Articles


 
Love Your Body, Free Your Mind
11 ways to snap out of autopilot and get back in touch with your body.

By Elisha Goldstein and Stefanie Goldstein - April 28, 2016
(original artical can be found at www.mindful.org/love-your-body-free-your-mind)

Often we get so caught up in planning and daydreaming and constructing stories that we forget we even have a body. What's happening in our bodies is as here-and-now as it gets, so take some time to check in and notice your body. It'll help you pop out of autopilot, develop more awareness, and make better choices.

1. Know your body

A simple body scan is a great way to tap into the power of your body. Lay down, close your eyes, and get curious about the sensations you're feeling - like tingling, warmth, coolness, tension - and become intimate with them as they shift and change from your feet to your head.

2. Cut stress with regular check-ins

Throughout the day our bodies tend to accumulate stress. Do hourly checkins, taking a deep breath and noticing where tension arises - maybe in the brow, jaw, shoulders, or abdomen. Allow the tense places to soften as you breathe, then stretch and adjust your posture.

3. Savor the good

We often feel our emotions, both positive and negative, in our bodies. The next time you feel good, notice how this manifests physically. Does your body feel relaxed? Is there warmth in your chest, or a slight smile across your face? Becoming aware of positive emotions allows us to broaden our momentary perspective and spark positive reactions, like the urge to savor and appreciate beautiful scenery or the impulse to play. Inevitably this builds greater personal resources. This process is what researcher Barbara Frederickson has coined "The Broaden and Build Theory."

4. Raise your emotional intelligence

Listen to the moment-to-moment clues your body gives you about how you're feeling. By simply noticing these clues, you'll gradually increase your emotional intelligence - which is your ability to understand and manage your emotions.

5. Be like Superman!

Social psychologist Amy Cuddy's research shows us that certain poses can actually increase confidence and reduce stress. Try standing like Superman, with your back straight, chest upright, heart open, and hands at your waist - then hold for two minutes.

6. Revel in daily tasks

Our brains are wired to make daily tasks into routine actions so we can focus on novel activities. But when we bring curiosity and awareness to simple tasks, like washing dishes or taking a shower, the mundane comes alive again. Next time you shower, for example, notice how the water feels on your skin, the sweet smell of the shampoo, the sound of droplets falling. It might just be the best shower you've ever taken!

7. Tune your heart

An essential component of well-being is nurturing a loving heart, and we can use the body to do this. Take one or two hands and place them on your heart, think of someone who makes you smile, and in your mind wish them well.

8. Feel your center

The abdomen is often called "the core" of the body and we can use it for strength and grounding. If you're feeling stressed or anxious, take one or two hands and place them on your belly. Then take a few slow deep breaths, noticing how they ground you.

9. Move your body

Most us spend too much of the day sitting, so naturally our bodies get stiff. This encourages tension, stress, and stuckness. By moving your body - changing your posture, opening up your chest, doing gentle twists, or sun salutations - you become more present.

10. Laugh it out

A study out of Loma Linda University showed that laughing for short periods of time can help us reduce stress and increase short-term memory. Another study out of the University of Maryland showed that laughter can protect against heart disease. Spend more time with people who make you laugh and doing things that make you laugh. Plus, laughter is contagious, so when you laugh, you are positively impacting the world.

11. Smile wide

Like laughter, a half-smile sends a signal to the brain that something good is happening. Experiment with gently smiling throughout the day and see how it feels.


A Box of Simple Advice

The body gives us a way to identify emotions, so we can practice self-compassion toward negative emotions and learn to savor positive ones. We can activate our biological healing process and open the door for happiness. The next time you notice a strong difficult emotion arising, try this SAFE practice:

S: Soften the muscles of your body

A: Allow the body to be as it is without a need to fix anything

F: Feel any emotions in your body. Ask yourself what you need: To feel safe, to accept yourself as you are, to find inner strength.

E: Expand your positive intentions to all people everywhere. You might say, "May all people feel safe, be strong, be happy."

 
 
Depth of Hypnosis

One of the things that people who are beginning to use self hypnosis often say to me is that they are worried they did not enter into hypnosis because they were expecting to be in a complete state of oblivion, losing total awareness of everything that was going on around them. I imagine that this is where some people's fear of losing control while in hypnosis comes from.

In reality there are many levels of consciousness that individuals experience when in hypnosis. It is true that (usually) with a lot of practice with self hypnosis, or if you were having a session in my office, then you could enter a very deep hypnotic state in which your attention of focus would be completely inward and not on your external environment.

However, for most people during self hypnosis, and for when working with me in my office, awareness of the external environment will remain.

I explain it to clients that it is as if they were lying by a swimming pool or lake on a hot day with their eyes closed, just being with their own thoughts or "zoned out" as we say.

Some part of your mind is still likely aware that there is a gang of kids splashing about in the shallow end and another group over on the grass playing Frisbee but we just don't care. May be you are choosing to focus much more on the feeling of the sun on our skin, or the fragrance of the summer flowers around us, etc.

Depth not the goal

For much good work to be done "depth" of hypnosis, or the subjective experience is not the goal. The important thing to remember is the outcome of the process,the result i.e. what happens after the sessions.

Many experienced hypnotist will confirm that people can have both surface and deeply internal hypnotic experiences and that both states produce positive results. It is the result that matters and not necessarily the depth of the hypnotic state that is the determining factor in this regard.

The more important thing to keep in mind is the power of self hypnosis. The more you allow it to work and expect it to work the better your results will be.

How to measure

However, for those who insist on wanting to know more about the "depth" of hypnosis that they experience here is an easy way to measure it for yourself. With a little practice this method becomes very reliable.

I should note that this method is for self comparison only. It is OK and can be useful to use it to measure your own progress but is not designed for two people to compare their results.

The method works because of course the subconscious mind knows the depth of hypnotic state that it is in. The goal of this method is to bring that information into the conscious mind. Here is how to do that.

While you are in hypnosis, imagine a measuring scale that looks like a yardstick. Measured out along the vertical yardstick is a scale marked from 1 down to 20 and next to the scale is a movable arrow that can point at any one of the numbers on the scale. The numbers themselves represent your hypnotic depth.

Now whenever you wish to measure your depth, picture this scale in your mind's eye. Imagine it in a vertical position with its pointer free to float up and down the scale.

It will be helpful to imagine the pointer as having a very "springy" or bouncy action at first prior to its finally coming to rest on some number on the scale. This number indicates the depth of hypnosis you are now in at that moment.

To measure effectively do not consciously pic a number at which you think the pointer should stop. Just imagine it bouncing up and down until it slowly settles on a number of its own accord. Practice this a few times and you will end up with a reliable and valid result each time.

I want to end up on this brief look at "depth of hypnosis" with the reminder though that the actual depth of hypnosis is nowhere near as important as regular and correct practice. Persistence leads to desired results.

Here's to your success,
Stephen Gruber MA
Consulting Hypnotist
Montreal
www.ask-the-hypnotist.com/depth.html

 
 
Power Of Positive Thinking
Research is beginning to reveal that positive thinking is about much more than just being happy or displaying an upbeat attitude. Positive thoughts can actually create real value in your life and help you build skills that last much longer than a smile.

You can read the entire articles at Huffington Post

 
 
Cure for Social Anxiety
People looking for a cure for social anxiety are typically suffering from a well defined set of symptoms. Can you relate to any of the following?

Persistent, intense and chronic fear of being watched and judged by others.
A similar intense fear of being embarrassed of humiliated by your own actions.
This fear may be so severe that it is interfering with work or school, and other ordinary activities. Physical symptoms often accompany the intense anxiety. These symptoms include:

Blushing,
Profuse sweating
Trembling
Nausea, and
Difficulty talking
In short, social anxiety is defined as being overwhelmingly anxious and excessively self-conscious in everyday social situations.

Unable to Overcome Social Anxiety

While many people with social anxiety at this level (a phobia) realize that their fears about being with people are excessive or unreasonable, they are unable to overcome them. Even if they manage to confront their fears and be around others, they are usually very anxious beforehand, are intensely uncomfortable throughout the encounter, and worry about how they were judged for hours afterward.

Social phobia can be limited to one situation (such as talking to people, eating or drinking, or writing on a blackboard in front of others) or may be so broad (such as in generalized social phobia) that the person experiences anxiety around almost anyone other than the family.

Social anxiety phobia affects about 15 million adults in America alone. Women and men are equally likely to develop the disorder, which usually begins in childhood or early adolescence.

Cure for Social Anxiety

Using hypnosis can be a powerful and effective cure for social anxiety. Through hypnosis you can allow your subconscious mind to let go of old, unhelpful socializing patterns and adopt new and fruitful patterns which will make your social life immensely more enjoyable and rewarding.

Using hypnosis, shyness can melt away, creating new patterns which will enable you to experience real social ease and go beyond just putting on a good performance.

What to Expect

Using hypnosis you can expect to start:

Surprising yourself with your spontaneity with other people
Feel so much more relaxed in all kinds of social situations,
Notice that your old anxiety just doesn't seem to happen any more,
Really start to enjoy socializing.

Here's to your success (and your new enjoyable social life),
Stephen Gruber MA
Consulting Hypnotist
Montreal
www.ask-the-hypnotist.com/depth.html

 
 
Post Hypnotic Suggestions

It's easy enough to understand how you can receive a post hypnotic suggestion when you are having a session with a professional Hypnotist. For example, the Hypnotist could suggest to you "that every time you see the colour red after you leave my office your confidence to succeed will grow stronger."

But how do you do this effectively in self hypnosis? Good question, after all you want to be as efficient and as effective as you can with the time you invest in your session.

Today we look at one way of how to give these important suggestions.

Post Hypnotic What?

First let's define what is meant by a post hypnotic suggestion.

Quite simply, it is a suggestion established during hypnosis that will go into effect after your self hypnosis session is over. Another example of such a suggestion would be, "Whenever I say or think the sentence, I concentrate completely on my work as soon as I sit down at my desk and say "Study now" (This of course is a great use of hypnotic suggestion for students).

Well, the first key to success is not to "tell" it to yourself during hypnosis as if you were the hypnotist. Rather, you develop ways of imagining the suggestion to yourself. Your subconscious mind is far more receptive to you imagining. Talking to yourself tends to disrupt the process.

How to give a post-hypnotic suggestion

Here is one way of doing this effectively in a self-hypnosis session.

1. Write down the suggestion, or suggestions, that you want to give yourself on a sheet of paper. Make sure to edit the suggestions along the guide lines given in a previous edition of the bulletin.

2. Neatly fold the paper on which the edited suggestions have been written.

3. Now, hold the folded paper in one of your hands during your self hypnosis session. The folded piece of paper acts as a trigger for the suggestion to be accepted by your subconscious mind.

4. After your self hypnosis session use the key sentence contained in the suggestion to test your subconscious mind's response to it. If the effect is not quite to to your liking then repeat the exercise. Persistence will bring its rewards.

Here's to your success,
Stephen Gruber MA
Consulting Hypnotist
Montreal
www.ask-the-hypnotist.com/depth.html

 
 
New Year Resolutions

Most people will fail to keep their New Year's resolution. You may be depressed by this news but of course you are not surprised if you are one of the many who have tried before to turn over a new leaf on January 1 and failed.

Does it have to be like this? Not at all. You need to learn a little more about how to make personal changes stick that's all. Here are the top 4 mistakes I see people make all the time in my profession as a Consulting Hypnotist at the Queen Elizabeth Health Complex in Montreal, and how to avoid them.

I 'll take the classic resolution of losing weight but it could be anything else from becoming a non-smoker to doubling your income next year.

Mistake #1: Making a resolution to change because you feel you “should” or some one else wants you to.

Solution: Only make a resolution to change if you really want to make that change yourself. Be clear on why you want the change. It won't work if you are making the attempt just because someone else wants you to or you feel it is just something you “should” do.

Mistake # 2: Choosing only a vague goal such as “I will lose weight?”

Solution:Get specific: Specify how much weight you want to lose, by when etc.?

Mistake #3: Not really believing your goal is possible, e.g. You want to but can you really believe that you will lose those 50 lbs?

Solution: Can you imagine losing 2 lbs a week or 4.5 ounces a day? Break your goal down to smaller steps that you can imagine achieving.

Mistake #4: Here's the big one, thinking that you will make a lasting change of a deep seated habit by sheer willpower.

Solution: You overeat, smoke or don't exercise due to the irrational reasoning of your subconscious mind, not the logical thinking of your conscious mind. Willpower, a function of your conscious mind, will not overcome the irrational programming of your subconscious mind in the long run.

For example, if you have a strongly held subconscious belief that “It is wrong to waste food,” you will soon be back at your overeating habit however hard you try to resist.

Rationally (the logic that drives your conscious mind) you know that you will not lose weight while continuing to be a member of the clean plate brigade but you keep on cleaning that plate and having second helpings too if there is any food left. Now that's irrational behavior if you want to lose weight.

You need to work at the level of your subconscious mind because that's where the problem really exists. When you practice hypnosis, (whether self hypnosis or with a professional Hypnotist) that is what you are doing; Communicating directly with your subconscious mind to change the dysfunctional programming there.

Give yourself a real chance at change this year. I will help you – go download the free self hypnosis Mp3 on my site NOW. There are no catches; I want you to succeed.

Happy and Successful New Year, you can make it happen if you take action now!

Stephen Gruber MA
Consulting Hypnotist
Montreal
www.ask-the-hypnotist.com/depth.html

 
 
Stop Smoking Health Benefits
The Surgeon General of the United States reports several significant health benefits for people who quit smoking. These include:

Within 20 minutes of quitting your heart rate drops,
12 hours after quitting your carbon monoxide levels drop back to normal,
2 weeks to 3 months from quitting your heart attack risk begins to drop and your lung function begins to improve,
1 to 9 months after quitting your coughing and shortness of breath begins to decrease,
1 year after quitting your risk of coronary heart disease is half that of a smoker,
5 years after quitting your stroke risk is reduced to that of a non-smokers 5-15 years after quitting,
10 years after quitting your cancer death rate is about half that of a smokers. Your risk of cancers of the mouth, throat, oesophagus, bladder, kidney and pancreas decreases,
15 years after quitting your risk of coronary heart disease is back to that of a non-smoker's.

To discover more about the Phoenix Smoking Cessation Program, click here.

 
 
Distractions in Self Hypnosis
Some people starting out with self hypnosis will ask me how to best deal with distractions in their environment. Often there might be the sound of buses going by, someone hammering, or people talking perhaps just when you want to do your daily session. None of these, or any other thing going on where you are doing your self hypnosis, has to distract you from your practice. In fact, they can help you enter into an even deeper state of hypnosis.

All you have to do is to approach the situation with an an "accepting" state of mind. This approach is very helpful for when we want to do any kind of transformational work. And how do you adopt and develop this accepting state of mind? Couldn't be easier.

First, accept the fact that there is a dog barking or carpenters hammering or whatever is going on in your environment. You can not control it, the dog is barking. Now if you consider the barking sound to be bad, thinking it is an annoyance, then it will indeed be detrimental to your hypnosis session.

However, recalling the rule that, "what the mind expects tends to be realized" you can easily turn this, or any other potential distractions, to your advantage. The best thing to do is to tell your mind that the sound will help you go deeper. Try it. It really works in a very powerful way.

You can go a step further and use this same basic approach for anything that could be potentially distracting. For example, you could tell your mind as you enter into self hypnosis that everything you feel, hear, smell, think or imagine on any level is just going to help you go deeper into a wonderful state of relaxation and peace. Now there are no distractions, only aids to you going deeper into hypnosis.

 
 
Change Your Thoughts, Change Your Life
Our minds work on two levels, the conscious and subconscious.

The conscious mind is the part of your mind that is responsible for logic and reasoning. If i asked you about the sum of one plus one it's your conscious mind that is going to be used to make that addition.
The conscious mind also controls all the actions that you do on intention while being conscious. For example, When you decide to make any voluntary action like moving your hand or leg it is done by the conscious mind.
The conscious mind is also known to be the gate keeper for the mind.

The subconscious mind is the part of your mind responsible for all of your involuntary actions. Your breathing rate and heart beats are controlled by your subconscious mind.
If you started to control your breath on intention then know that your conscious mind took charge while if you were breathing without being conscious of the breathing process then know that your subconscious mind is in charge.
Your emotions are also controlled by your subconscious mind. That's why you sometimes might feel afraid, anxious or down without wanting to experience such a feeling.

When you are born, your mind is a clean slate. It is a sponge for discovery.
What are my senses telling me? Should I be afraid? If I'm afraid, should I fight or run? Was I happy, when I blew out the candles and ate my birthday cake?

Scientists know that the subconscious puts all these patterns together and forms deeply held beliefs - if I see or experience this, then that happens.
Some of our experiences are positive, others negative. All of these experiences - especially in our early years, are stored in the subconscious mind and accepted as a pure truth - even though we might not understand or have misinterpreted the outcome.

These now automatic beliefs form our responses to life events such as, "I'm stressed, I need a cigarette" or "it's time to relax in front of the television, so I need a bowl of potato chips" or "I can't score better on that test, because I'm not good at math."

Our subconscious, programmed with our automatic beliefs, is very resistant to change. The conscious mind may logically decide to diet, quit smoking, or exercise more. And, while we may achieve short-term success, we face strong internal resistance because we haven't changed our internal programming. Our new habits don't feel natural and we can't overcome what we've learned over time. That's why after a few tries, we often give up, and return to our original routines.

Hypnosis provides the path to have a conversation directly with the subconscious to substitute new, positive thoughts such as, "I'm going to relax in front of the television and not want a snack" or "I'm stressed, so I'm going to go for a walk."

All of this explains why researchers, including scientists at the National Institutes for Health, the Mayo Clinic, the American Psychological Association, and other recognized medical organizations support the beneficial and positive outcomes that hypnosis can provide.

 
 
Truth About Stress Relief

Just as a sponge absorbs water, your subconscious mind will soak up soothing hypnotic suggestions.
Train your brain to yield spontaneous relaxation, helping you to create a dynamically healthy body.

I'm sure you have heard such conversations as, "I was planning to exercise today, but I've been too busy at work, just too stressed out."
Or, "My car broke down. My whole time schedule is off. It's ruined my entire day! I'm so stressed!"

How such people respond to events in their lives has a serious impact on their ability to manage stress.
This is because most people consider stress a part of life that happens to them (FALSE - events that can cause stress are part of life), and believe there is nothing they can do about it (FALSE - we can change how we react).

Whether we like it or not, stress is natural to the human condition.
Yet stress can be either a motivator or a killer, depending upon how we respond to it.

Most folks do not recognize that having stress is a choice.
Stress is not what happens to us.
Stress is created by how we respond to our experiences.
Even positive, exciting encounters can be experienced as stressful.
The holidays are a perfect example.
Some folks dread the holidays and will say it's the most stressful time of the year.
Others will get misty eyed while speaking of holiday peace, joy, and togetherness.
Who's right and who's wrong?
Obviously neither.
The holiday season became what they each chose it to be.

You Do Create Your Own Reality.

Change your thoughts, change your life.



 
 
 
Contact Ty Arnold
Board Certified Hypnotist
  Ty@ChangeCoachTy.com



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When you make a choice you change the future.

-- Deepak Chopra
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