May 2011 Newsletter

May 2011 Events

This month we are hosting the following events - (click on the green wording for more detailed information on related website pages.)

Body Mind Seminar on "The Sacred Art of the Doula" Monday May 9
Free Body Mind Science Introductory Talk Monday May 23
Autumn Body Mind Retreat May 28 & 29

Please feel free to contact us if you wish to enquire or book in for any of the above events. Please note it is necessary to RSVP to our talk and seminar as numbers may be limited.

Social Networking

May is upon us already and the Energetics Institute is reaching out into the world of social media. As from now we have started a blogging presence where we can raise and respond to issues in a more timely format than via relying solely on a monthly newsletter.  We have linked our Facebook, Twitter and Blogging presences via the iconic “buttons” you will now see on our Energetics Institute website header, email footers etc.  Bookmark us and join in on the discussions and opinions I will be promoting via these outlets.

The Sacred Art of the Doula

As readers will have already noticed in our seminars and in this newsletter, the time of pregnancy and birth is a critical foundational process for the later physical, mental and emotional health and well-being of both the child and mother. Pregnancy and birth are important rites of passage for the mother, father and child, and require ongoing support for that journey to be a safe and joyous one.

Unfortunately in our society many families are splintered and inter-generational support is not available. In traditional societies the old wise “crone”, and the women of the extended family, gathered protectively around the pregnant mother, and made preparations, gave advice and support, and participated in this sacred process of ushering in new life.

For many women today such an idea and experience is not possible. Many women work up until the 7th month of pregnancy, have little external support and other family members are too busy in their own lives to be able to make a commitment to engage meaningfully with them. Society has mechanised the birth process to be a cold affair that until recently was shown to create disruption to the attachment bonding process between mother and child.

Many men struggle with what is their role during this time and some have negative feelings and insecurities about their fitness to be fathers, about their displaced role of focus within their relationship, and factually about what is going on, and what they need to be doing in amongst all this as a competent partner and future father figure. Men have traditionally retreated and withdrawn in many ways in the face of the poor role modelling they themselves were given by their fathers a generation before as to how to be around a pregnant wife.

For all these and other reasons the vacuum of such support has been filled in recent years by the emergence of the role of the Doula. The word Doula comes from Greek and means "mothering the mother" or "woman's personal servant".

Doulas bring the sacredness and support back into the pregnancy and birthing process for both mother and father. They demystify the journey and educate both parents in what to expect, and at the time of actual birth are present and support the mother with the archetypal energy and wisdom of the “crone” that only another woman can enact.

This is “women’s business” and studies have shown how the role and presence of the Doula leads to positive birth experiences, better post-natal outcomes as measured both within the bodily health and stress measures of the mother, father and baby. The use of a Doula has been shown to allow the supported mother to then bond and attach with the baby in a secure fashion due to their own felt sense of being supported and nurtured.

With this in mind the Energetics Institute is proud to be hosting as our monthly seminar for May, Sally McKay who is a qualified Doula, and who will be speaking on The Sacred Art of the Doula. Prospective parents should attend this important seminar and consider the benefits of engaging the services of a Doula birthing assistant.

Beware the Winter Blues

Winter will soon be upon us in Australia and it is timely that we remind everyone of some recent discoveries concerning Depression and its onset in the winter months.  In the Northern hemisphere winter brings with it a known condition called Seasonal Adjustment Disorder (SAD), which is related to Depression.

Basically the cold and dark environments have the effect of inducing depressive symptoms in some people.  There is a link here between our Pineal gland and how it is affected by sunlight and darkness. The Pineal gland is responsible for regulating and signalling the production of many of our hormones in the body. Some of these hormones create a depressive effect when out of balance and the winter conditions of longer darkness and less sunlight can affect hormone production for some people in this way.

In the Southern hemisphere this SAD disorder is less spoken about or attributed to depressive symptoms in winter but basically it affects some in the same way as it does in the Northern hemisphere. We are recommended to ensure that during winter we have access to strong artificial lighting during the day, or go outside in the winter sun and get exposed to the sunlight when its there.

At the same time a new study by Deakin University has established a link between the intake of salty and sugary foods and the creation of depressive effects. The study found that poor diet was strongly linked to the onset of Depression. Studies in the northern hemisphere found that the disruption in winter of hormone production can in the SAD disorder also lead to cravings for sugar and salty foods in some during winter. This will create the risk of deepening any existing or developing Depression from SAD or other causes.

In a different study it has now been shown that for those on Anti-Depressant medications, there may be interference when the person taking these medications is also taking some painkillers. This whole issue is difficult to identify upfront as Drug companies only need to test their new drugs in isolation and do have a primary obligation to test its efficacy or impact when taken in a cocktail of other medications.

There is a class of medicine known as Iatrogenic outcome where the prescribed course of medicine or therapy creates a negative side effect or new problem or issue. A study reported by New York’s Rockefeller University found that the Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors(SSRI) class of Anti-depressants lost much of their effect when the person was also taking common painkillers such as paracetamol, aspirin and ibuprofen. This iatrogenic effect is likely to be worse in winter when many people take such painkillers for common colds, flus, and sinus based migraine symptoms.

The Rockefeller Institute reported that non SSRI anti-depressants did not have this side effect when used alongside such pain killers. For all these and other reasons it is important that people prone to depressive symptoms take more care in winter to ensure adequate diet, exercise, exposure to the outdoors and the sun are maintained. The very act of isolation inside a house in the winter months can affect some people in a negative way such that they experience mild depressive symptoms, so make sure you get out and about and maintain social networks and outings.

Come and do our Autumn Retreat

One way to further your journey along your healing path is to do some group oriented work. Group work offers some energetic and psychological dynamics not usually present in the traditional one-on-one settings of therapy.  The presence of a group has the effect of deepening the process of the individual clients.  A weekend retreat is being offered in Perth, Western Australia on the weekend of May 28 and 29.

The Age of Narcissism

In the press we are starting to see many more commentators start to use the term “The Age of Narcissism” to describe the increasingly widespread attitudes and behaviours of grandiosity, exhibitionism and entitlement that are promoted as desirable and acceptable now within society. Apart from identifying these 3 key traits of narcissism as evidence of this way of being, little serious commentary tends to be made about this fascinating personality type.

As a researcher and writer about the human condition and about personality types I find narcissism interesting due to its current relevance and due to individuals of this type I come across in business and organisational coaching, and the victims of such persons in my private therapy practice. What has made this topic even more fascinating recently was that I came across a 2000 year old prophecy concerning a future age of Narcissism. The term narcissism was not directly used but the description of the personage of this future age was so bluntly and completely stated as to a reasonable person could only ascribe the prophecy to the narcissistic personality.

In line with the current relevancy of this topic in today’s society, and given the incredible nature of the prophecy I have written a new article outlining and explaining the background of both the prophecy and the nature of Narcissism itself. Have a read of Narcissism as Prophecy article as the prophecy paints a surprisingly accurate depiction of the narcissistic individual that surpasses numerous current writings and observations on the topic.

Feel free to contact us if you would like to know more about our upcoming events etc.

Have a great month!!

Kind Regards,

Richard Boyd

Director, Energetics Institute

Psychotherapy & Counselling

Private Therapy