What burn out is and how to avoid throwing yourself off the cliff edge.
Definition: A state of emotional, physical and mental exhaustion caused by excessive and prolonged stress.
Often in my work as a Clinical Hypnotherapist clients will present themselves in a state of burn out or heading towards it, at the speed of an express train.
“I have tried everything else and coming to see you is my last hope” No pressure to perform eh?
Often the human in front of me has been running on empty for many months, if not years, and in some last ditch attempt tries hypnotherapy.
Sometimes undue stress is caused by overwork or long hours other times a traumatic event or toxic lifestyle / relationship has happened or is still happening and that added to other pressures just tips the scales the wrong way. Perhaps this person had has no facility to debrief from an event or situation before more of the same is heaped upon them until their knees give way and they buckle under the weight.
To be specific I find my Clinic room filled with NHS staff at all levels, police, accountancy staff, business managers and owners, even some NHS surgeons are working on zero hour contracts of employment, whilst doing stalwart work with patients and gruelling waiting lists. School teachers are also prone to long term stress, in fact, today stress is increasing and social media and news broadcasting to folks that it is going to get worse really do not help!
So, HOW CAN I HELP?
A clinical hypnotherapist can often provide guidance, suggestions, counselling, hypnosis and uses other tools like EFT and NLP, and talking through the whole situation.
Reviewing choices with support and setting SMART GOALS may be the way forwards and using self hypnosis to reduce stress and induce relaxed state of being might be a good place to begin.
Using hypnosis to stop bingeing, stop procrastinating and feeling like getting back into exercising and scheduling TIME OUT in your diary just for you.
Being supported to build self esteem and confidence.
So “what qualifies me to help others”
Well, not only am I suitably qualified, insured and experienced as a complementary therapist and hypnotherapist, I also have had personal experience of being burned out.
Not a pretty state to find myself in around 12 years ago when I was that stressed executive and career woman. I have pulled back from the abyss and understand some of the thoughts, behaviours and feeling others may have.
I too, at times, have neglected having that holiday away and have caught myself heading to that cliff again…only now I recognise the symptoms and know how essential it is to RELAX, take exercise, switch off and self-indulge, so that I can be available to continue helping others.
That is why I am here waiting on you and the people you care about to contact me and I invite you to BECOME SELFISH so that like me you can be SELFLESS to others, because you are running on a full battery.
Give me a call or send me an email…Choose Change and Become Calm, Contented and in Control.
When you decide you want to do something new, or reach that goal you have always wanted, just how exactly do you do that?
Let me look at some of the things I decided when I was a child that I wanted to be:
Question: Which of these could I have achieved with a little help and encouragement from my parents?
Answer: ALL OF THEM
Which ones did I achieve? A beautiful woman - who incidentally did not know she was beautiful until she was 59! What a waste of time...wishing for something I already was.
So what exactly did I achieve as an adult?
I enrolled for university at 52, I graduated as an adult educator in transition to parenthood. I became a Doula, in my opinion more satisfying than a midwife role. I became a Clinical Hypnotherapist. I lost 3 stone in weight somewhere and never found it again! I regained my confidence for driving. I have been successfully self-employed for over 30 years.
I set TASKS and found a way to achieve each one.
Yes, I used hypnotherapy as a task for driving confidence. I used other things as well to achieve my goals because HYPNOTHERAPY is a blend of HYPNOSIS and THERAPY which requires input from the recipient and well as the hypnotist.
Back to SMART.
SMALL steps lead to a final product. You can eat an elephant in small bites ! It takes time to learn new skills.
MEASURABLE. Be exact not hazy, BE specific. Do not use words like try, the word 'try' sets you up to fail, use words like 'I will'.
ACHIEVABLE. The goal must be possible. If you can’t run for toffee are you really going to become an Olympic athlete? Rather being the best you can be would be more realistic. So the goal could read something like this: I will become the best runner that I can, doing my best all the time. To do that I will begin a program of running, eating better and getting enough rest.
Setting up your own business and becoming your own boss maybe plausible but becoming a millionaire overnight is not realistic without a lot of effort, time and hard work.
REALISTIC. e.g. does the goal suit your personality? Is what you want within your capacity including perhaps re-training? Learning new skills?
TESTABLE. How will you know when you have achieved your goal, what does success look like? What will you be able to do once you achieve the goal?
Look at your personality
If you are defensive/aggressive or forceful would you achieve in a role that required a great deal of diplomacy and patience/flexibility? So perhaps becoming a secondary school teacher would not be as suitable as being a sales team leader or a sales person, left to your own devices and given a target to achieve.
However if you have a nurturing caring personality you would probably do well as a teacher of children.
If you are flighty, dramatic and always require to be the centre of attention, with short attention span, and not known for calmness then perhaps neither position would suit you long term.
Trying to achieve and maintain a goal because it is what you have always wanted is pretty pointless, if it outside your scope of ability like being a brain surgeon or a prima ballerina! Or me deciding I want to look like Angelina Jolie!
Statements like this are actually looking at the past not the future.
'I have to'
'I need to'
They all apply pressure on ourselves.
Can we start using statements instead like:
'I would like to be able to________________'
'I can see myself being ________________'
'I know that I can________________'
'When I am/can________________my life will be improved'
Really decide where you are going and what you are after.
Try to avoid areas that would leave you without the support of others.
Build support from others into the steps of working towards the goal.
Focus on what is right and good about your goal rather than any downsides.
Trust your own ability to be adaptable and solve problems as they arise.
Focus on what excites you, motivates you.
If you love excitement and change don’t go for something that will require constant repetition.
e.g. a job as a copy typist !
If you are impatient choose a goal that you will see quick progress with to motivate you further.
WE ALL NEED TO BE ABLE TO CREATE A VISUAL MENTAL IMAGE OF OUR GOALS.
It takes time to build out picture of what our success will look like.
THINK POSITIVE, THINK POSITIVE, THINK POSITIVE
'I don’t want to look stupid
'I don’t want to be fat'
'I don’t want to be a smoker'
'I am determined not to fail'
Are all negative statements
Positive statements are:
'I want to look as if I know what I am talking about'
'I want to be able to shed surplus fat and be healthier'
'I look forward to being a non smoker'
'I am ready to succeed'
Move towards SOLUTIONS rather than away from PROBLEMS.
Do you really want your goal or merely think you should want your goal?
Are you trying to please someone else by doing what you think they want you to do or what they insist you do?
Unless you are working towards WHAT YOU WANT success will be limited.
Ignore any feelings of being selfish, ignore any feelings that you owe someone something, ignore a guilty conscience. Ignore the thought that this is good for others but not for me, I am not good enough! That is simple nonsense, you are here because your ancestors were successful at living at doing, being, surviving, it is hardwired into your DNA to succeed.
If the goal is partly to make someone else happy, then if it is only part of your goal and the other part of your goal is also to make you happy, then that has a higher chance of success.
All your goals must be of maximum benefit to yourself.
If something is distasteful to you will not be able to achieve it, i.e. a backpacking holiday along the Great Wall of China to please someone else.
List the resources you need to achieve your goals
Are they resources achievable? Can they be staged down to be achievable?
What will you do when you have achieved your goal?
What will life be like?
Do you know? Have you dreamed it? Can you feel it?
You really have to want your goals
There are setbacks, hiccups and so you need to be realistic and know that there are usually bad bits attached to success. Be ready to deal with the bad bits on the journey.
What are the advantages and disadvantages of the success you seek?
List them and work out how you will deal with them before you start.
e.g. some friends may not like the changes in me and decided to remove themselves from my life.
Once you have the visual mental image and have all four senses attached you then write at least three affirmations to go with the goal.
e..g. Language is important so try these starting points:
'I will be successful in my attempt at________________'
'I always find success at/in________________because I expect success'
'I will feel totally confident when I________________'
'I always feel confident in my abilities when I________________'
So, now YOU have a clearer idea of how to set S.M.A.R.T. goals, I look forward to hearing YOUR SUCCESS STORIES. Email me at email@example.com
Here in the heart of West Lothian, close to the town of Livingston and nestled in the middle of Linlithgow, Dechmont, Broxburn, Uphall, and the The Calders lives a wise and gentle soul, a bit wacky, a bit unusual, certainly a dedicated Crone who serves the community as best she can providing a warm welcome, hypnosis, and support to those both living here and passing through.
The world had achieved great changes in the past few decades. Huge strides forward from men landing on the moon, the probe landing on a comet, the first heart transplant to robotics in medicine. Many homes in the UK have fridges, freezers, automatic washing machines, tumble driers, dishwashers, hoovers, the list goes on, steamers, slow cookers, George Foreman Grills, the list goes on, we mostly have cars, better health care and wardrobes full of clothes and stacks of shoes oh and not forgetting computers in nearly every home, mobile phones or to be more correct devices! And the internet.
Are we as a people happier than we were 50 years ago? Are we as a people CONTENT with life? With what we have?
I reckon those questions are subjective depending on our own individual perspectives would you agree?
I remember 12 years ago deciding to step sideways away from the ownership of a big house, a bidet, a breakfast room, a utility room, a dining room, a living room, 4 bedrooms, a cabin in the garden and a garage, a fully fitted kitchen etc. I down sized as soon as the 3 step kids went their own way and the two of us were left wandering through a massive house on our own.
The sad part is that while my values were not attached to the big house the persona of success and my partners were attached so when I downsized the house and the lifestyle I also downsized the relationship although it did take 7 years to reduce to 0%. Sad at the time however life changes daily whether we choose change or not.
Wealthy? Beyond measure…I have friends, real close ones and some becoming closer, I have a home, a garden, a dog, 2 cats and 8 fish tanks, my knowledge and experiences, a love a people, a desire to help others, a partner who gently pushes me to be independent and able for life, a feeling of safety and contentment within that relationship, a relationship also with nature, the real world, which delights me and soothes me whether it is walking on autumn leaves, crossing the fields, looking at hills and trees or working in the garden.
My mind is at peace with itself. I no longer need to compete with myself. I no longer need to prove to myself or others anything.
I can simply live and enjoy living each day because I have honoured myself and appreciate what I am and who I am, I see myself and my failings but no longer berate myself for being human. I have a relationship with the universe that goes far beyond the physical realms into the realms of Cosmic Consciousness. I feel connected to all living things past, present and future.
I have discovered that for me life is about how I respond to it rather than what it presents to me. I can choose my desires, I can then control my desires and strengthen my own mind, my own being, to enable me to live within the tumultuous world around me with a Calm, Comfortable Contentment. My journey from where I was to where I am began the day I first tasted Reiki ( I tasted it, I smelled it, I was touched by it) and today is where I am as I complete my Dip CAH in hypnotherapy. Today matters most because that is where my feelings are, right now as I type this for those who will read it to this word.
My desire is to be used as a catalyst by others to support them in their own journey as a partner in their seeking their own Inner Peace. The list at the top? I have some of them and live happily without some of them, they no longer matter, what really matters is being alive.
A footnote from my partner. We don’t buy contentment we achieve it.
A footnote to my partner. We trust and respect each other, nothing else matters, if that is love then I love you.
If you are looking for more contentment in your life, more courage, more calm, more acceptance, more relaxation, more confidence, more control over your thoughts, feelings and actions, MORE OUT OF BEING ALIVE, contact me, together with honesty, unconditional positive regard for the client/therapist relationship, together with Hope, Belief and Commitment, I know, you know, do you not ? That Change can happen, CHOOSE CHANGE AND BECOME CONTENTED.
Whatever you want
Whatever you like
Whatever you say
Whatever you need
As a Doula, I help you prepare for one of, if not the most, important events in your life.
Every time I attend a mum in labour, I bring the total of all my previous experiences and lessons learned at previous births with me.
From the day we agree to work together, I help to care for you in the remainder of your pregnancy, birth and beyond.
Being a doula is not just a job...it’s a vocation…I love being a Doula. I am passionate about it and I also have a great deal of knowledge and experience.
As a Doula I offer non-clinical, emotional and practical support to a woman (or couple) before, during and after childbirth. My aim is to assist women, and their partners, to have the most satisfying and empowering time they can during pregnancy, birth and the early days as a new parent. What I like to witness is the family relaxed and enjoying the experience and journey.
As a Doula I seek to respect and honour client’s choices. It is your baby, your body and your choices. As a Doula I can, and do, signpost parents to quality information to assist parents in making fully informed decisions that they feel comfortable with. Being able to align myself with my client’s philosophy in birthing matters, rather than with my own, is very comforting to parents.
So, it is important to meet potential Doulas and to find the one which best “fits” with you and what you are needing.
I aim to help parents be prepared and have tools to support themselves during labour, birth and early parenthood using Hypnobirthing techniques, relaxation scripts, breathing, comfort, practical help and foster a positive mindset in parents.
The benefits of having a Doula
Many studies have shown that having a Doula reduces incidences of Cesarean birth, use of anesthesia, shortens labour and provides mums with positive reflection and good memories of their experience.
If you are wondering if I am worth my fee. Weigh up the long lasting benefits of a new Travel System compared to 'Having a Doula', who helps to steer you on a wonderful path for you, your baby and your family for the foreseeable future.
Sometimes it helps partners to know there is someone else present with them while they support the mum. Someone with some experience and knowledge of birth, so that they can focus on supporting rather than worrying about ‘doing the right thing’, or when to call the midwife in, or go to the birth place. I feel that a Doula takes some of the strain off the supporting partner; and that always helps a mum in labour to feel calm. Clients do not feel like they are alone when a Doula is there; reassuring them that all is usual and well, or suggesting it is time to seek clinical help. Removing, or giving balance to, the stereo-typed negative drama of childbirth, makes such a positive difference to parents.
I am mentally strong and supportive and able to stand up for others when required to do so. Sometimes support is simply attending midwife and consultant appointments with the mum and her partner. Having a third party there seems to make a difference for the parents. Sometimes it is visiting you, or chatting with you on the phone, when you require my presence in your journey.
What on earth do I do when I am with a mum for one of those long drawn-out labours?
Walk in the snow with her, or the beach in summer, bake a cake, read stories to the toddler, massage mum, supply cooling refreshing drinks and tasty snacks, laugh, snooze, make the dinner for the family, whatever it takes, whatever you want, whatever you need.
How far do you travel?
I work a radius of 100 miles from my home (maximum distance I will travel each way) considering that I will usually make 5 or 6 visits to your home / hospital and also spend two days with you teaching antenatal and hypnosis techniques, be with you for as much of your labour (including very early labour) as possible, the birth and postnatal time and…also provide you with the best I can…I am worth your investment.
Well, I live most of my year ‘On Call’, sleeping with the phone beside the bed waiting on YOU to call and say I think I am in labour.
Being a Doula takes commitment
This is actually quite a balancing act.
Luckily for me I have no children to arrange care for. And my husband manages to look after the cats, the dog and eight fish tanks when I am not around! However, it does mean I restrict my daily activities to being five minutes away from my car at all times. I explain to friends and family that I may need to leave the cinema, restaurant, or their home in a flash! Sometimes asking them to visit me - because they really do live 40 miles in the opposite direction to your home. I always have a back-up plan for family birthdays and theatre outings, so that husband has a substitute partner if I am called out.
I always have a packed bag in the car and a pile of clean clothes beside the shower. Often I munch and slurp oatcakes and half a cup of tea, as I run out the door with my devoted husband saying "I loves you, see you next month!"
It's fair to say my liver loves me being a Doula, as I am DRY when on call!
I am grateful that I am surrounded by a husband, family and friends that understand just how seriously I take my responsibilities for every mum I attend. I guess they all do their own part of supporting you, as well.
Since I chose this way of life in 2009, I have never failed to go to a woman in labour when called, I have never counted the hours I work. Although some labours have taken a couple of days and others a mere hour from the call! On Call can be 3 or 4 days to 28 or more before the call comes.
Don’t take MY word for it, read what mums and dads say in their testimonials or watch the wee film of mums chatting to the film producer about what it means to them on my Birth and Postnatal Doula page.
Mums, dads and babies this year are booked in for Fife, Tayside and Angus so my wee car will be seen chugging along many beautiful roads in 2019.
And retirement? Personally, I can’t see that far ahead! I am in my 60’s and loving every single day of life and especially the opportunity I have to be a positive part in the lives of so many families, why would I EVER want to retire?!
I hope this has helped you in making your decision.
5/12/2018 0 Comments
Below is a testimonial from one of my recent clients Rosemary, from her Facebook feed:
"I would like to recommend Renee Elliott as a birth doula and hypnobirthing teacher and also mention the incredible contribution that a good doula has for any childbirth - as a doula is often an unknown or misunderstood part of the birth process.
My husband and I both come from a scientific/mathematical background, so our initial bias towards maternity care was that the 'doctors know best' as I expected that they would use an evidence-based approach at the center of their decision making. However the more that I have learned about maternity care, the more I discovered that much of it is based on little or no evidence.
I had never heard of a doula or the concept of a 'positive birth' until I happened to meet a doula before I gave birth to my first child. I realised that I had a lot of misconceptions about birth and I started obsessively reading articles and watching positive birth videos. I saw the pure joy and elation on the countless mum's faces when their baby was placed on their chest and I knew that I wanted to experience that too!
Although, I chose not to use a doula at that time because I thought I could use the learning I made to make informed decisions for myself. I greatly underestimated how difficult it is to go against hospital protocols especially when you are 9 months pregnant and a doctor tells you that your child is at risk!
Long story short, the birth of my daughter was a very fearful event. It started with an induction that I didn't really want and ended up with a c-section that quite probably could have been avoided. After the birth, both my husband and I were traumatised and my daughter had a very rocky start to breastfeeding, which put a lot of unnecessary stress on us during the early weeks/months of our daughter's life.
I decided then that the next time, I would have a doula and after becoming pregnant with baby #2, I met Renee. We got on straight away and I was impressed that she was a fully licensed hypnotherapist, as I had already decided that hypnobirthing would be a great option for both me and my husband. I also knew from my experience that I would not labour well in the labour ward and as a VBAC mum, any alternative to the labour ward would require a battle against the hospital's protocols. I could tell that Renee was just the sort person needed in my corner to get the kind of birth I wanted.
I am so glad that I chose Renee. She helped me negotiate a bespoke birth plan with my consultant (which hadn't been done before in Edinburgh) and helped me prepare for the birth with a 1-2-1 hypnobirthing course and being on-hand to provide support when needed.
The birth of my son was a completely different experience. I labored at home for 24 hours and then transferred to the hospital for the final few hours/delivery. Most people seem sympathetic towards me when they hear that I labored for so long, but honestly I really enjoyed the time at home. It was like a little party in my house where I was the guest of honour! During that time I was massaged, fed sandwiches, listened to music, sat in a warm pool... etc. And the hypnobirthing really did help. It made me relax and bond with my husband and baby during the birth. Even though the gas and air canister was their the whole time, I rarely felt the need to use it.
When I finally did transfer to the labour ward, I was advanced enough in my labor that the transfer didn't have a negative impact. My experience in the labour ward was very different to my previous experience. The midwives and doctors really went out of their way to give me as gentle a birth as possible.
A few hours later, I was able to complete my VBAC journey with only needing an episiotomy to make space for my large baby. I did choose to have an epidural so that I could rest before pushing (as at that point I had been awake for nearly 40 hours!!). Although, the epidural was not topped up, so I could still feel the urge to push myself.
The feeling of my son sliding out of my body and being placed on my chest was the single most incredible experience of my life! The start of my son's life has been so much more enjoyable and has helped give a sense of closure from my daughter's traumatic birth. Also, since my son wasn't groggy from morphine, starting breastfeeding has been so much easier and the initial checks confirm that my son is feeding well.
I honestly don't think I could have done it without the help and support of Renee. I wouldn't have thought to negotiate the birth plan that I had and I know that laboring at the hospital would not have been as productive for me. Also, the hypnobirthing course and practice was a big help and made the day so much more enjoyable.
I feel really thankful to have had a positive birth experience. A week on and I still think on the events of the day and smile to myself. I cannot thank Renee enough and would definitely recommend her to anyone looking for a positive birth experience."
#doula #hypnobirthing #mindandbodyscotland #vbac #reneemcbride #birth
So last week I was reading a report about Abortion Doula work and the more I read, the more I felt a rising emotional wave within myself and an internal dialogue, the result if which led me to change my own bio on Facebook and to make additional information available on my website.
As a student of antenatal education the training by the NCT was such that personal bias was put aside in the teaching of mum’s and dad’s to enable personal choice in alignment with each persons own beliefs, values and social circles and so I learned not to lead others into ways of being that matched my values and beliefs, rather I learned to provide quality, unbiased, current information and empowered parents to make their own decisions.
When I trained as an Advanced Clinical Hypnotherapist we discussed unconditional positive regard for our hypnotherapy clients and the importance of rapport in any therapeutic relationship.
As a Doula I seek to respect and honour client’s choices, it is Your Baby, Your Body and Your Choices, not mine, sure I search for and signpost parents to quality information and I walk beside them all through the pregnancy, labour, birth and postnatal period (beside not in front or behind).
In my work I have, and do, support people from all backgrounds in dealing with all manner of stressful situations, behaviours and emotional journeys, working with drug and alcohol addictions, phobias, relationship issues and many more aspects of simply being human.
I have supported women who have multiple miscarriages, some who work to achieve fertility, those who struggle to find a place of acceptance of a childless life, support parents through childbirth with various outcomes including undiagnosed illnesses of the new born and sometimes birthing their stillborn baby. I have also supported mums to continue their pregnancy following rape and assault.
Through all of this, I strive to remain respectful at all times.
So last week, I found myself emerging from the article like a kind of metamorphosis becoming ready, in fact, I am ready to support women and parents when faced with choices around continuing with a pregnancy. It could be through identification of foetal anomaly during a second trimester ultrasound scan and/or blood tests, or uncertainty within a relationship, lack of support, financial constraints, contraception failure and other reasons.
Whatever the circumstances I stand firmly for a woman’s right to choose what happens with her own body, and her right to have the best support possible. For some women there is no one to turn to, no one to trust, no one to walk beside her. No one to perhaps provide her with information on choices, procedures, available clinical care. Maybe she doesn’t have a listening ear, a companion to go with her to clinic appointments, someone to be there on the day, to hold her in a sacred, safe space and to be available in the days, weeks and months that follow, if needed. For some, like the women of Northern Ireland, there are as yet no clinical provisions and therefore a journey to Scotland including a couple of nights in our home is available providing there are no adverse reactions to our two cats, a dog and numerous fish tanks.
If you or someone you know is looking for unconditional support then I, amongst others are available.
I am a Full Spectrum Doula and I am at your service.
One of the most delicate areas of work that I have the privilege of working with parents in, is in the realms of conception, pregnancy and birth. I have often considered the fine line between life and death. Nothing focuses my attention on this balance more than working with both women and men in and around fertility and parenthood. This includes when that journey involves the loss and grief of infertility, recurrent miscarriages, stillborn babies and infant mortality.
I am aware of external support such as S.A.N.D.S. Lothian who do a truly amazing amount of support work and education of support workers. I admire the mums and dads who run sponsored marathons to raise funds to increase the scope of the work.
I work as a Doula as well as a Clinical Hypnotherapist. My daily work brings me into contact with parents, mums and dads who are having babies, looking for birth support, seeking ways to help themselves to become more at one with the birth process. They use tools like Hypnosis, and Hypnobirthing to prepare them for labour, birth and parenthood.
Not all stories have a happy outcome and I am reminded as I work, of those who have a more difficult time, in some cases a traumatic or deeply life-changing journey.
It is one of the primal drives of being human. The drive to survive is in built and requires two basic components: to eat and to procreate. In most cultures, including our own, it is expected that couples will have children. There is still a stigma against those women who decide to remain childless. There is still, by and large, an unrelenting pressure on couples to settle down, have kids and live happily ever after. Add to that the woman who has suffered repeated miscarriages and who is still working her way through the maze hoping to achieve her deepest desires to become a mother. And there is the mum who already has a child (or more than one) who finds that what she once took for granted, will no longer happen?
Does it help when statistics say that those couples who have unprotected sex for a year without conception are considered infertile? Or that after the age of 35, your chances of conception are reduced? Does it help when all women feel they are too late, they have missed their chance, left it too late? Fertility is not linear, in other words fertility is individual. A woman, at aged 45, could be more likely to conceive than another woman at 30.
Does it matter whether it takes 30 days or 1030 days to conceive? It does to many couples who are trying to do so. With the passing of time their hopes can become faded, their mood depressive.
For those women who repeatedly miscarry, does it help when others say stock pile responses such as, 'you are young', 'you have plenty of time', 'it was early anyway', 'don’t worry', 'count your blessings', 'you already have one healthy child', 'children are not everything'... Oh yes it matters. Every single word matters.
How long does it take to get over loss? Do we get over loss? Do we learn to live with loss? Sometimes when parents go through the formal ceremony of saying goodbye, it is not enough. Some parents have the chance to say hello to their child before they have to say goodbye. Others are only able to say hello to their sleeping baby.
There are no stock answers. There should and can always be compassion.
The infertile couple (1 in 6) have not failed.
Saying goodbye to a tiny baby deserves support, time and compassion.
Couples straining with the magnitude of repeated loss of babies, require support to see them through their journey. Whether that support includes lots of talking time, a new focus, self-help such as self-hypnosis, there are many ways to help overcome grief.
Women who sacrifice through diet, curtailing hobbies/sports, cutting out pleasures that 'may be' bad for conception, changing life patterns, require support. Those who find their social circle shrinking because support from family and friends diminishes, need support. Those who find it too hard to move within circles of friends and family who are having babies and raising children, need support.
If parents who still find ways to remember their sleeping babies invite to annual remembrance rituals, go if you can support them, they still need your support.
Encourage those who need support to find support through organisations of therapists who will help them.
If you have suffered loss and you think any of these thoughts: 'It is all my fault', 'I will never have a baby, 'I don’t trust my body', 'I have let everybody down'. You need support.
To those who are reading this and have been on this journey I wish you love and peace and acknowledgement of what you have or are going through….
Do you need a way to voice your own truth? If you haven’t been able to tell friends, family, work colleagues or anyone else what you want/need to say, what would you say? Give me a call, I am very happy to give you the support that you need. Contact me.
I wondered how to share this message with all of you who will read it. I decided simply to tell it as it is and to give you an inside picture of my mind. That’s right… an inside picture of your Hypnotherapist's and Doula's mind…
On Saturday past, I felt strong urge to go straight home after “The Gathering” in Edinburgh. It's a gathering of Hypnotherapists from all over the UK and one who flew in from Spain to present a technique. It was a fantastic day and having been invited to join some colleagues from the south of England for a drink I thought 'Why Not?' ...immediately I said yes, then I became uncomfortable with my decision. I could not work out why ? Great day, great people, lots of laughter and learning. Why did I get that gut feeling that I had to go straight home to be with my husband?
I didn’t even stay to find the lovely woman and explain, I simply left A.S.A.P. I had to get home pronto…
On arriving home around 7pm, I found a poorly man, with a full-on headache, hot, flushed face. By 9pm he was staggering on his way up the stairs to bed. Through the night he refused to allow me to call the NHS (in hindsight I should have done so). By 10pm he thought we were on holiday and was confused, and I will spare you and him the rest of the gory details of that night. Suffice to say that it took a visit the next lunch time from a friend before he agreed to medical care.
His Blood Pressure was 80/54 and his pee was bright orange.
So, it has been a roller coaster ride since Saturday . Though I'm happy to say he is on the mend, big leaps forwards every day.
Antibiotics are my biggest friend right now, the truly save lives for some folks, do they not?
A brush with the fine line between life and death has taught me much.
How did I Cope?
It is indeed a wise thing to have coping mechanisms, when all else fails.
That old adage: 'Take a Day at a Time'. I didn’t allow myself to get too far ahead, after all I can only guess at the future, can I not? None of us really see the future, we imagine it though and if our imagination runs riot we get carried away… beginning with our fertile imaginations making up all sorts of outcomes, good or bad. So I knew to live it an hour, a day at a time. Have you ever thought on this…? When something happens which we don’t like, scares us, etc. and you say HOW MANY MORE TIMES must I / we go through this…the best response may be JUST ONE MORE TIME, you can do ONE MORE TIME, can you not? Just one more hour, day, week? Just one more time.
I trusted the doctors. The doctor in St Johns Hospital in Livingston, the doctor in Broxburn and I trusted the process that was happening inside his body when he was given antibiotics.
I was inquisitive, I questioned everything that I thought of, that was said, I wanted to learn, to know, what to do.
I knew it would pass, perhaps slowly, perhaps painfully, but it would pass, just like when I used to have a phobia of driving, flying and dying, yup I had all three at various stages in my life, can you imagine that?
I reached out to both friends and family. My own family and my husband’s family, I found supporting them and them supporting me was the best ever feeling. Talking to others helps at times.
It’s a good time to let bygones BE bygones too. Forgiving others frees up space within me, resenting festers inside and takes up too much time. Its Autumn, is it not? The time when leaves fall, the time when we prune our shrubs? So, sometimes it means we need to do an internal pruning too, and sometimes we need to prune our contacts, so I did some personal pruning and felt easier, stronger, more able to cope.
I counted my blessings, I named them one by one. 1005 days since we first met, 1005 days of laughter and companionship.
When my inner Chimp became restless and started screaming, I started breathing, breathing in slowly and out even slower, it calmed my troubled mind, actually I used the breathing exercises that I teach my Doula Mums and that I teach in Hypnobirthing / Antenatal classes. It soothed my anxiety, calmed my soul. Worrying about the situation would not change it, dealing with it, doing what I could do and staying positive would help, and it did.
So, where am I at now?
In a place of being, calm, confident and in control… I have become contented that all is being done that can be done.
I know that Life is uncertain, there are no guarantees…
I know that Life is too short to hold grudges.
I know we can all choose how to be with others and in certain situations.
I can be as prepared as I can for life’s uncertainties so that I can get on with the business of appreciating and enjoying every day as it comes.
I leave you with the insight that I wasn’t always so able to cope with adversity, I learned to cope. If any of you reading this wish to deal with any fears or phobias or general anxiety that is making your life more stressed than it needs to be; if you wish to become calm, confident and in control; if you wish to be supported in change, changing perspective, changing behaviours, then contact me and let's have a chat.
And finally…Today and all your tomorrows
Laugh when you can, apologize when you should, and let go of what you can’t change, forgive quickly, take chances, give everything, and HAVE NO REGRETS, LIFE IS TOO SHORT to be anything but HAPPY !
PS. Trust your gut instinct. I was needed at home...
This month just gets better and better. As I say to ALL my hypnosis clients…repeat after me: “Every Day in EVERY WAY, I AM getting better and better”. So, EVERY DAY for the next 10 Days say this x 10 daily and see for yourself...say it like you mean it, emphasis on the I AM. It makes little difference whether you want to change bad habits into good ones; stop self-sabotaging eating patterns; gain more confidence; or reduce anxiety this short mantra will help you in your efforts to get more out of life..
As we run up to the longest day in the year, I feel my energy levels rising. Can YOU?
After a busy week last week, I enjoyed a very green and relaxed drive down to the Borders on Sunday to visit the next mum-in-waiting. I saw cute villages on the way: Pathead, Dalkeith, St Boswells, Jedburgh, Melrose, Hawick and Galashiels all basking in the sun and roadsides blooming with Dog Rose and Hawthorn, fields full of buttercups and horses and sheep enjoying the early summer weather.
A treat of four beautiful Cocker Spaniels were a extra pleasure during my visit.
Today I spent most of the day trawling through N.I.C.E. Guidelines on Maternity Care during Labour and Birth, the Midwifery and Nursing Council Code and www.homebirth.org.uk all in preparation for a midwife appointment with a client later this week.
Tomorrow brings a farewell - a funeral for a friend - and it reminds me tearfully of a song from Les Miserables (Empty Chairs at Empty Tables) and the work I have done with clients on grief and loss. I have helped people cope with the loss of family and friends, relationships and sometimes I have worked with mums on fertility and coping with pregnancy loss.
This morning I had a wonderful reflexology session and came home feeling like a new me!
Later this week I have a couple of Doula appointments; a great friend is coming in for hypnotherapy to alleviate her fear of flying, just before her holiday and I am helping with driving and exam anxiety. Then I am off to Kilmarnock and Beith to run a hypnobirthing course at the weekend.
Perhaps when I get back from Hawick on Thursday I will drive to the Bathgate Hills and climb Cairnpapple to watch the sunset on Midsummers Day and give thanks for my many blessings... anyone care to join me? Renee
14/6/2018 0 Comments
Hello peeps, today I am in warm Glasgow sitting outside drinking frothy coffee and appreciating the opportunity of being ‘On Call’ for a west of Scotland family. Glasgow, like everywhere else, is beautiful in the sun and the people smile more while the sun shines; and because they are not all encased in winter coats and hidden under umbrellas, I people watched. In about 30 minutes, I am sure I saw many from the Far East, the Middle East, Europe, America and South America. Aren’t humans colourful! Every single one beautiful by their own measure, every one of them different from all others, yet still all the same species, different religions, values, shapes and sizes, all ages, ALL together in Glasgow city centre. There was music playing. John Lennon. IMAGINE. I was moved by the beauty, the gathering, the vision of John Lennon.
I found myself wondering how different the scene before me would have been 60 years ago when mum and dad took me into Glasgow shopping. I wondered about how much we gave become hybrid humans, eclectic mixes of genes as I watched couples holding hands and pushing prams, or travel systems as they are now known as!
I marvel at it all, then as a Clinical Hypnotherapist I begin wondering how happy, or contented each one may be, or not.. I like John Lennon want the world to be a more contented place, a happy space for the human race. I count my blessings, 62 years young and well enough to work, to travel around Scotland working and people watching, meeting you, all you amazingly wonderful people.
This week has been such a crazy mix of working fun! Here is what's been going on...
Sunday: meeting a Doula family, a bit of extra bonding and birth plan chat in Glasgow and birthday shopping for an anxious ex agoraphobia hypnotherapy client who has become a family friend and superb dog sitter1 ...Followed by a bit of comedy at the S.S.E.C....home at 11.30pm
Monday: a Doula client has teeny premature baby at 1am in Simpson’s Maternity Hospital, Edinburgh... later that day I have a Reiki and hypnosis session with a client who lives with cancer - pain relief and confidence boosting is on the menu. Followed by a visit to mum and premature baby...then a drive to Ayrshire to Crosshouse Maternity Unit near Irvine, well actually it’s almost in Kilmarnock as a mum settles into her in patient room ready for the labour and birth of her baby...home at 11.15pm
What day is it? Ah Tuesday! It starts off gently with a visit to new teeny baby and mum at Edinburgh Simpson’s and preparing tea at 5pm, then JOY! A call comes in and I am off to Kilmarnock, last night a strong, empowered mum gave birth to a beautiful baby, his dad by her side. Words cannot convey how blessed I am to witness this...home at 1.00am this morning.
Wednesday: catch up time, house like midden, slow cooker on, Doula bags unpacked for now!
Reiki client at high noon; birthday girl arriving soon; catch up on supervision calls with new Doulas tonight; hypnotherapy for insomnia at 6.30pm (if I am still awake); pregnancy massage booked for Thursday night; hypnobirthing books to post to Skye, Falkirk and Irvine; a birthday party for a fantastic three year old diva on Saturday, followed by hypnosis for work performance and on Sunday, an other trip to teeny baby’s mum and a drive to Melrose in the Borders to catch up with the next mum-in waiting.
Speak soon. Renee
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