Guided Imagery and Meditation Blog | Health Journeys

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20 Jul

I have been experiencing anxiety and panic about my health, catastrophic thinking. I can’t seem to stop ruminating.

 I can’t seem to stop ruminating. Your anxiety/panic CD has been helpful. I’m wondering if you could recommend others that would help me get out of the catastrophic, ruminating thinking.

Thanks so much for doing these CD’s, and thank you for your help!

Rebecca

13 Jul

Why are we hearing breaking news about the health benefits of yoga and meditation? We already knew they were good for us…

11 Jul

Question:

“OK what is mindfulness training & where can I get some?!!!  Yesterday at work I had a very stressful day, and by afternoon, I noted some definite cognitive deterioration…. couldn't hold a thought in my head. Please advise.”

Danielle

11 Jul

Remember when the word “hypnosis” conjured up images of a stage Svengali snookering some hapless volunteer from the audience to walk like a duck and cluck like a chicken?

Well, according to a just-published University of Birmingham research analysis, hypnosis and hypnotherapy have come a long way from that perception. The investigators show most people are open to using it for medical or psychotherapeutic purposes.

05 Jul

Question:

BR,

I work with kids who are healing from burn trauma at a local children’s hospital burn center. Do you think imagery and relaxation could help with the itch problem in healing burn injury? The children do a great deal of damage scratching and complicate their recovery.

Christopher

03 Jul

During this week of the Fourth of July, I’m focused on the idea I grew up with of what is the classic American Hero. 

I was born during World War II, infused with an ideal of a certain post-war, iconic, American male. In the movies, he was best exemplified by Gary Cooper in High Noon and Gregory Peck in To Kill a Mockingbird - both won Oscars for Best Actor, by the way.

This hero figure was gallant, brave and principled, protecting the weak and doing what was right, even at great personal cost.

28 Jun

Question:

Dear Belleruth,

Thanks for making so many wonderful audio programs. I’m confused about the best way to use all the ones I want. I’m dealing with several different issues. Do I have to start with just one, or can I get all three of them and begin using them right away?

Thanks,

Danielle

26 Jun

June 27th is National Posttraumatic Stress Awareness Day, so I’m taking the occasion to point out a few things. 

The actual name for the day is “PTSD” Awareness Day, but I’m not using those initials, because I don’t think the “D” (for Disorder) belongs there. The experience of Posttraumatic Stress does not constitute a mental disorder, regardless of PTSD’s prominent listing in the DSM-V. (That’s the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual, which therapists use to assign diagnoses and file for insurance).  

PTS is a normal reaction to abnormal events.

It’s a body based neurophysiological and biochemical response to threat.

It’s an ancient, human, survival-driven, wired-in answer to danger, real or perceived – it makes no difference to the body.

Capacity for words shuts down and sheer instinct takes over. That’s so we can move and act faster, the better to save our lives.

Ugly images stay stuck in the brain and repeat, as fresh and contemporaneous as the day they first showed up. That’s because traumatic memories aren’t stored in the usual structures in the brain where normal memories are housed.

That’s why standard therapy or “the talking cure” doesn’t help as much as we once thought it could.  It’s like apples trying to talk to oranges.

Instead, techniques like guided imagery, EMDR, Healing Touch, Somatic Experiencing, Yoga Therapy, Emotional Freedom Technique and other sensory and body based approaches are far more effective and quick-acting. That’s apples talking to apples.

I tried to spell this out in my book, Invisible Heroes. So does Robert Scaer in The Body Bears the Burden. Peter Levine was early to the party with Waking the Tiger. Bessel van der Kolk came later with The Body Keeps the Score

Hopefully the DSM-VI will set the record straight and take out that D. Stay tuned!

All best,

br signature

Belleruth 

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20 Jun

Question:

I have yet to find a good guided visual imagery program for reducing uterine fibroids. I have more and more patients in my psychotherapy practice who are dealing with fibroids, wanting to do everything they can to reduce the fibroids and avoid surgery. (If they do need surgery, of course I immediately get them started on your CD for that!)

It would be enormously useful to have one of your guided visual imagery CDs for these women -- and as the baby boomers move toward and into menopause, there will certainly be more and more of them!

Thanks for all you have already produced, and always looking forward to more.

Marion

19 Jun

Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) is a short-term, behavioral therapy that helps people counter anxiety and their own limiting beliefs, in order to make positive changes. It requires no deep-dish psychodynamic insight into motivation and no delving into anguished family history – all it asks (more or less) is that you state a positive intention while tapping on acupoints.

Now, all that tapping can look pretty weird, but it seems to help a good slice of the population. And, because it’s so undemanding on a person’s time and cash reserves, it’s not a bad strategy to try first, before signing up for the more lengthy, pricey and complicated process of psychotherapy.

13 Jun

A man suffering from clinical depression and anxiety since the loss of his beloved wife two years ago, wonders if guided imagery can help him, along with the counseling he’s already getting. Here is his question and our answer:

Question:

I am taking EMDR with a counselor as part of grief treatment. I lost my beloved wife two years ago July. 

I have your excellent CD on cancer (I had a cancer scare myself, but am cancer-free, praise the Lord.)

What CDs or other materials do you recommend for grief?  I have suffered with clinical anxiety and depression because of my wife's death. Therapy has helped a lot, but I love guided imagery.

12 Jun

I just had a hip replacement - a surprisingly easy and comfortable surgery, as these things go. The staff had me walking the same day, and I was able to leave the hospital soon after, with only a mild ache in my leg – nothing a little Tylenol couldn’t handle, and, truth be told, I’d have been fine without the Tylenol, too.

(My physical therapist says she finds that about half the people who have this surgery find it a breeze. The other half are wired to experience significant pain. In terms of actual healing and recovery, however, it takes the same amount of time for both groups.) 

Nonetheless, my excellent surgeon discharged me from the hospital with 60 Oxycodone tablets (5 mg.), and 14 Morphine extended release tabs (15 mg.). That’s a lot of dope.