Thinking About Thinking

Well it seems that Autumn happened in Melbourne while I was away last week. Yesterday morning was 11 degrees. Brrrr… that’s fresh. I have to acclimatise after my week in sunny Queensland.  At least we had beautiful blue skies yesterday.

I hope you’re enjoying the school holidays so far.  If you have children these next two weeks might be a good time to bring them into our shop. We find that many primary school age kids are drawn to the crystals and have an intuitive sense of what they need. During the holidays your child is welcome to come in and choose one of our big selection of tumble stones as a free gift from us. (One per child)

Our practitioners are all happy to work with children so these school holidays might also be a good opportunity to make an appointment for your child if they have any health issues. A short Reiki session. or Shiatsu Massage where they keep their clothes on can be great for children. Or if you have a VCE student a regular massage throughhout the year can help enormously to keep them calm and focussed.

I must admit I’ve seen quite a few children recently for Hypnotherapy. It’s quite concerning how many young children these days struggle with anxiety. They tend to respond beautifully to Hypnosis (or Guided Meditation) combined with Homeopathic Remedies or Naturopathy to support their nervous system.

On Facebook last week I found a link to an article about teaching mindfulness in schools.  It was titled “How two minutes of mindfulness can calm a class and boost attainment”.  Click HERE if you’d like to read it.

It’s so important to teach children some strategies to manage their emotions and mindfulness is a very safe and simple technique that doesn’t conflict with any religious beliefs.  All children need to do is stop and be calm and listen.

Many years ago I met a GradeThree teacher from a school in Blackburn. She was one of the pioneers of using meditation in schools. She was using it on a daily basis with her class. This teacher told me that at the start of the year the children could only sit still, keep their eyes closed and stay quiet for a couple of minutes, if that. By the end of the year they could easily manage 30 minutes and they really loved it. She said they behaved so much better, were happier, could concentrate and they learned better.

The article I read says that mindfulness changes the structure and function of the brain.  Research shows that when well taught and when practiced regularly mindfulness has been shown to improve mental health and wellbeing, mood, self-esteem, self-regulation, positive behaviour and academic learning. And it significantly reduces depression in adolescents. Reference  

With our current lifestyle creating such busyness and stress it’s becoming vital to our physical and mental health to have effective strategies to relax and manage our emotions. This applies to adults and children alike.

I love the idea of teaching children at a young age how to do this. According to the Dalai Lama, “If every 8 year old in the world is taught meditation, we will eliminate violence from the world within one generation.” What a simple thing to do. Of course meditation and mindfulness aren’t just about emptying your mind of thoughts. They’re about learning to choose your thoughts. Its a way to learn to choose what you focus on and become aware of how it makes you feel.

Learning the art of choosing your thoughts is incredibly empowering not only because it means you can change your emotional state but it also means you can change your perception of the world around you.  I’m sure you know that we all see the world through our own filter and when you can look at it through a positive filter then magically you find (and attract) more good things into your life.

When my children were in Primary School a very enlightened teacher taught them about Edward de Bono’s Six Thinking Hats. Edward de Bono is a Maltese physician, author, inventor and consultant. He originated the term lateral thinking and wrote the book “Six Thinking Hats,” “Teach Your Child How to Think” and several other books. He’s a proponent of the teaching of thinking as a subject in schools.

I teach many clients about the Six Thinking Hats which simply represent six different ways of thinking. Thinking hats are a metaphor that use different colours to indicate the 6 different types of thinking. In a nutshell, when you’re wearing your White Hat you only think about facts and figures, rational and logical thoughts.Your Black Hat is when you’re thinking of problems, difficulties, risks, disadvantages etc.  The Yellow Hat is positive and optimistic and the Green Hat is for creative thinking, brainstorming and lateral thinking. The Red Hat is for intuitive and emotional thinking and the Blue Hat is when you’re thinking and talking about “thinking”. I’m sure you now people who’s Black Hat is permanently stuck to their head!

Learning to recognise and shift from one style of thinking to another can be incredibly beneficial in exploring an issue. Often in a discussion one person will have on their Green Hat and another will immediately respond with their Black Hat on and the new creative idea is squashed. When it’s agreed to spend time thinking of all the positive aspects (Yellow Hat) of an idea before switching to the potential problems, (Black Hat) the issue is explored much more fully. Everyone can then put on their Green Hat to find creative ways to solve the problems and then their White Hat to decide what’s actually feasible.  Just imagine if question time in our Parliament ran that way!!

If you’d like to learn more about the Six Thinking Hats and other powerful ways to choose your thoughts then join me at Kindred Spirits from 10.30am to 12noon on Thursday morning.  You’re welcome to bring your children (over the age of 8) and they can join in. Kindred Spirits is $20 and during the school holidays there’s no charge for children. Next week (10.30am Thursday April 9th) we’ll be creating Mandalas so your children are very welcome to attend that one as well.

“The Truth About Cancer” Documentary Series
One more thing before you go…  I want to let you know about a Documentary Series about Cancer called The Quest for the Cures… continues. I’m very curious to watch this series and thought you might be interested. It’s a free 11 part series that screens online at 12 noon daily starting today Tuesday March 31st in Melbourne (Mon 30th 9pm US Eastern Time)  The recording of each episode is available for 24 hours after the screening. You can watch the trailer and sign up HERE. I would love to know what you think.

Now please take a look at the side column for our upcoming events and specials>>>
And…. We would love to review us on Facebook. See the link is below. You recieve a $20 voucher towards you next session with one of our practitioners.

That’s all for now.  Have a great week and a Happy Easter,
Warm Regards,
Alison Burton
pioneering the future of healthcare

Simply Natural Therapies
41 Tunstall Square
East Doncaster
VIC 3109
03 9842 7033