May 042016
 

Meditation MediumRehabilitation from drug and alcohol addiction and even quitting smoking, are notoriously difficult pursuits. It is not uncommon to read about parents who cannot afford to feed their families, but who do not miss out on their daily pack of cigarettes. In this day and age, the very best rehabilitation programs have a 70 per cent relapse rate. Clearly, new approaches to addiction are required!

Reward- Based Learning Systems

The reason addictions can be so difficult to beat is the reward-based learning system, ingrained in the human brain since primitive times. In its most basic form, it comprises three elements: trigger, behavior, reward. Triggers are indulged and since the effect is positive, our brain stores this memory so we continue the same behavior in the future. In primitive times, this reward based system worked well to ensure people obtained food to survive yet it continues to govern the way our brain works today, even when food and drink are not scarce for many. All addictive substances (from cigarettes to alcohol) affect the part of the brain that reacts to these substances through the neurotransmitter, dopamine. Using addictive substances like cocaine and cigarettes, continues to feed a cycle that prompts reinforcement from these substances.

Current Treatments

The gold standard therapy for addiction recovery is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), which involves teaching individuals the connection between how they think, feel, and behave. The therapy has some success, yet not as much as we would like. It is thought to act through the prefrontal cortex (the part of the brain involved in reasoning and planning). Unfortunately, the prefrontal part of the brain is prone to fatigue and when we are stressed, tired or angry, people with addictions (and others who may be vulnerable) become more susceptible to using drugs.

The Role of Mindfulness Training

Mindfulness training is emerging as a possible solution to the limits of CBT. Mindfulness encourages people to pay close attention to their cravings (to the sensations, thoughts and feelings they comprise); to stay with these powerful urges and ride them out instead of acting out on them. Mindfulness can help people become disenchanted by the very substances they crave, when they truly analyze the sensations these substances provoke in their bodies.

Research has shown that mindfulness training helps people overcome a range of addictions – to alcohol, cocaine, nicotine, etc. One randomized trial showed that mindfulness was twice as effective as the American Lung Association’s Freedom from Smoking program. Mindfulness works so well because it deals with the core addictive loop, freeing addicts from the sensation of entrapment.

Mindfulness Treatment Programs

Though further research is needed, treatments such as Mindfulness-based Relapse Prevention (MBRP) are showing promise and many therapists have already been trained to give them. Web and app-based delivery of this treatment is also being developed. It is hoped that soon, short daily videos, animations and ‘here and now’ exercises can help those in recovery break the negative cycle created by reward-based learning systems.

This article was contributed by Julie

May 272015
 

When Jackson shared Webinar Bannerwith me the Personal Process of Creation technology that he discovered, I had no idea how much it was going to help me as an empath.

His full assessment of my natural skin and hair tones and the shapes present in my face revealed to us what my Personal Process of Creation is–something I have always known but never consciously recognized as legitimate. I was so blown away by what my Personal Process of Creation revealed about me that I was honored when Jackson asked me to co-host a webinar about using these processes to create, manifest, and reach goals!

By the way, if you’re interested in joining us for the webinar you can sign up here:

http://bit.ly/1JRI6ae

And here is a helpful hand-out you can use to follow along and take notes during the class:

http://bit.ly/1QabIiT

See, what I learned about my Personal Process to manifest and reach my goals is that I need to go through a stage of alone time and analysis before going any further and taking action. I think this is pretty typical of empaths who become over-stimulated easily and soak up so much energy from other people.

And this is an approach *not* typically supported and encouraged by society. Notice that if *your* Personal Process is different from that of most people around you and what they encourage, you can easily find yourself doing a lot of second-guessing. You may find yourself pressured to approach the sacred art of manifesting your desires in a way that is completely unnatural and forced for you.Empowered Sensitivity

It’s too easy for us empaths to focus on what other people want us to do, what their feelings are, and how they think we should approach any process. Jackson’s teachings have helped me accept myself and become more conscious of my Personal Process.

The key lies in understanding how the creative process works in each and everyone of us in connected, yet distinct ways. Even empaths may have slightly different Personal Processes.  But while we all use the same fundamental abilities in order to create, we each have a unique path we take every time we make something real. This path we take is the Personal Process of Creation.

The Personal Process of Creation is based on The Harmony Patterns, natural phenomena found all throughout Nature, including humankind. The Harmony Patterns can be seen in your Visual Design Elements: this means that your Personal Process of Creation is directly connected with these patterns found inside you–including the trait of being an empath.

By determining your Personal Harmony Pattern through an empirical testing method called the Harmony Analysis, you can learn your Personal Process of Creation. Of course there are truths you already know about yourself, but this pattern is not something you need to guess at. I really love that there is an empirical method for getting clear about what your patterns are. It’s like having a test done that reflects the nature of your soul. And this in turn helps you to become more conscious, gentle, and acknowledging of your true self.

Learning your Personal Process of Creation will take your creative abilities to a whole new level, giving you the knowledge you need to create with freedom and ease in the way that is unique for you. You will understand why you get stuck in certain phases of your work and how to easily overcome those obstacles–you will transcend the barrier between chaos and creation. You will be able to follow your own path in the creating and manifesting process–not the path that most success gurus teach, which may or may not be right for you.

The Personal Process of Creation applies not only to artistic endeavors, but also to any project you undertake, whether it be a project around your home, in your business, or with one of your hobbies.

The Personal Process of Creation describes how you get anything done and learning it will guide you in any project from the initial idea to the concrete, tangible reality.

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For instance, my Personal Process of Creation is to spend time in quiet thought analyzing what feels right to me first before making a decision. While other people are jumping ahead with a ready/fire/aim approach, I’m usually hanging back slow to warm up, testing the waters… A lot of this is going on for me unconsciously, I think.

But pretty quickly, I’m also starting to collect data and research my ideas. I’ve noticed I tend to move through these two stages in tandem. I’m still thinking and analyzing what is right for me while I research and gather information about what I’m working towards.

Then comes my favorite part–the actual manifesting in the manifesting process. This is something empaths tend to be quite good at. We tend to have a greater sense of our intuition that we can use to co-create our desires in synchronous ways.

And then finally, we need to take action. We need to identify the little things we can do every day that will lead us to what we’re working towards. This is often tricky for empaths. Once you take your ideas out of your head and into the world, you’ll start to get feedback from others and face distractions that can be overwhelming. This doesn’t mean that you need to stop moving forward or that you can’t. It just means that you need some support and tools. Having knowledge about your Personal Process can help here, whether this is your weak area as an empath or not.

If you’d like to learn more about the Personal Process of Creation and discover yours, Jackson and I are hosting a free webinar tomorrow called The Art & Science of the Creative Process. Even if you can’t make it live, a replay will be sent to you if you sign up.

You can get on the list here:

http://bit.ly/1JRI6ae

Do you have any guesses about what your Personal Process of Creation might be or how it could help you to know? Do you think empaths have a different process than most people? Leave a comment below and let me know what you think!
Will you be joining us on the webinar? I would love to see you there!
May 212015
 

Something I’ve noticed about myself is that I have a process for working towards what I’m creating. It’s the same process I use whether I’m manifesting something I desire or using a step by step plan to meet goals.

And it makes me laugh, because I’ve always felt like this process was actually kind of “wrong”.

See, when most success experts give advice, they usually just tell you to take “massive action” or something of that nature. They tell you to just starting doing things physically (the right things, of course) to get what you want quickly.

But in this interview I did with Jackson Holiday Wheeler, we discuss another way…

Now don’t get me wrong. I agree that taking action is absolutely necessary and, of course, I do take action. But something about that advice in general has never resonated with me. Looking back on things I’ve wanted to create or try, there always seems to be a “dream state” of sorts for me. A time when I’m pondering, writing down ideas, doing a lot of thinking, and collecting information. I’m reading books, watching videos, absorbing information like a sponge. And not quite doing anything with it…for a time.

And I notice this time, and I have felt guilty about it. I wonder sometimes what is wrong with me when I spend so much time in this state, not feeling ready to act yet. I guess it shouldn’t be a surprise, considering I’m the kind of girl who likes to ease into a pool rather than jump in off a diving board.

But now I*completely* understand why I do this, and I understand that it’s actually an essential part of my unique and natural process. It’s not the creative process that’s right for everyone—for some people, immediate massive action is a more natural place to start. But *my* process is right for me. And just because it’s different from the “typical” fast-moving advice, doesn’t mean that it has to hold me back either.

Even though I’ve noticed myself doing this for years, it didn’t feel like a “valid” process until I learned about my Personal Process of Creation. This is a process that my friend and colleague Jackson Holiday Wheeler discovered and recently shared with me.

Jackson and I met while traveling through Kurdistan on an amazing trip his father led back in 2008. It was also around this time that I met his mother Rebel Holiday, who explained the Harmony Patterns to me. The Harmony Patterns are patterns that she noticed in people. She found that by looking at skin tone and facial features, she could determine that certain colors and shapes are more flattering for a specific person. Over the years, she discovered that these patterns go far deeper than just being a tool to figure out your best colors to wear (which is very valuable in and of itself). These patterns also relate to our personalities, our essences. And yes, they are a part of how we create, manifest, and reach our goals. They relate to how we appear on the outside, but also to who we are on the inside. Years later, Jackson discovered that your creative process is directly connected to your Personal Harmony Pattern, and the Personal Process of Creation was born.

Knowing my Personal Harmony Pattern and Personal Process of Creation has helped me get out of my own way and allow more ease of movement in my life. To enhance my outer appearance, I know which colors and shapes best accentuate my true essence. This helps me express my authentic nature and signal out into the world that much stronger (and avoid colors and shapes that are overpowering or make me look sickly). And on the inside, this has helped me have more patience and acceptance for my process, so I don’t waste valuable mental energy feeling guilty about it. It also means that I know where my weak points are. For instance, I’m more likely to get distracted or rush through my action-taking phase of creation. Now that I know this, I can consciously enhance this crucial phase in just the right way, so I am that much closer to creating what I desire.

If you’re curious about what *your * Personal Process of Creation might be and want to know a little more about these Harmony Patterns I’m talking about, I invite you to check out this interview I did with Jackson. In this interview, he shares how he and Rebel made these discoveries and talks a little about the science behind it.

At the end, he also goes into detail about *my* Personal Harmony Pattern and Personal Process of Creation. So if you’re feeling curious and a little voyeuristic, definitely check this out! You’ll get a good idea of what knowing your Personal Harmony Pattern and Personal Process of Creation can mean for you, your manifesting, and your creative process.

If you’d like to learn more, join us for a free webinar this Thursday, May 28th at 12 PM and 5 PM Eastern. It’s okay to sign up even if you can’t make the live webinar. We’ll send you a replay available for two days following the webinar either way :)

You can sign up for the webinar here –>http://bit.ly/1JRI6ae

And here is a helpful hand-out you can download to follow along and take notes with: http://bit.ly/1QabIiT

Have you noticed that you have a personal process for the way you manifest and set goals? Does it differ or mirror typical advice? Leave a comment–I’d love to know what you think!

 

 

Apr 172015
 

When it comes to your  holistic business or any project you’re working on, of course it’s important to stay in the flow and keep the momentum going.

But what if you’ve taken some time off to focus on a second job or business? Maybe to study, have a child, take care of a family member, or just get clear about which direction you’re heading?

Jumping back into your business after being away for a few months can be daunting.

What if your vision of who you are and the work you do has changed? How do you pick up from where you left off?

You may have noticed that I’ve been MIA for a few months here on the blog. Last December, I felt inspired to move back to Philly from the surburbs (what I call like to call the country). Within weeks of feeling that inspiration and trying a new manifesting technique, I effortlessly manifested my ideal apartment!

Ideal for me, because the price was right in a beautiful neighborhood with a private garden and some newly renovated additions.  Plus a good friend and colleague lives right upstairs from me. The whole experience was so amazing I almost can’t even believe it, but this cute little home is now my reality.

Here's one of my windows with some of my favorite little art pieces. I'm looking forward to creating a garden view out the window as the weather gets warmer!

Here’s one of my windows in my new home with some of my favorite little art pieces. I’m looking forward to creating a garden view out the window as the weather gets warmer!

The move combined with winter holiday craziness and spending time with family kept me pretty busy and didn’t leave me much time to share here on the blog. But I’m feeling settled in now and ready to reach out again.

Since our insides always show up in our outside reality like a mirror, it was inevitable that I would receive this question from a client in a similar situation.

Here’s what she shared with me:

I’m starting to feel like I have the energy to focus on my business again, and I would love to find a few clients. I have been almost completely absent on social media since I started my new job.

Do you think it’s a good idea for me to send out a newsletter or write a blog post explaining what I’ve been up to? Let people know that I’m still out there?

And of course, my answer to that question is YES! And it’s my own advice to myself as well.

There are many changes I want to make to my blog and many offerings I want to start sharing with you.

How to jump into this new overwhelming vision? Baby steps… It starts here with this letter to you and my answers to this question.

Here are 3 things I’m doing to “jump back” in, even though it feels a little awkward and scary after being away for a few months:

1) Pick one small thing you can do (not the ideal perfect thing) and DO IT!

If making a video feels overwhelming, write a blog post. If you’ve got writer’s block, set a timer and just start writing even if it’s just for a little bit and even if it’s not perfect. Perfection is the enemy here.

2) Create a solid vision of what you want your business to be now. Workbook

Visions are always evolving, but knowing what you want now is important. I started reinventing my vision using my Conscious Business Workbook. This is a workbook I created to share with private clients to help them create their business visions. It’s full of prompts to start asking the questions that guide you to the answers you’re looking for. Whenever I’m considering a change in direction, I come back to these questions in my workbook. In addition to that, I use creative visualization. I see myself doing the things I want to be doing and feel into them as much as possible, so the experience starts to feel real for me.

3) Reach out for support.

My client was feeling awkward about blogging again and reaching out to her community after being away for a few months. She reached out to me and wanted some feedback about her idea to share with her community. I was happy to provide that support for her and to see her start building her momentum again by writing a blog post about what she’s been up to.

And since I was needing some support myself, I connected with my friend and mastermind partner Flo Bradley, for an invaluable conversation! After an hour of catching up and her sharing some ideas and feedback, I was ready to “jump back” in and start writing.

So, if you’re feeling that you’re at a crossroads now and rethinking your vision before you jump back in, don’t hesitate to reach out for support! Just putting a voice to what you’re thinking and feeling and getting feedback from other people sounds really simple, but it’ s HUGE. Reach out to a friend, a colleague, a Coach, a therapist, a family member–don’t feel like you have to figure this out alone!

Have you ever been in this position where you’ve had to jump back in after taking a break?

What are some things you’ve done to make the transition easier? If you can relate, please leave a comment below and share any tips you have.

If you’re looking for support and are curious about my Conscious Business Workbook or using creative visualization to create your new vision, I’d be happy to meet with you for a free Discovery Session. Whether we end up continuing to work together or not, it’s still a way for you to get some support. You can email me about that at Christina@CoachingWithChristina.com.

Oct 202014
 

Coaching Page Meditation Picture

Mindfulness is a word we’re hearing increasingly often, because of its value for managing a variety of physical and mental health problems.

However, what does being mindful mean and how can mindfulness help us attain greater wellness?

Understanding Mindfulness

The principle of mindfulness comes from Buddhism and was designed to help followers understand themselves, train their minds for the better, and free themselves of unhelpful thoughts that hold them back.

It is possible to do this by focusing on our thoughts, feelings, and environment in the present moment, without distraction to the past or future, and not judging the way we think or feel.

There are four main aspects of mindfulness:

1) Increase attention regulation to focus on an item to avoid distractionlife coach phoenixville pa

2) Increase body awareness to concentrate on an internal feature like breathing, to make us more familiar with ourselves.

3) Practice emotion regulation to acknowledge our emotions and not react to them.

4) Change the perspective we have of ourselves to foster the idea that change is possible, and this can promote a better outcome.

Benefits of Mindful Practices

When we allow ourselves to be more mindful, we promote better physical wellness by adopting healthier habits. For instance, eating mindfully encourages healthier food choices and more restraint over portion sizes, which helps us to take control of our weight. Adopting mindful principles is also useful when it comes to managing pain, with this technique known as an effective way to control chronic back and neck pain. Areas of our mental well-being that can benefit include reduced stress and anxiety, improved mood, enhanced memory, better concentration, and a greater ability to learn. We can take advantage of mindfulness in our personal lives too, as being more mindful strengthens relationships and helps us to understand others better.

Note: This article is a quick summary of a longer article published here

By the way, what are your thoughts on Mindfulness?

Do you have a Mindfulness Practice of your own, or any helpful tools or experiences to share?

I would love to hear from you! Leave a comment below and share :)

(This Article was contributed by Julie)