Love, Relationships & Family Breakthrough

“How to create outstanding Relationships in every area of your life”

Anytime two people meet, a third world is formed, a different universe that’s unlike any you’ve ever known. Appreciating and cherishing that world is what allows you to transform your life and your Relationship.
boswedden house
Love has a spiritual quality that most of us only touch on a few times in our lives – When we really love someone, there’s a dynamic change that occurs with us: we stop focusing on ourselves.When you are in Love with someone, the first thing that happens is that time disappears. Then you find that you need nothing else because you’re getting exactly what you need! The third thing that happens is that you disappear. It is not about you anymore – and that is when you experience your greatest joy.But pretty soon, things can change; you begin creating expectations about how your Relationship should be. You try to bend this wild, unexplored spiritual territory to your will, trying to force it to fit your own expectations and requirements, instead of simply growing along with it. You start creating rules and measuring whether the Love you’ve receiving is enough or not.

In other words, it becomes all about you, and that’s when Love starts to die.

This has nothing to do with how long you’ve been together; it has to do with a pattern. Once you develop a Belief System, you find a way to fulfill it. This happens not just in our most intimate Relationships but also with our children, our friends, people we work with.

When you are connecting with others you have a model for how they should be. If they don’t match your model, you start questioning everything:

  • Have I lied to myself?
  • Have they said they Love me but they don’t?
  • Are my expectations too high?
  • Am I not beautiful enough?
  • Successful enough?
  • Smart enough?
  • Am I Not Enough?
These are the deep, internal questions that most people don’t want to answer or answer too quickly and easily just to get closure.What makes people so sad and depressed about their Relationship is their learned helplessness. They don’t know how to win. They start to win – they get so much joy out of the Love they receive – but then they begin to believe it doesn’t last. It’s not that it doesn’t last, it that they don’t understand the dynamics of what creates that chemistry and keeps it alive.For a decade I have been obsessed with answering the question, what makes people do what they do? Why is it that so many of us say we want to serve, to Love, to help someone, we want a Relationship, but every day we do either something that keeps us from moving forward or something that actually moves us in the opposite direction.

I’ve worked with hundreds of people in different countries, helping them figure out who they really are, what they want their life to really represent, and where the meaning is for them. How do we learn from the life challenges we face and then master them? How do we end up on the other side, where we don’t just protect our life, our identity, or our ego, but transcend what stops and limits us?

Here’s your choices: Give up, Live in fear, be mad with everybody else, Run for cover, and live in anxiety – Or do what’s necessary to develop the muscle to live your life at the richest level you’ve ever dreamed of, in a place you never would have gotten to if these challenges had not shown up.

The quality of your life comes down to one question: How deep are you willing to go? 

All Happiness comes from one word, Progress. We grow or we die. There is no other choice, and life’s problems and our Relationships give us the biggest challenges to grow. Because nowhere else does our deepest fear show up: That we are not enough. To feel like we are worthless is to feel like we are dead psychologically, emotionally, and spiritually.

I see this fear in action everyday.

In my workshops and Retreats, I interact constantly with people who are suicidal, suffering from life long depression, facing divorce or bankruptcy, people who have lost their children or spouses, or have been traumatised by rape or sexual abuse. In each case, I’m on the stop in the laboratory of life.

As a psychotherapist, I’ve learned how to mobilise instantly and figure out what’s really going on, what’s stopping someone, what he or she needs, and how to create a shift.

We have called this Retreat Love, Relationship & Family Breakthrough because most people, at some point, feel stuck in the patterns of their Relationships whatever your challenges are, this Retreat will bring you to a place clarity, insight, and results.
boswedden house
In this Love, Relationship & Family Breakthrough Retreat you’ll learn how you can recapture, rekindle, or deepen Love in any intimate Relationship.
I’ll show you how to communicate with your spouse, children, and others in ways that invigorate and motivate them to take positive action. You’ll also find ways to resolve long-standing, persistent conflicts between family members simply by making a change within yourself.I’m confident that this Retreat will start you on that journey with more momentum than you’d ever imagined possible, simply because it’s based on real-life experiences and real people.
You can find out more here.Excerts from Relationship Breakthrough: How to Create Outstanding Relationships in Every Area of Your Life by Chloe Madness with introduction from Tony Robbins (2009) Rodale Books


New Year, New You

It has been an exciting year at Breakthrough Retreats, we have had so many “firsts” to celebrate!

We have had so many enquiries for our “Surviving Christmas” Retreat.  It must be that this is always a stressful time for families as well as people on their own.

We have widened our choice of venue and this has proved a good move and we have some very complimentary responses. But our love for the sea and Cornwall takes us back there time after time, there is no doubt it is a very special environment for mind, body and spirit.

Maureen is currently working on a series of CDs for self-hypnosis – so watch this space.

The whole team has put together a “Zest for Life Program” that can work as a one to one Retreat or in a group situation so if this interests you please register your interest with us and we will send you details when we can launch it. It is all about looking after yourself and having a healthy lifestyle.

Don’t forget that as well the Retreats we are able to offer telephone counselling, We are currently offering, a telephone counselling package, buy 5 half hour sessions and get an extra one free.

If you have any ideas for short courses you would like to do please let us know and we can probably come up with something! We always like to hear from you so whether you are booking a Retreat or not! Go to “contact us” and keep in touch, speak to you soon!

Boom Time For Therapists As Stress Soars Among Young City Workers

Work patterns changed beyond recognition in a decade, occupational stress the norm, few benefit from technology’s ease: can Britain ever take it easy again?

With the pressure of few shopping days till Christmas, financial worries and frantic lifestyles of expectation, social-media and the ‘now’, all ages feel under stress. In-Deed, an online conveyancing company published a November 2011 survey saying that selling or buying a house ages people by two years. They didn’t find how much stress people suffer who can’t sell their homes.

How much is healthy, creative stress and how much is destructive? More of the latter has far-reaching consequences for our legislation, legal / educational / welfare / employment / transport systems. In short, for our whole way of life.

Most employed accept some occupational stress. When a social worker’s stress is classified as ‘industrial injury’, there’s a view that pressure on caring professions may be greater than others. Or that it wasn’t recognised before.

The Prime Minister or cabinet colleagues taking a break causes criticism, as if they have abandoned their macho-credentials by having a holiday. Others think they are better at their jobs if they take regular rests. Will Britain be better for a seasonal respite from politics?

Clearly, the 24-hour world doesn’t slow, issues don’t stop piling, cries for government ‘to do something’ don’t diminish. But all things in perspective is the way to better government at home and abroad.

Pay Not Necessarily the Issue

There was widespread amazement (early November 2011) that Lloyds Banking Group chief executive Antonio Horta-Osario was taking time off, suffering ‘extreme fatigue’. People thought an £8 million salary package and only eight months into the job would mitigate his stress.

When incoming chief of Ofsted, the government’s education watchdog, Sir Michael Wilshaw, announced that teachers should be allowed sabbaticals to ‘return to the classroom refreshed’, many people outside education assumed that 13 weeks annual holiday, reasonable salary and pension would be refreshment enough.

Eyebrows were raised when Robin Henry wrote in the Sunday Times (Nov 2011) that stress was ‘soaring among young City workers’. Medics expect to diagnose burnout in midlife, now ‘twentysomethings, the cream, of the crop in top-paid jobs’ find stress levels ‘wrecking their lives’.

Salary aside, stress is a problematic issue of our times. Anhedonia is the condition that prevents, according to Henry, ‘sufferers deriving any pleasure from their lives’. Insomnia, drug abuse, anxiety and depression are increasing.

Robert Colvile highlighted the growing problem of British stress in the Daily Telegraph (November 2011), asking ‘how much more can we take?’ He showed that more than half state-sector teachers take an annual average 9 days sick: ‘they can’t all be faking it’. It was a problem he felt can’t be ‘brushed under the carpet’.

The Climate

Colvile and others cited the ‘excuse’ of the economic climate. Banking isn’t the only sector suffering uncertainties, cutbacks, media hostility and stressed staff. The Eurozone crisis, the general global economic outlook, shortage of resources, price pressures and constant demands from a data/social media/instant culture affect everybody.

Psychology Today defines stress as: ‘reaction to a stimulus that disturbs our physical or mental equilibrium’. They say it’s an omnipresent part of life. A stressful event can trigger the ‘fight-or-flight’ response, causing hormones like adrenalin and cortisol to surge through the body. ‘A little bit of stress is exciting—it keeps us active and alert. But chronic stress can have detrimental effects on health’.

Individual and family financial stress is also increasing, further affecting health. Worries about rising winter energy bills, paying mortgages/rent and job/pension insecurities increase drinking, smoking, overeating and encourage unhealthy ‘coping’ activities.

With less money, people cut corners on personal care, healthy food and quality personal/family time and may borrow beyond their means. Anxiety and sleep loss exacerbates poor cognitive abilities and immune functioning, so stress is part of a truly vicious circle. This in turn leads to more public money needed for symptom treatment.

Policy Issues

Therefore, stress is not only an economic or behavioural indicator, it’s political. More people are depressed during the darker days of winter, (Seasonal Affected Disorder), and the mood of the nation is not only an opinion poll influencing elections, but a pointer for government priorities.

The quantity of assessing/testing children and teenagers (school and national tests, exams and regular target-driven monitoring) sets some off with stress and anxiety. For most, the joys of learning for learning sake without justification by assessment are a historical quirk.

Searching for work in a shrinking economy where employers demand the sort of experience young people neither have nor can acquire without a job is also stressful. The classification of thousands of young people into ‘NEETS’ (not in education, employment or training) is damning and glib, if technically accurate.

When business leaders and politicians show signs of stress-influenced behaviour and extreme emotional and physical fatigue, what can be done? Film of haggard, drained leaders emerging punch-drunk from marathon summits to solve impossible problems, do nobody any favours. Indeed, the world is suffering ‘summit fatigue’ now.

If stress is part of life and a fast-moving, constantly changing world is where we live, there’s surely a limit to antidotes politicos can convincingly offer?

Stress Relievers

The internet is awash with sites offering methods/potions as the panacea for stress. BootsMD offer tips including: maintain a positive attitude, accept events beyond anybody’s control, be assertive instead of aggressive, express feelings/opinions/beliefs rather than become angry or defensive.

They urge people to exercise regularly, try meditation/yoga/tai-chi, eat healthily, mange time effectively, set limits, make time for interests and social support and seek mental health treatment as needed.

And of course, to book a Breakthrough Retreat!


Daily Telegraph, Robert Colvile, The stress of life takes its toll. 2 November 2011. Web 3 Nov 2011.

Sunday Times, Robin Henry, Boom time for therapists as stress soars. 6 November 2011.

BootswebMD. August 2009. Web 3 November 2011.

Stress Management Society. Web 4 November 2011.

Psychology Today. Web 7 November 2011.

Television news reports on teacher stress, April 2010. Web 7 November 2011.

Main Article By: Suite101. Stress Could Be the Next Key Factor in British Politics.

Christmas. Bring it on!

Handling Christmas with confidence and style. Christmas is the most stressful time of the year. Always hated it? Dread it because loved ones are no longer around to share it with you? Trying to recapture the magic of Christmas? All the good things can be gift wrapped just for you in time for Christmas.

We at Breakthrough Retreat take this crisis on board. We aim with one of our suggested residential group or 1 to 1 Retreats to devise a Christmas survival package just for you and your circumstances so you can go away actually looking forward to the festive season with a Christmas hamper of psychological tools.

Please do check out our website for more information.

Where is the Sparkle in Your Life?

Have you met people who make an instant positive impression on you? Learn how to be that. When you sparkle and learn to love yourself, new people come into your life and the people in your life will treat you differently.

Grow confidence.  Fill your life with love and laughter. Celebrate all your successes by understanding yourself; you will be amazed at the rapport you can build with others.

Breakthrough Retreats will rekindle your flame.

Indian Summer

Sometimes we are given a second chance or given something good that we are not expecting or feel we do not deserve to spend time learning how to take advantage of unexpected bounty. We all get opportunities in life, learn how to recognise them and use them to transform your life.

indian summer at breakthrough retreats

A residential retreat may be the key to designing an exquisite life plan that you can use to then transform your life. Can you afford not to discover your true life path? Capture the best of what’s gone before and move forward to the life you are meant to have.

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…