Tag Archives: Feldenkrais® Method

Communication retraining the brain

In Cultivating Awareness foundational for experiential learning one will read about the similarities and differences between Renee’s educational programs and a Mindfulness Mediation Practice.

The focus of this article is on cultivating awareness to retrain the brain and balance used of left and right sides of the brain that Renee encourages her students to learn in the process of becoming self-directed and connected to what and how they are speaking.

The importance of a particular practice of identifying types of  thoughts became relevant when a student came back to class and shared their life changing self-awareness experience.  They discovered that they compare themselves and others while making critical moral judgments based upon their filter of jealousy. By slowing down to observe these patterns, this recognition can shift and transform their experience. The types of thoughts we address are in the following illustration.

In this diagram a maze is in the area of the fore-brain that depicts the essence of figuring it out and hitting walls until one finds their way forward. This can be complex and draining process.

In the following diagram a larger spiral leading directly into the center point is shown in the fore-brain area that demonstrates the ease in which cultivated awareness through communication can mirror.  This cultivation is not unlike the growing ability to focus ones attention as they would in a sitting mediation.  It is a different focus, pattern and foundation that one would practice that would include more of ones whole functional ability than the limiting thought process shown in the above diagram.

 Go back to – Cultivating Awareness foundational for retraining the brain


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Encouraging others to become self-directed, improve abilities to notice and discover new connections, refine self-use, and integrate new and practical skills is life enriching for this teacher and students.

Copyright 2014 – 2019 Renee Lindstrom, GCFP,
Feldenkrais® Practitioner since 2007, Communication & Empathy Coach since 2004, Art of Placement  since 2000

 

 

Cultivating Awareness foundational for retraining the brain

Each of the these experiential learning opportunities share the same objectives of  cultivating awareness and focusing attention.

Another thing in common they have is that they are inclusive of the four aspects of the human condition and function:  mental, emotional, physical and belief systems.  These components are not isolated as separate functions as in other wellness styles.  In each of these functional events there is an education aspect that includes a mindful pattern cultivating expanded focus.

Here is a way of cultivating awareness through a pattern one may be familiar with:

Mindfulness Meditation

Change through Cultivating Awareness
  • 3 Steps to Mindful Meditation to Cultivate Awareness

Step #1 – Begins with a foundation

Mat, Cushion, Posture

Step #2 – Then a focus point

Breath

#3 – Followed by a pattern

Observe your thoughts & environment while following your breath

Improving the ability to notice, discover new connections, refine self-use, and integrate your new skills through the experiential learning techniques anyone can integrate the skills and action steps that creates a ‘being in the moment experience‘ like in a dedicated  meditative practice.

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First communication steps for retraining the brain


Book an appointment with Renee

Learn more about Renee’s  educational programs, workshops and events

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Encouraging others to become self-directed, improve abilities to notice and discover new connections, refine self-use, and integrate new and practical skills is life enriching for this teacher and students.

Copyright 2014 – 2019 Renee Lindstrom, GCFP,
Feldenkrais® Practitioner since 2007, Communication & Empathy Coach since 2004, Art of Placement  since 2000

Calming Fright, Flight, Fight reactions through movement techniques

by Renee Lindstrom, GCFP

Mindfulness through Movement

Observing people’s posture in standing and walking for the past 10 years has been educational.  I have begun to notice subtle posture nuances that clearly indicates ones state of mind and their physical and emotional well-being.  The most common condition I am observing in people is a separation between what one thinks and a connection to physical movement.

Generally I notice ones focus of attention is on interpretation of what is happening versus actual experience.  For me this means having a fixed perspective, opinion or belief.  If a physical ailment surfaces there is a fixed belief to go and have someone fix it or use tools to make physical movement easier.  Tools like a cane, walker, scooter, special chair and bed.    What’s missing is an easier possibility!  This is the exploration of how to move differently.  I am not referring to practices such as yoga, therapy, stretching or exercising as the difference is that you are following a limited structured pattern.  I am referring to increasing awareness of feeling how you move in the process of moving.  This includes increasing your ability to focus your attention on how each bone  and joint movement can be sensed.

When mobility increases I notice that there is an increase in coping.  The mask of fear, anger, pain and anxiety is replaced with a peaceful and open appearance.

Recently I wrote about settling the fight, flight, fright experiences of the Hippocampus from the perspective of communication.  I have noticed that another more effective way to settle these reactions has been through the application of Feldenkrais® Movement.

Working with three ways to settle ones flight, fight and fright reactions I find the application of Feldenkrais Movements the quickest and most effective for shifting and integrating change.  It engages more immediate functional connection between ones physical, mental and emotional states of being.  Many times I have experienced someone in a series of 6 classes for balance where after the first or second class someone has given up their cane.  They describe that they are less fearful to stand and support themselves.

This year a trend has been the lack of  connection to feeling one’s legs.  I had to purposely show  someone that they dragged a leg behind them when there wasn’t any physical reason for this.  It turned out this leg had been broken years before and this person forgot how to use this leg.  This resulted in collapsing. When life became too difficult to enjoy they requested an operation, however there wasn’t anything to operate on!

Recently I encouraged someone to consciously shift weight purposely into one of their legs and their reaction was to say that this leg couldn’t support them.  I asked them how they had walked all these years and suggested that this leg must actually be supporting them.  We spent a few minutes practicing shifting weight from foot to foot and their fear was tangible.  A short week later the leg that was not trusted appeared stronger and I smile as there was no hesitation in using this leg.  The fright, flight and fight reactions were not visible!

What is exciting as a practitioner giving guidance to explore patterns of movement is that there it bypasses the stories in ones mind and focuses them on discovering their movement process.  It teaches them ways to feel the movement.     It increases present awareness (being in the moment).

To other ways for calming ones state of flight, fright and fight can be through increased understanding of your emotional and intellectual functions and your environment.

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Renee Lindstrom, GCFP,
Feldenkrais® Practitioner since 2007, Communication,  Empathy,  Values Coach since 2004, Art of Placement  since 2000, Labyrinths of Victoria since 2012, #yyj Peace Week Grassroots Calendar Founder, Vice-Chair of World Children’s Summit on Peace & Nature in 2015

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Happy Feet: What folk remedies do you use for corns on your feet?

by Renee Lindstrom, GCFP

toes

I have become all to familiar with how corns can disturb a person’s walking pattern.  If not treated properly one corn can destroy it!  Have you ever felt a constant pain in one spot as you did something as simply as stand or walk?  A corn can cause a person to try and not put pressure on that one spot thereby changing how they balance their own weight, stand and walk!

Besides helping those suffering from corns to re-learning how to improve their gait I have been researching on-line for home remedies to soften and reduce these culprits that can eventually lead to canes.  I  have come across this home remedy one more than once.  Have you tried it?

Toes 1

Softening corns using Crushed Aspirins and Lemon Juice 

You will need:

  • 5 Aspirins crushed
  • 1/2 – 1 teaspoon of Lemon Juice
  • Water
  • Plastic for a wrap
  • heated damp towel

Mix the crushed aspirin and lemon juice together first.  Add only enough water if needed remembering to make the ingredients a paste that is thick enough to apply to your corn and have it stick.

Use your fingers or butter knife to apply the paste to the corn and wrap your foot with plastic wrap or bag.  Take your warm damp towel and wrap your foot over the plastic. Let sit for 15 minutes.

Once you remove the foot wrappings remove the dried past and gentle scrub with a rough piece of lava or pumice stone.

Take time to notice how the corn feels to the touch now after your home treatment. Check in to observe how it has changed.  For example:  Is it any softer?  

Each time you put pressure on this area it is rubbing against something so the corn will be building a layer of tissue to protect this spot.  To get ahead of it you will want to repeat this treatment as many times as you can during the week.  Beside the poultice and more obvious concerns like tight shoes, you may wish to investigate your walking gait and how you balance your body weight.  The feedback I am getting from teaching Feldenkrais® to those suffering from poor balance and walking gait has been,  “It has never been explained like this by anyone!” this may be a learning method worth your while to investigate!

Feldenkrais Method® of Somatic Movement Education

Recent Comment:  Thank you for the amazing session which helped me to better understand the pain and anxiety issues I’ve been dealing with. Very insightful experience. I felt way more relaxed Friday evening and I’m monitoring myself to help ensure I’m releasing tension and breathing properly. Am impressed by it and by your skills. D

Traditional uses and properties of herbs are for educational purposes only.  This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.  Every attempt has been made for accuracy, but none is guaranteed. Any serious health concerns or if you are pregnant, you should always check with your health care practitioner before self-administering herbs.

 

 

Re-attaching Heads in Jaw Release Level 2

Re-attaching Head to Whole Movement

Triangle of Head, Shoulders & Arms by Renee LIndstromFigure 1 – Triangles of Head, Neck, Shoulders, Arms & Hands

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Level two Of Jaw Release begins immediately on floor mats with a guided check-in to connect and focus on personal sensing.   In re-attaching ones head to core movements the Jaw Release Awareness through Movement® lessons are designed to draw ones attention to the rotation triangles of  the head, arms and shoulders.  It starts with the farthest point from the body – ones hands!  Quite interesting to think about how one’s hands are connected to one’s jaw.  In particular when during one’s lifetime the focus is on isolating ones mouth with attention only on the placement of  teeth!

This would be a great workshops for your Dentist office employees!

Below is a description to the  three parts to the workshop:   Re-attaching Head for Whole Movement in Jaw Release.

  • First Movement Focus in Re-attaching Head for Jaw Release

Attention is first drawn to the movement in ones extremities,  the farthest parts from the  body core.  It begins with the joints in one’s thumb and fingers, before moving closer inward to ones shoulder and spine to sense and notice movement in ones palms, hands, wrists, elbows and shoulders.fingers-to-thumb by Renee Lindstrom

Figure 2 – Thumb and Finger Tips Together

  • Second Movement Focus in Re-attaching Head for Jaw Release

Movement then shifts into ones shoulders, ribs , spine, neck and head beginning with sensing and noticing regular up and down motions of ones breathing pattern.   The integration of further patterns creates ease in rolling ones head left and right that includes a short introduction to synchronizing movements in rolling ones head forward and back in time with ones pelvis.body-bending-rotation by Renee Lindstrom

Figure 3 – Body Bending & Rotation

  • Third Movement Focus in Re-attaching Head for Jaw Release

The first two parts of the Jaw Release Workshop is designed to increase one’s sensing skills so  that in the third part the movement patterns one begins to sense the differences within ones mouth and how the jaw  and neck moves in time with one’s tongue!Jaw & Tongue by Renee Lindstrom

Figure 4 – Tongue & Jaw Movements in Rotation

This program is suitable for all ages in all situations.  These movement patterns can be restorative or for learning to improve your functions.  Can be taken into the office  and schools for increasing brain function and reducing distractions.  It is the natural next step to mindfulness training however, it is based on the real function of one’s senses so opens a new one to a new experience.  An experience of being present in action; walking, talking, thinking, being!

Excellent for improving ones abilities and experiences such as for those chronic sufferers of TMJ or to:

  • reduce neck, jaw, shoulder pain
  • neck and shoulder release
  • clear nasal passages and open air ways
  • reduce fear
  • reduce anxiety
  • increase whole movement connection
  • increase breathing
  • increase creativity
  • increase brain function
  • improve fine motor skills
  • breathe easier
  • improve speech & sound

Interested in becoming more fully present in how you walk and act in your day-to-day activities.  Consider Feldenkrais® as it is the next level to your mindfulness or yoga training to become more fully aware of your spontaneous movement patterns versus holding  a pattern.

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Renee Lindstrom, GCFP,
Jaw Release Program since 2007, Authored  Achieving your Goals  31 Day Program, Sleep Sweet Sleep, Kid’s Peace Bus Calendar of Values  Educational Program & InTouch with Your Values Self-Actualization Program.  Feldenkrais® Practitioner since 2007, Communication & Empathy Coach since 2004, Art of Placement  since 2000, Labyrinths of Victoria since 2012, #yyj Peace Week Grassroots Calendar Founder, Vice-Chair of World Children’s Summit on Peace & Nature in 2015

The Mask

 

The Mask
tragicmask

 

 

Always a mask

Held in the slim hand whitely

Always she had a mask before her face —

 

Truly the wrist

Holding it lightly

Fitted the task:

Sometimes however

Was there a shiver,

fingertip quiver,

Ever so slightly —

Holding the mask?

 

For years and years and years I wondered

But dared not ask

And then —

I blundered,

Looked behind the mask,

To find

Nothing —

She had no face.

 

She had become

Merely a hand

Holding a mask

With grace.

Author unknown


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Renee Lindstrom, GCFP,
Feldenkrais® Practitioner since 2007, Value-Based Communication & Empathy Coach since 2004, Art of Placement  since 2000, Founder of Greater Victoria Peace & Intercultural Celebrations since 2010 & Greater Victoria Labyrinths since 2012, #yyj Peace Week Calendar Founder – 2014 & 2015

Physical Attributes of Chronic Fear & Anxiety

There have been opportunities to explore the long-term physical, mental and emotional effects of long-term fear and anxiety as a Feldenkrais® Practitioner and Life Coach .  Here are some examples of the results that have been presented.  Keep in mind that these results are based upon cases where these conditions have evolved slowly over time without any awareness.  The slow development of physical change results from lack of attention on body awareness, therefore,  the shift in movement behaviors generally they are not noticed.   

Flight

Dominate flight reactions tend to be the loss of strength physically, mentally or emotionally.    Two physical responses to panic; collapsing,  going limp or running away.  Chronic fear and anxiety can be noticeable in  general appearance and in social behaviors.   A common quality is over achievement, overdoing it whether hold strong, being strong or double jointed and limber. There is a disconnection from body awareness. Generally the body is not highly regarded, taken care of or appreciated.    

These following three reactions have shown up in cases of without a balanced approach to developing all aspects of well-being.  

1.  A  dominant focus of attention on a spiritual movement practice.  The physical movement of the body structure has presented with lack of strength and limited inner body awareness.  The core force of inner physical strength has been replaced with a limp disconnected reaction.

2.  A dominant focus of attention on a goal or achievement.  The body is strong with a lack of connection to the finer qualities in mobility.  The body is used to excel  the focus is on strategies to get results versus developing whole and spontaneous movement.

3.  A dominant focus on fear and creating safety.  This has shown up as permanent state without  connection to ones senses in the present moment.  The only connection to a felt body sense is a source of discomfort and pain.  It is regarded as the enemy and when explored the pain is a memory and not necessarily current.  

In relationships dominant flight fear/anxiety reactors will generally lack the qualities of self-empathy and empathy for others.  They are self-focused and intent on creating safety by whatever strategies that have been learned.  The need is for survival and it is primal.  This Read more….

Freeze

1.  Freezing presents itself by the lack of spontaneous moving parts in breathing and posture.  There is a habit of moving the body in a locked posture with the  inability to move different body parts separately.  An example of this locking of the head in a forward posture.  Turning to the left and right and become a full body movement as the pain of locking ones head creates a habit.

2.  Tremors start with long-term freezing.  The muscles are in a state of permanent contraction or extension.  Over time with the loss of the ability to extend, contract and relax in a flow of movement it has resulted in slowing movement and  shaking.

3. Slowing down will eventual result in  rigidity setting in as the posture of freezing locks in and becomes a habit.  It presents as a complete frozen state that includes facial expression.  This may eventually extend to drooping eyes, drooling and lack of mental/cognitive clarity as the physical effort to function becomes too exhausting.

In relationships most dominant freeze fear/anxiety reactors will be considerate of others and not want to hurt anyone’s feelings.  Their first reaction may be surprise, shock and horror at what they are witnessing, hearing, or experiencing. In relationships things will generally be taken personally and turned inward without attempts to stand up for themselves immediately.  Time is needed to process and the moment for responding has past leaving unresolved interactions and experienced as passive.  Read more…….

Fight

1.  A dominant focus on control.  Resistant to experiencing support that is not calculated and controlled.  Fear is subtle and deeply rooted therefore, movement is isolated and not a spontaneous flow.  Somatic learning is blocked by the filter of control.  Results in increased physical pain further reducing movement.

2. A dominant focus on seeking answers yet unable to integrate movement experience to form new habits.  The need to know has replaced sensual awareness therefore unable to recognize and value change.  When there is a response of  less tension and increased relaxation it cannot be fully absorbed and appreciated due to distractions of trying to understand it.    Will objectify versus notice their experience.   Therefore will adjust posture according to thinking versus somatic experiencing.

3.  A dominant focus on working hard and using brute strength.  Strength will be a reactive posture that will lead to lack of using fine motor skills resulting in being clumsy, tense and awkward.

In relationships the dominant fight responded will react with right and wrong thinking.  Therefore others are the enemies and the roots of disconnect.  This habitual response will lack the skill to include others perspectives and beliefs as they believe they have the answer.  Read more………

The intent of this article is in the context of how  communication and movement can support the decrease of anxiety, stress & fear. Values & Empathy integration in communication for transforming disconnection into connection and movement for calming one’s nervous system.

Read more on:

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Feldenkrias Movement Benefits 

Read more on right & left side of brain reactions to stress

 

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Renee Lindstrom, GCFP,
Feldenkrais® Practitioner since 2007, Communication,  Empathy,  Values Coach since 2004, Art of Placement  since 2000, Labyrinths of Victoria since 2012, #yyj Peace Week Grassroots Calendar Founder

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