Dear Health Journeys,
I bought the Guided Meditations for Infertility in January. It got me through an intense cycle of fertility treatments! I listened every day to help calm my nerves and so that I could relax!! And I am happy to say that I am now 7 weeks pregnant with twins!!
This line of inquiry looks like it’s worth pursuing by other investigators – it’s a ready-made curriculum for stressed teens that seems to be effective, and it’s got a self-compassion component that most adolescents could use. I also suspect that programs like this could reduce bullying. Check it out!
In this pilot study, researchers from the University of North Carolina and the University of Tennessee explored the effects of a mindfulness training program on the emotional well-being of a community sample of 28 teens. They also looked at the impact of a self-compassion component to mindfulness practice.
Last week, we heard from Sheri who asked "Is there a meditation tape that can successfully be used by someone who just can't meditate? I have tried many different ways to meditate -TM, breathing, visualization - and none of these seems to work for me." She added "Perhaps I don't have the patience. I really don't know what it is. I just know that I would like to be able to meditate, if only for a few minutes. Any suggestions? I would appreciate your input."
Answer: (Continued from last week's Ask Belleruth)
Okay, Sheri. Here are some additional thoughts:
So, as Mother’s Day approaches, I’m reminiscing about a May morning many decades ago, when I was about 8 and my sister 11, and we forgot to get our mother a Mother’s Day present.
My mother went absolutely nuts – I mean, totally ballistic. Where normally, when we disappointed her, we might hear her mutter a few sarcastic words under her breath, this was an all-out rant that shredded us, calling us out for the selfish, ungrateful louts we were, and leaving us mortified and guilty - my brother, who was a blameless 5 or 6, escaped her ire. She then took to her room and slammed the door. She was probably crying.
My sister and I felt horrible. We quickly put our heads together, pooled our meager cash reserves, and walked to the drug store up the street (the only venue that was open on a Sunday). We found some low-end perfume we could afford. (We may have gotten a temporary loan from the clerk. It was a small town and people did things like that.)
Belleruth here. We got this story many years ago. Since the time it was written and posted, Terri passed away, leaving a hole in many a heart. She had a smile that could light up a room, and was a much-loved sweetheart to her partner, friends and community.
Terri had been a super-addicted smoker, who generously agreed to let me interview her when I was working on the guided imagery script for smoking cessation.
I knew her through friends, and had always seen her as kind of angelic. That’s why my jaw dropped and I snorted in disbelief when the first thing she told me was that she’d been smoking since she was ten.
Anyway, here is her story, as she once posted it years ago.
Brazilian researchers from Universidade Federal de São Paulo and Hospital Israelita Albert Einstein performed a small pilot study to see whether mindful awareness practices (MAP) could improve quality of life (QoL), mood and ability to concentrate in adults with ADHD.
Twenty-one ADHD patients and 8 controls without ADHD underwent 8 weekly MAP sessions; 22 similar patients and 9 controls did not undergo the intervention. Mood and quality of life (QoL) were assessed using validated questionnaires, and attention was evaluated using the Attentional Network Test (ANT) and the Conners Continuous Performance Test (CPT II), before and after the intervention.
Is there a meditation tape that can successfully be used by someone who just can't meditate? I have tried many different ways to meditate - TM, breathing, visualization - and none of these seems to work for me.
Perhaps I don't have the patience. I really don't know what it is. I just know that I would like to be able to meditate, if only for a few minutes. Any suggestions? I would appreciate your input.
This is such a great question!!! Do you know how many people ask this? I'm glad to have a chance to collect my thoughts for a decent answer.
Okay, so let me opine for a minute here...
Two of our new mindfulness-based meditations are ready. Mindful Meditation Mix, a sampler of mindful awareness exercises by three of us: yours truly, Traci Stein and Steve Kohn; and Mindfulness Meditations: Finding Peace & Perspective in the Present Moment, a super-effective program by Traci Stein, are ready in their download iterations.
And so is Traci’s extraordinary Self-Compassion Meditations to Release Self-Criticism and Foster Self-Kindness.
This is a note of thanks. I am a woman in my early 50s, experiencing a rough patch in my family. Just to give you the scope of what I deal with, my husband has early onset Parkinson’s. My youngest son has learning disabilities. He has been struggling with college courses, low self-esteem and depression. My mother suffers from moderate dementia – she is in assisted living and I know I will need to move her soon.
Total knee replacement surgery usually involves a painful recovery period, and many docs and nurses encourage their patients to try guided imagery to help with the discomfort – it can replace the use of opioids to some degree (and sometimes, for some people, quite a lot), and many patients prefer it, because they don’t like feeling “dopey” if they can help it.
I honestly didn’t think we still needed to establish that guided imagery was an acceptable intervention to orthopedic surgery patients – that point has been made time after time. But, hey, nobody asked me! And our neighbors down the road at Summa and Kent State thought otherwise and checked it out for themselves.
We got this question from a savvy health care professional, asking for her friend, whose son was/is in a coma ever since suffering a traumatic motor cycle accident.
We know that many people in comas actually do hear what’s going on in the room – we know this because they’ll recount chapter and verse of what was said, after emerging from their coma state. So, this is a wonderful question to ask. More and more people understand that playing healing audios at this time can be a very good idea.
Okay, so I’ve been told that April is Stress Awareness Month. Hah! I could ask what month isn’t Stress Awareness Month. But I won’t.
Instead, I’ll offer three simple, everyday things we all can do to manage our stress and take better care of ourselves.