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Health Journeys Contributors (7)

26 Oct

I'm honored to guest blog for Belleruth while she travels this week. It is National Bullying Prevention Month, and for this column I decided to talk about extremely common forms of "self-bullying" – "fat talk" and body shaming. Both of these are unfortunately common and at odds with the expectation that we should treat everyone – ourselves included - with respect, compassion, and kindness.

As a woman, I'm struck by how often we criticize ourselves for being "too much of this" and "not enough of that." It is so ingrained for us to feel we must not take up too much space – literally or metaphorically. We criticize ourselves for the normal, largely unavoidable effects of aging, or for having bodies that differ from the airbrushed images we see in the media. We find fault with ourselves even despite objective information to the contrary.

10 Sep

As Summer draws to a close, I hear people speak of clothing they need to buy for Autumn and Winter and how discouraged they are because they have been "out of control" with regard to what they've been eating and lack of exercise. For the first time in my life, I feel different about the need for new clothes, and I wanted to share my experience with those who feel discouraged. I have been obese all my life. I began putting on weight for protection, and using food to medicate when I was being abused severely as a child. I am going to be 66 in November, so that's a long time to have been more than 100 pounds overweight.

In my 40's I began therapy and started excavating the pain I'd carried within for so long. I also tried lots of "diets," none if which worked for any length of time.

This past year, something shifted inside me and a new urge came over me...the urge to unveil...to be free...to be fully me. My soul was ready! One year ago this week, I took charge of this part of my life, not to diet, but to take better care of this physical vessel which houses my soul. I share the following which I hope will inspire others to heal and nurture your psyches and your souls. When we do this, it feels natural to also want to heal the body...the physical temple which we present to the world.
May you love yourselves abundantly, mind, body and spirit.

Love and blessings to all.
Lynne Newman

Journal Day #365
August 26, 2014

This week marks one year since I gave up Coca Cola, and in a few days it will be one year since I embarked on this journey of self-care and change. I have travelled some interesting paths since that fateful day when a decision was made within me to face, heal my body, and unbury myself from weight which I’ve carried for most of my life. I also needed to face the fact that I’ve used food as a drug for as long as I can remember.

It has been a journey of countless shifts within me. At times I felt strong, positive, motivated and vibrant. At other times, I’ve felt frightened, anxious, angry and in despair, much as I’ve felt in the past when I attempted to make these changes. Sometimes I feel strong, and other times I feel fragile inside. My determination this time is different, though. For some deep reason, even when I detour from my newer habits, I am able to get my focus back, and for this I’m grateful. This time I also know the feelings of love, compassion, deep joy and glimmers of true freedom.

19 Aug

Although it is still technically “summer time,” a few leaves have already begun to dry and fall from the trees in the New York City parks, the daytime sun has given way to a crisp nighttime temperature of 60-something degrees, and I have resumed the almost daily ritual of packing a light sweater in my bag “just in case.” As such, many of you have probably witnessed the re-emergence of that notorious TV commercial, with those kids -- dread-filled, feet dragging, frowns pronounced – trailing the giddy parent who skips through the school-supply aisle to the tune, “It’s the most wonderful time…of the year!”

All joking aside, for everyone, the start of the school year elicits something different. Certainly, there are those kids (and adults) who unequivocally enjoy the opportunity to connect socially and the academic stimulation of being in school. For others, this time of year can highlight feelings of “otherness” or social awkwardness, as well as struggles to complete schoolwork well, on time, or at all. The latter can result from difficulties in paying attention, diagnosable learning disorders, anxiety, poor self-esteem, or some combination of the above. In addition, challenges with schoolwork can serve to exacerbate all of these issues, resulting in a vicious cycle of distress and poorer performance.

10 Jun

Anger isn’t a negative emotion. In fact, it’s a normal and natural one. It produces very real and measurable physical and chemical changes within our bodies – changes in breathing, faster beating of our hearts and skin changes. Hormones are released into the body as well, the same hormones that are active in the fight-or-flight response.

It is not anger itself that causes children to act aggressively or inappropriately. It’s their response to that anger that can cause this. If we’re not careful to help them manage the anger, children can simply fall into the habit of being angry. It becomes a comfortable place for them because they have not actually learned to deal with their anger. But you can help your child to manage anger and strong feelings easily.

In order to do so, we must help our own child become familiar with his personal anger triggers. Then we can discuss strategies such as counting before reacting, taking deep breaths and even spending some time thinking things out before reacting. Include talking it out constructively as a foundational strategy. Thus, we teach our children to respond to the feelings of anger rather than reacting too quickly to it and lashing out. It’s important to point out that once we allow our anger to take over, the primitive part of the brain is in charge – we can no longer think as clearly or rationally, so we must first help our kids learn to identify the feeling of anger coming on, by understanding the physical responses to the feeling of anger.  Once children are able to identify the rising feelings, they will be more effective at dealing with and diffusing the anger.

16 Apr

Hi ~~ What fun to meet you here.  I'm Julie Lusk and a proud member of the Health Journeys family of guided imagery, meditation and yoga enthusiasts and contributors. 
 
You might recognize me from my books and CD's that are offered through Health Journeys.  Books include Yoga Meditations, 30 Scripts for Relaxation, Imagery and Inner Healing (2 volumes) and also the Wholesome Relaxation and Power of Presence CDs.  You can see more about my materials here.  We may have met at NICABM in one of the many yoga classes I offered through the years at their annual conferences.
 
Wouldn't it be great to meet in person?  I'd love it!  Let's meet for a 3-day course on guided imagery in the Bahamas in May  at the Sivananda Retreat Center.  We will explore several wonderful types of guided imagery within the context of the seven major chakras (energy centers) and the five koshas (sheaths). We will enjoy the experience of relaxing deeply and activating our energy by the stunning ocean, and surrounded by beautiful gardens and awesome people. There's also yoga, meditation, chanting, delicious food, and so much more!

31 Mar

Hello! I am so grateful to be a part of Health Journeys and all the wonderful products they offer. Sometimes browsing the site feels like being a kid in a candy store for lovers of guided imagery and meditation!

My name is Mellisa Dormoy and I am the writer and voice behind Shambala Teens Cds and founder of ShambalaKids. I love our youth. They are the builders of our tomorrow, the next keepers of light. And so, there is nothing more personally satisfying or encouraging to me than when I hear a parent tell me how their child has been deeply moved and helped by what I do.

I have a degree in Psychology and was trained as a hypnotist in NYC through the National Guild of Hypnotists. I later did a specialization in pediatric hypnotherapy because I love kids so much. I continue my education with CEUs in guided imagery, ADHD hypnotherapy and other workshops that enable me help teens and children even more.  

Having my own children gave me the opportunity to hone my skills, and it is they who continually inspire me to create more. Today, in addition to continually expanding our line of CDs and program offerings at ShambalaKids, I also train others to teach children’s relaxation and meditation. In this way, I continue my great love affair with guided imagery and meditation, and the positive, transformational affects they have on us and our families.

11 Mar

It is a joy to connect in this new way, here at Health Journeys’ Blog, where we are offered an opportunity to know staff and interact with people who are drawn to our guided imagery offerings. This is especially important as we walk through incredibly powerful changing times.

My passion is for assisting people on the journey of their souls, through life passages, experiences and the many profound things that happen within a human lifetime. Through the journey of my own soul, and deeply understanding the power of having another person witness and understand my story, and help me make sense of my life, when things seemed senseless, I found my purpose and my passion. I discovered and owned my dark side, and became aware too, of beautiful things about myself. I learned to forgive myself and others and to stop judging. Healing was deep and profound, and in the process, I discovered the poet within me, and learned about “exquisite sensitivity” in myself and others as they shared their life journeys with me. Each one that comes is my teacher. Each one that shares their heart and spirit is a gift. It is a privilege to be working in my passion.