Broaden your Horizons

Have all your fledglings flown the nest, Do you want to broaden your own horizons?

nautilus shell

It is never too late to try something new that will flood your life with new experiences and make you the interesting person you know that you can be. Don’t feel left behind, discover there is a whole world waiting for you.

If your young people are spreading their wings why not do the same and surprise them. Move into a new phase of your life, discover new opportunities or revive your shelved dreams. Now is the time to give yourself permission to fly like an eagle. Let Breakthrough Retreats show you how.

Immerse Yourself in Pure Indulgence

Do you believe in personal development?  Want to know the heights you can achieve? Taste the rich life?

We offer exclusive retreats, which enable you to discover your purpose and focus. The rewards can be yours.

So make this the jewel in your crown.

Summer Wine

We are due to schedule a new Group Retreat. Over the next few weeks we will be blogging a series of questions, poses and motivational thoughts to inspire you to think about joining us. Enjoy!

Do you have a project that you want to come to fruition?  Will it be a vintage year for you?  Have you started something important in your life but got stuck?  Need to find out how to bring your project to maturity?  We can help you recapture your motivation and make it happen!

Summer Wine

Always starting something but never finishing it? Learn to focus, think big, and build a bigger picture. Visualise what you are really capable of and know that you will achieve it. Let go of those old patterns of behaviour and step forward with courage and commitment.

Call us at 01462 735726

Was Amy Winehouse Crushed By Sudden Fame?

The kind of sudden popularity Winehouse achieved can be disorienting and paralysing, experts say. Breakthrough Retreats takes a look at the life of the great star.

amy winehouse breakthrough retreats

Some stars seem born to be in the spotlight, thriving in the attention and adulation of their adoring fans and finding a way to navigate the downsides of intense public scrutiny with seeming ease. Others, such as troubled singer Amy Winehouse, appear to have difficulty handling the harsh spotlight and retreat into a destructive cycle of substance abuse and self-harm from which they never return.

Winehouse died at age 27 on Saturday 23rd July 2011. And though her cause of death has not been determined, it would seem with her sadly short career, which saw her rocket from obscurity in 2006 to tragic demise just five years later, she is the latest example of an artist for whom fame was to be too much, too soon.

“Anyone who is thrust into that kind of celebrity with that kind of attention needs a solid, well-built foundation and support system that they can wrap around them like a blanket,” said Dr. Charles Sophy, a psychiatrist who has appeared on VH1’s “Celebrity Rehab” and “The Housewives of Beverly Hills” and is the author of a new book on conflict-free communication for mothers and daughters, called “Side by Side.”

“If you don’t have those key elements, you’re more likely to implode and hit a wall,” Sophy said.

Read what Winehouse producer Salaam Remi had to say about working with the singer.

Winehouse, a child of divorce, appeared drawn to destructive personal relationships — including a tumultuous marriage to Blake Fielder-Civil that resulted in a number of public spats and arrests. To the public at least, it seemed she lacked some of the foundation Sophy says is necessary.

And though it’s impossible for outside observers to know for sure, Sophy speculated that genetics may have also played a part in Winehouse’s difficulty in dealing with fame, especially if there is a history of addiction or mental health issues in her family. “If those things are not dealt with, then they are huge issues too,” he said. “And if all that hits at once, you need coping skills and if those aren’t there …”

Though her legend was based almost entirely on a single album, 2006’s Back to Black, which spawned just two singles that charted in the U.S. — “Rehab” and “You Know I’m No Good” — Winehouse was among the few young women in recent pop history to have attained worldwide critical and commercial success only to either spin out or retreat in the face of the rigors of fame.

Some, such as former Fugees star Lauryn Hill, continue to perform sporadically, but have been unable (or unwilling) to release a proper follow-up. Others, like Alanis Morissette, survive their moment and go on to solid careers that never quite reach the same zenith. And some live somewhere in between, such as Courtney Love, who cracked up for years before getting clean and continuing her career at a lower orbit, or Fiona Apple, who seemed uninterested in playing the fame game and retreated into privacy, releasing just three albums over a 15-year career.

None of those examples really fit the Winehouse mold, though, according to Jenny Eliscu, a Sirius satellite radio host and Rolling Stone contributing editor who profiled Winehouse for the magazine in 2007, as the singer’s star was about to go supernova.

“It would be easy and understandable to think that this is a phenomenon that afflicts female artists, but the parallel that makes the most sense for me is Kurt Cobain,” she said of the troubled Nirvana singer, who committed suicide at age 27, after years of battling with drugs and struggling to deal with the limelight.

“He had a band to say, ‘What the f—?’ But when you’re solo, it’s entirely your own operation with no one there to keep you in check,” Eliscu said. “You can languish in your problems. … It’s easy to get in your own cave.”

Even if you’re not abusing drugs or alcohol, getting it together to make a follow-up to a huge album is hard. But Eliscu said that if you compound that with the loneliness of being a solo artist, particularly one who probably never expected her authentically pained music to reach such a wide audience, you have a recipe for major trouble.

For every Britney Spears and Lindsay Lohan who spin out after achieving early celebrity, there are Justin Timberlakes and Taylor Swifts, who appear able to handle the pressure. Sophy said that could be because they have that support system in place early on to help them deal with the pressure.

“Someone who is 27 is not necessarily 27 years old emotionally,” said Sophy. “A 27-year-old can often act like an 18-year-old, because oftentimes addicts stop growing emotionally at the age they started using.”

This is something that Maureen Courtney of Breakthrough Retreats supports.

Even if, as father Mitch Winehouse said in a statement released after Amy’s funeral, his daughter had been drug-free for three years, Sophy said it can take a long time for the brain’s chemistry to return to normal long after a patient leaves rehab.

Sophy said that any artist who puts themselves in the spotlight is taking a huge risk, regardless of their sobriety. As they look for affirmation that they’re talented enough, once success begins coming in a rush, it can make them doubt their skills more than ever.

“When they hit it and it becomes a big thing, then there’s more pressure on them and their self-esteem, which might have been an issue to begin with and that’s a bigger mountain to climb,” Sophy explained.

It’s hard for even the most self-assured person to say, “I’m really good at this,” and so, Sophy said, when that doubt creeps in while the world is watching, it sometimes makes it difficult to stay on the straight and narrow without self-medicating or finding some other way to cope with the pressure.   “Instant fame is like a drug,” he said. “It starts out slowly and then you can get a big rush from a big blowup and that little high you got from your first big interview or show is like a drug and you get addicted to the rush and adrenaline. Then you have that big [magazine] feature, and that really sends you over the top. And how do you beat that attention? You have to get another one.”

While Winehouse often seemed unaffected by the attention, if not downright uninterested in it, her music came from what seemed like a genuine wellspring of pain and emotion. Because of that, Eliscu said it’s not surprising that someone in that state of turmoil might retreat into a kind of cocoon of safety and escape the public world they’ve been thrust into.

“When you get to the level of someone like the Jonas Brothers, you have so many people protecting you that you can almost be sheltered from expectations of what people want,” she said. “But [Winehouse] never had that level of structure in place around her. Even after the success of the first album in the U.K., she could never have known how well [Back to Black] would have done.”

With Thanks To and Original article by By Gil Kaufman (MTV USA 2011) http://www.mtv.com/news/articles/1668091/amy-winehouse-death-fame.jhtml

Summer Solstice 2011 at Breakthrough Retreats

There have been strange things happening at Breakthrough HQ this week, and now we know why! We have felt great surges of energy, but at the same time Maureen has been feeling a little under the weather : ( We can of course put this down to today (Tuesday 21st June 2011) being the longest day or Summer Solstice.

We were up early this morning as it got light (Just before 5) and have been enjoying every minute of this cloudy day so far. Maureen has had a client this morning, with whom she has been able to share her gift of light with, so the day has got off to a productive start.

We found this great Summer Solstice definition from Chiff.com (2011).

Sol + stice derives from a combination of Latin words meaning “sun” + “to stand still.” As the days lengthen, the sun rises higher and higher until it seems to stand still in the sky.

As a major celestial event, the Summer Solstice results in the longest day and the shortest night of the year. The Northern Hemisphere celebrates in June, but the people on the Southern half of the earth have their longest summer day in December.

This time of year is great for getting rid of old stuff and turning to the new – Hmmm… a Summer Solstice Retreat for Breakthrough Retreats next year perhaps? What fun! – We could channel some earth energy work, perform Reiki, visualisations and Meditate.

Summer Solstice is a time for reflection, and this quote taken from here – Leads us to this…

But just at this moment of greatest light, we begin to face death, for now the days begin to shorten and the darkness grows.  Solstice literally means “sun stand still”, for at the solstices the sun seems to stop on its course before it reverses itself.

This would explain why Maureen has been feeling a little under the weather then!

Here is a great YouTube video for determining how to measure the tilt of the Earth at 1pm today.

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cuGZpl0lkXU&w=560&h=349]

Alternative Therepy; Dancing Yourself to Happiness; This Morning Report

Breakthrough Retreats take a look at ITV This Morning’s May 2011 feature on alternative therapies with Jo Wood to help us all de-stress:

Dance Yourself to Happiness ITV This Morning

We all strive to find ways to wind down and de-stress so model and entrepreneur Jo Woods, who lives a totally organic lifestyle, is here to introduce three alternative therapies which can help to relax, and banish the blues.

We take a look at Drum Therapy with expert Mark Hunter, Dance Therapy with Chris Linnares and Laughter therapy with Leela Bunce to see how effective they can be at lifting your spirits!

You can see ITV’s This Morning’s Video Report here.

We at Breakthrough Retreats think that this is a great idea – Shimmying your way to happiness! – It certainly puts a spring in Maureen’s step to have a little boogie around her kitchen early in the morning!

Breakthrough Retreats offer an insight into some of these therapies at our exclusive Retreats in great location.

Photo courtesy of ITV This Morning

Spring: From Yangxiety to Yinsight: The Balance of the Equinox

Well, friends, here it is. The long-awaited beginning of spring (Yes, the warm weather is finally here!) and the point of sacred balance between the dark and the light. As Uranus leaves Pisces, where it’s been lurking for the last seven years in Neptunium formlessness, it now moves into Aries, the start of the zodiac, signifying the start of a whole new cycle, with new fire and focus. No wonder we’re getting earthquakes and threats of meltdowns. The fires of transformation are upon us. But how do we ride all this energy with balance and equanimity?

Too much fire can be too much yang, and with all the radiation panic, it seems the whole culture is suffering from yangxiety. Most people are yangedout – too much to do, too much stimulation, moving too fast, and face it, too much masculine paradigm superimposing itself on the natural world.

Isn’t the threat of nuclear radiation pouring into the air, water, and earth near one of the largest and most productive cities in the world enough cause to make us all stop and think about what we are doing and where we are going? (As if we didn’t already have enough reasons!). If this doesn’t do it, what will it take?

What we need for balance is a little yin-sight. Slow down, take some quiet time to reflect, have a nice long bath (or maybe try some water therapy?) and think things through. Emptiness softens, informs, allows new things to come into being, and creates ease. And who couldn’t use just a little more ease in their life as we head round the bend into the future? If Springtime signifies rebirth as well as balance, it may be that balance is necessary for rebirth.

There are many things out of balance in our world, but none quite so long-standing and globally pervasive as the imbalance between masculine and feminine. Here at the Spring Equinox, the Greek Goddess of the Underworld, Persephone, returns to the light and brings back the flowers and greenery—and with them, food for the people and hope for the future. She’s had a long hard winter, birthing the souls of the dead back to life again and living under Hades rules.

So let’s give her some room to distribute her magnificence. Let’s take time to smell the flowers and remember the miracle of spring. Let’s combat global warming with some chill space – less driving, less doing, less stuff. Let the feminine lead a little more in your life – your own feminine side, or the women in your life. You may be surprised that your life gets a little easier as corners turn to curves, hard edges to softness, and that dry job gets a little juicier.

If this yang civilization collapses, we won’t be able to go anywhere or do much of anything. The yin will then predominate, and we’ll be out of balance again in a different direction. So we may as well do it now, while the Divine Partnership that gives birth to all possibilities is still possible.

Love and Light,

Maureen x

P.S We will be releasing the date of our Summer Retreat very soon.

Picture of Persephone courtesy of this site.

Transpersonal Psychology: Mind, Body, and Spirit at Last!

At Breakthrough Retreats we are always looking for ways to help clients with whatever dilemmas face then in their everyday lives.

Maureen has recently began working with a clients whose partner has ADHD – Already a specialist area for Maureen – They have been working closely together with the client actually giving Maureen a few ideas on what she wants!

So at Breakthrough Retreats we have been doing some research into Transpersonal Psychology, Chakras and ADHD. Here are the findings;

Transpersonal Psychology: Mind, Body, and Spirit at Last!

Transpersonal psychology is a branch of psychology that examines the spiritual aspects of the human experience. Modern psychologists and psychiatrists are aware of this branch but most dismiss it.Your spiritual life is crucial for you and others to be happy people. You can’t ignore it because it’s always staring at you in the face.

This isn’t New Age. People are finally waking up and going back to Ancient Wisdom for answers. Too much human experience gets squished down into little intellectual boxes of “rationalism”.

The following picture is an optical illusion. What are you really missing? What are you really seeing?

Chinese Medicine Is Part of the Movement

  • You are a soul. Chinese medicine just happens to have two, one that governs your inner self. The other governs your physical being:
  • The science of the Mind. It explains what the Mind is like when it’s healthy and when there’s illness.
  • Chinese spiritual science explains your behaviour. There are two souls in Chinese philosophy. They are the Ethereal Soul of the Liver and the Corporeal Soul of the Lungs. They are very significant in your life.
  • Your Intellect resides in the Spleen and is responsible for critical thinking, applied thinking, studying, memorizing, concentrating, and generating ideas.
  • Your Will Power which is housed by the Kidneys. It’s responsible for drive, determination, single-mindedness in the pursuit of your goals, enthusiasm, and motivation.
  • Chakras Are another Ancient System That Explains Human Behaviour

Transpersonal psychology leads you to answers. This system is extremely useful for explaining why your life is the way it is. I’ll start with the basics. These include

  • What are chakras? Again, it’s all about energy.
  • Where are the chakra locations? There are 7 of, but not on the body.
  • Chakra definitions. Why they are significant.
  • Chakra colour chart. Each chakra vibrates at a particular frequency or band width.
  • Chakra health. What happens when your chakras are balanced?
  • Chakra blockages. What happens when your chakras are imbalanced?

Transpersonal Psychology and ADHD Autism

Modern medicine says that ADHD and autism are mental problems. BUT they keep looking at the brain for clues for causes. There is nothing consistent about the structure of the brain from “sufferer” to “sufferer”.  At best they are only guessing. And they test out their theories on your children.

All physical “injuries” and accidents originate at your spiritual level. If you keep thinking the same thoughts and repeating the same bad habits, you get into trouble. If you’re not dealing with your mental/emotional issues, then you WILL suffer physical symptoms. The body is always a reflection of your past (at any time instance). The longer you don’t deal with the emotional issues in your life, the harder it becomes for you physically.

If you’re not dealing with your own issues then you WILL pass them down to your offspring. Unless their own consciousness is strong enough to reject yours.  That’s the true meaning of genetics and heredity. That’s why there’s racism, prejudice, and war. That’s why there’s prosperity in some families and poverty in others. It works both ways.

So, transpersonal psychology has the answers that most people are looking for all their problems. Since we at Breakthrough Retreats are most interested in spiritual well-being in anyone we are helping, this is a good way to start. What’s really bothering you? What’s bothering your children?

True Cause and Effect

What you think about most of the time creates your reality. Transpersonal psychology must be taken seriously. Can you afford to continue to disconnect from your very being? Can you afford that for your children?

Depending on your constitution you will develop either mental or physical problems. That’s why something like transpersonal psychology is a breath of fresh air. People who study these aspects realize that there’s a reason why people aren’t healthier.

Transpersonal Psychology Helps You to Connect the Dots

You are different from your children. You are different from any other human being. It comes down to your experiences and how you dealt or did not deal with them. The thing is, you probably haven’t been taught where to start, never mind what to do! Start looking and paying attention to the individual and you start getting answers! Transpersonal psychology is an important step in the right direction. Until proponents of modern medicine start getting out of their head and intellectualizing everything, they will continue to fail to deliver real solutions for ADHD Autism.

You got a quick overview of the chakras here. Then in Stages of Child Development you can look at how the chakras are involved in your development as a human being. You have to connect all the dots: the physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual. This is what Being Human is all about. And really the spiritual is the basis of all health, in all of its forms. That’s because if you’re not dealing with an upset in your life right away then eventually the problem escalates. It escalates until there is pain or disease in the body. You see, your body demonstrates what has happened in the past.

Breakthrough at Breakthrough Retreats; Bulimia Awareness

It has recently been reported that the lovely Lily Allen has revealed that she battled with the eating disorder Bulimia, admitting that she used to make herself sick after meals.

The team at Breakthrough Retreats have taken this news very seriously as we have been dealing with this issue with some of our clients for a while now, and having recently helped a client to get over Bulimia completely with the help of our Eating Disorder Therapist.

This is not a new story to the headlines and something that some ladies (and indeed Men) and their families have to suffer with everyday.

Approximately 1-2 percent of women in the UK suffer from bulimia. Every year there are as many as 18 new cases of bulimia nervosa per 100,000 population per year and between 1 and 3 percent of young women are thought to be bulimic at any given moment in time. (Bulimia Nervosa Stastics UK, Accessed March 2011).

 

These are shocking, but very realistic statistics.

  • It is shocking to think that the average age of onset of bulimia is 18-19 years.
  • Bulimia affects mainly women between the ages of 16 and 40, and is most likely to begin at about 19 years of age. According to some studies, as many as 8 percent of women suffer from bulimia at some stage in their life, and it affects about 5 percent of female college students.
  • People who have close relatives with bulimia are four times more likely to develop the disease than people who do not.
  • Studies indicate that about 5 out of 10 people with bulimia are healthy 10 years after diagnosis; while 2 out of 10 still have bulimia and 3 out of 10 are partially recovered.
  • Approximately 5 percent of bulimia sufferers go on to develop anorexia nervosa.
  • Unlike anorexia, it is not usual to die from the severe health effects of bulimia.

Make yourself aware.

Do you know someone suffering from Bulimia? Give them the support they deserve today.

Love and Light,

Maureen x

 

Photo courtesy of; Image: Ambro / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Riding the Waves of Life…

How often have you thought that you need a little help in sorting out things in your life?

Lots of people are used to joining a gym to look after their bodies however it is a shame that not so many people think about looking after their psychological wellbeing.

“Life is Easy!”

We find that from the experience we have running our company that a solution needs to be tailored to the individual, as, well, every individual is different! Whether this be through coaching, counselling, NLP, the general information given and hypnotherapy sessions, they all should be tailored to the individual for the best possible outcomes. It just works!

It has taken time and energy to master this approach as there is no out of the box solution, there is no magic pill and certainly no quick fix. We are the product of our life experiences and sometimes these experiences diminish our ability to move forward and enjoy our lives the way we are meant to.  Taking time out for ourselves to focus on our needs and solutions is essential.  Giving time to ourselves can be seen to be self indulgent but how can you possibly make anybody happy if you yourself are not happy and living life 100 per cent?

Whether it be a week by the sea in Cornwall, a few days in Hertfordshire or a weekend away at a Country House Hotel/Spa the mind needs nourishment, confidence needs restoration and self esteem (you’ve guessed it!) needs building.

Imagine taking that time out to relax the body!

You may have tried to sort out your life before with limited success but that does not mean that you cannot achieve amazing results if you try again.  There are an array of therapies that are available to achieve accelerated learning and turn people’s lives around quickly.

So, if you are stuck in your life or past experiences are holding you back or you have a phobia you would like to conquer or relationships are problematical or family dynamics a nightmare or suffering a bereavement or have an addiction or weight problem or you are lonely or know your life is not right at work or at home and want it to change – Maybe now is the time to open that mind to what is out there!

Isn’t life wonderful that you needn’t waste a minute before changing your life for the better?

“Having a heart for making a difference means that thing or someone made a difference in my heart first” (Lee Wise)

Love and Light,

Maureen x

Get Back Your Zest For Life!

Are you carrying a little extra weight around the middle?  Maybe you’ve got more than just a little weight problem – maybe it’s a rather large one and you need to get rid of the fat for health reasons.  Rest assured that you’re not alone!

 

Obesity in the UK is at an all-time high.  In the US, one of out of every three American’s is obese – a number that has doubled in just ten years.  This epidemic is growing out of control in other countries as well as fast food franchises open in China, Japan, Germany, and other industrialised nations.

When you are overweight, it’s a serious issue.  Carrying extra weight can make you more susceptible to heart problems, diabetes, stroke, and various types of cancer.  It can also affect your body image as well thus causing problems with your self-esteem.

You deserve to be healthier and take off some of that weight that is making you unhealthy.  But what if you’re like me and love food so you hate the idea of having to eat rice cakes and brussel sprouts or starving yourself just to help the weight come off.

We have good news for you!  You don’t have to starve yourself to lose weight!

Many people associate weight loss with being hungry all the time. They’re afraid to start a weight loss plan because they want to avoid the frustrations of hunger.

And yes, a lot of times for many people they think it’s better to be overweight than to starve. I’m no exception. I really like to eat, so there’s no way I would be constantly hungry for the sake being thin. What kind of life is it if you’re always feeling hungry?

Our natural instinct tells us to eat when we are hungry. Hunger is a signal telling the body that it needs to eat. It is also a signal to the body that it is in danger, that it needs food now. Our self-preservation instinct makes us scarf down everything in sight in response to feelings of starvation.

Our body doesn’t care that we live in the modern world where food is plentiful. It acts the same as it would if we were living in a wild, having to hunt for our food. And it is not wise to go against the instinct that is designed to protect us from starvation death.

So, get ready for a surprise: you do not have to be hungry in order to lose weight. On the contrary, eating regular meals and keeping yourself full is what will actually help you stick to your healthy eating plan and reach your goals. Keeping your hunger in check will help you avoid overeating. It will also prevent you from feeling miserable, frustrated and out of control.

Diet and weight loss is big business these days.  It seems you’re always seeing and hearing ads for weight loss products that promise amazing results.  Some of them have their own meal plans, some are just small little pills that purport to burn fat, and others ask you to cut certain foods out of your diet in order to adjust the body’s metabolism.

The downside to these companies and diet plans is that they can often be expensive.  The pills you take for weight loss can contain dangerous chemicals or have a large amount of caffeine that make you jittery and feel out of control.  The positives are that they are easy to follow and provide you with support when you have questions or just need a positive uplift on the way to your goal weight.

If you want to join these programs, that’s wonderful!  But know that everything they offer you can be done all on your own.

Over the coming months on this blog, we’ll be giving you all kinds of tips and tricks toward successful weight loss.  We’ll examine some common weight loss myths and even give you some great recipes to try while you are on this journey.

It won’t be easy and you’ll have to maintain your willpower to be successful, but losing weight without starving yourself is a goal YOU CAN achieve!

 

You can achieve your Zest for Life!


Maureen x

 

p.s. This is also an excert from my new e-book, due to be released soon…