The Silent Agony Of Grief

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All of us have, at some time or another, experienced grief. While it’s an emotion we most commonly associate with death, it’s not limited to the loss of a life. We can grieve for friends or family who move far away, for a lost item that had powerful sentimental worth or for an opportunity we should have taken but didn’t.

As children many of us have lost treasured pets or older relatives. And as we get older, death’s footsteps fall closer to our daily lives, claiming friends, parents, siblings and others we cherish.

Grief in all these circumstances is entirely normal. In fact, it’s also entirely healthy. And most of the time it’s transitory, a process with a beginning and an end that we move through on the way to reclaiming emotional equilibrium at some undefined near-future point.

For some of us, though, the sense of loss is so great and so overwhelming that it’s impossible to find what we often describe as ‘closure’ – that point where we can allow ourselves to close the door on the past and concentrate again on today and tomorrow. Often this inability to move beyond grief has strong links to guilt.

Just as chronic grief can manifest itself in all sorts of ways, so different people will find different coping mechanisms for it – a process that often involves compartmentalising the raw emotion and boxing it up out of sight of our conscious self. Our subconscious, though, is adept at opening up those boxes from time to time, sometimes most unexpectedly; and unless we deal with the root cause of the grief, we can never be completely free of it.

Most of us experience grief in a relatively safe environment made up by people who know and love us, understand us and with whom we are comfortable sharing pain. Talking about loss is an integral part of healing because it allows us to articulate how we feel and, more importantly, why we feel the way we do.

Others, though, have to live through their grief in a very public way, never finding the personal space needed to recognise, acknowledge and deal with the pain they feel.

When it comes to grief in the public eye, there can surely be no greater example than the experiences of Prince William and Prince Harry following the death of their mother, Princess Diana, in a car crash as she and her consort, Dodi Fayed, fled paparazzi through a Paris tunnel.

Listening to Prince Harry talking this week about the two years of what he describes as ‘total chaos’ in his late twenties probably did more for raising awareness around grief and its effect than this blog or any newspaper article or interview could ever do.

Admitting to spending the last twenty years not thinking about his mother because ‘why would that help?’ will have resonated strongly with the thousands of people who are still living with grief long after the loss itself occurred.

As he spoke of feeling anger, of succumbing to dark periods where he felt violent tendencies and of struggling to cope with his grief in the public eye, it turned out that Harry, who always seems to have been something of a barometer for normality within the Royal Family, is, well, exactly that: normal.

In a podcast with The Daily Telegraph’s Bryony Gordon Prince Harry talks about how the pent-up grief affected his ability to work, aspects of his personal life and how it was his brother who eventually persuaded him to seek help.

He also describes how talking about grief makes you realise you’re part of a very large club and that it’s okay to feel the way you do. And that’s why hypnotherapy for grief is a really effective way of removing the subconscious blocks that prevent people from coming to an acceptance of their loss and then moving beyond it.

Coincidentally, yesterday we received some wonderful thanks from a mother whose 11-year-old son was not only being bullied at school but was also experiencing acute grief trauma following the sudden loss of his grandad.

In her note to our amazing associate Elaine Hodgins, who treated her son, the mother wrote: “We cannot thank you enough for the help you gave him. He enjoyed seeing you and you made him aware that it’s okay to feel certain ways and that he can control things. We think you are awesome. Much love.”

If you, or someone you know, is suffering from chronic grief please get in touch and see how we can help you come to terms with your feelings and rediscover the happy life you deserve.

Grief may feel like agony, but you really don’t have to – and shouldn’t – suffer it in silence.


All New Things Are Weak & Tender – A Word On Recovery

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All new things are weak and tender. This can include the beginnings of a romantic relationship or friendship, a business partnership, a new creative project, a move to a new location, job or country or even the learning of a new skill. Whenever we make a change it is important to also recognise that even positive changes are often challenging. It takes time, energy and focus to adjust. So in a way we could say all beginnings possess a delicacy that is important to respect.

However the beginnings I am particularly focused on here are the beginnings of recovery; recovery from heartbreak, anxiety, divorce, addiction, trauma, depression, an abusive relationship, chronic illness, grief. Recovery from whatever it is that has pole-axed your soul and left you wondering whether your world will ever be the same again, let alone whether you even want to be a part of it anymore.

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Are You Wasting Your Life Living Other People’s Programs?

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Did you know that we live 95% of our lives led by the beliefs of the subconscious mind, and that 70% of those beliefs are negative? By the time we reach the age of 7, we have downloaded and installed a set of programs and beliefs from our parents that become our software for the entirety of our lives, unless we change them. Our subconscious is the part of our mind that stores our emotions, memories, skills, instincts and behaviours, as well as running biological functions.  If we are trying to change anything in our lives with the conscious mind, and it goes against our previous unconscious conditioning, then we might as well conserve our energy. Basically, to be blunt, those early programs will direct the course of your life, whether you like it or not. The Matrix movie was totally on the game, either we follow the program that has been previously ordained, or we opt out and become a self aware and conscious participant in our destiny. Unless we do, we exist within the matrix of other peoples programs, if they’re not working for in our favour, it is time for some new, and life enhancing downloads.  With the conscious mind we can only hope to achieve limited change, as we rely on willpower, reason, positive thinking and motivation. It is a bit like making those New Year’s resolutions; the determination factor has a short shelf life unless it is aligned with the embedded beliefs held within our subconscious. They affect every area of our life, health, self esteem, relationships, prosperity and deepest spiritual understandings. If those beliefs are self defeating, de-valuing, fearful and create stress, then we are running a negative program that will reflect in our lives, it has to, because anything that is not an accurate reflection of our internal reality will cause our subconscious to disregard it and we will be cut off at the knees, it is devoid of compassion or humour, just like a computer. It will just do what it is programmed to do. It see’s the world literally, through our 5 senses, and houses all our memories, every single experience has been filed away in the archives, even the basic ones, like how to walk! The subconscious thinks in the present moment, so the most effective way to communicate with it, is to make a present tense statement that a 7 year old can understand. Re-write the software of your mind and you change the printout of your experience.

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Family Hand Me Downs – When The Issue Isn’t Yours ….

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We are all familiar with the treasured items that get passed down through a family from generation to generation, perhaps a piece of jewellery or a painting, they can possess great financial or sentimental value. These items are family heirlooms and can become part of the lives of consecutive generations, paying homage to our perceived roots.

However the same applies to the non-physical – and not-so treasured – familial patterns.  These are the unconscious burdens and inherited belief systems we carry from generation to generation.  We can inherit not only their genes but also their self-limiting beliefs, their psychological shadows, their anxieties and much more across generations.

You may see this in the way you have worked extensively on your issues but they simply refuse to budge. You probably have a great awareness of your issue which makes it all the more frustrating as whilst you are acutely aware of it’s presence and subsequent restrictions on your life, it’s showing no sign of dissipating anytime soon. If this is the case it’s well worth asking ‘is this baggage even mine?’ It’s no secret that a lot of behaviour is learnt behaviour from our parents and caregivers. But perhaps it’s lesser known that there is also behaviour which is the result of the unconscious absorption of the emotional burdens that were simply too big for our parents and caregivers to carry all by themselves.  In this case you may have unconsciously agreed to take some of this on to help them carry it.

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If You’re Going To Make One Resolution This Year……

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Make it this:

Trust yourself.

It’s simple, yet admittedly not always easy. Trusting and acting upon your intuition can be frightening, yet if we don’t we end up buffeted about by the winds and wills of others’ desires and advice. If we continue to ignore or override our inner voice we will end up feeling dissatisfied at best, deeply resentful and unwell at worst.

Your intuition is actually an unflinching truth-teller committed to your well-being; it’s your own best friend. If you allow yourself the time and space to practise listening to, and most importantly acting upon, your intuition you can begin to rely on it as the most incredible vehicle to navigate you through life’s waters.

So how do we access this potent form of inner wisdom? Well, it’s not about the intellect or logical conscious mind, rather it’s the still, small voice inside. It’s accessible to us all and because the voice of ‘quiet’ gut is exactly that, we need to allow the space in our lives and within our selves to be able to ‘hear’ it.

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The Law of Reversed Effect – Are you trying too hard?

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There are many physical laws that we live by. Jump off a building (that’s not a suggestion!) and you’ll experience the physical law of gravitation. As we have physical laws there are also mental laws. These laws are just as real and we can use them for either our benefit or detriment. When it comes to the mind, especially the subconscious mind, one of the most important mental laws to get to grips with is ‘The Law of Reversed Effect’:

The Law of Reversed Effect states; “The greater the conscious effort, the less the subconscious response” or understood another way “Whenever the will (conscious mind) and imagination (subconscious) are in conflict, the imagination (subconscious) always wins.”

It’s helpful to understand that the subconscious is infinitely more powerful than the conscious and it is your ‘inner protector’. Its primary function is to prevent you from getting hurt and it learns and remembers rules and behaviours in order to do exactly this. These rules and behaviours are created from emotional responses to events which, more often than not, occurred in childhood. Each situation that reminds the subconscious of the childhood event gets treated according to the rule that was created back there, back then. This rule is then reinforced and becomes a habit, something you just do automatically without thinking.

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The Law Of Attraction & Hypnotherapy

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Ever wondered why the Law of Attraction is not working for you in your life? No matter how many times you ‘think’ about your ideal life, somehow nothing changes. Do you believe that magic seems to happen for other people and not you? If only it was as simple as they all make out, all you have to do is think, daydream, be and act happy and your life will change! So after consistently trying over a period of time, you may still find yourself at the starting post, with nothing but a new pair of shoes to show for your deliberate effort. Eventually you may lose hope and decide that all this positive thinking doesn’t work for you. However, there is a reasonable and logical explanation. When it comes to creating significant change in our lives, it is essential that we have our subconscious minds on our side. Wanting with our conscious mind is one thing, but our subconscious may have a totally different agenda, holding at bay, everything you desire.

We come to understand that the most important part of creating our reality is being in the right place emotionally to let whatever it is we want, IN. We can spend our lives deciding and defining what we want. But if we are still caught up in the past by holding onto those negative feelings and beliefs, our lives will remain the same. Our energy is somehow stuck, swallowed up by something that no longer exists. The past is therefore creating our reality. All those positive, well meaning, thoughts cannot override that. Your subconscious and the beliefs you are holding within your being are defining your life as it is right now, in this moment. This is a state of being that shines the spotlight on the fact that there is no space for old beliefs, bitterness and resentment, if feeling good is our ultimate goal. Hypnotherapy changes old beliefs and clears out obsolete, negative programmes that no longer serve us in the present moment. The Universe reveals the truth to us, in a way that we can finally get real, and stop trying to force life to work for us from a past paradigm.

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Additional Credits

Video by Weeks360.

Photography by Liz Bishop Photography.

Production by Mark Norman at Little Joe Media and Joanne Brooks.

Hair by Jonny Albutt.

Make up by Olly Fisk and Nabeel Hussain.