Thursday, 27 October 2011

Phenomenal Insight into the Mind-Body Connection... from an MD!

Just got back from a whirlwind four days in Toronto at the 13th annual Energy Psychology Conference, an event that brings together some incredibly gifted healers from across North America and around the world.

Aside from putting on a workshop on Advanced Bodywork at the conference, I was also privileged to share the stage as one of the three keynote speakers, along with Dr. Gabor Maté and Lynn McTaggart.  While circumstances prevented me from attending Lynn's talk, I did get to Gabor's and it was SUPER. 

(My own keynote was called Hacking Perfection: 7 Secrets for Making Yourself and Your Clients Healthier, Happier and Hardier Than You Ever Thought Possible.  I'll be sharing its contents with you later.  The good news is that it was a big hit.  Now, though, I'd like to focus on Dr. Maté's keynote...)

If you're unfamiliar with the work of Dr. Gabor Maté, you might want to take a look at it - he has some valuable insights for you in the realm of human resilience...

You can watch an interview with him here:

I read one of his books a few years ago, called When the Body Says No!.  It's a great book demonstrating not simply the undeniable link between mind and body, but specifically how repressed emotion manifests as malignancy.  Not great news for a culture that chronically suppresses emotion ;-)

(Note: this is the cover for the US edition.  The Canadian cover differs.)

Dr. Maté made three main points about contemporary Western medicine:

1. It separates the mind from the body

2. It separates the person from his/her environment, including relationships

3. It doesn't recognize the body's innate healing capacity

He went on to say that because we evaluate people by their behavior, appearance and circumstances, we tend to identify our SELF as the combination of these things or, to put it another way, we tend to identify our SELF with our personality.  However, the personality is an "imposter", in his words, and the real task of any true healer is simply to help people to see themselves clearly and accurately.

With many years of experience in the medical field, Dr. Maté asserts that cancers and many other serious illnesses, as well as addictions, are usually attempts to avoid feeling the uncomfortable.  This existential stance of refusing to face uncomfortable emotional energies puts your whole being in a defensive mode; however, the cells of the body cannot be in growth mode and defensive mode at the same time.  The former promotes life, the latter death.

Since our personality is so busy trying to avoid reality, it ends up refusing to see the truth and plunging the whole organism into dysfunction and illness.  The real task of the healer is to hold a space of compassion that will allow the client to face his/her inner world so as to transform it.  All of this, he said, is not particularly easy in a society that blocks healthy aggression and persistently sends us the message that maintaining our relationships requires us to betray our own authenticity.

The title of his address, The Archeology of Silence, underlines how essential it is for the healer to pay attention to and perceive the client's non-verbal communications because they contain vital clues about what's really going on. 

While I don't claim this summary does justice to his presentation, I do believe that all of us can benefit enormously from Dr. Maté's work.  So put this guy on your reading list ;-)

~ Dr. Symeon Rodger 

Friday, 7 October 2011

Join Me at This Year's Energy Psychology Conference!

Just two short weeks from today the 13th annual Energy Psychology Conference begins in Toronto, Canada!

Along with numerous other top experts I'll be there, presenting a two-hour workshop on Friday October 21 called Advanced Bodywork for Emotional Balance and Mind-Body Reintegration.

This workshop contains lots of material I've never presented before - it's the shape of things to come in mind-body integration, a real "how-to" guide to becoming authentically human, mastering your emotions and improving your health.  You don't have to continue living in the "mind-body divorce" of Western culture that's messing you up on every plane of your existence.  There IS a better way!

You can get all the info on the conference and register here:

Why Come to the Energy Psychology Conference?

First, you get to meet many of the top healers in the world today and learn cutting edge methods you can use in your own life, in the lives of your loved ones and, if you're a practitioner, with your clients.

There are amazing keynote addresses, great workshops, plenty of time to make new friends and a well-stocked bookstore - it's paradise ;-)

Among this year's presenters is Lynn McTaggart, the famous author of the now classic bestseller, The Field: the Quest for the Secret Force of the Universe.  Lynn is one of the world's top authorities on energy healing and cutting edge biology. 

Lynn McTaggart

So have a look at the EPC site using this link.  If you can possibly come to this amazing conference I would encourage you to do so because it's an incomparable learning opportunity!

Hope to see you there!

~ Dr. Symeon Rodger

Tuesday, 4 October 2011

Amazing Demo of Personality Types

Recently I had the privilege of attending a talk by Dr. Robert Rohm, probably the foremost exponent of the DISC personality assessment today.  I wasn't expecting anything special since I was already extensively familiar with DISC, but was I in for a surprise!  This was one of the most dynamic and engaging presentations I've ever seen...

"If you would describe yourself as an outgoing person," said Dr. Rohm, "I'd like you to go and stand at that end of the room.  But if you'd describe yourself as a more reserved person, then please stand at the opposite end.  Just go with whatever your inclination is now - this isn't cast in stone."

So we all headed to our respective ends of the room, as he continued... "Now, within each of your groups, some of you will be more 'task oriented' while others are more naturally 'people oriented'.  If you believe you're more people oriented, please stand on the window side of the room and if you're more task oriented, I'd like you to stand over on the door side of the room.  Do all this while staying at your respective ends of the room."

So there we were, neatly divided into four groups:

  • Outgoing and task oriented
  • Outgoing and people oriented
  • Reserved and people oriented
  • Reserved and task oriented
 Dr. Rohm described each of the above groups in order, explaining, "We call these groups respectively D, I, S and C.  You D types are dominant; you like to be in control and take charge, telling others what to do.  You want to run the show.

"You I types are inspiring, the life of the party.  You want to be in the limelight and you think you ARE the show.

"You S types are supportive and sensitive.  You're always there for others, you're great team players and your only concern is that the show should go well for everyone.

"You C types are cautious and careful.  You do things thoroughly and methodically, always pursuing excellence.  You'll plan the show so nothing goes wrong."

Looking around the room and knowing a lot of the other attendees personally, I could see he had pretty well hit the nail on the head.  The irony was that since the group was composed heavily of entrepreneurs, the D and I types were over-represented in terms of the general population.  

The Punch Line

"You D types," he went on, "...the happiest day of your parents' life was the day you left home and stopped telling them how to raise you.  As for you I- types, the saddest day in your parents' life was the day you left home, because all the fun left with you.  You S types never did leave home because you're so happy where you are.  And you C types have bought your parents' home and are now leasing it back to them!"

"Now understand that these types are complimentary and no one type is 'better' than another.  It's just how you're wired.  But there's more to it: all of us contain all four types within us.  It's just that one or two of the types will dominate while the others have much less influence on your behavior.  So if you couldn't be in the quadrant you're standing in now, point to the one that you feel would describe next best how you're wired."

We all pointed.  I'm a high C / high S blend, so I pointed to the S quadrant folks standing at the back of the room on the window side.  

"Notice that almost all of you pointed to your left or right and that only a couple of you pointed directly across the room.  Typically the quadrant across the room is the lowest one on your chart and the one you understand the least.

"Also, there's normally a third quadrant that you 'live in' some of the time.  It may not describe your deepest wiring but you're capable of stretching yourself to go there when needed.  What is that quadrant for you?"

I pointed to the D quadrant.  I don't usually feel a huge compulsion to be in charge, but if I'm on a team with a common task to accomplish and I see that the leadership is absent or ineffective, I will automatically take over and start directing things.  

In short, we had a blast at Dr. Rohm's presentation.  It was superb.  Here's a short video of him telling a funny story of his encounter with a high-C type...

The DISC system, represented by the graphic up above, is a fantastic resilience tool for understanding yourself and others.   In the business world, it's a very effective tool for building highly productive teams or for diagnosing and eliminating the tensions and conflicts within a team.  

And I'm delighted to announce that from this moment forward, Global Resilience Solutions will be offering DISC training for teams!  Does your team need help?  If so, give us a call at 888-532-9504. 

~ Dr. Symeon Rodger 

*Please note the "quotations" from Dr. Rohm's presentation are simply paraphrased and may not represent his actual wording.