Honeysuckle - Lonicera x americana, sweet tasting, sweet scented

Honeysuckle - Lonicera x heckrottii

Harlequin honeysuckle - Lonicera x italica, succulant scents of summer

Honeysuckle - Lonicera x italica, The taste of sweet summer flowers
Sessions

See also Private and Intensive Group Retreats.

Who we are and who we become depends upon who and how we love. It is a journey. It is how we meet the deepest longing of our souls.

Sessions offer the space to explore awareness, transform consciousness and re-orientate our lives so that we live from the love that is within all of us, from the core of our authentic selves, respectful and confident of our right relationship with each other and the environment. We can then apply this wisdom individually, within our family relationships and communities and globally, where ever we feel called to contribute.

Sessions may be with individuals, couples or groups and usually take place in your home or that of someone in the work. Retreats are by individual design, usually up to 3 or 4 days. Intensives are 5 days long. See the Calendar for tour dates and locations.

Each experience is unique to the person's process and needs, so there is no formula or "typical" session. The work touches very deep places within people so I hold a clear strong container and discourage the acting out of behaviors that may adversely effect other people in a group. There are other ways to honor whatever energies that may be emerging.

Taking care of yourself before and after sessions.

WHAT HAPPENS IN SESSIONS?

Duration
Breathwork, sandplay and counseling sessions are usually 2-3 hours long. Longer journeys may be up to 8 hours with a couple of hours for integration the following day, which is considered all one session. Phone sessions are available by appointment to those I have already worked with in person and are an hour long.

In the Beginning . . .
there will usually be some discussion as we explore whatever issues you are bringing to the session. During longer sessions, in groups and retreats, we will develop the ways of the work and explore specific themes. These themes are designed to create a new learning environment for you to experience different aspects of consciousness. We meditate, dance, watch films, discuss books or do other processes as an entry point to your exploration.

We share intentions in a way that ritualizes our experience, deepening awareness and building commitment.. It is not necessary to know your intention before you arrive for the session; Often it becomes clear as you experience our initial discussion or in response to the theme of the group.

Usually the session starts with a quiet period, when you are encouraged to focus within. You may close your eyes or not, lie down, sit up, dance or move around inside or go out into nature if you wish. You may enjoy talking and sharing a lot or you may find you are called to go deeply within, to be intimate with yourself.

Music
I use a diverse range of music throughout the session - to calm the mind, to awaken energy through movement and play, to evoke emotional releases and support your feelings, whatever they may be. I may play music and sounds that awaken the heart through beauty, longing and feelings of wonder. Some music is consistent with profound introspection. Other playlists are designed to disturb you, evoke specific feelings or teach you how to change your emotions. Sometimes there is just the silence...

Techniques . . .
may include intuitive inquiry to deepen your body and emotional awareness, breath work, sounding, dream exploration, tantra and sacred sexuality exploration, various states of trance and meditation, role play, psychodrama, gestalt and voice dialogue, sandplay, dance, bioenergetic exercises, shamanic journeying, stillness, prayer and exploring the enchantment of nature. I give you permission to go wherever you need to go within your psyche, whether you need to untangle confusion and connect with the source of your imbalance, or you may need to expand your consciousness and let your life force flow freely, with joy and laughter. Play and experiences of wholeness and joy are just as much a part of the work as the challenging stuff.

What you may Experience
Whilst we may spend some time talking, it is the experience of yourself that is important. There may be times when you feel deeply, expressing whatever it is that has been stuck, be it pleasure and/or pain. You may open to lost memories, altered states of perception, experience new energy and expand your sense of Self. You may have spiritual or mystical experiences, feel as if you are being reborn or experience feeling without any story. Time may seem to flow more slowly or hours can seem like a moment. The past may seem to be more real than the present or you may have insights into possible futures.

Often old emotional distress is first felt as a physical sensation, so the body may feel things before you can emotionally express them. There could be experiences of tightness, tingling in the extremities and contraction of the body, vibrations or muscle tremors, the need to shake the limbs and move. Some people feel cold or excessively hot, an indication of energy moving through the feminine or masculine channels. There can be sensitivity to lights, smells, touch and sounds. Some people may at times feel a little nauseous when there is fear present or they are really sick of something in their lives. Sometimes people may re-experience old injuries and pains or experience new feelings about current circumstances, bringing a sense of insight and surprise.

Where appropriate you may dialogue with people in your current life or the past, as if they are present with you now, which they are - inside your mind and heart. You can reclaim lost parts of yourself through dialogues with people, pets, places and objects, using them as symbols or as aspects of yourself. You may have transpersonal conversations with God or goddesses, archetypes or animal spirits, with beings from other worlds or any other creature that may or may not exist in anyone else's reality.

In Groups
At the beginning of the experience in a group session, I encourage people to take some time to go be with themselves, to go deeply within, to explore the inner landscapes and gain deeper self knowledge. Later on, most people share their stories and experiences with each other. As people become more experienced in this work, they are able to work with each other so that together we create a rich learning environment. It is through these interactions that we get to see how we create our experiences and become more whole through relationship.

Some people prefer to be out in nature or simply remain quiet with others in a contemplative state. For some, there is a need to remain in a quiet space because they are too sensitized, need more privacy or are distracted by too much chatter.

Group  Safety:
I suggest as a matter of confidentiality that the names of those attending groups and retreats are not discussed with folks outside the group. People may be very vulnerable afterwards and it is an act of care to respect their boundaries. I ask participants to refrain from sharing about other's experiences, even to those in the work, unless they have specific permission to do so. You can share as much as or as little as you like about your own sessions but be mindful to whom you are speaking and their ability to hold your experience and the work in a sacred way.

As an added layer of safety,, if you meet people later, check in with them and ask if they are in a place to talk with you about the group, as there may be reasons why they cannot do so at that very moment.

Sexuality:
As part of the work, people open up to their energy and often experience sexual feelings. It is a natural part of the awakening process. If this happens in a group or retreat, people are encouraged to own their experience internally, to enjoy it by dancing and feeling it but not through  acting it out with others. THERE IS TO BE NO SEXUAL CONTACT, EXPLICIT LANGUAGE OR NUDITY IN GROUP SESSIONS. You are welcome to be intimate in the privacy of your own room or wait until the session has finished and then go play or organize a private tantra session.

This limitation encourages you to create container for yourself by reclaiming your energy with healthy boundaries, to be sensitive to the needs of others in the group and to awaken to the power of learning to channel your energy in different ways.

Sexual behavior in group sessions does affect everyone whether you are aware of it or not and so many people have suffered abuse, incest and lack of respect and clear boundaries in their tender  formative years. We are exploring new learning environments not trying to recreate and re-enact the wounds of the past. Learning to master the flow of your sexual energy opens up a freedom of choice that is restricted by a culture that focusses on instant gratification of needy demands and outward expression over feeling.

Technology:
It is strongly recommended that you organize yourself so that you can turn your phone and computers off for the duration of any retreat or group session. It is a RETREAT, meaning you do not bring your whole technological existence in with you. As part of this dedication to presence and awareness, cameras, ipods, phones, computers or other electronic devices are not welcome during session and integration times.

This limitation will quickly reveal addictive behaviors and the associated fears that are wonderful grist for your process. However this is more than just that. It is an invitation to let go reliance on external technologies so that you can remember the powerful ways the heart can communicate, across distance and time, so you always feel connected and not subliminally afraid that you will be unsafe if our frail technological world is subjected to Nature's wild forces.

My Role
I mindfully observe and feel each person's experience guiding them through the places of energetic, emotional and physical blocks, coaching them to feel and become self aware of the patterns which bind them. By feeling deep empathic resonance with people, I model healthy emotional patterns, assisting them to relax into their authenticity and constellate their own new bio-resonant choices. By creating a safe, loving space and a field of learning and play, I open doorways to new possibilities, awakening appreciation, wonder and awe for this dance called Life. Sometimes this is done verbally, often it is an energetic core spiritual experience.

Towards the End. . .
the music becomes quieter and you will have some time to rest. If there has been a lot of talking, it may be a good time to be quiet. If there has been a lot of movement, let the body relax and be still. As these sessions are sometimes intense or quite long, there is usually some nourishment:  a cuppa' tea, a snack or soup or whatever you need to graze on before leaving. This not only nourishes the body but also feeds the heart and soul and helps you get grounded.

At the end of a breath work or sandplay session, many people find that drawing further expresses their experience, helping them to ground the energy and to create a record so they can reconnect with it again later on.

Integration

Integrations for both private and group sessions are a essential completion as we share our experiences. Sometimes there are deep feelings expressed after the opening of the evening before. This is why the integration is considered the final part of any session. Each person is given the opportunity to make sense of and complete their experience and discover what practices, disciplined actions or new attitudes will allow the session to be integrated into life and your relationships.

This work creates a shift from the more logical left side of the brain to the holistic right side that governs imagination and intuition. It shifts the dominance of the mind to more heart and body centered awareness, open to direct experience of the spiritual nature of life, supporting your brain's natural plasticity. It is the application of your experience in life that allows real changes to happen.  These can be quite simple or may involve life changing decisions.

Part of the integration process involves developing greater awareness of the relationship between the young hurt places we carry inside of us and our caring mature self. It may also involve developing conscious dexterity in the flow between feelings and thoughts and the movement of the body with the spirit.

You may find it helpful to seek additional help from other practitioners for dietary, medical and physical concerns. Based on your specific needs, you may be guided to study relevant materials, watch issue specific movies, engage in contemplative meditation practices or connect feelings with new ideas. I may suggest that you listen to music, be in nature more, explore home play assignments of a sexual nature or support your emerging creativity through various movement practices or art projects, whatever it takes for you to care for yourself more truly.

Many of the colors and symbols which emerge during sessions have deep meaning which continue to speak through dreams and meditations and surprisingly often show up in ordinary life in songs, the media and in conversations. They become living images, greatly enhancing our experiences, if we pay attention to them.

Checking Back In
After discovering the threads that will help us become more conscious, it is important to occasionally check back in with ourselves to see if and how our practices and self discipline are fostering love, our growth and self care. The checking in can be through simple awareness of ourselves, or through dreams and the images that are being generated in life, through our health and well being, the amount and flow of our energy or by the way we encounter resistance.

Follow up phone calls, with me and with others in your group, and phone sessions also provide you with ongoing integration, loving support and a sense of belonging. Being with and sharing the journey with like minded souls is an integral aspect of the process, one that many people crave.

Frequency of Sessions
Most clients learn to appreciate that the depth and power of this work requires gradual integration and it takes time to mature and be open to the adventure of a heart full, energy rich, mature life. Regular groups meet once each season to explore different aspects of an annual theme. Each person's rate of growth and integration is organic and, as I prefer to be open to their rhythms, private sessions are arranged only as needed.

Client Experiences Session Care

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