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Is an alternative approach for you?

You’ve heard of alternative therapies and even wondered about whether having a treatment might be for you, so what’s holding you back?  Below I look at some of the things that might help you to decide whether an alternative therapy could be for you.

What can I use alternative therapies for?

The short answer is just about anything – recovering from a relationship breakdown, a painful joint, or how to move-on from a stressful job could benefit from having a therapy.

You may find that even if you are currently ‘under the doctor’ that an alternative therapy would be  beneficial as well. Always check this out with your doctor first.

I’m used to a ‘conventional’ approach – what about the evidence?

Well, there are sceptics about all things, and some in the science and medical professions have questioned the validity of alternative therapies, citing lack of evidence for how they work.  For the evidence orientated amongst us, there is in fact an increasing body of evidence already and trials going on to ‘prove’ the benefits of alternative therapies.  As a final thought on the matter – at worst having a therapy will make no difference, and all you will have had is time out to spend on yourself, and at best, it may prove to be a life changing experience!

Coming from a place of positive intent

The therapies I work with and the therapists I know all work from a place of love and positive intent for their client’s healing – what better way to start on that journey …

There are so many therapies and therapists – how do I choose?

Once you’ve decided that you would like to try an alternative therapy, you may like to follow my quick guide to help you make your choice:

1. Do you want to try a therapy that you may have heard of already – reiki, reflexology or homeopathy? or to try something that appeals to where you are right now – energy healing,  working with crystals or connecting with your angels?

2. Which therapist? Once you have decided on the therapy have a look at who’s available locally and read their leaflet or website – get a sense of the person and whether they feel right for you.  A great way of finding out more is to email or speak to them direct – if you do, perhaps prepare a list of questions beforehand, and remember it is your choice, so there is no need to commit yourself unless you feel sure.

Best of luck and I hope you find an alternative therapy and therapist to meet your needs.

 

Writing for good health

20150518170051You can think and think, but there’s nothing like getting thoughts down on a page.

The value of seeing thoughts on a page, from a healing perspective, is that it catches hold of them, gently forcing them to stop and be considered for what they are, rather than allowing them to continue rushing around, ‘head long’ without a pause.

Where to write

I like to write rather than type. Writing seems more immediate and direct, bringing me much closer to the ‘me’ inside.

I write in a simple memo book, like the one above from Silvine*. I would recommend not committing yourself to anything as fancy as a diary; or else you might just hesitate because your writing won’t feel up to the quality of a nice book. Infact, some of what you write won’t be a diary, so having a different place in which to land allows free reign for whatever chooses to emerge.

Just the two of you

So, what’s happening in your world? Rather than having thoughts just going round and round, let them have the light of day and commit them to a page, so that you can see them for real. Let the written words and your thoughts be two parts of you, one, out of which thoughts arise and the other, the conduit through which these thoughts take form and become more visible.

Remember that through this writing out, you are essentially tapping into the raw you. This is not a novel in the making, this is you, warts and all. As a result, some bits may make sense, whilst others will seem odd, nonsensical, childish or down right rude! Everything is welcome, it’s the equivalent of sifting through your drawers, you’re aiming to disgard whatreally doesn’t matter and keeping what does.

Making note of progress

You might want to review what you’ve written , or it may just be sufficient to write – tumbling thoughts don’t particularly need to make sense, but giving them some air time keeps them moving through, for example when venting frustrations.

On the other hand, reviewing is helpful from time to time because it provides a marker of where you have come from; it’s easy to forget progress made. I find that this also gives me a much more accurate record of what happened, not a partially, censored memory – which often defaults to highlighting the negatives of a situation.

What next?

Once out in the ‘open’, what do you do with this writing ramble, rant or re-discovery of self? It’s good to just have time for getting things off your chest, in the privacy of your own dialogue. For a worrying issue, seeing it written down gives a sense both of how much it matters and also what specifically the problem is. Being specific helps point the way to what action might resolve it.

I often find, too, that as I read the words back I can see how much I have come on over an issue or where I need to say, yes, I have to accept that I will do something differently another time – not punishing self, but just learning and re-adjusting!

The final word

I’ve been ‘writing out’ regularly for 18 months now, having previously started diaries and given up under the weight of introspection. For me then, there is a place both for writing out emotions, reactions and highlighting problems, and another for recording interesting events, interactions and ideas.

I usually write a page or two first thing – and in my notebook these are small pages – when my mind is at its least censoring or perhaps caring, which helps to get some of the grot or concern out. Later on, often last thing, I might do a little review of the day. At the moment, to vary the diary form, I am capturing an essence of my day in poetry. I’ll talk more of a ‘Journey Through May in Poetry’ perhaps, in another post. Thank you for reading.

PS

*More About Silvine – sustainable, ethical and in the UK.

eats, shoots and leavesJust in case you want to improve your punctuation, for when you write for ‘real’ – try this excellent and funny book byLynn Truss: ‘Eats, Shoots & Leaves’.

Teepees, tribes and power

teepees, tribes and powerPeople who live in teepees also wear sandals and eat lentils.  People who live in a big house, also have fast cars and clever accountants. Some of this may be true of some people, alternatively some of this may just be the perceptions of others. Either way, the message is clear, one assumption can often add up to more, until we are certain that we are poles apart and have nothing in common.

Lets meet on the middle ground then.  Well that can be problematic too, it’s either a place of compromise – not always seen as a good thing, so wishy washy as to be meaningless or just plain fudge (incidentally, I’ve always liked a lot of fudge!)

‘Teepees’ give us somewhere to gather, to form a tribe.  We can be fairly certain that at these gatherings, others will share similiar values and beliefs about the world to our own.  It gives us a refuge in which to seek comfort, validation of our beliefs and support from others.

Post General Election tribes have become very visible (and again year or so later with the EU Referendum), as this tweet from @Number10cat put it, commenting on people protesting about the return of David Cameron – ‘looks like some of the big society have turned up at Downing St’.

So where does all this leave us personally? Do we find our tribe, stay on the sidelines or take a pragmatic view depending upon the issue?  The politics we play with ourselves, largely depends upon how much personal power we believe we have.  On the other hand in the public arena, politics with a ‘P’ gives those in ‘Power’ an opportunity to exercise it wisely on behalf of us all, or to revert to promoting sectional interests – overt or covert.

The Big Society of which @Number10cat speaks formed part of the Conservative – Liberal Democrat Coalition Agreement from 2010, which aimed to take power away from the politicians and instead to give it to the people. Though it was later taken up as a phrase synonymous with Coalition hypocrisy, in certain quarters.

If we are to be ‘big’, either within our own personal spheres or within society as a whole, I suggest that we do need to decide what we believe in and what is important – to the point that we are prepared to take a stand over it. Once we are clear then yes, go take your teepee and find your tribe, but do use your power wisely when you meet the teepees and tribes of others, over there. Thank you for reading.

Over to you…do you have personal power, does it help you to be part of a tribe and what do you do when you come across the tribes of others? Do reply, by sharing in the Comments below. Thank you 🙂

How voting is good for your spiritual practice

Election 15 - Downing StAlready heartedly sick of Election 2015 – then thinking of voting as having anything to do with your spiritual practice is counter-intuitive, right? However, when you participate, make a stand, respond from what’s right, it’s a way of connecting with your authentic self, the essence of spiritual practice.

This General Election is the second in a row, in which there is no foregone conclusion as to which party or coalition of parties will form the next Government.  Especially in marginal seats, of which there are 150, your vote will really count – the Election will be won or lost in just those few constituencies, it’s that tight.

So, what’s all this got to do with your spiritual practice – after all not voting may feel the most positive thing that you can do, especially if you live in a ‘safe’ seat whose incumbent you won’t be voting for? Major events or possibilities of change, are an opportunity for you to evaluate your own values, beliefs and what’s important for the world  – all good for knowing who you are. In election terms, getting close to this means aligning what you believe in, with the policies of parties that match them. Curious to find out – you can take a survey such as the one at Vote for Policies.

Even if voting isn’t your thing, election times throw up a wave of alternative views and ways of acting upon them. Following a spiritual practice is all about regular enquiry within, reflecting upon our responses to external stimuli. Social media, for example, such as Twitter and campaign groups such as 38 Degrees, have all sorts of ideas and ways of responding. Mass communication can of course always be manipulated, but the more of us that consider and have our say, the less it becomes the judgement of the few that counts. Giving a space for new ideas to take hold.

If you are sceptical that any political party can make a difference, there are others ways to solve problems – locally and nationally. Crowd funding, for example, is a way to finance good ideas, where everyone chips in a small amount.

And the final option? You can always vote with your feet. Or perhaps tomorrow morning, sit quietly for a few minutes, welcome in and surround yourself with balancing energies and then send them out across your constituency.  You might be left clearer, if you are not sure whether or in what way to vote. Not knowing what others will choose, you might be surprised by how things turn out – and so the wheel of spiritual practice will turn again. Thanks for reading.

Over to you…what supports your spiritual practice and is grist to the mill of your self discovery? Do reply by sharing in the Comments below. Thank you 🙂