Saturday, April 21, 2012

Tickle your Amygdala

A book by Neil Slade

Now here is an amazing story. A few years ago in my search of information about self help tools to return to the state of ease I stumbled upon the books by Neil Slade. 

The book, 'The secret of the dormant brain lab' is Neil's remarkable personal story on how he got in contact with D.A.T. Stingo a renegade scientist who taught people (on a remote mountain) a technique to turn on incredible creativity, intelligence, pleasure, and even paranormal abilities that is as easy as clicking on a light switch!  (for the link to the book see below)

The other book I read was 'The frontal lobe supercharge' which is about the technique D.A.T. Stingo taught. (for the link to the book see below)

I really liked these books and saw a lot of similarities in the technique described with my own work as an osteopathic body-coach. I gave the book top marks in Amazon where I had bought it and left small comment about how much I liked it etc.

So imagine my surprise when Neil contacted me at the end of last year wanting an interview for his next book.

Today I received the kindle version of the book 'Tickle your Amygdala' which has the transcription of the interview we had and that of many others including doctors, actors incl. Terry Jones form Monty Python) , artists, a neurosurgeon,... The book starts with a fun and simple explanation of what amygdala tickling is all about and part two is a more detailed explanation of it + 52 transcribed  interviews + practical practical exercises.

Really looking forward now to read the book and all the other people's stories. 

If you like a copy of the book follow the link below. It's the kindle version that can also be read on an Ipad.

Happy reading and tickling. 


Sunday, April 15, 2012

Health is a Process

We tolerate even see it s a right that smokers take time out of their routine to smoke their cigarette outside. What we don't seem to accept, take as a right is that we - the non smoker - take time to go outside to breathe fresh air. Some of you might even feel guilt just by the thought of taking that time: What would the colleagues/boss say? Even now when I write this observation I can feel my own abdomen knotting up just by imagining needing to explain a colleague or superior going for a fresh air pause. 

How has it come this far? 
How conditioned am I?.... are we?

Health is a process. 

Have you ever asked yourself the question: What is health? 

Write down 10 behaviours that contribute to health. 

How many of those 10 are you applying in every day life? 

Maybe you could have some meaningful conversations about this topic with your friends and family. Meaningful and not a I'm wright you're wrong match, use a talking piece if you feel that will help guide or slow down the conversation. 

How do you feel about your answer?

I'm not here to judge you. But when you're reading this book then it means most likely that you are seeking something. By now you probably realise that you won't find the answers you seek in this book but rather within you and that these words are a mere catalyst for that process. Your health process. Or at least that's my intention. 

Health is a process. Health hasn't stopped when you're ill nor have we achieved it when we are healthy.  

Health is very active when we're hanging over the toilet bowl trowing-up after a big night out or when that steak tartare (raw minced meat dish) wasn't that fresh after all. 

You might feel as sick as a dog but imagine if your body hadn't reacted with the 'get this out of here as quickly as possible' reaction. What would that excess alcohol or the bacteria have done when they had stayed in your body! Mmmm... the probability of dying would have been increased if anything... 

No, being sick isn't always a sign of not being in health. However when conditions are chronic - you keep on throwing up day after day - then one could speak of impaired health. In other words, the health process will still be active but is out of balance. Its self regulatory mechanism is impaired and needs help. 

Time for reflection... 

Lets have a look at what the World Health Organisation (WHO) writes about health. Their definition is: Health is a state of complete of physical, mental and social wellbeing and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity. 

 I never get it what they are trying to say, do you? But what I like you to reflect on is the word 'state' in this definition. (Although the word complete in this definition is also questionable) 

Health is a 'state'?

I'm not an expert on language, any language for that matter, not even my mother tongue which is Dutch or as Belgians like to call it, Flemish. That aside, saying health is a state then I interpret health as being a pinnacle something you try to reach, a far fetched ideal, a goal, a peak, in any case something short in time...

In psychology for example they use the term an emotional state which last only a few seconds. This compared to a mood which lasts from a couple of hours to some days and an emotional trait last more then a few years. I do recognise that before I started to look into what health is, that when I was ill I indeed tended to see it as the goal to be free from the annoyances that were bothering me and wanted to get rid of them as quickly as possible (the latter I still do I'm human after all). Now I try to live a life where I listens to my health and try as much as possible to interact with it. But it doesn't stop me from being ill or having illness symptoms. Like the other day a conversation got me deeply hurt (old wounds that got poked at) and ended left me frustrated and turned inward (best that you don't talk to me for a while when I'm in that mood) and 24h later I developed herpes zoster around the left corner of my mouth. I had the herpes zoster blisters turn up before ones it was after a dentist visit. Again it was through frustration. No, not towards the dentists, she's lovely and very careful and considerate I was so frustrated by the sensation the slow frequency drill that dentists use, gave me. It provoked anger in me and I was frustrated because I didn't want to feel that anger. This internalisation of frustration/anger seems to express itself with giving me herpes zoster on a place around my mouth. 

I'm not sure if you're still following me. Hope I do make sense to you here.

To get back to health as a process, what I want to convey is that health is not a moment, nor is it a peak. Health is a process it is ongoing and it is present all the time. Yes it might be out of balance but if you're still alive then health is within you. If you are alive and ill then health has been perturbed in it's expression. But in whatever condition you are health is there until the day you exit this world.

Question: How long does a mountaineer stay on the top of Mount Everest? 

Answer: It depends on the weather....

Answer continued: The weather will determine if it is seconds, minutes but it will not be more then a couple of hours. (I did verify this with a Belgian mountaineer who's been on the top) 

What do you learn from that? I learned that arriving is not the goal/purpose. Health is not a goal in itself it is a process. Just like the mountaineer his expeditions' goal/purpose is not arriving on top of the mountain it is the whole process from the idea to the return home and beyond. Imagine if arriving on the top was the sole purpose/goal... 

Doesn't take away that it is a human condition that arriving is exhilarating and a moment we cherish. When this book is published (for you who are reading this on my blog yes it is meant for a book) also I will pop a bottle of champagne or two to celebrate but in the meanwhile while writing, reflecting upon its content and all the moments in-between I'm enjoying consciously the process and in my heart celebrate each word.

Health, process... not a moment, nor a peak... ongoing. So right now! 

How do you feel about that? 

The Dalai Lama invited Richard Davidson (The Emotional Life of your Brain to his home in India in 1992 to pose a question: Scientists often study depression, anxiety and fear, but why not devote your work to the causes of positive human qualities like happiness and compassion? the exiled Tibetan spiritual leader asked. "I couldn't give him a good answer," recalled Davidson, a University of Wisconsin-Madison neuroscientist. (From the Dalai Lama's website: 

I'm asking you again when have you asked yourself the question what is health? Like me you think and know more about disease don't you? We've been brought up - Westerners - in a society which seems to have forgotten that health is a process that needs conscious attention and can not be given out of hand. No, the doctor or therapist is not there to give you health. All the books in the world will not do that nor does this one. No proposed diet, pill, tool will give you health. 

Click, click, click... is that your brain processing this information... 

Reality check: Who am I? Yes I know that what I write is not the truth. It is what I think and for me it is real but is it the truth. I don't know. My limited experiencing is forming these thoughts and I'm just sharing it with you. End of reality check, or at least for now. 

How do you feel? I will ask this question a lot as it is important that you take a moment to reflect, think for yourself and question my words.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

What is Osteopathic Body-Coaching?

Before I explain what Osteopathic Body-Coaching is let me go back to the essence of osteopathy and the different approaches within osteopathy. 

(see previous blogs for more information)
Osteopathy is a manual facilitated health care approach based on the principles that: 
  • The body a is a dynamic unit
  • In the body all parts are interrelated and interdependent
  • The body possesses a self regulatory and self healing mechanism.
Osteopathic Manipulative Treatment (A.T. Still)
The osteopath is there to aid the perturbed self regulatory and self healing mechanism and relieves through the use of different techniques the disturbances of motion.
Cranial Osteopathy (W.G. Sutherland)
Cranial Osteopathy is a more refined form of osteopathy that uses the stimulation of the Primary Respiratory Mechanism (PRM) to encourages the release of stresses and tensions throughout the body and head.
Biodynamic Osteopathy (J. Jealous)
In Biodynamic Osteopathy no force or manipulation is applied. The osteopath is a catalyst for the self healing and self regulatory system to go through 'the Neutral' from where healing can start. 
Osteopathic Body-Coaching 
Developed by Tom Meyers Osteopathic Body-Coaching brings together the three osteopathic trends: structural, cranio-sacral and biodynamic. It is especially suited for conditions triggered by the effects of stress: neck and back pain, digestive problems, headaches, slow healing of injuries, insomnia, cognitive impairment,...

Osteopathic Body-Coaching is a Body-Mind approach. Mind-Body approaches like positive affirmations and Mindfullness are very popular and well researched. A body-Mind approach - although as old as life itself - is a lesser known. Current therapies are based on the dualistic view that body and mind are separate and it is only know that through neurosciences that scientists come to understand that body and mind are a unit.

Osteopathic Body-Coaching as previously mentioned is recommended for people suffering from stress. Chronic stress creates physical tension (neck, shoulder, back,...) but also has a negative influence on the immune system, digestion (stomach ulcers) and the way we think (concentration problems, difficulty making decisions,...)  and feel (moody, no energy, it's all too much, procrastination,...). Osteopathic Body-Coaching facilitates the innate healing mechanism to Reaset (Return to Ease) the stress response and thus has a positive influence on all the above.

Osteopathic body-coaching has also an energetic component through biofield facilitation (some known it by the name of aura). We are not only body and mind... we after all energy.


An osteopathic body-coach is also an elementary health care coach. We must unlearn that we can't help ourselves and learn that we can and more that we can help others too. This sharing of health information is done during the consultations but also in trainings where everyone is welcome. For more information visit

Biofield: "It's a complex energy structure of different fields, different natures, and different origins. There are electromagnetic and gravitational fields, as well as fields of molecules and, to some extent, fields of unknown parameters. So the biological field of a living thing, also known as its "aura," is an invisible structure that correlates its activity to create a unique and united system." - Dr. K. Korotkoc

What is Biodynamic Osteopathy?

Continuation from the previous blog:

Biodynamic Osteopathy was developed by James Jealous and is based on W.G. Sutherlands' Cranial Osteopathy
J. Jealous added another element termed 'the Neutral'. This neutral is achieved without any force or interference applied by the osteopath. The osteopath is there to facilitate the inherent Breath of Life, the life force within the Primary Respiratory Mechanism (PRM). 
The neutral can be seen as the midpoint between (thoracic) breathing in and breathing out cycle but then within the PRM. In disease, with injuries,... this PRM cycle is disregulated and causes interference in the healing process.

More information:

What is Cranial Osteopathy?

(sometimes also refered to as cranio sacral therapy)
Osteopathic Manual Treatment (OMT) was developed by Dr. A.T. Still (1828 - 1919). Cranial Osteopathy or Osteopathy in the Cranial Field (OCF) on the other hand was developed by W.G. Sutherland (1873 - 1954) a student of Dr. Still. 
Cranial osteopathy is a more refined form of osteopathic treatment (no manipulations of the spine) that encourages the release of stresses and tensions throughout the body and head using the Primary Respiratory Mechanism (PRM).
Primary Respiratory Mechanism
According to Sutherland there is a dynamic interrelation between the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) and the physiological function of all cells in the human body and in particular those of the nervous system.
Primary - It is a system that comes “first.” It underlies all of life's processes and gives dynamism, form and substance to all of anatomy and physiology, driving all functions of the body.
Respiratory - It is the spark that gives rise to the breath as it moves through the tissues. It is the foundation of metabolism. It enables the exchange of gases and other substances between compartments of the body.
Mechanism - It manifests as a specific motion of the body, a system composed of many parts that work together to create a whole, greater than the sum of the parts.
The 5 components of the PRM
  • The fluctuation of the cerebrospinal fluid (Breath of Life).
  • The function of the reciprocal tension membrane.
  • The mobility of the neural tube.
  • The articular mobility of the cranial bones and the involuntary mobility of the sacrum between the ilia.
According to Sutherland the main function of this mechanism is to unimpeded metabolic processes in the body.

More information:

What is osteopathy?

Osteopathy is a manual facilitated health care approach based on the principle(s) that the body is a dynamic unit in which all parts are interrelated and interdependent and which possesses a self regulatory and self healing mechanism. 
An osteopath uses his fine-tuned sense of touch to feel disturbances in motion within the body-matrix. Health is when the body's motions (skeletal, muscular, facial, organic,...) are in balance. 
Hence the word 'BioMotions' (name of my website) or life in motion.
The osteopath is there to aid the perturbed self regulatory and self healing mechanism and relieves through the application of different manual techniques the disturbances of motion. The aim is to enhances vitality and overall functioning of the patient. 
Osteopathic Manual Technique (OMT) includes amongst others:
  • Soft-Tissue Techniques
  • Spinal corrections
  • Fascia Therapy
  • Muscle Energy Technique
  • Lymphatic Technique
  • Abdominal Technique
Dynamic unit
The current conventional medicine model is based on the basis that body and mind are split (dualism). In osteopathy body and mind are part of an interrelated and interdependent whole.
Self regulatory and self healing mechanism
The human body is always working to maintain a state of balanced function. For example, blood pressure, blood sugar and the heart rate are actively kept within a normal range. When there is a laceration or tear in the tissues, a physician can assist by cleaning the wound and bringing the edges together, but healing occurs by the action of inherent forces and processes within the body. 1
Dr. A.T. Still (The father of osteopathy) stated, “All the remedies necessary to health exist in the human body.” He understood that within the tissues, there is an inherent wisdom, a wise all-knowing restorative force, an intelligence within every cell that keeps the body well. When a state of discord arises, this healing force acts to restore functional balance and harmony. Sometimes the body’s self-healing forces can be impaired or impeded by disease or structural imbalance. The osteopathic physician is trained to augment these intrinsic mechanisms to help the body to better and more quickly heal itself. 1