Category Archives: first steps


Lessons From a Prison Visit “A human being is part of a whole, called by us the Universe, a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings, as something separated from the rest, a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circles of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty” ~Albert Einstein Recently I somewhat reluctantly gave into a voice I had been hearing for several months.

The first time I heard the voice, I thought I had misunderstood. I had heard, “Prison…go and do this work at the men’s prison.” Certainly, mind was playing its game. I watched the thought, expecting it to come and go. It was a persistent, nagging thought so I offered token acceptance to the Universe. You pave the way and I will go.

I didn’t expect heaven and earth to move quite so quickly but as I learned, when something is intended, our ‘Yes’, even when given with half-hearted acquiescence, sets this physical plane into motion. Just a few days later, without a shred of effort, a door opened and the pieces began to fall into place. As my date at the prison approached I had just a little anxiety. What would it be like? What would they be like? I was concerned about connecting with the men and a thought flashed through my mind that my life hadn’t prepared me to connect with men in prison. What did I have to say that would make any difference to them? Even as I questioned my usefulness, I knew I wouldn’t have been led here if there wasn’t a reason, so I slipped rather effortlessly into surrender.

When I walked in the door, I didn’t have any anxiety, just a desire to bring something of value to the men. Originally, I was supposed to join Blaze, the gentleman who started the prison program, for my first session. A few days earlier I had found out he would not be in attendance and I was on my own. The door slammed behind me as I entered into the population and I felt a dense energy that for a moment was a bit unsettling. For that second, I wished I had company, someone who had walked this path before. The guard escorted me to the chaplain’s office and after we completed a few details, the chaplain walked me down the hall to academics where I would meet with the men. He needed to chaperone the Native American drumming circle so he left me in the room and I waited for the first of the men to appear. Blaze had told me that the men had big hearts and an amazing openness to Oneness. They were captive, with no where to go. I wondered if surrender to God is easier when you have already surrendered your life’s dream. The words flowed through me. I was merely the channel—like heaven’s radio station. The teachings encompassed both beginner and advanced material. I had never felt it come through me in quite that way.

One moment I would be talking about basic concepts and in the next moment, quite advanced teaching would come through. As I engaged with the men, it seemed to be perfect for that moment. We talked about Oneness and whether they were really a part of this Oneness. They were so honest. Yes, they had heard about Oneness. Yes, they intellectually got it. Yes, they hoped it was true, but, it was not a true knowing. With their permission I did a little energy work with each man and held my hands a few inches in front of their heart chakras and in back of the chair at heart level. After a few moments I was led to hold my hands above their Crown chakras. To a man, albeit to varying degrees, they each felt the energy. One in particular, a tall Irish man, asked if I had my hands on his head. My hands were 4 inches above his head. That observation gave us lots to talk about. If I end at my fingertips and you at the top of your head, how can you feel this energy? Is it possible that we really are One? Blaze was right. They were so amazingly open.

Their hearts were somewhat hidden, but willing…wanting. They could have been any group of men. They could have been friends, brothers, husbands, sons…sitting around the table at the holidays. Not one would have looked out of place. Sounds like enough of a tale…but for me, only the beginning. As I drove home, I began to realize a new appreciation for freedom and in the same breath, I was also given a new appreciation for incarceration. Each thing I did for the balance of the next two days took on a beauty of appreciation and gratitude that was exceedingly deep—things as simple as opening the door to my car, my house, being able to close the door to the bathroom, being surrounded by flowers in my gardens, or my dog laying her head in my lap. As I write about this now, I feel my heart cracking open again, even more fully, yet another level of love revealed.

After the visit I felt unable to get my balance, unable to integrate the time at the prison, like I was standing on the groundless, untethered to earth. I felt myself becoming each person who had ever been locked inside a prison…then each soul embroiled in war or hopelessly lost in poverty. The brightness of compassion was my saving grace. It could have been a deep hole, a desperation created by mind, as I also felt a small daemon—separateness—clinging to me, something that I hadn’t felt for quite a while. That evening in meditation, in an effort to befriend it, there was awareness of the crusader within, wanting to change the world, a part of the whole that had stepped out of Now and into should, into past and future. It took several days to integrate all the energy and information but slowly, with the help of friends, a context of five levels of imprisonment took form.

As I write, two additional levels became clear. 1) Unaware of imprisonment (mental and emotional) and physically free 2) Aware of imprisonment (mental and emotional) and physically free 3) Unaware of imprisonment (mental and emotional) and incarcerated 4) Aware of imprisonment (mental and emotional) and incarcerated 5) Aware of imprisonment and consciously incarcerated, choosing to retreat to a cave or to sit under the Bodhi tree in one’s commitment to find freedom 6) Free mentally, emotionally (spiritual freedom) and incarcerated 7) Free mentally, emotionally (spiritual freedom) and physically free—not imprisoned or incarcerated Looking at the list, I know where I sit. I sit under the Bodhi tree with the Buddha. I walk beside Jesus in the desert for 40 days and 40 nights. These articles are my incarceration, locked in step with the process of attaining freedom. I do not sit within a physical cave, but I clearly see the cave of mind, and shall remain dug in ‘til the last daemon is fully returned to the Whole. These words are evidence of commitment to freedom, of dedication to making the last thoughts and beliefs so transparent as to remove their ability to hide.

In awe of the power of forgiveness, willing to release all I have created in my ignorance against This that pervades all, I stand naked before God with nothing but Love. Physical freedom is merely another proving ground without spiritual freedom. It doesn’t matter where we find ourselves when we are imprisoned, when we see ourselves as separate from God. What does matter is what we do with our knowledge of imprisonment. What matters is that we begin walking towards freedom. Start walking and God’s pull will turn even the smallest steps into winged flight.

Motivational Courses Using Hypnotherapy NLP And Life Coaching Part 2/3

Now all of those are great reasons to go to the gym, but did they get you there? No. If the pleasure of going was a good enough reason, you would have done it already! So your commitment to this motivation you want, will be tested by using pain. During the motivational courses I have provided in St Albans, I have found that people are put off by this relatively simple concept which is really just about getting leverage. Leverage is a bit of an American term, but it gives us an idea of how we can apply movement to something that seems to be stuck- and remember that in order to be motivated, you must be moving. If you think of a great big boulder made of stone that you wanted to move, you could try pulling and pushing it and getting exhausted, but it probably wouldn’t budge easily. However, if you use a lever, you can apply half the amount of pressure, use half the energy and the boulder will move. Our pain reasons (negative/ stick) are going to work like a lever, so here is a list of those applied to the example of going to the gym: 1) There is a history of diabetes in my family. If I do not go to the gym I will be unfit and more likely to be ill like my father is. 2) I am currently single. If my body doesn’t get fit there is a strong possibility I will stay that way. Then I will never have children. 3) If I do not exercise my heart, I will be more likely to have a heart attack. 4) If I get sick, which is more likely when I am unfit, it will take me longer to recover because my body will struggle. I will be aging faster than my peers who will be enjoying their lives. Just take a look at the two lists of reasons. One is fluffy and one hits you in the gut. One list moves you, it takes you by surprise. Only one of those lists physically creates a shifting internal feeling when you read it. Now imagine that they were your reasons, applied to your motivational problem. Which list is going to get you doing something, pain of getting away from what you don’t want, or the pleasure of moving towards what you do want? In my private practice, I offer 3 different alternatives to help with motivation. This has been beneficial to the St Albans Motivation Courses, because it means that everybody is three times more likely to find a motivation solution that works for them. I start by providing a free consultation which takes about 40 minutes. There is no obligation to attend motivational sessions after you have attended the consultation, you can just come along to find out a bit more information about how I work, and I can find out more information about your particular problem. Now read Motivational Courses using Hypnotherapy, NLP and Life Coaching 3/3

Hypnosis And The Media Misconceptions

When you see a hypnotist portrayed in a movie, the script was presumably not written by a professional hypnotist, but rather by a writer who is calling upon his own interpretation of hypnosis. Presumably, that interpretation has been fed over the years by misconception. The product of his script continues to perpetuate that misconception. And so on it goes. It becomes a self propelling cycle of misinformation. As for the media, we can’t really expect to see or read stories about the successes of clinical hypnotherapy. There’s no media value to such a story. It isn’t sensational and it doesn’t merit a space in the newscast. We already know that media is fundamentally a business, and that producers have a mandate to achieve a certain readership level, and therefore choose their features based on what they know will get ratings. They have to be selective about the angle they choose to feature. This is true of any news story or subject, and hypnosis is no exception. It’s an unfortunate reality in society that we feed on bad news and negativity, and drama. So what you see in the media is the sensationalism, and the burden of reporting factually on clinical hypnotherapy is left to those of us who know the difference, because everyone else is happy to believe what they hear. We’ve come a long way, no doubt about it. But the dated impressions certainly continue to prevail. While both stage hypnosis and clinical hypnosis continue to build in popularity, clinical hypnosis does not elicit the same kind of mainstream media attention as stage hypnosis does. Entire campaigns are conceived to promote the theatrical effects of stage hypnosis. That’s the purpose, to entertain. But clinical hypnotherapy doesn’t elicit that kind of attention because it’s not at all newsworthy, or dramatic, or sensational. It isn’t intended to awe an audience. Therefore it fades in the background and fails to make its essence understood, except to those who make an effort to find out. The ongoing lack of awareness, lack of knowledge, or education on the subject is often evident in my therapy sessions. I usually investigate my client’s starting point before I proceed with their therapy. I like to assess their interpretations when they come to me, to identify what their expectations or fears may be. That way I know exactly where I have to start from, how many myths I have to dispel, how much foundation work I have to do before we can really proceed with therapy.

Where To Start With Law Of Attraction

If you’re just learning about the Law of Attraction and wondering where to start, or if you’re not seeing results and want to start over, I’d like to share a few tips on what I believe to be the best ways to get started: 1) Choosing more positive thoughts. Negative thinking is very much a habit, and it’s one that has the power to control your life in frightening ways! Before you can change your outer circumstances, you need to learn how to choose better thoughts. Take a moment right now and consider the general direction of your thoughts overall. Do you consistently focus on the negative? Are you stressed much of the time? Do you live in a constant state of anxiety and frustration? Begin turning that around immediately. You won’t be able to change it overnight, but you can gradually adopt a more positive thought habit. When you’re about to do something challenging, say aloud, “I know this will be a piece of cake!” Or when you’re waiting on some news, affirm over and over that it will work out in your favor. It will take effort on your part to CHOOSE more positive expectations, and you probably won’t believe the things you’re saying – not at first. But if you keep at it daily, little by little you’ll notice optimism becoming your new habit. 2) “Flow” positive emotions as often as possible! Emotion is absolutely one of the most powerful weapons you have in your arsenal against struggle and lack because EMOTION IS ENERGY! Whatever emotions you are feeling at a given moment is exactly the quality of energy you are emitting to the universe. Feel negative emotions, transmit a negative signal. Feel positive emotions, transmit a positive signal. Those signals are what attract your experiences! To improve the quality of your signal, begin doing what I call “energy sessions” each day. Find a quiet place to sit or lie down, and bring to mind something that you want. Imagine that you already have it and let your emotions rise higher and higher and higher! Feel WONDERFUL about this thing you have, and let feelings of joy, happiness, gratitude and contentment flow through your body. Get the feelings as strong as you possibly can, until you’re nearly weeping with joy! Believe it or not, just a few minutes of this activity daily can bring about positive changes so quickly it will take your breath away. 3) BE what you’re trying to attract. Finally, there is another super-duper-powerful technique that can create changes FAST. And that is BEING the person who already has what you want to attract. Let’s use an example: Imagine that you’re trying to attract more money into your life. As it stands right now, you’re struggling with lots of financial difficulties and focusing on lack a lot, which only attracts more money problems. In order to turn this around, begin thinking, feeling and acting like a person who has no money problems. How would such a person feel? How would such a person behave day to day? Most likely, that person would be calm, happy, grateful, centered and content. They’d pay their bills calmly and they wouldn’t worry about money, ever! They would FEEL abundant and blessed. If you begin thinking, feeling and acting that way too, guess what happens? You communicate to the universe that you are abundant and blessed – and the universe says, “Okay!” The truth is, the Law of Attraction is incredibly EASY to use once you know how! It’s just a matter of learning how to think, feel and act differently than you have been used to doing for most of your life. A period of adjustment is absolutely necessary – just like adopting ANY new habit! Don’t expect yourself to get it perfect right away. Simply work at improving your thoughts, emotions and expectations a little at a time, moment by moment. You may think that small changes won’t create big results, but I assure you they can! Eventually you’ll reach a point where you pause, look back and marvel at how much your life has changed, just because you were willing to take it a step at a time.

Which One Will Save Us?

I’m fond of the Lao Tzu quote: ‘An ant on the move does more than a dozing ox.’ Lao Tzu knew that small things could make big differences and that big things could be a bit – well shall we say – prone to sitting comfortably. According to his text in the, Tao Te Ching, humans have no special place within the Dao. They are just part of the many things in existence. But the problem with us humans is the fact we have desire, free-will and the capability to alter our nature. This means we can upset the natural balance of things without too much effort. Let me give you an example. I was recently standing by the kitchen window. I was gazing out at the water-logged fields. As I stood there I entered a discussion with my partner, Jo, about what it would take to raise children who are complete in love, compassion, balance and understanding. And while the answer to that question is simple – show the child love, compassion, balance and understanding – the reality of doing that all day, everyday may seem a little trickier. Why? Well, I was asking this question because this week I was taken back to a time when I was eight year old. At that time in my life I had started to throw tantrums. I did this because my parents didn’t respond to my demands for attention. And how could they? When I was eight my mum caught hepatitis. She was close to death for eight months, while my dad was half way through building a house, while at the same time having to put his business into liquidation. Meantime my older brother was having trouble with a teacher at our new school and as a result having trouble settling in. Right now, I’m about the same age as my dad was. My daughter is about the age I was when I threw my tantrums. From the ripe old age of 39 I can see why my dad is an idol and a man I should look up too. He did everything he could to hold it all together when it could so easily have gone wrong. In the end he completed a beautiful house. My mum recovered, my brother settled into school. But even without the kind of pressures my dad had, I can see why my kids need all my love, compassion and understanding. My eight year old, is doing what all kids her age are doing, wrestles to understand the rest of the world. I can see why my role as a parent is to be love, compassion and understanding. If I can do these things, all the ripples that were not love, can be returned to love and all frustration will be returned to harmony and balance. A bad day at school can mean a bad mood at home. A child doesn’t need a demanding domineering ego driven parent. They don;t need telling off. They need space, nurture, a smile, a kindness. And it’s no different when we look at the rest of life. When we struggle with our health, wealth, relationships, etc, all that needs to happen is one thing. All we need to do is return our self to harmony – that perfect, natural state of being where we existed before desire, free-will and the capability to alter our nature came into play. Be the ant on the move, change what needs to be changed. With love and good wishes Neil