Posts Tagged ‘Relaxation’

Reiki Level One – Class

Sunday, June 14th, 2015

Are you ready to welcome the gentle energy of Reiki into your life?

Reiki is all about releasing that which no longer serves us and welcoming balance into our lives. This is very gentle, but don’t let that fool you – it’s quite powerful. In fact it can be life changing.

Serenity is offering a class for Level One Students

Friday, June 19th                                                                                                                        10a – 3p                                                                                                                                   Oxford, WI

Participants are always welcome to share their own thoughts, beliefs and experiences and expectations about Reiki. We will discuss the history and philosophy of Reiki, all in an interactive, safe environment. The Reiki class experience includes learning about traditional Reiki hand positions as well as discussion about trusting your own Reiki intuition. Each class member will give and receive a full Reiki session.

Each will be attuned to Reiki. You will receive your own Reiki manual and of course a certificate of completion for Reiki Level 1.

To register for this class, please contact Sandy via email:  Serenity@SandyWalden.com

I look forward to sharing this Reiki energy with you.

Namaste,                                                                                                                                                                                         Sandy

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hypnosis – Pregnancy and Childbirth

Sunday, October 16th, 2011

I remember a couple of hundred years ago, when I was moving through pregnancy; we attended a couple of childbirth classes where they told us to find something to focus on during childbirth. We were told that if we focused on our chosen object that the entire experience would be much easier. I don’t remember being told why it would be easier, or perhaps I just wasn’t listening. That is entirely possible. Oh yeah, I also remember learning that we should not make our partner or spouse our focal point. Good news for John as he figured I focus on him enough while screaming and yelling on a normal basis, not what he wanted during the stress of welcoming our baby. 🙂

You are probably aware that pregnancy and childbirth are completely natural occurrences. Yet I distinctly remember the horror stories beginning as soon as I told anyone that I was pregnant. Oh my goodness! I learned that I would be incredibly uncomfortable for the entire time. Morning sickness would be horrible. I was told again and again that by the time that baby put in an appearance I would be incredibly grateful to have this experience over. Really? And then there were the scary stories about childbirth itself. I won’t even go into some of the horrific stories that were shared with me about giving birth. I remember thinking that I just didn’t believe it had to be that way. I hoped to have more than one child and if the entire experience was that horrific, then even child #1 was going to have a lot of making up to mama in the years after birth.

From some of the things I heard and read it sounded as though this process was really the most outlandish, complicated and unreasonably painful idea ever. In fact, I couldn’t believe that the human race had continued if indeed this was the way pregnancy and childbirth were fated to proceed.

The truth is that I had pretty easy pregnancies. I went through childbirth 3 times, each one very different, but each resulting in a strong, healthy baby boy. I felt good during pregnancy. Yes, I experienced morning sickness; in fact it lasted most of my pregnancy each time. But as silly as this sounds, it really didn’t bother me that much. Other than that, I felt strong and very healthy. Almost like this was a normal, human experience.

Same thing goes for childbirth and recovery. Oh never doubt that I tell my boys precisely how long each delivery took, but it was not nearly as horrible or painful as I had been led to expect, and recovery was a breeze for me.

Pregnancy is a normal, human experience. Your body will change to accommodate the baby, but you don’t need to suffer while these changes occur. Morning sickness is mostly a result of hormonal changes that your body is going through, again for the baby. Well, like all chemical changes that occur in our body, this is controlled by our mind. There’s some really good news here. Hypnosis can help. Hypnosis is a natural, easy way to deal with morning sickness and other discomforts generally associated with pregnancy. Working with a hypnotist is a terrific way to release the feelings of nausea and truly enjoy your pregnancy. After all, this is the time when you are getting excited about welcoming a new little one into your family. Because hypnosis is simply enhanced focus and concentration, it is completely, entirely, absolutely natural.

You experience hypnosis on a regular basis, whether or not you are aware. When you are so engrossed in that new book that you don’t hear anyone in the room until they tap you on the shoulder, you’re experiencing a trance. Now come back down from the ceiling and let’s explore a little bit more.

Anyone can have a good hypnotic experience. And the good news is that the more frequently you deliberately go into trance, the better you are at allowing beneficial changes to occur for you. Be assured that as your  hypnotist I cannot make you do anything against your will. You will still be who you are, but hypnosis allows you to the opportunity to make some changes that allow you to live a happier, healthier life. Like moving through or simply not experiencing morning sickness. Now I say that is an easier way to move through pregnancy.

Of course hypnosis can address other pregnancy related issues. In fact, you name it and we can talk about it. To your benefit.

Childbirth. Are you ready for it? Let’s face it, no matter how much you are now enjoying this pregnancy, at some point that little one has got to come out. And despite the horror stories that abound, the truth is that childbirth is also a completely natural occurrence. It is entirely possible to have a fairly comfortable delivery. Again, hypnosis is a wonderful alternative to receiving drugs which can have a multitude of side effects. Now let me be clear, I would never say not to listen to your doctor, that would be foolish. What I’m saying is that if you use hypnosis, you may not need any sort of medications for pain relief during delivery. This may also save your spouse or partner from having crushed hand syndrome which my hubby insists was the result of my drug free deliveries. But I digress…

Now, it’s important that I point out that it’s not reasonable to find yourself in labor and then decide to use hypnosis to get through this process. You really need to begin either before or during pregnancy. This will allow you to physically, mentally and emotionally prepare for the process. Be assured that when you are prepared, you will know just what to do with that focal point and it will come naturally to you. Just like this entire experience.

Hypnosis is simply one more tool that you can use to move through your pregnancy feeling better. It can help alleviate morning sickness, aches and pains that may occur as your body is stretching to accommodate Little One. Hypnosis can relieve insomnia that often accompanies pregnancy as well as a myriad of other discomforts. Planning for your delivery using hypnosis is a very healthy choice. It is an excellent way to minimize discomfort and distress for Mom and as everybody knows, if Mama is happy, everyone else is happy as well.

Namaste,

Sandy

http://www.sandywalden.com/hypnosis/

 

 

Meditation Musing – Posture

Saturday, October 16th, 2010

There are many thoughts about the posture one should take when meditating with many Ways presuming that their Way is the only correct method. For many of us most of these “correct” ways are not practical or possible but we still meditate and we still derive benefit from our meditation.

Why does it matter?

Unless one sees meditation as a form of penance or punishment a primary aspect of our posture and position is to be comfortable. Most of us find it difficult to Sit for long periods of time if we are not comfortable. Trying to hold an uncomfortable posture can certainly be a distraction if our purpose is to remain in the Now. Most of us find little benefit if our meditations center around “I hurt Now”. Few of us would find it a beneficial mantra.

The Zen master Shunryu Suzuki, generally credited with bringing Zen to America and the author of the seminal book Zen Mind, Beginner’s Mind, tells us that we Sit with our legs crossed as a way of minimizing the duality of our body. When we stand or sit as in our normal manner we have a left side and a right side. When we sit with our legs crossed we have the right foot on the left leg and the left foot on the right leg. This is intended to merge the right and left sides of our bodies, facilitate the connection between the right and left sides of our brain, and remove or minimize our dualistic perceptions of ourselves. When we sit in a crossed leg position we are also creating a tripod stance, generally thought of as the epitome of stability. This stability of posture is thought to help provide us with a stability of mind.

Most Ways tell us that we should Sit with a straight back or spine, generally as a way to encourage or facilitate the movement of our energy (ki or chi). This emphasis on posture and head positioning can serve other purposes for the student of meditation. One purpose is to provide a focus for the mind, that is, to occupy the mind with the task of monitoring posture in order to keep the mind in the present moment. Another purpose is to allow the Master to see if and when his students allow their posture to change, usually indicating a loss of concentration or wandering from the Now. At this point the Master corrects the student in whatever manner he uses, returning the student to the Now.

For our purposes, let’s move from the ideal to the practical.

Meditating in any posture is much better than not meditating at all. Most of the meditators I know sit in a chair and many of them derive great benefits from their Sitting.

Keeping the back straight does allow energy to flow through the body efficiently but it is also the optimal position for the use of our lungs. By sitting up straight we allow ourselves to take maximum advantage of the benefits of abdominal breathing which provides maximum blood and organ oxygenation and triggers the parasympathetic nervous system, activating a “relaxation response” in the body. Probably just as important is that our bodies have developed the way they have for a reason and when the human spine is properly positioned we actually use gravity to help support us.

The position that we use when we Sit can often become a part of our practice and arranging ourselves in a particular way at a particular time can be a signal to our body and brain that we are about to meditate. When I Sit at home I sit with my legs crossed in a large cushioned chair. When I Sit in the zendo I sit with my legs crossed on a meditation cushion. This is the Way I have learned over many years. More importantly, to me, is that I do many things when I sit down. I do only one thing when I sit with my legs crossed. I Sit.

Serenity is our zendo and we are located at 13825 W. National Ave. Suite 100,
New Berlin WI 53151. If you are in the Milwaukee area and would like information about our Meditation Groups or are interested in our New Meditator workshops, or would like one-on-one meditation coaching please contact me at jbarrett10@wi.rr.com. We also appreciate constructive comments or subject suggestions for this blog.

Namaste,
Jim

Meditation Musing – Rhythms

Saturday, September 18th, 2010

Some form of meditation is practiced by many cultures and different cultures have developed many different ways to help its practitioners archive the desired mental state. A very common form of assistance is one that enhances the mental rhythms of meditation.

While it is unlikely that early Shamans and Holy people knew much about brainwave frequencies and functions, they early on recognized that certain beats and rhythms seemed to affect them profoundly. The easiest method of providing these beats and rhythms was with a drum and indeed, some form of drum or similar percussion instrument is found in most cultures. Meditators today have many options and technologies to help them get to that place we go when we Sit and the process of entrainment is one of them.

Entrainment is the method of using sound frequencies to lead our brain to a particular mental state by providing it with the frequencies that it will give off when in the desired state. As an example, the brains of many meditators begin to generate alpha waves when they reach a deep meditative state. These waves are timed at about 8 to 12 cycles per second. Alpha state entrainment will provide the brain with sounds in the 8-12 cycles per second rate with the goal of leading the brain into that state in which it will begin to generate brainwaves in the same range. When successful, the brain is led into that deep meditative state one is striving for.

The problem is that most brainwave frequencies are below the typical human hearing threshold, particularly of adults whose threshold usually gets higher and higher with age. Getting our brains to hear these rhythms requires more than just beating on a drum.

There is a process in the science of sound that shows us that if we mix two tones together we will produce the two individual tones, the sum of the two tones and the difference between the two tones. For our purposes, if we hear a 200 cycle tone in our left ear and a 210 cycle tone in our right ear, our brain will be able to perceive the 10 cycle difference harmonic and react accordingly. The 200 and 210 cycle tones are very audible to our ears and the 10 cycle tone is in the middle of the alpha band and may lead the brain into a deep meditative state. Since the desired sounds are below our hearing range they are often called sub-audible tones (not to be confused with subliminal messages, which may be covered in a future blog). We could also have two drums, at two different beat rates, providing our ancient Shamans with the same results.

When sleeping, the brain generally settles into delta wave activity which is in the 1 to 4 cycle per second range. By the methods discussed above we can provide the brain with delta waves and often encourage the brain to fall asleep. Theta waves, about 4-8 cycles per second seem to lead to deeper sleep, and when sustained while awake cause a deep meditative state that is often very creative and intuitive.

Many recordings that use entrainment recommend the use of headphones for experiencing the full effect of the technology. It is important to note that if the recording was created specifically for use with headphones listening to it without headphones can be disorienting and perhaps confusing.

I have used many different entrainment recordings but my favorites are generally from Brain Sync (www.brainsync.com), created by Kelly Howell. With a wide variety of titles to choose from and free downloads to try I have always found them to provide good quality recordings that work for me. This Serenity link; http://www.sandywalden.com/recommended.php will lead you to some of those recordings we like the most.

Namaste,
Jim

Relax and Recharge Retreat

Wednesday, August 25th, 2010

It’s all about you!

Join us for a weekend dedicated to giving you time to relax, rejuvenate and reconnect with your soul.

Your hosts Sandy Walden, Holistic Life Coach and Reiki Master, Teacher along with Melissa Heisler Personal and Business Coach are dedicated to providing you with group activities as well as one on one time.

This retreat is intended to encourage you to put yourself first as you rest, relax and rejuvenate. You may participate in meditation or yoga, create your personal vision board, enjoy a stress-relieving Reiki session, and release old patterns with PSYCH-K, journal, read, take walks or simply nap. All while sharing the company of other strong, nurturing women.

While there are many activities offered there is no fixed schedule as flexibility and serving your needs is top priority. No rules, simply opportunities.

Healthy meals and snacks will be provided.

Gathering time – Friday, October 15 @ 12 noon
Departure time – Sunday, October 17 @ 3pm

Location – Galena, IL
Cost – $300.00

For more information regarding the retreat, please contact Sandy at (414) 378.8764 or Serenity@SandyWalden.com.

Meditation Musings – Mindfulness

Saturday, August 21st, 2010

Mindfulness has been defined by the psychologist and meditation teacher Jon Kabat-Zinn as paying attention in a particular way: on purpose, in the present moment, and non-judgmental.  Mindfulness is also a meditation technique in which one allows thoughts, images, feelings, and body sensations to pass through the mind without reacting to or becoming involved with, those things.

If, while meditating, one notices an itch on the end of the nose or in the middle of the back the meditator recognizes the sensation and allows it to pass. Simply, ‚I have an itch‚  No attachment, no internal discussion, just ‚ I have an itch. Most of the time, after acknowledgment, the itch fades away and your mind has already moved on. We use the gentle, persistent returning to the Now to dismiss these sensations from our mind.

If you are a regular meditator and particular thoughts or sensations keep arising during your sitting you will take note of them, return to the moment and ponder them at a later time. Quite often simply becoming aware of the recurring thoughts or images can provide a very clear picture of what’s causing us to lose our center and/or grounding.

Please note the particulars of the definition cited above: on purpose, in the present moment, and without judgment.

We practice mindfulness on purpose. We decide it is a useful aspect of meditation, we become sensitive to it and it becomes part of our life. When we practice mindfulness in the zendo and with our sangha it’s very hard not to take it out into our daily lives.

We practice mindfulness in the present moment, in the Now. The Now is the place most meditation starts but when moved into our daily world mindfulness in the Now provides us with the real context of the events and emotions we experience, not the context we impose upon them.

We practice mindfulness without judgment. We accept what is, simply because it is. As the author R.A. Heinlein once wrote, ‚the observed phenomena requires no explanation, it simply exists‚. Observing without judgment keeps us from jumping to conclusions. How many times have we made hasty assumptions about a situation or person and later discovered that if we had just kept ourselves open and nonjudgmental we would been saved a great deal of embarrassment? This same concept dispels the ‚why me?‚ and it’s not fair‚ kind of thinking. Whatever it is, it just is.

Mindfulness can be used to help us relieve stress and anxiety simply by allowing it to pull us back into the Now. Stopping the whirling thoughts helps us move to a more stable mental place. When our technological world starts to overwhelm us a return to the Now of nature can reset our physical and mental clocks from the frantic pace of today’s techno-environment to the unique tempo nature imposes upon herself. We must never forget that it’s also our natural tempo and anything else is artificial.

Personally, I think I’ll go outside and mindfully feel the breeze on my face, smell the flowers in the garden and enjoy the Now.

Namaste
Jim

Will Reiki Cure Me?

Saturday, July 31st, 2010

Maybe, maybe not.

I bet you wanted more than that didn’t you? Here’s the full scoop, I simply cannot say and neither can anyone else. When I offer Reiki to someone it’s with the intention that the Reiki do for that person what is for their highest good. I simply cannot predict nor judge what that will look like.

Reiki is by definition life-force energy. Our personal energy becomes disrupted by negativity or imbalance of any sort. Thoughts, emotions, physical distress, all can knock our energy out of balance and may manifest as ailments on any level, physical, mental, emotional or spiritual. When you receive Reiki the energy flows to offer you balance once again. However, how and when you receive that energy is up to you on both a conscious and subconscious level.

When I offer Reiki to a client I ask them to intend that the energy will help them to release the negativity which no longer serves their highest good. It is important however to note that I have no way of knowing what the receiver is ready to release. If we are ready on all levels to heal then the healing may well begin. That healing may begin on a spiritual level and offer physical relief, either partial or complete. The balance that is restored to a client begins the healing on whatever level is for their highest good at that moment.

Healing has many definitions. It may the complete resolution of a problem, or it may be temporary relief of certain symptoms. For instance, I occasionally suffer from shoulder pain. While I may ask for relief from this pain during a Reiki session, until and unless I am ready to release the mental and emotional issues which manifest themselves as that pain, it will recur in time.

Am I asking for temporary relief or long term healing? Am I willing to make the changes to my life which will bring about healing? These changes may mean respecting and loving myself enough to take excellent self-care. It could be forgiving someone who has hurt me, releasing old grievances, reducing work or family stress, etc.

When my dog Indy had his strokes, I found myself offering him Reiki to heal him on whatever level was appropriate for him. I had no way of knowing if this meant restoration to his former strong, athletic self or minimizing his discomfort and bringing him peace as he passed form this life. All I knew for sure was that the Reiki would calm Indy, and do what was truly best for him.

What all of this means is that I can and will make absolutely no promises about what your Reiki experience will look or feel like. I assure you that Reiki can never do harm, only good. While some clients report dramatic healing experiences that is not the case for everyone. Reiki will offer you restored balance and as we return to the balance which nature intended we are restored to our personal best.

I encourage you to give me a call for your own Reiki session. Then you will have the opportunity to explain to me just how the experienced has offered benefit to you.

Namaste,

Sandy

Reiki for Self-Care

Friday, June 25th, 2010

What do you do to take care of yourself? You may exercise, eat right, meditate or a variety of other activities which offers relaxation and the opportunity to ‘unwind’.¬¨‚Ć May I suggest that you consider adding Reiki to your daily practice?

Reiki, defined as Universal Life Energy, is an excellent addition to your daily routine. When I teach Reiki I always encourage my students to give themselves Reiki every day.¬¨‚Ć Reiki is a gentle, hands on healing technique which offers balancing of your life energy. You don’t need any special equipment or tools to do Reiki. Simply your time and intention. It doesn’t get much better than that!

When you give yourself Reiki you learn to become more aware of your own energy, when you are out of balance and the subtle shifts as you come back into balance. Reiki helps you on all levels, the physical, emotional, mental and spiritual. And here’s another wonderful detail, you don’t need to know where the imbalance is or on which level you need to heal. Because Reiki is channeled through you from our Higher Power, it goes where it’s most needed for your highest good.

You may want to spend an hour or more giving yourself Reiki everyday, or you may only spend a few moments with Reiki. What sort of time do you want to give to yourself? It’s all up to you and it’s always going to work for your benefit. Personally, I often give myself Reiki while I relax in the evening, even while I’m watching television or reading a book.

Once you’ve been attuned to Reiki, by taking a Reiki class, you will discover that it’s available to you at any time, simply hold the intention that Reiki flow and the energy flow begins. Ahhh, love that!

As always, I encourage you to take excellent care of yourself. I’d also like to suggest that you consider adding Reiki to your daily routine. It’s a lovely addition and an excellent method of self-care.

Namaste,

Sandy

Reiki Yesterday, Reiki Today, Reiki Tomorrow

Sunday, January 31st, 2010

I’m very grateful to have Reiki in my life.¬¨‚Ć I use Reiki daily; it just seems so natural to me now.

I came to Reiki at the gentle prodding of my son Jeff. As a young man in his early 20’s he tried Reiki primarily to prove to himself that there was nothing to it. He was currently going to school, working a full time job and of course was also an entrepreneur growing his own business as well. In short he was exhausted and extremely stressed. One session with a Reiki practitioner and he was hooked. Before long he was insistent that I give it a try as I had a few issues myself.

Here I am a few short years later. Not only do I give myself Reiki every day, my dog receives Reiki daily as do my loved ones. Sometimes I’m able to offer Reiki to them in person, but most actually receive distance Reiki. I’m grateful to be able to offer Reiki to my clients as well. Of course some come into my office for their Reiki session but others are open to receiving Reiki from a distance. It’s not at all unusual to feel the Reiki begin to flow during my weekly MasterMind, meditation sessions and often during life coaching sessions. When I feel it I simply let the participants know that I feel it flowing and ask their kind permission.

Still I’m reminded on a regular basis that even those closest to me sometimes don’t understand why I’m offering them Reiki. My youngest sister recently asked me why I offer her Reiki, after all she’s not currently sick and told me that she thought Reiki was primarily to heal one if they are in pain or physically ill. I’m so grateful that she asked about Reiki again, even though we have of course had conversations about Reiki often in the past. It gave me the opportunity to explain to her one on one, that while Reiki does of course offer very gentle healing when one is ill, Reiki always supports our best health as Reiki serves to bring us into balance on all levels. I explained that Reiki helps us to release what no longer serves our highest good, while offering us energetic balance on physical, mental, emotional and spiritual levels.

One of the most important points that I strive to make clear to those new to Reiki as well as to those who experience Reiki on a regular basis is that Reiki can do absolutely no harm. I will never, ever suggest to anyone that Reiki is a substitute for medical attention, but rather that Reiki is a wonderful complement. For instance, if I develop a headache when I’m out in the sun for hours, I do a few things all at once. I drink a glass of water, and depending on the severity of the headache I may or may not take an aspirin, but I will most definitely give myself Reiki. My thought is that the headache may be because of dehydration, or it could be a reminder to release stress of some sort. The Reiki will address the cause of the stress and if I’m ready to be in balance again, I will achieve that balance and will feel better.

Will Reiki heal someone of their pain? Perhaps, however it’s very important for me to remember that Reiki is not mine to control. Reiki may well alleviate or eliminate the pain of someone who is on my table, that is often the result. It’s also been my experience that someone I have offered Reiki to may still have pain. My Dad is a prime example. A quadriplegic for 36 years he is often in intense pain. When I visit of course I offer him Reiki. He has told me that after receiving Reiki the pain is eased, but not eliminated. I don’t question the pain that remains but I do offer my gratitude for the relief that he experiences from Reiki. I have no way of knowing how the pain serves him or to what purpose he uses the Reiki, but I trust that the Reiki is bringing him into balance in the way that serves his highest good at the moment.

For now and in the future I will continue to give myself Reiki, I will offer it to family, friends and clients as I know how much better my life is with Reiki. My spiritual faith is stronger, my mind is clearer, my emotional and physical well being all are improved when I give myself Reiki on a regular basis. So, I offer gratitude that I have experienced Reiki in the past, I will most definitely share Reiki today and I’m excited to share Reiki with others tomorrow.

This week I wish you all the blessings that I know Reiki can bring into your life.

Namaste,

Sandy

Retreat – It’s All About You

Sunday, January 24th, 2010

I am silly excited about the retreat that is coming up. From Friday, February 5th – Sunday, February 7th. Ladies, you are invited to participate.

This weekend is really dedicated to you. An opportunity to relax and put the focus on what you want and need. This retreat will be held at Shalom House, located in the lovely Kettle Moraine area. Spending time with other women, you will have the opportunity to listen to your heart and to hear what your soul is trying to say to you.

We will offer many opportunities to you, but remember, the choices are all yours. You may experience a personal Reiki session, or PSYCH-K, join in guided meditation or yoga. Supplies will be available to create your own vision board as well and of course every conversation will have a bit of life coaching involved. There are plenty of quiet places to take a nap, enjoy your own thoughts, read a book , write in your journal or even take a walk in the beautiful woods.¬¨‚Ć It’s all up to you.

I am honored to be co-hosting this event with life coach Melissa Heisler. Melissa co-hosted the November retreat with me and it was powerful beyond what either of us could ever have expected.

Please join us,

Sandy Walden
Serenity, Holistic Life Coach and Reiki Master

Melissa Heisler
It’s My Life. Personal and Business Coach