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Allergy and psychosomatic illness

The dictionary definition of the word psychosomatic is as follows:
A psychosomatic illness is physical illness or other condition caused or aggravated by a mental factor such as internal conflict or stress relating to the interaction of mind and body.

I thought I would write a little about how I stopped suffering any symptoms from an allergy problem that I have had for most of my life up until recently.

From a young age I have had an allergy to dogs. The symptoms were that if I touched or stroked a dog I would get itchy and if I rubbed my eyes or touched my skin then there would be a reaction.
Even if I didn't touch the dog, just being near it or in a house where there was a dog would give me asthma like symptoms and I would find my breathing getting restricted and labored. It wasn't pleasant and so I stayed away from dogs, and tried not to visit the home of any friends who had dogs. If I could not avoid going somewhere where there was a dog then I would take antihistamine tablets. The tablets would help a little but they only lessened the symptoms slightly, they didn't stop them by any means. When I was young I visited an allergy clinic but nothing much came from it in the way of solutions they just gave me a list of the things I had reacted to in their test.

So this was a very physical thing for me, I felt it physically and definitely didn't seem to me to be something just in the mind. However I am intrigued by what an allergy is and very simply put it is your bodies immune system reacting to something as if it was harmful when in fact it is not a problem for most people.
So to me I always thought of my allergy as something misfiring in me, something not working as it should. So by this thinking maybe it could be corrected and returned to proper functioning.
Over many years I had never found anything that worked apart from staying away from what made me feel ill and so most of the time I was fine and didn't worry about it.

Recently a colleague who is a counsellor and hypnotherapist asked me if she could practice some techniques with me which she wanted to get more experience using.

One of the techniques was 'Time Line Therapy' which simply put, works on memories and beliefs around key significant events in our lives.
I use "Time Line Therapy' a lot so was happy to let my colleague practice on me.

I just had to decide a problem or something that I wanted to work on. Over the years I have stopped smoking, stopped having sugar in tea and coffee and I now get regular exercise.
However I still had this allergy problem so said I would like to work on that, even though it seemed like pretty much a physical problem.

I did have a memory which had stayed with me so it must have been an intense event. Maybe it was connected to my allergy

When I was very young, I presume around 6 years of age I could remember going to visit some friends of my parents. When we got there, their dog which seemed huge to me, started barking at me.
We were in the hallway and I was backed into the corner with this dog barking and showing it's teeth, right in front of my face. I can remember being frightened but no one stepping forward to help or pull it back.
My parents friends just said "don't worry it won't bite you" or something similar and it seemed like ages before they eventually pulled the dog back.

So this was the memory that we worked on, reframing it now as an adult, knowing that I have nothing to fear and assuring my unconscious mind that I can be around dogs without threat.

So that was it, and to be honest I just did it to help my friend practice the technique and didn't expect that there would be much change. Mainly because this was a very physical problem and I had it for so long it had almost become part of my character.

Since then I can't really believe the change. I have been able to pet and stroke dogs and even looked after a friends dog at my home for 6 weeks while they had an operation and were recouperating.
I spent a week in the summer with friends who have two dogs without taking any antihistamine and I was fine, Yet the year before when I stayed with them, even though taking tablets every day I could hardly breath and had to spend most of the time sitting in the back garden or going out for long walks.

So as I say I still can't quite believe that these changes have taken place, but they have!

Free stop smoking app Uxbridge

I see a lot of people to help them make changes in their lives and I am always looking for new information that will help to make that extra difference. I worked with someone who came to see me last week to give up smoking and he told me about some free apps that are now available for your smart phone. He had the app loaded onto his phone so that after we had worked together and he had stopped smoking he had this extra information and encouragement on his phone which updates every day.

I had a look and they are a great resource.

You put in your give up date and the app gives you support, feedback and information about how your body is detoxing. If you are into tweeting you can also share encouragement with others that have given up. If you are thinking about quitting smoking then these apps are definitely worth having a look at. They are free to download and use and you can't say better than that.

Here are the links:

For Android
For Apple!/id483994930?mt=8

If you want some help giving up smoking then please call me and I would be happy to talk about how you can get there more easily than you may have thought possible.

Holiday Time

It’s Holiday time now and so a good time to enjoy a rest or get away for some sunshine. Holidays can be a time when we get to do some thinking, when we have the time to reflect on what we enjoy and maybe on the things we want to change.

If you have a fear of flying or a phobia then this may affect decisions about how or where you can travel, so you might be thinking about those things even before you take any time off.

A holiday can often give you the space and perspective to plan how you might like to live your life differently, like stopping smoking or cutting back on drinking.

If you have been thinking recently about getting some assistance to change things in your life then hypnotherapy may be the right path for you.

I talk to and see a lot of people at my Cognitive Hypnotherapy practice here in Uxbridge, West London, if there is something you would like to discuss why not give me a call.

Charles Dickens Therapy and Hypnosis

It’s 2012 and the 200th anniversary of the birth of Charles Dickens. So lots of programs about him on television and lots of events in London, where he lived and which featured in some of his most famous stories.

There is an exhibition on until 4th March at the British Library that details Dickens interest and use of what was called at the time Mesmerism. Mesmerism was the very early beginnings of what has today become known as Hypnosis or Hypnotherapy.

I was really interested to find out that in the 1850’s Dickens was part of the ‘Mesmeric mania’ that swept Britain and that he developed an interest in the ‘power of the human mind’. Dickens was taught how to Mesmerise and he treated his friends and family.

Dickens stories have such powerful characters and I have always thought that they were great insights into the human condition. A Christmas Carol for example where Scrooge lives a cold mean spirited life despite being a wealthy businessman. Is he is visited by three ghosts or is he haunted by the nightmares of his own conscience?

After reviewing his past and seeing a bleak vision of his future, Scrooge realises that he has the power now, to choose to live and celebrate life. Which is a great lesson from a master story teller and one of the champions of the power of imagination and the human mind.

Weight loss. Why counting calories is not good for you.

Last week there was a program on the radio about nutrition and the calorie counting of food. The break down of food to a basic energy count began in the 1920s. Since then it has been used as a guide to what a healthy amount of food intake is.

The calorie counting system gives calorie counts for the average person so that you can maintain or lose weight. The problem with this is that it only measures the amount of energy the food contains. It does not measure the nutritional quality of the food.

If you eat a thousand calories a day but the food you are eating is crisps and fizzy drinks then this is very different to someone eating a thousand calories of fruit, vegetables and fish.

The trouble with calorie counting is it can push you away from healthy foods like nuts, butter and cheese which are highly nutritious i.e. full of vitamins and minerals and essential fats but which have a relatively high calorie count. Towards diet drinks and small amounts of ‘treats’ in the mistaken belief that the less calories we have the better.

It is now believed that counting calories is a very poor guide to having a healthy diet and assisting weight loss.The main advise now given is ‘eat real food’ and forget about calories as this can be misleading. Also we know that going on restrictive diets can send the body into starvation mode where it tries to store more fat!

Eating a balanced diet and getting regular exercise is the best long term strategy. If you overeat for emotional reasons like being bored or to make yourself feel better, then you need to address the emotional reasons first.

If you feel that your eating habits have an emotional element and you would like to make changes then call me.

Hypnosis master class with Jeffrey Stephens Master Hypnotist

I get to work with a lot of interesting people. Not just people who come to have Hypnosis in my Cognitive Hypnotherapy Practice here in leafy Uxbridge West London. Not just people who need help to change, get rid of a habit or get over something. As part of my continuing training and interest in all things to do with Hypnosis I sometimes get to spend time with other therapists and trainers. Last weekend I attended a weekend workshop in Hammersmith West London.

The three day course was organised by Alan Whitton a Hypnotherapist from West Essex in the UK. On the Friday night as a bonus we had James Tripp from the UK teaching Hypnotic Phenomena from his perspective of Hypnosis without trance.


Then the weekend workshop was a master class from Jeffrey Stephens an American Master Hypnotist who has been practising and demonstrating Hypnosis since he was in his teens. Now doing more therapeutic changework and training, this was a rare chance to meet and work with him in this country.


Jeff is a guy with a great passion for what he does and has a contagious enthusiasm, which is energising to be around. His style is straightforward Power Hypnosis, commanding people to sleep and addressing their subconscious directly to make changes and to make them feel better.


That Power Hypnosis type of approach is very different to my background and yet there were many areas where what he was teaching and demonstrating really resonated with what I practice.


Jeff’s intent and concentration on the client was total. He emphasised again and again being there with them, in that moment, and not being distracted by his own thoughts.


I came away from the weekend with lots of new skills and also a good energy. Jeff’s therapy is all about feeling good and feeling that energy and that is a great thing to experience and to pass on.


Here is a video clip of Jeff demonstrating his direct Hypnosis skills with a very quick induction.

Looking for bad news or good news

Every morning I listen to the radio in the car and on Danny Wallace has recently taken over the morning show on Xfm. He has started a regular feature where they ask people to phone or text in with their good news stories. Most of the stories are silly and amusing whilst some are laugh out loud funny.

These aren't life changing stories of heroic proportions, just ordinary people finding the small wins in life. It makes me laugh and at the end of the journey I find myself more regularly with a smile on my face. 

In contrast to the global news which seems to be in a self perpetuating cycle of doom and gloom the good news section from Danny Wallace is a breath of fresh air.

I don't think we should bury our head in the sands but a constant barrage of depressing information about matters which we can have little impact individually is not helpful to me.

I choose to enjoy the funny things when I can find them, the little bits of good news that bring a smile to your face.

Music and Life by Alan Watts

I was talking with one of my clients this week about the things they wanted to achieve in their life. They said that they had seen an animation to a snippet of a talk by Alan Watts and had I heard of him?

Well I had and I read a book by him when I was on holiday years ago and it blew me away. I had never read anything like it before. It was called simply 'The Book' subtitled 'on the Taboo against knowing who you are'. I couldn't explain it all in a few sentences but it was about waking up to who we really are.

Alan Watts was a great original thinker. He takes complicated ideas of philosophy and religion from the east and west and distils them into understandable ideas.

Here is that short animation that we discussed.

The King's Speech - therapy in London

The King's Speech has won loads of awards so I guess I am a little late in getting round to praising it. I watched it last night at home on DVD and I can see now why so many people have found it a great film. Firstly the acting and choice of actors are superb and the script and London locations are brilliant. Because it depicts true events it has a resonance that you don't get in a fictional story.

Also (and probably because it is a true story) it gives a view of how therapy at it's best is an interaction between two people. It requires honesty and care and humour and insight. In fact it says a lot to me about the right ways to do things. I think a lot of British people have been put off therapy by the American view as depicted in Woody Alan films. I love Woody Alan but his take on therapy has a lot to answer for.

A great film and it's British, if you haven't seen it yet hire it, I'm sure you will enjoy it.

Here is the trailer, check it out by clicking below.


 A friend and colleague of mine, Lesley McCall had an article published in this weeks Guardian Weekend Magazine.

You can read the full article here:


The column is titled ‘What I’m really thinking’ and for this weeks column it’s her thoughts as a Cognitive Hypnotherapist.


She makes some observations at the end of the article:

I don’t wave a magic wand, but I often hear people say, “I wish I’d tried this years ago.”


She also goes on to say:
That’s something that I have come to notice over time. Plenty of people say there are things about themselves they want to change, but they have to be willing for results actually to happen.

So this is the crux of when people reach a tipping point which takes them from just thinking about something to actually taking some action to make it change.

If you have been thinking that there is an aspect of what you think or do that you want to change and you really want to find a way to make that happen, then you could find that Cognitive Hypnotherapy is for you. You can always give me a call if you are interested to find out more or to ask any questions. Telephone 01895 274 506.

Making decisions

I recently got round to reading a book called ‘The Dice Man’ by Luke Rinehart which was a best selling book in the 1970’s. It triggered a craze for “dice living” in which people make key decisions on the basis of throwing dice. Actually, I’m not sure that I remember it triggering a craze for “dice living” but the blurb about the book says it did!


Reading the book now it is full of dark humour, if a little dated, but at its core it is quite interesting. It’s adherents claim it makes them feel more alive as it introduces a greater element of the unpredictable into their existence, and often gives them an excuse to do things that they always wanted, without having to feel responsible for taking the decision.


The book takes the consequences to extremes for the sake of a fictional ride. I couldn’t help thinking though, that as all the options that are written down before the dice is thrown come from the mind of the ‘Dice Man’, so can’t really be viewed as random. Plus the very act of making a decision in this way is of their choosing so it follows, that it must be their responsibility.

What you should know about creativity and the mind

This is a talk about education from Sir Ken Robinson.

Please don't be put off by that sentence have a look at this video of him speaking. For a start he is funny and he has a great knack of presenting his subject in a way that you may not have thought about it before.

If you are interested in creativity and the mind then enjoy this talk.

Daphne Oram - pioneer in electronic music

I seem to keep finding out about events after they have happened recently. Last night  I missed an evening over in East London about the electronic music pioneer Daphne Oram. The event was last night at Café Oto (Ashwin Street, London E8.


You may not have heard of Daphne Oram but she worked at the BBC in the fifties and persuaded them to start the famous BBC Radiophonic Workshop (of Doctor Who theme tune fame).


Daphne left the BBC to start her own studio and work on one of the first sound synthesisers which was called the Oramics machine. Unlike the synths we now have which were mainly developed from Dr Moog’s experiments in America, the Oramics machine used visuals to produce sound.


What looks to me like squiggles or shorthand are drawn onto film which is passed over photo-electric cells and this information is converted into sound.


I only read about her recently and would have liked to have got along to evening to have heard and seen more. I hope someone will make a tv program about her soon.


Anyway it got me thinking about people that really immerse themselves in the things that they love and have a passion for.  Not following the crowd or just chasing money but just doing what interests them.


I know that I have a passion to find people who have produced interesting stuff so I will keep my eyes open more and hope to find out about these things before they have come and gone.

Hey, be good to yourself!

I see a lot of people all with different things that they want to change to bring them more peace of mind or happiness.

I always ask how would you like be without your problem?

When I ask them that question I usually get answers like “Well I wouldn’t feel so tense all the time” or I wouldn’t feel so stuck in a rut” or “I wouldn’t lack confidence”.

I then have to point out that they are still referring to their problem about being tense, stuck in a rut or lacking confidence. They haven’t told me how they would like to feel, they are telling me how they don’t want to feel.

Most people can’t see beyond their problem because that’s mainly what they are thinking about. It’s like if I say to you ‘don’t think of an elephant’ then you immediately have to make a picture of it in your head before you try not to think of it. It can be the same with problems, the more we fixate on them the less we can see the good stuff. Sometimes we just need to start looking for the good instead of the bad.

So how do you get to feel more relaxed, in flow or confident? . It’s easy to set ourselves lots of tasks and then suffer from guilt overload. Well how about making life more enjoyable not more difficult? Cut yourself some slack and be good to yourself. If you have a partner or a child, give them a hug, tell them you love them. If you’re on your own, give a friend a call or just take a walk when the sun is out. If you’re well-off take a holiday or a day trip somewhere, if not go into London and visit a free gallery or museum or just go window shopping or walk along the South Bank.

Do something nice for yourself, make yourself a cup of tea or coffee and put some music on or watch a great film. Do something you like, because we all need to love ourselves a bit more and doing more of what makes you happy and content is a good place to start. Be good to yourself.

Austin Osman Spare on the culture show - automatic drawing

I thought I would share something that interested me for a number of reasons. It was a piece on 'The Culture Show' on BBC2 in November 2010 which featured a little known artist called Austin Osman Spare. I've watched the program a number of times and I find some of his artwork amazing, especially his portraits.

Alan Moore the strange and bearded graphic novel artist is on the program and gives his account of Austin Spare. One of the things that was quite different about Austin Spare is that he also did automatic drawings. He would draw without lifting the pen off the paper and without consciously paying attention to the drawing process. Automatic drawing and writing lets thoughts and images flow directly from the unconscious without interruption from the conscious mind.

I found the music that accompanies this program very haunting and have since found out that it was by 'Talk Talk' off an album called 'Laughing Stock'. I loved 'Talk Talks' singles like 'It's my life' and 'Life's what you make it'. 'Laughing Stock' is a lot more experimental and looser than their hit singles but I found this use of minimalist sounds really stayed with me.

Here is the program, some of the artwork is nude studies, nothing offensive as it was shown on prime time tv but don't view this, if you think you may in any way, be offended.

Stop Smoking

So why can it feel it is so hard to stop smoking? It could perhaps be because they coat the cigarettes in sugar so you get a sugar kick as well? Some people can decide they have had enough and stop just like that. 

A lot of people are surprised at the emotional link to smoking, thinking it is just a physical addiction they are trying to overcome. The good news is that it can be quick and easy to help you let go of the emotional link to cigarette smoking, enabling you to give up more easily and become the non smoker that you want to be.

So if you have not tried hypnosis to help you quit smoking. When you are ready to give up, contact me and I can help you at my conveniently located practice in Uxbridge on the edge of West London.

Stress and Anxiety Workshop in November

On Saturday 6th of November I will be running a workshop to help anyone who is suffering from stress and Anxiety.
 The workshop will be at 'The Changing Room' in Bushey Hertfordshire and runs from 2pm to 6pm. I will be running these with Christine Black another Cognitive Hypnotherapist and the founder of 'The Changing Room'.

A workshop is a great way to learn some techniques and to discuss anything that may be affecting you in a relaxed environment. Why not give it a try?

Here is the link for 'The Changing Room' click on here and you can see some pictures of the venue.

Being Erica - therapy in West London

Being Erica is TV program from Canada being shown here in the UK on E4. It is a big hit in our house each episode is recorded and watched a number of times.

If you haven't seen it is a about a young woman called Erica Strange (brilliant surname).
The odd thing about the story is that Erica gets to jump back in time. With the help of her therapist the mysterious Dr. Tom and with a list of her life's greatest regrets, she finds herself launched back into her own past to make different choices this time around.

Every episode, Erica goes back to relive a regret from her past, in order to come back and make a positive change in her present.

Question: If you could go back in time to any point in your life, what point would that be? Why would you choose that moment, and what might you do differently?

Unfortunately we can't jump back in time and change events that have happened to us but we can change the way we relate and think about those memories. If you feel in need of some therapy for any area of your life and you are in the West London or surrounding area then please feel free to get in touch with me.

Take the plunge in Uxbridge West London

Most mornings I go to the new Hillingdon Sports and Leisure Complex, here in Uxbridge West London where I have my hypnotherapy practice (Uxbridge that is, not in the sports complex).

The Sport's centre is big bright and new, in that it has been open since March 2010. Well I say new, all the indoor facilities including a gym and olympic size pool are all newly built but there is a massive outdoor art deco pool formally called Uxbridge Lido. This had run into disrepair and was closed for a number of years, but they have completely brought it back to its former glory.

There is a small pool area outdoors for children and families which is heated but the main part of the outdoor pool is unheated. So although it looks beautiful, after using the gym I normally do a few laps of the indoor pool then a warm shower and off home. But the past few days have been so sunny that a few people seem to now be using the outdoor pool. Today was a particularly sunny morning, the sky and the pool were an amazing blue colour and with the sun glinting and reflecting off the water I had to give it a go.

As I climbed down the steps into the water I felt just how cold that unheated water was. Fully in the water it seemed so cold I couldn't get my breath. The lifeguard in his sunglasses sitting on his poolside perch smiled at me and said 'It's fine when you get swimming, it takes a minute to get used to it'. So I set off down the pool and of course your body soon adapts and with the sun on me, it felt wonderful to be swimming out in the open. I loved it although it had taken me a good few days of thinking about it before I took the plunge in that pool.

As I was swimming up and down this wonderful pool in the glorious sunshine I was thinking how it takes a while to get started on doing something new but once you have decided to 'take the plunge' you feel so much better for it you often wonder why you didn't do it sooner.

Seeing a Hypnotherapist or Life Coach is one of those things that people often think about for a good while. Feeling stuck but delaying 'taking the plunge' may be because we feel safe in a state that is familiar, even if we aren't enjoying it.

If you feel ready to take the plunge and change something for yourself then please feel free to phone me or email if you prefer.

What do you want from Life?

What do you want from life? (I remember that was a particularly good song from Los Angeles based band 'The Tubes')

It seems a straightforward question but when you ask people, they often tell you what they don't want rather than what they do want.

I don't want to be unhappy anymore.
I don't want to be stressed or getting panic attacks.
I don't want to be unable to sleep.

etc. etc.

And this is part of the problem, when we feel we are stuck or have a problem, that is all we can see. What we concentrate on we usually become more aware of, so it fills our minds and our problem is all we can see, or feel.

Just the simple act of looking for a positive outcome can set your mind on a different path.

When we think 'I want to be calm' rather than 'I wish I didn't feel so stressed' then we almost allow the brain a chance to start finding a solution rather than being caught in the loop of what you don't want.

So thinking what you do want, rather than what you don't, may be the first step towards getting more of what you really want from life, rather than more of what you don't.

Even in simple ways I have found this to be effective. For instance, if I feel tired during the day and I still have a lot to do rather than thinking 'I feel tired and drained' try saying to yourself 'I could do with more energy right now'. This sets a request up for more energy rather than concentrating on the feeling of being tired and drained.

Examining our thoughts and reframing them in this way can be very interesting. Self doubt and negative thoughts chip away at us if we let them. Being aware that we can decide how we think, gives us back control and opens up our world to more opportunity.

If you want help understanding
and overcoming perceived limiting beliefs that you may have then contact me for more information about my Uxbridge, West London practice and we can see how I can help you.

Sit up straight and feel better

When you were growing up your teacher or mother probably told you to sit up straight and make a good impression.  It turns out that sitting up straight can also improve how you feel about yourself according to a study in the October 09 issue of the European Journal of Social Psychology.  Researchers asked college students to rate how they felt about themselves.  Those that were told to sit up straight with their chests out gave themselves higher ratings than those instructed to slouch.  Showing again how your physiology can impact how you feel.  Stand confidently, feel confident.

Thoughts of Bruce Lee part 3

Here is the last part of the Bruce Lee interview.

Thoughts of Bruce Lee part 2

This is part 2 of the Bruce Lee interview.

Thoughts of Bruce Lee

There are quite a few interesting philosophies that come from the east but at times these can be a bit esoteric for those of us living in the west in these modern times. A lot of ideas have come through martial artists of various sorts. This is an interview with Bruce Lee from the seventies which is interesting because to me he was very practical in his outlook and managed to appeal to both an eastern and western audience.

Principles of success part 4

Be Aware

“The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes but in having new eyes” Marcel Proust.

Be aware of things on your journey. Open your senses to what you see, feel and hear. We often live life in our heads or worrying about things that haven’t happened yet. Take some time to be aware of what is going on inside and around you. Stop for a few minutes and focus on your breathing. When you are in your head thinking or worrying about things in the future or past you are not in the present moment and you will not be aware of yourself or things around you, important things on your journey. Your head can time travel, but your body can’t. Bringing your mind to your breathing brings your back to the present moment. Focus on your breathing, without controlling it. Just be aware of the pace and depth of each breath. If your mind wanders bring it back to your breathing without criticising or judging yourself. The more time you spend in the present moment the more you become aware of your inner desires, more aware of things around you…things that otherwise go un-noticed. Someone once said that there is no such thing as luck, luck is where preparation meets opportunity. Be more aware of the opportunities around you.

Action: Spend 10 minutes sitting quietly focusing on your breathing, whenever your mind wanders, bring it back without judging or criticising yourself. You may be surprised at what feelings and desires come in to your awareness. Doing this regularly can keep you more in the moment and will open your eyes to he things and opportunities around you that can help you move forward with your outcome.

Principles of success part 3

Have Behavioural Flexibility

“If you always do what you have done, you will always get what you got” Tad James

As human beings we value familiarity to some degree. However our survival depends on our ability to respond appropriately in unfamiliar situations. When we take action we may be stepping out of our comfort zone but you may soon realise you are just extending your comfort zone not stepping out of it. There may be times you want to do something but still feel afraid or nervous, but that’s OK. Take the inspired action with courage and you will be surprised how all the courage instantly becomes confidence.

Principles of success part 2

Take Action

“People who deliberate fully before they take a step will spend their lives on one leg” Anthony de Mello.

The more committed you are to take action the more your unconscious resources get activated. You may be surprised how things start to happen for you which can include bizarre co-coincidences. Also when you take action you learn, you learn far more quickly than thinking about things or theoretical exercises. Your unconscious mind learns automatically from experiences, action gives birth to experience.

“Follow your bliss and don’t be afraid, and the universe will open doors where there were only walls” Joseph Campbell

If you do not know where to start, you may be surprised at even the little things you can do to help you start making some progress with your outcome. Have you ever had a dinner paty, come down the morning after and looked at all the mess wondering where to start? Just starting with anything, one small step at a time, and you soon find yourself in the flow of clearing up and seeing order being regained and progress being made. One tip I have found useful is aim to make a thousand small steps towards the outcome throughout the year. Make a list of these. A thousand may sound a lot but it can be something as small as making a phone call or looking some (relevant!) information up on the internet. As the list grows you may notice your motivation and confidence growing with it.

Don’t wait for someone to do things for you, take action. ‘I will do something’ solves more problems and creates more opportunities than ‘something must be done’.

“Take you life in your own hands and what happens, a terrible thing, no-one to blame” Erica Jong

Action: Make a list of some of the things you can begin to do towards your outcome. Do one of them today.

Principles of success part 1

I was reading an article written by russell davis on success he was happy for it to be shared so I will share it with you here is part 1 more to follow.

1. Know your Outcome

What do you want? What do you want to happen rather than what you don’t want to happen? What do you want more of, not less. Knowing what you want gives your mind something to focus on. Our unconscious mind takes in about 2 million bits of information a second but only pushes between 5-9 to our conscious mind at any one time. It pushes in to our conscious mind what it thinks is important at the time based on our memories, life experience and beliefs/values. By articulating what we want lets our unconscious mind know what we want it to focus on, bringing it out in to the foreground. I know someone who used to be a racing driver. He once explained that when he was overtaking, particularly through a gap between two cars, he was 100% focused on the gap, not the position of the other cars. What we focus on we get more of. But what do you want? Often we don’t know, to help here are some great questions Jamie Smart, NLP trainer and life coach, often uses:

• What do you want? What would you love to create?
• How will you know you have got it? What will you see/feel/hear?
• What would you want if you knew you couldn’t fail?
• If there were a miracle tonight and when you woke up, everything was exactly as you want it to be, how would you know a miracle had occurred? What would you see, hear, feel, believe? What would you experience that let you know a miracle had occurred?
• What would you do if you knew you were going to be happy, secure, successful and loved no matter whether you got it or not?

Take some time to dream. Here’s a rule of thumb from Michael Neill, life coach to the stars; The number of reasons you have to do something is inversely proportional to how much you actually want to do it. In other words, if you have too many reasons to do something (‘should’, ‘needs’), chances are you don't really want to do it. But if you can’t think of a great reason to do something and you really want to 
or know to do it anyway, that's almost certainly an authentic intuitive prompting or heartfelt desire.

Action: Spend 30 minutes considering your response to the questions above. What do you want? Dream your dreams.

The Happiness Formula

The Happiness Formula
Mark Easton goes on a journey to understand what lasting happiness is. This BBC article looks at the newest research, examine the latest policy proposals, and meet the most cutting-edge thinkers from around the world.

Free book by Geoff Thompson download it

Geoff Thompson writes books on self-development. His 'warts and all' style of writing might be a little in your face for some people - but, he has non the less walked the walk.

Utterly compelling....Men’s Fitness magazine
A compelling insight....Arena magazine
Grabs you by the throat and doesn’t put you down....Front magazine

Apart from the insight he provides, it is his chronicling of his own journey from bullied schoolboy, to Martial Artist, to expert; from factory floor sweeper, to doorman, to BAFTA award winning writer that empowers and inspires.

Anyways, if you are at all curious about Geoff's Philosophy... you can now download his book "The Elephant & the Twig" for FREE. All you need to do is follow the link below.

To claim your FREE book follow the link below.

Five ways to wellbeing

Connect with the people around you – family, friends, colleagues and neighbors. Regard these people as the foundation of your life and spend time in developing these relationships. These connections will support and enrich you in your daily life.

Be active:
Get your body moving in any way – go for a walk or run, go cycle, dance, play a game, etc. Exercise makes one feel good and grants you vitality. Which exercise? It is important to find a physical activity that suits your level of mobility and fitness, and that it’s one you really enjoy.

Take notice:
Be curious and aware of the world around you and of what you are feeling. Keep an eye out for the beautiful, observe the unusual, and catch sight of the surprising. Notice the changing seasons. Relish every moment, no matter whether you are walking to work, eating, or talking to friends. Reflecting on your own experiences will help you realize what matters to you.

Keep learning:
Try something new or come back to an old interest, and challenge yourself with an aspiration that you will enjoy achieving – learn to play an instrument or to cook your favorite dishes. Sign up for a course that you are interested in, or take on a different responsibility at work. Learning new things is fun while boosting confidence.

Do something nice for a friend, or even a stranger. Thank someone who has done you a favor. Smile at others. Devote your time to community and voluntary work. Look out, as well as in. See yourself and your happiness. Linking to the wider community could be extremely rewarding and could help form bonding with the people around you.

Can your hobbies improve your memory

Researchers have identified that certain hobbies, such as knitting, are good for your memory performance and can actually delay the onset of dementia.  Others, like watching TV, can have the opposite effect! So watching East Enders or Big Brother could make you stupid!  But will you be happer knitting? See the article here.

Breathing for Relaxation

Have you ever been in a situation where anxiety, stress or nerves have got the better of you. How good would it be to be able to turn that feeling into a relaxing or calming feeling. It would be great wouldn’t it!!

Well have a go at this short exercise.

1) First of all sit or stand and place your hand on your belly.
2) Next begin to notice where you’re breathing from and how you feel. You might find that you’re breathing high up in your chest.
3) If so move the breathing down into your belly so that every time you inhale you can feel your tummy expand and every time you exhale your tummy contracts.
4) Breath like this for a few minutes and while you do notice how you feel different.

When we are nervous or anxious our breathing tends to be higher up in our chests and shallower which alerts the brain to switch into the flight or fight response. When we breath slower and deeper it is almost impossible to feel anxious because it sends a message to our brains that everything is fine and we are relaxed. So you see that even if you are in a situation that causes some anxiety, by belly breathing the brain says oh it can't be that bad because the breathing is relaxed.

Hypnotherapy and IBS

recent BBC news article talks about the benefits that hypnotherapy can bring to Irritable Bowel Syndrome sufferers.

4 out of 10 having symptoms completely stop and a further 5 out of 10 saying they felt they had the symptoms more under control and were much less troubled by them.

“It is pretty clear to me that it has an amazing effect”  Dr Valori, of Gloucestershire Royal Hospital.

If you suffer from IBS contact me and let's make you one of the 9/10 that get the benefits!

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