children

23
May

Yoga Therapy for Teenagers

I attended a Yoga Therapy for Kids workshop last weekend and I learnt not only all the benefits of Yoga but also how you can use Yoga to help children (and adults) with conditions like…
Anxiety
Depression
Weight issues
Bed wetting
Asthma
Diabetes
Stress
Healthy digestion
Healthy backs.
I will be incorporating these exercises into my meditation classes for teenagers.

As described in my Zenergy Kids Teacher Training Course Manual… “Yoga correctives are a series of therapeutic exercises that work with the body to bring it back into balance. The aim of corrective exercises is to bring the energy flow back into the meridians and to assist the body in its natural healing process. They correct the functioning of organs, the body systems and correct structural imbalances”.

For example to have a healthy digestive system we need to look at how the Large Intestine functions.

On a metaphysical level our Large Intestine is all about letting go and feeling worthy. You can work with this by understanding that our thoughts do not define who we are, unless we give a thought some energy (more thought) a thought will simply pass through our minds. To help with this you can do simple breathing exercises to help release any unwanted thoughts by closing your eyes, taking in a deep breathe and on your out breathe imagine blowing out that negative thought, out into the universe and away from your mind.

On a physical level our Large Intestine is all about our healthy bacteria levels in our digestive system and also the releasing of waste material. A great way to help with this is to decrease sugars in your diet and increase natural fibres in your diet. To help with the function of the muscles around the large Intestine you can lie on your back with your legs above you and cycle your legs around (forwards and backwards) and to each side – continue this for a few minutes.

Give these tips a go today or you can do them with your children if they are suffering from either the physical or metaphysical side effects of a sluggish Large Intestine.

If you or your child would like more information about my classes, please email me at [email protected] For a limited time I am also offering a free trial session to both my adult and teenage classes.

To your happiness always,

Signature-Debbie-e1404124371738

 

3
May

Live Mindfully

Mindfulness has become a buzz word in recent times, yet I have found that not many people know what it is or how to incorporate mindfulness into their ‘busy’ lives. In the Dictionary mindfulness is described as… a technique in which one focuses one’s full attention only on the present, experiencing thoughts, feelings, and sensations but not judging them:
The practice of mindfulness can reduce stress and physical pain.

For me, I explain mindfulness to my clients as – focusing on the present moment without judgement or anxiety about what is or what should be or what needs to be. It is simply focusing on the now within your body and experiencing peace and ease within that moment.

‘When we are mindful, deeply in touch with the present moment, our understanding of what is going on deepens, and we begin to be filled with acceptance, joy, peace and love’ – Thich Nhat Hanh

Here 12 simple ways that you can bring mindfulness into your everyday life…

1. Take a walk.
Spend some time standing still and concentrating on your breathe. Walk at a relaxed, fairly slow pace. Focus on the body movements you are making with each leg, each arm and body. Inhale as you lift your foot, exhale as you place it down. Repeat.
2. Eat something.
Rather than shovelling in your food, take time to taste it, smell it, enjoy it, feel the temperature of your food and feel the texture. This is a much healthier option to eating.
3. Drink something hot.
Close your eyes and feel the warm liquid in your mouth and subsequently as it travels down your throat into your stomach.
4. Listen to music.
Listen to all the different sounds and instruments in the music. If there are lyrics separate the lyrics from the melody. Tap to the music. Hum or sing along. Where in your body you can feel the sound?
5. Do Yoga, Tai Chi, Qigong or other similar moving meditation exercise.
A combination of stretching, breathing and movement.
6. Driving.
Turn off the radio, tone down your anxiety about getting somewhere on time and enjoy the quiet time to yourself.
7. Make art.
Painting, drawing, sewing, crafts, or anything creative is incredibly meditative. Put on some quiet music as well, light a candle and enjoy creating.
8. Journal.
Each day write in your gratitude journal. Notice the pressure of the pen on the paper. The sound of the tip scraping along the page. The way the ink bleeds. How the pen feels in your hand. Now, take a deep breath, and allow mindfulness to flow, going deeper. You will then start to write with complete presence, using your intuition and inner wisdom.
9. Wash your hands.
Feel the water flow over your hands, feel the temperature. Smell the soap. Dry your hands on a towel and feel the towel against your skin.
10. Give a massage.
Touch is a powerful thing. Give yourself or give someone else a massage. Receive a massage. Feel the pressure, oil and warmth of your skin and the other person’s skin.
11. Breathe.
The easiest of all! Yet something we often forget about. How you breathe can determine how anxious or relaxed you are feeling. Slow down your breathe and breath into your belly. Watching your belly rise and fall with each breathe.
12. Gazing.
Staring at a candle flame or something similar, allowing yourself to become immersed in the object as you quieten the mind.

It really is this simple to become more mindful in your life, to allow that peace, acceptance, joy and love in.

Give one of them a go right now! And commit to doing one (or more) each and everyday.

I run regular weekly meditation sessions, to help you to become more mindful. Please email me on [email protected] to claim your free trial meditation session.

To your happiness always,
Signature-Debbie-e1404124371738

27
Apr

Ups and downs

I am often asked by my clients how to navigate and manage through life’s ups and downs and why do the downs continue to come? It is something that even I still struggle with coping with the downs of life.

My biggest piece of advice is that ups and downs will always be there, they will continue through life as we cannot experience a happy time if we do not experience the sad time. Life is not just filled with the good bits or ‘Photo Album Moments’ which are great moments, yet it is not in these moments that we learn and grow as people. It is in the not so good bits that we develop and help to make us the person that we are today.

For me, to overcome these downs and continue to move toward the light of life, is to take action to move away from the down and into a place of peace. When life is throwing you a curve ball if you are in a place of peace, you will be able to navigate through it easier and more effectively without wallowing in self-pity and becoming the victim. As when self-pity and victim mode takes over it will take you longer to move through the down!

For me, I maintain this place of peace in my life through meditation, seeing the bigger picture of daily downs (and ups) and treating myself (and those around me) with more self-compassion. I am writing about this today as this was me yesterday, as I exploded in anger at my family over something small and feeling like I was been pushed to my limits. Yet rather than seeing that I have failed I look at this moment as a learning curve and a way to show and teach my children that sometimes we do feel angry and it is okay. It is important to express anger (in a productive and controlled way) yet when we allow the emotion to overtake us we cannot control ourselves. As I noticed what was happening I removed myself from the situation to allow myself get back into a place of peace.

This place of peace is the key. To get to this place of peace takes ACTION not wallowing ACTION. My action was to remove myself and re-centre myself to see the bigger picture of what was going on!

What ACTION can you take to navigate through life’s ups and downs?

Until my next blog, enjoy your children.

To your happiness,

Signature -Debbie

22
Mar

10 Steps to Prevent Bullying for Your Child

Bullying occurs all around us; as a child in the schoolyard, as a teenager in the Cyberworld and even as an adult in the workplace! As a society we need to raise awareness around bullying, as the effects on both the victim and bully can last a lifetime.

I am passionate about helping other families to feel empowered over bullying. I experienced bullying in my school years and for many years after the bullying occurred I suffered from feelings of low self-worth and feelings of not being good enough.

I believe that no child or adult should experience bullying or live from the long-term effects of bullying like I did.

These 10 simple steps will help you to take your power back and prevent bullying in your child (as either a bully or victim of bullying):

  1. Deal with your personal issues: it is important to get Mum feeling confident and in control of her life first, which will then flow down to her children. The more we can look within and work on our own stuff the less we will feel the need to put others down to make ourselves feel better.
  2. Create empathy: model and teach your children to be empathetic and how to recognize emotions that are being experienced by those around them. Be understanding and empathetic towards your children for what they are going through.
  3. Communication: keep the lines of communication open with your children, so they are comfortable with talking to you about what is really going on at school and on social media.
  4. Resilience: encourage resilience in your children, modelling and talking them through how they can ‘bounce back’ from difficult times, setbacks, and other significant challenges.
  5. Attention: give your child quality one on one attention. This is important to help your child feel valued and worthy or your time and love. By helping your child to feel valued in the home environment will reduce the chances of them going outside the home environment for validation.
  6. Accept your child for who they are: love and accept your child as they are right now. If we can accept our children and show this to them though love and feeling proud of them.
  7. Do not label your children: do not give your children labels, like shy, rude, naughty or terrible. This will on reinforce the behavior that you are trying to avoid. If you call someone a name long enough, then that is what they will believe within themselves.
  8. Discipline your child with love: discipline your child from a place of love, not form a place of anger and frustration. It is important to teach children how to deal with their own anger through modelling appropriate anger management within ourselves.
  9. Teach your children how to be social: model and teach your children to be social through your own social relationships. Children learn through our example and need to know how to treat people socially.
  10. Encourage your children to be independent: by encouraging your children to be independent, we are putting our trust in them and saying that we think they are responsible enough and mature enough to cope with a given task.

The most important thing for children who are either experiencing bullying or who are bullying is to look within and underneath to see what is happening for them inside emotionally. When we are able to address these internal fears, anxieties or sadness then their external behaviours will start to match their internal feelings. When you only deal with the external bullying it has a short-term effect, to make the changes long lasting we need to deal with the internal emotions that are causing the bullying.

Start today to implement these steps into your life. Remembering to talk and acknowledge what is going on with your child and see it through their eyes.

Order your copy of my book, Beyond The Schoolyard by clicking here.

To your happiness,

Signature -Debbie

 

16
Mar

Love Your Brain!

With 4 school aged children in both primary and high school, I am very passionate about how to support children’s brains in learning. hence I have developed a program called ‘Love Your Brain’.

Our brains are just like any other muscle in our body, it needs to be exercised and looked after to function at its optimum level.

What can I do to help support my children’s brain in learning???

  • Water and lots of it! Check out my previous blog on the importance of water.
  • Make sure they are eating food high in protein (at every meal), check out my previous blog here on protein.
  • Encourage them to do brain exercises, check out my previous blog on some simple brain exercises.
  • Allow for relaxation time, time for the brain to unwind and relax. I love talking my kids through a gentle meditation before they go off to sleep.
  • Ensure they are getting enough sleep. Sleep is when the brain repairs itself, develops and allows it to relax a be ready for another day at school.
  • Have fun with my kids. As much as learning and discipline is important it is just as important that our brains have fun, to allow for our feel good endorphins to be released within our bodies.
  • Keep out additives, colourings, flavourings and preservatives from their diets. These are artificial products and can cause the brain to go either hyper, confused or anxious.
  • Lots of love and guidance. Some of the basic needs of our children are to feel safe and loved, if they do not feel this then their brains will not function as calmly and effectively as possible.

It does seem like a lot of things to do for our children’s brain, yet it really is not and I am sure you are already doing a few of these points.

It is about seeing your child’s brain as a focus and nurturing it through these different points.

Based on these points I will be running a webinar called ‘Love Your Brain’. It is a 1 hour webinar containing lots of information about how you can help improve the function of your child’s brain. These webinars are very informative and a must for all parents and teachers. To register for this ‘must see’ webinar please click here.

Until my next blog, enjoy your children and don’t forget to Love their Brains!

Signature -Debbie

 

1
Dec

Get Organised For Christmas

With the Christmas excitement building I want to share with you some important tips to get yourself organised for Christmas, so you can start to relax and enjoy the festive season.

I love Christmas and all the joys it brings, spending time with family and friends, surprises and lots of food. With all of this comes a lot of preparation and time needed to get Christmas organised! So I have come up with a list of 7 essential things you can do in the lead up to Christmas to help you focus on the magic of Christmas rather than the stress of getting everything done!

1.       Accept that it is crazy busy

I think this is a huge one, we need to accept that this time of the year does get busy with lots of social engagements, cooking and shopping. Accept what it is and what you can or cannot get done. Do not focus on all that you haven’t done, but instead on what you did achieve – even if it was helping your daughter for 1.5 hours to write her school Christmas Cards!

2.       Make a ‘Things to do list’ of all the things that you need to.

For those of you who know me, I love my ‘Things to do lists’, I do them regularly for big projects I am working on and I also do them on a weekly basis for weekly activities – which incorporate my bigger lists. I know they take time to set up, but believe me the feeling of accomplishment you get when you tick things off your lists is worth the extra effort.

3.       Look after yourself

This one can be a tricky one, especially with all of the social gatherings and copious amounts of food this time of the year brings. Obviously I am not saying don’t go out and enjoy yourself, because that is a major part of the fun of Christmas. What I am saying is when you at home, opt for that healthier option and drink more water to counter balance the food or drink that you enjoyed the night before.

4.       Start a present list.

Every year I print off my standard list from my computer (I use Excel for this) with everyone’s name who I need to buy a present for, including family, friends, teachers, kids friends etc. Then I write down next to their name what I will buy. I find this is a great way to keep track of who and what I am buying and then I will then use my present list as my shopping list when I head to the shops. No-one ever gets forgotten!

5.       Use your Junk Mail.

Start to use that never ending supply of Junk Mail which all of our letterboxes are bombarded with at this time of the year to think of ideas for presents, especially for those hard to buy for. Shop smarter, so when you do actually go to the shops you know exactly what you are buying rather than wondering around the shops looking!

6.       Spread that Christmas Spirit

At times, especially when we are busy we tend to only focus on ourselves and the things we need to do. This Christmas season, take some time out to do something for someone around you who may need a little extra help or just because. Imagine if we all did one thing special for someone in our lives, think about how fantastic it will be for the Spirit of Christmas to grow and extend outwards. And could you also imagine if everyone at the shops let one person in front of them either at a queue or driving, the shopping centre would be filled with happier and less stressed out people!

7.       Have fun and enjoy it

Above all remember it is Christmas and it only comes once a year, enjoy it and spend time with all those you love and cherish. Let go of what you could’ve or should’ve done and just be in the moment of all the magic that Christmas brings.

With all that said, I would like to take this opportunity to wish you and all your families a very Happy and Safe Christmas. Enjoy.

Signature -Debbie

 

25
Sep

Multitasking Uncovered

The most important thing about Multitasking is how it effects and rewires our brains! Our brains are not wired to do multiple tasks at the one time.

Think about how our brains work, they are already really busy with relying information across to where it needs to go, storing information, processing and acting on outside stimulation, processing and acting on inside stimulation and the list goes on. We are constantly thinking at the rate of approximately 70,000 thoughts (conscious and sub-conscious) in one day. That is huge and very energetically taxing. Now think about if we add in the process of doing more than one task at a time, in its already busy state, the brain will get confused and will slow down its processing. As the brain swaps between the different tasks we are trying to complete quickly it will cause our brain to become confused and stressed!

Studies show that the human brain can’t handle more than one task at a time. Even though we think we’re multitasking, our brains are actually switching rapidly between tasks”. (The Myth Of Multitasking, Scientific America. 2009, July).

Our brains are changeable and are constantly changing through our daily activities. We are able to change the way our brain works by doing repetitive activities, which allows the brain create the new pathways. Think about that and the effect that long-term Multitasking will have on your brain. Through Multitasking we are actually training our brain to not focus on one thing (especially on the smaller details) and our memory (as our brain is switching between tasks it will leave very little time for a memory to be created). Before I began my no-multitasking mission, I was beginning to notice that I was forgetting things and I thought that my memory was failing me! This frightened me as it was becoming quite bad that I would put something down in the house and 5 minutes later I could not find it and I would forget play dates or coffee dates I had organized with close friends and family. There was nothing wrong with my memory – the problem was that I was not focusing my attention on one thing! It got to the point when I was talking to friends or family, I was actually thinking about what I had to do later, which meant that my mind was not present, so how could I possibly remember the interaction we had. Unfortunately and fortunately it is through this that we train our brains how to think, react and remember things by the way we engage in current life. So I was actually teaching my brain not to remember as I was not allowing it to focus on any one thing for too long.

This is supported by Dr David Meyer, a psychology professor at the University of Michigan, agrees with another US psychologist Dr John Arden, that when humans multitask too much, they can experience short-term memory problems or difficulty concentrating. Of course, what else would the brain do but what we teach it to do!

As you now know Multitasking causes us to feel stressed and anxious on an emotional level and a Brain level! For example when you are going from here to there for all different tasks you get stressed out, especially when one thing does not go as smoothly as you had imagined. I know I was guilty of this when I was trying to still be a bookkeeper for clients at home and trying to squeeze in the time to get it done in between doing washing, tending to the kids, answering messages and even checking facebook. This caused me great stress as at the end of the day I would say to my husband I feel like I have done nothing all day today, but I have been so busy. Then this thought would cause me more stress as I did not get the work done and the deadline was looming. My next thought was that the same thing was going to happen tomorrow. So as you can see my bookkeeping work ended up being like a huge task when in reality it was only about 8-10 hours a fortnight, but when you break down the work into little chunks it was much longer than that as it would take me twice as long starting and stopping and I felt like I was constantly doing it as I was squeezing it in between everything else.

So once again, we are actually wiring the brain up for stress and anxiety around getting tasks completed, as it does not know how else to process tasks if we are always doing multiple things at the same time!

How can you incorporate more single task activities in your daily routines to allow your brain a chance to think clearer and more concise over the one thing?

This has been a excerpt from my “Ignite Your Possibilities” eCourse, Be More Effective With Your Time section. For more information on this please click here.

Until my next blog enjoy your children.

Signature -Debbie

18
Sep

Improve The Function Of Your Brain

Brain exercises are an important way to maintain and improve brain function. Brain Gym are physical exercises that stimulate different areas of the brain and help the brain to be function calmly. When the brain is calm it is much more effective in its ability to do things with ease.

 

Brain exercises are really effective with children and their learning. They are also equally effective in adults and in maintaining their brain health and brain activity. If we do not use our brains then we will lose its ability to do things. Our brain are amazing as they can be changed and taught how to do things. It just takes practice and repetition.

 

Here are the main 4 brain exercises for you to practice on a daily basis:

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Water – water is vital for brain function. When we become dehydrated (even just a little) our thinking becomes foggy and tired.

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Brain Button – This is a stimulation point for the brain. It is great for eye tracking, processing of sensory information, enhanced energy level, hand-eye co-ordination.

Simply rub on the sternum (as shown in picture), then hold your opposite hand still on your belly button. Rub for 30 seconds and then swap your hands over to repeat using the opposite hands.

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Crosscrawling – Improves the communication between the left and right side of the brain (logic and gestalt areas). It is great for whole body co-ordination and increased learning capabilities.

This is a marching on the spot brain exercise. Using the opposite arm and leg to cross over the midline of the body to touch one another (elbow to knee). Continue marching for 1-2 minutes.

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Hook-ups – Are a relaxing and energizing exercise. They are great for emotional calm and self-esteem. Especially good for improving attentiveness as it encourages the brain to be calm and focused.

This brain exercise is broken down in 2 parts. The first part is cross your hand and feet over (as shown in diagram) and place your tongue on the roof of your mouth. Hold this position for 30-40 seconds (remembering to breathe). The second part is to place your feet flat on the floor with your finger tips touching and your tongue on the bottom of your mouth (as shown in diagram). Hold this position for 30-40 seconds (remembering to breathe).

Give them a try on yourself and your children. These are best done in the morning each day before work or school begins. They are a great way to wake up the brain!

This is an excerpt from my “Ignite Your Possibilities” eCourse, Self-Care Made Easy section. For more information, click here.

Until my next blog, enjoy your children.

Signature -Debbie

10
Sep

Sweet Dreams – How To Beat Insomnia!

Did you know that sleep deprivation is a form of torture! It makes sense because how often do we feel anxious, stressed, moody, fatigued, cranky, unmotivated etc. etc. (and the list goes on and on) when we do not get enough sleep at night.

Sleep is important for restoring physical and mental health, it will refresh the mind and repair the body.

Sleep is as essential for good health as is oxygen, food and water.

Often we struggle to fall asleep, as we think things over and over in our minds. We relive the events of the day – what we did and what we did not do. We also start to think about all the things that we need to do tomorrow. Both of which are really pointless thoughts as often we don’t remember what we are planning or revisiting the next morning anyway (unless you are like me and have a pen and paper by the bedside to catch these ‘important’ thoughts)!

It is these random thoughts that keep our mind stimulated and prevents us from falling asleep. Yet how do you stop these thoughts without getting anxious and starting to look at the clock worried that you are not asleep yet and should be.

A technique I learnt through my counselling kinesiology which I use and I encourage my clients to use is a combination of counting backwards and catching yourself thinking. The repetitive task of counting backwards requires you to focus on counting which takes your focus away from these random thoughts.

If we were untroubled by thoughts, then we would bore ourselves to sleep!

Troubling thoughts will wake us up and when these thoughts come up again they prevent us from counting – we forget where we are with our counting and we become aware that thoughts have crept in again. By gently returning our focus back onto the counting task, we teach our mind to let go of arousing thoughts to enable us to fall deeper and deeper into relaxation and sleep will follow.

This exercise:

  1. Write in your mind’s eye 100
  2. Write in your mind’s eye deeper
  3. Write in your mind’s eye 99
  4. Write in your mind’s eye deeper
  5. Write in your mind’s eye 98
  6. Write in your mind’s eye deeper
  7. Continue on slowly and if your thoughts appear again then that is okay, just release that thought and begin again.

Please note when I have mentioned mind’s eye – I am referring to your imagination or your thoughts.

Often the first night you practice this, it will feel like this exercise is actually keeping you awake at night. After a few nights of practice you will get into the groove of the counting and find it more and more relaxing the more nights you practice it. I have even gotten my daughter to do this one (whom is often lying awake for hours thinking) – she can now only count to 95 and then she will be fast asleep!

Give it a go and see what number you can reach?

This is an excerpt from my “Ignite Your Possibilities” eCourse – Self-Care Made Easy section. For more information on this and others ways you can make self care easy, click here.

Until my next blog, enjoy your children.

Signature -Debbie

 

18
Aug

Tip 5 – To prevent bullying for your child

Did you know that giving your child one on one attention is a powerful and easy way to build their self-confidence.

Spending one on one time with your child will help your child to feel valued and worthy of your time and love.

By helping your child to feel valued in the home environment will reduce the chances of them going outside the home environment for validation.

This is an easy to implement and will help prevent bullying in your child. It does not have to be a long time, it can just be 5 minutes – make it quality time rather than quantity.

Give it a go and have fun with it. Make it fun.

Until my next blog, enjoy your children.

Signature -Debbie

Beyond the School Yard

Meditation Made Easy!
Bring Calm & Focus to Your Life