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PERSONAL GROWTH 

Monday 13th May 2013 - Just Pull Yourself Together…! 
I am working with a lady at the moment who is great fun. We had had a particularly emotional session and done some serious work and as she left I offered some support for the next week and than said ‘ alternatively of course…you could just pull yourself together !!!!’ We both laughed and she said that it would have been much cheaper if I had said that on day one – that all she needed was a good kick up the a*se.’ 
 
My work is underpinned by getting all the parts within us working together. We have to understand who and what the parts are and what their various intentions and purposes are. Once we open them up – with love and kindness and respect – we can being to understand them, update them and reconstruct them to serve us in a better way. We can understand why we feel the way we feel sometimes..... 
 
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Friday 03rd May 2013 - Stress v Stressors – Emotional Intelligence 
‘ Two wrongs don’t make a right……!’ 
 
I have had similar discussions with two people this week, both about Stress and Stressors. The first lady was telling me how she had a very stressful job. She had been in the job for 20 years and whilst she really enjoyed it and was good at it she felt she ‘ walked into work with my head held high, a long neck and a straight back……..but by the end of the day my neck feels squashed down and I’m walking smaller.’ She said her job was very stressful and had been so for twenty years. 
 
Now… ‘ that is a lot of time to be accepting and allowing stress……!’ 
 
People often look at me slightly sideways when I say that. Stress has become so much a part of our daily life that we unconsciously accept it – often people think that having a stressful week / day confirms they have worked hard all week. That it’s almost synonymous with success. 
 
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Week 2 of my Think Yourself Slim Treatment programme 

Thursdays 7-9pm £10 a week for 10 weeks 
 
Venue / Time : 7-9pm Lillingstone Lovell Village Hall near Akeley in Buckingham. 
 
The Four Golden Rules 
( Paul McKenna – I Can Make You Thin ) 
 
1. When you are hungry, eat. 
 
2. Eat what you want not what you think you should. 
 
3. Eat consciously and enjoy every mouthful. 
 
4. When you think you are full, stop eating. 
 
We had a great week this week. Lots of smiling faces and group support at the weigh in ( which is carried out in private ). The main thing that came out of this week was that people found they were thinking differently than before. They are ‘ putting their mind on a diet.’ When I say Diet I don’t mean the traditional ‘ denial / calorie counting / exercise etc etc ’ but rather looking at how we eat as in ‘ the diet of a tiger / the diet of primitive man ’ and so on. The Way We Eat and Why. 
 
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Sunday 7th April 2013 - How to Lose Weight and Keep It Off 

I’m running a weight management programme for the next ten weeks for a great group of people and will be using my blog to highlight certain aspects of what we are doing together. I intend to lose 6 lbs however that is not my main motivation since I am not overweight. Rather I intend not to drink any alcohol at all for ten weeks which will be an interesting experience. I do not find resisting food a problem at all – infact I enjoy the challenge of eating well. However that glass of wine at the end of the day is a completely different issue and it is this that I am going to explore. 
 
I will write a blog weekly and today’s focuses on the First Golden Rule of losing weight and keeping it off. 
 
Select now in your mind your favourite food. It can be chocolate or fruit since no food can be denied if you are truly to be successful in any weight loss programme and maintain that new weight afterwards easily. 
 
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Sunday 12th February 2013 - Failure v Control and Choice 

Well my month without alcohol was interrupted by a single day which I am not bothered about. I did not beat myself up afterwards – I just enjoyed the drink at the time and then enjoyed not drinking afterwards. 
 
I believe it is easier and more healthy to decide to drink if I want to as opposed to pledging to myself to give up alcohol for good. The latter sets me up for failure however the former gives me control and choice. I have noticed that when I stop doing something the interesting thing is the voices that I hear in my mind – which ones are moaning / which ones are pleased / which ones are tricky saboteurs….pretending to say one thing yet meaning another. I used to have a belief that in order to get through a lot of jobs in the evening ( which is the only time I will have a drink ) if I had a glass of wine it would give me the energy and drive to do the jobs. 
 
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Sunday 4th February 2013 - Echoes and Denial 

When I first discovered that there was an entirely different way of thinking out there it was like finding out that the biggest part of the iceberg is underneath – as if my life had been the tip of the iceberg without me realising it. A whole world opened up to me very quickly indeed. So it interests me when I find myself thinking or acting in a way that I used to act in. I call it Echoes from the past. Stuff that is floating around and sneaks back into awareness every now and again just to remind me of old coping strategies and so on. Which is all quite an elaborate excuse for the fact that I enjoyed a few drinks last night which means I have not completed my month off alcohol. I blame it on several things. I have lot 12lbs in weight – my friend and I are having a race. I’m sure one of the keys to successful weight loss and maintenance is to take out the Denial aspect. If your body believes you are denying it its most fundamental survival ingredient – ie food – then it will do its best........ 
 
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Friday 25th January 2013 - No caffeine or Alcohol Continued.... 

I have had a really nasty bug for the last week which has laid me low. I rarely get ill so this caught me off guard. I’m pleased to say however that I have not had a drink and have not missed it at all. In fact it has been a similar experience to giving up tea and coffee in that it is the social aspect off sharing a drink that was the most compelling as opposed to the alcohol. I’m glad I gave up coffee and tea and went through that experience as its now like a ‘repeat situation.’ So I’m drinking hot pineapple juice as a replacement to alcohol which is lovely although the waiter in the restaurant the other night looked very strangely at me and then brought me a normal pineapple juice. No problem. It actually amused me which I liked. It reminded me of when I lost all my weight after giving birth to my boy – I gave up carbs completely and spent my time in restaurants substituting roast potatoes with a separate side order. I don’t think my hubby liked it particularly as I think he felt I was making a fuss with waiters however I enjoyed the change and they certainly weren’t bothered. 
 
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Monday 14th January 2013 - No caffeine or Alcohol 

I decided last New Year to give up coffee and tea for a month. I had already given up caffeine however I noticed that even without the caffeine drinking coffee made me feel lethargic and interfered with my thinking. My intention was to give them both up for a month for three reasons 
1 ) because of how they made me feel 
2 ) to make me drink more water ( instead of coffee ) 
and 3 ) to understand what it feels like to go without something / to make a ‘change’ which is what most clients are doing in some way when we work together. 
 
The first few days were very interesting. I realised that whilst I did not miss the lethargic feeling it was surprising how I missed........... 
 
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Thursday 19th December 2012 - Beliefs, Perception and Miracles 

I was listening to something the other day and the question was asked ‘miracles ….or things that would have happened anyway….?’ This gave rise to a lot of thought in my mind. The Oxford English Dictionary defines a miracle as ‘ an extraordinary and welcome event attributed to divine agency / a remarkable and very welcome occurrence / an outstanding example, specimen or achievement. From the Latin ’miraculum’ object of wonder. 
I’m going to leave anyone reading this to ponder the answer for themselves in the hope they enjoy it as much as I did. What I will add is what my wonderful friend John Glanvill (www.johnglanvill.com) said as part of the discussion we had about it : 
 
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Wednesday 12th December 2012 - Change feelings and thoughts by changing Behaviours... 

There is a lot of wonderful discussion about whether we are thinking creatures that feel or feeling creatures that think. For me, we are feeling creatures that think. I believe we feel first because that is linked to our most basic instinct – our flight or fight response. We jump out of the way of an oncoming football at a match and then think about what could have happened afterwards and so on. However whether you believe we feel first and then think or vice versa it is agreed that both thoughts and feelings are conscious and unconscious. Some are completely automatic and some may be as result of learned behaviour and some are conscious. However because thoughts and feelings can be unconscious they can be difficult to change infact much clinical evidence supports the fact that often we think very consciously about something perhaps because we have attended a training course or an interesting workshop but despite our very best intentions we continue to do the complete opposite of what we intended to do. We think one thing and do another – often we are quite unaware of this and it is only other people that bring the fact to our attention. 
 
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Tuesday 27th November 2012 - Visualization – Re-set to Neutral 

Visualization is a process that has been taught by all the great teachers and avatars throughout the centuries. Visualization was adopted for the Apollo Space Program and instituted during the 1980’s and 90’s into the Olympic program. What is interesting is that when research scientists used bio feedback equipment and asked the athletes to first run their race ‘ in their mind’ and then to actually physically run their race the equipment detected that the muscles fired in the same sequence when they were running the race in their minds as when they were actually running the race. This is because the mind cannot distinguish whether you are really doing it or just practising. 
 
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Monday 19th November 2012 - Locus of Control : Internal v External 

I was having a conversation with a friend at the weekend and she asked what my thoughts were about ‘ Fate.’ She said she parked recently in a high street and as she got out of her car she dropped her keys down a drain. A man saw what had happened and came over to help – he plunged his arm heroically into the grime and water of the drain and retrieved her keys. They then chatted and it turned out that he knew her family. My friend said she felt it was fate that she dropped her keys. She said she believed our lives are mapped out and ‘when its your time to go, then it’s your time.’ I have a different point of view : I believe that the body responds to what you hold in mind ie. my friend dropped the keys down the drain because as she got out of her car she saw the drain and her mind ‘ ran the movie’ of ‘ if I drop my keys down the drain then I’ll be really stuck…what will I do…..how could I get them back…will the electronic key fob still work…’ and so on. 
 
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Friday 18th May 2012 

My first impression of what a hypnotherapist was related to me identifying a problem I wanted to be resolved and believing that they would hypnotise me, say some magic words, I would wake up and that would be the end of ‘ the problem.’ Of course, nothing is that simple. 
 
Or rather I add that it is ‘ that simple’ in that I knew simply what I wanted fixing, however just because something is simple does not mean its easy. So I made an appointment to see the hypnotherapist who proceeded to spend the entire first session – yes, despite my ascertion to him that ‘ he could do it in 1 session ‘( like I knew anything about hypnosis ! ) he managed to convince me to book three sessions. 
 
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Monday 28th May 2012 

Finally some sunshine. I was interested to notice how just putting shorts and a t shirt on made me feel. There was an instant association to holidays and relaxation. What is interesting is that years ago that would have caused me to look forward to a holiday and count the days until I was going away.  
Now life is very different. Every day is a holiday and I live very much in the Now. I enjoy and be with every moment as much as I can so as to give it my very best attention. This serves many purposes – firstly I have no more ‘ I could have / should have done this ‘ comments in my mind. Now I do the best I can as often as I can so I look back over weeks knowing I did the best I could at any one time with the information I had available at the time. 
 
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RELATIONSHIP WITH ALCOHOL 

Friday 9th September 2011 
This is my own Blog about my relationship with alcohol and moving to the next level. 
 
I have decided to start a blog to look at my relationship with alcohol. I never drink during the day and only drink after my boy is in bed and rarely with my meal. So I have a small window of opportunity to enjoy a glass of wine or whisky however I can enjoy quite a lot if I choose to in a small amount of time which I often regret the next morning.  
 
When I was working with John Glanvill – the therapist who inspired me to change my career and train to be a therapist – I realised that it was a maladaptive coping strategy and gave up drinking for over a month completely without any problem at all. At the end of the month I almost wanted to give it up completely I felt so well and the weekly shopping bill had reduced considerably. I control my drinking very well now and rarely drink at all except every now and again I have a drink and that triggers me to have another the following night. It is then hard to resist the next evening. 
 
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Friday 16th September 2011 
No alcohol for a week and I feel great. I much prefer not drinking at all. I feel clean and fresh and clear – I enjoy the clarity of mind. I feel like my mind is pure and uncluttered. I gave up caffeine completely in January and have not missed it at all for the same reason. It made me feel congested. I so much enjoy the mental absorbtion and processes of the work I do and my reading ( which is constant – there are so many brilliant books to read about personal growth and therapeutic tools and theories and hypnosis and so on ) and I’m quicker and sharper when I do not drink at all.  
 
I feel often when I am talking to clients especially on the phone at initial consultation phase that I am in that film Minority Report ( with Tom Cruise ). It’s as if I have hi tech board infront of me that can store information / open up new screens / access old files / link information however tenuous and that it is all going on so quickly. And it requires a lot of concentration and energy – the process is fascinating and I am amazed sometimes how I retrieve stuff that I read ages ago that suddenly becomes relevant. 
 
 
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Friday 29th September 2011 
I am still not missing drinking at all. I had one wobble last week on Saturday night as I came back from a brilliant day on the course I am attending and I was buzzing and fancied a drink.  
 
However I talked myself out of it -the Saboteur character in my head was telling me all kinds of very unhelpful things like ‘ you have had a great day / you DESERVE a drink / you have done so well, one won’t hurt and so on. I became so amused by the manipulations ‘it’ was using I forgot about drinking. Thanks for your advice but no thanks – you crafty little monkey. 
Sunday 16th October 2011 
I am pleased to say that I did not have a drink for the month as I promised myself however I did then have a few glasses of wine over the last week. Just after my boy went to bed and never before and I have to say that I did enjoy them. I guess I could only give up drinking completely if I truly wanted to and my experience to date is that actually I do enjoy a glass of wine or whiskey and I also enjoy the control of knowing I can have one when I choose to or not as the case may be. And I guess its a bit social as well. I am still curious and would like to give it up completely and am reading an unbelievable book at the moment which focusses on ‘the next level.’ The Now. The ability to ‘ be.’ And it is spurring me on to reach for whatever the next level is.  
 
I guess I still think I enjoy a glass of wine to relax – so until I move on from this thought process I’m a bit stuck. It’s not easy however I guess several years – since teenage – of enjoying a drink will not be easily replaced or traded or whatever it is it will be. So – I’m back on another month off from today and we’ll see where I am after reading the book. Its an interesting journey. I have to have a think about what ‘ relax ‘ means to me and endeavour to find it within myself as opposed to externally. I suspect this will be a profound breakthrough. The child becoming the adult. We’ll see where it goes. 
SELF ESTEEM 
STOP SMOKING 
STRESS & ANXIETY 
WEIGHT 
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