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Fall into Listening

There’s that crisp changed quality to the air right now. It’s almost not summer anymore. Everywhere you look in the New York area are signs of the life-death-life cycle – bursts of bloom and harvest in contrast to dying plants, the need for warmer clothing, students, teachers and workers trading in leisure time for tight schedules, mental focus, and perhaps physical discipline.

I’ve gotten a flurry of calls from new prospective clients. Many people feel a desire to make changes, improvements, attend to problems and goals that have been on the back burner for awhile. Some feel a sense of urgency, frustration, or sadness.

I think it’s a great time to be counter-intuitive and balance all this movement. If you’re willing, slow down, pay attention to nature, park the car farther away and walk. Maybe you can deeply listen to yourself and stop for a few minutes and listen carefully to others This attention can be deeply soothing for all of us in this very busy and changing time of year.

Center Yourself

What does this mean? In a lightning speed 5G world, centering is more vital than ever. Here are 2 simple techniques that you can use to easily shift into a focused and calm state of mind.

  1. Sit with spine straight and feet flat on the floor. Place one hand at the base of your skull – approximately the same level as your earlobes- and cradle your upper neck. Take a deep breath in and out. Place your other hand over your heart – center of the chest and a bit to the left. Now sit and breathe slowly and deeply for several minutes in this position. Eyes closed may enhance your process. Tune inward and notice how you feel. Slowly return to a waking state.
  2. Sit the same way as in technique 1, and focus all attention inward on your spine. An image may come to you. Perhaps you will feel the central axis of your body, or become very aware of your spine against your chair or sofa. You may repeat a word to yourself, such as ‘peace’, ‘surrender’, or ‘calm’. Breathe here for several minutes, and again, notice what’s happening for you, and come back into your waking day slowly, with respect.

Good Luck! I hope you find these techniques useful and life-changing!


I MAY NEVER STOP CRYING

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard the words, “If I start to cry, I may never stop”, spoken in my office.

People usually come into therapy with an idea, sometimes clear sometimes vague, of what is ‘wrong’, what needs to change or be eliminated completely.  This could be an unwanted behavior, feeling, physical ailment, or a difficulty that keeps showing up in a relationship.

As we work, it soon becomes obvious that the original ‘presenting problem’ (therapist lingo) was a lead into a multitude of feelings, opinions and beliefs held by different parts of that person, and created at different times in their life.

I work from the premise that the mind (yours and mine) is not unitary but composed of different parts of ourselves with varying needs, wants, agendas and burdens.  Whenever I’m invited into this inner system, I am respectful and pace the process according to the client’s system.  When we get to a hurt, angry or shamed part, one fear is that the release of trapped emotions may be unending.  Fortunately, that has never happened!  And the client’s Self and mine – the ones who hold compassion, wisdom and curiosity – can witness those vulnerable parts release long-held ‘baggage’ and make new choices.  Relief and new energy are the result.