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Listening to Shame

Posted on by Helen Harding

I love a TedX talk and this one is by Brené Brown who always brings a warmth and amazing sense of humour to her talks.

If you haven’t watched Brené’s talk on the Power of Vulnerability, where have you been?  This is one of my favourite talks and you can watch it here.

“Vulnerability is the birthplace of innovation, creativity and change.”  Brené Brown

In this film, Brené talks about shame, which she has researched for years.  She shares that shame is the unspoken epidemic in our society, and behind many forms of broken behaviour.

Shame is the swamp land of the soul and you need to walk through it and find a way around it.

Shame is the gremlin that points out all the reasons why you shouldn’t…

Shame drives ‘not good enough’ and ‘who do you think you are?’

Shame thrives on secrecy, silence and judgement and Brené explains that the antidote to shame is empathy.  I hope you enjoy this talk.

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Lightning Process London: 18 Why you NEED to make yourself a priority

Posted on by Phil Parker

london podcastKate and Phil on why this is SO important

 

The podcast dedicated to answering your questions about the LP and giving you deeper insights into what it is and what it can do.  Hope you find it useful and please send in any questions to us, Phil and the London team: Jacqui, Kate and Helen

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Lightning Process London: 17 – starting- and keeping – new habits

Posted on by Phil Parker

london podcastHelen and Phil discuss great ways to change habits

 

The podcast dedicated to answering your questions about the LP and giving you deeper insights into what it is and what it can do.  Hope you find it useful and please send in any questions to us, Phil and the London team: Jacqui, Kate and Helen

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Guilt and what to do about it

Posted on by Kate Gare

Have you discovered Helen Harding and Claire Brooker’s podcasts on www.lightningprocess.co.uk yet?  These are a fantastic free resource for you to listen to as often as you like. I thought it would be useful to remind our blog readers that you can find support and help on many difference topics from anxiety to pain and self-esteem to perfectionism.

Having just finished teaching the third day of the Lightning Process course today, the issue of guilt came up quite a lot. Here’s Helen Harding’s post from a while ago that introduces hers and Claire’s podcast about guilt.

Kate, Phil, Helen and Jacqui x

Podcast 44: Dealing with Guilt

S

Guilt is an emotional warning sign that most people learn through their childhood social development. Its purpose is to let us know when we’ve done something wrong, to help us develop a better sense of our behaviour and how it affects others and ourselves.

This is known as ‘healthy’ or ‘appropriate’ guilt because it serves a purpose in trying to help direct our moral or behavioural compass. It prompts us to re-examine our behaviour so that we don’t end up making the same mistake twice.

Unhealthy guilt’s purpose is only to make us feel bad about ourselves for no real legitimate reason.  This can be excessive in terms of feeling constantly guilty about what you have done, haven’t done, should have done, what someone else has done and the list goes on.

In this podcast we want to discuss how to deal with both.

Click here for the transcript…

 

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Do You Make Time For Play?

Posted on by Helen Harding

I’m inviting you to make time in your week for play.  That may seem a slightly odd suggestion but don’t underestimate the value of play.

Animals learn to survive through play when they are in the wild.  We’ve all seen the great nature programs where young cubs play fight, learning crucial skills to enable them to protect themselves and their families in the future.

Children learn through play and get to explore and expand their imagination.  Play allows them to use their logic and creativity to test out ideas and build new understanding.  These skills will serve them well in later life.

When as adults we give ourselves the opportunity to play, we can feel so alive.  We allow ourselves to express our individuality and find a place where we can gain new insights and perspectives.

“Play is the highest form of research.”  Albert Einstein

Play is also a great antidote to feeling (or dûing) stressed and overwhelmed.  You know those times when things start to go wrong, and it starts a chain reaction…you spill your drink, you drop your phone, you can’t get on top of your to-do list, you’re late for an appointment… and so it continues.

Take some time out to play.  Although this may seem counter intuitive, play is a perfect way to get back to being present, which will enable you to gain clarity and perspective.

Many great ideas are born when we are at play.  How often do you hear people commenting that they were inspired while in the swimming pool, or walking the dog?

“Almost all creativity involves purposeful play.”  Abraham Maslow

We build our strongest relationships with friends and family by taking the time to play together.  Businesses are starting to recognise the importance of play in being successful.  The building of strong relationships, productivity and creativity has prompted some amazing work environments that actively promote play.

“You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.”  Plato

Play can take many forms from sports to art and crafts, from cooking to travelling, from drama to gardening.  The key is finding the things that light you up and make more time for those in your life.

What step can you take today to introduce more play into your life?

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What makes you happy?

Posted on by Kate Gare

I’ve just bought some books on feelings to read to my two year old twins. One of them is gorgeous and teaches how it feels inside to be happy, to be sad, to be angry and to be excited. It teaches that all feelings are OK and valid and normal.

I was shocked that one of the books teaches that happiness is achieved by being nice to other people, by focusing on making them happy and not being mean. As I read it I became acutely aware that there was no mention of being kind to yourself, of loving yourself and being as generous to yourself as you are to other people.  If this book was published 40 years ago I could understand it, but it wasn’t, it was published only ten years ago and it’s so outdated.

Pretty much every adult I know is currently, or has been in the past, so tough on themselves, so scathing, so intolerant and, even if they are lovely to other people, it does not lead to happiness. Being generous, kind and caring to people around you, to family, friends as well as strangers is just part of how to be happy. Learning to be as generous, kind and caring to yourself if absolutely key too.

How generous, kind and caring are you to yourself?

What could you do today that would be even more generous, even more kind or even more caring? How about stopping that inner critic and accepting that you didn’t meet the deadline, that you forgot to do something, that your children were late for school, that you aren’t as prepared as you want to be for the meeting, that you had a second piece of chocolate cake? Try it and see what happens.

How about letting stuff that happened in the past go, just let it go, you can’t change it now? Try it and see what happens.

How else could you be generous, kind and caring to yourself today? What about tomorrow and the next day?

Much love,

Kate, Phil, Helen and Jacqui

x

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My Struggle with CFS by Polina

Posted on by Helen Harding

How it all began

I spent few years abroad, first in London, then in Mexico and Macedonia returning home to Russia two years ago.  Frequent flights and stress took their toll, after returning from Ibiza in September 2015, I caught a cold and fell ill for two weeks.  By the end of the month I recovered from the cold, but in October I began to notice that something strange was happening – even in the morning I woke up tired, and my eyes ached.

At first, as any resident of the metropolis, I did not attach any importance to this and continued to try to live normally.  But day, after day, fatigue was becoming stronger and other symptoms also occurred: eye pain intensified and cognitive dysfunction appeared.

Nobody reacted to my complaints, friends and colleagues advised me to take vitamins. But time passed and nothing helped.  I decided to go to the doctor after my close friend convinced me.

Trying to Get a Diagnosis

I felt that I had problems with immune system, so started with the immunologist.  I had a few tests for immune status, and based on their results the doctor of a private clinic diagnosed me – “secondary immunodeficiency.”  But the pills she prescribed did not have any effect.

In the New Year I went to my parents where I got worse.  All holiday I just lay there, I could not sleep or walk.  In desperation, I went to an appointment with a local neurologist.  The doctor said I was perfectly healthy.  And then advised me, as soon as possible to give birth.

Back in Moscow, I went to the Federal Institute for Immunology.  There, I was again sent for tests and was prescribed new drugs, but the symptoms still progressed.  Something always hurt: my head, my body, my eyes.  I began to experience insomnia, I either could not get to sleep, or woke up constantly.

Another immunologist suggested that I contracted parasites in Ibiza, and gave me common medical advice – to give birth. Then there was a neurologist, who advised me to move abroad. There was a paramedic who thought I had taken psychotropic substances in Ibiza.  There was a doctor of a private clinic, who prescribed antidepressants to improve my sleep pattern, those drugs, are prohibited as a narcotic abroad.  I decided not to go for them.  I also tried to go to the optometrist complaining of pain in my eyes. They advised various drops, which, however, turned out to be useless.

I saw so many doctors, I do not remember them all.  My ordeal lasted almost a year. During this time, I tried all kinds of medicines and collected the whole set of conditions that do not exist in the International Classification of Diseases: from vascular dystonia, to asthenia.

I lost my life with numerous travel, parties, surfing, lost many friends. In addition, it was very hard for me that I could not plan anything and everything is constantly missing.

Trying to be Active

In the beginning, I thought that perhaps the reason for my fatigue was bad physical shape. So, I start working on fitness twice a week.  I only lasted for a month. Then the doctor told me to do exercise in the morning. Once I tried and barely reached the subway, crying – it was so bad.  After that I gave up sports, until one of immunologists suggested I had problems with the vascular system.  Then I went to the swimming pool where the sessions were incredibly hard.  But I did not know what was happening to me, and was ready to try anything, just to get back to normal.

Despite this illness, I continued to go to work. I was incredibly lucky with my director and colleagues who were not only understanding, and reduced my workload, but also helped in the search for doctors.  Sometimes I thought of resignation, but to just lie at home – not an option for me.

Previously, I led a very active life, which I was not ready to give up.  Sometimes I went to recreational activities near home or work.  There was not much I could do at home either due to fatigue and eye pain so I could only lie there and talk on the phone.

The Reaction of Society

In our society we do not talk about illnesses.  If you have something wrong, there is a risk becoming an outcast.  But I decided to go the other way, and start to say that I need help.

I wanted to talk to my friends and request minimal assistance. Since my eyes hurt, I asked for help in finding doctors and information about possible diseases from the Internet.  Many agreed, but then, referring to work, disappeared from my life.  This happened quite often, and I still find it hard to live with.  But there were also heroes, who have supported me, looking for doctors around the world, and translating my medical tests.

Yet, oddly enough, one thing that helped was Tinder.  In the days when my eyes hurt not so much, this application was a major time killer.  During the year I talked with so many people – although I did not meet them.  I think that Tinder was invented to support sick girls: to spend time, and feel normal.

Being acquainted with other sufferers

Almost a year, I went through all the circles of hell the Russian state and private medicine, spent about half a million, but I got nothing.  So I decided myself to understand what’s going on with me.

At the beginning of the disease, I tried to find an answer to the question, what it is with me, on the Internet. The most common result of the search for my symptoms had a disease called “chronic fatigue syndrome”.  While in the west have long recognized a serious problem, in Russia, nobody believes in CFS.  Because of this, there are no doctors who could help. On the Internet, I found many forums of patients with this very illness.

Forums – depressing place, because the members are the people who were now able to find cure. Some commit suicide in the end. Honestly, I was occasionally thinking about it as well, but only as a way to calm myself  if the disease would progress and would become unbearable. The problem is that that patients with CFS have to live in complete uncertainty: no one knows how to treat you, and it is unclear how long your suffering will continue. This means that you cannot plan for the future, to start a relationship, change jobs.

My international life before CFS has left me a lot of contacts abroad.  Friends and acquaintances have helped me to contact the CFS patients from around the world.  Those often painted the horrors awaiting me in the future: “What, you do not have problems with digestion?  Wait, will start soon, “Do not know what brain fog?  Soon you learn.”  Some eventually developed intolerance to certain sounds and colours.  Others have a raised temperature, and they simply could not get out of bed.  Knowing it was hellish burden on the psyche.

On the search for an answer

I read almost everything that could be found on the Internet about chronic fatigue syndrome, and designed my treatment plan.

The forums periodically information appeared that helps on something called the Lightning Process.  Realizing that conventional medicine cannot help me, I decided to read about this program and the others available.

Independent reviews have been difficult to find, but they all talked about the amazing healing.  Of course, I was sceptical, when it seemed that my soul was sucked out by Dementors, I decided to trust non-traditional methods and enrolled in a Lightning Process training in London.  It was my plan A.

About training

I was interviewed and got to the training Lightning Process.  Apart from me, in the group were people with various problems.

In the classroom we talked about the neuroplasticity of the brain and how to create new neural connections.  During  three days of training my condition did not change, while others did.

I returned to Moscow upset, but, gathering my remaining willpower, I continued to apply the technique Lightning Process.  Five days after my return, suddenly I felt first signs of relief and it gave me understanding that LP actually works. By the end of next week, I was able to regain 70% of my health.

The first days I just could not believe it, and was constantly crying. It was almost impossible to believe that that this nightmare was finally over.  However, I still sometimes cry with happiness.

On my return to life

Now I am healthy again and I rarely use the Lightning Process. I still have some problems (such as sleep), but I think they will soon disappear. I will fly to the Caribbean for a vacation with the money returned from my cancelled trip to another doctors in San Francisco.

Definitely illness changed my life.  It seems to me that I’ll never suffer again in my life.  It feels like I have matured internally by another 20 years: it is easier to relate to many things, I am more stress resistant. I became even more confident. Of course, I had less friends now, but all of them are my heroes.

I realized how many people suffer from this disease when I created a support group on Facebook.  Unfortunately, not all of them have sufficient knowledge of English, or are able to pull themselves out from the disease.  So I would very much like, in addition to my main profession and job to become a coach and teach Lightning Process for Russian-speaking and Spanish-speaking people in the future.

This article was translated and edited from the original article appearing in the Russian Press.  Click here to read the full, original story.

 

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Lightning Process London: 16 – How I moved from sceptical to ready to take the Lightning Process

Posted on by Phil Parker

london podcastIn this edition Jacqui talks about how she felt about the LP when she first came across it, and what lead her to take the course.

 

The podcast dedicated to answering your questions about the LP and giving you deeper insights into what it is and what it can do.  Hope you find it useful and please send in any questions to us, Phil and the London team: Jacqui, Kate and Helen

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Breathe to Heal

Posted on by Helen Harding

Max Strom has spent 20 years teaching people to use breathing exercises to help their health.  This isn’t automatically breathing in and out that we all do to survive, but using breathing exercises to promote relaxation.

Daily practice can revolutionise your health, reduce anxiety and stress, and help aid restful sleep.  This exercise if is free to do, there are no side effects and you can do it anywhere.

In this TEDx Talk, Max shares a simple breathing exercise that you can do anywhere and find calm.

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Lightning Process London: 15 – Tools to move from stuck to flourishing with the Lightning Process

Posted on by Phil Parker

london podcastIn this edition Phil and Kate talk about tools to move from stuck to flourishing- a great way to start the new year

The podcast dedicated to answering your questions about the LP and giving you deeper insights into what it is and what it can do.  Hope you find it useful and please send in any questions to us, Phil and the London team: Jacqui, Kate and Helen

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