Guided Imagery and Meditation Blog | Health Journeys

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22 Mar

Therese Borchard has made some terrific Youtube videos for her blog,

. And I love what she has to say about jealousy!   


If you enjoy this video, check out the others on humor, anxiety and letting go that appear along the right side of the page. 

22 Feb

Researchers from the Integrative Medicine Program at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons gathered preliminary information regarding the feasibility of implementing a brief meditation-based stress management (MBSM) program for patients with CHD, and those at high risk for CHD, at a major metropolitan hospital that serves a predominately non-local patient population. The secondary aim of the study was to see if such an intervention could reduce depression, as well as perceived stress, anxiety, and hostility, while improving general health scores.

18 Jan

We thought, given the terrible situation in Haiti, it might be useful to post the results of this classic study of survivors of the great Turkish earthquake of 1999, which points to what makes survivors more vulnerable to PTSD.  Subsequent surveys from China, Japan, Italy, El Salvador and Iceland support these findings. , Additional factors appear to be dislocation, subsequent financial difficulties, disruption of social networks, injury, the intensity of fear and/or presence of dissociation at the time of the trauma. Loss of family and friends appear to be more associated with depression rather than posttraumatic stress.  Difficulties appear to be fairly longstanding, according to most of these surveys.

Researchers from King's College at the University of London in the UK examined the incidence of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and depression in 586 earthquake survivors living in prefabricated housing, an average of 20 months after the 1999 Marmara earthquake in Turkey. 

21 Dec

Dear Belleruth,

I have been listening to the Guided Imagery CD, Combat Depression, for a month now, everyday.  I have gotten very emotional during the part where a being enters your thoughts and touches you in a deep spiritual way.  I cry, sob, tense up, get really emotional and then the CD  (after a few minutes) has the being leave saying that you can call on him/her at any time, it is YOU that come and go, and suddenly you feel better for this...... Meanwhile I feel like crap - I don't feel better - I am now an emotional wreck.  What am I doing wrong or what can I do to suddenly feel better for doing this?  Please help.


30 Nov

Investigators from the Coimbra Nursing School in Coimbra, Portugal and the University of Akron’s College of Nursing reported on the efficacy of a guided imagery intervention for decreasing depression, anxiety, and stress and increasing comfort in psychiatric inpatients with depressive disorders.

A quasi-experimental design sampled 60 short-term hospitalized patients suffering from depression, selected consecutively. The experimental group listened to a guided imagery compact disk once a day for 10 days.

16 Nov

Dear Belleruth,

I have a question about your affirmations.  I have been listening to the Anger & Forgiveness affirmations. This CD (and others) includes the affirmation that "I can avoid re-injuring by myself with repeated visits to past wounds."

Yet, doesn't it sometimes make sense, to examine the past in order to overcome it? What is the difference between "repeated visits to past wounds" and confronting past pain in a therapeutic context?  Please clarify this issue for me as I find it somewhat confusing.

Thank you.

09 Nov

Australia, with its vast distances between urban centers and medical help, has always been a world leader in developing mental health services over the internet, and do a tremendous amount of research in this area.  

So it’s no surprise to see that most recently, investigators from St Vincent's Hospital in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, ran a study with 45 depressed subjects, randomly assigning them to either an internet-based, clinician-assisted, computerized, cognitive behavioral treatment (CaCCBT) program for depression (called the Sadness Programme) or to a waitlist control group.

In the Sadness Programme, participants completed six online lessons, weekly homework assignments, receive weekly email contact from a clinical psychologist, and contribute to a moderated online discussion forum with other participants.

02 Nov

Researchers from the Department of Psychology at the University of Vermont in Burlington looked at the recurrence of SAD (seasonal affective disorder or depression) in the fall/winter, one year after receiving cognitive behavioral treatment.

The investigators had previously developed a group cognitive-behavioral therapy approach (CBT) specifically targeted for SAD and tested its efficacy in 2 pilot studies that compared outcomes with light therapy.

This study examines impact during the subsequent winter season (approximately 1 year after acute treatment), following participants randomized to CBT, light therapy, and a combination of both treatments.  (N=69).

11 Oct

I'm proud to introduce performing artist, Vietnam vet and awesome guy "Big Mike,"who sent us a beautiful card (with some hilarious elements) last week.  He’s officially disabled, but earns his keep playing the 12-string guitar and auto-harp.  Included in the envelope was this wonderful picture of him performing, along with his bright orange business card, and a sticker that read, “I do the handicapped shuffle when I’ve got the disability blues”.

06 Sep

Over the past 9 years I’ve been through the mill.  I’ve suffered 3 miscarriages, then had 4 years of infertility, and three IVF (in vitro fertilization) treatments.  I’ve watched friends and relatives get pregnant, filled with envy, anger, grief and discouragement.  My mind filled up with negative, sarcastic, disparaging self-talk.

I knew I needed to do something to combat the negative internal messages.  I have some hypnosis training, so I bought a dozen hypnotic and guided imagery CDs, loading them all into my MP3 player so I could check out the tracks and decide what to listen to. 

For me, Belleruth’s voice and words stood out immediately as something I could connect to.  I hate it when the narrator tells you to “let go”.  It’s very stressful to be asked NOT to be stressed!  But I relaxed when she started by acknowledging and validating the feelings I did have (“I know there are times when I become frightened, angry, impatient, jealous or sad, and I accept what I feel as my inner truth of the moment.”). For me, this was reassuring and uplifting - to first be allowed to accept the feelings I have, THEN to let them go.