NEURAL Re • programming
Taking the mystery out of changing habits that no longer serve.
I know what it's like to feel completely disempowered by my habits. Overwhelmed by life. Hiding, feeling shame, isolation and low self esteem which lead to a prolonged state of indifference, apathy, and detachment.
Let's explore tools to integrate "difficult" emotions by coming home to yourself, to life and to love, again and again.
I would be honoured and grateful to share what I've learned with you.
I'm working on developing a program to help re-train habits that no longer serve me. By habits, I mean ways of thinking, feeling and behaving that create suffering in my life and in the lives of those around me.
The brain, heart and intestines are distinct but connected areas of neural tissue. By using a variety of techniques to create coherence between these power centers in the body, we can accelerate neural re-wiring in order to build healthy and more effective pathways to peace, compassion, acceptance and unconditional love.
Old habits that used to be effective ways of soothing, coping and managing stress which now can be upgraded with the use of new tools, understanding and awareness.
Doing it together is more rewarding and essential to lasting success. I get stoked by the opportunity to share my wisdom with those eager to learn.
Here's what has worked well for me and what I'm excited to share with you :)
**I am unaffiliated with all of these amazing experts, resources and systems of transformation. I'm just recommending what has worked well for me and I update this page as new resources come to me that I test and verify work well.
D.O.S.E. | THE NEURO-CHEMISTRY OF HAPPINESS
MEET YOUR HAPPY CHEMICALS! (And your STRESS HORMONES TOO!)
Dopamine, Oxytocin, Serotonin, and Endorphins. These are the essential neurochemicals of a happy brain and there's some amazing new research out on how to harness these for your benefit, and how to better understand Cortisol, the key stress hormone.
We'll be using the worksheets from Loretta Breuning's book 'Habits of a Happy Brain' which I highly recommend reading.
Dr Loretta Breuning
This is a fantastic, simple, accessible breath work practice that is a great way to regulate your nervous system. The book Michael wrote goes into detail about a process he used to overcome a crippling neurological disorder by retraining his brain to become fully present in the face of extreme pain.
The essential part of the practice combines breath control and mantra for 15 minutes to bring the nervous system fully into the present.
What I love about this practice is how simple, easy and effective it is as a nervous system reset. The perfect precursor to deeper work.
BREATHWORK + PRANAYAM
Empowering, and highly regulating for the nervous system, the breath is always a good place to start. One of the few things that can be controlled by our autonomic or somatic nervous system.
As such it provides a bridge between the two, which as a result promotes neural coherence, while vitalizing the body with an essential fuel for life.
We will explore both breath training as an aerobic exercise, and using breath to induce trance and states of meditative awareness.
My first yoga teacher training began with 6 months of breathwork before doing any asana. So this is a fundamental teaching for me in the realm of embodiment.
This is a breath training video I made of a routine I learned from my yoga teacher, David Goulet. It's designed to build strength and flow when breathing
Breath with Sandy is one of my new daily rituals. I HIGHLY recommend you subscribe to his YouTube channel.
Once we've cultivated some presence, which is essentially developing a coherent field of resonance within the brain, we can now explore some fundamental tools for meditation, using body awareness, receptivity (or active listening) practice and self-witnessing of thoughts.
Insight Timer is a powerful app and large community of meditators, healers and wisdom keepers. One of my faves, and Tara Brach's guided meditations on there are epic.
DANCE + MOVEMENT
Music, dance and a mindful approach to movement are key tools that help us essentially stay human. Dance is one of the oldest cultural rituals there is, and new insights into the neuroscience of dance make it a powerful fundamental for releasing stagnant energy, vitalizing body tissue, and diving deep into the seat of the soul where freedom from disempowering narratives truly lies.
Practice letting go of what is in the way, and use dance as a way of connecting directly to the divine nature of all things.
As a pioneer in the realm of DJ-ing for embodiment, yoga, and ecstatic dance I'm here to help you seriously get your groove on.
Need to shake your bones?
Here's a choice selection of some of my ecstatic dance DJ sets
AMPLIFY YOUR GIFTS - AUTHENTIC VOCALIZING
Learn to sing by yourself and in groups in a way that directly connects you to Source. Free yourself from unhealthy narratives about how you 'sound', and the beauty of your voice will soar as you find your authenticity, and tune into the cosmic music of life that you already are a part of.
Learn specific mindfulness techniques of softening the body, breathing, and listening with awareness to resonate with the fundamental knowing of musicality, which we all posess.
I can guide you into your voice no matter what your previous experience with singing is.
Breath of Life
Here's a video I made of 90 minute vocal journey so that you can get a taste of what this powerful work is like.
COLD WATER IMMERSION
I'm not a certified Wim Hoff Method instructor, however I have taken a 5-day course with Wim's first certified US instructor, Daniel Cortez. I then spent a year practicing the technique, overcoming my own deep aversion to cold water and shifting into a place where I actually craved getting in the ocean to meditate on a daily basis.
There is plenty of hype surrounding Wim's practices, and they're the real deal. Meeting the cold is a profoundly transformative experience that opens up a whole new way of seeing yourself, reflected in the power of nature.
At the age of 18 I was in a high speed, head on collision that caused my small and large intestines to burst. My liver suffered damage and my stomach herniated. I also had severe trauma to my low back as well as whiplash and a concussion.
The result was the beginning of a life long healing path with my digestion system, learning many things about diet, cleansing, fasting, and how intestinal health affects mood, and the brain's capacity to regulate the neurochemistry of happiness.
There is of course so much personal inquiry around diet, but I'll share some basics and fundamentals I've learned along the way, and we'll go on a long, slow, easy-does-it cleanse together.
Cleansing Tips and Tricks
Sharing some insights from my own experiences of how to set yourself up for success on a seasonal cleanse.
"The Smell of Rain on Dust - Grief and Praise" by Martin Prechtel
As a culture, we are both grief illiterate and death phobic. Learning to grieve well allows us to experience authentic praise for the beauty of life, and helps turn loss, depression, anxiety, isolation and fear into a profoundly deep sense of inter-connectedness with the source of life and death. In this book, Martin lays out a clear path for restoring the power of grief work to a culture who is ultimately lost to themselves because they can't grieve well. In restoring this, we are individually reclaiming our capacity to integrate profound loss, and in doing so, heal the underlying roots suffering, which when left untended, fuel our addictive tendencies.
12 STEPS | ACCOUNTABILITY + CONNECTIVITY WITHIN A GROUP
I first got sober using the 12 steps of Alcoholics Anonymous. It's a powerful program for self inquiry and deep habit change that goes way beyond substance abuse and into a full scale reprogramming of your entire life.
We'll look at and use the framework of the 12 steps as a backdrop for all of the work we do in re-orchestrating our lives. It will provide us with a spiritual, mental and physical container to put all of our tools to work in. Allowing us to heal our past, imagine a new now and live in the present more fully than ever.
Here's an overview of what the essential core of each step is about:
1: ACCEPTANCE + HONESTY
3: TRUST + COURAGE
4: AWARENESS + INQUIRY
5: TRANSPARENCY + INTEGRITY
10: PERSERVERANCE + COMMITMENT
11: PRAYER & MEDITATION