Confidence and Vision By Cheryl Canfield CCHT

Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined. –
Henry  David Thoreau

We limit ourselves by thinking that things can’t be done. The difference between succeeding and failing is usually pretty slim. When the going gets really tough we can either give up or push on one more time – and the “one more time” just might be the one that pushes us past the obstacles. Thomas Edison, who patented more than a thousand devices, including the phonograph and the incandescent light bulb said, “Genius is one percent inspiration and ninety-nine percent perspiration.”

We are what we think ourselves to be. The good news is that if the image we
have of ourselves is not the way we want to be, we can change by changing our image.
We can put our awareness outside of ourselves and observe objectively, and we
can go inside ourselves and feel the truth of our emotions. We can change. The
choice is ours. We can react – that is, give in to the conditioning of our habitual patterns
and let circumstances push us and pull us in whatever direction the wind is
blowing; or we can call on that part of ourselves that separates us from other
species – and make a conscious choice about the kind of person we want to be.
Confidence and vision come from having the courage to become conscious,
and to make a fully intended decision to become what we choose to be. It takes risk,
meaning a chance of loss, not only of internal or external security but the letting go of
thoughts that hold us back from following our passions. There is always an easy way.
For example, it may be easiest to do nothing. The easy way isn’t bad or good, it’s
just not a path that taps us into our inherent potential to do and be all that we’re here to
do and be. The path that taps us into that potential is generally risky. Confidence
doesn’t come from giving up or not trying. When we first started pulling ourselves up
onto furniture it was risky, but we did it. We must have fallen many times, yet in the end
we learned to walk. If we had given up the first time we tried and fell (or the eighth or
ninth), we wouldn’t be walking today. We have all had an experience, many experiences,
of building confidence and success.

Steve Jobs is an excellent model of confidence and vision. His astonishing
achievements have become a beacon of light, paving the way for expanding
our confidence in following the beat of our own inner drum. Jobs dropped
out of college, was fired from his position as a tech executive, and went on to
transform the world’s experience of personal computers and phones. He taught
us that making mistakes can sometimes lead to the best possible outcome, as
we follow our visions with confidence.

If you are not doing today what you want to be doing because you think you
lack confidence, it may be only the thought that is holding you back. Confidence
doesn’t come without first facing your fear about something or of the unknown.
You face whatever it is that is unfamiliar or that frightens you, and then do it anyway.
How many excellent public speakers started out with confidence? Not many.
Most started out terrified and went on to speak in front of an audience anyway.
As a young man in England, Gandhi  was elected to the Executive Committee
of the Vegetarian Society and attended all of the meetings – but he was tonguetied.
He once wanted to address an important topic that was coming up so he
wrote notes that he could read. When the time came he couldn’t bring himself to
even read what he had written, and had it read by someone else. In any social setting,
the presence of half a dozen people or more would strike him speechless.
After studying law he found that he was good at gathering facts but was hesitant
at his ability to present them. When he got up the courage to take a case (because
he needed the money) he made his debut in small claims court, where he had to crossexamine witnesses. His mind went blank and he could think of no questions to ask.
He resigned on the spot. Yet he came to find his confidence and he certainly found
his vision. He later said, “Beyond occasionally exposing me to laughter, my
constitutional shyness has been no disadvantage whatsoever. In fact I can see that,
on the contrary, it has been all to my advantage.

Its greatest benefit has been that it has taught me the economy of word. It has
allowed me to grow. It has helped me in my discernment of truth.” Gandhi, admittedly
shy, had no confidence in his ability to communicate his thoughts, yet he forged
ahead and not only changed a nation, but continues after his death to inspire millions.
When you face your fears you realize that your catastrophic expectations don’t come to pass.

But it didn’t happen. And when you make it through some difficult situation you
start to trust that you can do it again – and again. It may not be easy, but then it may
be easier than you think. Your reactions to the experiences of life are determined
by your thinking, which you can change. “Yes, I’m scared. But I can do this.”
You have the creative ability to build confidence and vision into every area of
life. Everything exists in the mind first and then comes into being through action.
What motivates you and fills you with enthusiasm? What do you love? You can look
at this question in regard to what you do for your living, the kind of relationships
you would like to have, where you would like to live, what kind of environment you
would like to live in, what inspires you, what do you do that inspires or serves
others, and so on. Every day you can do something – take one step – in one or more
areas of your life to move closer to your visions, growing in confidence as you do so.
What we focus on we tend to manifest, and as we resolve to move toward the things we love the universe begins to move with us – and may even add magical
dimensions to our vision of what can be. As Saint Francis said, “Start by doing
what’s necessary; then do what’s possible; and suddenly you are doing the impossible.”

Cheryl Canfield is author of the book, Profound healing: The Power of Acceptance on the
Path to Wellness. She is a Life and Wellness Counselor and Clinical Hypnotherapist in Napa, and instructor at the Hypnotherapy Training Institute in Corte Madera. She can be reached at cherylcan@aol.com. Website: www.profoundhealing.com

Something Old is New Again in Women’s and Men’s Health

Something Old is New Again in Women’s and Men’s Health

IntegraTherapies has brought to the Central Valley an old technique from Central America with its roots in Maya healing traditions. The new addition to the old is from Naprapathic  technique combined by Dr. Rosita Arvigo. It is the blending of old and new that has evolved into a traditional healing technique that balances body, mind and spirit for women and men. There are common digestive and abdominal disorders such as irritable bowel syndrome, indigestion, constipation, GERD, hernias and heartburn are treated with various medications or surgery; these treatments address symptoms, not causes. With the Arvigo
Technique of Maya Abdominal Massage™, the upper abdomen is given a deep massage
to loosen tight muscles around the stomach and arteries with vital blood supplies
that feed the digestive and eliminative organs. The diaphragm is also massaged
allowing relaxation of tight musculature.

In 2001, Trish Salvatore, of IntegraTherapies discovered an article in Massage Magazine about The Arvigo Technique of Maya Abdominal Massage™ or Therapy as it is now known and Dr Rosita Arvigo.  She had an “ah ha!” moment. This technique was the missing piece for her practice, mostly because it encompassed the whole person in the healing process. Trish has always believed that one must look at the whole person to encourage the individual’s body to initiate the healing. ATMAT™, as it is called, is a non-invasive, external manual manipulation — a method that guides abdominal organs into a proper position for optimal health, function and well-being.

The technique relieves congestion and blockages thereby encouraging and improving the flow of energy (chi), as well as fluids in the circulatory, lymphatic and nervous systems, to prevent the progression of chronic disease symtomology, according to Dr. Rosita Arvigo.
“One of the greatest benefits”, said Salvatore, “is the self-care technique instruction
at the conclusion of the first session.

The patient is given instruction in a portion of the technique which, in some cases, is performed daily for optimal health. But it is this self-care instruction that is critical to the improvement of a patient’s health. This knowledge also can be something that a patient can incorporate into a daily health routine for life.” Trish uses this technique daily for optimal health.

Trish Salvatore started studying with Dr. Arvigo in 2006 and is in the process of becoming a self-care instructor in this methodology. Her personal experience is that the technique has brought balance and harmony to her life both physically and emotionally, especially as she has moved toward post menopause with ease. Another reason Trish loves the Arvigo technique is that the first visit with a patient is two hours. She says, “I spend the first hour doing an intake that covers medical history, family health history, reasons for the visit
and current areas of complaints, health goals, exercise, nutrition, digestion and
elimination, emotional and spiritual concerns, medication and supplements. In
addition, I take a complete reproductive history whether one is female or male. Invariably,
individuals start to share more than what is on paper. They begin to feel safe,
let their protective walls come down, then that is where the real healing can start.”
According to the Arvigo Institute, for women, this external massage gently lifts
and guides the uterus into its optimal position in the lower pelvis. The uterus is held
in position by over ten ligaments. Ligaments, when stressed or strained, cause the
uterus to become mal-positioned. If the uterus is mal-positioned, women experience
a multitude of symptoms: for example, PMS, painful periods or ovulation, varicose
veins, infertility, headaches and migraines, incontinence, constipation, miscarriages,
difficult menopause, fibroids, cysts, uterine polyps and endometriosis, among many. In
men, the prostate is a glandular organ that rests behind the bladder, and has limited
or no ligaments for support. The prostate gland can become congested, resulting in
early stages of benign prostatic hypertrophy (BPH), impotence (depending on the
cause), decreased sperm count, erectile dysfunction, etc. By applying this massage
technique to the abdomen, healthy organ function and congestion relief are supported.

Trish Salvatore is: a licensed and certified massage therapist, a certified Labor
Assistant, certified in Arvigo Technique Maya Abdominal Therapy™, a Holistic
Health Educator/Counselor and a Reiki Master in Usui and Angelic Reiki. She
has practiced holistic health and integrative therapies for over twenty five years.

You can contact Trish by phone at 209-815-7981 or by email at trishsalvatore@att.net

Living an Inspired Life

By Cheryl Canfield

It’s easy to feel discouraged.

On the collective level, these are uncertain times.

The economy is fragile, the environment is suffering, scientists and politician are arguing over whether or not we can afford to stop abusing our resources. On a personal level we can feel helpless, even hopeless.

But we must hold on to hope or we become paralyzed. Hope is a state of mind, not a state of the world around us. In the words of Vaclav Havel:

Hope, in this deep and powerful sense, is not the same as joy that things are going well, or willingness to invest in enterprises that are obviously heading for success, but rather an ability to work for something because it is good.

These times are calling us to action.

Ultimately, we must look to ourselves to be and do what we want to see in the world.

So how do find the inspiration to motivate and direct us?

To begin with, we can surround ourselves with inspirational things. Inspirational things lift us up and connect us with our higher nature and inner wisdom. My dear friend and mentor, Peace Pilgrim, said:

“Your higher nature is a drop in the ocean of God – and has access to the ocean.”

Sometimes we access our higher nature through the inspiration of beautiful music or surroundings.

Such occasions may bring up insights, glimpses of universal truth, or connect us with a sense of inner guidance. We can also connect with our higher nature through beautiful written or spoken words, where we feel an inner sense of confirmation. Or as Peace says,

“You can directly perceive the truth from the inside. All inspired writing came from the inner source, and you too, can receive from that source.”

Inspiration and direction can come when we quiet our minds in meditation and reflection.

We slip in to different states of mind all the time and these states of mind can become a habit.

We may, for example, develop a habit of worry or a habit of positive expectation.

We always have a choice in the matter, though we may not be aware that we are making that choice.

Awareness is the key word. Before we can make changes we need first become aware of what it is that we are changing or aspiring toward.

As you think about surrounding your self with inspirational things, mind is a very good place to start.

You can go inside, in a quiet state of meditation or self-hypnosis, and create an inner sanctuary – a place that inspires you, lifts you up, and connects you with your inner guidance.

Your inner sanctuary is a very personal space.

It might be abstract, like glowing color and flowing sound; it might be an incredible garden or place in nature, real or imagined; or it might be a special room filled with everything you love. You can bring in as many senses as possible – sight, sound, touch, feel, even taste.

The more senses you call on the more empowering the experience becomes.

A fascinating aspect of using imagination is that the subconscious mind doesn’t distinguish between what is real and what is imagined. Therefore our bodies respond with the same pleasurable feelings and healing endorphin’s that we would experience if we were actually in the setting we are imagining.

This is also an aspect of visualization that makes it an effective technique for creating the changes you want to move toward in life.

Another way to create inspiration is in a journal.

You can use a personal journal to record beautiful thoughts, prayers or poetry; you can create collages of things
that inspire you – art, photos of nature or beautiful landscapes or any of the things that fuel your passion.

Creating this kind of journal can provide an uplifting reprieve in difficult times or the peace of respite in a quiet moment, a place to reconnect with the things that fuel you through the adventures and challenges of life. And it can connect you with that place of inspiration, your own higher nature, that motivates you to take positive action in some personal or collective way.

You can also create your external environment, your home and office or work space, to be places that inspire and lift you up. Everything in your environment has a subtle effect on you, adding to your comfort and ease or discomfort, your peace and serenity or tension.

You can pay attention to color, cleanliness, clutter, objects that elicit emotional triggers, functionality, esthetic beauty. Look around your office or a particular room in your home. What inspires you or calms you? What stirs your emotions – positively or negatively?

What is the room primarily used for, and what is the feeling you want to experience here?

You will probably want to feel creatively inspired in a room that is used as an office or art studio or perhaps the kitchen,
where food can be creatively prepared.

In a workout or game room you probably want to be inspired to rev-up your metabolism and move. In a bedroom you want to elicit feelings of relaxation and calmness.

Sometimes we become so used to our environment that we stop “seeing” what is there. We stop noticing how we feel then
we enter a certain room but the objects we surround ourselves with reflect a particular energy.

For instance, one woman was asked by a Feng Shui expert what she felt when she walked into her bedroom. The bedroom was filled with massive, dark colored, expensive looking furniture. “Well, I think at least I got something good out of a lousy marriage.”

The furniture was a constant reminder of a painful situation, but she hadn’t looked at it from that perspective.

Incidentally, that same woman had been hoping to find a new relationship but hadn’t been getting anywhere.

Her Feng Shui guide suggested she get rid of the furniture and replace it with something that reflected herself, which she did.

Soon afterwards she entered a new relationship.

Perhaps she had stopped mulling over her bitterness after removing the trigger for all those negative feelings, which may have left her more emotionally open.

Focusing on the positive and surrounding yourself with things that lift you up is a choice.

You make it every day. The wonderful thing about focusing on the positive is that once you’ve broken a habit of negative focus, your positive focus becomes habit. What you focus on you tend to bring into manifestation. When you surround yourself with inspiration you are working on healing all aspects of yourself, physical as well as mental, emotional and spiritual.

Peace Pilgrim, a woman who counseled others in healing their lives and also in physical healing had this to say about inspiration:

“I wish for all a complete healing – not through the suppression of symptoms by drugs, but through the removal of
cause. I hope you will be inspired to put yourself on a really excellent health diet. I hope you will be inspired to search for and remove all negative thoughts and feelings. I hope you will be inspired to fill your life with beautiful things – the
beauty of nature, uplifting music, beautiful words and meaningful activities. Stay away from everything that pulls you down,and stick to the things that lift you up!”

Cheryl Canfield is a Life and Wellness Counselor. She can be reached at 209-785-8855; or www.
profoundhealing.com
She is the author of Profound Healing and Co-Compiler of Peace Pilgrim: Her Life and Work in Her Own Words.

Yoga: Lighting The Light Within

By Diane Siegfried

Debbie Wolski has owned the Village Yoga Center in Modesto’s McHenry Village for seven years. To reach to her upstairs studio, one must climb a stairway with walls that Debbie (a talented muralist) has painted to create the feeling of passing through a zen garden. This sets the stage for her intimate yoga studio.

The walls of her studio have murals that are painted in a style reminiscent of well-known artist Thomas Kinkade, “Painter of Light.” This warm friendly light-filled atmosphere is symbolic to Debbie because she feels it is important to “help people find the light within” which she does through Yoga.

For twenty years, Wolski taught aerobic classes at all the major health clubs in Modesto. She noticed that her students’ favorite part of the session was the Yoga cool down because they felt it was so empowering and they wanted more. Because of this, Wolski developed her Yoga class and placed it on her class schedule. When one of the clubs wanted her to remove the Yoga class because they felt Yoga was a religion, Debbie knew it was time to open her own studio and create a better environment for the practice of Yoga. It also allowed her to do a lot less driving around from club to club. “Yoga is not a formal religion,” says Wolski, “The practice of Yoga is about stillness and a way to build up stamina for sitting in mediation. Meditation is the ultimate aim of Yoga. This allows you to completely connect with The Source or God and to find that stillness. The beautiful thing about Yoga is that it encompasses all religions and the belief that there is something bigger than us, that people are here for a reason and have a purpose. It will enhance your religion because there is a spirituality to Yoga that crosses over all the religions. Yoga is more about spirituality than specific religious beliefs.”
When asked what drew her to Yoga Debbie explained, “What drew me to Yoga was having scoliosis. In the late 60’s and 70’s friends of mine introduced me to Yoga, and it relieved my back issues, at least the pain. The more I practiced Yoga the better my back felt, so I simply continued, and I have actually minimized the lateral curvature of my spine. I have been practicing now for 37 years. My doctor diagnosed me when I was 21. He said by the time I was thirty, I would be riddled with arthritis and possibly confined to a wheelchair. I decided, no, he does not know how much Yoga helps. So I kept doing it. The twists are really the most beneficial. In scoliosis the spine is curved laterally, so one side is hugely over stretched and the other side is too relaxed. It becomes thin and atrophies. Twisting creates a balance by stretching the area that is under stretched and relaxing the area that is over stretched.” Yoga also helps other back problems by strengthening the back and abdominal muscles which are essential to maintaining a healthy back. Over one million Americans use yoga to keep their backs healthy and to ease or relieve back pain. Yoga helps with alignment of the spine, flexibility and balance. Yogis say, “You’re only as old as your spine.” There are many other health challenges that yoga can help, like fibromyalgia, high blood pressure, and bone density.

Debbie also has a Kid’s Yoga class at the center. Teaching children yoga she feels gives them a huge head start in life by helping them learn to get in touch with their bodies, let go of stress, how to breathe and meditate. This teaches kids discipline and sharpens their ability to concentrate which helps them function better in school and at home. Wolski has helped children with ADD and ADHD. Learning yoga with its mind/body connection
aids these children in learning to focus, concentrate and to control their impulsivity, fidgeting and restless behavior.

There are several other special focus classes taught at the center. One of the classes concentrates on back care. Most clients that start this class have lost mobility and strength in their back muscles. Debbie uses folding chairs to start with until the students get the idea of how to stay straight and well aligned in the poses. She attempts to make it easy for her clients to feel successful. The ninety minute heart health class which is called Cardio Combo on the schedule, consists of a half an hour of low impact aerobics designed specifically for the heart, laughter (“which is the best medicine”), pilates, yoga and a special five minute kundalini yoga exercise taught to her by Swami G which is the equivalent to running a mile. There is also a Yoga teacher training class that is registered
with the Yoga Alliance. Special Modesto Junior College yoga classes held at the center instead of the college, that the give the MJC students units and a grade. These are held in the fall, spring and summer.

Debbie holds workshops and weekend intensives at the center, like the one
that she just had with Swami Ganesh Nand, where he demonstrated vibration healing by using a special drum and breathing techniques, charka opening and balancing and mind control.

For Debbie the Village Yoga Center is a place for learning, healing, and strengthening the body, mind and spirit. Through yoga she says, “You can add years to your life and life to your years!” Wolski closes many of her yoga sessions with this wonderful quote: “When there is light in the soul, there is beauty in the person. When there is beauty in the person, there is harmony in the home, there is peace in the world”

For more information on The Yoga Center or to sign up for classes see
their website at www.villageyogacenter.com or call Debbie at 209-578-5441