ESFJ – The Host/Hostess of the World

London Life Coach & Relationship Expert Sloan Sheridan-Williams talks about ESFJ personality types. Follow Sloan Life Coach on Twitter @SloanSW_London and visit www.sloansw.com

I have been asked to elaborate on each personality type with a few characteristics and examples for each. I will be expanding on each type shortly but in the mean time I have compiled a list of examples for you to wet your appetite for the fun ways in which typology can be used and understood.

In my observation, famous ESFJ’s include many interesting people some of which I have mentioned below. 

In no particular order ten real life  ESFJ’s are…

1. Daniel Goleman  
2. Sarah Palin   
3. Paris Hilton 
4. Tyra Banks  
5. Victoria Beckham 
6. Eddie Murphy
7. Michael Palin
8. Geri Halliwell
9. Sally Fields
10. Danny Glover

I have also included a few fictional characters 

1. Bones – Star Trek 
2. Donald Duck   
3. Rabbit

ESTJ – The Overseer

London Life Coach & Relationship Expert Sloan Sheridan-Williams talks about ESTJ personality type. Follow Sloan Life Coach on Twitter @SloanSW_London and visitwww.sloansw.com

I have been asked to elaborate on each personality type with a few characteristics and examples for each. I will be expanding on each type shortly but in the mean time I have compiled a list of examples for you to wet your appetite for the fun ways in which typology can be used and understood.

In my observation, famous ESTJ’s include many interesting people some of which I have mentioned below. 

In no particular order ten real life  ESTJ’s are…

1. Dr Phil McGraw  
2. Ivanka Trump   
3. Michelle Obama
4. Bruce Willis  
5. Brian Cox 
6. Daniel Craig
7. Vanessa Feltz
8. Mikhail Gorbachev  
9. Paul Merton
10. John Prescott

I have also included a few fictional characters 

1. Bob Kelso – Scrubs 
2. Tony Soprano – The Sopranos  
3. Lucy – Charlie Brown 
4. Miranda Bailey – Grey’s Anatomy

ISFJ – The Defender

London Life Coach & Relationship Expert Sloan Sheridan-Williams talks about ISFJ personality types. Follow Sloan Life Coach on Twitter @SloanSW_London and visitwww.sloansw.com

I have been asked to elaborate on each personality type with a few characteristics and examples for each. I will be expanding on each type shortly but in the mean time I have compiled a list of examples for you to wet your appetite for the fun ways in which typology can be used and understood.

In my observation, famous ISFJ’s include many interesting people some of which I have mentioned below. 

In no particular order ten real life  ISFJ’s are…

1. Mother Teresa  
2. George H W Bush   
3. Oliver Reed 
4. Elijah Wood  
5. Megan Mullally 
6. Tori Spelling
7. William Shatner
8.  Michael Caine
9. Rose McGowan
10. Toni Collette

I have also included a few fictional characters 

1. Elliott Reid – Scrubs 
2. Beverley Crusher – Star Trek: The Next Generation   
3. Ophelia – Hamlet

ESTP – The Persuader

London Life Coach & Relationship Expert Sloan Sheridan-Williams talks about ESTP personality type. Follow Sloan Life Coach on Twitter @SloanSW_London and visit www.sloansw.com

I have been asked to elaborate on each personality type with a few characteristics and examples for each. I will be expanding on each type shortly but in the mean time I have compiled a list of examples for you to wet your appetite for the fun ways in which typology can be used and understood.

In my observation, famous ESTP’s include many interesting people some of which I have mentioned below. 

In no particular order ten real life  ESTP’s are…

1. Steven Covey 
2. Donald Trump   
3. George W Bush 
4. John F Kennedy  
5. Dale Carnegie 
6. John Gray
7. Madonna
8. Ernest Hemingway 
9. Britney Spears
10. Cherie Blair

I have also included a few fictional characters 

1. The Todd – Scrubs 
2. William Riker – Star Trek: The Next Generation   
3. James Bond 
4. Mark Sloane – Grey’s Anatomy

Eight Energy Boosters

London Life Coach & Wellbeing Consultant Sloan Sheridan-Williams talks about energy boosters. Follow Sloan Life Coach on Twitter @SloanSW_London and check out Sloan’s Life Coaching website www.sloansw.com

Psychology, physiology and physical fitness affect our moods, wellbeing and the way others perceive us. In modern day life the majority of us live in the fast lane constantly striving for bigger and better. This stimulates our body to release adrenalin putting our systems in a “fight or flight” response throughout the day, however such excess adrenalin has no real outlet as our modern day lives exist on perceived stressors and not actual ones. This means that each and every day our adaptations to stress result in exhaustion and, if we are not careful, burn out.

If you are feeling fatigued and want to add a little zest back into your life, follow these eight tips to increase your energy as indicated below.

1. Create a gratitude journal

It is very easy to forget how much we have focusing mainly on the pressures and negatives of our daily lives rather than on the positives that we will more often than not take for granted. Whether you wish to fill your gratitude journal with anecdotes from your family life, time spent by yourself, the start of summer, a song you heard on the radio or the fact you have food in the fridge, just take a moment either at the beginning or end of the day to write five things that you are either grateful for or that made you smile today. This will help you get a good perspective on your life and help focus your subconscious towards the positive and therefore attracting more of the same.

2. Take a break

Modern day living results in many of us either sitting at desks, computers or even enduring long commutes which in turn decreases our nervous system function and accelerates the risks to our health. Take time out if possible every 30 minutes to either stand up and stretch or walk to the water cooler and grab a drink or get out of the car to get a minute of fresh air. These pattern interrupts not only change your psychology but by altering your position will also change your physiology and decrease the risk of stress on your spinal joints and skeletal structures.

3. Do more exercise

Once you have mastered taking time out to alter your position every 30 minutes, go that one step further and increase the amount of exercise in your daily routine. If your lifestyle is somewhat sedentary, try walking up to 30 minutes a day preferably in the morning as it fires up your brain and stimulates your body. If you’re already a gym goer, try to vary your routine and remember to smile as you work out as this too changes your physiology and in turn will increase your energy.

4. Read a good book

In our modern day society many fiction books are filled with horror, violence, science fiction and the likes and although maybe good escape often do not contain valuable insight to steer you through the ever winding road to a successful life. So pick up a book whether it is on wellbeing or even healthy recipes and take the time out to allow it to inspire you to make that change in your life for the better.

5. Turn off the TV and computer

Now you’ve added another book into your routine, we need to make time for it. In England alone researchers say that both TV and social networks allow us to hide behind technology rather than circulating and connecting with the world on a face-to-face basis. It has been shown that this actual results in brain cell death and therefore on your road to increasing your energy and vitality, not only should you limit your TV and computer time throughout the day, I suggest based on the myriad of research I have read that you avoid both TV and computers for at least an hour before you go to bed. If you are too tired to read the book mentioned in point 4 then try to listen to relaxing music or even try meditating.

6. Have one hour of “Me Time”

Take one hour out at least once a week to do something just for you. Girls, you may wish to run a bubble bath, pamper yourself with bath bombs, face masks, mani-pedi’s accompanied by a small glass of champagne. Men, you may also wish to do this alternatively there is no harm in the stereotypical watching and/or playing of sport, computer games and or building something from scratch. Whatever makes you happy and increases your endorphin level should dictate how you spend this hour of your time. This hour will act as a powerful mood enhancer providing you with enough energy for the week ahead.

7. Eat healthy

As summer approaches so does a myriad of tantalising and tasty array of fruits and vegetables appear on our supermarket shelves as they come into season. These include strawberries, raspberries, nectarines and cherries to name but a few. With an increase in fresh and raw foods your body will thank you for the additional supply of enzymes it needs to not only help you look younger and more radiant but also to increase your vitality levels giving you an added boost for the day ahead. As you eat more of these fruits high in antioxidants, if you want added impact then avoid white refined foods such as bread, pasta, rice, cakes, pastries and any other processed foods. To be a triple threat to any fatigue or exhaustion trying to overtake your system, you can also add a high quality probiotic capsule into your diet to kick exhaustion to the curb.

8. Attract that which you desire

Get motivated to change one important thing in your life – be this to find your perfect partner, get promoted at work or buy the house you’ve always dreamed of. Take a sheet of A3 paper and write where you are on the left hand side then write where you want to be on the right hand side. Then take the next 5 to 10 minutes to brainstorm in no particular order all the things you need to achieve or execute in order to get to your desired goal. Put all these points down on your A3 piece of paper then link them together in the order necessary to get your desired outcome. Now fold this piece of paper away and put it somewhere safe, knowing you’ve already triggered off your reticular activating system and your subconscious into seeking out the opportunities you require to make that which you desire and deserve come true. Having faith in this process and letting go of the outcome will not only enable you to enjoy the journey, providing you energy along the way, but also reap the benefits when your desired outcome is attained.

Good luck on your journey. I wish you every health, happiness and energy as you complete your eight steps to the energetic life that excites and empowers you.

Image reproduced from fanpop.com

Meridian Psychology: Emotional and Mental Wellbeing – Part 2

London Life Coach & Wellbeing Consultant Sloan Sheridan-Williams talks about Meridian Psychology in the second of her two part series. Follow Sloan on Twitter @SloanSW_London and check out Sloan’s website www.sloansw.com

Continuing on from Part 1 on meridian psychology the following article looks at emotion and mental well being and neurovascular holding points for the reduction of anxiety. If you are interested in Meridian Psychology, do check out the first article in this series which looks at what meridians are and how meridian tracing works.

Emotional and Mental Balancing

Emotional and Mental balancing is best controlled or influenced by the acupressure point for psychological reversal, as such neuro-vascular point stimulation is a valuable treatment for emotional stress.

As we have seen in my previous articles psychological reversal is when the subconscious mind does not perform as the conscious mind requires. For example a client who says they want to lose weight or stop smoking but no matter how hard they try they continue failing in the attainment of their goal. Such a client who says they want to lose weight is likely to have a secondary gain embedded in their subconscious that prevents them from carrying out their conscious will. This could be all manner of unhelpful belief systems from the love of food to the belief that losing weight will harm them in some way.

Psychological reversal is foremost on my mind when a client comes to me presenting with stories of repeated failure in achieving a goal. I often use further counselling or ‘Asking the Body’ to reveal the cause, but the correction technique is both quick and simple. There are many different forms, some energy psychologies such as EFT (as I have addressed in other articles on City Connect) use the “Set-Up Protocol” which refers to the process by which the psychological reversal is solved. It consists of finding one’s sore spot (most likely found on the right or left side of the chest). This point is a pressure point/reflex on the lymphatic system. The sorer the spot is an indication of how strong the PR. Once found we make an opening statement that resonates such as ‘I deeply and profoundly love and accept myself’ Once the set up point has been calibrated the 12 step tapping routing can commence. Then completing with the 9 step Gamut Routine. For more information please see my other articles on Energy Therapies.

Other forms of energy psychology such as kinesiology remedies as seen in more detail that emotional and mental well being lie in the tapping the acupuncture point SI3 (Small Intestine 3) on the outside edge of the hand near the crease as can be seen when you make a fist. Just as in EFT, The practitioner taps the point in question very rapidly i.e on both of the subject’s hands;  a good gauge for speed is approximately 3 times per second for 20 seconds. While doing this the subject repeats a positive statement  “I completely love and accept myself the way I am”.  The idea here is to change energy patterns in the meridian thereby releasing negativity.  Re-testing should then show a strong IM muscle to the stated goal.

However the meridian psychology subject of neuro-vascular points is the one I would like to address as what I find as one of the most helpful procedures in reducing anxiety levels, so much so a lot of us do it naturally.


Neuro-Vascular Holding Points

In the 1930’s Dr. Terrance Bennett, a chiropracter, discovered points on the head which seem to influence blood flow to the organs and tissues.  He found that he was able to watch the internal effects of holding these points using radio-opaque dye and a moving x-ray machine called a fluoroscope.  The points observed  became known as neuro-vascular reflexes and later the location and function of these points was discovered.

It has been shown that neuro-vascular points are activated by a very light touch with the pads of the fingers which only need to lightly make contact with the points, slightly stretch the skin and be held there.

Holding these neurovascular points has been shown to relieve stress and anxiety, and can be used to reprogram our emotional responses to stress and trauma. When we get overwhelmed, we commonly put our hands to our forehead, when we do this we are using the electromagnetic energy in our hand to pull the blood back into the frontal lobes of our brain, taking it from the more primal area that is activated when you are stressed out or overwhelmed. We often keep our hands there until we feel better. The longer you hold her points the more the stress will fade. Some people often repeat the story of concern in their head while holding the neurovascular points to change their emotional habits or responses and thereby training the mind not to react stressfully to the situation.

Overall hopefully this 2 part series has opened you up to a world of meridian psychology and inspired you to read around the subject. A few articles can not do this subject justice. I have only highlighted a small part in essence to show you, the reader, a deeper understanding of meridians, their tracing, the effect of certain treatments on it and the ability to get balance in the form of mind and body. I look forward to any of your comments, alternatively do use the Q+A page for further questions.

Image reproduced from cynthiarevesz.com and backintoit.com

Coping With IBS

London Life Coach & Wellbeing Consultant Sloan Sheridan-Williams talks about IBS. Follow Sloan on Twitter @SloanSW_London and check out Sloan’s website www.sloansw.com

Although digestive health has become less taboo with the introduction of TV shows such as Embarrassing Bodies and TV adverts such as Activia with Martine McCutcheon, many of us are still embarrassed to talk about our digestive complaints. Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) affects nearly 1 in 4 people in the Western world and is three times as common in females than males, yet many of us still do not understand it.

IBS is a catch-all name used to describe digestive complaints with one or more of the following symptoms: bloating, stomach pain, diarrhoea, flatulence, headaches, nausea, constipation, cramps, anxiety and even depression.

There are three well-known causes for IBS, the most commonly discussed are food intolerances however an equally important trigger is high levels of stress and the most overlooked contributor is parasites. As the symptoms of IBS are very generalised it is important that before trying out any of these natural remedies you consult your GP first to make sure there isn’t an underlying condition that may need treatment through more conventional methods.

For those of you who believe diet and food intolerance is the cause of your IBS please see below for a bullet point cheat sheet of what to eat and what to avoid.

Fill your storecupboard with:

  • Millet, buckwheat, quinoa, rice cakes, lentils
  • Buckwheat or rice pasta and/or noodles
  • Rice, almond or soya milk
  • Lean poultry and meats
  • Fresh fruits and vegetables
  • Peppermint, fennel, nettle, chamomile teas
  • Low sugar diluted apple, pear or pineapple juice
  • Pickled ginger and wasabi (as seen in sushi)
  • Nuts and seeds (especially pumpkin, sunflower and chesnuts)
  • Vegetable and/or fish based soups
  • Probiotic yoghurt
  • Aloe vera juice

Things to bin:

  • Refined carbohydrates (flour, wheat, white bread, yeast etc.)
  • Refined sugars
  • All dairy products
  • Eggs
  • Citrus fruits
  • High tyramine foods e.g. cheese, port, red wine, beef and liver
  • All processed food

These lists are just a guideline, for all you S (sensory) types, the lists are not prescriptive and you may find it useful to keep a food journal slowly re-introducing foods you enjoy to see how they affect you. The human body is complex and therefore many of you will be able to introduce some of these items back into your diet in time. For you N (intuitive) types, to see proper results you will need to stick to this list for at least 7 to 14 days so do make sure you attempt such at a time when your stresses are at their lowest.

Whether food is a factor or not, much research has shown that stress is a major contributor in most gut problems. In most anxiety-induced situations our body goes into the “fight or flight” response which in lay terms means our digestive processes shut down and therefore our digestive juices are not in the right quantity to carry out the functions required. This leaves partially digested food particles in our gut and these particles cause irritation. To help combat this, I have a few suggestions as bullet pointed below:

  • To ensure your food is thoroughly digested, make sure you chew each mouthful 20 times as this produces the digestive enzymes needed that are often inhibited by stress
  • Consider eating more alkaline foods or using an alkalising filter as this allows your gut to work in optimal conditions
  • Use oil of peppermint either as a massage oil or as a peppermint tea to further aid digestion
  • Increase your exercise (not directly after eating) as this in general will help regulate bowel function

If you are in a situation where the external stressors are too much to overcome on your own then I suggest either talking to a close friend that you trust to help lighten your load or, if that is not applicable, a therapist or counsellor should be able to give you productive coping strategies to deal with your unique situation.

As a clinical hypnotherapist myself, I have seen many clients for stress-related issues of which over 50% had some gut or eating disorder. Hypnosis is an extremely successful tool in combating IBS whether one uses visualisations, parts therapy, relaxation techniques or neuro-linguistic anchorings and suggestions. I personally have had 100% success using hypnosis to aid IBS symptoms for those patients who it was wholly produced by stress. If you think this is the cause of your IBS, do look into hypnotherapy as an option but please make sure your therapist is not only registered but has trained in clinical hypnosis or has at least taken the IBS course in hypnosis.

For the last category of IBS sufferers where you may have been at risk of parasite infection, do check out the website www.smartnutrition.co.uk as they can test for levels of bacteria (good and bad), candida and a whole host of other parasites.

Those of you who want a more in-depth analysis of food that can aid in IBS look no further than The Intolerable Food Co. which can be found at www.intolerablefood.com. Sue Widdecombe, who founded the company, is a chef who fought through her own food intolerances and has now brought ready meals created by herself to local farms and other delicatessens nationwide.

Images reproduced from statistik.tu-dortmund.de and ayurvedicdietsolutions.com

Meridian Psychology: Emotional and Mental Wellbeing – Part 1

London Life Coach & Wellbeing Consultant Sloan Sheridan-Williams talks about Meridian Psychology in the first of a two part series. Follow Sloan on Twitter @SloanSW_London and check out Sloan’s website www.sloansw.com

Continuing on from my current discussions on energy therapies, with this article I am pleased to take you through Complementary Therapies amongst other things with the following emphasis on Meridians, Meridian Tracing, Emotional and Mental well-balance and Neurovascular Holding Points in this 2 part series.

For those not acquainted with Meridian Psychology, meridians are channels through which vital energy (life force) circulates round the body/lie. There are specific points called acupuncture points where the flow of C’hi travels where C’hi is the life force energy that exists in everything. In its purest form it is light and in its densest form it is granite. C’hi flows across the body via meridian pathways and can be balanced by either sedating or stimulating meridian points.  There are 12 major meridians each flowing through specific organs, glands and tissues. Such a system is closely linked to the Central Nervous System. Al meridians are classified as either Yin or Yang depending on direction of flow. Yin refers to that which is dark, cool, moist, soft, receptive, feminine, passive and sinking. Often referred to as the dark negative female principle in Chinese dualistic cosmology. Whereas Yang corresponds to that which is light, hot, dry, active, masculine, positive and rising. Often referred to as the bright positive masculine principle in Chinese dualistic cosmology. Yin and Yang are said to balance one another.

Such energy psychologies focus mainly on balance and harmony by avoiding energy disruptions in the  system.  It has been shown that body consciousness and brain consciousness mutually inform and condition each other harmonising brain to body. In turn the balancing of the meridian system affects the body’s central nervous system as both systems are closely linked.

There are two main types of meridian therapy that apply here Acupressure and meridian tracing.  Acupressure is a gentle method of placing pressure along the meridian to sense soreness or discomfort. This, in turn, relates to which organ is experiencing a problem. For example, if the organ is diseased, most points along that meridian will be sensitive. I have not addressed this in more detail as I would like to concentrate on meridian tracing as there is less information around about it.

Meridian Tracing

Meridian therapy as discussed above can also be done by tracing the meridians. This can be carried out several times a day and does not require actual touching. It can even be done by holding the hands close to the body or through clothing. Meridian therapy is extremely versatile and can also done by mentally tracing an energy meridian through awareness and controlled breathing. This typically requires a greater depth of experience and understanding of meridian points and energy fields.

It can be done in many forms for example, magnets may also be used for tracing meridians. One can move the appropriate pole of a magnet close to the skin along a meridian. The benefit of this is that is has a much stronger balancing effect than using your fingers. It also has a dual function as for strengthening one can use the north-pointing pole and for sedating use the south-pointing pole can be used by keeping that end in contact with the skin.

With muscle testing the practitioner can often detect a strong preference of a meridian for one of the magnetic poles. This in turn can be used to diagnose the condition of the associated organ (if weak or inflamed). If muscle testing is not possible or successful, use the south-pointing pole on the body side that shows more inflammation or more tender acupressure-points; the practitioner then traces the opposite meridian with the north-pointing pole. Some clients feel immediately which pole and direction of tracing is beneficial, while the opposite pole and direction may feel unpleasant. The most powerful sedating and pain-relieving effect and the one most commonly used by practitioners is the south-pointing pole traced against the meridian flow.

The tracing of meridians associated with painful conditions 20-50 times has sometimes provided almost immediate relief from pain, while similar quick results have sometimes been achieved using the north-pointing pole for improving the mobility of impaired limbs.

For those who do not have magnets handy or wish another form of tracing, mental tracing is also an effective means of treatment achieved simply by tracing a meridian mentally – i.e moving the awareness along the meridian. In some cases I have asked clients to imagine a warm or orange energy stream moving in the normal flow direction for stimulation, while other clients I have asked to imagine a cool or blue stream moving either in the normal direction or against it for sedation.

For more information on meridian psychology, please see part 2 of this series where we continue to look at emotion and mental well being and neurovascular holding points for the reduction of anxiety.

Image reproduced by traffordhousingtrust.co.uk

Pomegranates: Advice for Overwhelming Situations

London Life Coach & Relationship Expert Sloan Sheridan-Williams talks about dealing with overwhelming situations. Follow Sloan on Twitter @SloanSW_London and check out Sloan’s website www.sloansw.com

A good friend of mine often asks me to retell this story as he says it has helped develop the way he handles situations. I therefore have included it below, but before I start I should explain this friend is an INTJ, also known as a strategist or more commonly a fixer.

To be a good fixer you have to think clinically. Emotions can be messy. Medics have it easy, they can tuck those pesky feelings neatly away and step into a clean sterile room where the procedure is simple. Cut, suture, and close. If you are lucky you haven’t accidentally left a towel in there and the problem is fixed.

But sometimes you’re faced with a problem that isn’t just medical but one that involves emotions, like a fresh cut that rips its stitches wide open – that’s when I believe the tale of pomegranates comes into effect.

Whatever your type the following information is invaluable to a balanced life, I hope you enjoy the tale and pass it on.

A wise man once told me a story he read in a book involving a junior doctor and his mentor.  It originates from advice passed down through the generations, unfortunately proper attribution cannot be given as I was not told the name of the book, but I thank the originator of this tale.

So, one fine morning…

The junior doc peered into the waiting room and called his first patient of the day. It was an easy case as his mentor had already told him the cure was pomegranates. On examination the junior doc was relieved that there were no hidden traps. He confidently told his patient that he had a liver infection and that the cure was a simple dose of pomegranates. To his dismay, the patient yelled, told him he was incompetent and stormed out of the surgery, leaving a dumfounded student questioning his mentor.

As luck would have it, there was another patient in the surgery, that too with the exact same infliction so the mentor took the opportunity to teach how it should be done. He called the patient into his office, carried out the exact same tests then calmly sat back and thought quietly. After a few minutes he hesitated then said “you need something, red, fleshy”…he paused momentarily “hmmmmm something high in anti-oxidants and a good water content” he paused again then blurted out “pomegranates, you need pomegranates” as if he had just solved the mystery of the Turin shrowd. The patient got up, hugged the doctor, thanked him and walked out of the office with a spring in his step.

The junior doc was dismayed as he had given the exact same remedy until his mentor explained that what both patients needed was pomegranates and TIME!

In this modern world what so many of us forget is that the human psyche needs time to digest and reacclimatise to information. Sometimes what we don’t do is every bit as powerful as that which we do do.

I think of this story often when advising my clients. In this modern day world we are so rarely given time to think, breathe, cope, strategise, improve, figure out, etc… An ENTJ like myself and an INTJ, the person who requested I publish an article on this topic often need to be reminded of pomegranates. Maybe you do too?

Many other types especially go getters need to be reminded to slow down and that fixing situations although useful sometimes need a dash of TIME. So, if someone in your life needs a situational awareness check, send them this article and then yell “pomegranates”, you will be amazed at how useful it is. Even more useful, tell yourself “pomegranates” too, because in those moments where we all push too hard, taking a step back accompanied by a deep breathe often allows the fog to clear and provides us with the courage to move forward.

Image reproduced from www.myplantwhiz.com

Meridian Energy Therapies

London Life Coach & Wellbeing Consultant Sloan Sheridan-Williams talks about Meridian Energy Therapies. Follow Sloan on Twitter @SloanSW_London and check out Sloan’s website www.sloansw.com

Most people know me as a hypnotherapist or life coach, but my studies also took me through Energy Therapies. I am often asked what is an energy therapy, to which I ask if the client has ever heard of EFT as it seems a popular branch in the media. For those who are interested in a more detailed understanding of energy psychology I have detailed below the transformation of the use of energy psychology throughout the years. I have included how the internal energy pathways which run through our physical body (connecting energetically, the body’s organs and their sub systems) have been analysed and the results adapted to produce therapies that aid in creating balance and harmony within the system thereby reducing pain, symptoms and any other distress.

Beginning in Detroit… Applied Kinesiology was born

Dr George Goodheart, a Detroit chiropractor, was interested in the relationship between apparent muscle strength, organs, glands and the meridians. Over the years he worked with many remarkable therapists from rehabilitation therapists to scientists involved in the neuro-lymphatic reflexes and other researchers who looked into acupuncture meridians. With this wealth of research and acquired knowledge, Dr George Goodheart went on to be the founder and developer of Applied Kinesiology.

Behavioural Kinesiology grew from Applied Kinesiology

Now one of the foremost senior holistic healers, John Diamond’s remarkable body of work - which began to get scientific recognition back in the 1970’s when he discovered the link between acupuncture meridians and emotions – enabled Applied Kinesiology to be adapted for even better results. Like myself, John Diamond began his career in Medicine (though his speciality was psychiatry). He later expanded into holistic medicine, concentrating on the totality of the sufferer. This led him to develop a unique method of healing adapting the work of George Goodheart to practice what we now refer to as Behavioural Kinesiology which assesses and evaluates the effects of all stimuli on the body, internal and external, in order to arrive at a new understanding of the body energy system. The degree of stress under which a patient is functioning is assessed and a rebalancing of the body energy is facilitated by showing the patient how to reduce stress and how to correct emotional attitudes.

John Diamond continues his work to this day and his research has led him to concentrate on the enhancement of the sufferer’s Life Energy so as to actuate his own innate Healing Power. However, as a cog in the ever advancing energy psychology, John Diamond’s contribution was a key component which allowed further developments.

Thought Field Therapy emerged

Dr Roger Callahan, a Beverly Hills Psychologist, also studied Applied Kinesiology and spent time studying with John Diamond. He then emerged with his own branch of energy psychology and termed his treatment “Thought Field Therapy”. Callahan theorised that when a person thinks about an experience or thought associated with an emotional problem, they are tuning into a “thought field.” And hence a concept was born. He describes this field as “the most fundamental concept in the TFT system”, stating that it “creates an imaginary, though quite real scaffold, upon which we may erect our explanatory notions”.

He believed that perturbations are said to be precisely encoded information contained in the thought field; each deformation of a person’s thought field is connected to a particular problem. It is believed that such can be activated by thinking about that problem and therefore Callahan maintains that these perturbations are the root cause of negative emotions. If this is true then each perturbation corresponds to a meridian point on the body so he theorised that in order to eliminate the emotional upset, a precise sequence of meridian points must be tapped in a set order to unblock energy and release the flow. Callahan developed such a method of tapping but it uses an extensive number of potential meridian points and needed simplification.

Callahan stated when he developed TFT that the process can relieve a wide variety of psychological issues including PTSD, depression, anxieties, addictions and phobias to name but a few. It is a very effective treatment once a practitioner has learnt how to do it and a typical treatment session lasts up to fifteen minutes and is not repeated.  Callahan has made substantial claims that TFT can treat or prevent physical problems and also made a ground breaking assertion that some phobias could be cured in as little as five minutes. This would be remarkable if we had enough practitioners qualified enough to learn such a complex process which is when one of Callahan’s students thought to simplify the process which, although does not have as miraculous results, still gives other therapies good competition in successful treatment.

Gary Craig adapted TFT creating EFT

Gary Craig (who trained with Dr Callahan) reduced TFT to make a simpler approach more accessible and applicable. Craig reduced the 361 meridian points down to 13 which are used in EFT with the first 12 being percussed no matter what the emotional upset followed by a 9 step Gamut on the 13th point.

As Gary Craig, originally a NLP practitioner, has no medical or psychological background critics have described EFT as “probably nonsense and outside the realms of science as it is an unfalseifiable treatment”. A controlled study concluded that any benefit is due to traditional cognitive components and perhaps even the placebo effect. In the simplest of forms, it is a distraction from negative thoughts and the therapeutic benefits come from having someone actually listen, rather than from manipulation of meridians. However the non-sceptics among us have had success with this treatment and although a simplified version of Callahan’s it does still retain respect in the holistic communities.

Other energy psychologies continue to emerge

Other energy psychologies including TAT and BSFF to name a couple, emerged over time from the numerous previous meridian psychologies. The former was Tapas Fleming’s contribution to energy therapies in its unabbreviated form called Tapas Acupressure Technique. This was developed in 1983 by the American acupuncturist Tapas Fleming and is often described as a process orientated energy psychology treatment. It is comprised of 7 steps and can be taught in a 2 day workshop. Its roots are from Chinese Medicine and yoga.

Other energy psychologies are still emerging and are extremely effective in treating emotional unbalances. I am pleased to be able to use them in my treatments where necessary and when the client is interested in a different approach to the issue before them.

Images reproduced from red-spirit-energy-healing.com and sahej.com

Overcoming Procrastination – Part 4

London Life Coach & Relationship Expert Sloan Sheridan-Williams talks about procrastination. Follow Sloan on Twitter @SloanSW_London and check out Sloan’s website www.sloansw.com

We are now in Part 4 of the Overcoming Procrastination series and some of you might have even booked that summer holiday or beach break and have made a promise to yourself that you will lose weight to fit into your bikini or swimming trunks before your plane takes off. However have you found that the diet is either hard to stick to or, as like with all types of procrastination, that it keeps getting put off perhaps to the start of the week after your friend’s birthday, after that weekend barbecue, the list seems never-ending. This type of procrastination is tantamount to New Year’s resolutions. It’s the type of promise you make yourself yet there is no guilt if you give it up within hours or days of the original idea. This is normally because there has been no strong commitment and / or action plan thought out and therefore it is easier to procrastinate. This type of procrastination is often referred to as Promissory Procrastination.

This procrastination is seen more in less detail orientated people so for example NFs (the big picture feelers) are the most likely to be so caught up in the big picture of being thinner and fitting into the bikini that they have not thought each step through. STs are less likely to fall into this trap however although they have an action plan they sometimes lack the willpower and determination to get there as they have less visualisation on the long-term goal.

Therefore to conquer Promissory Procrastination not only do we need to have a clear vision / wish but also an action plan detailing the hows, whys whens and wheres. To do this we need to take the “Feelers” temporarily into a thinking zone and get the “Sensors” to take a step back and see the bigger picture. Every personality type can find a path taking small steps to completing their new goal, be it controlling their eating habits, enlarging their social circle, volunteering their time in the community, taking up a new hobby or satisfying the basic need of significance.

If you want to keep the promises that you make to yourself, follow the bullet points below to help you on your way:-

  1. Decide out of all the Promissory Procrastination goals you’ve made which is the first you want to deal with.
  2. List all the activities you do to avoid keeping to your goal.
  3. List the reasons you use to justify the delay.
  4. Look at each reason in turn and decide if there is more pleasure in the activity or justification you use to avoid attaining your goal.
  5. Write a list of all the positives about reaching your goal.
  6. List the actions you would have to take to make it more pleasurable to reach your goal than procrastinating, justifying and avoiding the challenge.
  7. Ask yourself whether the change you are trying to make is meaningful enough to you personally to want to spend the time and effort of going through all the stages in step 6. If it is, put step 6’s list into action one small step at a time. If it isn’t, understand why this didn’t work for you, let go of the goal and move on without guilt.
  8. Repeat this process for all Promissory Procrastination challenges – do make sure you only take on one at a time. Although some challenges can be worked on in conjunction with each other, do not try to overload yourself as this is commonly a set-up for failure.

 

Unlike Promissory Procrastination where we often set resolutions and goals without thinking the steps through, the next type of procrastination I will be talking about is where both the wish and the plan are present but it’s like watching helicopter blades starting to cycle but never fast enough to allow it to lift off the ground. This type of procrastination is called Behavioural Procrastination and it is very common in N types, because such procrastinators can have outstanding visions which come from their big picture thinking and can even be organised but what they lack is motivation and follow through.

You will often see this type of procrastination in people who try to start their own businesses who have fantastic ideas but still don’t manage to sell their product or in employees who accumulate case files that are close to being finished but never quite ready for presentation. It also happens in S types, for example the eternal student who keeps re-writing their thesis justifying the need for change on the small level but never finishing the project to hand it in. For these types of people, the planning and the detail is fun but the execution, production and completion is either frustrating or feels out of their reach.

If you identify with Behavioural Procrastination and you would like to redefine yourself as someone who follows through to the end of a project, follow the steps below:-

  1. Define your most pressing Behavioural Procrastination and give a list of reasons why you want to be able to complete your project.
  2. Take each reason and attach as many pleasurable images in your mind to completing the project.
  3. List all the details you concentrate on to avoid completing the project.
  4. Ask yourself how many of these details are absolutely necessary for the completion of your project and list how many are actually hindering completion.
  5. Ask yourself what you tell yourself to justify the delay.
  6. Ask yourself how that makes you look to yourself and others.
  7. Find out if there is more pain attached to handing something in that’s not ‘perfect’ than making people wait.
  8. Address why this is.
  9. Ask yourself what you would need to change to understand that projects need to be finished to completion and that the details should not be all-consuming.
  10. List all the actions you can take to make sure you complete each stage of your plan without getting overloaded in excuses and justifications.
  11. Take each step in turn.
  12. When you have completed the challenge return to step 1 and choose your next procrastination to deal with.

Following through to the end of your projects not only makes you more productive but helps you lead a life with integrity when you start being your word whether that’s executing a document, building up your own business or handing work in on time. Others will treat you with respect and in the long-term this will create even more of an advantage to you.

In the next instalment of Overcoming Procrastination series we will be discussing how once you have kicked the procrastination habit it is easy to get into a cycle of procrastination then action then procrastination which is a slippery slope and often referred to as Fallback Pattern Procrastination. We will also be addressing Lateness Procrastination which is just as disrespectful to yourself as it is to others.

Images reproduced from heartsandminds.org and slicesoflife.org

Complementary Therapies Explained – Applied Kinesiology and Allergy Testing

London Life Coach & Wellbeing Consultant Sloan Sheridan-Williams talks about complementary therapy. Follow Sloan on Twitter @SloanSW_London and check out Sloan’s website www.sloansw.com

As we have seen in my previous article, Applied Kinesiology is a form of diagnosis using muscle testing as a primary feedback mechanism to examine the body and it’s functioning. As addressed in my description as to what Kinesiology is and how can we use the information gained from Applied Kinesiology techniques. The following article describes one of the numerous applications of Applied Kinesiology’s which is that of Allergy Testing.

How is it used and what for?

Applied Kinesiology works by using an indicator muscle (a single muscle) to obtain responses about the structural, chemical, nutritional and emotional basis of the subject in question. The normal positions of the body for muscle testing are sitting, standing or lying face up on a massage couch and are therefore very easy to carry out on a number of clients without being invasive to both personal space and privacy. One of the great things about the practicability of Applied Kinesiology is that it is possible to use a surrogate for testing when it is impractical to use muscle testing on the subject. I.e. they are frail, have a broken limb, or perhaps a baby or small child. This opens the arena of Applied Kinesiology to a wider array of subjects allowing treatment to help a broader spectrum of people.

As for what can Kinesiology treat, the spectrum there is also wide. It is often used in allergies but is not confined to this one area. However I have chosen to look at the area of allergies as this is something that affects nearly the majority of the population.

An allergy is an abnormal response to a food, drug or something in our environment which does not usually cause symptoms in people. When faced with an allergen the immune system mistakenly identifies the harmless substances as dangerous invaders and activates antibodies to defend them and protect the system and internal environment. Most of the mechanisms involve expulsion be it in sweating, eyes and nose running, vomiting, upset stomach etc… Allergens are found in everyday life; they could be pollens, dairy products, eggs, wheat, and animal hair to name just a few.

Allergy testing is more important than just adapting diet and avoiding bloating and the more common but less severe symptoms as mentioned above but it can have a role in a multitude of disorders from Arthritis to Multiple Sclerosis to Adrenal Fatigue to IBS. For example, Multiple Sclerosis has been linked to a severe intolerance to wheat and it is also believed by some that citrus fruit food intolerance is thought to play a part in cases of arthritis. Therefore knowledge about what one’s body is unable to tolerate can perhaps reduce the prevalence of the more serious conditions.

Testing is normally carried out in a practitioner’s office although there is no reason why home visits cannot be arranged. Half a glass of pure water is drunk before testing because it is important for the client to not be dehydrated before testing begins as this affects the muscle readings.

The subject is then told to relax and more often than not the practitioner helps the client relax before testing by getting them to imagine a calm place, deep breathing and allowing their mind to drift off into a quiet state of relaxation. This feeling of relaxation can be enhanced with the tone and content of the practitioner’s language. For added relaxation some Applied Kinesiologist’s  also apply pressure on the two acupressure holding points or to the two indentations of the sternum which further enhances stress release and relaxation. Once full relaxation is achieved for those undergoing allergy testing, the substance is then applied to the navel, contained in a glass vial or in cling-film. The substance is only approximately a thumb nail size, yet this is enough to elicit a response when the testing begins.

A usual form of testing is the Straight Arm Pull. The Arm Pull Down test or “Delta test,” is where the patient resists as the practitioner exerts a downward force on an extended arm. The tester instructs the client to resist as they press down the arm and notice of the amount of resistance able to be given. Proper positioning is paramount to ensure that the muscle in question is the prime mover, minimizing interference from adjacent muscle groups. The resultant response from the muscle during this test will give an indication of the body’s response to the potential allergen in question and enables the practitioner to inform the client what he is or is not sensitive too.

Most people know me as a hypnotherapist or life coach, but those who have been reading my current articles on energy therapies will know that my studies also took me through Complementary Therapies amongst other things. I am pleased to be able to use this procedure in my treatments where necessary and when the client is interested in a different approach to the issue before them. If you have any further questions contact me through City Connect, leave a comment or ask a question through our Q+A page.

Images reproduced from amicay.com and dockaren.com

Insomnia – Coping Strategies

London Life Coach & Wellbeing Consultant Sloan Sheridan-Williams talks about insomnia. Follow Sloan on Twitter @SloanSW_London and check out Sloan’s website www.sloansw.com

My clients often complain that they are unable to sleep and that their GP has suggested tablets for their ‘condition’. This sometimes works but can lead to other issues later down the line. While this can be a very appropriate treatment in a variety of cases, and I am by no means advocating you alter or stop the dosing before speaking to a medical practitioner, the good news is that there is often more than one treatment option for any given symptom.

In fact sleep issues are on the whole easily addressed without the use of medication depending on the cause of the sleep disturbance in the first place. Never stop medication without discussing this with your GP, but do go through this check list to make sure there is not a more easily treatable cause to your insomnia.

Key Areas to Check For Insomnia Causes

Before I inundate you with a checklist of suggestions to aid you in getting a peaceful night’s sleep it is useful to check the obvious but most often forgotten key areas to make sure they are not affecting your sleep.

Physical Causes

Check that you are not physically impaired be it by your own body or your sleeping environment. Is the mattress too firm or in most cases too soft? Our mattresses can wear and tear quicker than we realise and it is always good practice to just keep an eye on this. Likewise something as simple as changing new pillows be it to brand new ones or a different style (hollow fibre over feather). One of my clients had an undiagnosed allergy/irritation to feathers and the remedy was as simple as a pilow change. If you think a physical discomfort is causing the lack of sleep, it is well worth a trip to your local chiropractor or osteopath as sometimes just one or two sessions and some coping strategies for posture at work and home can set you on a quick road to recovery.

Noise Causes

Is your bedroom noisy, be it from the outside street or appliances in your house infuriately ringing which are more noticeable as your home settles for the night? In certain circumstances the ringing may actually be generated seemingly inside your ear canal (tinnitus) which has many causes one of them being stress. For a masking of any noise be it internal or external, there are a lot of good ‘noise makers’ on the market now. Some replicate babbling brooks and birds chirping others create white noise, whichever one suits you best is worth trying to help you drift back in to a peaceful sleep and block out the unwanted noise.

Subconscious Causes

Do you have obsessive thoughts whirling around and around in your head. Like a spin cycle of your last wash load? Often our inner critic goes on overdrive when we just want to sleep. We have been shutting it out all day and it finally believes it has our attention so it takes hold while it can. Self hypnosis can help in these moments but if that is not your thing just take a deep breath and do either some relaxation techniques or meditation before you drift off to sleep.

Bladder Causes

Are you constantly getting up to urinate, in which case this can be as simple as too much coffee, alcohol or diuretic drinks in your daily life? These can both increase the need to empty your bladder and many involve stimulants such as caffeine. To be thorough it may be worth having a urine test to rule out infection, diabetes or a prostate problem (men only) but more often than not you will find a change in drinking quantities and type can help reduce your need to visit the bathroom and hence sleep disturbances.

Factors Linked to Causing Insomnia

With regards to insomnia, if none of the above factors are in play then firstly remember you are not alone. One in three adults are affected at some time in their life with a sleep disturbance. Although it affects women more than men, perhaps due to stress and coping strategies, insomnia patterns are also seen to increase with age because the quality of sleep decreases as the years go by.

A list of some of the factors influencing sleep pattern interrupts

  • stress (including anxiety about not being able to sleep)
  • lifestyle
  • depression
  • hormonal disturbances
  • side effects of medications
  • chronic pain
  • extreme temperature fluctuations
  • environmental noise or changes
  • sleep pattern disruptions
  • sleep apnoea

 

Insomnia Coping Strategies

Some of these factors have a similar remedy even though a different trigger. With this in mind I have grouped together below a collection of coping strategies in bullet point form for easy skimming. These suggestions have worked for other patients and may help you. Perhaps the remedy isn’t immediately obvious as connected to your trigger but do the ones you can and see if it makes a difference. Let go of any feelings of worry or panic and slowly make your way through this checklist to see which ones work for you.

For those of you who prefer a more prescriptive remedy (yes I am referring to you SF types!) please note this list is not exhaustive nor is it meant to be completed in its entirety. Not all of these may be suitable for everyone, but hopefully a few will work together and help you on the road to a peaceful night’s sleep.


Bedtime Routine

  • establish a consistent bedtime routine
  • make sure you are getting enough exercise but not overdoing it
  • take a warm bath at least 2 hours before you go to sleep
  • introduce relaxation as part of your regular night-time routine
  • keep your feet warm
  • keep your room temperature down
  • switch off the computer a couple of hours at least before bed
  • put lavender oil drops on your pillow
  • try to give yourself up to an hour in dim light before sleep
  • sleep in total darkness
  • experiment with bed times, aim to wake up at the end of your sleep cycle
  • invest in Sleeptracker or Zeo to wake you up at the lightest stage of your sleep cycle

Diet

  • reduce your intake of caffeine and alcohol, particularly in the evening
  • avoid large meals late in the evening
  • stay away from refined and processed foods, especially sugar
  • avoid coffee or more accurately caffeine
  • experiment with Ginseng tea as a good coffee substitute
  • avoid alcohol if you are feeling ready to be really healthy
  • increase your water intake

Please consult your GP & nutritionist/health food shop for the next 7

  • use natural alternatives such as passion flower or valerian to sleeping medications
  • fight fatigue with insomnia herbs
  • experiment with magnesium and calcium which improve fatigue
  • incorporate Ashwagandh to deal with stress
  • add Coenzyme Q10 to aid in cellular energy production
  • consider Cordyceps, which can help fight fatigue and boost energy levels
  • try Eleuthero or Siberian ginseng to enhance mental activity as well as physical endurance

Relaxation

  • go for a relaxing stroll
  • practice meditation/relaxation exercises
  • learn and use a relaxation technique regularly
  • learn the art of Mantram  – the practice of repeating over and over in the mind certain syllables, words or phrases that help reduce stress and  negative mental states

Lifestyle

  • get plenty of exercise during the day
  • instead of slumping in your chair, get up and go for a brief walk
  • increase activity to get your blood flowing
  • minimise clutter in your bedroom
  • optimise your sleep posture
  • try inclined bed therapy
  • use “white noise” devices to block out surrounding environmental noise
  • don’t obsess about not sleeping
  • try short naps, aim for under 30 minutes as a good gauge
  • replace some of your light bulbs indoors with full spectrum light bulbs
  • spend some time outdoors as often as you can to get exposure to bright, natural light, please be careful with regards to burning if you are prone to such

I hope some of these suggestions were of help and look forward to your comments about which one worked for you.

Image reproduced from www.nutritiondietnews.com, www.sijo.hu, www.woman-hub.com

Overcoming Procrastination – Part 3

London Life Coach & Relationship Expert Sloan Sheridan-Williams talks about procrastination. Follow Sloan on Twitter @SloanSW_London and check out Sloan’s website www.sloansw.com

As we discussed in Part 2, there are many different types of procrastination patterns and although we do not believe that humans can be labelled we have, for ease, labelled the patterns to help you understand how they work and how we can work together to benefit you.

For those of you who identified that Social Procrastination was an aspect of your behaviour that you wish to change, a good starting point is to analyse whether you have a fear of saying no when it comes to doing a task an acquaintance / friend / work colleague has asked you to do. For those of you who come under the typology category “SF”, you have a greater want to be liked by your peers however this is not limited to just SF personalities. Either way, until you realise that the request is discretionary and learn to say no if you really don’t want to do the favour then it will be inevitable that your delays will occur impacting your social interactions and attracting that which you feared the most – i.e. the disapproval of others. As for impersonal delays such as the late payment of tax bills, overdue library books or RSVPs to invitations, you are again placing yourself between a perpetual tug of war between punctuality and postponement. In addition those of you who socially procrastinate within groups often do so due to concern that your input won’t favourable compare to the others in the group.

For all these social procrastination patterns one needs to escape from the habitual trap, accept responsibilities and act on them showing a sign of maturity and realising that by combating delay you are actually avoiding the disapproval of friends, the fines from the tax office or library, the cold shoulder or lack of invitations for showing up late or not at all, and you show yourself that you are in charge of your emotions and rather than fixating on the small picture, are playing a longer term game resulting in achievement, high accolades and advancement.

To aid you get a grasp on your Social Procrastination, I would like you to take a few minutes to write in your journal about the challenges you find in this area and define a positive and uplifting avenue for change.

  1. Write down you most pressing Social Procrastination challenge.
  2. Name the catalysts you use to avoid completing the challenge.
  3. List the excuses you tell yourself and others to justify not meeting the challenge.
  4. List all the actions you are prepared to take to follow through and meet the next challenge coming your way.

Unlike Social Procrastination, Personal Procrastination occurs when you constantly put self improvement tasks low on your priority list which can in turn be detrimental to both your physical and emotional health. Such justifications for this type of procrastination involve low self-importance, an inaccurate and idealised timeline that there is no rush to improve oneself which inevitably shows that your sense of responsibility towards yourself is heavily diminished. Often clients are resistant to emotional change  due to time constraints or not wanting to delve into the past. It is in this area that much resistance is often noted as some challenges can be both uncomfortable and painful. However by taking the leap to break these fears of emotional insecurities, one can progressively master any type of Personal Procrastination and enhance any self-development and grow in ways you cannot even imagine. As with any procrastination problem the challenge is to start sooner rather than later. I have devised a few questions below for you to work through to get you started to vanquishing the fear and moving that step closer to a life that you will love.

  1. What is your most pressing Personal Procrastination challenge?
  2. What are the consequences for not carrying out the challenge?
  3. What do you typically do to avoid the challenge?
  4. How do you limit yourself in your abilities to progress and what are you losing?
  5. What do you tell yourself to justify not completing the challenge?What are your fears?
  6. What actions will you take today to feel more in charge of your life and gain the benefits of finally meeting the challenge?

In addition to these procrastination patterns there are also a group of Mild Impact Procrastinations. These are important to some people but appear lower on your priority list than they should and more often than not get put off until the next day and so on until they never get done. Such activities seem to be small matters and invariably you will take a calculated risk that they won’t affect you in the long run – often justifying that they will be a waste of time spent on the little things that you think can be done later. Unfortunately it is these little things that can blow up into larger challenges and such accumulations can leaving overwhelmed as they now will all have to be done all at once. To stop Mild Impact Procrastination before it starts a little organisation is needed especially for routine activities. If your personality type is not one to already be making lists it may be a useful activity to introduce this into your routine. Listing each mildly important activity, giving it a due date, allowing you to enjoy ticking them off as they are completed. Each tick that you produce not only shows that you’ve accomplished the activity without undue delay but reinforces that you are kicking your Procrastination habit to the curb and allows you to recognise that taking charge of these smaller aspects of your life will have a major impact on the running of your life as a whole. Again below, I have added a quick exercise for your journal to help you effectively deal with Mild Impact Procrastination which should enviable free up some brain space to more important matters such as Personal or social Procrastination matters.

  1. What is the most pressing Mild Impact Procrastination challenge?
  2. What do you typically do to avoid the challenge?
  3. List all the activities that you need to do regularly but delay.
  4. Write beside these activities a one word answer to justify the delay.
  5. What action will you take to follow through meeting your most pressing Mild Impact Procrastination challenge mentioned in 1?
  6. What actions are you going to take to combat your justifications for delaying the list of activities mentioned in 3.

I hope you take this time to promise yourself that procrastination is worth beating and to acknowledge that you have all the capabilities inside you to rise to the challenge and bring about a change for the better today.

I look forward to working with you in Part 4.

Images reproduced from epicponyz.com and associatedforensic.com

Self Esteem – How to Increase It

London Life Coach & Relationship Expert Sloan Sheridan-Williams talks about self esteem. Follow Sloan on Twitter @SloanSW_London and check out Sloan’s website www.sloansw.com

Self Esteem is actually how we see ourselves, but is so often linked to how we think others see us. How we take in the information presented to us both internally and externally has a major impact on our self esteem. Such understanding of what we need to feel good about ourselves, as provided to us by a typological breakdown, can help how best to tackle the issues that arise out of our perceptions. Self esteem can very easily be dealt with in a type specific manner. I will try and break down some of the aspects for you later in this article, because once you know what drives your self esteem, you will know your buttons and be able to gain control over your emotions.

For those of you who are not familiar on my writings on Typology, I will just clarify the four Temperaments as set out by Myers. If you are unsure about what personality type you are then try this Humanetrics Test. Typologists, myself included, tend to use these temperament categories to simplify the intricate human condition further into a shallower pool of identities, not because we think everyone fits neatly into four boxes but to point out some commonalities like intrinsic drivers. This is only useful when describing some character traits and is by no means an assertion that there are not added complexities at play in the human psyche. Using Temperaments to describe how we relate to our emotions is a good starting point, but reductionism at any level has its drawbacks. There will always be anomalies but more often than not the classification below will be useful for you.

SP’s – also known as Myers Artisans
SJ’s – also known as Myers Guardians
NF’s – also known as Myers Idealists
NT’s – also known as Myers Rationals

The Artisans tend to feel their best foot is forward when others see them as artistic and graceful exuding a sense of effortless freedom. Therefore when they no longer have the grace or poise be it in a fleeting embarrassing moment or a more serious long term illness, you will see such character types start to have their self esteem petals wilt. The fix is the easiest of the four temperaments so help is not far away. The downside is that Artisans tend to be excitable and although can lend an upbeat vibe to those around them with their lively persona, their zest can often be the very cause of a lack of grace or poise momentarily. And, if that doesn’t get the Artisan then the fact that they are also known as the world’s greatest risk takers (the males more so), a mishap of the type to push the self esteem destruct button is also just around the corner. Artisan occupations normally revolve around precision, endurance, strength or timing. These are their intrinsic drives to self-worth. If you are an SP and perhaps in a job that does not allow this, your self esteem could be boosted by taking up a hobby or pastime that helps you display these skills even if only a dance class, workshop, artistic or creative pastime or even an elegant night out. If you have momentarily lost your mojo, seek to increase any activity that plays to your drives and sit back while you effortly and gracefully float back up to the top of your game in a cosy self esteem bubble.

The Guardians on the other hand, aswell as caring about how others perceive them, are more about being impeccable with their word and pride themselves on being thought of as dependable and trustworthy. The typical Guardian male is conscientious whether this is seen with extreme diligence in his profession or in his faithful nature as a husband and father. The female too is often referred to as a loyal wife and mother, normally a fastidious homekeeper who also is found volunteering her time for the school committee for her children, if she is not working often for a worthy cause. Unfortunately, as so much of the SJ self esteem comes from the outside this is often a draw back that they need constant reassurance. The Guardian being such a good caregiver no doubt has a strong inner circle of core friends or family. To combat self esteem issues, it is often useful to turn to such loved ones and ask for help in small ways, something to confirm your worth. Although, this must be used cautiously as external validation should only by acquired in small doses. Perhaps asking your partner to cook you a nice romantic meal or to look after the kids for an hour while you pamper yourself. It is in this moment the SJ needs to use its logical processor and equate that a gift from a non Guardian persona is worth a great boost to their self esteem as the effort afforded to them is given out of love, care and/or respect. If you are an SJ, remember just occassionally you have to help yourself so you can continue helping others but balance that with maintaining integrity in everything you do. Only take on roles you can succeed at for a while, as dependability is key for you when your self esteem takes a knock just concentrate on that you can achieve and gradually increase your obligations as your esteem rises.

The Idealists love to philosophise and hold themselves in highest regard when they are seen as natures true empaths. They inherently feel a natural affinity for how others feel, and will often base their self esteem on how they feel and relate to those closest to them. This can work for a while but as circumstances change or their inner circle respond in unpredictable ways the NF will feel off balance and start to question the relationship, life, their existence and then anything they come into contact with. You can spot an Idealist, as they tend to appear on the surface to only be interested in one close friendship or a select small circle and within those relationships are often heard talking about empathic human relationships. If you fall short of their perception – that self esteem is related to understanding the human condition – they will see that as a flaw, but more importantly when they fall short of their expectation, their belief mechanism takes a huge hit and their self esteem dwindles. Idealists are highly emotional people and their emotions fire off rapidly and then discharge again as rapidly. They do have a good gut feel and pride themselves on this, no doubt this ability comes from the very nature that they are the best type to be able to walk a mile in another’s shoes. If you are an Idealist, then the key to raising your self esteem is in your own self awareness and an understanding that no one can be 100% right about every person, change does happen, nothing is personal and everything is OK just the way it is. Take a step back from the overanalysis of feelings and empathy and regain an inner balance momentarily. Yoga, meditation, relaxation exercises are good for this as is an old fashioned time-out from your daily routine with something that inspires you.

The Rationals are overachievers at the best of times, not content to just have one aspect define their self esteem are often placing the value of themselves on how inventive they have been and how much they feel they have accomplished. These standards are internally set, which gives them a modicum of control over themselves however such standards are often unrealistic, leading to a lack of self esteem. The Rationals do not limit themselves to just the play or work arena, they use every avenue as yet another way to grow, improve, develop, teach increasing the proficiency of themselves and others along the way. The problem is that the Rationals are too self critical compared to the three other categories and sometimes take the hardest hit to their self esteem, not that you would know it because they will only let a few in on their perceived weakness of being anything less than perfect. NT’s are often found in positions of power and the more senior roles within organisations. They are also referred to as Scientists or Strategists so the I variations will gravitate to these positions while the E variants will take the world head on, aiming to lead the leaders. Whether an I or an E, this heirarchy follows NT’s into their personal lives too. The problem with being at the top of any pyramid of rank, is that others will either take pleasure in your temporary set back or not have the ability to lend you the hand necessary to take the first step back to feeling good about yourself. So just as the criticism originated from the NT so does the cure, which is to do what you do best and focus back on learning, teaching and growing. If you have been navel gazing too much then lend a helping hand to someone in need, however if you have been spreading yourself too thin, take time out with a self-help book and start developing another string to your bow.

Whatever type we are, it is clear that all types do suffer the occasional or the more common blow to their self esteem. The best way to remedy that is…

1. Work out your type, find out what makes you tick be it grace, dependability, empathy or achievement.
2. Write a list of the last 10 things you did that showed this aspect of you to its fullest.
3. Take a brief moment out to smile at all you have already achieved, physiology is half the battle to beating psychology.
4. Make an effort to go and do at least one more thing which will increase that part of you today, committing to do this every day until you feel better about yourself.
5. Take a step back from how you view yourself and how others view you and realise that we are all different. We are all the way we are – which is right for us, just the way we are in that moment.
6. Take a deep breath and think how you will feel about the incident in a minute from now, in a month from now, in a year from now, in ten years from now – how important is the perceived ‘mistake’ that just hit your self esteem.
7. Accept yourself and gain a fresh perspective. Realise that it really isn’t as bad as you originally thought, then just let that feeling go and move on.

Thank you to our reader who asked for input on raising self esteem. I hope this article helped.

I look forward to any comments (private messages or below) and as always will endeavour to answer them all.

Complementary Therapies Explained – What is Applied Kinesiology?

Most people know me as a hypnotherapist or life coach, but those who have been reading my current articles on energy therapies will know that my studies also took me through Complementary Therapies amongst other things. In this article I would like to focus on Applied Kinesiology as I have been asked quite a few questions on it lately. It is not something I use often in everyday practice but I do think it has value in the Complementary Therapist’s repertoire.

What is Applied Kinesiology?

Kinesiology comes from the two words Kinesis and Logos meaning motion and discourse respectively. It was discovered by accident when George Goodheart was rubbing a patient’s outer thigh while trying to come up with a solution to relieve severe leg pain symptoms in his client. Remarkably the patient’s pain subsided reminding Dr. Goodheart about Chapman’s work on pressure points leading to further investigations ultimately creating his theories of kinesiology.  Dr Goodheart explains that weak muscles on one side of the body can cause normal opposing muscle to become tight.  From his research believers and practitioners in Applied Kinesiology would expect to find weakness in the opposing muscle to a muscle in spasm and consider the muscle in spasm as the result of a problem not the cause.

Applied Kinesiology works on a similar premise but takes Dr. Goodheart’s work to a different level. It is a form of diagnosis using muscle testing as a primary feedback mechanism to examine the body and it’s functioning. When properly applied, the outcome of an a diagnosis from this school of Applied Kinesiology will determine an alternative form of therapy for the patient, it does this because it draws together the core elements of many complementary therapies and is therefore a main provider of an interdisciplinary approach to health care.

Hypnotherapists, Life Coaches, even Doctors who use applied kinesiology have a distinct advantage over other practitioners as they have specific diagnostic tools to determine the best therapy for the patient be they someone who is sensitive to allergens, someone who needs to break a repeating pattern of psychological reversal or even an injured athlete.

Yes, it is true that Applied Kinesiology tools range from specific muscle treatments designed to normalize muscle activity to treatments designed to aid other damaged tissues like skin, ligaments, tendons and joints. However, this school of complementary medicine is well versed in receiving bad press from some of the scientific community.

According to Wikipedia – “Applied kinesiology (AK) is an alternative medicine method used for diagnosis and determination of therapy. According to practitioners using Applied Kinesiology techniques, it provides feedback on the functional status of the body. Applied Kinesiology is a practice within the realm o alternative medicine and is different from kinesiology which is the scientific study of human movement. AK has been criticized on theoretical and empirical grounds, and characterized as pseudoscience”

More often than not scientists criticise that which they do not know or cannot prove, so it comes as no surprise to me that Applied Kinesiology has had a bad reputation in the scientific community, however there are a strong group of people who believe in its practice and it is arguable, be it a placebo effect or not if something works should we not use it?

It is useful to note here, that Applied kinesiology procedures were never intended to be used as a single method of diagnosis, they are there to aid and enhance standard diagnosis, not replace it. So yes, although a scientist at heart I am pro using anything that can aid the patient get answers that help them on teh journey to a successful and fulfilling life.

So how can we use the information gained from Applied Kinesiology techniques? The applications are numerous however if you are interested please see my upcoming article on Applied Kinesiology’s use in Allergy Testing.

Image reproduced from naturalhealthwellbeing.co.uk

Overcoming Procrastination – Part 2

London Life Coach & Relationship Expert Sloan Sheridan-Williams talks about procrastination. Follow Sloan on Twitter @SloanSW_London and check out Sloan’s website www.sloansw.com

Procrastination is an often talked about problem, however the media often trivialise it using it as the butt of many jokes be it in sitcoms, films, talk shows or stand-up comedy. Although entertaining in the moment and often providing comic relief, it does not provide a solution. Unfortunately, such a solution does involve battling your inner demons and we all know this to be unpleasant however the improvement and success you will achieve will hopefully replace any temporary negative concepts you will have to address on the way.

More often than not the biggest negative contender that comes up in my seminars is blame. I stress to my clients and emphasise this here that this series takes a non-blaming view towards the triggers of your procrastination and focuses mainly on areas for positive improvement and advancement. However as we live in a blame ridden society you may have found yourself procrastinating to either avoid or defend social norms or personal standards where “blame culture” is rife. It is a global norm to spend the majority of  our spare time blaming others, blaming ourselves or looking for someone to blame. Blame is in many countries linked to performance which makes up social values and is often is extrapolated to personal worth. The reason this series does not focus on blame is that, whether internalising or externalising blame, such negativity only hinders our self growth distracting ourselves from spending the time more usefully on improving the situation in front of us and taking responsibility for the remedy which is unrelated to the cause or mistake of that situation. In addition, the “blame culture” we often find ourselves in leads us to create justifications which are nothing more than self deceptions that our subconscious uses to avoid the acceptance of personal responsibility. It has no bearing on solving legitimate problems and only allows us to re-focus our energies on small irrelevant details rather than looking at the big picture.

In addition, the use of the word blame seems synonymous with other negative terms such as lazy, careless, stupid and indolent which only puts up our defence barriers which again hinders rather than fixes the problem. In this article we concentrate on using our brain to reason why we procrastinate making sense of our triggers allowing us to positively alter our brain patterns and reactions resulting in a better solution.

For those of you interested in the science behind the theory, your pre-frontal cortex is responsible for the reasoning aspect of your personality. It is here that you override the brain’s defence mechanisms setting off a protective element to avoid discomfort, hurt or upset. Such an element can be in the form of procrastination.

Below I have highlighted some of the more common procrastination patterns so that you can identify which areas of your life you would like to work on to overcome your brain’s diversion tactics to discomfort.

  • Behavioural Procrastination – having great ideas and plans that never get off the ground and/or a to-do list that never gets quite finished.
  • Deadline Procrastination – often receiving final reminders for your bills or only just making deadlines set by your boss.
  • Decision-making Procrastination – constantly second guessing yourself, deferring making decisions and/or having trouble making the simplest of choices even down to a restaurant menu.
  • Habitual Procrastination – you mean well yet time just seems to pass you by and deadlines arrive before you even realise it.
  • Health Procrastination – not attending the gym even though you’ve paid for membership or feeling overly stress yet not taking time out to relax.
  • Hinderance Procrastination – making people wait in a passive aggressive way or delaying them or yourself.
  • Lateness Procrastination– showing up late for appointments and lacking the ability to be on time even if you want to be.
  • Organisational Procrastination – finding it hard to write down clear, measurable and achievable goals, lacking in plans and living in clutter.
  • Personal Procrastination – knowing you have bad habits but never getting round to breaking them, delaying facing up to problems and having the feeling that you are drifting through life.
  • Social Procrastination – delaying others with a lack of commitment to being your word, inconveniencing others by causing delay, expecting people to accommodate you when you’re late.
  • General Procrastination – you are unable to fulfill your responsibilities, you waste too much time, often under-delivering, do not stick to your priorities, start assignments at the last minute, find ways to extend deadlines, put things off that you’re not passionate about and rarely seem to get things done on time.

Reading the above procrastination patterns, work out which ones strike a chord with you and note them down for later on in our series where I will give you coping strategies for each type of behavioural pattern.

I will also look at the catalysts for the above procrastination patterns which include avoidance, fear of failure, mood, perfectionism, diversion tactics, discomfort aversion, self doubts, low self-esteem, overwhelming information, time management and readiness to change.

After reading this article I would like you to write down your top three procrastination patterns and the catalysts that you feel drive you towards avoiding responsibility. Throughout the series you will become familiar with procrastination forms and styles and the more you learn about these patterns the easier it will be for you to reprogram your habitual responses to your catalysts turning what you previously viewed as procrastination into efficiency.

I look forward to working with you to overcoming your procrastination.

Images reproduced from sherrymalcolm.com and zazzle.ca

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Sloan Sheridan-Williams is a uniquely talented Life Coach helping you with dating & relationships, anxiety, depression, infertility, weight management, self esteem issues, sports performance, public speaking, exam nerves, addictions, phobias and much more.

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Dating Etiquette – Keeping Your Man

London Life Coach & Relationship Expert Sloan Sheridan-Williams talks about dating etiquette. Follow Sloan Life Coach on Twitter @SloanSW_London and check out Sloan’s website www.sloansw.com

Now you have got your man, the next important step is to keep him which means traversing the potential minefields such as meeting his friends, going on your first mini-break, meeting the parents and behaviour in public.

Meeting His Friends

Although many of us are delighted to reach the stage where our man wants to show us off to his friends, once the euphoria has worn off we realise that the first meeting is akin to being thrown into shark-infested water – worse still – without a life jacket! This is an important time for you as while being flattered you can also use this time to scope out your new beau and judge him by the company that he keeps. The first thing to remember is that males are generally guarded with their pack so any invitation shows that you’ve already made it to the next stage.

If his group is mainly male your chat will require slight adaptation minimising all talk of girlie pinks and purples and leaving feelings and emotions at home. Men in general when they are not fire gazing and communicating with a series of grunts tend to banter in an effort to display their wits and their ego. If you try to compete on their level, your one-liners will seem slightly ambitious therefore it is important to be yourself along with a charming smile and a demeanour that you’re easy to be with.

The best tactic is to remain your beau’s shadow every now and again disarming his friends with an indirect complement. They are unlikely to be used to this and they will begin to start a rapport with you.

Remember his friends are not as interested in you as your girlfriends would be in him. Men are far more direct and their humour may even make you the butt of their jokes. The best way to navigate this situation is to not over-think it, respond always in humour and take nothing personally. In addition when meeting his friends, spend more time mingling with them than hanging off his arm like a lost puppy dog. If there is a female friend in his group, suppress any territorial urges you may have and whatever you do don’t compare yourself to her or criticise her to him. The female friend appears to wield much power so often people advise to get them on side, however the best tactic is to treat them like one of the boys and genuinely not notice their gender or let them influence your behaviour thus keeping the power at all times.

Men often criticise and jest their friends, do not be drawn into this trap by joining in with the banter, as the outsider it is possible to cause offence even if you are only agreeing with what others say.

Make sure you meet his friends before he meets yours. It is imperative that you have confidence in your relationship and that there are no cracks that niggle as your girlfriends will pick up on these as quick as a duck takes to water.

As for where and when, if possible choose to meet for drinks as this is less pressured than dinner.

The Mini-Break

Once you’ve made it past meeting the friends it won’t be long before he pops the question – not the proposal – but “do you want to go away for the weekend?”.

Just like the Scouts motto “Be Prepared”, the mini-break is a test drive to whether you can spend 24/7 together in close proximity so it is important to be fully organised enabling you to look good at all times. The trick here is to travel light as you are only equipped with one weekend bag so some location research and weather checks are the order of the day. Make sure you implement an underwear and grooming session before your weekend away and pack a book or local guide-book so you busy yourself up for when and if as most men do he needs some space.

It is traditional for the men to choose the destination of the mini-break and take control. If you are expecting Cannes but end up getting Brighton remember that it is only polite to express the same amount of excitement and enthusiasm as your beau will have put careful thought into your mini-break. Although as in the first part of this series we explain that etiquette dictates that you are not a girl who is easy to get, once you’ve got your man you should now become a woman who is easy to be around. Wherever you go, take in the local culture, restaurants and nightlife and be sure to supply many indirect compliments to his choice of venue and attractions. It is during this period that the focus is entirely on the two of you and rather than falling into the trap of being the perfect housewife and making your man happy, this is an important time to ask yourself whether you enjoy his company, whether he makes you happy, and whether you have just gift wrapped this relationship or is it the real thing.

As for money, in this modern day and age people find it acceptable to go Dutch. Etiquette still dictates that the person who invited the other on a mini-break should pay however as the guest it is only polite to offer to pay for a round of drinks here and there, a pub lunch and maybe a cab ride or two back to the hotel. If you are unequally matched financially then it is perfectly acceptable to have a conversation about who will pay for what before you embark on the trip.

Most importantly keep the mini-break light, fluffy and full of laughter and although little niggles may crop up along the way it is important to ask yourself if it is important to be right or enjoy your holiday.

Meeting the Parents

This part of the relationship can be the biggest minefield of them all so much so that there is a comedy along the same lines starring Ben Stiller, Robert De Niro and Teri Polo. No doubt your encounter will not be as hair-raising as displayed in this film but to guide you on your way ask your other half for a little information about his parents in advance. Typical questions to ask would include:

  • Are they strict or relaxed?
  • What dress code is expected?
  • Will dinner be cosy in the family room or a more formal dining affair for 20 people?
  • What topics of conversation should be avoided at all costs?
  • What individual subjects are each member of the family interested in?

As for dress code, conservative and elegant wins every time, make sure you are comfortable and ready for any occasion packing both a smart and casual outfit if you are staying over.

On greeting the parents it is important to use their title and surname until they invite you to use their first name. It is also the order of the day to take a present – a decent bottle of wine or a plant is acceptable however the more original and personal you can make the gift the better. If the family includes a grandparent or a sibling, it is also good practice to take a token present for them as well.

There is a fine balance between acting like one of the family by mucking in and stepping on the toes of your boyfriend’s mother. Therefore offer to help with domestic chores but defer to the mother, showing that you know your place and that she is ruler of the domestic household. As your boyfriend may be very relaxed at his parent’s home remember that when following his lead you should always increase the formality by a couple of notches, i.e. just because he drinks a few glasses of wine at dinner doesn’t mean that you should.

Over lunch or dinner, do not be a wallflower and enjoy an interesting debate with reasoning but avoid controversy at all costs. During such debate never complain about the injustices of your life or wax lyrical about those less privileged going through hardships in Third World countries. Likewise do not throw out gushing compliments towards the family as it will appear creepy and insincere.

If the parents house is big enough to accommodate you sleeping in different rooms, although it is common knowledge that you have spent at least a night together before meeting the parents, the accepted protocol is to ask for separate rooms.

On leaving thank each member of the family in turn for a wonderful stay and follow it up with a thank you letter within five days of your visit making sure you mention every member of the family present in your thank you note.

Again make sure you have met his parents before introducing him to yours, and when such time comes make sure you prep him with family oddities and off-limits behaviour so that he too can make a good impression with your parents.

Well done on getting this far in coupledom, however remember that it is easy to lose friends and alienate people by giving up much of your previous life and relying on your boyfriend. Make sure to strike an even balance of maintaining your respective lives, not taking each other for granted, restraining from public displays of affection and respecting each others privacy. At this stage above all trust and honesty is the most important part.

Good luck with your relationship. If you have any further questions or comments please leave them below.

Images reproduced from videojug.com, thebestsexetiquette.wordpress.com and blog.okcupid.com

Overcoming Procrastination – Part 1

London Life Coach & Relationship Expert Sloan Sheridan-Williams talks about procrastination. Follow Sloan on Twitter @SloanSW_London and check out Sloan’s website www.sloansw.com

Procrastination affects us all – it is not only the stack of unopened mail, the size 8 garments hanging in your wardrobe when you’re now a size 12, that phone call you dread but know you should make or that deadline imposed on you by your boss that is creeping up on you; but more often than not procrastination involves beneficial or exciting activities that have slipped down your list of priorities. Such activities include going to the gym more, combating a phobia, taking up a new sport or hobby, meeting up with old friends, or even a pamper day with just you time.

It may help you to know that 9 in 10 people procrastinate in at least one area of their life and research from the late 90s shows that as much as 20% of successful business people still squander away their time procrastinating and an enormous 60% of university students do the same.

I have written this series to help diminish your procrastination impulses allowing you to take charge of your life furthering your achievement of everything you not only desire but deserve as well. Procrastination can affect all ages from all walks of life however the coping strategies that I have set out throughout the series will not only educate you but provide you with options and choices in assisting you to minimise if not eradicate the effect that procrastination has on your life.

Please make sure you follow the exercises in this series in the order they are presented, practice each technique until it becomes routine and then, and only then, begin on the next.

Procrastination simply means to put off something until tomorrow, it comes from the Latin pro meaning forward and crastinate which means tomorrow; however for most of us tomorrow never comes and we spend our lives needlessly postponing, delaying and avoiding that which we should have done today. Procrastination itself is comprised of two components – the first part is an impulse to delay normally governed by mood or anxiety and the second part comes from your inner critic which reassures you that your reasoning for delay is acceptable. Therefore one can look at procrastination as having both an active and passive phase, however these phases in themselves often take more brain power and time than if we had carried out the original activity. This in turn makes us operate ineffectively which for some people can result in negative consequences.

You may have heard that the best solution to overcome procrastination is to simply jump in with both feet and action the task now. More often than not this is simple to say but much harder to do. Such advice is rarely sufficient in breaking the procrastination habit because of its many complex features. The first and best step to overcoming procrastination is acceptance that you have a problem and a positive intention to establish control over such. To assist you in the first step towards breaking your procrastination habit follow this 6-step process as bullet pointed below.

  • Stop and take stock of the Big Picture goal then break the task ahead into baby steps and action only the very first goal
  • Resist the urge to deviate from the list of steps that you created in step 1 and re-affirm that you are committed to completing the task
  • Reflect on those inner voices creating excuses and justifications to not complete the task and accept that your subconscious is trying to help you but again re-affirm your commitment to carrying out the task.
  • Use logic and reasoning to understand that the justifications and excuses in step 3 or just a delay tactic and counteract this with three positive statements about why you need to finish the task and how it will feel to have stuck by your word.
  • Review the baby steps needed to complete your task and once you have completed the first one set the rest in motion.
  • Reward yourself by completing any procrastination tactic only when you have completed all steps of your original task.

Through these self-regulating actions you will train yourself to overcome procrastination. Do not be too hard on yourself as even with this technique improvements of 10% each time you employ the technique means that you are well on your way to progressive mastery over procrastination.

In the meantime, for those procrastination moments that you have yet to get a handle on, it would be useful for you to diarise in a journal what they are so that we can analyse them later during this series. The questions to ask yourself in the journal are:

  • What activity have I put off?
  • Why have I delayed this activity?
  • What was my feeling during the delay?
  • What were my thoughts when I first put off my task?
  • What were my justifications after I entered the cycle of procrastination?
  • What was my outcome?

These journal exercises have been used by thousands of clients and although time-consuming are a surprisingly effective way to pattern interrupt the automatic procrastination processes thus enabling you a better understanding of why you do what you do and the triggers behind it.

The overall objective from this exercise is to move away from subjective action and see beyond your automatic processes and allow you with the aid from information gathering exercises later in the series to create an action plan finally curbing your procrastination.

It is really important during these exercises not to be too hard on yourself, often procrastinators are either highly sensitive people or often put in situations where they are blamed. Such environments put people in positions where they self-label themselves “stupid”, “slow” or “less than” which only increases negative feelings such as humiliation and low self-esteem.

Do make sure that you re-affirm to yourself while following this series that procrastination is no more than a habit, it is not something that you intentionally created, it took hold gradually over time and likewise takes time and effort to reverse. You are not alone in being a procrastinator however you are already on your first step to overcoming this challenging part of your life.

Before we finish this article, I’d like you to write out three action steps that you can take now to help you on your way, whether that is buying a journal, becoming more aware of your feelings and thoughts, taking half an hour out once a week to follow the series or listing the reasons that cause you to procrastinate.

I look forward to working with you throughout this series.

Images reproduced from edwardrecommends.com, deviantart.com and fromseremban2melaka.blogspot.com

Dating Etiquette – Getting Your Man

London Life Coach & Relationship Expert Sloan Sheridan-Williams talks about finding Mr Right. Follow Sloan Life Coach on Twitter @SloanSW_London and visit www.sloansw.com

In this day and age, dating is often referred to as romantic roulette. It is a careful balancing game of either acting demure yet approachable so that the old-fashioned man can ride in on his metaphorical white horse sweeping the girl off her feet or instead taking charge of the situation living my the philosophy of “she who dares wins” and making the moves herself.

The dating game is not easy however the best outcomes normally occur when you work through the unspoken dating etiquette rules to attract your desired object of affection’s attention.

The first thing to note is that the impulsive female can send most decent boys running scared leaving only the men who want to rack you up as a notch on their bedpost so subtlety is the name of the game; a flirtatious glance, a subtle approach and the exchange of business cards puts the ball firmly in the boy’s court to phone you. Waiting might be hard but even in this day and age calling the guy first is a big no-no.

The best way to become noticed is to choose your company carefully. Preferably downsize the group to just two or three people. Master the art of looking popular yet relaxed, catch the eye of the gentleman you wish to pursue and hold his gaze and smile sweetly. In a perfect world, the guy should approach you but in the modern world so many females approach men that they have become lazy.

If you feel able to approach him directly, strike up a natural conversation and avoid chat up lines at all costs. Keep the conversation short and sweet, make an excuse to leave and if they have not asked for your number then it is perfectly acceptable to say “I’m sorry I have to go and join my friends now. It’ll be fun to meet up some time. Would you like to swap numbers?”. If he takes your number and does not call, chalk this up to experience and move on. If however he gives you his number yet doesn’t take yours, call once leaving a message and leave the rest up to him.

If this goes swimmingly then you should by now have discussed your first date. The correct etiquette is that whoever asked for the date takes care of the booking, the venue, the time and the dress code.

More often than not the man will choose dinner and drinks so make sure you dress appropriately for the restaurant chosen. No matter how fancy the restaurant, power hair-dos and bold make-up are not the order of the day. A girl next door natural look is more appropriate and enchanting. As for dress code, go for elegant and sophisticated showing minimal skin but use textures such as silk or chiffon to bring out your best qualities. Remember to focus on the upper half of your body including accessorising as this will be on display more than the rest of you.

Being five minutes late is acceptable but any more looks pretty arrogant. On arrival, the gentleman should already be there and to lighten the mood go straight in breaking the ice with a peck on the cheek.

Once you are seated and have ordered, keep your conversation nice and fluffy. Avoid talking about marriage, children, work difficulties and the like remembering at all times that he is your date and not your therapist. A successful date will include engaging conversation on art, culture, life and hobbies. Remember men like to advertise their success as a form of status, even if you are a career woman resist the urge to reply in kind again keeping the conversation light. If the conversation feels stilted, use this time to ask the man questions that you know you have in common, do not be put off if he doesn’t return the questions just use this opportunity to give your own point-of-view to avoid the conversation becoming too one-sided.

If you are not interested in your date then going Dutch is the universal sign to keep things in the friends zone. If however you are interested in a second date, the correct etiquette is for the invited to pay the bill. During this moment set up a silent smiling eye look with a genuine thank you followed up by an additional thank you by text or e-mail the next day.

For those of you playing it cool, you should end your first date there however in this modern day and age many dates end up in the one night stand. If you like the guy, etiquette dictates that no matter how attracted you are to him you should at least hold out until the third date. However as a consenting adult if you choose to go back to his place or vice versa, do be prepared that this may be interpreted as a no strings attached encounter.

If a one night stand is what you’ve decided to do, remember that any dark alley gropery is not lady-like and also don’t force taxi drivers to endure any indiscretions. Once home remember it’s never too late to change your mind but if you don’t then reduce your expectations for a long term prospect although never say never.

After the act, it is polite to get to know your conquest under the guise of shedding a little more meaning and memorability to the encounter however if this is obviously not appropriate then steal yourself away, make your excuses, depart with a good reason and hold your head up high as you leave. If he has come back to yours, the polite thing to do is offer him breakfast however, if he declines, let him do the chasing and consider that an end to the encounter.

If however you have made it passed the third date and it is inevitable that both of you wish to take the budding relationship to the next level it is perfectly acceptable after the third date to act on your feelings. Make sure you look amazing for the date, apply some scent to your pulse points and ensure your underwear is stylish and sophisticated. In these modern times it is perfectly acceptable to pack a toothbrush, clean underwear and condoms in your handbag.

Prior to having sex, etiquette dictates that communication is paramount and this means that you should feel free enough to speak about contraception, sexual health, sexual preferences and your feelings.

Remember at all times that it is perfectly acceptable to have a change of heart but if this is not the case keep up the humour quotient and expect that any first time sexual relationship may be clumsy and/or mind-blowing, so manage your expectations.

Also ensure that if you do share your house with a flatmate that you remember that discretion is important. Having already built rapport with your potential boyfriend, any need to do a mad dash in the morning should not be present in either of you however good or bad the previous night went. It is a crucial part of the dating process to spend the first morning after together even if either of you are slightly out of your comfort zones. This can be as simple as relaxing over breakfast and the morning papers or going out to grab an early brunch. Some couples prefer to spend the whole day together however it is also acceptable to manufacture a prior engagement to give yourself some space to decide what you really want. The overall messgae here is to be good company, avoid being clingy and definitely do not overstay your welcome. It is common practice for the man to chase the next day and at all costs do not be the first to contact once you’ve left.

Obviously there are many variations of the above model but the take home message is to be easy to be with, fun to talk to, to choose when you’re ready to have sex unrelated to peer pressure and don’t chase the guy.

If you have any further questions, do not hesitate to send them to us through the Questions & Answers page and have at http://datingreviewer.org/victoriabrides-review/

 

Happy dating!

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Can Hypnosis Help Me?

London Life Coach & Clinical Hypnotherapist Sloan Sheridan-Williams talks about hypnosis. Follow Sloan on Twitter @SloanSW_London and check out Sloan’s website www.sloansw.com

Thank you very much for your question. We often get asked if hypnosis can deal with this type of health issue so I thought it best to clarify what hypnosis can help with, what life coaching can help with, and when it’s time to seek a different therapist.

Hypnotherapy is a form of therapy that allows you to understand how the subconscious or unconscious communicates with your conscious mind and how it does most things for your protection – although its idea of protection is sometimes very different to what you actually need.

The types of things that hypnosis works well with are things like:- Weight Loss, Stop Smoking, Fears and Phobias, Eating Disorders, Stress, IBS, Interview Nerves, Exam Nerves, Addictions, Self Confidence & Self Esteem, and Infertility to name just a few.

On the other hand, life coaching deals with the conscious mind taking you into a new chapter of your life and leaving the old one behind. It is very good for letting go of ex-boyfriends, work colleagues you no longer get on with, and painful memories that belong in the past.

At its best, life coaching can help you achieve a life you both desire and deserve whilst all the time breaking things down into manageable, easy to complete tasks. A good life coach can explain your personality type, work on your intrinsic drives and create coping strategies incorporating all their tried and tested techniques to help you attain each and every one of your goals.

In relation to your question about whether hypnosis is clinically effective, I would highlight a quote from the Royal Society of Medicine which states:

“A wealth of scientific evidence has emerged in the last decade relating to the scientific basis of mind and body interactions. This has allowed for a neurologically plausible model of hypnosis to be developed which aids our understanding of the role of hypnosis in health and enhances the clinically effectiveness of hypnosis.”

It is excellent that we have seen hypnotherapy be recognised by a body of such standing as the Royal Society of Medicine and hypnosis can be useful for a lot of your complaints apart from your muscle complaint of Repetitive Strain Injury.

I would like to highlight here that Bowen Technique therapists across the country are now conducting a study into treatment of this particular type of injury. If you are interested in being treated by a Bowen Technique therapist, log on to www.bowen-therapy.com and you will be able to find a practitioner taking part in the study near you.

As for the other conditions you mentioned, it would be really useful for you to see either a hypnotherapist particularly trained in clinical hypnosis and/or a life coach.

Unfortunately until hypnotherapists are more widely recognised, which hopefully will come very soon after the Royal Society of Medicine’s acknowledgement, we are not able to offer any treatment on the NHS. You can get referrals from some NHS doctors but you do not need them. Saying this, a note from your doctor is very useful if dealing with a clinical hypnotherapist.

I am sorry that I can’t see all clients unless they are located in London or Cambridge but I will e-mail you personally to give you details of other therapists in your area.

For anyone else wanting to try hypnosis or life coaching, more information can be found at www.baileybradmore.com.

Image reproduced from spiritcharmers.co.uk

How is Profiling People Useful?

London Life Coach & Relationship Expert Sloan Sheridan-Williams talks about profiling. Follow Sloan on Twitter @SloanSW_London and check out Sloan’s website www.sloansw.com

Being able to profile someone is not a complete science because no matter how good you are at recognising the facial patterns for surprise, happiness, disgust etc… for true interpretation of why the emotion just flashed on the face you need just that little bit more insight. Sometimes, life provides you with the missing piece to the puzzle, but sometimes you need to delve deeper.

Staring at this face in the audience of my group talk the other day, it was so obvious  9B+24C… +62D… 5B+7B+24D… +4c.

No, I didn’t accidently press number lock! This is how facial profilers code the movements of your face.

Simplified the above means a slight nose wrinkle and more pronounced lip press followed shortly by eyes glancing sideways then an upper lid raise, eyelid tightner and an even strong lip press concluded with a eyebrow lower. Even more simply, the face was angry, but that is only a starting point because I had no idea why the anger was present. I had yet to meet this person, so any attempt to hazard a guess as to the exact cause of the problem would be my perception and not a factual judgement, which as a J type is against my make-up anyway. Perceptions in general are a dangerous water for any profiler to dip their toe in, acquisition of the facts is always necessary for a thorough interpretation.

In life there are lines, yellow lines at the tube station to mark the point where the platform is no longer safe to stand on, red lines that mark a point where accessible turns to off limits and white lines, often in sport, to mark a boundary for play. Whether these lines represent safety, security, conformity or merely guidance they are all there for a reason. If you choose to cross the line you do so at your own risk… But what happens when that line is internal, a personal boundary of sorts. Most likely a quick flash of 9B+24C… +62D… 5B+7B+24D… +4c! At this point, all one can conclude from registering that face is that a personal line had been crossed, but what and by whom was still left unanswered.

People can’t help themselves, they see a physical line they just want to cross it and it’s not just INTJ’s that are the greatest culprits of rule breaking/aversion. It’s seen across the signs less so in some SF typology though. Maybe it is the thrill of going to the unknown or forbidden, a sort of personal dare who knows. However, personal lines/boundaries once crossed are slightly taboo as once the line has been violated it feels almost impossible to go back. This concept and it’s remedy is interestingly discussed in the comedy movie ‘Anger Management’.

During the lunch break, I took time out to speak to the gentleman and found out that he was annoyed at the interruptions by a fellow audience member. The talk finished at 4:30pm and he was concerned we would not cover all the material in time due to his colleague acting as if he owned the room. There it was, the obvious reason and the underlying reason, plain as day. This gentleman was both angry at his colleague as he said but also angry at himself that he had not developed assertiveness skills. I continued to talk to him and uncovered that he got passed over at work for a promotion the previous week amongst other things in his home life. After a few assertiveness sessions in the following weeks at my next group session with the firm, our subject was happily contributing with the others and reportedly up for a promotion.

The gift about seeing that which others try to hide even from themselves, is the ability to help them move on and grow. In this case, put the lines back up, respect them, play the game within your boundaries and above all assert such when needed.

And, when you manage to do that just as my client did, once you make it back across the line, you find your life starts to unfold in ways that you only dreamed of.

Profiling is an invaluable skill in psychotherapy arenas etc… but this is only one aspect, I will endeavour to write other articles on its other uses over time.

I look forward to your comments, either below or send them to us via our contact pages if you wish them to be anonymous.

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How Do We Rid Ourselves of Negative Emotions?

London Life Coach & Clinical Hypnotherapist Sloan Sheridan-Williams talks about negative emotions. Follow Sloan on Twitter @SloanSW_London and check out Sloan’s website www.sloansw.com

Thank you for your question. There are many ways to rid ourselves of unwanted negative emotions but further to my response on energy therapies in one of my previous articles I thought it would be interesting to look at how we rid ourselves from negative emotions via energy psychology. There are other ways to deal with the same issue and as most people reading this will know, as a hypnotherapist/life coach myself I also use those techniques when addressing this problem. However, for the purposes of this article I am going to focus mainly on energy therapy.

How do we rid ourselves of negative emotions?

The basic factor that encapsulates energy psychology and all other meridian energy therapies is the fact that they base themselves on the belief that “All negative emotions are caused by a disruption in the body’s energy system.”

This disruption can be measured and is calibrated in units called SUD also known as Standard Units of Discomfort. Such a measurement system was first used in order to evaluate a therapeutic technique called systematic desensitisation as developed by Joseph Wolpe (1958), but they are now common place and used as a standard evaluative measure of the success of energy psychology treatments. The optimum read is Zero i.e no discomfort and this is completely achievable with this form of therapy.

Often client’s come in for treatment and they say that they want to lose weight or quit smoking but however hard they try they just cannot achieve their goal. This is called psychological reversal and can be described as when the subconscious mind does not perform as the conscious mind requires. For example the client who says they want to lose weight may have a secondary gain embedded in their subconscious that prevents them from carrying out their conscious will, perhaps their love of food, or a belief that thin people are unhappy or that thin people are unhealthy. Although these beliefs may not be based on objective facts and evidence, they will feel very real to the client and will hinder their attainment of the original goal.

These beliefs and or secondary gains will disrupt the body’s energy system, and as we saw in my previous article, they can be addressed with many of the energy psychologies available. However, I have chosen to look at EFT as devised by Gary Craig (who trained with Dr Callahan the brains behind thought Field Therapy). Gary Craig reduced TFT to make a simpler approach more accessible and applicable. Craig reduced the 361 meridian points down to 13 which are used in EFT with the first 12 being percussed no matter what the emotional upset followed by a 9 step Gamut on the 13th point.

An overview on the process I would use with a client if they came to me for a treatment in this area (if they did not want to go down the route of hypnosis) would be as follows:-

I would start with the Set up. The “Set-Up Protocol” refers to the process by which the psychological reversal (PR) is solved. It consists of finding one’s sore spot (most likely found on the right or left side of the chest). This point is a pressure point/reflex on the lymphatic system. The sorer the spot is an indication of how strong the psychological reversal. Once found the client would make an opening statement that resonates such as ‘I deeply and profoundly love and accept myself’. More often than not this will not feel comfortable for the client and we would work together on finding out how true each statement is on a scale of 1 to 10 and then re-evaluating after the percussion of all the points. Once the set up point has been calibrated the 12 step tapping routing can commence.

After completion of this the final stage is called the 9 Gamut Routine.

The 9 Gamut routine is carried out by continually tapping on the TH03 meridian point while following a 9 step routine slightly oversimplified this would be – eyes closed, eyes open, eyes down right, eyes down left, rotate eyes clockwise, rotate eyes anticlockwise, hum, count to five and hum again.   Its purpose is to engage and balance the right and left hemispheres of the brain – creating activity and balance bilaterally will also increase the number of neuron firing in each hemisphere allowing communication as well as balance.

Once this has been achieved the original statement would be re-evaluated and the client would then see how they feel about the change. More often than not clients who are new to this type of therapy are surprised at how much emotion is let go by what appears on the surface as such a simple process. The great thing about tapping is that you can do it at home and in between sessions be improving each and every day.

I am pleased to be able to use this procedure in my treatments where necessary and when the client is interested in a different approach to the issue before them. If you have any further questions contact me through City Connect, leave a comment or ask a question through our Q+A page.

Images reproduced from ehow.co.uk and attract-a-life-of-abundance.com

Should I Tell Her I Love Her?

London Life Coach & Relationship Expert Sloan Sheridan-Williams gives some relationship advice. Follow Sloan on Twitter @SloanSW_London and check out Sloan’s website www.sloansw.com

Vincent van Gogh once said “Love many things, for therein lies the true strength, and whosoever loves much performs much, and can accomplish much, and what is done in love is well done”

I’m sorry to hear that you haven’t spoken to your sister for nearly 3 years, but am pleased circumstance is throwing you a chance meet at your cousin’s wedding.

The fact that you have asked the question is a clear indicator you are looking for resolve.

A lifetime of love and not just the romantic kind but the unconditional and friendship kind. Now there’s a miracle. We all want to be loved…to be happy but we tend to be scared to show we love until someone shows us first. Our inability to show love and compassion due to the fear of rejection and the choices we make because of it, these are the things that tear us down and sabotage our happiness. However, when something bad happens, our instinct is to reach out and grab the special people around us, the ones who matter the most, the ones we take for granted all the time and tell them how precious they are to us, how knowing them makes our life better every single day that we are alive. In those moments our fear of rejection is superseded by our love.

Is there really any reason we should only have this courage in the face of adversity, death, tragedy….surely not… perhaps this wedding, a joyous occassion anyway, is the perfect place to mend the rift.

In general we all need to look to the vibes we give out before we criticise those we get back. So in summary, prepare yourself for the worst but give it your best attempt as then whatever happens you know you held up your end with dignity.

Good luck.

Dating in the Workplace – Recipe for Disaster?

London Life Coach & Relationship Expert Sloan Sheridan-Williams talks about workplace dating. Follow Sloan on Twitter @SloanSW_London and check out Sloan’s website www.sloansw.com

Dating at work is definitely becoming more commonplace but just because everyone else is doing it, does that mean you should too? If that was the case then I’d dye my hair the new trendy shade of orange in the style of Pixie Geldof and watch as my clients flocked anywhere but my therapy couch!

Dating is a form of interaction - in the olden days more a courtship. With the hours of workers increasing and the recession playing its part in the reduction in socialising, is it any wonder we are looking to find love over the photocopier?

The muddy waters tend to appear if you work in very close proximity or the hierarchy of either of your positions has an effect on your working life.

I am not saying you cannot meet the perfect person for you at work, but just before you jump in with both feet, perhaps ask yourself:

1. Is this just a natural progression as we spend so much time together and we would like to get to know each other on a romantic level?

2. Would I still have chosen to date my current object of affection if I managed my time better, accepted a few more invitations out with my friends and opened myself up to meeting new people?

If your answer to the first question was yes, perhaps take the leap but don’t forget your safety net. If you answered yes to the second, run while you still can – you deserve better.