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Chronic Pain, Fatigue /ME & Fibromyalgia Recovery

It is not an understatement to say that we are suffering an epidemic of chronic pain in the health service1. This may manifest as depression, chronic back or shoulder pain or, at its worst it can develop into Chronic Fatigue Related Syndromes such as ‘Chronic Fatigue’ – now being called ‘Systemic Exertion Intolerance Disease – SIDS’ . If you have a diagnosis of CFS/ME or Fibro (or even if you have no definitive diagnosis), it can seem like your world has collapsed. Indeed, if you have researched on the internet you will read how it is a lifelong condition that you must ‘manage’ with drugs and surgery with little hope of a cure unless that ‘magic bullet’ treatment comes along. I’m here to tell you that’s not true. I had chronic fatigue and depression in my 30’s and I am fully recovered now.

It took me many years and a lot of money to discover the true causes and the truth was not an easy one. Firstly, there is no one ’cause’. There is no ‘one size fits all’ with such a complex, multi-factorial disease. The reason modern medicine hasn’t solved it yet is because it is only looking at the symptoms and treating them individually. So you will be prescribed sleeping tablets, anti-spasmodics/epileptics, anti-hypertensives (to lower your blood pressure), and pain killers, etc and be subject to a ’round-robin’ of appointments and tests if you’re lucky. Because of the way that the medical profession divides up into specialties means that they each have their own ‘part’ of the body that they look at and there is little understanding of how it all fits together as a system. Hence you will be sent from specialist to specialist with little overall view of what is going on and little consensus between specialists.

You will certainly receive many different medications which combine in your body to further toxify it but you will seldom hear what you can do to release the symptoms. You will not learn about an anti-inflammatory diet from your doctor (unless they are one of the few that have training in nutrition). You will not learn about the personality type link (Type A’s and/or people-pleasing) with a history of trauma (either childhood or adult unresolved emotion), or the psychological drivers (perfectionism and hyper-responsibility). You may not be told that the adrenals and thyroid are all commonly malfunctioning and need support or the links with heavy metals such as dental amalgam2. These are all now known to be highly correlated with this condition.

Modern medicine relies on the doctrine of the mind and the body being separate entities; doctors treat the body and psychiatrists the mind. But they are not  separate; they are intimately linked. What you think affects your body in very direct ways3, it changes your heart rate, your digestion, metabolism and immunity. What you do with your life also affects your spirit – if you are stuck in a job or relationship that doesn’t inspire you these have very direct effects on your wellbeing. We are complex mindbody organisms whose bodies store our subconcious beliefs4,5 and the only way to unlock these and other chronic conditions is to look at mind, body and spirit which is usually ignored or denigrated by most health professionals.

There is an alternative and it is Mindbody medicine which involves taking responsibility for your health and using natural methods of diet, detoxification and emotional cleansing to heal.  We cannot treat the whole person unless we look at the unconscious emotional drivers of pain. I have trained extensively in this and have become a specialist in Chronic Fatigue-Related Syndromes and now as a specialist Chrysalis Effect Practitioner.

The Chrysalis Effect Online Recovery Programme

mecfsrecoverpage

Until I came across the Chrysalis Effect programme I had no idea there was an online holistic programme for recovery, written by people who have recovered themselves. It is a 9 month programme with audio/video content, expert interviews, exercises and an online forum for fellow recoverers. You are no longer alone but in a community of like-minded people whose aim is recovery not ‘managing the disease’ or focussing on a miracle ‘cure’. It has a free, no-obligation one month trial. Sign up now through the link www.mefcsrecovery.co.uk.

As a fully-qualified Chrysalis Effect Practitioner I support you every step of the way through the programme. I recommend monthly coaching sessions to support you, with a series of affordable packages to suit most budgets. We recommend monthly support as, having the programme individually tailored to you increases the speed of recovery and gets better results. However, this is your choice.

I also offer a tailored programme of holistic treatments (pain release through Reiki, Clinical MassageEMDR/ EFT (for releasing trauma) and Transformation hypnotherapy6) which you can choose to add to the basic programme to speed your healing and recovery. This is a team-based approach where I will refer you to one of my colleagues if you need nutritional therapy for instance. So, there is no longer any need to ‘practitioner hop’ from one to another seeking answers.  See my About page for details of the clinics I work from and contact me for an appointment – remember I offer a free no-obligation phone call to discuss your issues and whether I’m the right therapist for you.

The Eight Elements of Freedom

8elementswheelTogether, we focus on the 8 crucial factors in health and wellbeing based on the wellbeing wheel (shown on left) . This is a powerful tool for helping you to identify and change areas of your life that are not working so well for you, whether it be in your career, your relationships or your wellbeing. If you are holding subconscious beliefs that subtly undermine your goals, you will find no amount of willpower will allow you to achieve them (maybe those of you you have dieted know what I mean here!). You will only ever bounce around from one self-help book/therapist to another without really challenging yourself or getting beyond your comfort zone. You will rationalise that ‘it’s not the right time’, ‘this process doesn’t work’, ‘I’ll do it when I have the right job/relationship/more time’, etc, etc. This is you ego rationalising what is fundamentally an emotional choice. It wants to make your procrastination seem reasonable and usually it succeeds. I know I’ve been there!

But if you really want to fundamentally change your life or health then we need to break through this self-imposed barrier, to find your core beliefs. I work with you to identify these using my intuitive coaching skills and psychological understanding and then we challenge them. This is a life-changing process of full commitment to change. By focussing on where you need to improve in the wheel we can identify and chart your progress. Everyone has things they do well and others that they find hard. Have a go at scoring yourself here – 10 is something you do excellently – no need of improvement. 1 is very poor. See where your areas of imbalance are.. Imagine trying to drive round with that wheel – not very balanced is it?

What is Wellbeing Coaching?

It is all about state change. Moving you out of where you are and finding out where you want to be – how do you want to feel/see/hear/think?

Once we know what it is you need to change in your life, my job is to work with you to close that gap between where you are and where you’d like to be.

So, I ask that you have trust in me to help move you forward, never forgetting you are in the driver’s seat. I’ve done it myself and now I’ve helped many others move from a position of ‘stuckness’ to one of self-empowerment. It’s not for the faint-hearted but the rewards are immense.

Relationship and Financial Coaching

I also focus on holistic relationship and financial coaching which doesn’t seek to apply blame but looks for person-centred solutions to your issues (unlike counselling I don’t advise or direct).

Relationships often take us out of our comfort zone and trigger deeply held beliefs and memories of previous experiences which we can then project onto the current experience – Eckhardt Tolle1 refers to triggering our ‘pain bodies’. We need to know what the pain is that we carry and what our beliefs and values are before we can make changes. We need to stop ‘needing to be right and practice being present’ – this is hard when you are emotionally involved but we can turn it around if we ask some fundamental questions of ourselves when we make such statements as ‘I need your love’2.

Did you know your relationship to money is an emotional one? Take the money personality quiz (see downloads) and then ask me about your type and how to make the best of it.

Wellbeing for CFS – the Chrysalis Effect

Coaching is especially important in long term chronic illness such as chronic fatigue or back pain as these are mindbody diseases. We are complex beings with mind and body interlinked. What we think affects our health in the same way as what we eat. There is no distinction. If we truly believe we are healing the body follows that belief. So how do we release the body from these debilitating illnesses?

If I could wave a magic wand I would do it but the great news is the best way I know that works is if we work together using the Chrysalis Effect online programme with coaching support. Developed by twp former sufferers who have recovered from CFS/ME themselves this is the most comprehensive wellness recovery programme I know of. You work at home on the fortnightly sessions and then we work together once a month to tailor it to you and your specific needs which means it’s not a one size fits all solution but a bespoke programme which aims to help you tackle those areas in your life that are not working as well as they should, whether that be your work, relationships, exercise or nutrition, etc. In addition having a monthly session keeps you motivated and allows me to answer any questions you may have. It truly is a life-changing programme which doesn’t just get you back to ‘normal’ but allows you to create the life you’ve always wanted that sustains and nourishes you. See www.mecfsrecovery.co.uk for details and signup.

1 Eckhardt Tolle: The Power of Now

2. Byron Katy; I Need your Love

†Initial consult is 1.5 hours and includes an individualised assessment of where you are in the 6 Phases of recovery as well as mapping your priorities for the 8 Elements of Freedom

*Subsequent sessions are an hour @ £125 each. Easy payment terms are available. See my package of care for details.

All things start with small steps. Your journey to health is one of them.

1 The Hidden Psychology of Pain: The Use of Understanding to Heal Chronic Pain by Dr. James Alexander

2 The Natural Recovery Programme by Dr Alison Adams

3 The Molecules of Emotion by Candace Pert

4 Your Body speaks your Mind by Deb Shapiro

5 The Mindbody Prescription by Dr John Sarno

6 The 7-step Transformation process is a specially developed programme for releasing the pain and fatigue of Chronic Fatigue Related Syndromes