Affirmations can change your life. In this video, Clinical Hypnotherapist Alena Guest walks you through the process of creating the right affirmation for the best results.
Making Resolutions that Work
An interview with Alena Guest at the MCTV studio in Fort Bragg, California filmed in January 2013.
In this interview I discuss how to make resolutions for the New Year and otherwise that work.
Click on the video below to view the full interview.
Fire and Ice by Alena Guest
A dear friend recommended the book, Sacred Moments by Linda Kavelin Popov. It's a collection of meditations on virtues. I've been beginning each morning lately by reading one.
Here's a recent example:
"I want to know how God created the world. I am not interested in this or that phenomenon. I want to know God's thoughts, the rest are details." That's what Albert Einstein said about creativity.
Twenty years ago, on the day before a major abdominal surgery, it dawned on me, that ANYTHING could happen. In other words, I faced the possibility of my own death. Somehow, by God's grace, I surrendered to it. What happened next is impossible to describe, but it was a most numinous moment that seemed to go beyond the boundary of the conscious mind. I knew that I am an integral part of the fabric of the universe. The idea that I am separate from anyone or anything is an illusion. It is the closest I've come to knowing God's thoughts. Though when I'm working with clients and they access their creative genius, within their super-conscious, that comes pretty close.
The Happiness Hypothesis
As Shakespeare said, “There is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so.” The way I relate to this quote is through the lens of hypnotherapy. It is exemplary of the way I interpret much of the most meaningful and wise information I encounter.
For instance, I'm reading The Happiness Hypothesis: Finding Modern Truth in Ancient Wisdom by Jonathan Haidt. Whether he's citing examples from-- the Bible, Buddha, the Upanishads, Confucius, the Koran. Ovid or Marcus Aurelius-- I find a correlation between each of these and the utility of the subconscious mind.
Personally, on this subject -- I have recently found that a sustained perception of happiness comes from within. In addition, the sensation of happiness that comes from outside oneself is ephemeral. The whole question of contentment or fulfillment seems linked to the meaning of our lives. As I've mentioned in an earlier blog, these are the subjects that interest me most now. I highly recommend Jon's book.
"Life's Third Act"
Inspired by reading Mary Catherine Bateson's, Composing A Further Life, I posted the previous blog.
Here you'll discover a video of Jane Fonda giving a compelling talk on the same subject, life's third act. She too was influenced by Ms. Bateson's ideas. Each of us has deep dreams. I believe that these "extra" years offer an opportunity, if we will only grab it, to realize that deferred dream.
Or as the poet, Langston Hughes said,
"What happens to a dream deferred?
Does it dry up like a raisin in the sun?
Or fester like a sore--- and then run?
Does it stink like rotten meat?
Or crust and sugar over-- like a syrupy sweet?
Maybe it just sags like a heavy load.
Or does it explode?"
My deepest dream has always been to write, because it's the thing I think I cannot do. What is yours?
My maternal grandmother died at age fifty, before I was born. Because the life expectancy of her generation was three decades less than it is now, those extra thirty years tacked onto my life are a gift.
The big question is - how I can I put those bonus years to the best use? For instance - should I be mining for ever deeper meaning, or making even greater contributions to the community? In this season, when we all take stock of the past year, as well as plan for the new year - New Year's resolutions, etc. - I am thinking about composing my life in a much broader way. Perhaps, beginning with what I still want to accomplish over the next two decades, and then work back from there.
Emerson said, "To know that even one life has breathed easier because you have lived, this is to have succeeded." About this I'm sure, before I'm done, I want to know that I've made a positive difference in many lives; and that the one life I have, has been spent doing what I came into this world to do.
Case Report for the Journal of the International Board of Hypnotherapy
HYPNOTHERAPY OUTPERFORMS ANTIEMETICS
Study by Alena Guest, Clinical Hypnotherapist
Though at present it is atypical for hypnotic intervention to be ordered in a critical care facility, as the following summary demonstrates, it may be the more effective strategy and a more cost effective approach than antiemetics, in the management of a case of
Mendocino Coast District Hospital, October 2010
A 32 year old female, in her eighth week of pregnancy, presents with hyperemesis gravidarum (morning sickness) with an onset of nausea, constant pain in her upper right quadrant, accompanied by severe vomiting. The nausea does not subside and the ongoing vomiting disallows food to be kept down, despite the administration of antiemetics, in the emergency room, over a twenty four hour period.
Her attending physician, orders an hypnotic intervention.
Upon arrival bedside, the staff hypnotherapist observes the patient as she complains, “ I'm afraid to eat... nothing stays down...I keep having dry heaves.” When asked where she is, on an analog scale of zero to ten, the patient answers,“ten.”
Because the patient is in a highly suggestible state ( breathing rapidly and shallowly) the hypnotist uses a rapid induction (a modified Elman “Two Finger Eye Closure” method). When the patient shows the axiomatic signs of being in an analgesic state, the hypnotherapist combines a dissociation and dilution method (Medical Hypnotherapy, Volume 1, Tim Simmerman) to ameliorate the patient's discomfort.
Specifically, the patient is guided to create a perceptual distance from her own body; to drain the nausea out of her abdomen; and to fill her abdominal region with soothing comfort (represented by a =refreshing blue color). The therapist suggests:
1) She imagine herself enjoying the sight, smell and taste of her favorite food;
2) She sense how easily the food goes down into her relaxed stomach;
3) She visualize the remainder of her pregnancy progressing smoothly and comfortably.
Restored to a full awareness, the patient reports being at a “two” on the 0 to 10 scale. She says, “I'm surprised at how well I feel.” The duration of the medical hypnosis session is fifty five minutes, including SOAP notes.
When the hypnotherapist follows up with the patient the next day, she says that she is successfully recreating her own “blue” comfort, that she is sustaining the level “two,” and that she feels quite positive. The patient is released that day, as she is no longer in pain, she is eating well and her nausea is under control.
The following week, at a medical staff meeting, the patient's physician reports,“ I can attest that hypnosis works better than any drug we have.”
This case illustrates the potential for medical hypnosis to be utilized in a critical care setting, for the expedient improvement of a patient, as well as a reduced hospital stay, which may translate to a lower cost for the patient and the hospital.
Welcome to Mindwalk: My Blog
Reflections and thoughts by Aléna Guest
"One does not become enlightened by imagining figures of light, but by making the darkness conscious."
- C. G. Jung