What is Mental Health?

Its world mental health day.

We each have our own minds …

mental-health-2019924_1920 (2)Having worked in mental health back in the early 90’s and then again recently, I am amazed at all the different diagnosis that have emerged!!! Previously schizophrenia and Bi Polar were typically the main diagnosis. Now we have more sub categories and a variety of mental health conditions affecting a large proportion of the population such as; Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Anxiety, Depression, Personality Disorders and Body Dysmorphic Disorder to name just a few. According to Mind; 1 in 4 people in the UK will experience some form of mental health issue each year, now that’s a lot of people!

One thing that has always fascinated me is “what is mental health“? Who’s to say this persons mind is healthier than that persons mind. After all we each have our own minds and are responsible for how we use them! Some people are aware of their mental health issues and others are not! It is for us alone to work through our own thought patterns, our belief systems, our repetitive thought process’, our paranoia, fears, anxieties and so on. Therefore I find the whole diagnosis a complex and fascinating subject. Take for example people who have been diagnosed with Personality Disorders/Borderline Personality Disorders (BPD), from my experience working with people who have BPD often come from a back ground of Trauma which usually relates to experiences/circumstances from their childhood .

Craniosacral Therapy (CST) works very well with trauma, as amongst other things it works directly with the nervous system, the fight or flight response which is activated by the sympathetic nervous system. It also works with the vagus nerve which is part of the parasympathetic “rest and digest” nervous system which influences our breathing, digestive function and heart rate, all of which can have a huge impact on a persons mental health, especially if receiving regular CST.

So when is intervention required? Now that is probably too big a question to answer here, however unless someone is a danger to themselves or others or in acute pain then a lot of the time there is a process to go through to unravel certain aspects relating to their emotional and mental well-being. There are times for medication and times where gentle alternative remedies can support someone such as Bach Remedies, Homeopathy, massage, Reiki, Yoga, healthy eating and of course my all time favourite Craniosacral Therapy.

On this note I would like to mention a couple of books which I feel may help people on their road to recovery. One is called ‘Waking the Tiger‘ by Peter A. Levine which is all about Healing Trauma and another book on a lighter note is ‘May the thoughts be with you‘ by Charlotte Reed. This book has lots of positive affirmations with wonderful illustrations, Charlotte also has weekly illustrations in the Evening Standard every Monday as well as her Facebook page and Instagram daily messages of positive thoughts which helped her overcome her own depression.

If in doubt always consult a medical professional for advice and referral if appropriate.

22279861_1515729851807146_5725443711646841531_n

 

Healing Modality

Can you heal me?

 

diego-ph-254975-unsplash

I thought I would write a little bit about Craniosacral Therapy (CST) as a healing modality. Yes it is a healing modality/therapy and in my books it is one of the most effective an deeply empowering forms of body work there is. This is due to the ability of the body’s own inherent healing capacity.

I would like to stress that it is the clients body that does its own healing, not the practitioner. I have notice that quite a few of my reviews on here and on my face book page make reference to me being a healer (and a very good one at that from all accounts!!), as flattered as I am with such wonderful statements, I feel it is important from a Craniosacral practitioners perspective that I clarify that it is not me who is healing the person on the table, I am holding a space for the persons body to be listened to, really listened to in a very unique way. The space that is held is safe, open, non judgemental and completely governed by the pace of the client. Basically this is the clients session and I am the facilitator.

On another note I would like to add that I do also have experience in energy healing, this is something that I carried out prior to my CST training. Now although when doing CST sessions I do not lend my focus to the other energy work that I do it would be unrealistic to not expect the healing knowledge held within my system to not be working in some capacity. For in truth everything is energy!

Overall the relational field between client and practitioner is key to providing that safe space for deep healing to take place and I am very happy to be able to offer that space for those willing to receive.

Nameste ❤

 

 

 

 

Innate Body Wisdom

Your body knows!!

I have a special interest in this topic, the topic of our innate body wisdom. Our bodies are designed to form. Its really a case of each cell, each DNA molecule and so on all knowing what they are meant to be doing, they are working together to create homeostasis within the collective structure of the human anatomy and physiology.

How is it that the cell of an elbow knows to form into that as opposed to the cell of a knee for example? Do they have consciousness? Are they somehow talking to each other? To be honest it really doesn’t matter (unless something goes wrong of course!) they just know!!! Trillions of cells, atoms, DNA nucleus or whatever you want to refer to are in constant communication all of the time, they are all working together in conjunction with one anothers systems of the human body. So the endocrine and lymphatic and so on are working individually in their own system however they are also working collectively to support all the other systems.

out-of-order

I just love this, we are walking miracles, complete universes within universes. Often when illness/disease manifests into form within the physical body its a way for the whole system to inform us that something isn’t working/functioning at its optimum. For example this can be through the elimination process, often this can be skin related conditions as toxin/emotions are being released through a detoxification process. Sometimes this can also be through conditions such as high blood pressure, cholesterol and so on and can even manifest as stress!! Look at what you are taking into your body as this is what feeds you, its not just the food and drink we consume its our emotions, words, thoughts and so on. Be mindful what you are feeding yourself. We work as a unified field of function where everything impacts on everything else. This is why I LOVE Craniosacral Therapy, it works with the whole. Not just one or two but all of the elements of the human system, mind body and soul.

The human body viewed from a holistic point of view has its remarkable own innate healing ability. When symptoms occur its often the bodies way of letting us know that something isn’t right, often when we go and take prescribed medication it can suppress the very thing that is trying to eliminate itself, thus suppression the process. I am not saying that taking western medication is wrong, there is clearly a need for some people and I would always suggest consulting a medical professional if symptoms are causing concern. However its good to also recognise the body talks to us and sometimes its only way is by presenting certain symptoms to get our attention. In the end the choice is always down to the individual.

The music in us

27657071_10155118317082213_7315539845701626369_n

Oh how I love music, and to be invited to go on my friend’s radio show to talk about the work I do was too good an opportunity to turn down!

Music plays a big role in my life, amongst the sheer enjoyment of listening to many genres it has always been a tool for me to work through my emotions either by listening to the depth of a Dire Straits solo guitar piece or through expression of bodily movement dancing the night away! Music has the capacity to reach any depth of emotion and supports us in releasing through its wonderful vibration.

I find during my craniosacral sessions that the body can display its own rhythmic motion through the craniosacral system. Here is a little example of this motion; video example

These days I often play beautiful soft inviting sounds such as this 639 Hz during my Craniosacral therapy sessions. A lot of my clients state that this type of  music offers a supportive gentle holding space for mind and body to settle into stillness thus supportive of the craniosacral experience.

So as I mentioned above I was invited onto my friend Billy Idle’s radio show (The Music Galaxy Radio – MGR) the other week to talk about Craniosacral therapy. He has a lovely little set up in the comfort of his own home which was a great way to experience my first ever live radio show. He plays some lovely music and always starts off with a Nightmares on wax tune, he also plays a little meditation section for listeners to unwind. Speaking about Craniosacral therapy felt like a natural part of his show. So for those of you looking for a new radio station which plays some great music.

Here is a link to last weekends show The Music Galaxy Radio – MGR

The Music Galaxy Radio - MGR
The Music Galaxy Radio – MGR

 

In stillness health can be found

river-2700909_1920

There is something to be said for ‘finding health in stillness‘. It is in this quiet place,this space of tranquillity, the motion in the sea where the waves stop crashing and the directions starts to sync; a calm stillness creates a gentle motion.

It is in this motion of fluidity that everything in the human physiological body can slow down and start to re-organise itself towards its own innate health.

This aspect of stillness is often referred to by clients of Craniosacral therapy, many of my clients state that they feel such a state of peace, tranquillity and stillness during and after sessions. Those that meditate say that they feel like they are able to sink deeper into stillness than when they meditate. Clients often describe being in that in-between state of sleep and awake. From a practitioners viewpoint, this is when the body is able to start to work towards health, it has the space to prioritises what areas it wants to work with and goes about re-organising, re-directing and re-aligning. Homeostasis is the body’s natural balance of bodily functions.

Many of us live such busy often stressful lives, often rushing from the minute we get up until the minute we go back to bed, even whilst trying to get to sleep the mind is often found to be going over the days events, regurgitating conversations, actions of yourself or others, how things could of or should of gone differently. It is so important to find time to be still, to be able to drop yourself out of the ‘monkey mind‘ and just breath-allow yourself to connect with the inner aspects of you, without all the noise.

People often come for Craniosacral therapy because they have some form of physical issues such as headaches or back pain, or longstanding problems both physical and emotional. Others come for ongoing support in their busy lives and for help to meet life’s challenges. Due to Craniosacral therapy being so gentle and non-invasive, it is suitable for everyone from newborns to the elderly. Mothers and babies often come for problems associated with difficult or traumatic births. Letting go of tension and fear held in the body enables both to settle into a calm state of being.

As stated in the tittle; In stillness health can be found.

Just a little short video emphasising the importance of stillness

Craniosacral therapy (CST) – supporting your system back to health

water-2045469_1920

Dillon’s story sends a powerful message on how he was able to find a road to recovery through CST after experiencing such a difficult and challenging time in his life. He developed viral meningitis out of nowhere which had a traumatic effect on his life. Often after someone has experienced such a life changing event it is how they manage after the incident in getting themselves back on track towards their own recovery that can be the most difficult time for them. Thankfully Dillon found CST which supported him back towards a state of balance and health.

Our bodies are extremely complex, we have so many systems within us such as the nervous system, lymphatic and  digestive to name a few (not to mention the outer fields such as the emotional/energy body) which all have to work together to maintain homoeostasis. Its easy to see how if one of these systems becomes stressed in anyway how it could impact the others and in turn create another system to overcompensate! CST works with the system as a whole integrated unit.

The practitioner holds a safe space for the persons systems to move into a state of balance and stillness, this offers a holding place for the bodies innate wisdom to start to move towards finding its own inner health. Dillon states this beautifully when he says he had never felt such peace and the feeling of spaciousness.

This video provides a clear example from Dillon of how Craniosacral therapy can support the body towards homoeostasis regarding a number of imbalances the body may experience.

I would like to thank Dillon for sharing his story and to Maria Dillon’s mother who gave me consent to post this, she is a wonderful caring woman who supported her son in being able to access this extraordinary healing modality.

Walking out of stress

Walking out of stress-make a commitment to managing your stress.

italy-1614931_1280

Stress seems to be one of the main issues in peoples lives today, it is unavoidable in our busy world and our bodies are designed to manage a certain amount of this stimulation. However sometimes we can become overwhelmed and unable to cope with life’s demands.

Extended periods of stress can start to produce symptoms which have an impact on our day to day life and if left untreated  may lead to further complications. I have experienced this myself, although interestingly enough I was not aware at the time that I was stressed, I kept going as I “believed” I had no choice (responsibilities, bills, rent, dependants etc).The impact of stress on my body which I endured during that time only showed itself years later! I’m not talking about minor stress symptoms such as tension headaches (although these can seem less than minor for the individual experiencing them) or neck and shoulder pain and difficulty sleeping I am talking about the real impact on a cellular memory.

It wasn’t until I listened to myself and the constant thoughts that I had to leave my job that my body was able to settle into a calmer state. This decision enabled me to start my inner nurturing and healing. Along my path Craniosacral therapy (CST) found me!! That’s another story! CST is a natural way of helping our bodies to rest and recover. CST is unique in its ability to treat the source of symptoms on every level, whether mental, physical or emotional. For the best results a series of treatments is recommended. My regular clients inform me that their bodies are able to open up to expression and begin working through various patterns for release, reorganising and correction.

Many of my clients  have said they find CST supports their symptoms of stress such as making them feel more relaxed and able to manage things better, sleeping better, less irritable, less overwhelmed and anxious to name but a few. CST works with the autonomic nervous system  which controls the organs, glands and smooth muscles of the body. It has a sensory feedback to the central nervous system, CST can help to regulate the nervous system and transform your stress response by listening and sensing what your body is expressing,this also helps you to build up your own inner resources that support your coping mechanisms towards health and vitality.

Craniosacral Therapy is not intended as primary healthcare but to work alongside the relationship you have with your doctor.

Here is a lovely little video describing how Craniosacral therapy can support the body during times of stress.