Guided Imagery and Meditation Blog | Health Journeys

You are here: Home Anxiety Anxiety, Panic, Phobias
21 May



First, I have to say I don't know where I'd be without your Panic Attacks CD - LOVE IT.   I have 3 quick questions for you..

1. Should I not meditate before/after I eat? I try to leave an hour in between the two.

2. I've read meditating twice a day is best, is there a certain length of time for each session that's best as well?

3. Have you ever heard of gagging as a symptom of stress/anxiety? (literally gagging, not just a choking feeling.. I've had this problem since January '11.)

Thank you so much,

Cora Lee

30 Apr

Researchers from the Puget Sound Health Care System in Seattle, Washington conducted a meta-analysis on whether cognitive behavioral therapy is more efficacious than medication for depressive disorders vs. anxiety disorders.
The investigators selected randomized controlled studies comparing CBT and pharmacotherapy, with or without placebo, in adults with major depressive or anxiety disorders.

23 Apr

Hi Belleruth,
Do you do custom-recordings (guided imagery, etc.)?

I have some teeth roots damaged in a bicycle accident a year ago and suffered panic attacks in the dentist chair, so the roots were then just left un-worked… Then and there I got temporary acrylic teeth installed, but in a partially broken status.
My panic story has been a whole other thing to deal with, appearing at different times in my life, always having to do with physical restrictions, as in the dentist’s chair.  I also purchased your panic attack recording.
At this point, I am looking for visual imagery meditations on my teeth roots in order to recover them naturally.
I made a very long story very short with respect to your time. As you can imagine, this is an extremely intense issue for me (in fact so big that it has taken me on a soul-path along with other major things happening in my life).
I will be deeply grateful for your reply.
Many thanks and blessings,

09 Apr

Researchers from the Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm, Sweden  investigated the efficacy of internet-based cognitive behavioral therapy (ICBT) with therapist support for obsessive compulsive disorder. CBT is widely regarded as an effective treatment for OCD, but access to CBT therapists is limited – thus the internet-based program as an intermediate solution.
This pilot was an open trial where 23 patients received a 15-week ICBT program with therapist support, consisting of psycho-education, cognitive restructuring and exposure with response prevention.

26 Mar

Dear Belleruth,

I am working with a woman who is afraid to close her eyes.  The very idea creates extreme anxiety, and therefore I cannot use meditation or guided imagery with her, even though both of us believe it could be very beneficial for her.  Obviously this has to do with her traumatized past, involving childhood sexual abuse.  Any suggestions?

Dr. Jim

30 Jan

We got this delightful message from Annie Umbricht MD, a general internist at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore.  What she says about how difficult it is to introduce healthy behavior change to patients is something we can all relate to.  

And the way she responded to her patient who had his heart set on a Xanax refill for his panic attacks, was nothing short of brilliant, if you ask us.

She writes:

Although not all my patients follow through and listen to the guided imagery CDs, those who do are really doing well. 

19 Dec

Researchers from the Pediatrics Department of Université Laval in Québec, Canada, reviewed the literature to assess the benefits of mind-body interventions during pregnancy for preventing or treating women's anxiety and in influencing perinatal outcomes.

They searched the Cochrane Pregnancy and Childbirth Group's Trials Register (30 November 2010), MEDLINE (1950 to 30 November 2010), EMBASE (1974 to 30 November 2010), the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM) (1 December 2010), (December 2010) and Current Controlled Trials (1 December 2010), along with reference lists of selected studies and contacting professionals and authors in the field.

11 Sep

Bellruth [sic] & Health Journeys,

I have been listening to your DVD [Ed. Note: she means CD] on OCD [Obsessive Compulsive Disorder] and I can finally feel relief. I’m not sure how it works but I know it does like nothing has before.

I do take Zoloft [Ed. Note: an SSRI or sustained serotonin reuptake inhibitor for depression] and Lorazepam [Ed Note: brand name is Ativan, a sedating, muscle- relaxing, anti-anxiety agent], but not till I started listening to your OCD dvd [sic] did my mind and outlook and thinking change. It is so nice. I can't thank you enough.


19 Jun

Researchers from the Institute of Psychiatry, University of Bologna in Italy performed a meta-analysis to see if Mindfulness-based Cognitive Therapy or MBCT – a meditation program based on integrating cognitive behavioral therapy with mindfulness-based stress reduction - had a positive impact on psychiatric conditions.

A literature search was undertaken using five electronic databases and references of retrieved articles. Main findings included the following:

29 May

Researchers from the University of Ottawa in Ontario, Canada investigated whether combining sertraline (Zoloft) and self-administered cognitive behavior therapy (SCBT) could improve treatment outcomes for panic disorder.
Two hundred fifty-one patients were randomized to 12 weeks of either a placebo drug, a placebo drug plus SCBT, sertraline alone or sertraline plus SCBT. Those who improved after 12 weeks of acute treatment then received treatment for an additional 12 weeks.

Outcome measures evaluate the core Panic Disorder symptoms (panic attacks, anticipatory anxiety, agoraphobic avoidance), dysfunctional ideas (fear of bodily sensations, agoraphobic ideas), disability, and clinical global impression of severity and improvement.