Healing From The Inside Out
Inspiration, Tools and Techniques for Living a Joyful Life, Now
In Today's Newsletter:
- The High Cost of Stress.
- Article: Wor(ry) and Peace: Which One do you choose?
- Special Offer!First 10 People to call (or email) me, receive 2 EFT-Coaching (Skype) Sessions for the price of ONE.
Call now! 707-326-5566.
- EFT/Tapping Tips instructional videos now posted on FaceBook: Sign on for daily updated videos at
Benjamin Schwarcz, MFT - Tapping Tips Videos and More on FaceBook.
- The Holographic Universe: Life is But a Dream
- The Dangers of Antidepressants.
- Book Review and Video Interviews: Anatomy of an Epidemic by Robert Whitaker, and Psychiatrists find an alternative to medication that actually works: EmPower Plus.
- Bipolar Recovery Coaching and Alternative Bipolar Treatments (decreased rates for January 2011).
- Complimentary 15-minute guided mindfulness meditation available for immediate download,(see the gold buttons below).
- Meditation Tips: Avoiding Avoidance - the Biggest Obstacle to Meditation progress.
- My Program for Natural Treatment of Depression:
Tapping Into Joy: Meridian Tapping and Mindfulness for Depression. This 96-Page eBook covers a wide range of issues and root causes of depression and shows you how to awaken to your natural state of peace and happiness. Program includes 2.5 hours of Audio Book recording, and a One-hour guided meditation.
Tapping Into Joy: Meridian Tapping and Mindfulness for Depression -
Stress and Well-Being
Stress - It is estimated that 80-90% of all doctor visits are actually due to stress-related symptoms and conditions. Many of these symptoms and illnesses are literally caused by stress, while many others are worsened greatly by stress.
Stress is the chronic involuntary fight-or-flight response of our physiology, working overtime, even when there is no credible threat to our immediate safety. The fight or flight reaction is fine for pumping up our adrenaline when a lion is about to attack you...but when the body is in a constant state of stress, it exhausts our system, both body and mind, and has a very negative impact on our health, our minds, and our ability to function.
Some of the many issues created by stress:
- Chronic Pain
- Back, shoulder and neck tension or pain
- Gastrointestinal problems - Cholitis, Irritable Bowel Syndrome, Constipation, Acid Reflux, etc.
- Sexual Dysfunction, Erectile Dysfunction, Decreased Libido
- High Blood Pressure
- Decreased Concentration
- Memory Problems
- Sleep Disorders
- Weight Gain, Compulsive Eating
- Irritability or Agitation
- Work performance problems
- Relationship Problems
- Habitual Worrying
- Addictions (drugs, alcohol, smoking, pornography, shopping, etc.)
- Dissociative Symptoms, eyesight problems, poor coordination, increased accidents and injuries.
- Autoimmune disorders
....and the list goes on and on.
Very often, when I suggest to people the idea of "thinking less" or learning to be "still" or "in-the-moment," they say: "WHAT'S THAT??"
No matter how productive, brilliant, intellectual, capable, powerful or creative you might be -- if you can't let go of your thoughts, if you can't relax, if you can't drop down into the present-moment awareness and FEEL the peace of being still, and be content in the Here-and-Now... then you aren't living! You're living in your head and in the future, and you will never enjoy the fruits of your labor. If you lost your job, or you retired; or if there was a massive black-out and you couldn't plug-in; or if you were forced (god-forbid) to take a day off - or even a little vacation, with no books, no computer, no media, no entertainment - just quiet time on planet earth - would that be heaven - or would it be hell for you?
If we were not experiencing so much stress on a regular basis, we would experience:
- Greater Joy
- Peace of Mind
- Much better physical health
- Much less physical pain
- Easier, more satisfying relationships
- More efficient use of time - producing more, with less effort
- Better Concentration, more patience, and clarity of mind.
- A much stronger sense of purpose and trust in our intuition
- Trust in our instincts, rather than being filled with self-doubt, inner conflict, ambivalence and fear.
- More Love, Connection, and Acceptance of ourselves and others.
- Focusing on Solutions and Ideas, rather than on Problems and the things that are lacking.
Wor(ry) and Peace.
Which one leads you to your desired destination?
We always have a choice of attitude. We don't have much choice in anything else, even if we think that we do. Some individuals have the rare good fortune to never worry or stress about anything. And for them, most of the time, life seems to turn out in their favor. When it doesn't they just take it in stride, and confidently wait for the expected turn around, which always comes before long. (If this isn't your way, then chances are you either envy such people, or find yourself extremely annoyed with them.)
But most of us have the worrying habit – to one extent or another. It is a learned habit, mastered through years of careful study – observing, imitating and patterning ourselves after those who influenced our development the most – usually our parents. Much of this learning is absorbed through repetitive exposure to the worrying role model – and it rubbed off on us without us even noticing.
You might not even question it. Perhaps you even justify your worrying habit, by convincing yourself that this worry must have some useful facility – that maybe it's keeping you safe or “realistic” or that it's your mind thinking critically about this or that important piece of business. Or you might fiercely defend your right to worry and stand firmly behind your belief that worry is what “realists” do, while those who are unrealistic, “dreamers,” are the ones who wander through life, seemingly oblivious to the seriousness of things. Does anyone hear the echo of a parent's voice: “get your head out of the clouds. You're living in a fantasy land.”
Many of us grew up with this message:
“To worry is to be prudent, safe, responsible and realistic; and those that aren't worried, simply aren't paying attention to reality.”
What a cynical and foreboding belief to hold!
You've probably heard this famous quote:
“Whether you believe you can, or you believe you can't, you're right.”
Worry proves it's own worth in the mind of the worrier. And peace proves it's worth to one who is at peace. The important question is “Which one feels better, and which would you choose to feel?”
So, when times are hard, and you want something that you don't have, and life is stressful and scary and uncertain – when it seems so natural to worry – Beware! Your worrying habit is the final blow that will destroy your power and rob you of so many opportunities, so many possibilities, and blessings that could otherwise come your way – that if you really could see this – you would cease your worrying instantly. Beware the habit of falsely concluding that there is good reason to worry, and that when you finally get the thing you want or need (if you get it at all), only THEN will you be able to stop worrying. This is a mental trap. It is not logical, and it is not the final truth.
Worry begets more worry, destroys confidence, makes you feel small and powerless, crushes your self-esteem, brings feelings of shame, unworthiness, resentment, guilt and inadequacy. Can anyone really justify the value of worrying?
When life is closing in on you, and fear and desperation descend upon your mind, if there is only one thing you can remember, it should be this: focusing inward and quieting your mind will be infinitely more beneficial in shifting your circumstances, your feelings, and your whole reality, then focusing outward and trying to change your surroundings. When the mind is at peace, anything is possible. When the mind is conflicted, fearful and stressed, the world becomes a dark and fearful place.
"When desires trouble the mind, always remind yourself of this truth: 'When ecstasy comes, everything goes."
The Holographic Universe
...if we dare to place our complete attention on the Present Moment Awareness - if we are crazy enough to risk it - we will in fact, create more Present Moment. Because that's what we're focusing on. The only Real "Reality" exists right Here and Now. And it's infinite, and eternal - the Now... the only way to begin to experience the majesty of the moment, is to put your attention there and keep it there - instead of forever chasing shadows and an anticipated future that hasn't happened yet.
[read the full article at: http://www.alternativedepressiontherapy.com/holographic-universe.html]
Before Starting an Antidepressant Medication, know the real facts: The Dangers of Antidepressants.
I regularly see and here about people who have fallen victim to the adverse effects of antidepressants and other drugs.
The story usually goes like this:
A usually energetic, creative, successful, intelligent adult, or teenager, encounters some difficulties or a traumatic event, and becomes anxious or depressed.
They go to their doctor for help.
Doctor says they have depression and gives them an antidepressant (no recommendation for therapy..."talking" about problems)
Their energy and mood begin to become elevated - for some, within weeks, for others within the first day.
Doctor says, "It's just the placebo affect -- that drug takes at least 4-6 weeks to work. Just keep taking it."
Patient becomes more restless, agitated, anxious, sleepless or even delusional or manic. Once they've reached a crisis point they end up in another doctor's office, or in the Emergency Room, and the new doctor says:
"Oh my, you have Bipolar Disorder. This is the wrong medication for you. You had an underlying vulnerability and this medication triggered your symptoms...."
New doctor now puts patient on 3 or 4 other drugs - an antianxiety, a mood stabilizer, an antipsychotic, and a sleep medication for their chronic illness, for which there is no "cure."
Patient now has anxiety, depression, mood swings, sleep problems, and all the side effects of the new meds: weight gain, cholesterol and metabolism changes, foggy head, tremors and so on.
Doctor continually adjusts and increases medication to get "the right cocktail" while patient's health, personality and life become increasingly battered. Self-esteem drops. Social life suffers. And for many, disability follows.
This is unfortunately a very common story.
Suspected for years by many, known secretly for years by researchers, drug companies and psychiatrists, and something I've seen first hand time and time again -- Antidepressants are not only ineffective for most people, but can trigger Mania and set up people for life long Bipolar Disorder - even after the antidepressant is discontinued.
Learn more about iatrogenic (medically caused) illness.
“Why are so many more people disabled by mental illness than ever before? Why are those so diagnosed dying 10-25 years earlier than others? In Anatomy of an Epidemic investigative reporter Robert Whitaker cuts through flawed science, greed and outright lies to reveal that the drugs hailed as the cure for mental disorders instead worsen them over the long term. But Whitaker’s investigation also offers hope for the future: solid science backs nature’s way of healing our mental ills through time and human relationships. Whitaker tenderly interviews children and adults who bear witness to the ravages of mental illness, and testify to their newly found “aliveness” when freed from the prison of mind-numbing drugs.”
—Daniel Dorman, M.D., Clinical Assistant Professor of Psychiatry, UCLA School of Medicine and author of Dante’s Cure: A Journey Out of Madness
“This is the most alarming book I’ve read in years. The approach is neither polemical nor ideologically slanted. Relying on medical evidence and historical documentation, Whitaker builds his case like a prosecuting attorney.”
—Carl Elliott, M.D., Ph.D., Professor, Center for Bioethics, University of Minnesota and author of Better than Well: American Medicine Meets the American Dream
Listen to Dr Joseph Mercola's Interview with author and medical journalist, Robert Whitaker
Bipolar Recovery Coaching and Alternative Bipolar Treatments
Bipolar Recovery Coaching is an individualized program to assist in your recovery from the devastating symptoms of Bipolar Illness.
"Before starting treatment with Ben, I was at my wits end. My life was disintegrating, and I was very close to driving away the most important people in my life....
Fortunately, in searching for an alternative approach, I found Ben's site. Shortly after starting the steps in his Alternative Bipolar Treatment Plan, I began weekly therapy and EFT coaching sessions with Ben. In the six months since, he has helped me completely change my way of being in the world. I've rediscovered what it means to enjoy my life. My days are once again relatively peaceful, and I no longer live in constant fear of lapsing into another violent episode of mania or depression. There is still work to do, but I now feel confident in my ability to stay on track.
Whether you are at your wits end because standard treatment is not helping you, or you are newly diagnosed and looking for an alternative approach, do yourself a favor and give Ben a call. I will be forever thankful that I did just that (and for what it's worth, my sessions are remote, as I couldn't find anyone supporting an alternative treatment approach locally - this has not diminished my results one bit!)"
-Natalie, Bipolar Recovery Coaching Client 2010
This program is for those who:
- Have recently been diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder and don't know what type of treatment plan to follow.
- Have been taking a cocktail of psychiatric medications and are still experiencing bipolar symptoms and mood episodes.
- Are tired of the debilitating side effects of psychiatric medications and are seeking natural and complimentary treatments.
- Reject the idea that Bipolar Disorder is a chronic, life-long illness that will require drugs for the rest of their lives.
- Are ready to take full control of their lives and their health by learning to live in a disciplined and balanced manner, giving full support to their mind and body.
- Want to continue using psychiatric meds while also exploring other means of improving your quality of life.
- Want to try a model of recovery, rather than blindly accepting that traditional approaches are the only way.
Bipolar Recovery Coaching is an individualized program to suit your unique needs, utilizing a variety of methods, stress-reduction techniques, trauma-release techniques such as EFT/Meridian Tapping, goal setting, mood tracking and more. Most of my coaching clients are not local, and we work together by phone or Skype video calls. Call for details.
Reduced rates for January 2011. Learn more:
Learn more about Bipolar Recovery Coaching program
Meridian Tapping: Learn the Basic Technique
EFT/Meridian Tapping Sessions by Phone (or Skype)
Schedule a Session Now!
A Trauma can be created in a matter of seconds, and with Meridian Tapping/EFT it can
heal in the same amount of time. So let go of your ideas about “deeply ingrained
trauma,”.... it's much easier to change than you ever thought possible.
""... I have already benefited greatly from your guided meditations and your book! I never trust anyone (especially someone I don't even know), but as I used your website and free meditation, asked you a question which you promptly answered, and moved on to your book and began regularly practicing EFT/Meridian Tapping, I began believing in your methods as the results were speaking loud and clear--relief and release from mental and emotional behaviors I have lived with my whole life, and thought I would have to live with forever. I am becoming a new person, seeing life in a whole different context, and actually being happy! While I still have a ways to go with some problems, I know that I can, and I will, make it through--thanks to you and your generosity in sharing your methods. Six months ago I was in a hospital on suicide watch; today I am actually happy and optimistic about the future. Proof that it is never to late!!"
You can listen to a sample from the Audio Book Introduction right here:
(The Full 2.5 hour audio book comes as a bonus, along with my full 62-Minute Guided Meditation Audio, when you purchase the eBook)
Special Limited-Time Offer: Purchases made before November 11th 2010 will include a free Webinar on Thursday November 18th at 4pm PST. This will be a Live 90-Minute Tutorial on Meridian Tapping for symptoms of depression, anxiety, trauma, and stress, as well as for success and manifesting your dreams.
Now available here:
Tapping Into Joy: Meridian Tapping and Mindfulness for Depression
The basic technique is simple to learn. Coming up with the right words or phrases takes a little more practice. Experiment with it and as they say, "try it on everything." It's the only way to prove to yourself that this is actually a powerful tool worth an absolute fortune.
By learning to use Meridian Tapping/EFT for yourself and your family, you will be saving yourself from pain, poor health, and even expensive medical treatments, just by activating your body's own natural healing abilities. You will have a tool that can overcome virtually any emotional or mental obstacle to your peace, happiness and success in life. It pays to be persistent!
Learn the Basic EFT/Meridian Tapping Technique
Energy Psychology and Meridian Tapping (EFT)
"This may be the biggest breakthrough in Medicine and Psychology in the last century."
Dr. Dawson Church - Author of Genie in your Genes
Variously called "Energy Tapping," "Meridian Tapping Technique," and Emotional Freedom Techniques® or “EFT” - tapping is an amazing Energy Psychology technique that can be easily learned and self-applied for an enormous array of problems. It is excellent for depression, as well as virtually any emotional disturbance, phobia, fear, traumatic memory, negative thought, and even for many physical problems (including some chronic problems that may have been unsuccessfully treated for years using all sort of conventional and alternative methods).
By tapping on these electrochemical activation points, the nervous system is balanced, and the emotional center of the brain (the amygdala) ceases it's reactivity to the disturbing negative thought, image, memory, or whatever the case may be. Studies now show that tapping quickly reduces levels of the stress hormone cortisol...
Learn more about Meridian Tapping and EFT
Learn to Meditate: The True Self Is Ever-New Bliss
"The thinking mind is an obstacle to the inflow of higher gnosis and Truth because its analytical and judgmental thought ripples distort the true message of the incoming knowledge. Only consciousness, free from the ripples of thought in the mind's lake, can experience Divinity in all its splendor, all its beauty and all its Truth."
Healing The Apparent Self
Of The Ignorance Of
The True Self Is The Ultimate
Essence Of All Healing"
"The 'here' is everywhere and the now -- always. Go beyond the 'I-am-the-body' idea and you will find that space and time are in you and not you in space and time. Once you have understood this, the main obstacle to realisation is removed."
-Shri Nisargadatta Maharaj
Realization is our true nature. It is nothing new to be gained. What is new cannot be eternal. Therefore there is no need to be doubting whether we would gain or lose the self."
-Sri Ramana Maharshi
"Learn to be calm and you will always be happy."
You always have the ability to go within and to surrender to your own Higher Self - your eternal and ever present Consciousness. Here is the source of your true happiness, bliss and contentment. That which you seek in the world is already here, within you Now.
Try my guided meditation here and now. Just make yourself comfortable, stop what you're doing and take a 15 minute break to feed your soul:
"I went to your website and found your “guided meditation for depression”. The 15 minute one. I laid down... just exhausted from all the inner pain and the “trying” to make is stop... and "trying to fix it"... and I listened to your guided meditation for 15 minutes. The inner pain went away. I was kind of stunned! (I meditate daily)…so I felt as if some kind of “inner demon” was tormenting me or something, and it was simply gone and I could breathe and felt I came back to myself. I felt like my self for the first time in days. The pain wasn’t just “shouting at me” nor was it simply “lurking in the background”... lurking to come back...it was gone."
This guided meditation audio, along with an additional segment is now available for sale on my website. You can listen to part one (the first 15 minute meditation) any time, directly on the site, or by clicking the player below. The second link below will allow you to download the 15 minute meditation for your personal use - only available through this newsletter.
The biggest obstacle to achieving positive results in meditation, is failing to meditate! As a long time meditator and meditation teacher in the Kriya Yoga tradition, I have observed an interesting phenomenon, almost universally, for most practitioners (myself included): the biggest barrier to success is avoidance of meditation practice. Seems ridiculously obvious, I know, but let's look at the issue a little deeper.
We each have many facets to our personality, and our consciousness. Most of what influences our behavior, our choices, our plans, our ideas and beliefs and our intentions - is unconscious within us. It is beyond our awareness. We see the results of it in our daily lives, in the chaos, the drama, the emotions, the pain and the conflicts that show up around us - but we rarely perceive the source. Not all of it is "negative." Positive experiences also come out of the unconscious mind, when we have positive expectations and intentions. Yet all of this "mind-stuff" is of the ego. It is thought-based. It is temporary and it is always shifting and changing, like a wild river - unpredictable.
Beyond this, the soul-consciousness or Self, exists in perfect peace - an ever-present, super-conscious "seer" that quietly guides us through intuition and observes everything that we think and do, yet does not interfere under normal circumstances. You can think of this as the "True Self," or the "still, small voice" within.
Meditation is the process of going within, listening to that still, small voice of the Innermost Self, the inner Divine. There are many different meditation traditions - all originating from a common ancient source, yet varying a great deal in their methods. Yet the obstacles remain the same: Fear, Avoidance, Distraction, Boredom, Restlessness, Agitation, Impatience. Regardless of your chosen path of meditation, if you don't sit still, breath, focus, and discipline yourself to tolerate the mental chatter, you will never get off the ground. You will have quit before you've even started. Why do we do avoid this?
This avoidance is the mind's way of trying to preserve it's existence. Your mind - (the "ego") - mistakenly has come to believe that it is the be all and end all of your exitence. The ego has created itself out of a false belief that your very essence is based in thoughts, concepts, memories, personal history, the body, your image and so on. And yet all of these things are temporary, ever-changing and ultimately figments of your own imagination. Only the True Self, the Divine Consciousness is everlasting, uncorruptable and unchanging. When you sit and observe the mind, or use techniques to enter your Superconscious awareness, the mind-stuff begins to reveal itself as an illusion. This creates an identity crisis. We are terrified of losing ourselves, and this can feel exactly like you're going to die! Meditation is not for the faint of heart. But don't worry, a little daily meditation is not going to push you over the edge. The ego is much too strong for that! Go slow, and don't overdo it in the beginning. Start with 15 minutes a day. Be gentle but firm with your mind. Sitting down and breathing, and being still is a great start.
And please, if you are experiencing deep depression and having disturbing thoughts of a self-destructive nature, or thoughts of suicide, then meditate only with the guidance and support of a therapist or capable meditation teacher who has a good knowlege of depression.
Above all else, always practice kindness - first and foremost, towards yourself.
Yogic Breathing Techniques to Supercharge and Balance You
Pranayama – literally “life-force control” – are powerful techniques for shifting your consciousness, purifying mind and body, and raising your energy. Pranayama is a core part of several types of Yoga and is an excellent addition to any meditation practice. Pranayama are dynamic and invigorating and you will feel the benefits immediately.
Nadi Shodhana – Alternate nostril breathing: (Balances the subtle life energy of the body and the two sides of the brain, calms the mind and increases vitality; a good basic pranayama for depression and emotional imbalance). Sit comfortably with head and spine straight, close your eyes and relax. Close one nostril with the thumb, breathe a long slow breath (always from the belly) through the open nostril. Then, pausing for a moment, remove the thumb and cover the other nostril with the ring and pinky fingers, and slowly exhale through the open nostril. Then inhale back into that same open nostril, cover it with the thumb again, and exhale through the other side. And so on for several rounds. (Rest the middle and index fingers between the brows). Keep the length of breath even. Try counting to 4 in, and 4 out. To alleviate anxiety and nervousness, inhale to a count of 4, and exhale for a count of 8.
Learn Pranayama techniques - Bhastrika, Ujjai, Nadi Shodhana, Kapalabhati, Surya Bheda and more
Learn more about yoga and meditation for health, happiness and vitality.
ASK THE THERAPIST
Due to an overwhelming number of questions posted to the forum, I have been unable to keep up with the requests. Therefor, rather than continuing to accept new questions which will sit for an indefinite amount of time, unanswered, I have temporarily disabled the Ask-the-Therapist portal. Please do read the hundreds of previously answered questions; I hope to reactivate the forum in the near future. Thanks for your patience! If you submitted a personal question that was not answered and would like to schedule a consultation with me, you may call me at 707-326-5566.
Stay Tuned for the next Newsletter -
Earth - Sun - Moon.... harnessing the healing energies of the celestial bodies.
Don't Give Up!
Every life challenge is an opportunity to awaken. There is no situation that is hopeless. Something positive, healing and transformative is possible in all circumstances, even when we can't recognize it at the time. Sometimes we forge ourselves out of the fire of suffering and loss, and it isn't until the end that we realize what a beautiful work of art has emerged within. The glory of waking up can't be experienced if you don't first accept that you are asleep.
May we all find peace. May we all know joy. May we all be liberated from fear, and released from illusions. May we all return to the Truth of our inner Light.
Watch EFT-Meridian Tapping Instructional Videos and Connect with me on Facebook:
I value your opinions and your feedback. Please let me know if this newsletter was helpful and feel free to ask questions. I update my website regularly, so check the site for new information, and if you like what you see, let others know about it.
Wishing you health and great joy!
Benjamin Schwarcz, MFT is licensed psychotherapist (#mfc35606), meditation teacher, and energy coach with a private practice at 509 7th Street, Santa Rosa, CA, 95401. He can be reached at 707-326-5566.
This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. As with any drug, not all supplements are safe for all individuals and there may be risks and contraindications for people with certain conditions. Always consult a professional health care provider before before trying to treat a serious condition on your own.
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