Changing Karma and becoming Authentic as a Therapist

Coming home to me
Remember I said last time I’ve been practising Buddhism all these years, overcoming all kinds of challenges and impasses?  Well, while I’ve been busily teaching my unique personal lessons in psychotherapy and hypnotherapy, there’s been one massive area of my life I’ve overlooked.  And that is my own buddhist journey over nearly 30 years.
I’m almost embarrassed to write to you to admit this.  The one thing that I’ve used that has kept me centred, like my own personal tiller, has been my daily practice of ‘coming home’ to me. 
Transforming life’s inevitable pain into valuable lessons
I’ve learned over the years how to take the pain of my challenges right into my heart, feel them, live them, then transform them into useable lessons for myself and others.  Let me just give you one example.
About a year after moving into my little house in Dunmow, I made a determination one new year to become ‘absolutely happy’.  Now that isn’t a naive aspiration.  In buddhism, being ‘absolutely happy’ does not mean I’ll never have any challenges again.  It just means I’ll have faith deep enough to know I can deal with all things and produce a positive outcome for myself and others.  So I chanted to be absolutely happy.
What is real Happiness?
As I did, all the things that were creating unhappiness came into sharp focus. There were lots of things that needed to change.  I felt burdened by my relationship, though I couldn’t say that anything was particularly wrong, except I wasn’t happy.  I felt burdened by my work and home not being all in one place anymore which was a complication I could have done without being alone with my 10 year old daughter.  These were just a few of the superficial effects of me not trusting that I could really take control of my life and make it as I wanted it.  So I sat with the discomfort of realising that taking charge of my life meant then I had to address certain elements that were not working for me.  I went into a period of quiet and reflective meditation.  If I had no blocks to being truly me, what would my life look like?  It was scary, depressing, and slightly exciting to imagine.  But I worked and waded through it and by the August everything had dramatically changed.
And that is also the process I’ve come through this summer.  There had to be another way to fully express me to the people I really wanted to attract to me.  And I realised that my authenticity in my marketing message had to be absolutely central.  No more sound bites from other people offering their latest marketing initiative.  It had to be about me showing you who I really am: scary, depressing and becoming more exciting by the minute!
How can you benefit? And how can you pass these lessons onto your clients?
The response to last week’s emails and blogs has been absolutely phenomenal.  I’ve had people contact me I’ve not seen for years, people subscribe to the courses weeks in advance, people leave testimonials, and more and more interest about my work now than ever before!  Thank you. Last Friday at my Dunmow Soul Group meeting I taught directly a process I use every time I arrive at another layer I need to peel off to being authentically me.  It was liberating to show them the process and to see how much they got from it.  And they can use that directly with their clients this week.
If you’re ready to get underneath your next layer of awareness and learn how to transmit your learning to your clients, then please join me.
Changing Karma is our challenge to being authentic
Tomorrow (19th September) at 3pm BST I’ll be talking about How we change our Karma, even, what Karma is, and how that brings us to our own authenticity.  It’s broadly the theme we’ll be working with on both of my autumn Discovery Days on 28th September and 2nd November (book yourself in on at  Becoming truly you and attracting to you the good fortune you really deserve is our focus.  I’ll share with you tomorrow, the lessons I’ve learned over many years of buddhist practice about peeling off the layers and revealing more and more of your authentic selves. And as you reveal your humanity then you will reach your clients at an energetic level that is in itself, transformative. 
The dial in details are:

From the UK: 0844 473 0533 –  PIN 118972
If you’re dialling from abroad or from skype, leave me a comment below and I may
be able to give you a local number to dial in from.
And go to my video blog to hear a bit more about it.
Thanks again.  Look forward to having you on the call tomorrow.  Make sure you put it in your diaries and join me just a couple of minutes before we start to make sure you get to listen to all of it.
To read more about the Discovery Days go to

How I did my personal development this summer


Sharing our mission and purpose as a therapist
One of my biggest lessons this summer has been to realise what really motivates me, and I can tell you, it is simply not money.  My business coach was floored when I said I couldn’t work with a money target in mind.  What else, then, was there to aim for?
So as you probably know if you’ve seen my latest video blog , I set about asking myself ‘why’: if not for money then why was I doing all this?  I got my answer which I explain below, but it didn’t fit neatly into all those sound bites that you hear on the internet, “a mouse click away from $1000”, or “simple changes to your site can double your income” – and one comment in particular that resonated in my head over and over came from one of these books on ‘getting rich quick’ that I’d tried to wade through earlier in the year.  I read that those people who say that they’re not motivated by money are people who haven’t got any to shout about!  Well, they’re right there!  And for a while, I let a fear nestle inside me that this particular commentator had ‘seen straight through me’.  Was I just making excuses to myself? 
What really motivates most therapists?

It’s an interesting thought that in the therapy industry in particular, money is generally not a huge motivator to working.  Of course, we all want to earn a living, and in particular, not have to worry about whether we’ll have clients next month or not, but money generally speaking, is a welcome and if not even, an essential by-product of our expertise but not our primary motivator.

According to Daniel Pink, author of ‘Drive’, the trend of current investigations into what motivates people to work, demonstrates that people in our industry, in particular, are more likely to have an intrinsic motivation to wanting to work that is based upon our personal values and ethics, our sense of mission, and our desire to live out our life’s purpose

Valuing our own journey
Which is where my own realisation has been leading me. Through all the courses and all my activities to educate and support my fellow therapists over the years, I’d struggled inherently with my own self worth and, at times, how that equated with money.  The fact that when students arrived and had a phenomenal learning experience and then went on to demand more from me never seemed to really translate into my own inner peace with what I was teaching.  I really have felt in so many ways, that everything I have taught has been taught before, (was therefore not original or ‘valuable’) and, unless I made it extra special, I was in danger of just regurgitating other people’s ‘stuff’.  This deeper fear has caused me to put my heart and soul into my work to make sure that students and colleagues get a first class training, supervision or learning experience.  And the majority have given absolutely amazing feedback. And yet, really coming out and teaching my own personal lessons in life has been a huge block: How could my experiences and my personal processes be valuable?  And yet, it was largely only the element of personal experiences, perspective and processes that I shared through my courses that made the lessons valuable.  It was a paradox I was just too close to, to be able to tease apart the essential lesson from.
Becoming authentic needs self acceptance
So where does that lead me now? Though my integrity in my courses and classes is evident regardless of its content, I saw this summer, that I’ve even more to teach that I didn’t realise.  It HAS all been taught by other people before.  That is almost an inescapable truth.  But now I feel I’m sharing my deeper experience of transformation and growth that, to some of you, will be absolutely vital to where you are now on your journey to becoming authentic.  As it’s my personal growth experience I want to share, I’ve decided to accept exactly where I am and how I got here, precisely so that I can share the milestones in my journey with you.   In sharing my journey, in allowing you to see my vulnerability, I’m realising what is of real worth and value is our common humanity and how we can support each other to more and more awakening and authenticity, not just for our clients, though that’s an important and significant by-product, but because we must walk our talk and learn too to find the self acceptance, peace of mind and a sense of belonging that we encourage our clients to live.  And I would love to be part of the next stage in your journey.

Please join me on 28th September or 2nd November for one of my Discovery Days fortherapists, counsellors, hypnotherapists, psychologists and psychiatrists ondeveloping your authenticity as a therapist and we will explore our own hearts, minds and souls.  Most of what you learn you will be able to translate to your client/patient work so bring your sense of adventure with you and your Open Mind so you can absorb as much as possible from the day to pass on.  I have some exercises I have quietly developed as an adjunct to my Buddhist practice that I realise I use all the time to get me past my blocks, and I’ve been using them big time this summer.  I’ll also share with you how this very process can turn around even physical issues as it did with me last autumn.  I’ll also be sharing the wise words of some extremely enlightened authors whose insightful books promote and encourage healing at much deeper levels.

If you’re a Soul Member, this course is included in your subscription.  In other words, you pay nothing extra for the course.  You decide if you want to learn, assist or even co present.  I’m happy to discuss that with you.

If you’re one of the first few to subscribe, then you may be in time to get one of the 4 places for only £37.  The rest to 12 are at £57.  Heart and Soul members can sign up for £37.  Just email me and let me know.

Looking forward to working with a great group of people.  Details and booking are all on


Authentically me?

I’ve been quietly reflecting in my little house in Essex bemoaning the fact that I haven’t yet delivered the goods for my business coach, that I haven’t yet got on top of all that really needs to be done to expand the business and all the while, I have ringing in my ears, words from my closest followers saying:

“Jenny, you really should be more successful than you are!”.

What actually does that mean? What does it mean to be successful? This is what I’ve been in a practically meditative state for the last 6 weeks about and slowly the inner story is unravelling.

And allow me a diversion: it was all summarised in a phone call I had with one of my Soul Group Members who, when I said I really wasn’t a vegetarian, laughed and retorted wryly: “To be honest, when I saw you tucking into a ham salad at Group the other week, I thought to myself, ‘isn’t Jenny a vegetarian?’ We laughed and I quizzed why the hell everyone I damn well meet thinks I must be a vegetarian! I just didn’t and really, to be honest, still don’t understand how I project that kind of energy. All I know is that I do. Mix that with another ‘accusation’ that often comes my way: “Jenny, you are very spirtiual.” and here we have my conundrum.

How can I be successful at anything, if something that is essential to who I am, the very energy I give out, I’m not appreciating or using? And I realise as a result of this that I’ve been living certain aspects of my business from the outside in: let me explain.

When I went into business around 11 years ago, I’d had an epiphany towards the end of my training which meant I lost my fear of almost everything and just went at my new business with a level of faith that all would be fine.  I could see into the lives of my clients with a penetrating clarity, I could see them underneath all the rubbish they believed about themselves, and I worked heart felt to show them who they really were.  The only reason I could do this was because I’d seen and perceived myself underneath everything I used to think I was, and realised I was just human and nothing extraordinary – certainly not the ugly or fraudulent person that many of us think we are.  However, what I didn’t realise was that the ability to see that clearly, was indeed extraordinary.  While the initial epiphany created an almost zen like inner calm, after a few years, it established itself as just my base level of insight.  I didn’t have to work at it.  It just was how I had become.

It sounds as I write, like it was created by some meditative or spiritual state from which I emerged renewed.  But in fact, it came from some of my life’s greatest sufferings and torments.  I was sick of the way I was.  I was sick of the complaint, the helplessness, the sadness and the anger and I decided I would do what it took to change the way I perceived myself and my environment.  As I was ready for the change, the opportunity for change materialised in my environment.  It was a simple future progression, conducted by an inexperienced therapist on my second year of training that gave me that opportunity.  To this day, she probably doesn’t realise that that was the start of a new me.

I saw myself in that session in a future life completely calm and composed.  From that perspective, everything I used to feel just seemed small and ridiculous and I really had no need to keep reliving those dramas every day.  The insight profoundly changed the way I felt about people, my family, my work and my life.  From my future perspective, I realised I already had the capacity within me to see clearly and to not be tarnished by the living ghosts of my past, which I could now simply drop.  There was a deep sense of sadness at how I hadn’t honoured myself properly in the past, and a determination to stay absolutely central to my life and my life’s purpose.  In Buddhism we call this insight ‘zange’ which loosely translates as an ‘apology’. I was still aware of my programming: I could see it, like a film and yet still profoundly appreciate the deeper aspect of who I was.

These are my gifts.  These are things I am really good at.  However, despite that fact, I was still aware that my work would be better valued and validated by doctors, psychiatrists and the world of psychotherapy, if I didn’t advertise the whole ‘spiritual’ or ‘experiential’ nature of my work.  While I use the term ‘spiritual’ at times, I’m always careful to define it so that I don’t attract the new age, spiritual movement which can often, leave me feeling quite cold, especially when I meet people who I can sense are living from the outside in.  By that I mean people who use jargon that demonstrates they belong to that club, but not really understanding what those terms really mean to them, let alone what they mean to others.  I’m also a vehement anti buddhist jargonist, much to my fellow buddhists’ dismay at times, as I find real meaning gets lost in words and concepts that are way too high brow, learned or ‘out there’ to be relevant ‘in here’.

Spirituality for me, I have learned is really quite mundane. It’s all about just knowing and feeling life without interpreting it through other people’s words or other people’s conceptual filters.  It’s about being authentic and living in the here and now and having a curiosity and love for life that makes each day a beautiful new awakening.  And yet, here am I, anxious about being that whole person among my larger peer group.  Worried about not fitting in, or not being taken seriously…..the origin of which stems back to the unique circumstances of my childhood, my family and the mores of our culture.  Something is rotten in the state of Denmark, methinks!

So this is where I realised slowly over the last 6 weeks, I’ve been living from the outside in when it comes to my business.  And that’s because I need to confront my fear of being fully known for who I really am.  My intimates, some of my treasured colleagues and supervisees, get the full picture.  But when it comes to being me out there, I’ve been hiding.

As I’m writing I’m feeling a clarity I haven’t felt for some time.  I’m feeling a certainty at my core that this is what I need to do now.  You’ll hear more about my journey and how I’ve come to use my unique personal experience in my therapy career: my goal being to show you how to realise the value of YOUR experiences and how to value you.  The strap line on my site says, ‘Realising your true value’.  That’s what I promised to do when I set out in this training and supervision business.  And it’s something I want to share with you.


Do you have an Open Mind?

Open Mind – Supporting and Developing your Hypnotherapy practice
hypnotherapy trainingIf you’ve ever wondered how you might get to see more than half a dozen or a dozen clients a week without doing tons of prep and loads of writing up after, you may find my proposition at the Open Mind useful.  Coming to a group meeting and experiencing what’s on offer in terms of personal and professional development, career progression and professional support and supervision is your first step towards learning how to work more intuitively and creatively.  And what’s more, the first time you meet with us there is no charge.  The reason for that?  I know that many part with money up front and then are sorely disappointed by the training experience they receive, while others thought it was great.  How can the same course elicit such opposite experiences?  The truth is, I guess, people are all different and of course, not everything you see marketed and advertised lives up to its promise.  So I simply want you to come and try us out with no obligation.  If you like how we work and you fit in with us, then you are welcome to subscribe and join with our growing number of Open Mind Therapists who are Hypnotherapists with a difference. 
If you feel you fit in to one of these categories, you may find one of our groups beneficial:
  1. Fresh in practice and still finding your feet
  2. In practice a year or 2 and still not feeling settled nor busy enough to make a living
  3. In practice perhaps many years but unable to find a truly integrative or eclectic supervisor who can advise on the diverse range of clients you see.
One of my trainees turned supervisee commented that he’d come to train with me in my CPD course in ME/CFS to specialise because he found the prep for all the different cases he was managing far too time consuming.  He wanted a predictable type of client that he could offer a strict protocol to.  He was surprised when I said I have none.  What he learned instead was how to be intuitive, use his existing knowledge much more creatively, and to take the anticipation out of meeting clients.  When he joined my supervision/career development groups he received 6 weekly support, advice, personal development and career progression that supported his practice and turned him into a full time integrative hypnotherapist with a waiting list…even through the recession.  And the secret?  He learned how to read his client and be far more flexible and intuitive in his approach.  The benefits of this of course are a deeper confidence, less prep, and more clients!
If you’re wanting to add skills, gain a holistic view of your clients issues, treat according to their needs, to feel more confident and to find your feet in your practice, then our groups could be a great springboard for you to learn how to do just that.
Join me on 23rd March or our next meeting on 4th May at The Millfield Arts Centre, Edmonton North London.  Or alternatively, on 30th March or 18th May in Saracen’s Head Hotel, Great Dunmow from 10 till 2:30pm.  To register with us and to find out more go to
Jenny is a fellow and an accredited trainer and supervisor for the National Council of Psychotherapists, a member of the BACP and a supervisor for the Hypnotherapy Association.  She has been offering integrative training and supervision to hypnotherapists for around 8 of her 11 years as a practising therapist bringing with her her former teaching experience and her 30 years of buddhist practice.  Committed to therapist personal and professional development, Jenny has been running the The Open Mind website for just over a year and is attracting a growing number of hypno and psychotherapists who want to learn to work more intuitively and integratively

I’ve been galivanting about!

The bedraggled of Winterburn, Gargrave

I’ve been in lots of different places in the last fortnight starting with my first London Soul Group meeting on 10th February which was a great success and I’m so looking forward to developing this group more.  Our next meeting is on 23rd March and for more information just go straight to the home page. That was rapidly followed by a holiday in the Yorkshire Dales at the tale end of the snows! There we are, our motley collection of a family! Having spent the week laughing till my sides were splitting, I was then left in the City of my youth, Liverpool to visit some long lost friends and my good friend Tony Cawley who’s also done a teleseminar with me.  The reason I stayed ‘up North’ while my family travelled back was to attend the first meeting as a fellow of the National Council of Psychotherapists under their new leadership, Ray Freeman.

Ray is an ex college lecturer as well as therapist and understands the importance of educational qualifications as delivered by schools, colleges and universities as well as our professional training which is largely delivered by those of us already in the field.  Ray has pulled together a team of people who  understand the importance of business as well as the importance of education and together we are looking into the future to be  one of the first professional organisations in the hypno-psychotherapy world who will be using external validators such as the government regulators, OfQual, to lend academic as well as experiential cudos to our qualifications.  Now I’m not one for jumping through hoops and compromising on quality of experience for bits of paper that may mean nothing…..but then, so far, it looks like none of my compatriot Fellows of the NCP are either, which can only bode well.  We are keen to be seen as the leading organisation in our field with standards that we can uphold and an integrity of training that our accredited member schools can deliver, and with qualifications that can contribute to further academic education or indeed constitute an academic award in themselves.  That is exciting in itself and I will be taking an active part in developing our integrity of service.  I’ll talk another time about levels of membership and which level of membership may suit you or how you might qualify for membership.  In the meantime, watch this space.

And just this morning, I’ve delivered, for the second time around, my ‘Journey of a lifetime’ presentation to my fellow business networkers in Enfield, North London which tracks my 30 years as a buddhist and the 3 biggest turning points in my life.  If you’re a 4networking aficionado, join me in St Alban’s this Thursday where I will be delivering it again.  The feedback this time was that  people felt calm at the end of the talk, inspired, and uplifted.  Many can identify with my struggles of course, which is a great leveller when operating in the business world where we may feel that how we appear is more important than who we are.  But at the end of the day, we tend to make all sorts of decisions about our careers and lifestyles on an emotional level which will of course, mean we need to sense a person’s integrity in their business endeavours. 

To all fellow therapists who have landed on this post,  who are still struggling with their own sense of integrity in their business, please get in touch.  I can help you develop your career, provide guidance and inspiration and  make your initial training, which may have cost many hundreds if not thousands of pounds, more valuable to you than you realised.  Either sign up for my free membership level or come along  to my next North London hypnotherapist and psychotherapist supervision and career development meeting on 23rd March. Or email me.



Are you cut out to be a therapist?

What made you go into therapy?  Were you thinking ‘how else can I earn money’?  Did you fancy doing something different?  Did you have a passion for healing?  Did you fancy just working for yourself? Or was it just the toss of a coin that decided you?

Was your career choice made by flipping a coin?

It may come as no surprise that many people are quite confused about what they are in the therapy world for.  On the one hand they want to heal people, on the other they want to earn money.  And often those two instincts appear to be almost diametrically at odds with each other.  Therapists may spend several years trying to run a business that is, quite honestly, unprofitable but something stops them asking for more money or more clients.

Why is that?  This is what I’ve seen.  I often realise on talking to colleagues new to the Open Mind way that a lot of our desire to heal others, is also to put right the wrongs of our own histories.  On some level or another, often quite unconscious – despite the fact we are trained to access the subconscious minds of our clients – therapists are still striving to find equilibrium in themselves and to quieten their aching souls.  Several supervisees have mentioned to me over the years that they feel like a fraud when they work with clients whose ‘stuff’ so closely resonates with their own.  And these therapists are the lucky ones.  They recognise the source of their own performance anxiety.  Many have yet to get there.

Our healing comes, as we teach others how to heal themselves.  Put another way, in order to help others out of their psychic impasses in their lives, we have to do it ourselves first.  If therapists aren’t prepared to acknowledge that their own personal development is probably the most important investment they’ll ever make into their therapy practice, then I sometimes wonder what is the point trying to advertise and raise your reputation and profile.  It becomes the paper tiger approach to therap-ing.  The outside in approach.  The ‘I-can-see-the-lights-are-on-but-there’s-no-one-at-home’ syndrome.

Some people call me or write to me to ask me what I can offer them, or why I might be different to anyone else.  Some just call because they’ve seen my site and want to know a bit more about how I can help them in their practices.  However, it seems to me that if a hypnotherapist isn’t prepared to look inside themselves to heal their own inner reality, then all the techniques or strategies in the world are rendered pretty ineffectual.  So what do I offer?  The opportunity to relate on a deeply human level.  Supported by my Buddhist practice of nearly 30 years, the ethos of Open Mind is to reach into our own hearts and minds to heal and transform our reality.  If we can do it for ourselves, then we know it is possible for others to do it too.  It’s only when we’ve not yet done it for ourselves, do we suffer these performance anxieties that send us scampering to our colleagues to find safety in numbers.

Using our supervision and mentorship groups as a base to ‘come home to’ many of our Open Mind therapists are finding a deeper inner confidence and are learning to trust their own instincts and intuition.  If you would like to join a group of us our next one will be on 15th June in the Millfield Arts Centre in Edmonton, North London.  You can register for it on the home page.  Meanwhile, give me a call on 07773 919071 or send me an email and tell me what it is in your practice you are looking for.  If I hear what your particular unique issue is, then I’ll be able to better advise you on the route to take to improve your sense of wellbeing, your client numbers, and your profitability.


Our personal journey as therapists

Generally speaking people learn when they DO something: here’s the age-old saying oft quoted in teacher staff rooms

Tell me and I’ll forget
Show me and I may remember
Involve me and I’ll understand

When it comes to working as a therapist, we need to have been involved deeply in our own journey as healers, healing and healed to be able to understand the twists and turns in the journey we ask our clients to make. This is where our performance anxiety truly stems from: on a deeper level we sense in ourselves the same kinds of anxieties our clients have. How can I heal my client if I haven’t healed myself? This is the question that many hypnotherapists, psychotherapists, and coaches wrestle with in their practices.

We may have listened to our lectures, we may have witnessed a few demonstrations, but until we have embarked on the whole journey ourselves, we may come over as inauthentic and lacking in skill and personal confidence. That may also mean, we have to face our fear of exposure in our classes, our teaching and learning groups, and our general lives. If I can’t find my inner peace in amongst the ‘noise and haste’ of my every day life, how can I rely upon my inner self to guide me when I really need it?

Many sit back and DO nothing about their fears. They continue to blame seemingly external causes for their inner turmoil or lack of success. But the truth is, there is only one cause of inner turmoil, and that is not having the courage to take our own personal inventory.

As shiny and superficial as the world may appear at times with its hedonistic emphasis on outward appearances, there is a simultaneous undercurrent of a movement which is looking for the deeply authentic, the real, the meaningful. It’s almost as if, as a society, we need the authentic the more emphasis is placed on the superficial and frivolous. A bit like the spiritual equivalent of ‘supersize v superskinny’: a spiritual famine or feast.

Training with me at Open Mind means we look for the authentic. We are searching for the unique gift that each therapist or coach brings to their practice: their personality, their style, and their experience. There is no prescriptive way to practice working in the healing arts: each one of us is individual. And if you are looking to find more about who you are in your practice, think about joining us on my Soul level membership. Take a look.


Saint FM – Local Radio talk on Grief

It was 2 Sundays ago now that I was invited to talk on Nigel Waymark’s Sunday Brunch show on Saint FM about grief and grieving.  Though the subject matter was rather intense, it was curiously very enjoyable.  Nigel has a genuine curiosity about the process of grieving as he checks what I’m saying against his own experience of grief which makes for a very authentic interview.  It was a sheer pleasure to appear on his show and I’m looking forward to many future dates.  I have a whole bunch of subjects I have offered to talk about so I wonder if you might like to tell me which ones you’d like to hear by leaving a comment in the comment box below.  In the meantime, if you want to listen to the show click on the link below.

Suggested topics:

  • Relationships: good ones, ones gone bad – how to take responsibility in relationships
  • Marriage breakdown: how to navigate the pitfalls of divorce and separation maturely!
  • The myth of chemical imbalance in the mind: what is depression? Do anti depressants work?
  • How natural is it to hear voices?
  • Is ME or Chronic Fatigue Syndrome really all in the mind?
  • How to choose a therapist: A discussion of the pitfalls of finding the right therapist.
  • Insomnia: what is it caused by? How can we resolve it?
  • Anxiety and phobia: What are they? How can we resolve them?




The Therapists Guide to Internet Marketing

Being a therapist you may not be so savvy at running your business or marketing yourself.  I started out on the long old road to find my way round the internet around 3 years. It was, and perhaps still is, a fairly incongruous thing for therapists to get themselves involved in, that is unless they have a background in something technical and complicated!

I subscribed to a bunch of online marketing newsletters, listened to some of the greats in online marketing such as Alex Mandossian and Frank Kern, not to mention John Reece and waded through the painful process of:

  • getting articles written with the right number of keywords in with titles that meant something:
  • putting back links up to my site so that I could be found on google:
  • getting myself going on social media – a work still in progres:
  • getting my copy right on my website:
  • getting a newsletter up and running with interesting and inspiring content

The list was endless and took hours and hours of research, learning by trial and error.

It was so endless that I longed for someone to be able to share this arduous task with, someone who I was prepared to pay to help, as long as they knew what I knew and more and could take some of the toil out of me wearing just too many hats in my therapy practice.

I met that man through 4n. Robert Keating. This guy’s been working on internet marketing for around 4 years making it his job to be one step ahead of the competition. He is a gem of a find and despite 2 years of hard networking, I hadn’t met anyone I could trust with my business.

Now Rob is my right hand man. He knows what the internet is doing. He takes some of the legwork out of my online marketing and helps in so many constructive ways. I feel like I have a team in him. In fact, just so that other therapists, who may be as clueless as I once was can benefit too, we’ve devised a teleseminar that went out Wednesday evening.   However so you get every opportunity to learn from Rob, we’ve made it available as an audio download!  So go to  and get your copy now.


The ME/CFS debate rages on

You may have caught the media interest surrounding the militantism of some of the ME community’s spokespeople over the last few months.  It started with an article in the BMJ which decried the use of violent threats and insults to medical and psychiatric researchers who are attempting to find answers to the mystery disease which is ME/CFS – Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.  The much maligned Professor Wessely, a main contender in the psychiatric corner of the ME/CFS debate, has been repeatedly villified and demonised: you do not have to search far across the internet to discover just how despised this man is among some sectors of the ME/CFS community.  And even in the BMJ, he cites a section from a hate mail to him as follows: “I hope that you die and your death wil come soon.  I’ll follow your casket on a pale afternoon and what while you’re lowered unto your deathbed and stand over your grave till I am sure that your dead” – which, from my own humble experiences of some of the messages from a few choice unsubscribes from my list, doesn’t exactly inspire you to keep going back for more!
 The Microscopic XMRV Virus
However, of equal objection according to this militant part of the ME/CFS mouthpiece, is the research into purely medical avenues which would seem a proverbial shot in its own foot.  Research that has sought to replicate the breakthroughs with the retrovirus that indicated in its initial research that 68 out of 101 sufferers had been infected, failed.  The fallout of this kind of finding provides a feeding ground for those that are still on a mission to derail even the merest suggestion that this condition is not physical.  And sadly, Professor Wessely’s understandable but perhaps more retaliatory than reasoned response is that this segment of the ME/CFS fraternity “have personality problems. They are damaged and disturbed with an obsession about psychiatry.” (BMJ vol 342 p 1395)
So disillusioned and intimidated are some researchers that they claim to have been chased out of their chosen research field to take up posts in lesser controversial areas of medical research, one even claiming he felt safer now working in Iraq and Afghanistan!
The debate overflowed into the broadsheet newspapers a couple of weeks later to which came some very sensitive letters from sufferers of ME/CFS who have found this whole militancy rather distasteful and in fact, disgraceful.   I wonder what sends one small section of a community into melt down in this way?  Does suggesting they have a personality disorder help the ME/CFS cause?
This bipolar approach to ME/CFS is so poignantly indicative of the either/or debate that rages through modern medicine.  We’re on a high one moment that there is a medical breakthrough in this field, and then a low the next when evidence cannot be replicated.  We are on a high when practitioners of the mind element of this condition report phenomenal success and then on a low when the successes of that too, cannot be rolled out to all sufferers.
The moral of the story seems to be, that the treatment of illness is an art not a science: that we have all been shoe-horned into believing there is a single traceable cause for each disease that, if we treat with the right magic bullet, will reach the spot.  We have been brainwashed by the tide of popular medical research into believing ‘they’ will find the answers, and thereby have given up our personal responsibility.  We are looking for answers outside of ourselves.  We are looking for someone else to pick up the pieces of our lives for us so that we can carry on living the lives we’ve become accustomed to.  We have become so out of touch with our own hearts, minds and bodies that, we have surrendered to the ‘higher power’ that is the medical profession, and placed a faith in them to fix our ills and woes. And this ethos at times spills over into our world of therapy as clients want us to just ‘fix them’.
The Mind Body Spirit Triad

The Mind Body Spirit Triad

I don’t mean to discredit the huge breakthroughs that have come about through conventional medical research, but I do wish to ask each and every one of us whether we have scratched the surface and looked any deeper than the symptoms.  Because it is my belief that behind most physical disorders there is a spiritual root: not a psychological one that only reduces our being to measurements yet again.  By spiritual I mean our sense of identity, our sense of belonging, not only to a community, but to our family, and indeed to our very selves.  This is where healing takes place.  The awareness of this is what makes a good doctor, a good therapist, a good researcher.  Stripping spiritual meaning from a set of results strips the heart and soul out of the human condition.  I wonder if more funding for PsychoNeuroImmunology Research would help bridge the gap in the either/or debate and lead us to making meaningful sense of the evidence? 

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