Saturday, February 28, 2009

To Increase Your Secure Feelings About Money


I saw this posted on the Angel Therapy board (Dr. Doreen Virtue) in the Feb 2009 issue of the Angel Therapy Newsletter.

To increase your secure feelings about money, try these methods:

1. Write your worries or concerns and put them in a special box (I call it a God Box) as a physical demonstration of “letting go and letting God” help you with the issues.

2. Write a letter to God, spelling out all of your feelings and what you need help with. Put this letter face-up on your altar or the location where you most-often pray. I’ve had miraculous results over the years with this method.

3. Write any fears on a piece of paper and then put that paper in the freezer compartment of your refrigerator. When you “freeze the fears,” the problem is rapidly resolved.

4. Keep asking yourself: “What is the blessing within this situation?” There’s always a silver lining to every seeming problem.

5. Use my favorite Louise Hay affirmation: “Out of this situation, only good will come!” The more that you affirm this, the more peaceful you will feel. And a peaceful mind attracts and creates wonderful solutions.


Note: Picture courtesy of Don Shetterly. A rare glimpse of Don's creative side with chalk.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

The Emotion Of Triggers


Note: Click Here for a Licensed Print Ready Copy

Emotional triggers, for many people, are part of everyday life it seems. These triggers seem to always hang around and make their presence known whenever they feel like it. Sometimes emotional triggers appear not only when we least expect them, but at some of the worst moments. I know this too well because it seems like I own a goldmine of emotional triggers. While I don’t actively try to harvest these things, they just seem to find their way to the surface.

Emotion tends to guide many things we do, even if we are not fully aware that it does. Most of these emotions are not necessarily conscious, but they show up in a conscious manner. Often the person displaying these emotions is not necessarily aware of it or how they are truly coming across to the observer on the outside.

So what is a trigger? That might be a good question to answer because they are many, and I would say each person has something that triggers them. A trigger is some event in your present moment that connects you in a very deep, automatic and quick way to something that you have experienced in your past. It could be a sight, smell, sound, touch, taste or it could be a word, phrase, piece of music, color or just about anything that you observe and interact with in a day. Watching a TV program may invoke connections to memory places in your brain, as can hearing some song or even feeling the touch of someone around you. What you pick up does not necessarily have to be something horrible, and it may not necessarily be something that is directly related to the past event.

When something in your present moment invokes an automatic reaction deep within you, it is connecting in the brain and in the body with some moment of emotional charge from your past. It is an extremely quick, unconscious connection that can play out within a matter of seconds. What sets it off has no limits, no boundaries and often no warning. If you are able to identify what sets the triggers off, then you will be ahead of the curve, but often they are silent lurkers waiting to pounce as a lion would wait to pounce upon its prey.

This connection to the past is an emotional trigger. There was some past experience that had such an emotional charge to it, that the current moment is connecting that brain synapse. Often the triggers hit us in such a way that it knocks us for a loop in life but sometimes the triggers could be connected to something very beautiful in our life. For instance, if you smell a Christmas tree and it triggers your mind back to some fun early childhood memory of Christmas, it would be a very beautiful thing in this instance.

However if you take the same scenario and have another person influenced by the smell of a Christmas tree, it could take them back to a moment of horror, pain and sadness because of some event they experienced. So while we often see triggers in a negative manner, they can be positive as well, bringing out our life’s experiences and memories that we treasure and cherish. A person is able to have both positive and negative triggers.

Take, for example, emotional blasts to the past that I cherish. I have some very beautiful hymns and choruses from church that I just love to play on the piano. It takes me back to the days where I was learning how to play the piano and would spend hours creating the beautiful music. At the same time, there were many agonizing moments taking place in our house, and it was usually filled with a lot of stress, anger, yelling and strong displays of emotion. So often those songs, while they were played with beauty, were also a part of something I was trying to escape from. Now I find that in an instant, I am taken back to both sides of those experiences from my childhood. They are one and the same. The trigger could be positive and it is in many ways, but it is also negative and invokes a sense of sadness, horror and pain which still resides in my body to this day.

Another trigger I have struggled with is one that took many years for me to begin to understand. As I was sitting at a traffic light, there was this car that pulled up beside me with a stereo blasting, and the bass sound was pounding the pavement extremely hard. No matter what I did, I could not get myself to let go of the bass sound coming from that car. I began to notice that I was becoming extremely angry. Fortunately I had my windows up and AC running, because I was screaming every obscenity at the person that I could get out of my mouth. I hated them at that moment and wanted them to die. If I would have had a gun, there’s a chance that I would have used it and that is one reason I will not own a gun. I started honking my horn and waiting for the light to change in what seemed like an eternity in slow speed. I’m sure people were wondering what my problem was, and I had only a couple of things on my mind. Either I wanted to flee the sound and the situation as quickly as I could, or I wanted to do anything to get this to stop. My heart was racing, my head was pounding, my muscles in my arms and legs had grown tense and all the time, the AC was not working fast enough to even being cooling me down. Finally the light turned green and I was able to escape from the loud bass sound coming from this car, but I was left wondering why I got so angry and almost out of control for something like this. After all, it didn’t seem to bother others around me.

As time went, I began to be impacted less and less by the bass sound around me but it still made life pretty difficult. Then one day long after this, my cat began just meowing very loudly each day shortly after we moved to a new home. It was like she wanted attention but expected me to come to where she was, and she wouldn’t be quiet until I did so. The sound was excruciating and no matter what, I could not get my cat to stop making the loud meow. Finally one day I broke down in tears as I connected the trigger of the bass sound to my cat making the loud meow.

You see, when I was a child, I always loved having cats. We moved a lot so it was difficult but somehow I always managed to get a cat. My parents seemed to love animals but for some reason the cats were always afraid of my father and I never knew why. One night as a child doing dishes, I was standing on a kitchen chair because I wasn’t big enough to quite reach the sink, and had myself propped up while washing the dishes. I had to be very careful to get each and every dish very clean because if I did not, I would be in big trouble. So it was with fear and trepidation that I would wash the dishes to help my mom. On this night, there were very loud sounds coming from outside. I knew my father and mother had gone outside to the basement cellar for something, but wasn’t sure exactly what it was. We had one of those basement cellars that had the door right outside the kitchen window and back porch, which opened up out of the ground. That’s where my kittens stayed during the night, and since there were ways into the basement that the kittens knew about, it was a great place for them. There was the little gray charcoal colored kitten, Charcoal; the black kitten I named Blacky; and the grey colored one that I called Smokey, that I would sing the song “On Top of Old Smokey” to. They meant so much to me and were my companions in a world filled with turmoil.

On that night though, I heard a very loud noise of screams coming from many different things. It was horrible and I remember being horrified at what was going on outside, knowing that it was something to do with my cats. Of course I had been warned not to venture outside no matter what, and I knew that at the risk of losing my own life, I would not do this. But I listened to the screams of my kittens begging for life and begging to just let them go, as I heard the old heavy wooden cellar door slam and then slam again and again. After the final slam of the door, there was silence. No kittens could be heard. Not a single kitten left to make a sound. After what seemed like an eternity to me, my parents came back in through the back porch of the house, and you could tell my mom had been in tears and was struggling to look me in the eye. I knew she didn’t want to do what she was forced to partake in with my father. I’m sure it was horrible for her as well. My father seemed to have that cold stare in his eyes that I had seen before, and announced to me that the kittens had been playing around the door and got caught as the door was trying to close. My little brain wanted to accept the reasoning he gave me, but deep down it just didn’t add up. My eyes wanted to cry but I was warned to not be a baby about it, and it was just an unavoidable accident that had happened. After all, as I was told, crying about it would do no good and I just needed to act mature. So without tears, I finished washing the dishes that night, staring out into the night sky knowing that I would never see Charcoal, Blacky or Smokey again.

So as I sat there in traffic that day with the bass sound coming from the other car, I didn’t initially realize how the awful noise was connecting me back to a day as a child when I so wanted to stop my father from killing the kittens. Yet I was powerless to do anything or to stop it. Then when my cat began her loud meows, the sounds connected me back to that frightful night. To this day, it is very difficult to even think about this, let alone write about it, and yet it was not the first nor would it be the last time this experience would be all in a day’s activities for me.

You see, these emotional triggers stay with us until we find a way to discharge the emotional energy that is locked up within them. For if energy is trapped in a moment, it will continue searching for ways to exit and complete the direction it was going. Whether this is through something that one does physically to themselves or others, or through some type of health and disease condition or whatever way it is, the trapped energy spends its days looking for a way out. There is some point within the body where it resides, that once tapped into, yields the event as if it were playing out in the present moment. Many of us go through our lives with these things residing within us, but we never find the way to completely release them from our innermost selves. Sure we find ways to rationalize them, and make sense of them, all the time harboring the potential energy that they encase.

You may be able to go for years without ever dealing with many of these things, and in fact it is quite possible for one to go to their grave avoiding them. However at some point, the trapped energy of these moments will play out in some manner. Avoiding them keeps us operating at less than we were meant to be, and keeps us from becoming more human with potential beyond our wildest imaginations.

If you’re fortunate like I was to begin putting the pieces together, that is a good first step in recovering the energy and the trauma that the triggers hold. However, it may take years for all of this to happen, or it could happen quickly. I have many more examples of my own experiences in this as I am sure each person does. But finding the point in the body where these experiences and triggers surface is the key to having the opportunity to let them go. Once this connection to the body is made, the potential is so great. After all, the trapped energy is potential energy, and by taking the power back from it, you gain so much in your life in so many ways: from pure awareness, joy and an easier life, to less health issues and a more wholesome body to live in. No, it isn’t easy going through the triggers and reclaiming this but it isn’t as hard as one may think it is. The rewards are great, especially if you are able to do this with someone that understands how to guide you through this process and has undergone the process of healing in their own life. For truly someone that has already walked the road, can be one of the best people to help other travelers find their way through the maze of emotional triggers we suffer in life.

May you be awakened to a new thought as you have read this, realizing that there is much more than you may currently have in your life. Know that the aches and pains, health conditions, and all those discomforts you feel in your life are there for a reason. They are not to be gotten rid, of but experienced to the point of reclaiming your power over them. For when you reclaim the power of these discomforts and pains in your life, you truly are discovering what it is like to live in your body. Living in your body and enjoying it can be one of the greatest gifts we can give ourselves. The potential has no boundaries and the rewards are without limits. My hope is that you will not focus upon the pain I endured in the example, but that you will use what you have read as a catalyst for searching in your own life.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

The Heart, Anger & Irregular Heartbeats

Today it was reported in the health section of the Wall Street Journal that how the heart handles anger predicts who is at risk for a life threatening irregular heartbeat. It has often been thought that negative emotions put people at risk for developing heart disease and usually after natural disasters, heart attacks increase.

According to Rachel Lampert, a Yale University researcher working on emotions and heart disease, "anger causes electrical changes in the heart". In this particular study, 62 patients were fitted with defibrillators in their chests because of preexisting heart disease. When the patients remembered something that made them angry, EKG beat-to-beat patterns were irregular. The emotional stress was producing causing physical stress to the body. The important point to note is that it did this without causing a jump in heart rate suggesting that anger's Adrenalin rush may act directly on heart cells.

The result is that the people whose EKG showed a big anger surge were much more likely to have their defibrillators fire a lifesaving shock in the next three years than people whose hearts didn't react to anger according to Dr. Lampert.

The source of this article can be found online at the Wall Street Journal
"How Heart Handles Anger Predicts Irregular Heartbeat"



As I have learned through the work I do and in my own life, our emotions do have a direct effect on our physical bodies. However, if we try to mask those emotions and just make ourselves appear happy, we have not taken care of the negative emotions. In order for the negative emotions to no longer have power over us, we must go into them and make peace with them. Only by knowing ourselves fully and being at home within our bodies, we will then give ourselves one of the greatest gifts we can, a healthy body.

There are many ways that the emotions come through our body and if you pay close attention to yourself and others around you, this will become evident. Here's some of the more common ones that you may use or hear others use:
  • I've got butterflies in my stomach
  • I'm so angry I can't see straight
  • This problem is giving me a headache
  • I feel like I'm carrying the weight of the world on my shoulders
  • I feel like I've got a monkey on my back
  • This situation just takes my breath away
  • It gives me a lump in my throat
  • Life is giving me a pain in the neck
  • I feel like my feet are made of lead
  • It hurts so bad I could just cry

The other thing to note in this research and I would agree with the statement is that up to three years later, the effects of anger may have caused a life saving shock of the defibrillator to be administered. That in effect is saying that even after the emotion passes, it is still resident within our bodies unless we find the proper way to discharge its affects on us.

I'm not suggesting that we try to go about our day being happy go lucky people and avoiding anger because as I alluded to earlier, if we bottle this up within us, at some point the effects will be felt. Just as a pressure cooker works, so does the body. If you continue to apply heat under pressure, something has to give. The pressure cooker can not continue to stay this way forever and neither can the body. Learning to let the pressure out in a safe way and in doses that we are comfortable with will give us optimal emotional and physical health.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Laundry Detergents: Clean House Clean Planet


Clean House Clean Planet by Karen Logan

Many laundry detergents have various ingredients in them that may not be the best for you, the environment or your clothes. Common ingredients can include quaternary ammonium compounds, sodium carbonate (or washing soda), sodium alkyl benzene sulfonate, sodium silicate, bleach, enzymes and sometimes phosphates. Sometimes the ingredients on the laundry detergent containers are cloaked in secrecy or ambiguous descriptions. So you may really have to do some research to find out what is truly in the detergent you use. (see pg 191 - Clean House, Clean Planet by Karen Logan)

So to help you out, here are a few of the common ingredients and a little behind the scenes story that you won't find talked about about.

Quaternary Ammonium Compounds are toxic. Ingestion can cause burns in the throat. Many companies have phased out these compounds, you can still find them in older formulations. All phenols are corrosive and damaging to the skin and eyes with prolonged exposure leading to liver and kidney damage. (see pg 111 - Clean House, Clean Planet by Karen Logan)

Sodium Carbonate (or Washing Soda) according to Wikipedia is a sodium salt of carbonic acid. Used in the making of glass, as a pH regulator, to remove the flesh from bones in taxidermy, and also used in washing detergents, in food cooking. Sodium Carbonate does have a different chemical composition from Sodium Bicarbonate (also known as Baking Soda). This has many uses but as you can see it has some extremes.

Sodium Alkyl Benzene Sulfonate according to the MSDS (Material Safety Data Sheet), this is harmful if ingested or inhaled in quantities. It is a mild skin irritant and is readily metabolized in the body.

Sodium Silicate has many uses according to Wikipedia. If it is used in neutral or alkaline it is stable but if it is in an acidic solution, it reacts with hydrogen ions to form silicic acid. Some of the many uses of Sodium Silicate include muffler repair and fitting paste, to seal leaks in the head gasket of engines, to create algae for aquaculture hatcheries, general purpose cement, food preservation, timber treatment, passive fire protection, and water treatment.

Bleach is found in almost everyone's laundry room and yet it was the most frequently reported exposure to the Poison Control Center in 1994. When mixed with acids, bleach can form toxic chlorine gas and when mixed with ammonia, it can form toxic chloramine gas. Bleach can irritate the skin and when ingested it can irritate the mouth, esophagus and stomach. (Pg 19 - Clean House, Clean Planet by Karen Logan). There are also issues of the environment that of course the manufacturer says it is completely safe but that does not necessarily mean it is. There is plenty of evidence out there to suggest that what the manufacturer says is not necessarily true.


If you wish to read up more on various ingredients that are used in laundry detergents, the Soap And Detergent Association has a wonderful website filled with information relating to the industry that they represent. So please read that website with this in mind.

I have tried to find a site that lists all the ingredients of laundry detergents but if it is out there, it is evading me. Of course they claim it is a trade secret but in all reality, as toxic as the ingredients are, they should be listed. We have to thank the lobbyists and campaign contributions for making sure of this.

In this post, I've just listed a few ingredients that have some strange uses. Laundry detergent is not something you want to eat or drink but with children around, you need to be very careful as it takes very little to be ingested to cause serious problems. Laundry detergents are a major source of waste water and so the toxic ingredients in them have to go somewhere. It is probably safe to say that the less we use of these things, the better our world will be for future generations. There is so much more I could share from the book Clean House, Clean Planet by Karen Logan, but I'll let you read it and learn much more than I am able to share here. It is an excellent book and I've personally used many of her ideas. They do work and they work well.

One thing to keep in mind is that many of these detergents to do not wash or rinse out of your clothes very well. If you don't believe this, try washing the next load of laundry and don't put any detergent in. See how much soap and suds come out of the clothes. Some detergents are better than others but why have all of this stuck to the fibers of your clothes where it might be a mild skin irritant or have a level of toxicity that you wear on your body all day long.

Here's some immediate things you can to begin changing how you use Laundry Detergent: (pg 196 - Clean House Clean Planet by Karen Logan)
  • Use half as much detergent and look at the results. Most likely your clothes will be clean with less product. Check it out for yourself and adjust the amount used to see what you truly need for your water type and situation.
  • If you have really have a load of laundry that is soiled, you could add a 1/2 Cup of Borax as a laundry booster.
  • When you're finished with a bottle of detergent, don't' just throw it out. Fill it up with water from the machine and use it in your washer for another load. You make the bottle go a little further which makes your dollars more effective and less goes into the landfill to pollute the environment and ground water.
  • Instead of bleach, try using lemon juice from a squeezed lemon. It works well and it doesn't take much.
  • Instead of fabric softener, try using 1/2 Cup baking soda to the rinse cycle.
  • Check out alternatives to the regular store brands. There are more Eco friendly products and some of them don't get too expensive.
  • Get yourself a measuring cup and keep it by the washing machine to accurately measure out laundry detergent. Don't go by the eyeball method or if I put more, it will clean better. More is not always better. Plus your laundry detergent dollars will go much further!
I use Dr. Bronner's Sal Suds for my laundry and I also use it for general cleaning and to mop my floors. It is a great cleaner and rinses out of the clothes much better than most laundry detergents. I use essential oils as well if I am cleaning the floors and it really makes the house smell great. The one nice thing when I use it on the floors is that it seems like dirt is not attracted to my floors like regular household cleaners. So I assume the same is true with using this in the laundry. This product appears expensive but I have a 1/4 cup measuring cup that I use and for most loads of laundry, I probably fill that measuring cup half way. Half of the 1/4 cup measuring cup is plenty for about 4 gallons of mop bucket water. Any more than that and everything is too soap sudsy. I have even began to experiment putting lemon essential oil (about 5 drops) into my whites and I was amazed at how well it cleaned them. I've started to add 1/2 cup of baking soda and it helps not only clean the laundry good but gives them a softness. So while this soap product may look expensive, it does go a long ways. If you use it like I do, it will last a long time.

The biggest thing is to become aware of what you are using and see just how it impacts not only your life, but the world around you. Of course finding something that works well and is not a hassle, is a big plus in making this work. Do like I've done though and prove to yourself if all of this makes a difference. I was a skeptic at first but the more I learn and do with this, the more I realize just what a difference it makes in my life.

Much of the information I shared here, I got from researching online and reading the book, Clean House Clean Planet by Karen Logan. This book is wonderful and has so many natural cleaning methods in it that are easy, inexpensive and wonderful to use. If you want to cut some of your household expenses from cleaning supplies, get this book. You'll be surprised at how it changes your life!

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Give With Joy


I saw this note posted on Doreen Virtue's Angel Therapy Newsletter and thought it said so much.

Of course we don’t give in order to receive. That’s called “outlining” which is handing the universe a script of how you want your prayers answered . . . a limiting and blocking behavior.

Instead, give with joy and courage, and without attachment to outcome. And know that you are already receiving in surprising, unexpected, and sometimes humorous ways.

Today, look for three or more ways to give. It can be anything: a smile, a hug, words of encouragement, a ride, a meal, or money. Feel the shift within yourself each time that you give. And trust that your needs are being taken care of automatically. Give with confidence. Give today.

Note: Picture courtesy of Don Shetterly's Single CD, Meditation Music, Healing Angels.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Balsam Fir Essential Oil


-- Stimulates the mind
-- Relaxes The Body
-- Soothes aching muscles

Idaho Balsam Fir comes from the botanical family of Pinaceae. The Balsam Fir is often used as a Christmas Tree. It is a Conifer oil distilled in northern Idaho from the needles of the Balsam Tree. Conifer is the name for a tree belonging to the order Coniferales. They are trees with needles or scale like leaves and cones as opposed to broad, flat leaves.(1)

It is made up of alpha-pinene, beta pinene, camphene and limonene.
Balsam Fir is been used primarily for its antiseptic properties and its soothing effect on the muscle and body aches associated with exercise. It is known for its refreshing and uplifting scent.(2)

If you would like to know how to order this or learn more about it, feel free to contact me.

1. Tree Identification, The Confiers
2. Young Living

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

A Man Walks Down The Street

Someone once told me a story about a someone who was going through a very difficult time. However, from the outsiders perspective, they could see the changes the person needed to make but that person continued to do the same thing over and over again. So too, many of us are like this. Here's how the story goes.

A man walks down the street.
A man falls in a deep hole.
A man walks down the street.
Again, a man falls in a deep hole.
A man walks down the street.
Again, a man falls in a deep hole.
The man walks down the street.
This time he walks around the deep hole.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

My Enteric Brain Journey, July 31, 2004


Here is an account of one of my sessions with Dr. Canali in 2004. My reason for sharing this and subsequent postings from my journal are to help bring about awareness to all that is possible through this simple but deep form of healing. Please keep checking back because I intend to continue posting parts of my sessions and with time, they will share a lot of information.

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Last night I had one of the deepest nights of sleep that I have ever had in my life. I don’t think I have ever experienced that. The dreams were more vivid than I usually have and when my alarm clock went off this morning, I did not want it to end. I actually went back to sleep for a couple of hours because it was such a beautiful moment for me. Anyway, I really feel rested right now and I went outside and sat in the sun for a few minutes.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Valentine's Day Brain Teaser

Just for a moment of fun today,

A Valentines Day Brainteaser...

What is the anatomical juxtaposition of two obicularis muscles in a state of contraction?

If you know the answer, share the concept with someone!



For some relaxing piano music for that special Valentines Day romance
http://mindbodythoughts.blogspot.com/p/relaxing-piano-music.html

Thursday, February 12, 2009

My Enteric Brain Journey, July 30, 2004

Here is an account of one of my first session with Dr. Canali in 2004. My reason for sharing this and subsequent postings from my journal are to help bring about awareness to all that is possible through this simple but deep form of healing. Please keep checking back because I intend to continue posting parts of my sessions and with time, they will share a lot of information.

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July 30, 2004

Wow, the treatment I had today seemed like it was only 5 minutes long but when I left to go home, I realized I had been there for an hour. It sure didn’t feel that long and when Dr. Canali was trying to bring me back to the room, I thought that was strange because it seemed like only moments earlier we were starting the process.

I felt a lot of trembling (just very light and rhythmic) through out my body but mostly in my legs. But other than that I really didn’t feel to much or wasn’t aware of what took place. I don’t remember much of what was going on around me and felt like I was in a void all to myself where it was quiet and peaceful.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

From Paralysis and Fear Through Touch


Note: For a licensed print ready version, click here.

Imagine a 25 year old guy laying in a hospital bed and struggling to talk, move all parts of his body and remember basic things like his name. There was no car accident and no disease. The muscles had the same tone in them as they had before this time.

Just days before, this same guy had been an average hard working person just trying to make it in life. Of course he had the usual aches and pains that everyone has and he had been getting medical attention to deal with all of this. Of course most of the doctors didn’t have the slightest clue what to do in this situation. After a severe episode of seizures, he was taken by ambulance to the hospital only to be sent home because they found nothing wrong with him.

As the situation worsened, family and friends once again took him to seek additional medical help. Fortunately this time a neurologist knew to ask the right questions which began the road of healing for this young man. He had been diagnosed with a condition known as a conversion disorder.

Conversion disorders are technically known as Somatoform Disorders which involve physical bodily symptoms that suggest there is a medical problem when in fact no medical condition can be found. Symptoms may include anything from chronic pain, blindness, and deafness to paralysis of the arms and legs, and seizures. Conversion Disorders are estimated to occur in about 15 out of 100,000 people. It is a very rare condition.

If you have not figured out by now who this person is, it was me. I suffered through this condition in 1991 and have fought hard to overcome the effects of it. Although some sources indicate there is no treatment for the disorder, most people would not be able to tell I suffered through paralysis to the point that my brain was shutting down on me.

As part of my continued healing, I spent many years undergoing counseling and therapy to overcome the effects of this condition. With conversion disorders, there is usually an underlying emotional situation such as child abuse that goes to the root cause. I did suffer through intense child abuse as a kid and I have had to deal with the effects that this brought into my life.

For a long time in my life, I struggled with touch. Since my body was beaten and sexually abused as a kid, touch and closeness to other humans was not something that was a comfort to me. Yet at the same time, I longed for touch and I longed to be close to people because it was a very lonely life.

Several years ago, I started trying to receive massage from a very good licensed massage therapist in NC. This lady was very professional and tried to make sure she could do whatever it took to help me begin accepting touch as something good, healthy and beneficial. I think I made it through about 3 sessions before what she was doing just triggered me to past events. I still remember leaving her office that day, so silent and withdrawn, not able to say what was going on and afraid of her even though she was doing a fantastic job. Of course it was not her that I was afraid of, it was the touch.

More healing took place in my life which allowed me for the first time to accept touch in a healthy and wholesome way. As time went, I began to trust a very special person in my life and touch became so much easier than it had ever been in my life. However I went through some very intense periods where a hug would leave me feeling nauseated and I would feel at times like my skin was crawling with bugs. Even with all of the struggles I faced, my body longed to be touched and to actually feel the touch and feel the goodness that it held.

After a life changing event where I lost my mom to a car accident, I began to contemplate the future direction of my life and the role the universe was asking me to play in it. Amazingly with all of the touch issues I struggled with, I was drawn to massage school. Just before massage school, I once again had a massage and it was actually something that was a much more enjoyable experience for me. I knew that I was drawn to massage school for some reason but was not totally sure why at that point nor was I sure if I could handle learning how to touch others. Fortunately, I trusted my intuition enough and took a giant leap of faith into massage school.

I felt so at home at Educating Hands School of Massage and I felt like I would be able to learn how to trust others. So as time went and we began doing the touch on each other, I was so frightened. My body didn’t know how to take all of this and so most of the time, it just shut down to what I was feeling. I know several of my classmates were frustrated when we tried to give feedback about the massage and I had no words to describe it because I could not feel it. I knew that the massage was not bad, but I absolutely could not feel it.

With time and continued massage day after day, my body began to wake up. It started to see for the first time in my entire life just what touch was. It was like a miracle to me and as I began to feel the touch of my classmates in my body, I began to feel and sense through my fingers wonderful things that were going on inside of those people I got to work on. As school progressed and the experiences continued to come my way, my body became more awake and alive. Life started to change in dramatic ways for me.

Last July, I again followed intuition and attended a workshop by Dr. Paul Canali on the Enteric Brain. It was at this workshop that I heard someone speak a language about the body which my body fully understood and realized that no one else had ever spoken in this way. Through my continued work with Dr. Canali’s, “Unified Healing Therapy”, I am for the first time in my life becoming totally aware of what it means to live in my body. I’m actually experiencing what it means to reach a relaxed state far from the anxiety, depression and abuse that I suffered from all of my life. Touch is becoming so much more alive in me and life is becoming more beautiful with each new day of awareness that I am introduced to.

Working with people who struggle with touch takes a great deal of patience, understanding, compassion, sensitivity and non judgment. There are others out there like myself who may come across your massage table and I hope that you realize from my story that touch is sometimes a very scary thing but you may just be one of the healing stones for that person on their journey. From first hand experience, I know there is hope for each and everyone of these people and while the journey may get rough, it is well worth it in the end.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Self Discovery

Self discovery could be compared to a sewing needle. It takes focus, patience and if you don't get the thread through the eye of the needle, just keep trying until you do.

Monday, February 9, 2009

A Trager(R) Moment

Trager Is: The Trager Approach is a pleasurable, gentle and effective approach to movement education and mind/body integration; the effects are deep and long-lasting. Many people seek Trager sessions for personal growth or increased feelings of joy and wellness. For more information, http://www.trager-us.org/

Here's a thought from one of the Mentastics(R) Playing Cards

How would it feel to sit....


If your neck was a spring

on which your head was

effortlessly balanced

Friday, February 6, 2009

Relaxing Music - Under The Palm Trees

www.donshetterly.com
Music by Don Shetterly

Here's a nice little video to help warm up these cold days and nights.

Imagine relaxing under the palm trees by the water on a warm summer day as the gentle breezes go by. Video taken at John Pennekamp State Park in Key Largo, Florida. (c) 2007 Don Shetterly

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Giving Away Our Power


For a licensed print ready version, download on LuLu.com

As a young child, I grew up with a family that attended church every Sunday, and usually a few times during the week. I remember going to many different churches and denominations of churches during my younger years. I’m not sure exactly why we went to so many different churches except that my parents were probably in the “searching” phase of their lives, and they were looking for the perfect church.

One of the last churches, a Baptist Church that I remember we went to, was while I was in high school. This was not just any Baptist church but one that was part of a group known as the General Association of Regular Baptist Churches. Their acronym was GARBC, and today those letters still make me cringe. I won’t apologize if I’m offending anyone who attends these because this is my story. While my story may not be the same as your experiences with the GARBC, it is my story nevertheless.

In this church, it seemed there were more rules than there are laws in our country. Couples in church were not allowed, or discouraged from showing any affection while in church. This included not holding hands and any type of kissing or hugging. According to what my ears heard, the church was not the place for this type of thing. It was reserved for the bedroom only.

At church camp, the boys were not allowed to go swimming with the girls. It was explained to me that this could lead to unwanted acts between girls and boys, which of course were forbidden by the bible. When you did go swimming, though, especially if the opposite sex was present, you were required to wear not only appropriate length swim wear but a t-shirt that covered your upper half of the body. In addition, you were expected to wear a towel wrapped around your legs as you made your way to the water, only taking the towel off shortly before you got in the water. If you were out of the pool, you were expected to cover yourself up with a towel so as to not expose yourself to the opposite sex. The t-shirt you were wearing never came off even when you were in the water.

Other rules by the church included boys and girls, if they were dating, to not sit closer than 6 inches apart and to act “God Like” in everything they did. No dancing was allowed because that could lead to sex. You did not frequent any restaurants or establishments that served alcoholic beverages because you might cause your “brother” to stumble. See, if you were seen entering an establishment like this, an unbeliever, or non church sinner type person (as they referred to them) might think you were going into drink and it was ok. If you were tempted to take one drink of alcohol, then it would lead to being an alcoholic, according to what was being preached to us.

I could go on with example after example of the rules in this church, and even though I’m talking about one church in particular, all churches have their rules. Some believe in one thing while others don’t. Some require certain statements or schooling in order to become a member in their church. So while some of the examples I gave may seem extreme, I would argue that most churches have requirements and rules that are extreme. However, the people that are part of these churches do not see or understand this. It all seems normal and in fact a necessary part of life.

Some in our society have turned away from the mainstream churches, partly because there were too many rules. Many have turned to new age philosophies that seem to have the everyday, regular people answers for questions to life. And while both of these approaches may have some nice tidbits in them for everyday life, much of what become the central teachings are nothing more than their own derived form of beliefs.

We as humans have a strong need to understand and describe what happens around us. When there is tragedy or loss, people find words to describe why it may or may not have happened. When there are unexplained events, people describe it as luck, being fortunate, “The Secret” and abundance, being spiritual and so forth. There are so many things going on around us and happening all the time, but so many times in our attempt to understand and explain to others, we develop a completely new set of beliefs that may or may not serve us well in the long run. I believe it is part of our human experience to do this. However when we lose sight of what it is that took place or what we are trying to explain and share, then we’ve lost the experience. All of the derived practices, teachings, procedures and rules will not bring the experience back because it is as a conversation; once spoken, the conversation is gone. You can imitate the conversation or the experience, but you can never fully bring that particular conversation or experience back exactly as it was.

And yet, we as humans try to do this every day of our lives as well as in churches and new age movements. What is sad, though, is that we then lose the overall impact of the experience itself. The gift that was given to us has now been watered down.

In an attempt to understand that which we cannot explain, we often turn to others who seem to have more experience or knowledge in a particular subject matter that resonates with us. While there may be tidbits of wonderful enlightening truths in what they tell us, we begin to give the power of our own experiences up to someone other than ourselves. They then have the potential of becoming the sole authority on some truth in life for us, and what we learn has the potential of becoming a danger to our own journey of growth. If it is not a danger, it may sidetrack us, at least, on our journey.

As time goes, these people who have had “experiences” explained and reasoned and taught to them, go on to share these same tidbits of truth with others. For they are filled with joy that someone has explained to them why certain things happen and they are eager to share it with others. The only thing is we need to be careful as humans, because we need to be fully honest with ourselves that what we are sharing is a pure truth, and not a truth derived through our sense of what is going on. The ego is an anxious filter for our lives. The ego loves to explain that which we don’t know, but the ego should never be accepted without independent verification.

So by now, you may be wondering, how do I know what I should listen to or what truth is all about? Have you ever had a gut feeling about something? If you have, you know that no matter what someone tells you, that you realize deep down you just know what you’re experiencing is true for you. Have you ever had a moment when something miraculously happened in your life? No events or laws of nature or explanation could prove its existence, yet you knew that what you felt in your life about this was true. No one could tell you otherwise.

So too, what we experience in our bodies is a moment of truth for our lives like no other. There is no better judge of verification for what has taken place. For when you know deep down within you at the core of your being that something has taken place, then you have found the source of truth in your life.

I have often said that the answers we need lie within ourselves. That has so much truth in it because when we look outward from where we are at, we are denying ourselves. We are denying that which is so sacred and time tested. There is no better truth verifier than the deep core of our inmost being. We do not need to rely upon others for the power of knowing the truth in our own lives. For we have that process readily available within our own bodies.

So the next time you come across something that is hard to explain or that doesn’t make sense, take a moment to go deep inside of yourself and find the answers which you need. Be ready to listen to what comes forth in the way of thoughts, future experiences, and others that you meet. Always, though, go and check out everything within your body and see just how it feels. Does it make you feel safe and secure, or is there much fear and doubt as if to say, don’t go there? Does it feel as if you are looking forward to hope and possibility, or that if you do this, it will be more of the same despair and pain you’ve already been dealing with? Does your body feel more or less tense at the thought of what you are trying to understand? Listen to your body. It is your teacher.

And be careful that when you listen to others, you are not giving away your power by letting them be the truth for your lives. They can be there as teachers if you are completely honest with yourselves and objective, but anything beyond that is most likely not a healthy thing for you. Many people have many things to say, but take them and compare them to other events in your life as well. Pull out the tidbits of truth in everything and then see how it feels deep within. For when you do this, you will not only take back your own power, but you will be empowered in life as well.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

What The Bleep Do We Know

From the movie
“What The Bleep Do We Know”

I Create My Day

The most often referenced interview in the film is Dr. Joe Dispenza's comments on creating his day. In response to the numerous requests, the following is the transcript of that part of the interview.

"I wake up in the morning and I consciously create my day the way I want it to happen. Now sometimes, because my mind is examining all the things that I need to get done, it takes me a little bit to settle down and get to the point of where I'm actually intentionally creating my day. But here's the thing: When I create my day and out of nowhere little things happen that are so unexplainable, I know that they are the process or the result of my creation. And the more I do that, the more I build a neural net in my brain that I accept that that's possible. (This) gives me the power and the incentive to do it the next day.

"So if we're consciously designing our destiny, and if we're consciously from a spiritual standpoint throwing in with the idea that our thoughts can affect our reality or affect our life -- because reality equals life -- then I have this little pact that I have when I create my day. I say, 'I'm taking this time to create my day and I'm infecting the quantum field. Now if (it) is in fact the observer's watching me the whole time that I'm doing this and there is a spiritual aspect to myself, then show me a sign today that you paid attention to any one of these things that I created, and bring them in a way that I won't expect, so I'm as surprised at my ability to be able to experience these things. And make it so that I have no doubt that it's come from you,' and so I live my life, in a sense, all day long thinking about being a genius or thinking about being the glory and the power of God or thinking about being unconditional love.

"I'll use living as a genius, for example. And as I do that during parts of the day, I'll have thoughts that are so amazing, that cause a chill in my physical body, that have come from nowhere. But then I remember that that thought has an associated energy that's produced an effect in my physical body. Now that's a subjective experience, but the truth is is that I don't think that unless I was creating my day to have unlimited thought, that that thought would come."

Quote Source: http://www.whatthebleep.com/create/

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Essential Oils & Congestion



In case you're struggling with a stuffed up nose and congestion during this time of year, one of the things that I use is essential oils. I put it in a aromatherapy diffuser like the one in the picture (there are many different types of this). I light the little tea candle in the bottom of the diffuser and put some very clean water (distilled water is best) than I add the follow drops of essential oils.

4 drops of Lavendar
3 drops of Peppermint
7 drops of Eucalyptus
4 drops of Pine

This works wonders for me when I need to use it. Sometimes my allergies can kick up and this is usually all I need. It keeps me from taking Claritin like I used to do.

One thing to note is don't use cheap essential oils. Spend the money and get good quality ones. There is a difference between them in how they are harvested, processed and packaged. I know you can buy various oils in the health stores and local markets but most of the time you get what you pay for. When you consider how little you use in most things, a small bottle can last for some time. Always store your essential oils in a cool, dry place not in direct sunlight and they will last longer.

I buy my essential oils through www.youngliving.com because they are a very high quality essential oil. If you need essential oils, email me at don@donshetterly.com and I can get you set up with what you need and get you a good price!


IMPORTANT NOTE:  I  no longer buy my oils at Young Living.  Because of their dubious practices in sales, I found a much better supplier, http://www.anandaapothecary.com/   Ananda has wonderful customer service, high quality oils and great prices!