The show is hosted by Colleen Dwyer, a senior Allen Carr’s Easyway therapist who is joined by Emma Hudson – Allen Carr’s Easyway Mindfulness Practitioner
Featuring Emma Hudson – Allen Carr’s Easyway Mindfulness Practitioner
Please click the video below to watch the podcast
In Episode 5 we we cover topics ranging from quitting addictions to finding inner peace. Our guests John C. Dicey and Emma Hudson are experts in their fields, and they share a wealth of knowledge and insight that will help you on your journey towards a healthier, more fulfilling life.
John answers questions from listeners including –
- Is it really possible to completely cure cocaine addiction with just one 6 hour seminar?
- What should I do if the alcohol book hasn’t stopped me from drinking?
- Can Allen Carr’s method help with procrastination?
Emma Hudson is the mindfulness practitioner at Allen Carr’s Easyway. Emma talks about how the Allen Carr method fits perfectly with the practice of mindfulness.
If you’d like your questions answered drop us a line on firstname.lastname@example.org with whatever you’d like to say or any questions that you have.
Welcome and thanks for joining us today. I’m Colleen Dwyer. I’m a senior Allen Carr’s Easyway therapist. I’m the presenter of our series of online video programs and your podcast host. I’m sure you’re going to love today’s episode.
Our guests are.
Experts in their fields and they share a wealth of knowledge and insight that will help you on your journey towards a healthier, more fulfilling life. Firstly, I’m speaking with John Dicey for our Addiction Central segment. John Dicey is the global CEO of Allen Carr’s Easy Way, and he’s also co-author of Allen Carr Books and a senior Allen Carr’s Easy Way therapist who has helped millions of addicts to freedom over the last 25 years.
John and I will be hearing from listeners who have contacted us with questions, including Is it really possible to completely cure cocaine addiction with just one six hour seminar? What should I do? AC Alcohol hasn’t stopped me from drinking. And we also have a question regarding the application of Allen Call’s method to procrastination. If you’d like your questions answered, drop us a line on the pod at Allen Carr dot com with whatever you’d like to say or any questions that you have.
We are also joined today by Emma Hudson, who is the Mindfulness practitioner, Allen Carr’s Easyway. Emma talks about how the Allen Carr method fits perfectly with the practice of mindfulness. Emma also talks about how our mindfulness program came to be. We’ll be happy to hear from you if you have any questions about any addiction. And even if we don’t actually feature your question and a future episode of the podcast, we will pass in reply to every question we receive, providing you with details, advice and guidance.
So don’t forget, get in touch on email@example.com and do also check out Allencarr.com and see the range of addictions and issues that Allen Carr’s easy way has now been applied to. So let’s get started. Here I am talking with John Dicey for our segment, addiction central.
So, John, welcome back to Addiction Central. And we’ve had quite a lot of emails through. And the first one is from Martin, who’s in the Caribbean. And Martin Martin said that he’s read the online call, but before he did it in 2009 for smoking and it was like a miracle he quit. He went from it doesn’t say how many, but he quit and he’s never had a problem with it.
He couldn’t believe that it was so effective. But he’s saying the same techniques and principles really also works cocaine addiction. And he’s saying is all addicts are. I’m really sceptical about believing that anything can really help me with this soul destroying habit. But then I also thought that about smoking. So I’m really keen to know whether what you do is tailored for other drugs.
That’s a great question. Was met. Where was Martin from? The Caribbean. That’s it? Yeah. Yes, it’s a good question. We covered some of this, I think, in a previous episode in terms of how how each addiction is handled. So very different. There are some key principles to having cause easy life, but this is a good opportunity to to look at those.
Those are aspects. So where there’s cocaine or cannabis or prescription drugs or ketamine and any drug really anyone can mention we’ve helped people with really incredible, really. But it’s in my reply to to Martin, I said, if only it was so easy just to replace the word smoking with the word, you know, snorting or whatever it might be.
Even cocaine or or whatever drugs involved that would make life really easy. But it’s not like that at all. So we’ve got the key foundations of the easy way around that We have to having, you know, the specific tailor tailored examples, explanations, understanding of how each particular addiction works. So no, I think some people are worried about that.
You know, I think they do think, oh, it’s going to be exactly the same as the smoking seminar, for example, you know, except with a word used. Definitely isn’t as say, if it was, it would have would have been able to come up with the new the new elements of the method a lot quicker. But certainly within if we could use the term sort of other drugs, if it makes sense, whether the illicit or prescription drugs or whatever other drugs that don’t include some of our main ones smoking alcohol, sugar or whatever other drugs, the similarity in in the seminal for those drugs.
So the one to ones, that’s the main difference because what we found was I would call for people don’t want to necessarily share within a group like that. They don’t feel comfortable doing that. But also the quite the quite in-depth. So the therapist team sort of who work on those has to be quite flexible. So someone will come in and say out, you know, so which drugs that you like help with?
And they say, well, this for what I’m doing, which which drug I’m taking. So that imagine the sort of a one size fits all seminar doesn’t really work in that kind of environment. So yeah, huge similarities in those 1 to 1 seminar. So there’s that kind of more than the skeleton of the seminar. There’s kind of a really good structure on it on which we have the conversation between the therapist and the client and actually get to the bottom of exactly what it is that they need help with and what have you.
So yeah, so we can rest, put Martin’s mind at rest. You know, it couldn’t be more tailor made for the, the other drugs seminar should we say. Do you think other drugs is a good expression. I always struggle with it because it’s sort of. Well, you say other drugs. What does it mean that nicotine is a drug or alcohol isn’t a drug or whatever.
But I think that’s the best way for us. Describe it.
I know what you mean. But. So no other drugs? I think his is understood. And Martin was saying about being, you know, really sceptical because it does it does sound like quite incredible. The one seminar, one book or one video program can help you get rid of an addiction to cocaine because cocaine is traditionally seen as this, you know, hard hitting class a drug.
But as Martin said, he had the same kind of scepticism when he came along to his seminar for smoking is thinking, well, okay, can do for nicotine, but can it really do it for cocaine? But of course it can. I was doing him a call just last week with the company talking about our wellbeing at work offering and talking about how we address issues like cocaine or nicotine or alcohol or gambling and debt or all the 14 different titles that we’ve got at the moment.
One of the questions the lady a lady had on the call was, what if someone seeks your help for cocaine? So they watched the online video programme, so cocaine. And she said, but they they have, you know, their problem is too big for your program to help because everyone sort of expects there to be, you know, a rehab clinic.
You know, you have to go somewhere for six weeks. You you you know, this is how big the problem is. You need to throw a lot of money at it, a lot of time, you know, a lot of willpower. And and I explained the was what counts is not the length of time that you spend, you know, studying the issue.
It’s the content of the of the programme that you’re using to get the person off. So, you know, but she was incredulous that, you know, a six hour program could help you to quit cocaine addiction initially. So, you know, what I’m saying is Martin saying like all addicts, he’s sceptical, but really everyone’s sceptical. An addict or non addict would be sceptical that one day program could help you to quit.
But it does, you know, it’s we’re very proud and happy to say that it works.
Actually, and speaks to the brainwashing factor, doesn’t it, Whether it’s to do with smoking or alcohol or other drugs that, that even people in Ireland used to make this point himself frequently, even people who don’t take the drug you’re making as well, even people don’t take the drug believe the brainwashing that I am. Part of that brainwashing is that it’s hard to stop, that you can’t you can’t just quit and get free brandy or spend the rest of your life miserable or moping after the drug.
So that is it’s a great indication of the scale of the brain brainwashing that so many people who’ve never taken the drugs also also believe it to be impossible.
Yeah, Yeah, exactly. So the other thing that Martin was was saying, he said he did his smoking seminar in person. He doesn’t live in England like he lives in the Caribbean. So he’s worried that a Zoom session won’t be as effective as being there in person. So do you have any numbers as to the success rate for online versus in-person?
I love the way you say Caribbean. I can’t say about those people in America.
At first I said it’s Martin from the Caribbean, but then you question me. You said, Where is he from? So maybe I have pronounced it wrong. So I switched it.
How do you say aluminium? Aluminium alone or aluminium?
Oh, yeah. Like I don’t get.
Why do I digress. No, it’s another great question really, isn’t it. And this comes up quite frequently, post-COVID and during COVID, lots of lots of companies, lots of service providers, you know, worked really hard switching their operations sort of online. And we were very fortunate in that we’d already done that. So come back along while we were presenting seminars online life all about when we started five years ago, something like that, maybe six years ago.
So it really we’ve got lots of data on it with lots of experience on it. And, and it was very, very simple for us to introduce it into territories where we didn’t yet do it. So we started off in the USA, so we had two main seminars in the main centres in New York and Los Angeles, really Toronto, North America and Canada, and we got stuck on that for quite a long time and overnight by putting them, putting them live and online, you know, I think, you know, every city, every state, coast to coast, which was just extraordinary really.
And we were so careful doing that. I think some providers doing it sort of in the heat of the COVID crisis, we made lots of mistakes. But because we you know, we had off six years ago, what I wanted to do desperately was to reproduce exactly the vibe of being in the room as long as we always had to.
So it was important. And it is easy now with with platforms like this. But going back six or seven years, it wasn’t much the tech was it wasn’t really anywhere near like it was today. We use some different, mostly different platforms over a period of time. So it doesn’t seem that sort of revolution right now. But but to say, well, I want the therapies facilitated to be able to see all the clients or all the clients to be able to see the therapist facilitator, and it’s a two way, you know, conversation between clients and the therapist facilitator.
It was quite a tool, quite a challenge back then, but we succeeded with it and we worked really hard. It really is no different. We offer the same. It’s exactly the same content, exactly the same therapies, exactly the same money back guarantee. There’s no that is no difference with it. So we can reassure everybody of that. Over many, many years.
The the effectiveness, the success rate is equal. There’s no difference, which is brilliant. You know, it’s reassuring for people. Means that Martin doesn’t have to fly from the Caribbean to London or or or New York or somewhere to to to to get his session. That also the question of what I don’t know.
Absolutely. That’s both the points that Martin had. And, you know, I hope he finds that reassuring. So let’s call the next email that we received in is from Carlos in Atlanta, USA, if I pronounce that right. And he says, Can. I just say, you said Caribbean perfectly well, I was just joking, really, because, you know, there’s two accepted pronunciations in there and I can’t do the flashy one that you do – Caribbean.
So yeah. Carlos from Atlanta says, I desperately need to stop drinking. But what do you do when you’ve listened to the book three times and the urge to drink still exists? He says, I feel an immense grief when I think about not drinking, and I’m really scared. And now it’s starting to hurt my marriage. Yeah, it’s tough because you can really sense Catholicism angst and, you know, panic.
I feel I really feel for Carlos, and I think it’s a such a well-trodden path. People I think most people have heard of the book, less people have heard of the seminars and very few people realise that the seminars or the original version of the method, it wasn’t the book that was turned into a seminar. The original version that it was was the seminar the most effective version of the method.
It has always been and will always be seminal just because of its nature is is interactive. It takes into account everybody’s understanding, everybody’s ability to think. You’re able to sort of ask questions and seek clarification. There is there really is no sort of comparison. So people who who fail to quit with a book, whether it’s alcohol or sugar or smoking or vaping or whatever it might be a book for each programme, for each of those course, they beat themselves up, they feel really bad about themselves and, you know, my heart goes out to them because, well, the method didn’t click for you and it’s not your fault.
It’s just one of those things. I’m very lucky in a way that I can completely empathise because the book didn’t click for me when I stopped smoking. I was 88, a smoker, and like our guest, Carlos, everything in the book resonated with me. It all kind of made sense to me and I thought I understood it, but as I just carried on smoking, I don’t you know, didn’t even nearly quit.
And I was a terrible, terrible, terribly bad at quitting anything, just sort of lost a few hours, really. And it wasn’t until I heard about the the Seminoles, I thought, okay, give them a go. And that’s when I found out what I Oh, this is. This is it. This is not the book is the kind of if you can’t get to a seminar, go for it.
If this this brings the method to you. So I’m not science college so you’ve got to come to a seminar that the book has work for you three times. You haven’t, you know, now you need to go to a seminar or sign up for the online video program. I’ve never said that to anybody is one of those things.
You know, you’ve got to take it. Bear in mind about can people afford it? I mean, even with the the stop smoking seminars, I think within three or four weeks of stopping smoking, you’ve saved you saved the sea anyway, that you pay for it. And with a money back guarantee you can’t lose. But I think I always have to assume the person I’m giving advice to doesn’t have any money they have got.
They’ve got no this is their this is their shop. I’ve reached out to us for help. So what always do we get? I don’t know how many we get every week. That is hundreds of requests for help via social media and what have you. I assume in our replies they haven’t got any money to spend on anything else and therefore sort of giving them the best possible advice you can in the event that they want to reread the book again, this time with success.
Now I can not say if you can afford it. This is this is the way you should go. This is the most natural, an obvious thing for you to do. And ultimately it does get to that point eventually. Sometimes if we keep reading book again and again and again and again, you know, something’s got to change for them to have success.
And there are people who who’ve read the book ten times and then succeeded and they cited a post they say it’s called I’ll read It Again, read it again, really concentrate on it. Don’t stop reading until you stop. But it will, you know, even you have to read it 20 times. Carry on. And that would have broke my heart if I’d been given that advice when I sell the book because I think, well, how many more times I will go to read it and keep keep going.
So I think the people offered advice, really. They’re very well intentioned, offering that advice, but it’s the wrong advice. You know, the number one advice for anybody is read the book without success, whether it’s once, twice, three times, ten times, get in touch with us. We give some free of charge advice based on what you tell us. We got a questionnaire about, you know, your experiences, what I call the method, and and take it, take it from there.
Whether you want to read the book again, using that advice or whether you’re able to, then, you know, think about it as I would I want to I want to maximise my chances of success. I use the online video programme or sign up for Life seminar and take it from there. So Carlos, I think afforded to our reply was I think about three pages was how long my reply was to Carlos.
But it take it takes into account everything that the person tells us and has them kind of okay this guy about this same objective in a different way, whether that’s for the book or the online video programme or the life seminar, they’re all so the question, the perfect thing.
I think that was great. I mean, listening to you, it’s, you know, like it’s reassuring when you say that you’ve because you get so many of these kind of communications and to the to the head office, people seeking, you know, support in some form or other to hear you say that, you know, you have to assume that someone doesn’t have any money so that you because really your your well, my instant reaction would be you’ve got to do the seminar.
What are you messing about for? This stuff is critical to your, you know, enjoyment of life and your quality of life and your length of life. You know, this is this is not about buying a new pair of trainers. This is, you know, real big stuff. So I’d have to keep a lid on that, you know, to keep in mind that not it’s not an option for some people at that moment in time.
And then you’ve got the the additional support or guidance, you know, by filling in the forms online. So says good. Thank you. Hopefully that helps you call us back from Connecticut in the USA. Oh Beth said she used the anecdote easy way to lose weight book and she said she listened to the podcast. She enjoyed it, but she had a sound issue and said the intern, The outro music was really like big thumping bass and it startled her.
So she had the volume at the right level for us to hear our voices. But then the music just like came in quite unexpectedly. So yeah, apologies for that. Beth That’s terrible. So we’ll we’ll make adjustments on that level so that everything’s a bit more normalised because that must have been a bit annoying. We have Henry, who is from California in the United States, and Henry is saying, I’ve quit digital addiction.
My thanks to the easy way method and I am very grateful for the improvements in my life that that has brought. One of the other things I’ve always struggled with is laziness. There are so many things I know I should do, and in fact I want to do them either out of like personal interest or sense responsibility that somehow feels impossible to start doing them.
It’s hard to put my finger on exactly what the feeling is, but there is this intense mental resistance whenever I even think about those things. And I was wondering if the easy method has a solution for overcoming that issue, I’d appreciate any help you can provide.
Yeah, what we did, we did We did ask people to. It doesn’t they could ask for help with the stuff we done that offer help with, if that makes sense. Because we’ve always got something to say about any real any behaviour issue really, or addiction and heavy sort of. It sounds like you either read the smartphone thumb phone book or use the online video program for it to what we’ve particularly with this issue was just technology.
The digital addiction. As we said, we didn’t specify which which whether it was a book or the video.
We had a book. The book no, nobody got a book sort of cover the same the same issues mainly started only fine social media, social networking, you know, message messenger groups, that kind of thing. Gaming we touched on in there as well. It’s great that it worked for you, Harry. It’s great to hear the the issue you were talking about there.
It is really interesting. And I did Again, you pretty got my reply there to Henry I think was a page and a half, two pages long or something with we’re thinking about doing a program on this where people just don’t get around to doing stuff. I put stuff off.
Exactly. And that seems to be a 21st century thing that’s getting worse and worse. So I think we will do something on that at some point in the future. And even when we do, it will include stuff like that, which I’ll mention to Harry, which is, okay, well you’re aware you’ve got a problem. You’ve obviously tried to, to, to come up with a solution to not be so lazy or whatever else and and failed.
So maybe start looking at looking at it from a different point of view. Maybe look at your diet, what you’re eating. We know for a fact that when people start, it’s made up of lots of starchy carbs, processed carbs, refined sugar. It has the image of giving you energy, but it does the complete opposite. It, you know, actually become quite sluggish, unmotivated, less mobile, less active generally.
That’s the way it goes. So have a look at that. Henry Even if you resistant to that, I mean, I think it has nothing to do with what I am you know, applied to, which is look at that. If your diet is made up mainly of of stuff like bread, pasta, pizza, lots of rice, sugar, that kind of pastry kind of stuff, flour, it might be worth just looking into that.
It’s a good sugar, bad sugar book and online video program and life seminar are actually rocking in the mind, but they’re really just helping so many people and it’s not just people who are suffering with type two diabetes and actually their blood sugars go back to normal within a few days of just changing what they’re eating. People find it absolutely extraordinary.
When we created the program, this was this you know, we were criticised for it because it just seemed sort of completely radical to go against the grain of anybody, anything anybody else was saying. But I was genuinely accepted that if you cut refined sugar, starchy carbs, processed carbs, etc., out of your diet, then you get rid of type two.
So you, you know, almost overnight stays away as long as you stay off those foods and lose your sense of the term. And with that, it’s not just the change in body shape, the weight loss. The excuse is the mental acuity. It’s the motivation, the energy just is incomparable. So I have to think about that. Henry, If it’s not that, you know, if you have great eat a great healthy diet low in those ingredients.
Think about are you heavily into caffeine. He used a lot of stimulants because, again, the image is not this keeps you as if he gives you wings, shall we say. According to a Red Bull, it does the opposite. Of course. It gradually drags you lower and lower, saps your energy and your motivation and how quickly you are heavily involved in the program, The program for caffeine addiction.
And it was one of those old ones. You know, it’s sort of we wanted to do it because lots of people expressed concern with that caffeine consumption. It’s helped a lot of a lot of people. This is a really great thing to do. Of course, heavy fuel not only add up, you know, refined, processed carbs, refined sugar, heavy diet and we caffeine consumer, then we have both solutions there.
But that you know that these are the the traits most common with people who have an issue with that wish and we talked about procrastination or apparent laziness or lack of motivation lack of sort of energy. And if you have a few other things beside it could be alcohol. You know, you got to stop drinking, stop smoking, stop everything.
But if there is an issue in your life that’s that’s causing you concern, it does sound like Henry is concerned about it. They look at these various aspects and just check check those out. I don’t know anything else to add to that. Clean are probably a lot more than that and the replies and or even.
Did you call. Yeah so you talking a lot about maybe sleep you know it’s just I suppose looking at all the different aspects of your life. It could in a little way, you know, each of them have a detrimental effect on your energy and it’s, it’s quite understandable to not immediately recognise that these things can have such a bearing on our motivation and laziness and, you know, energy levels that you just accept where you’re at as being normal and you start to kind of take on board these traits as being inherent in you, you know, why am I so lazy or why have I got this intense mental resistance to doing things I know I
need to do and I want to do? There’s something wrong with me. But actually the first point of call is to look at those other aspects smoking, sleeping, drinking, food intake, you know, and it might be, might not, you know, in your case might not be, but it might be that if you just clear up these these concerns for actually you got way more energy, you’re much more engaged in life.
You lose this kind of idleness that you, you think is part of your character. And it’s actually the full of these these other behaviours or, you know, addictions. So that that was really interesting to me to read that response because I thought it’s so true and I’m guilty of it, you know, myself that sometimes I’m feeling a bit, you know, down or a bit low.
I start looking for an obvious single explanation for why when actually it might be a combination of a whole load of different things. You know, maybe I haven’t been as careful as I should have been about my my sleep. Maybe, you know, I didn’t handle that bit of stress in the most efficient or the best way. Or maybe, you know, obviously smoking and drinking are no longer a part of that equation.
Thankfully. But yeah, if you look at the maybe less obvious causes that you might be surprised that actually everything’s all right with you. It was just those other those other behaviours that were a problem.
Absolutely. I think it’s really important for Henry and people like Henry and Henry’s position to take on board what you’re saying. So important that you think it’s a shortcoming in yourself when it’s nothing of the sort. You know, this just whatever life is, Chuck, to you, whatever, you know, you the lifestyle you seem to have taken on. But I’ve pretty much always been lured into one way or the other.
I just am fine, fine tuning on. That can make a huge difference.
Absolutely perfect. Thank you so much, John.
Is that right?
That is a wrap. We have done it. So that’s for another episode. And so, you know, thanks to everyone who’s sent their questions in and if anyone wants to have their questions answered, it’s pod Allen Carr dot com P.O.D. at Allen Carr dot com And yeah, thanks very much John for your time and we’ll see you next time.
Hi, I’m Anna Hudson. I’m a Sydney therapist. An easy way to stop smoking and I also am a meditation, my teacher. So I teach and I have taught meditation widely to adults and children for about 11 years, but I helped bring it into an easy way by her. I help with the book and cause he’s writing mindfulness the book, so I help set that to write some of the meditations in that and guide the editors.
And then I go to online courses where eight week courses to mindfulness around about lockdown about 2020.
So how did you come to be working on causes you I anyway, what was your introduction to the Daily?
Okay, so I stopped smoking in October 99. So I, I read the book and, and continue to smoke. Listen to the audiotapes. You know, watch the video still smoked, but then decide to come on to a session. And so came on to a session and just got it you know very happy non smoker and it was.
The I just was so blown away by this that I just saw, why don’t I become a therapist? And I can actually remember the time I was sitting in a pub with my husband and I remember the time I said to him, what I want to do, I want to I want to work, and how’s he doing? And he said, Go for it is what I did.
What kind of a smoker were you and what was it that you think just clicked?
So I was a quite heavy smoker, so I was about 40 or 50 a day smoker. So what was it in the in the seminar? I think it was just a realisation that it does absolutely nothing. And I just suddenly thought, you know, I’m just fed up of doing something that does absolutely nothing and I’m just not going to do that anymore.
And it was it was that the kind of penny dropped then that was it.
So that would have been covered in the book and the video that you watched. So why did you think what you was different when you came to a seminar? What made you have that penny dropping moment?
I think there was a point where I just wasn’t willing to let go of the belief that there that there was absolutely no point to it because I started saying, Well, hang on, if I actually accept that there’s no point to it, then I’ve been a bit of an idiot. I’ve been a bit of an idiot for the past 23 or 25 years, you know, and I just wasn’t willing to let that go.
So I was always trying to find a way. Yeah, but, but you know, but there’s got to be something in it or else I wouldn’t have done it, you know? And on the seminar, it became apparent that there is absolutely no benefit to it whatsoever. No point to it. And when I was at certainly willing to accept that, that’s when that’s when it just became clear that I would never smoke again.
Yeah. Yeah. It was. That was a letting go, letting go of the belief that there was ever a benefit to it. I also remember picking up the Allen Carr was quite clear that we were never to kind of look back on our past and think that we were stupid as smokers. It was always and, maybe this was it, maybe it was a be clever enough to know you will never smoke again.
I felt like, Oh yeah, I can do that. Yeah, I’ve been clever enough to never smoke again. I like that that. That fitted with me nicely. Yeah.
Yeah. It’s interesting you talking about letting go, because that leads us into the myth on this program that you run. Can you tell us about how that all came about?
I know as I started to kind of teach yoga and I started to teach mindfulness and and really got a good understanding of mindfulness, you know, and I realised actually mindfulness is just paying attention, is paying attention generally to habitual destructive behaviour. And so, you know, I wasn’t learning all about mindfulness, but still, you know, working through the easy way and delivering the seminars.
And it just became apparent as I was doing seminars and actually Allen Carr, he was just being mindful and he was just bringing our attention to what we are doing and then just breaking it down and breaking down the myths and the illusions, you know? And I said, Well, maybe we could bring it into Allen Carr. And then it was when it was suggested that the book was going to be written.
Allen called His Way to Mindfulness. John Dicey approached me and said, Would I would I help with the with the writing of it? Because I was actually, you know, a teacher and had the experience of a meditation practice. And I was absolutely delighted. Then it was interesting because I went to uni, I went to Bangor Uni and I studied for three years the science behind mindfulness.
So I did a masters of science in mindfulness and spent some glorious time up in Bangor Uni in Wales with researchers, you know, and really looking at how the brain changes, you know, when you are, when you are putting my first practice in place. And so the first part of lockdown, I had done my thesis. I’ve been writing a thesis about self-compassion and emotions practice and that kind of that got submitted.
I thought, well, why don’t we write an eight week course? And like all these, I’ve done the book and that seems to be doing well. So I have shown and said, You know what you think? And he said, Yeah, can you write a manual? So I write the manual, kind of the second part of lockdown, so that the manual eight week manual is it’s, it’s, it’s quite a bit Zen because I’m trained by Zen master and continue that training.
There’s a big dollop of neuroscience. That’s the stuff that I studied at uni but a massive, big dollop of Allen Carr. So I’ve married two things I am massively passionate about. One is Allen Carr and the other is mindfulness. And to bring them together is an absolute joy. It’s an absolute joy to be able to bring that together.
Yeah, I’m so happy to see when we launched the Mindfulness eight week course to the corporate market how well it was utilised and how how many employees took it up.
I think in the corporate world, yeah, there’s such a big need for it, there’s such a big need for it that your employees will just communicate better. If, if they’ve got a michael of practice in place, they will just know when to just step back, when to pause, when to take a breath, to not just to sort of be able to regulate their emotions.
I mean, it’s a big thing in a boardroom, you know, and I’ve heard it in some boardrooms now, if that when they’re about to make a decision that some companies that were sick and it’s just let’s just have two minute breathing space, a three minute breathing space before we vote on this. And it’s just giving up everybody the opportunity, just let everything settle and just to see things clearly that are now making the right decision.
And I think it’s so valuable to say that, you know, you.
Eat you quit smoking, didn’t you, with Allen Carr’s easy way, did you. Quite anything else.
Yes. So I stopped drinking. That was amazing. 2007 I went into that session. Absolutely. Just I was so open to it. And by lunchtime I phoned up my husband and said, I will never drink again. And he said, He’s really shy. I said, Yeah, absolutely, yeah, I’ll never drink again. And I remember it was around about my birthday and we went out that evening and I remember the first time just around the family table and not drinking and I just loved it.
It was referred to as No more diet. I don’t know what it would be. Would you refer to now that I went on that session and I stopped eating meat, then that’s when I stopped eating meat. And then they good sugar, bad sugar. I read that and that completely changed my relationship to sugar. I’m not saying I’m sugar free, but it’s changed my relationship to it.
This kind of thing. Yeah.
That’s a lot of change. And course, easy was brought into your life, isn’t it?
Yeah. Oh, he has been. He is my. Yeah. My life changed when, when I stopped smoking massively and I went I only take two classes for the mindfulness course. I do three takes the classes a couple of hours and I give a good introduction of my background. How have I got to be seated here? You know, and I make a big point.
It was, you know, when I when I stopped smoking using Allen Carr, that was when my life changed my hope. My life just went in a completely different direction and fabulous. I mean, it was he gave me so much as well.
Okay, well, hold on a second if I had to. But heard you talking when I was still smoking and drinking because, you know, back then I treated the lead. The those are the things that were essential to a happy existence. If I’d have had you talking back then, I’d have thought, Well, what would you do then? What do you do for fun?
You don’t smoke, you don’t drink, you don’t eat meat or sugar. What do you do?
I know it’s on paper. It just looks so boring, doesn’t it? We just look so boring. So, yeah, I mean, I just do things that just genuinely give me a natural high, you know? You just don’t, you know, go to dance classes. I like to read. And, you know, I’ve just got passion for poetry. I’ve just got a passion for drawing.
But it’s it’s a poem. My passions and the stuff that I get, it’s a genuine pleasure from which we actually look at that in the eight week course. It’s actually classic tonight. And we look at this tonight because sometimes can lose our way just generally, just as we mature, we just lose our way a little bit with what does give us a genuine pleasure.
We look at things that nourish us, the things that depletes. You know, we actually get lucky and the person is only plaster to you. Write it down. What nourishes you, you know, even stuff that you don’t do what you know nourishes you. And we get them to look at the stuff that nourishes them and say, okay, put that up on your fridge and do more of that and actually work it into your diary that you know, Wednesday evenings I’m going to go dancing.
You know, on Monday night I’m going to pick up netball, tennis or running or, you know, I’m just going to do something for me, some me that is mine, that gives me pleasure just thinking about it, you know, And it’s it’s a lovely thing. And then the things that depletes us, we can approach those with a mindfulness kind of licence, practise them, you know, just be present as they’ve got to be done, they’ve got to be done, you know, as a rather than resist them, get it done, get it done.
So like you said, it becomes just a little bit happier. We spend a lot of time looking at acceptance and kind of letting go and we do a whole class on fear. You know, it’s become debilitating, you know? Have you a fear of going outside or you’ve got social anxiety or, you know, is it just a genuinely, you know, fear of, you know, maybe you’re in the wrong job and you’re frightened of living or in a relationship that you’re frightened of, you know, walking away from.
We get you know, in my practice, we get to really look at that and maybe give ourselves the option that, you know, maybe I could face that fear. And it’s it can be life changing if we just give ourselves the possibility that that is an option rather than just dismissing it.
So do you feel that Western society is more aware of the positives of mindfulness practice now? I think.
So. I absolutely think so. It’s is it’s massively talked about. And I also looked at it looked at as an option, you know, to help, you know, prevent depressive episodes and help relieve anxiety and stress. It’s looked upon as, you know, it’s going to work. If it can work, there’s a possibility that this can work and I work for a charity on it on a monday, I work for a charity and they have a social prescriber there.
And the social prescriber is somebody that say, for example, somebody was experiencing depression. They would be signposted to their GP, get medication. Then they would come to us as a charity and we would say, okay, so you’ve got your you know, you’re being medicated, you know, by your GP, which is great, which is great because you know, often that’s a starting point.
But then social prescriber actually prescribe something sensible for them to be doing and mindfulness is one of them. So it’s, you know, will do what you love doing, you know, due to you enjoy singing. Well we can, you know, get you to do singing or you could do maybe dancing or but it’s, it’s essential things, the social thing.
And we have yoga and mindfulness and meditation. And so I spend time doing that. So it’s definitely recognised now as something that would be prescribed, right? Something that it will help you if you’re experiencing anxiety and depression without doubt. Yeah.
What kind of people come in your course then.
You get a whole range, a whole range, a whole range of age groups, a whole range of people. Some people have come through because they stopped smoking and stopped drinking and they just full of alcohol. They just absolutely love it, you know, And it’s it’s really lovely, you know, to get them on the coattails of just stopping smoking or drinking or people have just stumbled across it.
They’ve just been looking on the website and they haven’t stopped smoking, haven’t stopped drinking, but think actually they’d quite like to just do that. So in so a bit of mindfulness then and see what happens from there. So you know, and you get all walks of life, only ages, you know, it’s lovely. It’s lovely. I wouldn’t say there’s a particular type or age or gender.
I’m from all over the world I.
Guess as well. Lovely. Yeah, that’s, that’s, that’s and I have to remember that the time zones are different.
And how many people are on each course. How many people would you have on each course.
I would say we average, I would say average about.
Seven and it’s proved to be very popular.
And the feedback is phenomenal. The feedback blows me away. You know, when I get emails and messages from the clients, you know, and just how my life has changed.
So do you meditate then, as part of the mindfulness classes?
Yeah. Yeah. So the eight week course, so the first half hour of the eight week course, you know, they will all appear on Zoom. I will just have a quick cut catch up how we’re getting on with the practice and any questions they may have. And then we go into at least a very at least a ten minute meditation practice.
But we do that before we leave. We tackle the topic of the of the class. So the meditation practice has been done and that my experience is just help me do it at the beginning of the class or else, you know, we, we can get a bit bogged down with questions and stuff at the end and we just run out a time.
So the meditation practice is it’s always the first one of the first things we do together.
And do you have any do you do any breathing techniques?
Yeah, yeah, yeah. It’s a good question. Yeah. So from the very first couple of classes, we look at the breathing technique and I’ll say, if you a smoker, you’ve got this breathing technique already, you just make the breath longer than your own breath. We do that as a smoker. I wait, you know, breathing disease out, it’s like, you know, so it’s like you’re doing it.
Just get rid of the cigarette acts. It’s counterproductive with the cigarette. But yes, the breathing techniques. Yeah. And then and then teaching them, you know, really how to just allow those thoughts and feelings and emotions to arise. So not suppressing anything but pulse arising and passing, rising, passing and just reassuring them that, you know, a busy mind isn’t a bad mind.
Just observing or just observing. It’s all our job is to observe just slowly light and pass out.
So that’s interesting. So you’re not trying to get rid of or you’re not trying to have a quiet mind.
That’s right. That’s right. It’s an absolute I think one of the biggest myths and I talk about this right, right in the beginning and that’s the class is one of the biggest misses is people believe that meditation is is clearing your mind. It’s just not we don’t want to clear our minds. We don’t want to stop our thoughts because otherwise we won’t be able to function, you know, So what we what we intend to do is change our relationship to our thoughts so reliable and source to come up, but we’re just not there on is a consideration.
You know, Doctor, just for consideration. You don’t trust them to allow them to come off and I hope you’ll get a good one. Go with that one. You know, I’ve got mostly, mostly 90% of your thoughts, so negative.
Why is that you think?
We think we think it’s part of the kind of reptilian brain. And, you know, when we were all kind of living in caves and, you know, and foraging conclusions that we were out, you get your suits in the morning and maybe there was a sabertooth tiger suddenly appeared. We’d run to safety and and but our mind would have to keep going over that.
We’d have to ruminate over that to remind us, one, perhaps not to go back to that area again, but to the proper danger out there. And we have got to be aware of it. It’s a hangover from that. Now, the danger that we are experiencing is not life threatening, but we don’t know the difference our bodies don’t know the difference.
So mindfulness allows us to see the difference that, you know, that feeling that we’re having kind of a reaction to something is our body reacting so so we can learn to respond to that. We’re not experiencing the danger that we were. We just know it’s just not life threatening. We’re just getting stressed. Because I know we see somebody that we find challenging, okay.
That that could create it, that could create that that kind of negative thinking, which ruminate over it.
And what would someone need to do if they were interested in the mindfulness side of things and calls easy way.
Oh yeah. So just go onto the the website and follow the link to the Allen cause he’s right to mindfulness and I think it’s a little head with a little red cog in it. I think. So you just click on that and then just there’s a blurb I think, about what the courses involve and the Taser class, what that involves, that if you just scroll to the bottom, there’s a click now to register and they take the classes are free and off you go.
And if you wanted to enrol in the eight week course after the taster class and go back online and you can just register online. Yeah.
And how long is the taster course for.
2 hours H weekly course. How long does that take. Is that 2 hours.
2 hours, Yes. Yeah. So 7 to 9 and I’m really strict on all of them and I finish dead on nine and then I get as much information as I can out in that time. And it’s a lot there’s a lot that you can learn. Great. So the content of the of the eight week courses, I’m just going to go over briefly on what the classes the class content is.
So class one, Class one, we look at the myths and illusions around a meditation on mindfulness practice. We also get to look at setting a practice up, you know, where to meditate, when to meditate, how long do you meditate for? And we look at the difference between a formal meditation and an informal mindfulness practice. So we set up your formal meditation practice and introduce a licensed practice.
So, you know, getting used to just opening my when you brush your teeth or when you eat or when you’re listening. And so we just start to get the ball rolling would because one plus two is all about stress so that that kind of fight or flight reaction that I think we’ve we’ve we’ve touched on just briefly there we learn how to respond to it rather than react to it.
And we look at the stresses in our lives and we also look at coping mechanisms that we might be using, such as alcohol, cigarettes or harder drugs, just with the intention. Just to be curious about that, you know, just to understand, am I using, you know, maybe food or or something? You know, we’re not saying that you have to stop all of that.
We’re just going to bring our awareness to it. You know, And look at that. Plus three is emotional pain. So we all experience emotional pain at some point. But if we all ruminates on which I am, I think quite a lot of that, it’s when we’re going over and over and over something that probably happened years ago that we we have no control over now, but we can get stuck on it.
And so we look a lot at that and look how that can produce depressive episodes. So we look at how much this practice can prevent depression and depressive episodes. And there’s a lot of research that I give out in that class because something I studied at uni, a class for, we look at fear, how to approach. There is a kind of feel affair and do it anyway.
And this identifying as is a big class class for we look at kind of who am I? And we’re not who we think we are and how we can invest in roles and make our last guy miserable if we do that. Just like B Class Russell Class five is all about acceptance. Don’t know. Letting go. And we look at self-compassion.
We look at being kind to ourselves as one of the most difficult relationships we can have with ourselves. So we look at offering kindness to ourselves.
We’re looking at physical pain, how to use enlightened practices around physical spaces of having an acceptance of physical pain without trying to, you know, try to get rid of it. We don’t become the patient again. Always going to be that physical pain, but we cannot change our relationship to it. And we look at bringing happiness into our lives by doing things that nourishes you.
And I think that gives genuine pleasure and comfort. Seven and eight We look at how to keep the practice going so that, you know, class starts get a little bit anxious because, you know, the safety net, of course, is being taken away. So I offer them advice on how to keep the practice going by keeping in touch with me.
You know, I give I offer people that I know that, you know, that offer meditation and mindfulness classes that they can attend. And a class eight me Look at what you’ve learned. Know how you will progress from here to Emma.
What do you think you would be doing now if you hadn’t come across? I have an easy way.
To do are, you know, I mean, it sounds so dramatic. It sounds so dramatic when I say so. I don’t know. I don’t think I’d be I don’t think I’d be here. Honestly, I, I think I would have to. I would have done something. Yeah. Horrible. When I was experiencing massive depression quite a few years ago, my parents were they were dying of.
Thank God I wasn’t a drinker then. Yeah. So, you know, I just wouldn’t underestimate what and a couple of.
Other mentioned about the feedback that you get from clients who’ve attended the course. What kind of things do people say?
Oh, it’s just it’s just life changing. It’s just they just say it’s life changing. Their relationships have changed in in the family, you know, But they will have done life changing things like they will have walked away from that job. They will have walked away from that relationship. And then just lovely. I love it when I get an email when they send me pictures of where they’ve meditated in the morning.
Look what I’ve been meditating from this morning and that, you know, it’s kind of like Italy or Switzerland, you know, Oh my goodness. Just fell. And they were just thinking so much. You know, they are still doing it. I’m still doing it. And it’s that that I love. That’s the feedback. I love that I’m still out there, was still doing my meditation practice and I’m up early and I’m loving it.
I’m out in nature and, you know, it’s it’s that’s what I love. That’s, that’s the feedback. It’s like when you hear from a smoke in a smoke at the start and, you know, in years to come, they’re still saying, I’m still I’m still free of it. And they still got that kind of element of excitement around it all.
It’s that it’s that that’s that’s the best feedback I think you can ever get.
Because sometimes you think, oh, mindfulness. That’s only for people who do sit on a mountain.
And that’s I mean, it’s so many myths that says, you know, you don’t know. Offering only meditations is one of the things I say is the meditation practice itself. It can be at least, you know, it can be three breath in the morning. It doesn’t have to be 30 minutes, you know, an hour. It’s just free breath. You know, let’s get a starting point, you know, and then it doesn’t have to be done.
Three sets. It can be done lying down. I offer all the meditation on the eight week course, lying down if you need to. Meditation, nothing we want to be doing is sitting on a cushion is so uncomfortable. So why are you meditating for years? It’s still uncomfortable sitting on the kitchen you’re next to don’t do it. Then you know, lay, lay down, lay down.
And it’s for every it’s for anyone. It’s not like you have to have a background understanding or be particularly spiritual.
No, not at all. You don’t have to have any background. Just, you know, this is quite interesting. Maybe in what what is it all about? What is it all about? And then I you know, you know, you know, I suggest everything is on a suggestion. I suggest you do the practice every day. If you want the results, I suggest you practice every day.
But I’m not going to you’re not going to get ticked off if you don’t do it.
You know, you don’t have a lot.
Of the homework would be the meditation. Silent would be the meditation. But I’m using what we’ve talked about in the class. I just said, just to be clear, it’s around, you know, So when we talk about stress in the fight or flight reaction, you know, that’s okay. So, you know, it’s not simply that when you’re in a queue at Tesco or, you know, Sainsbury’s or what have you, and the person in front of you is really taking their time in the beginning to annoy you.
Okay. So we’re just going to turn towards that. We’re going to turn tools that we’re going to use in licensed practice these days. We can respond to that rather than react to this sort of, you know, putting, you know, it’s maybe we can just bring our attention to our friends, maybe take a couple of moments, have a look around, you know, and then look at the point, your point of view, you know, because I got something going on.
Why are they taking so long? And I maybe it’s because the person I talking to might be the question. The only person I see today might be telling me, you know, we don’t know what’s going on in their lives. Everybody, often everybody’s, you know, they’re not doing it to annoy you.
What if they all they.
Said you have to do it to accent. Everybody’s flawed, you know, And if that’s something that they would have to work on, you know, I’m sure just having a you know, an acceptance of that, you know, some people are just some people will just do it deliberately. But, you know, why are they doing that? That’s something that’s that’s not quite right in their lives.
That’s not natural. It’s not natural to want to, you know, genuinely annoy people. But if you are if that is your intention, then maybe needs looking at, you know, why why what was that moment in your life that created that feeling that you have to deliberately annoy people.
Like is the idea that you just disappear like any annoyance or any feeling inside of your body just ups and that right? Or is it that you silly experience or is it the you watch it do its thing.
I think all of that. I think all of that. I think the intention is not for it to go away. So we’re not kind of looking at it to with the intention. So this I don’t want to feel this way we’re not when that that would be wrong way away we’re turning towards it. And I think living it, you know, where does your anger sit, you know, when you angry a frustrated when is it in the body?
It’s just curious about where is it, you know, bring bring your attention there and actually have a set feel, you know, what’s it doing and then which is not reacting to it. We’re not you know, just you know, the anger is in my stomach and it’s swirling around of it. You know, if I react to it, it’ll come up and it’s full of words I probably will regret.
So, you know, I’m aware of that. So, yes, I would allow the energy to come up. But also, I mean, with anger, we do spend quite a lot time looking at anger. And, you know, so we respond to the feelings of anger rather than react when if anger is is still there, then we go and we show somewhere in the hills, in the shower, in your car or something on scene, do it really loudly, you know, release and release the energy, release it missing.
So you’re not suppressing it. Otherwise we just become angry people that we want the anger to come out, but we’re not directing it at anybody. It takes practice, takes a lot of practice, but once you get the idea of it, it’s it is effective. We can spend a lot of time actually looking at that. It’s learning from our mistakes, but they become a lessons.
And maybe it’s like a never ending journey.
Yeah, it’s it’s, it’s also a meditation mindfulness practice. You wouldn’t just do an eight week course and say, Oh, I’ve done that, I’ve done mindfulness, I know about that. Now, this is something that you would have for the rest of your life, I would say with any other thing, the anchor offices, the office is something that we will do and we will never have to look at it again.
You know, you stop smoking using easy way. You don’t have to go back and read the book or, you know, you don’t have to go over it. You’ve done you know, you stopped drinking, you’ve done that, you know, So whatever it is you’ve done with mindfulness, it’s not that mindfulness is something that you put in place and you have to keep it with you.
It is a new approach. It’s a new approach. We are creating neural pathways, different neural pathways as a result of the mindfulness practice. But they just need to be they need to be kind of formed. And the only way to form is to keep practising, keep practising that. That’s what keeps you just touching with that every day. And then that just reminds me not to get pulled in that direction or that direction.
Or like once you’ve been introduced to this approach, a new way of thinking or awareness or understanding of who you truly are, there is no going back. Like there’s no you can’t then forget, can you?
No, no, no. That’s right. No, no, no, no, no. If you’ve been to Paris, you can never not have been to Paris once. You kind of got it and you’re doing it. You can’t not know that. You can’t, you know, you got it. You’ve got it. Yeah. Yeah.
Thank you so much for your time and for sharing it. And let us know if anyone is interested in doing the taster session or to the online video programme. You just read the book, just go online. All the information is there. Island cards dot com And how often are the taster sessions run.
About twice a month now. John Fletcher amongst them.
Well, thank you, Emma. That was really interesting and well done to all the hard work for you and to the mindfulness programme and its development. And thanks to everyone for listening to today’s episode. Please do subscribe to the series. You can hear more inspiring stories about how an easy way is changing lives for the better. Until next time.