Guided Imagery and Meditation Blog | Health Journeys

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27 Mar

"Dear BR,

I've been enjoying reading about how guided imagery has been helping the military. Having experienced a lifetime of depression, I want to tell you that your Depression imagery has been the most valuable tool I have found. With that and medication, the last 7 years of my life have been my very best by far.

I am 58. In my case, life began at 50!

My husband and I are enjoying a wonderful life as retirees near Hilton Head, SC. One year ago, shortly after retirement, my husband was diagnosed with celiac disease, an auto-immune condition where one cannot tolerate gluten, which is in wheat, oats, barley, and rye.

With help from an excellent GI specialist, a mentor, and finding a newly organized support group in Savannah, we are managing just fine. I actually enjoy cooking more now with this challenge than I ever did before when we could both eat anything.

26 Mar

Researchers from Yale University School of Medicine performed a meta-analysis on the effectiveness of computerized CBT (cCBT) for anxiety disorders and the durability of treatment gains during follow-up.

They included randomized controlled trials assessing the efficacy of cCBT for non-OCD and non-PTSD anxiety disorders, resulting in 40 trials involving 2,648 participants.

Computerized CBT was compared to wait-list, in-person CBT, and Internet control. They also examined moderators of cCBT treatment gains over follow-up.

25 Mar

Happy Spring, Peeps! Yes, it's time again to think about Spring Break for the kids. Many families travel but if that isn't in the cards for you and your kids how do you handle break from school? Do you keep them on schedule, or let them relax and be free spirits for the week? Schedule a plethora of activities or nothing at all?

I was clicking my way around the internet trying to survey what other people did with their kids during a staycation Spring Break. I found a website; Tip Junkie with some really cute things to do with younger children  . Scavenger hunts, crafts, homemade bubbles, hop scotch, airplanes - oh my! Almost made me wish I had a younger child again.... Almost (hehehe).

24 Mar

Question:

Hi, I wrote to you a few years ago... about your healing trauma book and my book about fibro... I have been fine for 7 years but since late Oct. this year, I've been in a lot of pain... any suggestions would be really helpful... been a very difficult and stressful time for me and not sure what to do... the pain is very different than before... cannot lift my arms, my left leg and lower back hurt, mostly... thanks.

Sarah H.

23 Mar

Hello again.

I recently had a conversation with the father of a 16-year-old, high school sophomore. He told me his son Michael has been suffering from the after effects of a TBI (Traumatic Brain Injury) since a collision with another kid at pre-season football practice last August. It's been a slow, frustrating recovery for Michael, and there are repercussions on the whole family.

What's been hardest on him, the dad says, is the nonstop headaches, fatigue and mental confusion. Michael has trouble remembering things, focusing his attention, making even simple decisions and organizing his daily tasks. He's slower at everything, and of course that affects his confidence. And sometimes he gets so dizzy, he becomes nauseated – that's about as pleasant as being seasick.

20 Mar

Someone just sent us the link to this very encouraging review of our Help with Fertility imagery. We think this woman nails some of the key features BR was really trying to achieve on this audio... the main thing being that there are many ways to have a positive outcome to this challenge, all the way from having your own pregnancy, to seeing your baby growing in somebody else's belly, to adopting your child, to being at peace with not becoming a parent.

We've been hearing a lot about increased negative self-talk - this seems to be a natural by-product for many people undergoing IVF and other daunting, baby-making procedures.

19 Mar

Researchers from Duke University, Loma Linda University, the University of Maryland, University College in London and King Abdulaziz University in Saudi Arabia examined the relationships between religiosity, depressive symptoms, and positive emotions in people with major depression and chronic illness.

Investigators recruited 129 people who were at least somewhat religious/spiritual into a clinical trial to evaluate the effectiveness of religious vs. secular cognitive behavioral therapy. They used standard measures to assess at baseline the relationships between religious involvement and depressive symptoms, purpose in life, optimism, generosity, and gratefulness using standard measures.

18 Mar

Along the Road
by Robert Browning Hamilton

I walked a mile with Pleasure.
She chattered all the way.
But left me none the wiser
For all she had to say.
I walked a mile with Sorrow.
And ne'er a word said she,
But oh, the things I learned from her
When Sorrow walked with me!

Lately, we have been getting an unusually high number of calls from people who are grieving the loss of loved ones or choosing to send audio programs to others who are grieving. I am moved by the heartfelt sincerity in their voices, whether they are lost in grief and seeking something to help them, or bewildered about how to help a grief-stricken friend or relative.

17 Mar

Question:

Belleruth,

I tried using the guided meditation in the Healing Trauma CD and had a very uncomfortable, scary, physical experience, so I shut it off. My body went into a shut down mode when it heard the music, which was staccato-y and unlike the music I was used to hearing on some of your other CDs I've heard before, which were very relaxing.

You said early on this CD that everything on it had a purpose, so I figured there was a particular reason why you had this background music. Have you heard of this reaction before from others?
Is it set up to possibly evoke some underlying response or shift if needed for the individual? Does this mean I should not use this particular CD or go through the experience it is evoking if I feel up to it?

16 Mar

I need to check in with you on a hot issue that resurfaces for us now and then. Here it is: On many of our audios, there's a line toward the end of our affirmations segment that says, "I know I am held in the hands of God, and I am perfectly, utterly safe."

In the feedback we get, this is the line most often mentioned as especially comforting, meaningful and reassuring, and we get a lot of grateful thank you's for it – even from people who had terrible things happen to them when they were kids, who never felt safe growing up.

13 Mar

We get occasional requests for guided imagery for COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease) but don't yet have anything specifically targeted for this condition. We knew that anything that relaxed the listener would make symptoms better, but we were nonetheless gratified to read this post, where that assumption is validated:

Dear Health Journeys,

The [Asthma] affirmations work well for me, [who] suffers from COPD. I feel better and my breathing is more relaxed. I listen to this at night and when I wake up during the night. It has helped me to see my drugs as allies.

I even had a dream of being in a beautiful hall with molded ceiling. There were friends around me, and a friendly healthy, strong and vital guide put his arm on my shoulder to comfort me. I woke up realizing that that luxurious room was my lungs feeling healed. Thank you Belleruth!

With all my encouragements,

Michael from the UK

12 Mar

Researchers from the University of Calgary in Alberta, Canada looked at the impact of mindfulness-based cancer recovery (MBCR) training, as well as supportive-expressive group therapy, on telomere length in breast cancer survivors. Telomere length is associated with longevity and has been found to be a predictive element in breast cancer prognosis.

The MBCR focused on training in mindfulness meditation and gentle Hatha yoga, whereas SET focused on emotional expression and group support.

The primary outcome measure was relative telomere length, the telomere/single-copy gene ratio, assessed before and after each intervention. Secondary outcomes were self-reported mood and stress symptoms.