3 steps to curing harm OCD

© Rene Asmussen
© Rene Asmussen

Step 1)   Understand what happened

In our natural environment we faced real dangers, such as lions. The instinct to harm here is obvious — part of the “fight or flight” response. You either fight the danger or run away.

In our modern environment, we can still very easily feel stressed and “under attack,” even if it’s not in the literal sense of the word. And so, when this primitive mechanism is triggered, suddenly you have these thoughts, or instincts, to harm someone — even someone you love. Continue reading

Trauma Release Exercises (TRE) and Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT)

Lizelle asks…

“What are your thoughts on trauma release exercises (TRE)? Have you done them? Apparently our bodies hold trauma even from years ago, which puts a person in a constant flight/fight/freeze state, always very alert and sensing ‘danger.’ With TRE the body releases the energy held up in it from trauma. Would love to hear your thoughts on it.”

I haven’t done any of those exercises myself, but I’ve heard a few health teachers talk highly of Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT), tapping certain points on the body to release old emotional stuff.

From my own experience, meditation, mindfulness, the right diet, sleep etc. are all that is needed.

Traumatic events can certainly have powerful spin offs and we hold the sense of danger to prevent repeats, quite naturally. I do think there is great value in thinking about what you fear in a way that allows you to really let it go, to see it has no value to keep looking for it.

In other words, use intelligence to trump the lizard brain. These mechanisms are good for preventing say repeat lion attacks, back when our ancestors evolved in nature, but the same mechanisms can be dysfunctional in modern life.  Continue reading

How to cope with bereavement

Sinead asks…

Do you have any advice on bereavement?

Tips

  • Be present. “Witness” your thoughts and emotions. Grief, anger, fear… whatever it is, just watch. This brings light (awareness) to everything and stops you becoming it.
  • Remove attention to get relief from the feeling of loss. Focus completely on whatever you’re currently doing. Lose yourself in a movie or book.
  • Be ok with feeling ok. Don’t feel guilty about feeling better or having periods of “normality” while grieving. It doesn’t mean you didn’t love the person. It just means you’re choosing the focus of your attention.
  • Minimize thinking. Now is not a good time for active thinking. Give yourself the time and space to let everything settle down. Delay important decisions until you’re feeling better.
  • Help others with their grief. Being a rock for them means staying alert and present. In that state, you are much less likely to get lost in emotion yourself. Be spacious and loving and you will find your own grief easier to bear.
  • Appreciate your time together. If you’d like to think about the person, focus on their life and the relationship you enjoyed with them. They wouldn’t want you to be sad.
  • Take care of yourself. It’s easy to get into unhealthy habits during a period of mourning. Try to maintain a healthy lifestyle as much as you can.

Best wishes,
Michael Kinnaird

A simple lifestyle blueprint to cure depression naturally

Depression turns into happiness by correcting the true causes.

Is depression caused by a serotonin deficiency in the brain?

After 25 years researching health and happiness, the idea that a disease state is caused by lack of a single neurotransmitter in the brain seems ludicrous.

Human biochemistry is incredibly complex with countless interacting processes mediated by genetics and lifestyle factors. The serotonin hypothesis of depression is really a house of cards with no foundations.
Continue reading

Is happiness a choice?

happiness is a choice

I see this idea floating around the web, especially on social media a lot. Is happiness really a choice? If you’re depressed are you really choosing that state willingly? It kind of reminds me of the type of advice depressed people used to get all the time — “just snap out of it,” or “pull yourself together.” As if. If a depressed person were to see this idea, I think it would make them feel worse not better.  Continue reading

Happy Guide: Make 2015 a Happy New Year

Today, James and I are shocked and speechless because of this wonderful and thoughtful review of Happy Guide by Jessica Thompson on Beautiful Health. Thank you so much Jessica!

Beautiful Health

Happy Guide Cover

I don’t usually review books on my blog, but recently I’ve read a couple that have stuck with me that I simply must write about. The first of those books is Happy Guide: 6 Simple Lifestyle Changes for Health and Happiness by Michael Kinnaird.

I must say, this post has been a long time coming. I first read this book back in May, and I reread it just last month. It’s certainly one of those books that you can keep referring to when you need a little guidance.

Happy Guide, as the name suggests, is a guide to happiness. And no, it’s not one of those self-help books that makes you jump through hoops in the pursuit of happiness. It provides six very simple, very achievable steps that you can follow to achieve the happiness you truly deserve.

Let me just take a second to mention the time of year…

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Design your weekly diet to optimize results

woman eating at table
© Mark Nye. Designing your weekly diet pays off massively for your long term health and happiness.

I do a lot of number crunching to ensure the Happy Guide diet advice is perfect. But because we are all different, have different health concerns and like different foods, I highly recommend designing your own diet on cronometer.com. And you can use the Happy Guide diet structure as a template.  Continue reading