infused with gratitude and comes alive tenfold.
Gratitude sparks a life of aliveness, creativity, joy, wonder, compassion, empathy and love.
Thank You is the magic key to a well- oiled Spiritual Operating System.
Bless your wounded self that was taught to believe there is not enough, that you might not be worthy.
Bless your ambitions to pursue the best version of yourself. Bless your shadow, you may not always want to admit you have hiding in the dark places in your heart.
Bless your need to love and be loved, to make a difference , bless everything and be grateful for everything . You will stop fighting and all of a sudden begin to know the kind of curiosity about life that leads to miracles.
Everything becomes affected — your thoughts, actions, interpretations, and life circumstances. It’s upgrading to a better, happier you .
Happiness inspires you to interpret and respond differently to various experiences in your life. When you allow these transformations to happen.
Living from the Heart is way of life that operates on a System of consciousness
Everything in the universe is alive, conscious and wondrous, you can align yourself and your life with a higher truth of oneness. You can step into the field of connectivity and access resources that have been previously out of reach.
“The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen nor even touched, but just felt in the heart.” Helen Keller
The intelligence of the Heart, can be described as the flow of awareness, understanding, and intuition you experience when your mind and emotions are aligned.
When you live from your heart, you feel at peace, at ease, and in control of yourself because of a deep inner knowing. You take actions with love.
You learn how to care for yourself and love yourself. You relax because you know that everything is going to be alright. Living from the heart brings balance.
When the heart is in control, your body finds good health and exists like a well-oiled machine instead of a broken-down car.
You might be so used to letting your head be in charge of your life, when you start reacting with your heart instead, it feels like a miracle, like a whole new existence…
…and it is! The heart is the centre of your body universe and the centre of your feelings.
Your head is at the edge of your body. You cannot balance when you are living from there. Your head is not grounded in the reality of your body.
Let your heart be the centre and watch your life transform.
When you compartmentalise your life and forget what matters most, you tend to listen to those critical voices in your head… “I’m not worthy” “I can’t” and “I tried, ”it’s not fair” nonsense and suddenly you are less than you could be.
SOS Retreat with Living from The Heart
Will help know who you are, what makes you happy, your strengths and weaknesses, what makes you tick, understanding that while you are not perfect, you can the best version of yourself.
You will be encouraged to: Live truthfully, authentically, and honestly.
Cultivate and nurture what is of value in your life, not from your head, where logic rules, but from your heart, where you can feel what is right and real for you.
When you Live from The Heart, chances are things are going to be just fine
The evening retreat will introduce you some practices to manifest your creativity and potential through living from the heart .
Sign up for SOS Mondays here and the Retreat in January 2020
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.
Your heart carries a unique vibration it has a unique energy field and consciousness. Connecting with your heart energy is the most powerful tool you have for creating healthy relationships, balance, health, love and peace in your life, your heart has a consciousness. Your heart is a very powerful organ.
Listen not just with your ears, but with your heart, Listen with your essence – with every sense of your being.
When the inner waters of your mind are completely calm, can you be truly in sync with nature and your authentic self, a true union with the divine.
‘You must be shapeless, formless, like water. When you pour water in a cup, it becomes the cup. When you pour water in a bottle, it becomes the bottle. When you pour water in a teapot, it becomes the teapot. Water can drip and it can crash. Become like water my friend’. Bruce Lee
“Everything in Life is Vibration” Albert Einstein
Every vibration produces a corresponding geometric form. Your Thoughts and Emotions create your Vibration and circumstances in your life, including Illness. Words are vibrations, which can Perpetuate or Heal Past Experiences.
Prayer and mantras are vibrations that carry positive healing energy.
The sound Om encompasses all words and sounds in human languages. Om is the cosmic sound of creation, the vibration of the universe, its energetic frequency connects unites everything.
Cultural, values and beliefs are encoded into the collective unconscious through language, symbols and words.
Beliefs can be held collectively in groups, families or nations. These messages are carried generationally, when unexamined and unchallenged they can create suffering for yourself and others. Trauma in the same way can be passed over generations. Trauma can take many shapes and forms. Trauma can be experienced physically, mentally, emotionally and beyond. Trauma can create obstacles to finding peace within yourself and the world.
Healing Trauma is an important focus of Living from The Heart which integrates Energy, Mind/ Body, Meditation and Psychotherapy. Unhealed trauma prevents people and groups from raising their vibration. Energy healing and Emotional clearing, helps people who are stuck in repetitive life circumstances and relationships. Emotions are energy, they carry a vibration also.
Quantum physics and the law of nature states everything has a vibration, thoughts are vibrations of energy, these vibrations influence your perception. Everything that manifests itself in your life is there because it matches the vibration from your thoughts.
When you become conscious of your thoughts as being vibrations of energy you begin to understand the powerful influence that each thought has and you connect with the power of intention.
John Lennon was encouraging the world to use the power of thought and intention to be conscious of your imagination and its potential, to create Peace beckoning the listener to imagine a world at peace without the barriers of borders or the divisions, to imagine humanity unattached to material possessions.The imagination, John Lennon was telling us, is the most powerful tool we have. Use it.
Every individual has potential, and is capable of influencing others, creating a ripple effect which can change society. If you approach the world as violent, self-gratifying or inconsiderate, what reactions will you generate? This is a time to be conscious of your actions and attitudes and their consequences.
We can use the power of collective consciousness through visualisation, prayer, mantra and meditation to improve the world.
What if everyone focussed their attention on visualising a peaceful world, characterised by nonviolence and harmonious relationships?
Your thoughts and feelings make ripples. Every action, thought and feeling have vibrations in a sea of energy, affecting everyone forever changing the composition of the whole universe, however small that change is. Change starts with you. Become strong so that nothing can disturb your peace of mind.
Join me for a monthly Healing the Heart Meditation virtual event attend from any where in the world.
Please sign up here to be added to this free monthly group all you need to do is turn up and tune in.
Details will be emailed to you.
Imagine the power of your thoughts.
“What you may fail to see inside is a result of how you choose to process everything and everyone in your world. You project onto the world what you see inside, and you fail to project into the world what you fail to see inside. If you knew that you were an expression of the universal spirit of intention, that’s what you’d see. You’d raise your energy level beyond any possibility of encumbrances to your connection to the power of intention. It is only discord acting within your own feelings that will ever deprive you of every good thing that life holds for you! If you understand this simple observation, you’ll curb interferences to intention.” Wayne Dyer ‘The Power of Intention
Every being, a cell, plant, animal or human, lives by vibrating; by expanding and contracting taking in the new and letting go of the old. Your mind, too, vibrates, alternating between expanding to receive new ideas and contracting to get rid of the old.
Your Heart beats a rhythm of giving and receiving.
The nerves and arteries in your body contract and expand, to circulating blood, carrying nutrients to supply cells and eliminate toxins in the same way that the air (Chi or Prana) is carried to and from the cells.
Your body is constantly vibrating contracting and expanding, your stomach to digest and your bowels to eliminate.
The vibration in the cells of trees and plants allows the sap to rise, flow and feeds trees and plants.
When parts of your body become stressed or dis-eased, they are no longer vibrating at their optimal resonant frequency. To recalibrate your frequency, you need to understand how lower and higher vibrations affect your energy and health by taking care of your internal and external environments.
Your thoughts and feelings, and the mental and emotional vibrations that emanate from you, create the atmosphere around you. People can sense this atmosphere and are affected by it. This atmosphere also affects their feelings toward you. Please visit Living from The Heart’s resources for raising your consciousness.
Become conscious of the foods you eat. Pay attention to how you feel after eating something.
Become conscious of the music you listen to. What messages does it give you?
Become conscious of your home environment. Is it a peaceful oasis?
Become conscious of the vibration levels of your acquaintances, friends, and extended family.
Become conscious of practicing random acts of kindness and in return expect nothing. How does this affect you?
Become conscious of your mind/ body find ways to raise your vibration through meditation, breath work, Chi Kung is a wonderful way to raise your vibration as is a regular Yoga practice.
Become conscious of going to sleep with a grateful, open heart, it is a powerful healing practice.
Love is a natural state of consciousness. Love is at your very core. Love shines a light on your uniqueness. In the spontaneity of love, boundaries disappear. When love appears, separateness disappears.
OM Shanti Shanti Shanti
I would love to hear your thoughts, experiences and comments!
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!
A clients’ view of therapy. Whether we know it or not, social exchange is right at the heart of our human concerns. As social creatures, is there more to life than enriching give and take and fulfilling relationships? If we have a rapport with others and with ourselves that is loving and supportive, we feel nourished and alive. If our connections are ailing, we may suffer profoundly as a result. In this era, specific help is available for improving the way we interact with others. By working with skilled facilitators we can reap the rewards of shift made to our understanding and our behaviour, regarding ourselves and beyond. If you think of the many kinds of human relationship and, in relation to them, the many more types of personal difficulties experienced, you can sense the complexity of problems that therapists, worldwide, seek to address. Regardless of differences in symptoms, a critical part of healing relationship predicaments is coming to acknowledge that, as adults, we are now personally responsible for the quality of exchanges in our lives. This fact is both hard to swallow and empowering. A therapist is someone who helps us realise that we can effect change and how we can begin to promote healing. This weekend I attended a two-day workshop created and facilitated by therapist Aisha Ali. Under the banner of her healing project, Living from The Heart, Aisha offers a dynamic and comfortable space to engage with personal hitches we may experience in our relationships. Under her safe intervention we strategically cut to the chase of difficulties and take a driving seat in moving through obstacles. Aisha Ali runs a variety of weekend workshops to assist in making positive transformations in life. The one I attended focused on our own ‘shadow’ self and how that impacts our lives in an everyday way. In the group, there were seven people, plus Aisha. The weekend was held in a room that was enclosing, private and conducive to opening up to the nitty-gritty of honest therapeutic work. I didn’t know anything about the shadow self before we began. I entered the weekend with little clue as to what the work would entail and what scale of effect the weekend might have on me. Aisha led us forward into group activities that rapidly brought us to connect truthfully with ourselves. Using a combination of physical movements we tapped into our physical and energetic body, which is a resource of wisdom, honesty and insight. Through group exercises we also connected with each other in a way that was unself-conscious and supportive to our individual processes. Though we were a group, the issues we brought forward were dealt with in a very personal manner. Without any judgement the obstacles that confronted us were accepted and treated with respect. This level of trust was testimony to the atmosphere of safety and openness generated for the occasion. Though we were delving into our innermost selves, nothing about the facilitation felt jarring, abrupt or superfluous. After the exercises it was remarkable how much more relaxed, alert and focused we all were in preparation for the explorations. There was a very carefully selected range of music that powerfully aided the aims of the weekend. I observed, with some amazement, extensive ground being covered in a short period of time. In fact, I hadn’t anticipated how much unfolding could occur in one single weekend. I observed that under the right conditions, shift happens quite dramatically. The process looking at our shadow selves was a journey we each undertook and what is important is that the workshop was suitable for everyone. It was made clear that each person only delved as deep and as far as they were individually ready and comfortable to do. This is not to say that the process was unchallenging. Through attentive guidance, the right degree of enquiry and discovery was set before us, and the accompanying willing to face this was encouraged. I believe that the proof of a workshop is in the pudding. Having been stimulated in various ways to perceive and to begin to integrate my shadow self I felt an enthusiasm for this process that left me a convert to ‘shadow work’. I noticed that I went out into the world with such a fortified confidence that I marvelled at my own social relaxedness. There is a power to group-work that reaches parts that one-on-one therapy seems not to do. The reflections and the difficulties that others shared were enormously helpful and accelerated my understanding of my own behaviours. There was something mechanical to the weekend that began to fix problems in a rudimentary way. I found the comments of the people who shared this time with me uncanny in their accuracy and pertinence. Though it was a group aimed at helping the individual, it felt clear that the insights discovered, and the shift observed, was a collective group-experience. I heartily recommend Living From The Heart workshops to anyone wishing to improve the quality of their relationships with themselves and others in a down to earth and honest way. A clients’ point view of therapy Participant November 2012
“For me, trees have always been the most penetrating preachers. I revere them when they live in tribes and families, in forests and groves. And even more I revere them when they stand alone. They are like lonely persons. Not like hermits who have stolen away out of some weakness, but like great, solitary men, like Beethoven and Nietzsche. In their highest boughs the world rustles, their roots rest in infinity; but they do not lose themselves there, they struggle with all the force of their lives for one thing only: to fulfil themselves according to their own laws, to build up their own form, to represent themselves. Nothing is holier, nothing is more exemplary than a beautiful, strong tree.
When a tree is cut down and reveals its naked death-wound to the sun, one can read its whole history in the luminous, inscribed disk of its trunk: in the rings of its years, its scars, all the struggle, all the suffering, all the sickness, all the happiness and prosperity stand truly written, the narrow years and the luxurious years, the attacks withstood, the storms endured. And every young farmboy knows that the hardest and noblest wood has the narrowest rings, that high on the mountains and in continuing danger the most indestructible, the strongest, the ideal trees grow.
Trees are sanctuaries. Whoever knows how to speak to them, whoever knows how to listen to them, can learn the truth. They do not preach learning and precepts, they preach, undeterred by particulars, the ancient law of life.
A tree says: A kernel is hidden in me, a spark, a thought, I am life from eternal life. The attempt and the risk that the eternal mother took with me is unique, unique the form and veins of my skin, unique the smallest play of leaves in my branches and the smallest scar on my bark. I was made to form and reveal the eternal in my smallest special detail.
A tree says: My strength is trust. I know nothing about my fathers, I know nothing about the thousand children that every year spring out of me. I live out the secret of my seed to the very end, and I care for nothing else. I trust that God is in me. I trust that my labor is holy. Out of this trust I live.
When we are stricken and cannot bear our lives any longer, then a tree has something to say to us: Be still! Be still! Look at me! Life is not easy, life is not difficult. Those are childish thoughts. Let God speak within you, and your thoughts will grow silent. You are anxious because your path leads away from mother and home. But every step and every day lead you back again to the mother. Home is neither here nor there. Home is within you, or home is nowhere at all.
A longing to wander tears my heart when I hear trees rustling in the wind at evening. If one listens to them silently for a long time, this longing reveals its kernel, its meaning. It is not so much a matter of escaping from one’s suffering, though it may seem to be so. It is a longing for home, for a memory of the mother, for new metaphors for life. It leads home. Every path leads homeward, every step is birth, every step is death, every grave is mother.
So the tree rustles in the evening, when we stand uneasy before our own childish thoughts: Trees have long thoughts, long-breathing and restful, just as they have longer lives than ours. They are wiser than we are, as long as we do not listen to them. But when we have learned how to listen to trees, then the brevity and the quickness and the childlike hastiness of our thoughts achieve an incomparable joy. Whoever has learned how to listen to trees no longer wants to be a tree. He wants to be nothing except what he is. That is home. That is happiness.”
Living from the Heart:
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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.