Monday, October 28, 2013

Depression-One Woman's Journey on the Road to Joy

Recently I talked about healing as restoring yourself to a state of balance that you are happy with. The World Health Organization states that 121 million adults around our world have depression and that 47% of all adults have headaches. Researchers in the US have determined that 60 million people are burdened with feelings of isolation and loneliness.1 Clearly,too many are in distress and are not able to find their way out of it.

The following is the story of a 50 something woman who was experiencing depression, headaches and isolation. Life had worn her down. She found a creative way to restore herself and became happy, healthy and whole.

Kate’s four children were almost out of the house when her second marriage ended in a stressful divorce.  Later, she tried another relationship which just didn’t work out. There had been a long period of recovery from a painful shoulder injury. Then three beloved family members died in a short period of time….

Kate began to have bad headaches, she felt isolated and depressed. It was like a heaviness or a dark vortex was coming to suck her down. Things that had always helped her feel in balance- like her art work were no longer possible. 

She knew she had to get away from the dreadful dark feelings that were pressing her down. Kate decided to go within and through prayer she called on her higher power.

Over the next few days Kate remembered how much she loved riding on her brother’s motorcycle in high school-a Honda 750. Quite spontaneously she was guided to look through the local ads at motorcycles for sale.

A beautiful fire engine red 2004 Harley Davidson XLH 883 Sportster Hugger captured her heart and everything fell into place.

She remembers saying to herself “If you don’t get this now- you will never do this! Do this for yourself the kids are all grown.”

Kate enrolled in a motorcycle safety class to learn how to ride. She passed the written part of the class easily but found that she was too nervous to make turns successfully. Kate didn’t pass the riding part of the exam but she had 90 days to take it over. She got her learner’s permit and began to practice her turns. 

“Lord, I am so nervous. I’m 54 years old. I am scared. What am I doing? Am I insane? Help me Lord.”

It took her two weeks to get out of her neighborhood and onto to the street to make it down to the park where she could pratice safely.  Within a few weeks she was able to begin riding around and discovered the back roads away from the traffic. 

"My excitement got rid of my fear. As I developed my skills I experienced sheer pleasurable joy riding on my own. From the deepest source of my being that joy would flow up like a fountain. Your joy takes you away from your hard places. For me the wind in my face lifted that heavy darkness.  I was moving forward my higher power was guiding me.  I was singing, laughing, praying inside my helmet.

Letting my higher power guide me and following its message changed my life and gave me freedom from the responsibility of life. There have been no more headaches. My depression and isolation are gone."

 6 1/2 months later as an accomplished fully licensed rider Kate traded up for her 1200cc Custom Harley Sport Cruiser. Kate also discovered that chocolate was the cause of her headacches so she doesn't have it very often. She began to meet new people and joined the Christian Motorcycle Association ( which led to many new adventures. Since then Kate has had the opportunity to act as a spiritual counselor for women in prison and women everywhere inspiring them with her wisdom to find new meaning in their own lives.

Kate found a way to heal her body, mind and soul and exchanged her depression, headaches and isolation for a life of joy, satisfaction and freedom. I hope Kate’s story of what brought her the greatest healing will be inspiring for you.

How did you learn to listen to your feelings and discover what would give  you- your healing successes? Do you have a story of healing or know of someone who would like to share their healing success?  To connect with Kate send your message to me in my comments box or at the email address listed above. I will forward it to Kate so she can get back to you.


1. Cacioppo, John T.; Hawkley, Louise C. (2009). "Perceived social isolation and cognition". Trends in Cognitive Sciences 13 (10): 447–54. doi:10.1016/j.tics.2009.06.005.PMC2752489. PMID19726219.

You might also enjoy: Healing From a Place of Wholeness
                                     The Best Advice to Create Joy in Your Life




Monday, October 21, 2013

4 Out of 10 Americans May Be Obese-What 2 of Them Did About It.

Justin & Lauren, Sept. 2011
Not long ago I wrote about obesity rates and how our world is getting wider. 4 out of 10 Americans are overweight and since 1980 worldwide obesity rates have doubled.  Overweight & obesity are the 5th highest cause of death in the world.
Medical emergencies related to weight served as the wake up call for Justin & Lauren Shelton-two young Americans who decided to solve the problem of their own obesity. This is their story from an interview I did with Lauren.

"Both Justin and I were always bigger than the other kids. We each faced different challenges. It’s easy to be in denial and not realize that you are getting bigger that it’s actually happening. And then one day you say “wow-how did I get this way?” When we faced the medical emergencies we realized we had to take responsibility and the only way for us to lose weight was to do it for ourselves.

Everyone has to find what works for them. Anyone can do it. Stay positive and keep at it. You may make slips or mistakes or sometimes eat that donut. Justin can set his mind to not eating unhealthy things and just not eat them. For me it was a mental battle. I was a stress eater and needed more motivation. We had each other to help with the hard times. We understood each other and never judged one another as a failure.

Many have never struggled with looking sloppy in clothes no matter what you wear or the seat belts that don’t fit around you. Not being able to sit in regular chairs. All of this makes you feel bad about yourself and can even make you eat more. I used to be afraid to say no."

How they did it: Justin and Lauren got help from a supervised weight loss program. They began to follow healthy eating guidelines and started walking around the park and swimming. They kept track of everything they ate with a smart phone program and learned new recipes for healtier versions of foods they loved. The first month Justin lost 25 pounds and Lauren lost 30. Soon they were able to join a gym and began exercising 5-6 days a week at the gym. They used their weekend time for fun activities like hiking or swimming. Their food plan consisted of vegetables, fruits and lean meats. They still follow this diet and keep a record of all that they eat. Weekly weigh ins and keeping track of their progress on a graph helped them stay motivated and get through the hard times.

"Neither of us ever saw ourselves as small people-by doing this together we were able to support each other…learning about healthy foods and learning how to say no to the unhealthy foods and all the hard work. Sometimes there are psychological issues that come up when you go through a big physical change like this."
What is the greatest gift you received from this journey?

"My greatest gift is happiness and learning to love myself. No matter how many times bad things have happened. You can turn it around. Even if you are unhappy with yourself you can learn to love yourself no matter what size you are-you don’t need to hate yourself. If I can do it-you can."

Justin & Lauren Shelton, Septeber 2013-together they lost 572 pounds.

Justin & Lauren are happy to share what they have learned:
Or email Lauren at:

If you like what you see on this blog, I'd appreciate your thoughts.
You can email or use the comments box below.

You might also enjoy: What Does Healing Mean?
                                    Weightloss Breakthrough and Overcoming Sugar
                                    Addictions with Ganesha Mantra

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Healing with "Creative Voice -the Circle of Song Playshop"

What activity-
*boosts your immune system        
*stimulates circulation
*releases endorphins to make you feel energized *exercises your lungs, abdominals and diaphragm
*increases oxygen intake                   
*improves aerobic capacity
*relieves tension
*balances your thyroid gland
*regulates digestion  &  blood sugar levels    
*brings good sleep
*and makes you feel happy?1
Better than yoga, tai chi, jogging or hula hooping-Singing in community or singing in a group brings all these benefits and more……
Now ask yourself-is it time for a change? Could I possibly feel happier, more empowered and have more freedom? If you answered yes-you are the ideal person for a wonderful opportunity.
Explore the personal joy of singing in community. Connect with your own divine voice and give yourself permission to just be....No athletic ability is required and there is no age limit. Join Claire Victor-singer, songwriter, music director, and educator:
 for “Circle of Song” playshop
          Saturday Nov. 2nd 1-5pm
          Center for Spiritual Living Santa Rosa
          2075 Occidental Road Santa Rosa, Ca 95401
Cost:$40 until Oct. 30 or $45 at door. 707-527-8572
           (advanced registration strongly suggested)
When we listen to our heart we can hear the voice of Love.
When we follow our inner voice it always leads us home.
Claire Victor


Monday, October 14, 2013

Signs that You May Have a Thyroid Problem

Mister Bluebird on my shoulder
It's the truth, it's actch'll
Ev'rything is satisfactch'll
Zip-a-dee-doo-dah, zip-a-dee-ay
Wonderful feeling, wonderful day!
(Song of the South-1946)

Raise your hand if you feel peppy like these lyrics when you wake up? Yes, no, maybe sometimes?

If you don’t have enough energy and feel like you’re missing a sense of well-being -you might want to check your thyroid.  The World Health Organization estimates that over 200 million people around the world are challenged by thyroid disease. This is one health problem that often goes untreated because people are used to feeling out of sorts.

Are you waking up tired, run down or just plain blue. Your thyroid health affects your sense of wellbeing, vitality and outlook. Take a look at some of the top indicators of thyroid imbalance.  You’ll notice some of these symptoms seem to be the opposite of one another. That’s because this is a symptom list for both underactive and overactive thyroid problems.

  • Fatigue even after 8-10 hours of sleep                      
  • Inability to lose weight-unexplainable weight gain            
  • Difficulty swallowing or chronic sore throat
  • Constipation

  • Cold hands&feet-feeling cold regardless of how warm others feel
  • Dry skin, brittle nails, hair loss
  • Unexplainable hoarseness-sore throat                               
  • Bags under the eyes 
  • Outer third of eyebrow is overly thin                           
  • Muscle and joint pain
  • Brain fog, poor memory, focus                                         
  • Mood swing, anxiety, depression
  • Overly sensitive to heat-hot weather                                
  • Increased Appetite
  • Low sex drive, PMS, irregular or heavy menstrual periods 
  • Restlessness, increased sweating
  • Rapid-unexplainable weight loss                                    
  • Too frequent bowel movements


If you have 4 or more of these symptoms do a basal temperature test on yourself at home. Basal temperature measures your body’s metabolism levels first thing in the morning. If it runs below 98 degrees you may have a sluggish metabolism which is an indicator of a possible thyroid imbalance.

Basal Temp Test: First thing as you wake up- before you get out of bed to urinate- take your temperature while you are calm and quiet. Put the thermometer under your arm- not under your tongue as this is a more accurate indicator of your body’s metabolism. Record your temps for at least 3 days.

It's possible for your basic blood work to indicate a normal thyroid yet these symptoms can persist. So talk to your health practitioner about your symptoms and your basal body temperature if it’s low. There are other tests that can be done to help determine if your thyroid and you could use some help. It is common for thyroid  problems to develop slowly over time and it might not be so noticeable until you realize that you are feeling poorly.

All I’m saying is be wise, be well and if you not feeling so great or struggling with some of these issues-think about your thyroid.

You might also enjoy:  Your Thyroid Gland and You

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Strung with Love-Making Prayer Malas

Every religion uses prayer and meditation yet they have something else they share. Many religions have a tradition of using beads or something like beads to count prayers, chants, mantras and affirmations. Catholics call their beads the rosary. Muslims pray using their Misbaha or Tasbih beads.  In Judaism worshippers count the knots on their prayer shawls. Hindus and Buddhists chant mantras and meditate with malas.

Recently I wrote about using chants to bring healing, improve well being, break through obstacles, calm the mind, restore vitality and even help with weight loss and sugar addictions. It  can be helpful to use prayer mala beads when you chant, pray or practice your affirmations. Mala is the Sanskrit word for garland.  With a prayer mala, you can stay focused in reciting mantras, prayers and affirmations. As you move your fingers along the beads your hands are slightly engaged- providing a place to release energy and allowing the mind to relax. So there is no worry about how many recitations you have completed and no need to focus on the clock.

“You pass the beads across your fingers, bead by bead, with each repetition of the mantra. If your mind wanders, the activity of the hand or the touch of the bead will remind you of the mantra. The rhythm becomes more compelling, the experience more total as your body works in harmony with the mind.”
Ram Daas 

Traditional mala beads are made from wooden beads, seeds and semi-precious stones. You can be creative in designing your own set of mala beads to make it unique and meaningful for your own purpose.

You are invited to learn how to make your own prayer malas, to chant with them and to discover how your mala beads can be powerful for you. 

Strung with Love-Making Prayer Malaas
with Sue Robson

Date: Saturday, August 16th
 Time: 10 am to 1 pm
 Center for Spiritual Living Santa Rosa
 2075 Occidental Road Santa Rosa, Ca 95401

To enroll online:Prayer Mala Workshop

You can connect with Sue or get more information about her workshop and Prayer Malas at:!/PrayerMalas

I use rudraksha and coral mala beads as part of my spiritual practice. I would love to hear how you use your malas. You can leave your comments below or email me at the address listed above.

Monday, October 7, 2013

What Does Healing Mean?

To me healing is about restoring yourself to a state of balance that you are happy with.  I believe it is you who does the healing of your own body, mind and soul regardless of who participates with you as your health coach. It is not something that can be based on other people’s ideas of how you should be.
Happy with yourself?
Does your vision of who you are sync with your idea of what health is for your body?
Healing comes from within -from the center of your being. No matter what diet, remedy, medication, or technique you use to restore your state of balance-- your own body needs to have enough time and focus to perceive whether what  you are doing or how you have changed your input-is working for you.
Point of Balance
Balance happens when your energy level, creativity level and sense of well being meet within you to create a state of buoyancy. Can you go for several  hours at a time simply feeling good not only about yourself but also feeling  good no matter what you are doing? If so then you have reached a point of balance that is right for you!
How do you get to this state? Learn to listen to your body…… Most people are walking around feeling tired, run down, in pain, depressed, over weight or wondering why they have so little energy. Unless you are feeling absolutely in love with yourself as far as your health goes; you probably need some restoration. 
We can learn to listen to how we feel inside ourselves.  What do you want for your body, mind and soul? What if anything are you willing to change? What are you already doing that feels very good for you? It may take some time for these answers to become clear to you. 
I am interested in helping people feel better. That is why I wrote the articles on healing with chanting, detoxing your body, practicing gratitude  & finding joy. These are valuable tools for restoration and learning about yourself.
You can read them here: Discover Your Best Healing
                                     Who Needs Clinical Detox?
                                     The Best Advice to Create Joy in Your Life

“Be just the balm you need to heal what ails you”

                                                                      Heather Davis




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