Mental health

  • What is Forgiveness? From A Course in Miracles.

    From Part II of The Workbook of A Course in Miracles published by Foundation for Inner Peace

    What is Forgiveness? Page 401

    Para 1 –

    1. Forgiveness recognizes what you thought your brother did to you has not occurred.
    2. It does not pardon sins and make them real
    3. It sees there was no sin.
    4. And in that view are all your sins forgiven.
    5. What is sin, except a false idea about God’s Son? (ie each one of us)
    6. Forgiveness merely sees its falsity, and therefore lets it go.
    7. What then is free to take its place is now the Will of God.

    Para 2 –

    1. An unforgiving thought is one which makes a judgment that I will not raise to doubt, although it is not true.
    2. The mind is closed, and will not be released.
    3. The thought protects projection, tightening its chains, so that distortions are more veiled, and more obscure; less easily accessible to doubt, and further kept from reason.
    4. What can come between a fixed projection and the aim that it has chosen as its wanted goal?

    Para 3 –

    1. An unforgiving thought does many things.
    2. In frantic action it pursues its goal, twisting and overturning what it sees as interfering with its chosen path.
    3. Distortion is its purpose, and the means by which it would accomplish it as well.
    4. It sets about its furious attempts to smash reality, without concern for anything that would appear to pose a contradiction to its point of view.

    Para 4 –

    1. Forgiveness, on the other hand, is still, and quietly does nothing.
    2. It offends no aspect of reality, nor seeks to twist it to appearance it likes.
    3. It merely looks, and waits, and judges not.
    4. He who would not forgive must judge, for he must justify his failure to forgive.
    5. But he who would forgive himself must learn to welcome truth exactly as it is.

    Para 5 –

    1. Do nothing, then, and let forgiveness show you what to do, through Him Who is your Guide, your Saviour and Protector, strong in hope, and certain of your ultimate success.
    2. He has forgiven you already, for such is His function, given Him by God.
    3. Now must you share His function, and forgive whom He has saved, whose sinlessness He sees, and whom He honours as the Son of God. (ie All of us!)

    I practice Forgiveness throughout my day and it has changed my life. It healed my mind when I was living in fear (known as depression and anxiety in the world). Forgiveness healed my childhood trauma of abandonment and rejection, and therefore the fear of being alone.

    If you want to know how to practice Forgiveness or have any questions about this essay from A Course in Miracles and would like further explanation, eg the very first point, please do get in touch.

    With love, as ever

    Jacquie

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  • How we self-sabotage our spiritual practices

    How often have you been getting along nicely with your spiritual reading and practice when you get interrupted? It might be by something as simple as a bad cold and you feel rough for a few days, so you take time out to have a “duvet day” because you feel poorly and don’t want to do anything except watch daytime TV and eat chocolate to console yourself!

    Or it might be something more time-consuming such as a trip away or having a friend to stay so your routine gets disrupted and you almost forget that you had this good thing going prior to their visit!

    Or worse, you might get made redundant, or have a relationship breakdown, or have a challenging situation with a family member. You get completely thrown off track and your spiritual progress gets put back or worse – ignored!

    It might be that one of your major life lessons comes up to the surface for healing and that can also stop us in our tracks – it’s not always the ego, it can be a previous trauma coming up to be healed which may seem horrific at the time, but if you can forgive and release these emotional traumas you will be able to breakthrough and heal them – but they can, of course, throw us off track from our good spiritual practices.

    Our egos love to trip us up and will find many ways to do so – this is how we self-sabotage! It can be very much “three steps forward and two steps back”.

    Self-sabotaging is what we also tend to do on a low-key daily basis – we allow ourselves to be distracted from focusing on our thoughts because we want to go out shopping, meet a friend or watch TV. Socialising and relaxation are essential of course, but if we allow ourselves to become so busy being “human doings” instead of human beings, it will be your ego’s way of distracting you from your beneficial spiritual practice. Our egos will also distract us from leading a healthy lifestyle or a disciplined exercise routine. The ego will do anything and everything it can to keep us from progressing – it continually self-sabotages us, so be on your guard!

    The solution

    Start listening to your thoughts. Learn to not only listen but to distinguish your ego thoughts from your intuitive thoughts – these comes direct from Spirit and will always take you on the right and happiest path. Whereas our distracting, negative and anxious thoughts are ego-driven – they’re lies! Lies and damn lies! Thoughts that make you feel angry, resentful and upset in any way – including anxious thoughts – are of the ego. On the other hand, our intuitive thoughts are peaceful, happy and light-hearted. You can actually feel the difference in your body.

    Have a go. It’s fun! And don’t beat yourself up if you think, “I can’t do it”, because THAT’S a lying ego thought. If you want to receive intuitive guidance, you will succeed. It’s how I was taught by Maitreya, so if I can do it so can you!

    Say “No” to self-sabotage today!

    With love, as ever

    Jacquie

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  • My experience of Empty Nest Syndrome, Loss and Grief

    I was a single mother of two children from when they were 7 & 8 years old. We lived happily together and I kept a roof over their heads! My son left home at 24 years old, although he’d been travelling prior to that (India, Nepal and Australia), and my daughter left aged 21 but had rarely been away on her own.

    Neither of them went to university, so I’d been used to having a houseful, including the occasional boyfriend added into the mix! After they left school they both got jobs – so we were a tight unit and got on very well – mainly because we were all interested in spiritual development, as well as being generally easy going gentle folk! My daughter tells me now that I used to argue a lot with my son, but I seem to have erased any arguments from my memory!

    When the kids left home!

    When they eventually left home, I unexpectedly suffered terrible Empty Nest Syndrome! Despite knowing it was the right time for them to fly the nest and lead independent lives, and despite having heard about other mothers’ experiences, as with all emotional experiences, until we go through them ourselves they’re very hard to understand. And our hearts do not necessarily fall in line with what our heads tells us!

    To make matters worse for me, because Frances had been born in Australia, when she was 20 she went travelling Down Under, got her Australian passport and moved to Sydney permanently – 12,000 miles across the world! She didn’t just move up the road or to the next town, but to Australia, which for me was the beginning of a nightmare of loss and grief that I was completely unprepared for.

    To compound that loss, four months later my son resigned from his job in, got himself an Australian Working Visa and joined his sister in the Australian sunshine! Now, I was brought up overseas and have travelled extensively, but I’d never been on the other end of the see-saw before. I had, however, been sent to boarding school at the age of seven, the effects of which were abandonment, and the kids both now “abandoning” me, albeit in a very different way, now started to surface which I had to deal with at the same time. Grief, loss and abandonment.

    The reason I’m detailing this is to explain how, after years of having my kids in my home, I was feeling absolutely bereft! So, if you’re experiencing loss and grief, I can empathise and hopefully give you some useful ideas as to hoe to cope. The enormity of the closest two people in the world moving 12,000 miles’ away really hit me hard, and this was in the early 2000s before Facebook! Skype was in its infancy and there weren’t smart phones so FaceTime hadn’t been dreamt up back then! All making communications very hard indeed – Frances had to go to a public telephone box to call home and the time difference didn’t help either! Some say the world’s a smaller place because of technology and air travel, but in practical terms, the loss of a loved one to another country where you can’t hug them can’t be replaced.

    Loss and Grief

    Empty nesting is quite simply the term for loss and grief when the chicks fly the nest. In reality I felt desperately lonely, missed them terribly – I found it hard initially to even go into my daughter’s bedroom. Another friend told me that when her eldest daughter left to go to university, she would go into her bedroom and cry her eyes out. If you’re suffering now – you are definitely not alone.

    Twenty years is a long time for a mother to bond with her children, and whether you’re married or not, it can be a great loss when they leave home. Obviously everyone’s experiences of Empty Nesting are different – but many of us suffer at this time – Dads as well as Mums!

    Luckily, with the advent of the Internet we can now share our experiences, and this is what I’m doing in this blog. Knowledge and planning can help us to prepare for these experiences.

    I was single when they left home and as I didn’t live near my family, I think I not only suppressed my emotions but I didn’t really know what I was experiencing – and eventually I had a nervous breakdown. But you don’t have to!

    So, for any parent preparing for their children to leave home, I offer the following:

    1. Busy and active! Keep yourself as fully occupied as possible. Be this with your work, your hobbies and interests or your social life – wider family and friends. Later in life I’ve realised how important “community” is to me – be it a drama group, a gardening club, an exercise class or meditation group – meeting regularly with people with similar interests and values as me, is very beneficial.
    2. Talk! Speak to a Counsellor to help you with any unusual emotions. It’s much better to express your emotions and talk it all through with someone who’s objective. Family and friends can be supportive but they tend to have biased points of view, so a trained Counsellor or Psychotherapist can be of great help. Even if you “don’t think I’m that bad”, it’s worth it.
    3. Communication. Prior to your children leaving, talk to them about this and make plans to keep in touch with them on a regular basis. Explain to them that although they’ll be starting a new life with lots of do, remind them that you love them and want them to have a great time, but that a regular phone call, email or text message will make all the difference to you.
    4. Proper Prior Planning Prevents Piss Poor Performance! Therefore, also make a Family Plan when you will next see them and whether this will become a regular meeting. Having something to look forward to, to do together is really important – so put something in your diary!
    5. Meditate. Learn how to still your mind and find an inner peace – prior to them leaving home! Meditation might seem daunting at first, but it is easy to learn and really calms our minds, which is a lovely way to learn to be happy on your own, whatever happens in life and whether you’re married or not.

    That list wasn’t in any order of priority, but I’d put Learn and Practise Meditation as the most important thing to do. At one point or another in our lives we will all suffer loss; whether it’s caused by a relationship breakdown, divorce, redundancy, kids leaving home or the death of a pet, a close friend or member of your family – it’s a guaranteed part of life. So, by practising meditation it can bring us to a place where our minds are calm and vital questions will be answered for us. Ultimately, through meditation, we can create an understanding about the reality of us leaving this Earth plane, which can help us deal with the fear of death and other losses.

    If you have any questions or comments, please leave them below.

    With love, as ever

    Jacquie

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  • Do you feel overwhelmed? Are you depressed?

    I expect, wherever you’re reading this in the world, you’ve experienced self-isolation and social distancing during Lockdown. Vocabulary that wasn’t in use prior to the 2020 corona virus pandemic!

    Whatever your state of mind prior to the last few months, if you’re anything like me, I expect you’ve had some fearful thoughts, unusual emotions and changes in your mood. Have you ever considered where these thoughts come from? Over the years I’ve developed a spiritual thought-based practice that helps me to feel peaceful in upsetting moments of overwhelm, and this practice is available for us all. It’s called Forgiveness.

    Since I completed Master of Metaphysics courses in 2005, and even after I’d started teaching metaphysics myself, I had a nervous or psychological breakdown. It was a shock to my system because I “knew the theory”, but I still had my deep healing to do, which I eventually did and my breakdown led to a healing breakthrough and joyous re-awakening.

    I’d learnt about the ego’s thought system and how devious and self-sabotaging our egos can be; but it wasn’t until I went through my own Dark Night of the Soul – a place of deep loss, grief and sadness – that I was brought to my knees and either had to address my life lessons or stay in the dark forever. I discovered my main healing was around childhood abandonment – it was at this point that I really understood about our egos, so I chose the Light and learnt how to manage my ego thoughts.

    The Forgiveness practice

    I knew I had to forgive my ego’s fearful, negative thoughts that created my unhappiness, and I had to learn to communicate with Spirit because I couldn’t heal without connecting to the Light. So that became my No. 1 aim in life and I worked hard to achieve it. After a lot of personal development work I healed sufficiently to have my breakthrough in February 2018. Joy of joys!

    Having experienced these “mental health” challenges, which they are commonly referred to as, I now understand what they’re like and I empathise with people going through their darkest times. I know what it’s like to feel suicidal and to live with anxiety and fear every day, so I’m well-placed to help other people heal and find inner peace for themselves.

    I do this by teaching them about the ego belief system and their Higher Selves, and I support and guide them as to how to heal themselves with the techniques I used. This is my purpose for being on the Earth plane in this lifetime – I chose to return in this incarnation to help others do their healing work needed for their life lessons. But I had to go through it myself first! Often the biggest breakthrough comes after the hardest breakdown.

    I teach metaphysics to people wanting to discover their Truth and to find inner peace – you don’t have to suffer from depression, but this is a trigger for many people at the moment. The good news is that more and more souls are re-awakening at the moment, which is fantastic!

    Healing Techniques

    My breakdown spanned over a decade in which time I had counselling as well as going down the conventional medical route for a while. I employed healing tools such as EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique), relaxation, meditation, and a brilliant thought practice called Forgiveness, as taught in A Course in Miracles.

    Over the years I have learnt to communicate with Spirit, which has become a wonderful 24/7 connection. I’ve formed a daily habit of forgiving and releasing every upset I have, and I believe this was what finally gave me the peace I sought. It was pretty miraculous when my depression suddenly ended. Rather than a slow-burn lifting, the anxiety just went one day and a new-found joy came flooding back into my mind and life!

    Now, although my deepest fears have gone – and I’ve forgiven one hell of a lot – I continually use this practice a few times a day for anything that comes up which upsets me – from stubbing my toe on the bed to seeing a magpie swooping down to catch a chick in my garden – yes this just happened! But I can release any upset now so it doesn’t get stuck in my mind. I study A Course in Miracles daily to re-mind myself of Who I really am, not a human experiencing this pandemic but part of Spirit dreaming this illusion and knowing that I simply have to re-awaken to the fact that I never left God – none of us have.

    We are pure love; we are divine beings! Spirit is here for us all the time and we can all learn to communicate with them, forming a relationship with Spirit as a friend. This is key to creating a happy life for ourselves here on Earth because they help us to work towards our enlightenment.

    Relationship with Spirit

    I trained with ascended master Maitreya who told us he didn’t ask to be called Master and that we gave him that title. He said we don’t need to put him or any spiritual teachers on a pedestal. So, be normal when you talk to Spirit! We are all in this together, sharing our wisdom with anyone who wants to learn the spiritual development techniques that we’ve discovered work successfully. Gratitude for our teachers is all that’s needed. These spiritual relationships are not about being “religious” in the traditional sense, but about being authentic. Spirit knows what we’re thinking anyway and really is our friend!

    Please leave a comment or get in touch on the Contact Form if you’re interested in learning more, whether it be to help you out of a difficult time now, or whether you’re living with anxiety and experiencing a turbulent mind in any way. It doesn’t have to last forever, although I know it can sometimes feel like you’ll never get through it! Be kind to yourself and stay strong.

    Have an inspiring June!

    With love, as ever

    Jacquie

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  • What is Fear?

    Fear – what is it really?

    Hello there, isn’t this the strangest time of our lives? The whole world is under Lockdown due to the Corona Virus, and from what I gather, most people are feeling anxious and fearful. But also, the wonderful thing is that the whole world is working together to support each other, to keep each other safe and survive this pandemic.

    Can you feel the Fear more than usual at the moment? As soon as I hear the News come on the radio & TV, I can feel my mood instantly drop and feel a slight anxiousness descend upon me. I’ve therefore chosen not to listen to it. I rarely buy newspapers or read them online anyway, but when I’m listening to a music station they read News on the hour and every half-hour, so sometimes I can’t miss the latest death tally in England, Wales, etc.

    Spirit teaches there’s only either Love or Fear. If you’re not feeling God’s Love or the Peace of Spirit in your heart and mind at any time, everything else is linked to the ego self and is, therefore, fear-based.

    In A Course in Miracles (ACIM), a study book channelled by Jesus, he teaches exactly the same thing. There can only be Love or Fear, and our purpose is to be in a place of peacefulness and Love at all times, and to heal our unconscious minds so that we rid ourselves of the fear in them. Every time we feel ourselves being drawn into the mass consciousness of fear, we need to actively pull ourselves back by re-minding ourselves what the Truth is and to actively focus on Love, Peace and God.

    This Earth, our world, is an illusion of our ego’s making and the ego loves drawing us back into its dramas – at the moment it’s all about the Corona Virus. The ego doesn’t want us to become enlightened, loving beings.

    Fear is ONLY linked to our ego. It is in NO way connected to Spirit or our Higher Selves. Love and Fear are the only two true opposites, and only one is real – ie Love! What we usually think of as opposites, such as good and bad, black and white, light and dark are also of the ego mind. There can be NO opposites in God.

    Why is that? Jesus teaches in ACIM that Source is pure Love. God doesn’t see our imperfections and doesn’t acknowledge our trials and tribulations. All of our issues are only connected to our ego and therefore fear, which God doesn’t get involved with.

    God sent representatives such as Buddha, Jesus and ascended master Maitreya, to show us the way out of fear and lead us back to the Light. We have a choice – so let’s choose wisely. What are you choosing in this moment? Which would you rather align with? Love or Fear? Well, that’s a “no brainer”, surely?!

    We were raised in the ego’s belief system, therefore, it takes focussed hard work and persistent awareness to move towards the Light and to make the changes to our mental habits that we need to become and stay enlightened.

    After my kids, Russell and Frances, and I came back from Margaret McElroy’s Metaphysics courses (between 2003 – 2005), we used to stick bright yellow Post-It Notes all over our kitchen and bedroom walls, and on the doors leading from one room to another! We covered our house in re-minders of what we’d learnt so that we would be re-minded wherever we looked. No, it wasn’t pretty, but it worked! The notes said things like:

    1. Let go and let God – my favourite!  2. Meditate to connect to Spirit.  3. Ask Spirit for guidance.

    4. Speak your truth, quietly and clearly.  4. Face the fear.  5. You can do it!

    Frances created her Happi Cards, which you can buy from The Happi Empire’s website at https://www.thehappiempire.com, based on these teachings, which have developed since she also started studying A Course in Miracles. Check them out! They’re a very popular tool for spiritual development and used by Life Coaches around the world.

    It’s advisable to have a healing session at least once a month for our ongoing well-being. In times of self-isolation we can all practise Reiki on ourselves – the 21 day self-practice would not go amiss during this Lockdown. If you want to be attuned to Reiki, I can recommend teachers.

    Please remember that feeling fearful IS a choice. I’ve chosen to not allow it into my heart and mind so I don’t listen to the TV or radio News 24/7, it’s simply not necessary. Many Lightworkers don’t read the News anymore. If I do hear it and feel upset in any small way, I forgive and release it straightaway, which always brings me back to peace.

    So, how are you doing? How are you spending your days? I’m taking this time to catch up on some reading and have more time to do my spiritual practice. I’ve been creating some art – just for me – not for public viewing! And I’m keeping fit by jogging and walking, which is possible where I live. I’m communicating as much as possible with friends and family, and with strangers on social media! I’ll talk to anyone to try and calm their anxiety (fear) as much as I can – as I’m sure are you.

    It’s been lovely connecting with you today through this blog, and if you’d like to  leave me a comment, even if it’s just a “Hello” that would be lovely because it’s more important than usual to connect during this pandemic, and if website Contact forms are the way to do it, let’s get connecting!

    Stay safe.

    Love as ever,

    Jacquie

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  • We all have Mental Health … good or bad.

    mental health - Don't give up

    I say that “we all have mental health, good or bad”, because we all have minds. In True reality we all share the One Mind, but at this point let’s go with the worldly view of us being individuals with separate minds, where we have thoughts and emotions.

    I had a massive nervous breakdown in 2007, which had been festering with grief since my daughter emigrated to Australia in October 2005. She was born in Oz, in 1983 when we were living there, so she has dual-nationality and could visit Australia whenever she wanted to. In 2004, after a three-month travelling experience with a girlfriend, she decided to go and live in Sydney.

    When she first told me her plans, my initial reaction, bearing in mind I’d been a single mum since my kids were 7 & 9 years’ old, was, “Fantastic! It’ll be amazing and I can come and visit you!” That reminds me of when she was born, a baby sister for her 22 month-old brother … “Hello,” I said looking down at her in my arms, “We can go shopping together!” Well, after going through my second long labour, I deserved a guaranteed shopping partner! (And that worked out well, by-the-way!!)

    Then, the following January 2006, my son also went to live in Australia on a one-year working visa, so I was left (my subconscious told me that I’d been abandoned yet again), and I was living on my own in what had been our family home for the last 18 years in a small village, and I felt very isolated and was grieving for my loss of both kids to a country 12,000 miles’ away. Unbeknown to me, I went slowly downhill without knowing what was “happening” to me… and having repressed childhood emotions of sadness and loss, I was heading for a massive breakdown.

    I became increasingly depressed and anxious, I lost two stone (28lbs) in weight and had to buy two sizes smaller in jeans. I was desperate for company and used to greet our Postie over-keenly just because I wanted someone to speak to! I’d already started my ‘Master Your Life’ business in 2004, and had left my paid fundraising job in the charity Id worked for to focus on teaching spirituality full-time. I had over 20 ‘Master Your Life’ students up until 2008, when I finally had to submit to my poor mental health and address my healing.

    Those students by-the-way, and I’m very happy to relate, went on to become healers, astrologers, yoga practitioners, expressive artists, and one Pilates teacher, and continued to grow both spiritually and to lead happier, richer lives. A few went and did courses with my metaphysics teacher, Margaret McElroy, then in Seattle and who has since passed away, so they benefitted from her wonderful teachings too.

    The healing process for me was up and down, and as Margaret taught us, it would be three steps forward and two steps back. The healing journey is not necessarily an easy one, although the steps are simple to understand. I searched for answers outside of myself for healing from therapists; I talked to psychiatrists (four in England and one in Australia); and various counsellors, but ultimately my own physical health and spiritual and mental practices were up to me, with support from others, of course, we should always receive assistance from supporters and loved ones.

    This blog might become a book, so I’ll stop now! 

    If you’d like to learn more about how I help coach people on their spiritual and personal journeys, please use the contact form to get in touch with me, Jacquie.

    Photo by Dan Meyers on Unsplash

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