Under the table – what’s afoot?

Next time you’re waiting in a coffee shop to meet a friend, instead of pulling out your mobile or reaching for a well-thumbed magazine, take a moment to scan the room and observe what people are doing with their feet under the table.

This is a fascinating exercise in how to pick the most stressed person in the room – and ultimately, how to watch what we do with our own body. Read more


How are you coping?

Living as we are in what is frequently referred to as the age of anxiety, it’s little wonder that when meeting new clients, their individual stories mirror those of today, those of before or those who come after.

Most commonly we hear of discomforts such as trembling, ‘butterflies’, overwhelm, apprehension and panic. Living, for a great many people feels as if they are constantly on the edge of some kind of catastrophe where the ever present ‘emergency’ reaction is accompanied by frustration, sadness, depressive feelings and regular tears. A constant urge to be coping ‘better’ is dominant. Read more


Anxiety bytes #3

It is well over thirty years since I mastered anxiety and began to know what life was like without the constant presence of unsettling and sometimes terrifying symptoms, severely limiting and distressing my life.

When I took courage and told my success story all those years ago, I also emphasised that the key to my deliverance from the clutches of anxiety was a particular concept of meditation.  In this blog I want to re-emphasise that the elements of this meditative concept involve mental rest – the unique teaching of Ainslie Meares M.D.   This is a stress relief therapy now recognized as SMT® and one that I have authentically adhered to for many years within my work at the SMT Centre in Melbourne.

Read more


More Anxiety Bytes

At its peak, anxiety produces symptoms that become apparent as an awareness of dis-ease.  Traces of physical and mental unrest emerge, feelings first noticeable in physical exhaustion and perhaps erratic conduct.  Sensing this, the mind becomes distressed, feeling strained and drained.  If these disturbances are not addressed in a satisfactory way, the slippery slope to psychosomatic illness is not too far away.  For some people that state of being converts to a range of illnesses such as asthma, eczema, stomach problems or high blood pressure. Read more


Anxiety Bytes

Over many years my signature book, In Stillness Conquer Fear, has supported the recovery of many thousands of anxious people.

If you are seeking anxiety relief and haven’t previously read my story, here are a few bytes from the book to offer encouragement and a starting point for change: Read more


A few thoughts for the Christmas Season

In the past month the world has been shattered by the tragedy of hatred, anger, bitterness, frustration and human pain.

And now, the month of December, heralds the season of Christmas, a season of celebration which, in contrast, should be all about the real message of Love.

In our Western world December brings with it the onset of decorations, glitter, Santa, presents, carols, parties, food and drink in anticipation of a celebration … but what are we all celebrating?

Read more


Simple Things

On a recent day ‘off’ I happened to have one whole hour, wholly to myself. At 2pm on this sunshiny afternoon I was out of town with a commitment to meet someone at 3pm  There were no other obligations, no dog to walk (my morning walk having already taken place), or pressing requirements for the fridge or even otherwise interesting diversions.  And having already meditated generously for the day, here was an hour, stretching before me to use – or not use – as I wished.

An hour of 60 minutes’ time can seem lengthy – but when filled with the hustle and bustle of ordinary life, an hour is very little time. On that sunny afternoon I was struck by the impulse and temptation to do something productive – an impulse that almost caused me a moment of confusion! Read more


Personal peace for world peace

How challenging it is to be confronted with the news each day and to witness so many levels of violence occurring.

Our new Prime Minister has taken up the cause against domestic violence.  This is admirable and a grand step in the right direction.  But personally I believe that we are living in times where violence readily expressed, exists not only within families, but across the scope society.

Unfortunately, all people are capable of violent behaviour when true control is absent and when reaction takes the place of considered response. Read more


How much does your mind matter?

Do we ever stop to think about what we’re thinking?  Are the thoughts that we’re thinking relevant, useful, productive, reactive, peaceful or distressing?  Even more importantly, do we stop to think that we might be thinking too much?

In a gorgeous conversation with my eldest granddaughter recently we began to dissect the mystery of that amazing treasure contained within the brain – our mind!

We pondered that ethereal gift: is ‘mind’ our spirit?  Is mind everlasting?  Is mind the product of our physiology – or the other way around?  Are we, in fact, our mind?  And what would we do without our mind – for mind in itself, perhaps, is life-giving.  Our mind is the receptacle of our entire life experience, the keeper of our secrets, thoughts, wishes, hopes and dreams.  Our mind can contribute to conversation and discussion … the mind is our communicator and our communication.  Read more


Courtesy, discipline and respect

In our busy new world have we forgotten three small words?

At a time when ‘enquiries’, ‘task forces’ and Royal Commissions proliferate, I’d like to begin improving all our many societal issues by doing it slightly differently. While all those are worthy of attention, I can’t help wondering whether their complex ponderings and costly outcomes are rather like having new furniture delivered before we’ve established the family or even completed the building construction. We’re not going to fix the environment, or integrate indigenous people, or cut greenhouse gas, or fuel emissions, or save water, or address the problem of family violence or criminal activities or even modify serious health issues until we retrieve a community that upholds societal values.

Rather than wasting time on gastronomical extravaganzas or multitudinous movies to watch, could we not encourage three ideals to lift our collective game: chill out with some courtesy, dive into a little discipline and saturate ourselves in the sensation of respect – and maybe a little kindness for ourselves and for others. Read more