February 2011 Newsletter

February 2011 Events

This month we are hosting a number of events.  They are as follows.... (click on the green wording for more detailed information on related website pages)

Free Body Mind Science Introductory Talk Monday February 14
Body Mind Seminar on Attachment Issues from Childhood Monday February 21
Process Group starting Wednesday February 16
Relationships and Intimacy Workshop February 26 and 27

Please feel free to contact us if you wish to book in.  Please note it is necessary to RSVP to our talk and seminar as numbers are limited.

Relationship Patterns have their origins in Early Childhood Development

February is the month of Cupid’s arrow where already cafe’s are advertising special dinners for couples, hotels are spruiking special lovers getaway packages, and so the marketing machine in society gets to churn out another reason why we all should spend more money.  Valentine’s Day can be a painful one for many however.  Single people are reminded they have no partner, and couples who venture out are brought into awareness about the state of their intimacy and relationship as they navigate a few special hours together alone.

Relationships and the search for love preoccupies time and energy for many people.  For many it is a long journey of experiences and self-discovery that may or may not have a happy ending.  For many adults this journey will uncover patterns in terms of the type of people we attract and are attracted to, and in terms of the dynamics that show up in our intimate relationships.  As time goes on we may find that we do not possess the necessary skills to conduct ourselves in a healthy way in our attempted relationships.

We may find that after the euphoric “honeymoon” stage of relationship, which may span 3 to 6 months that “issues” start to arise in our relationships or with our partners.  In many cases we may be in denial but if we are honest we will see that we are the primary basis for the problem, or at least we co-create the troubling issue with our partner.  This is the shadow side of the “dance of intimacy”.

Albert Einstein once said “You cannot solve a problem with the same mind that created it.”  As his quote states, we often have a blind spot to our contributing issues in our relationships, or we try to fix our relationships ourselves by using our wills, or our mind which may contain the distorted belief, conclusion or thinking that perpetuates the problem.

It is far better to seek professional help when we find ourselves in the midst of yet another failed relationship, or in another iteration of a dysfunctional dynamic whilst in a relationship.  We offer both couples and single adults the safe place to explore the dynamics or issues that get in the way of a person having a loving and fulfilling relationship.  This can be done in a one-on-one setting or in a couples counselling setting with your local psychotherapist.

Many couples are surprised to learn that their basis for attraction to adult partners has been shaped by their parents and by their childhood experiences.  In childhood we all must navigate two important phases of childhood development which will have a direct bearing on our future ability to enter and sustain healthy adult intimate relationships.

The first childhood developmental phase is the Attachment phase of babyhood/infancy where the baby learns to attach and develop a social engagement system in their brain based on the mother-to- baby contact dynamics.  For a fuller understanding of this important phase of childhood development and its important neuroscience implications, check out our new article on the Energetics Institute website titled How Early Life Attachment Affects Adult Intimacy and Relationships.

The second phase of childhood development that directly impacts and influences the way in which we will conduct ourselves as adults in adult human relationships is the Narcissistic / Oedipal phase of childhood in the formative ages of about 2 to 5 years.  Taken together they represent key stages of human development that directly shape our adult ability to be able to have healthy intimate relationships.

The consequences of disturbances and trauma in these critical phases of childhood leave the adult with some unconscious effects which one sees noted in much psychological and counselling literature.  The first of these is the idea that we are attracted to people who appear to have qualities we lack or have disowned in ourselves.  This is the idea of falling in love with “opposites” or that “opposites attract”.

The second facet of our human consciousness in relational areas is the concept of how we are unconsciously attracted to people who embody or remind us of qualities good and bad that we saw in our own parents, and especially the parent with whom we have the most “baggage” or unresolved childhood issues.

These issues are important and the effects can be destructive for those affected in their primary love relationships.  For this reason we are running the Relationships and Intimacy Workshop on the weekend of February 26-27 2011, where we fully explain these critical phases of childhood and explore the critical dynamics of adult relationships that negate the ability for love and intimacy to be sustained, or how relationships sometimes become problematic or abusive.  Every committed relationship can benefit from the investment in the time to better understand how we each have been shaped and geared to be in relationship . The workshop is suitable for both people who are currently single, and those who are couples in relationship at present.

Epigenetic Body Mind Implications

If one were to believe some sections of the media, science and medicine, then we would succumb to being victims to our inherited biology in this life.  Many people hold a belief system that one cannot really change, and so use this excuse to not look further than one’s own current condition and state in life.

We now are coming into full awareness of just how much we are either conscious or unconscious participants and creators in our own evolution via our own body-mind linked processes of Epigenetics.  The new science of Epigenetics relates to how at the very heart of every cell in our body, we have mechanisms by which environmental stimulus interacts with our genome and controls genetic activity.

These mechanisms allow our basic inherited genes to be modified when copied or transcribed so that up to 30,000 variations from a single inherited gene sequence may be produced.  The old science of our hardwired genes producing exact copies of themselves as a fixed fate are wrong or discredited facts.  We are not victims to our inheritance at all.

We are in fact responsible for the type of stimulus which our cells take on, make sense of, and react to with a response via using a variation of a basic gene to help us adapt to our perceived reality.  This can take us in either a healthy or an unhealthy direction in terms of our wellness, and it is also occurring in every moment and influenced from both our conscious and unconscious mind signals into our body.

The important consideration here is the way we perceive our environment and ourself as part of our environment then controls our health and fate.  When we live from negative limiting beliefs we actually create the basis for our cells to create stress based variants of our genes.  These variants are now being linked long term to many of the modern day epidemics in society such as cancers, diabetes, obesity, immune system disorders to name a few.

However if we were to change our beliefs, conclusions, and ideas about ourselves and life for the better then again we influence our Epigenetic mechanisms to produce gene variants that foster and sustain wellness.  We also switch off the basis for any disease which was generated and being sustained by the same Epigenetic mechanisms when they were responding from the negative stressed stimulus.

Basic medicine has shown that when our mind perceives that our environment is safe and supportive, our cells are preoccupied with the growth and maintenance of the body. In stressful situations the cells forego their normal growth functions and adopt a defensive “protection” stance where the cells produce defensive proteins, neurotransmitters, and substances.

When this occurs as an event we soon resume normal function with limited negative effect.  When we learn or adopt a reality that this is how life is as a victim, then we create the basis for ongoing production of such defensive posture cellular output in the body.  This simply leads to disease and illness over time, and can become the habitual pattern of a person over time who swaps wellness for a neutral state of “absence of illness”.  Many people now wrongly equate an absence of disease or illness as a healthy state of wellness.   This is a false and compromised view of body mind health. Wellness is far more than a state of absence from disease.

A person can change their mind and their perceptions of themselves and life, and so in turn make a life change where they start to overcome what may be a life lived thus far with compromised health.  Integrative Body Mind Psychotherapy is well placed to facilitate such change.  Studies have shown that being able to take a person from their “fight or flight” or Sympathetic state of the Autonomic Nervous System (ANS), into their equivalent Parasympathetic state or relaxed wellness, is a key factor in changing one’s perceptual bias at the cellular level.

It is also important that a person deal with repressed emotional traumas from the past, as the emotions of a person are a primary perception signaller in the body mind of a person.  Working at an embodied and conscious emotional level where cognitive or mental distortions and false beliefs are made conscious and changed, are the recommended holistic approach to effecting deep and lasting change over time in a person.  This approach creates the basis for positive Epigenetic mechanism realignment in a person.

We work deliberately and systematically with clients in this way to overturn psychosomatic (emotional based) and psychogenic (mental based) bodily illness and dis-ease.  Epigenetic scientists are now stating that a majority of major and lesser chronic recurring illnesses in the body appear to have either a primary or secondary contributing cause of psychosomatic or psychogenic influences.  This makes sense and aligns to Epigenetic science and their documented mechanisms.

Unfortunately some people normalise their victimhood and gain a sense of familiarity with it.  They resist change and they resist taking ownership for their lives, and how they can turn that life around by changing their negative limiting self and life beliefs.  Indeed it is true that as Nelson Mandela said upon release from imprisonment from the apartheid regime in South Africa, that “it is not that we fear we are weak, it is that we fear we are powerful beyond measure”.

Empowerment and wellness are two key goals of Integrative Body Mind Psychotherapy when working with clients.  If you are stuck in victimhood, or dogged with health issues that just bump along the divide between the state of disease or absence of disease, but never lifts into wellness, it is time you looked harder at what reality you have created for yourself, and where that is taking you.

Please feel free to contact us for more information.

Enjoy your month.

Richard Boyd

Director, Energetics Institute

Psychotherapy & Counselling

Private Therapy