The 14th to the 20th of October is Craniosacral Therapy Awareness Week.
I think the best way to learn about the therapy is to have a treatment!
If you have not experienced craniosacral therapy why not give it a try?
I will be offering taster treatments, free of charge on Sunday 20th October from 10am at my treatment room in Loughton as my own way of spreading awareness of the therapy.
I will be booking slots for the treatments, please contact me for further information or to book a place.
I realise in order to read this you will probably be using Wi-Fi and I am not suggesting for a minute we do without it! It is a great tool in helping us communicate and connect with one another. As human beings we have an innate desire to connect with another human. This feels so natural to us, we don’t even think about it, we just do it. So it might be no surprise that this need to connect arises from our basic instinct for survival.
As babies, we humans are unable to do pretty much anything for ourselves for the first year of our lives. We are totally reliant on our mother or other kind adult to provide us with food, warmth and safety. At this stage being able to connect with another human is a matter of life and death and is the basis for our strong desire for connection.
As we grow, forming strong healthy connections with our adult carers is essential for our mental and emotional wellbeing. Many issues with mental health in adult life can be traced back to the lack of having this need met during childhood. Being cut off from other people has a detrimental impact on our physical as well as our mental health, as research on loneliness in older people has shown.
Most of us will know how good it feels to connect with another person, whether it is in a group, individually with a friend or romantically. It makes us feel good, and when I say this I literally mean it FEELS good. Our emotions are mostly based on our brain responding to body sensation. How do you feel when you are with someone you have a strong connection with? Light, expansive, fizzing with energy or you may get that warm and calm ‘fuzzy feeling inside’.
But we are busy people. We rush from place to place with our heads full of ‘stuff’ and our ‘to do’ lists. We are often distracted and prone to daydreaming. Some of us may have even had experiences in our lives that mean we are completely out of touch with ourselves. All of this makes it difficult to connect with ourselves, let alone another person.
However, one way to help us connect well with ourselves and others is to be ‘present’. You know how it feels when you are talking to someone but you can sense they are not listening? This is an example of them not being ‘present’. How does it feel? Frustrating, upsetting? Now try and remember a time when someone gave you their full and undivided attention, listening carefully to all you said. How did that feel?
One of the ways to help us be more present is to be embodied. What I mean by this is that you can feel yourself in your body. All of you – your body, mind and consciousness are all fully attending and in the same place at the same time. You may have heard this called being grounded.
Fully inhabiting our bodies will help us bring our attention to the present and one of the best ways of doing this is to focus on our felt sense. This is the world of sensation, touch, smell, sound and taste. Focusing on our felt sense takes us out of our heads, where we often spend most of the time, and into our bodies. It helps us stay present, and yoga is the perfect way to make that deep connection with our body.
In yoga practice we focus on our breath, and on our body sensation as we go into a pose, hold it and come out again. We notice what is stiff, what moves easily, and notice if we are trying to force our body or can't be bothered to make the effort. We also notice if our mind becomes distracted – and as a result we get to know ourselves a whole lot better.
Another great way for those seeking deeper insight into and better connection with themselves is craniosacral therapy (CST). It allows you time and space to be with your self in a supported environment and the possibility to experience peace and stillness.
CST is a complementary therapy that has its origins in osteopathy. Biodynamic craniosacral therapy, the form I practice, is based on the understanding that the tissues in the body display a rhythmic motion and recognise this motion as a natural self healing force.
Throughout our lives factors such as accidents, injuries and physical and emotional stress cause our tissues and bodies to contract. This creates an imbalance that may result in illness. By listening with our hands to the subtle rhythmic tide-like movements, craniosacral therapists work to help raise vitality and support your body’s innate ability to balance and heal itself.
Who is it for? In this Biodynamic form of craniosacral therapy, we do not use manipulation. In fact, the treatment is so gentle it is suitable for people with fragile conditions. For example, after an operation or accident. People seek CST for many reasons, from helping to reduce stress and promote relaxation, to helping recovery from an illness, accident or chronic conditions like headaches or digestive disorders.
Whether you choose to connect with your friend, your loved ones, your pet or go for a walk in the forest and connect with nature, I wish you meaningful and fulfilling connections.
Originally posted on yogacrow.com
Taking a holistic approach to skincare means rather than just treating the surface of our skin we should look at the bigger picture and take into consideration how we are as a whole; our health, our thoughts and how this might be affecting our skin.
Most skin issues originate from an imbalance in the body or mind or, as one well respected complementary therapist calls it, the bodymind – as the two are inseparable. A perfect example of this is how stress can cause an outbreak of or exacerbate eczema. So if we can help ourselves by looking beyond the surface, we will get to the root of the problem rather than just managing the symptoms
Detoxing helps clean our system by removing toxins that have built up in our bodies. It is beneficial as our whole system is able to function more efficiently afterwards resulting in us feeling and looking healthier.
A cleanse or detox can be as gentle or as strict as you wish to make it. It will look very different for a coffee drinking, wine loving smoker than for a teetotal vegan but whichever detox route you choose to go down, cleansing and detoxing should be carried out with care. It is not suitable for women who are pregnant or breastfeeding or anyone who has a history of eating disorders. In some cases, particularly if you are taking medication or have a chronic health condition, it is only safe with supervision of a professional dietician, nutritionist or naturopath. However if you are able to do some form of cleanse it is well worth the effort.
Anyone who has ever been on a detox will tell you that half way through, they tend to look and feel pretty grotty but at the end their skin always looks great and they have more energy. A facial is a great treat in the middle of a detox when your skin is looking grey or spotty as the toxins are expelled and your enthusiasm is flagging. It helps boost morale and keep those mirages of chocolate at bay!
Although we have to stick to the rules whilst detoxing if we want the best results, it is important to bear in mind that we are dusting the cobwebs from the corners. Be gentle and kind in your approach - this is a way of caring for ourselves by supporting our health and well-being and not an endurance test.
Have a plan that you feel will challenge you but is achievable. It pays to plan well, avoiding time when you may have social engagements that involve eating or drinking alcohol. Make sure you have the cupboard stocked with food you are allowed to eat and within the limitations include things you enjoy; for example fruit smoothies.
Amina Pfeufer, Nutritional Practitioner
There is a great deal of information on how best to cleanse your system but I would recommend seeking advice from a professional nutritionist. If you are thinking of doing a body cleanse for the first time, I know just the person.
Amina Pfeufer is a nutritional and craniosacral therapist. If anyone can make you feel happy at the thought of eating your greens it is Amina. She is a ray of sunshine; her positivity is truly contagious and I highly recommend her.
Amina is a registered Nutritional practitioner (mBANT, mCNHC) practicing in London and Oxford, helping her clients in a wide range of areas, including digestive, reproductive and skin health.
After seeing friends and family battling with a variety of health conditions but failing to find conventional solutions, she decided to retrain in nutritional therapy, convinced that diet and lifestyle play a vital role in optimal health.
It is winter and spending more time indoors in heated houses and cars, along with colds and seasonal infections all contribute to drying out our skin. Here are some things you can do to help prevent dryness and keep skin hydrated.
Just like your wardrobe, skincare should change with the seasons. In winter using a cleansing milk or cream will be less drying than a face wash. You may need to use a night cream or heavier moisturiser at night and for those with very parched skin a face oil underneath a night cream.
Exfoliate skin once a week. This removes a build up of dead skin cells and ensures the products you use will be more effective.
When you apply your moisturiser or body lotion after washing or cleansing do it immediately – do not let you skin dry out too much. This will trap some much needed extra moisture.
The water in this part of the country is very hard, if you are lucky enough to have a water softener you will really reap the benefits at this time of year alternatively some bath salts will soften the water and prevent further drying out skin.
Use plant based products they have so much more to offer than mineral oil or paraffin used in many skincare products. There are a huge variety of plant oils and fats that contain beneficial vitamins, omega oils and phytosterols, some light and easily absorbed like Rosehip seed oil and others heavy and protective like Shea butter.
Massaging your face will detoxify and bring fresh oxygen and nutrients to your skin so do a little every day or …… book a facial and have me do it for you instead!