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Archive for November, 2008

Helping People Coping with Illness

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I can tell you that there are people who tell me they’ve noticed a difference in me since my heart attack almost two years ago. I have noticed it myself. Even though there’s nothing structurally wrong with my heart that hasn’t been wrong with it since before I was born (according to two separate stress tests, the heart attack caused zero damage), I’m a different guy for having experienced it. Those changes are coming to a head now, and I am looking for ways to make myself more like what I was before. I’m getting some guidance from people close to me: one is an NLP Practitioner, and the other is a psychologist who specializes in trauma. I need this guidance because it’s so easy for a person to kid themselves.

The economy is stressing lots of people to the point of strain now, and because strain is a leading cause of various illnesses, the opportunity for we people-helpers to help the physically ill with their emotional and mental challenges is likely to present itself more and more often. You never know when you might have a friend, relative, or co-worker who’s suddenly faced with something bigger than they’re equipped to handle alone.

The Psych Central blog has featured several “coping with illness” articles over the past couple of months. I’d like to draw your attention to three of them.

Breast Cancer Coping Styles refers to a Temple University study on responses to a diagnosis of breast cancer.

Ericksen set out to explore how women respond to a diagnosis of breast cancer shortly after receiving her own diagnosis. She discovered there are four types of responders, including the “take charge” type, each valuable for different women.

And, because breasts are one of the most important Western symbols of femininity and breast cancer receives more attention in the media than other forms of cancer, Ericksen also investigated how the cultural messages women receive about breast cancer inform their journeys.

PTSD Among ICU Survivors references an article from HBNS which reports that one in five ICU survivors experiences PTSD Symptoms.

PTSD can occur in people who have experienced or witnessed life-threatening events, such as serious accidents, violent personal assaults or natural disasters. Symptoms — which include nightmares and problems sleeping, flashbacks, irritability, anger and feelings of emotional detachment or numbness — often extend for months or years after the traumatic event, and affect about 6.8 percent of the general U.S. population, according to National Center for PTSD figures.

The trauma of an ICU stay triggers PTSD symptoms in many survivors and negatively can affect a person’s quality of life after leaving the hospital, the authors discovered.

Family Members Experience PTSD highlights a University of Pittsburgh study on how families of ICU survivors also experience PTSD.

Researchers found that symptoms of anxiety and depression in family members of ICU patients diminished over time, but high rates of post-traumatic stress and complicated grief remained.

“Our findings suggest that family members of patients in the intensive care unit are at risk for serious psychological disorders that may require treatment,” said Cindy L. Bryce, Ph.D., associate professor of medicine and health policy and management at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine.

One more thing I want to mention is a book which forever changed the way I think about working with people who are facing life-changing events: When Bad Things Happen to Good People, by Harold S. Kushner. If you haven’t read it yet, believe me, it’s worth the time and effort. I keep having to buy new copies because whenever I loan mine, it doesn’t come back.

So keep your eyes, ears, and heart open to those in pain, and remember those close to them as well.

Written by Michael DeBusk

November 22nd, 2008 at 4:17 pm

Posted in Articles,Neuro,Psych

This is a good day

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Yes, indeed. Well, actually, it was yesterday, but I found out about it today. According to Information Week, Monty Python has freed itself:

“For three years you YouTubers have been ripping us off, taking tens of thousands of our videos and putting them on YouTube,” the group explains on the site. “Now the tables are turned. It’s time for us to take matters into our own hands.”

“We know who you are, we know where you live and we could come after you in ways too horrible to tell,” the group’s note continues. “But being the extraordinarily nice chaps we are, we’ve figured a better way to get our own back: We’ve launched our own Monty Python channel on YouTube.”

My personal favorite:

Go celebrate! And remember to thank them properly by buying The Complete Monty Python’s Flying Circus 16-Ton Megaset like I just did.

Written by Michael DeBusk

November 20th, 2008 at 4:56 pm

Posted in Left Field

Lie to me soon

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This article on Eyes for Lies points to what promises to be a very, very cool new TV series: Lie To Me. Based on the life and work of Dr. Paul Eckman:

DR. CAL LIGHTMAN (Tim Roth, “The Incredible Hulk,” “Reservoir Dogs”) can detect the truth by analyzing a person’s face, body, voice and speech. When someone shrugs one shoulder, rotates their hand or raises their lower lip, Lightman knows they’re lying. By analyzing facial expressions, he can read feelings – from hidden resentment to sexual attraction to jealousy. But as Lightman well knows, his scientific ability is both a blessing and a curse in his personal life, where family and friends deceive each other as readily as criminals and strangers do. Lightman is the world’s leading deception expert, a scientist who studies facial expressions and involuntary body language to discover not only if you are lying but why.

Premiers January 21 on Fox. (Hey, Honey, set the TiVo, please!)

Watch the trailer:

Written by Michael DeBusk

November 20th, 2008 at 4:39 pm

Posted in Calibration,Free

Special Guest at the Rabbit Hole

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If you’ve yet to sign up for Doug O’Brien’s advanced workshop on altered states, “How Deep the Rabbit Hole: Further Adventures in Neo-Ericksonian Hypnosis,” your time is running out! It’s this coming weekend!

Explore the inner/outer reaches of Ericksonian-based Hypnosis and therapeutic interventions. Discover not only what it has to offer your clients, find out what it has to offer you.

Hurry and sign up at How Deep the Rabbit Hole.

PS: Doug tells me he’s arranged for a Shaman, initiated in Brazil, to personally conduct Shamanic Journeys. It’ll be amazing.

Written by Michael DeBusk

November 9th, 2008 at 12:41 am

Posted in Hypnosis,Personal Change

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Jonathan Altfeld’s new trainings

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Jonathan Altfeld has two new courses — one for Practitioners, one for Master Practitioners — coming up soon. He calls them “Mental Renovation”:

To get NLP to help you achieve the changes you desire, you have to make a choice. There’s no avoiding it. You have a choice of 3 optimal or primary options:

  1. Take a lot of expensive training over time, and get extraordinarily good at knowing & using NLP, which might help you to become good enough at it, that you can create the changes you want in your life. The benefit of this route is, you might also get good enough to help others. That may be a career choice that would excite you.
  2. Hire an NLP-trained coach or Practitioner to do their magic on/with you, which may vaguely resemble therapy depending on how badly trained the NLP practitioner or coach is. Done right, you should get some of the changes you want, but you’ll be paying premium rates by the hour for such 1-on-1 work.
  3. Attend one or several short, applied courses or seminars like this one, which instead of training you in NLP, the seminar leaders use NLP while they lead you through exercises or experiences that get you to think differently about your situation. Then you sometimes get the change you want, but you won’t have actually learned a lot of NLP consciously. If you want the results without a new career in NLP, this is the way to go.

Go learn more about the Mental Renovation Workshops in Chambersburg, PA and sign up!

Written by Michael DeBusk

November 9th, 2008 at 12:21 am

Ouch… Wait… What?

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Read this headline from the Fox News Web site:

Skydiver Dies in Second Fatal Jump at Virginia Airport in 2 Months

Are you, like I was, wondering what happened to him in his first fatal jump? Or how he managed to make a second fatal jump?

I had to read the article to make sense of it.

I think they do that on purpose.

Written by Michael DeBusk

November 5th, 2008 at 1:51 pm

Posted in Linguistic