Category: therapists

An Interview With Author Mitchell Thompson

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Mitchell Thompson is the author of “Introspective Rationale: The Odyssey of Theodicy; here is a link to his website:

 

 

https://www.irot.me

 

Q: What is “Introspective Rationale.”  about?

 

A: Introspective Rationale is a nonfiction historical narrative that journeys the reader on a quest in understanding the deeper connection between major worldly religions and their historical context. These intimate connections, once revealed, display certain commonalities in both ethics and ideology. Such ideological parallels can be further understood in their application within modern science and mathematics – namely quantum mechanics. For example, there exists many numerological significance in ancient scripture; numbers of meaning that translate within modern fields of scientific study. One must first understand the history of both religion and science before gaining a deeper insight on their dualistic partnership.

 

Q: What made you want to write a book about individual subjectivity versus the objectivity of the universe?

 

A: For much of our lives, societal individuals are plagued with a yearning for instant gratification. Before I began writing my book, I was helping my mother take care of her bed-ridden father who was dying of dementia. This man, though my grandfather, was estranged to me and my family. He had not approved of my mother marrying a man of color. In taking care of him, we inevitably grew to bond. It was during this bonding that I began to realize how my subjective perception of our relationship (or lack thereof) was irrelevant in the face of our objective kinship. I began to notice certain traits of myself within him – even at the height of his dementia. I had never had a grandfather; for my Dad’s father had passed before I was born. However, the wisdom I learned from my estranged grandfather granted me new insight within the nature of myself. This experience inspired me to write about the concept of dissolving the ego: to differentiate the importance of both individual objectivity and subjectivity.

 

Q: What kind of educational background do you have?

 

A: I went to public school, and finished in the top percent of my high school class. Upon graduating, I began to attend a prestigious college in William Jewell College where I sought to triple major in Engineering, Physics, and Mathematics. Because I attained many college credit hours in high school, I developed a keen understanding for higher level mathematics and dimensional reasoning as only a college freshman. As it pertains to writing, I have always loved doing so but more as a hobby. I took many advanced placement literature classes in high school, as well as college English, so my informal writing has some formal foundations.

 

Q: What kind of research did you do for your book?

 

A: Comparing and contrasting hours of work in studying between my own research in writing IROT and that of obtaining a doctorate in philosophy:

 

Undergrad

120 credit hours required

16 week semester

15 credit hours per semester

30 hours of work a week (6 hours a day)

16 x 30 = 480 hours of work per semester

8 semesters of schooling (BA/BS)

8 x 480 = 3,840 hours of total work

2 years of Masters (MA)

15 credit hours

30 hours of work a week (6 hours a day)

4 semesters of schooling

4 x 480 = 1920 hours of work total

(1920 + 3840 = 5,760 hours of total work between BA/BS and MA)

PhD

120 credit hours (generally required)

16 week semester

15 credit hours a week

30 hours of work a week (6 hours a day)

16 x 30 = 480 hours of work per semester

8 semesters of schooling (PhD)

8 x 480 = 3,840 hours of work total

3,840 + 5,760 = 9,600 hours of total work to obtain PhD

 

Research/writing for IROT

41 months total

14 months of stagnant

27 months “hardcore”

14 months of stagnant

4 hours a day (maximum)

5 days a week

20 hours of work a week

14 months = 61 weeks

61 x 20 = 1,220 hours of total stagnant work

27 months “hardcore

“Hardcore”: 12 hours a day, 6 day’s a week (minimum), 72 hours a week

12 hours of work a day

6 days a week

72 hours of work a week

27 months =  117 weeks of hardcore work

117 x 72 = 8,424 hours of “hardcore” work

41 months total

1,220 + 8,424 = 9,644 total hours of work for writing IROT

 
Q: How would you define elevated consciousness?

 

A: Elevated consciousness is the state of being that exists ahead of the ego. When one dissolves the ego, they are able to attain an elevated state of awareness. A conscientious state that can differentiate between objective requirements and subjective desirements.

 

Q: How does one attain this consciousness?

 

A: One attains elevated consciousness by dissolving the ego. The ego is the subjective sense of self. In rationalizing the introspective process, one is able to step away from the ego’s deceptive perception and see reality in an objective light.

 

Q: What is the most successful thing you have done to promote your book?

 

A: I have made both a website and a Facebook author profile page.

 

https://www.facebook.com/mitchellgthompson

 

https://www.irot.me

 

 

Q: What kind of a day job do you have and how does it influence your writing?

 

A: I work two jobs: a morning gig and an afternoon gig. The morning job is at a supply warehouse, while the afternoon job is as a kickboxing instructor. The morning job forces me to wake up at 4 AM everyday, which gives me the discipline needed to write on days I don’t feel like writing. The kickboxing instructor position has allowed me to work with a myriad of different people – allowing me insight into many minds of varying beliefs. Such insight influences the way I write in appealing to a general audience.

 

Q: What philosophers have had the most influence on your work?

 

A: I know very little on many different philosophers. I am a master of some and an expert of none. However, of all that I’ve adopted from, Friedrich Nietzsche and Baruch Spinoza were perhaps the most influential.

 

Q: If you could elevate the consciousness of any famous person, who would it be and why?

 

A: Hmm… perhaps Kanye West. Mainly because he seems to have the right idea in certain ideals, but is lost in translating most of his thoughts through an egocentric lens of insanity. Most people of social and monetary affluence attain such fame due to their evolving of the ego rather than dissolving.

 

 

Eliza’s interviews are done by email; all answers are unedited and come right from the lovely fingertips of her subjects:)

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An Interview With Self-Help Author Ms. Joe Bacon

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Ms. Joe Bacon is the author of 30 Things That Scare Women About Themselves! Here is a link to the books Amazon page:

https://goo.gl/at202K

 

Q: What inspired you to write, 30 Things That Scare Women About Themselves!

 

A:  I was inspired by the conversations that continued to surround me by women. I was constantly thinking oh they are like me or it is always someone in worse off shape so be grateful and see the positive in life.

 

Q:  What qualifies you to write a self-help book?

 

A: I think anyone who pays attention to life can write a self help book, especially with so many air heads walking around staring in the clouds or their smart devices. They do tend to make people dumber.

 

Q: What kind of research did you do for the book?

 

A: At first, I didn’t know that this book would develop, but in trying to write another book, I started to look at all of the topics, saw the potential & began to interview women from all walks of life.

 

Q: What are a few examples of the kind of things that scare women about themselves?

 

A: Having your child molested and not know how to help them thru it. Finding out your spouse cheated on you. Having your child hate you. Failing at your goals. being confused about your sexuality.

 

Q: What kind of day job do you have and how does it influence your writing?

 

A: I manage the office of a tech company in San Francisco, CA. & flip houses in the US.

 

Q: What are some self help books that have helped you?

 

A: Rich Dad Poor Dad, The Secret, and almost any book by Tony Robbins. I love him.

 

Q: What have you done to promote your book?

 

A: Interviews, social media, and beating the pavement so I can speak to people.

 

Q: What other kinds of writing do you do?

 

A:  Real life issues like PPD , abuse, or family issues.

 

Q: How can you tell a good self-help book from a bad one?

 

A:  I feel that every book is different, so if it helps you then it is a good book for you.

 

Q: What scares you about yourself?

 

A:  I am scared of failure and having my child not like me. I didn’t like my bio-logical mom and I fear that will happen with my son and I. I find myself trying to exceed with what ever he wants or needs of me. We have a great relationship now and I hope it doesnt change.

 

Please note; Eliza’s interviews are done by email. All answers are unedited and come right from the lovely fingertips of her subjects.

An Interview With Writer and Counselor Marilyn Redmond

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Marilyn Redmond is a counselor and an author of self-help books; here is a link to her website:

 

http://marilynredmondbooks.blogspot.com/

 

Q: What made you interested in being a counselor?

 

A: A woman taking my college class asked if I did counseling. I responded yes, because as a teacher, I did counseling with my students for many years. Over the years, countless clients have come for help.

 

Q: What kind of training have you had?

 

A: I took a course that ordained and trained me for a spiritual minister as a counselor and a reader. I have taken beginning and advanced courses for learning to do Past Life Regressions. I am a member of the International Board for Regression Therapy. After several classes for hypnotherapy, I became a member of the American Board of Hypnotherapy. I am a lifetime member of Edgar Cayce’s Association for Research and Enlightenment. I have taught for them and other programs for over 20 years. I have taught in colleges, wellness centers, and metaphysical groups.

 

Q: What do you offer to clients that a psychotherapist or a psychologist can’t?

 

A: I am able to find the root problem of the situation and resolve it from the beginning at a subconscious level. This removes the symptoms, the need for medications, or repeated problems.  Most people just superficially discuss the current situation and nothing changes.

 

Q: Your Amazon page says you had a syndicated column. What was the name of the column and how did you obtain syndication?

 

A: I wrote for the Pacific Northwest Spirit my column was, “Living in the Light” which went to the western United States and Canada. There were other newspapers for Edgar Cayce’s organization in the rest of the United States and they picked up my articles and published them in their papers, too.  Currently, I am an international columnist for “The Sussex Newspaper” on the internet.

 

Q: What kind of day job do you have and how does it affect your pursuit of counseling?

 

A: I am a retired teacher and have devoted my current time to helping others find the truth in their lives while carrying the message of love, as an international award winning writer, speaker, teacher, counselor, columnist, consultant, and artist.

 

Q: What is Paradigm Busters about?

 

A: It is the “ultimate how to book”. My self-help book has the actual steps to change your life from the old unbalanced foundation into one that grows, prospers, and is sustainable. Each chapter is a principle for a productive loving life. It addresses the physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual issues. It explains the subconscious and spirit parts that we do not see.  This  really runs our lives. It is about raising your consciousness into a higher consciousness of love that people call heaven on earth.

 

My latest book just out is “Road to Success”.  It is an inspirational book for people needing support to move into their dreams and purpose.

 

Q: How can it help people to reveal who they really are?

 

A: “With the book, “Paradigm Busters, Reveal the Real You”, a reader finds it a workbook to apply the principles in their lives.  It is only through application that change can happen. My poems, pictures and work sections allow for right brain action as well as written knowledge.  When a person is able to get honest to release their negative thinking, words, and actions, and then substitute a positive comportment of grace, their real loving self can emerge, and their lives become happy, balanced, and free of their ego. Each chapter is a step into changing from the old into the new you.

 

“Road to Success”, offers lots of tools, new thinking, and support to move into a place that offers reality, happiness, and inner victory.  When a person knows it is possible, they have the choice to overcome their most difficult circumstances and come out on top; anyone can.  It is a choice to follow your heart.

 

Q: You say you are recovering from ten different addictions; what are they?

 

A: I was addicted to alcohol, prescription drugs, smoking, working, overachieving, and several people, mother, stepdad, half sister, ex-husband, son, and daughter. People addiction is often called co-dependency.

 

Q: What are some challenging problems you have come across as a counselor?

 

A: I released dark energy/entities.  One said it was Satan, several said they were the devil; two women had a huge snake inside, and I have released more benign entitites. It took several years, helping a woman get off marijuana and stop drinking. Right now, I am helping a domestic violent couple.

 

Q: What are some reasons people stay in abusive relationships?

 

A:  I found from my experience that I was emotionally 3 years old, insecure, and unloved. I had to hang on to someone to make it. We look to others to make us okay, because we are not okay with ourselves. The abuse is discounted for security.  When I grew into self-esteem, trust of God, took steps of courage, I was able to leave, even though I was still 3 years old emotionally.  I have spent the last years growing into an adult. Growing up is not for sissies.

 Please note; Eliza’s interviews are done by email. All answers are unedited and come right from the lovely fingertips of her subjects.

 

 

An Interview With Bless & Clear Owner Gillian Harris

 

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Gillian Harris is the owner of Bless & Clear, which is a business that focuses on sacred ceremonies. She also owns Valet of the Dolls which is an all-female valet company; here is a link to the Bless & Clear website:

 

http://blessandclear.com/

 

Q: What inspired you to start Bless & Clear?

 

A: People need metaphysical services. I wanted to create a place where they could come and find a practitioner in the area of their situation or need.

 

Along with being a medium, channel and intuit, I’m a Light Worker. Have been one my entire life but began to work with Light consciously in the mid 1990s. A Light Worker is anyone who goes about moving energy consciously in service to others. By this, I mean the literally moving of energy; the at-will push, pull, drawing, mapping, blessing and clearing of energy! Clearing negative energy, calling in & expanding positive energy.  I guess, this love of manipulating energy, especially on behalf of myself or someone else’s wellbeing is why I was drawn to Reiki around 2001. Over several years I climbed the ladder of knowledge in this field and was eventually anointed a Reiki Master. Being a master only means that I commit to teaching others about Reiki; life energy and how to use it for healing people, places, things…

By 2012 I’d fulfilled requirements through the International Assembly of Spiritual Healers and Earth Stewards Congregations and was ordained as a Minister. I needed to figure out what to DO with that (!).  First thing I thought of was how much I enjoy House Blessing ceremonies.  I LOVE them.  I don’t necessarily LOVE House CLEARINGS; certain types I love, certain types I don’t!  In the beginning of the company, I hadn’t done many. Especially not the ones with angry entities and truly spooky stuff going on where ya might get hit by a flying whatnot! But I had a friend! Buddy and fellow minister Lori Camacho had done scores and scores of these spooky clearings. So when we started I said the plan is, “I’ll bless, you clear!” Lol! There are now more ministers to pick from and I do a number of clearing (peaceful ones!) myself!

 

So the initial intention of Bless & Clear was focused on sacred ceremonies to bless and clear homes, businesses, projects and eventually relationships.  We do a slew of wonderful weddings.  In the last year, we’ve also begun to see a growing number of request for Conscious Decoupling ceremonies (which is a blessing and clearing, by the way) which I’ve found can be as blissful as nuptials!!

I guess the short answer is: I started the company because, I love to bless and clear stuff!!!

 

Q: How would you define metaphysics?

 

A: Metaphysics is that field of philosophy that deals with what some call SPOOKY stuff cuz they can’t see it with their own eyes! Lol! Concepts like knowingness, consciousness, cause and effect, time, space, being(ness).  I like to say that simply: Meta means outside of. Physical means physical! So, Metaphysical is – in real basic terms, outside of the physical. Reiki is Metaphysical. Prayer is also metaphysical. When the phone rings and you already know who it is – you’re in the midst of a metaphysical experience! Entities or…PEOPLE who no longer have bodies and are still in earth realm and show up as foggy or other types of forms – are metaphysical! Metaphysics is the rest of life! It’s the part most overlooked but people are deeply fascinated by stuff outside the physical. Hence all the metaphysical type TV shows as well as the success of rock and crystal shops! There is a growing appeal for these stones and gems that we now know carry wonderful energy to enhance our lives as they work…metaphysically.

 

Q: What is a transition midwife?

 

A: A friend. A companion during this extremely sacred chapter.  Just as entering this incarnation was, exiting this lifetime is also a …BIRTH.

 

Transition Midwifery is especially sought by or for those in the midst of a conscious transition. Meaning, they know their time in this incarnation is ending soon. They may have questions about crossing. They may merely want the companionship of someone who is not afraid. Someone they can express feelings to that they may not feel comfortable expressing to loved ones who are already oh so fragile at this time.

 

And then…things can happen during this chapter for a transitioning person. Very ‘metaphysical’ things.  In my book, ‘The Secrets of Lost; The Validity of Multi-Dimensional Existence’ I write about the medical term, ‘terminal lucidity’.  Part of this kind of lucidity involves the awareness of visits from relatives and friends from across the veil. Gathering to assist in your crossing, to many people transitioning, the disincarnate loved ones are as clear as day and there is very lucid conversation. There are other ways terminal lucidity reveals itself.  Friends and family may unwittingly discount or interrupt these metaphysical interactions. A transition midwife comes in handy now! She is not only there for the transitioning one, but for their loved ones and can offer understanding of what is happening.

Depending on the midwife’s spiritual orientation she will have a set of tools to offer in the experience; In my case, intuition, mediumship, channeling and an acknowledged relationship, connection, oneness with Spirit. So, prayer is also a tool I offer if the patient desires. – And to be honest, I’ve also done it silently with those who don’t want prayer. The Transition Midwife’s overall intention is to hold the person transitioning in the Light during their entire experience. This is a moving energy, again! This time a conscious infusion of love energy is what I mean by holding someone in the Light.
My shortest time working with a patient has been 3 days. Most seem to be around 2 weeks to a month. Longest was seven months (42 year old man. A real fighter!). The theme of my work is sharing the eternal nature of life and the fact that we are not our bodies. We exist just fine without them. Many times I’ve heard myself tell someone, “You and me, right now, are as dead as dead gets! Now, you may not feel very good right now. You can’t run around the room and your BODY is dying but YOU are not!”

 

Q:  What is the procedure for, “transitioning from this life to the next?”

 

A: When we lift from our bodies because there is no more life in it (the physical body) there is a familiarity in the experience. I venture to say this is because we’ve done it so many times!  I often hear myself speak of the body death experience as one where, when it’s done, or when we’re done with IT, we “pop” out of our bodies!  But we don’t really POP!  It’s more of a floating. Once the physical body dies all we’ve got is our spirit body which now is operating only with its natural spirit tools. Same tools we have while were doing physical incarnations, by the way, but for most of us, while in the human experience we are mesmerized by all things solid. But now, here we are, in the spirit world…on the other side of an actual veil. This veil has been described many ways, by those who’ve actually seen it, touched it, crossed it. I have crossed it a plethora of times but have only see it once. There are others who have seen it regularly. One of the best descriptions I heard is that it is a very sheer – like, ULTRA sheer sheet – like fabric but not solid…and can be translucent and of course, is penetrable.  Again, when I cross I’ve personally don’t see it regularly but the time I did, it was not only shear and like a sheet, it had color like it was made from the fibers of angel hair. I can never feel the veil, only the clear difference of being on the other side of it.

I’ve heard from one disincarnates’ testimony that crossing over is like “walking from one room to the next”.  Another phenomenon comes when the transition is because of a violent death. Like a car crash where the person’s BODY stops at the windshield but the PERSON continues through. Kinda like, ‘whoops! Forgot my body!’ And after hovering for a few and checking out the crash site… Recognizing the car and the fact the body within, used to be theirs – a person can feel very disoriented in suddenly realizing, they are no longer inside that body and in fact… may be dead. If resuscitated and it was meant to be that they continue on in this incarnation, they’ll pop back into that body, go through motions with it until it heals and then if meant to be for them, they remember and be able to tell you all about that wild experience of looking down on the accident. If their body doesn’t survive because of its injuries AND/OR because the persons’ life curriculum means they are to move on from this incarnation, while hovering over the accident site, they could be met by an angel, spirit guide or loved one(s) who has(have) already crossed.  For the transitioned, sadness (if there is any) is tied to their continuing bond with their loved ones here in the physical, who are in deep grief and despair over their departure. There can even be frustration for the now transitioned person, as they are unable to bring peace of mind to them by letting them know they are alive n kickin’ and doing just fine!

 

What happens next? Gosh. There’s a whole assortment of things that could happen or ways the next part plays out and it has, has a lot to do with each individuals’ life curriculum. Will they leave their body and hover in earth realm because of an attachment they have here or a resistance to moving forward? Maybe. Depends. Will moving forward mean they need to stop for a bit in the ‘in between’ and do a ‘life review’? I’ve heard repeatedly, that this happens! I’ve heard it from Near Death survivors. I’ve heard it from disincarnates. And in this review, we are actually RE-EXPERIENCING EMOTION!  But here’s the kicker, it’s not just emotions that you had in different situations throughout your life. It’s the emotions we lead other people to have! – That can be good…and bad, depending on the choices you’ve made in your interactions! I suppose this part could feel a little purgatory-ish! Good news is, it happens in a relative ‘flash’! Phew!

 

I’ve learned (from disincarnates and near death survivors) of an instant feeling and knowingness of their continuing ALIVENESS and how much more easily it is now to connect with and understand (effortlessly) ones’ self as an ‘Eternal Spirit Being’ yet understanding that this is nothing new. They are now the same spirit being they were when they were gallivanting around Earth living as Marge the nurse in Minot North Dakota or Walter the orange grove guy Yettum California. Again, what happens next is …very individual. And there does seem to be steps. Entering an incarnation is much faster than exiting one. It’s the process of exiting one that readies us to enter another! When we’re ready – ZOOM! But where will we go next?!  Will it be another physical lifetime?! – Or an incarnation at a totally different vibration – maybe a non-physical incarnation in a different dimension? I’ll stop here on this before I accidentally write another book!

 

Q: When did you realize you were a clairvoyant?

 

A: I realized it, long after I experienced it! The experiences may have started when I was younger but it wasn’t until I was around 10 years old when I started….seeing stuff and…going places!! Involuntary cross dimensional astral projection. And even then, I didn’t realize I was clairvoyant! Didn’t even know the word!! I was clairsentient, too. Didn’t know that either!! This is back in the day when I had never heard the words astral projection. I astral projected many times as a kid and would only realize what happened when I’d suddenly return to my body standing out field playing …baseball or whatever I was doing. Terrifying! And I never told ANYONE this was happening. At most, I asked a friend in my presence, “hey, did I just look really weird just now?” And they’d say “no”! I’d be stunned. It felt liked been gone for 30 minutes! But actually the travel probably took a split second.  I remember the day I prayed for this to stop. And so it was and for quite a while. I stopped astral projecting especially. I seriously didn’t get that, then! Lol! The rest was gentler. Premonitions were plentiful but never startling. I didn’t know that I was experiencing anything unusual.  And I think The Universe let me ease into it by not introducing my clairaudience when I was really young. Clairaudience began about 20 years ago….

 

So it was gradual. I started to realize my gifts slowly.. Clairvoyance. Clairsentience. Clairaudience. Most of this blossoming in my late 20s and 30s! After a while I realized I am a natural medium. I then learned I am also a channel. I’d say these realizations each unfolded as a layer (each layer, an ability and gift), one at a time, over a couple of decades. And… the realizations haven’t stopped…

 

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Q: How did you go about setting up your business Valet of the Dolls?

 

A: Oh THAT!
Dude… that was a total accident! (There’s no such thing as an ‘accident’).  My 20 year radio career ended. While trying to get my next radio gig, I took on a little job with a local female valet company because I thought it was just the coolest thing I’d ever heard of! All female valets?! What?! The owner of that company wanted to sell. No one was biting at the price she was asking so, charmed with the business concept, I offered to run the company for her, “$10 an hour. Teach me how to do it. If I like it and if I’m good at it, I’ll buy it from you!”

After 3 months working for her as a valet, I was suddenly Operations Manager. Exhausted with the business, she trained me for 2 weeks and then, basically, disappeared!  I held the position of Op. Mgr. for 19 months. During that time grew her company from 35 valets to more than 100 enabling the company to grow from 200+ parties per year to more than 400. She’d never experienced that kind of profit! Long story short, she rejected all FIVE of my offers and then… she fired me! Lol!

 

Thing is, there was never a non-compete promise between us so, with a new skill that I absolutely LOVED and a small army of 20 experienced valets who were also my friends pushing me forward, I prayed for a great name and brainstormed for three days. ‘Valet Of The Dolls’ was what I got. The name itself was so intensely – ridiculously – amazing I KNEW without QUESTION I was supposed to move forward.

Our doors opened on 03/03/03!  It was a truly hefty process.  There’s A LOT to this business. The work is illusive but oh so real!! I basically set the company up single handedly but am completely clear I had (have) a team of guides who lead me through the process!

 

Q: What is your strangest work story?
A: Strange? Or Scary?!  In the strange category – Valet Of The Dolls does roughly 600 private events per year. An easy 50% of our clientele is ‘Hollywood’.  People who can afford to do things like, parade an elephant down the beach as part of a birthday party for an 8 year old, a helicopter landing on the property as part of a mitzvah! Oh! A super strange one was a wedding we did on a Tuesday, midday, and the father of the bride (who arranged our service) wanted the valets to dress as a variety of super heroes! The valets dressed this way did NOT correlate with any theme happening with the rest of the wedding! Truly a weird thing! But hey- if the customer wants super heroes – that’s what they get!

As a Minister: the strangest story has to be the house clearing I did when a disincarnate physically attacked me. That…was NOT cool! Didn’t hurt, though!!! His contact felt like a very, very light electrical current! Strange, for sure!

 

Q: What does a house blessing entail?
A: First there is an assessment by the Light Worker to determine if there are any energies that need to be removed before beginning. Clearings are not only to evict spirits but the imprints left behind by ‘emotional energy’. That debris is actually contagious so needs to be cleared – or HEALED. A clearing is REALLY a ‘healing’.  Even if the intention is only to do a house BLESSING and not a clearing – there is still a little clearing/healing to do. Kind of like dusting and vacuuming. It’s not a big dramatic deal but needs to be done! (Regularly!)  The occupants are asked to do some actual housekeeping prior to the ceremony. Open windows and let fresh air in. The one conducting the ceremony will also have asked the occupants if there are any intentions they would like to set for the home and/or themselves while they live in the home. These elements are incorporated into the ceremony.

The ceremony uses aroma therapy and different stones are placed strategically. The types of stones are dependent upon each person/home/situation. There are sounds, voice, singing bowls, bells or other tools can be used to enhance the movement of energy. My effort is always to call Spirit into the dwelling and may also beckon the assistance of certain guides and Archangels to assist in the process of anointing, purifying energetically, the building and the aforementioned intentions of those who live (or work) there. The blessing comes with gratitude …it is done. And so it is. The blessing portion of a House blessing ceremony actually seals the healing and empowers all intentions and results of love infused.

 

Q:  What made you leave broadcasting?
A: Spirit did it.

I loved radio so much, I would have done it FOREVER! How was I supposed to know there could possibly be anything more exciting and wonderful than what I was doing?!
Seriously. The Universe/Creator/Source of all Life – whatever you wanna call it – had TRIED to tell me numerous times to open my mind and branch out into the world. But I was like, “huh? No way! I don’t care that I don’t make enough money and work too many hours I LOVE LOVE LOVE what I do!” I did thoroughly love radio! Like, to the bone! I loved my listeners. I was one of the only drive time radio announcers who actually answered the request line! I was IN LOVE with my job. So I said, “no thanks Universe, I’ll just stay here”.  To that, the Universe had to take desperate measures.

My radio station was sold! I’d survived that before only thing is, this time, the format would be Spanish. I don’t speak Spanish! Not even a little bit! I studied French for three years and don’t even speak THAT! So after an amazing 20 year run, my daily life on the radio was over. I didn’t know it until my life in the valet business gave me new vision! At that point I stopped looking for more radio work!

Q: How do you, “consciously uncouple” someone?

 

A: Decoupling. Uncoupling. Tomato. Tomahto! I refer to it as Conscious Decoupling.  It started for me as a ‘CEREMONY’. And in fact, in 2012 when starting Bless & Clear one of the many sacred ceremonies we immediately made available was the ‘Divorce Ceremony’. Over time I realized, this type of ceremony needed to be available to people who were not married but are ending their romance. So, the term became a Conscious Decoupling Ceremony! The ceremony is really the icing on the cake – the true conscious decoupling starts prior to the ceremony. The processing is where one gets to be conscious.
Conscious decoupling doesn’t pretend there is no pain to a romantic break up. On the contrary, I advise people that the emotions they experience during the break up are important and are the yellow brick road to the places within that are in need of healing. These wounded places most likely existed long before you met the person you’re breaking up with. Its accumulated baggage, stuffed for so long and now by way of this break up, is bubbling to the surface; unresolved issues – hurt from misperceptions from a faulty belief system that may be fueling your pain and influencing the outcome of our life experiences! So ultimately, conscious decoupling is a process where your intention is to get back to heal – get clear – and grow into joy and self-empowerment as you can then more easily go about to create whatever it is you like!

 

So, as you can see, the real work comes prior to the ceremony. Many people have already done that work and come to me just for the ceremony. Others need guidance with that processing so that they are READY for the ceremony! Otherwise… it would be like getting to the part of your wedding where you’re supposed to say “I Do” but…you’re not actually sure yet!
In this ceremony the couple celebrates their relationship; what it was, what it is and genuinely wishes the best for each other as they go forward now, individually. There’s a moment where each shares why they fell in love in the first place, how they’ve grown as a result of the relationship. Judgements have been released PRIOR to the ceremony (in processing!). So it is easy to do the part of the ceremony where each basks in forgiveness – especially SELF forgiveness. They may have prepared vows for each other and they can read those.  Ultimately, the rite of passage blesses each of them as well as the transformation of their relationship because it hasn’t ended. It has only changed.

For those who want this but haven’t reached place where they can comfortably and eagerly cover all the parts of this loving ceremony, I offer short series of coaching sessions to assist in the processing necessary to clear and rise to a place of authentic joy, again. Once in that place, not only have you done the work to consciously decouple, you are now in a place where you can consciously create your life and include in it, the bliss you ultimately want!

Please note; Eliza’s interviews are done by email. All answers are unedited and come right from the lovely fingertips of her subjects.

An Interview With Motivational Speaker Jimmylee Velez

 

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Jimmylee Velez is a motivational speaker; here is a link to his website:

 

http://jimmyleevelez.com/
Q:  What made you interested in motivational speaking?

 

A: Back in 2006 I was introduced to the personal development industry. I studied the arena, applied what I was learning and within weeks, my life completely changed. From there, I wanted to share my knowledge and experience with my new found passion. I truly believe this is my calling in life and am currently living out my destiny.

 

Q:  What set you apart from other motivational speakers?

 

A: We ALL have our individual stories and mine is as unique as they come. I did not go to school for motivation, entrepreneurship or even business. I have a bachelor’s of science in the concentration of health information management. I truly believe the personal development industry chose me. It simply resonated with me and truly pulled out my true ability to communicate with people. My message is the raw truth wrapped in encouragement and sprinkled with love to give my audience a POWERFUL message.

 

Q:  What qualifications do you possess for your job?

 

A: I posses the unique ability to tap into the hearts of others and inject a message of hope. These messages can transform your life into a more refined better version of yourself. I truly want to help and possess an undying passion to assist people overcome life’s obstacles. My intentions are derived from my heart and the love naturally guides me.

 

Q:  I’m a customer service representative, what kind of day job do you have and how does it influence your motivational speaking?

 

A: I work for a local hospital. That being said, EVERYTHING influences my motivational speaking.  I do believe life is what we make of it regardless of our surroundings. I am inspired by all kinds of things which allows my message to be so versatile. I am around a ton of CARING people and it definitely rubs off on my message.

 

Q:  What is your core philosophy?

 

A: I believe we have a duty to live out our life calling. We all possess different skills and abilities that are needed in the world. We must recognize these strengths, sharpen them and utilize them DAILY. We all play an important role in the world and it is critical the world receives our best. To live a life of excellence and become the BEST version of ourselves is a DAILY mission.

 

Q:  What is the difference between thinking positively and being delusional?

 

A: This depends on who you ask as we ALL have our very own definition of each. It’s an individual kind of thing. What I think is “positive”, you may think is “delusional”. Neither of which are correct as each come from different frequency levels of thinking. Your misunderstanding of my “positive thinking” does not make it “delusional”, it’s simply on another level. People thought Roger Bannister was “delusional” in thinking he could run a mile in under four minutes, but in 1954 he proved them wrong. Non-believer’s thought it was “delusional” to put a man on the moon, but the Apollo 11 astronauts proved them wrong. The examples of “positive” thinking and “delusional” are endless and are simply separated by perspective.

 

Q:  What have you done to promote your book?

 

A: Currently, I am in the process of wrapping up my book which is to be released in December. The book is a follow-up project to the album, The Motivation Files, “Motivation To Master Your Day”. It truly is the ULTIMATE combination of motivation and music. The Motivation Files  (Album) charted 5 days in a row on iTunes (http://TheMotivationFiles.com) and has been played on several radio shows. On my site,http://JimmyleeVelez.com you will see a section where myself and The Motivation Files have been featured in various forms of media; all of which have promoted my projects. I have guest blogged and also been featured on several podcasts promoting The Motivation Files. My passion for The Motivation Files shines through in my daily social media posts and weekly blogs at http://WisdomMiners.com

 

Q:  What is the key to giving a good motivational speech?

 

A: The key is preparation. Knowing who your audience is, what problems you are solving for them and what point you are trying to drive while maintaining a controlled excitement level packed with enthusiasm and wisdom.

 

Q:  What are some specific examples of how your philosophy has helped people?

 

A: The philosophy I use and promote is not my own as it has been derived from the years of research and experience in the field. That being said, one of my favorite examples come from two guys in the music industry. One guy listened to The Motivation Files and my movement, and instantly regained faith in his music career. He was motivated to go after his dreams and is now in the process of recording a second album. The second fellow had a direct conversation with me about my projects and listened to The Motivation Files. He was so motivated and compelled to take action on his dreams that within 24 hours he had a new track recorded and dreams reignited.

 

Q:  I think if you are a pessimist you can’t be disappointed, only pleasantly surprised, what do you think?

 

A: I think if being a pessimist works for you, than stick with it. We all have our own unique way of navigating our way through life. The Motivation Files is simply a tool and you can use it as you see necessary in your life. My overall goal is to motivate you to become the best version of yourself regardless if you are a pessimist or optimist.

Please note; Eliza’s interviews are done by email. All answers are unedited and come right from the lovely fingertips of her subjects:)

 

An Interview With Clinical Counselor Charlene Pyskoty

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Charlene Pyskoty is a licensed professional clinical counselor in Albuquerque, New Mexico; here is a link to her website:

https://charlenelpcc.wordpress.com/

 

Q: What made you interested in becoming a therapist?

A: My dad was a Chicago cop. He was a bad-ass dude, and also one of the most spiritual people I’ve ever known. He taught me how to meditate when I was 5 years old. He was very interested in psychology, and we would talk about psychology, spirituality, and philosophy. I became interested in the human condition at an early age. I think my father wanted to teach me as much as he could, as fast as he could. He died suddenly and unexpectedly when I was 14 years old.

My life took a few twists and turns – I earned a Master’s degree in Sociology and then one in Public Health before I got my Counseling degree – but I always knew that I would become a therapist.

Along the way, I had careers in research (both academic and market research); writing and editing; and working in marketing and advertising. With a passion (and skill set) for exploration, data gathering, hypothesis testing, a love for the English language, and a passion for helping people succeed in ways that make them more of who they are meant to be, becoming a therapist was the perfect career choice.

There is a saying that if you love what you do, you will never work a day in your life. I feel that way about my life and my career – truly blessed. I love the time I spend with my clients (it’s the paperwork and dealing with insurance companies that is the “work” part of my job).

Q: What are some of the requirements of obtaining an LPCC?

A: To become a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor, I first earned a Bachelor’s degree (Psychology) and then a Master’s degree in Counseling from an accredited Counselor Education program. This is basically a two-year, full-time program which includes one year of an (unpaid) internship. I did my internship at a community mental health agency in Chicago, which was a great experience! I then had to pass the first national exam to receive my first level of licensure.

To obtain my second (and final) level of licensure – which allows me to practice independently – I had to work under supervision for two more years and then pass the National Mental Health Counselor Examination which is administered by the National Board of Certified Counselors.

I keep my license current by taking 40 credit hours of continuing education every two years. Of course, each step in the licensing process requires paying fees.

In addition to the Master’s in Counseling program, I went on to earn a certification in Jungian Psychotherapy (through a two-year clinical training program) at the C.G. Jung Institute in Chicago.

Q: What is your therapeutic process?

A: Let me start out by saying that it seems like the most important things I’ve learned about doing therapy, I learned from working with my horses.

My therapeutic process is to get to know my client and then develop a “treatment plan,” in which the client and I work together to articulate the problems, goals, and the strengths and resources of the client to help reach those goals. Then we use whatever comes up as material to work toward the goals.

While I am good at deeply listening to what a person is trying to communicate, I am also a talker. I don’t just nod my head and say, “Uh-huh,” and “Time’s up.” Because of my research background, I am always exploring with the client and asking questions. I also use humor in my sessions, which one of my clients pointed out as “knowing laughter” – finding the lightness in our shared human condition.

My overall philosophy of working with people is also how I work with horses. I had fostered a little mare from the local horse rescue. Because of some past trauma she had suffered, which left her with an injured ankle, she was a tough case; no one could get near her. My intention was to socialize her and make her people-friendly enough to be a good adoption prospect.

I worked with her very slowly and gently, and she responded by becoming trusting of people. One day I asked a cowboy friend of mine what he thought really made the difference for her. He summed it up in a way that just brought tears to my eyes. He said, “You never saw her as a problem to be fixed. You only cared about her and loved her, and that’s what made the difference.”

I think that is the essence of my therapeutic process. I don’t see people as problems to be fixed. I just care deeply about them and use whatever resources I have, in terms of my knowledge, skills, and compassionate understanding of how hard we humans struggle sometimes, to help them get to where they want to go in their lives.

Q: You have a WordPress site that contains some of your poetry. How does writing poetry help you in your work?

A: I once asked a very wise mentor (and therapist whom I respect deeply) for the single-most important thing to do to become a really great therapist. He said: “Work your process.” Writing poetry – or anything of a self-reflective nature – helps me dig deep and work my own process. Writing helps me get down below the surface details and petty annoyances of my life to, what I call, “the thing under the thing.” The thing under the thing is the deep wound or insecurity that has been triggered by some external event. By digging deep and working my process in this way, I not only develop a greater capacity for compassion and forgiveness of myself, but also for everyone around me.

Life can be hard, and we all deal with so much pain and struggle sometimes. Writing it out helps me get down to the place where all of humanity is connected, not only in the pain and struggle, but even more so in the strength and resilience we have to grow, learn, and move on, albeit with layers of scar tissue around our hearts and souls.

Q: What are some of the more challenging issues you have faced as a therapist?

A: I work with approximately ages 12 and up. My most challenging cases are perhaps teens who are in a dysfunctional family system, who are not getting their emotional needs met, and they are struggling – with school, with peers, and, of course, their own emotions. These kids are so powerless in their family system that they do whatever they can to feel some sense of control in their own lives. Often, this takes the form of some sort of self-destructive behavior (eg., cutting themselves, eating disorders, drugs, or engaging in any number of risky behaviors).

My job is to help these kids develop healthy and effective coping strategies. It is also to help them see their families more realistically and to grieve the emotional support they are unable to get. In many of these families, the parents are incapable of providing for the kids’ emotional needs and making them feel loved and valued. It is my job to help the kids learn to do that for themselves, and to pick healthy people who will support and cherish them in their future relationships.

It sounds like a lot of work, but fortunately, these kids tend to be really smart, sensitive, and insightful. They are hard workers who can see that their parents have problems but can also see that the way out is to take care of themselves and improve their own lives.

As an aside, I really like working with kids who cut themselves. They are a bright bunch and respond well to therapy. One “intervention” that I’ve come up with is to give cutters a golf ball. So many of the suggestions for cutters are soft – take a bubble bath, drink a cup of herbal tea. These are some pretty hard-core kids who use pain to ground themselves. Squeezing or stepping on a golf ball provides a good kind of pain. They can control it, it doesn’t hurt them, and there may even be some acupressure benefits. (By the way, I don’t golf, so I rely on the generosity of my friends to supply me with their used golf balls!)

Q: To what theories in therapy do you ascribe?

A: I take a real mind-body approach. While I am well-grounded in psychological theory and therapeutic best practices, I also draw heavily from the fields of meditation, body-centered therapies and practices (eg., yoga, tai chi), and neuroendocrinology. Lately I have been loving the work of Peter Levine, who talks about processing trauma through the body.

While my standard therapy toolkit consists of a lot of CBT (cognitive-behavioral therapy) and solution-focused, strength-based techniques, I leave the door wide open to pull in anything that works. Sometimes that might be creative therapies (using art, music, dance, etc.). Sometimes I recommend an evaluation for medications – sometimes a person is just dealt a bad set of brain chemicals, and since the brain is an organ in the body (which sometimes doesn’t function optimally), a medical assessment may be in order.

At the risk of being called a therapy heretic, I don’t think all problems are psychological problems. We are physical, intellectual, emotional, and spiritual beings. We have to make sure that all aspects are balanced and in line with who we truly are.

Finally, although I love Jungian psychology, I don’t use it with every client.  I am not dogmatic about it. In fact, I am more along the lines of Carl Jung himself, who said, “I am glad that I am Jung, and not a Jungian.”

Q: What is your opinion of reality shows that focus on psychological disorders?

A: I must admit, I don’t watch a lot of television, and I especially eschew shows with a lot of “drama.” Because I am a therapist, I listen to people’s stories all day, not for the drama but with a compassionate, listening heart. I don’t find reality shows about psychological disorders entertaining.

That said, General Hospital and The Bachelor are my brain candy; I’m addicted to them. I would love to be the therapist for The Bachelor!

While I have limited familiarity with reality shows, I can say that therapy is a process of “experimentation.” I give a lot of homework to my clients so that they can experiment with change between sessions. We then review – using a strengths-based, solution-focused orientation – what worked, what didn’t, and why. By working with a client’s natural strengths, we effect lasting change. I don’t believe that is typically possible in a one-hour television show.

Q: Have you noticed a difference in the types of things people in a big city are treated for versus the types of things that bring them to therapy in a rural area?

A: Hmmmm, interesting question. There are definitely more similarities than differences between people. The majority of people seek help for depression, anxiety, and relationship issues.

One major difference that I have noticed is that I see more death-related cases in New Mexico than I did in Chicago. Whether accidental or intentional (by suicide or murder), I see more people dealing with grief and loss of a loved one. I also work with men and women who have spent time in the military and who have been exposed to death and suffering that most of us can’t even imagine.

Here in NM, I see a lot more young people than in Chicago. Most of my clients are in their early 30s or younger. One rather curious difference I’ve noticed: In Chicago, it was usually the woman who called to set up marital therapy; here it is usually the man!

One aspect of rural therapy that I’d like to highlight is that the therapies are more varied and are able to incorporate more of the environment. Equine therapy (working with horses) is a ready option out here. There are wilderness adventures and vision quests. Therapists use aspects of the native culture to facilitate healing. I think it’s wonderful to be able to draw upon the land and the rich history as a part of the treatment plan.

Finally, due to the necessity of great distance and few health providers, telemedicine is being seriously researched and utilized here. “Distance counseling,” using internet-based technology, is a direction in which therapy going. It needs rigorous research to determine its effectiveness and ethical/legal implications.

Q: What are some theories in therapy that you do not agree with?

A: I don’t agree with any theory that thinks it’s the only, right, or best approach! I think therapy is like the story of the three blind men and the elephant. Each man has his hand on a piece of the elephant – and each man is right. Depending upon which part you have your hand on, the elephant feels like a big hose, a tree trunk, or a whip. Everyone is partially right, but without the larger perspective, everyone is also wrong. I would not adhere to any one theory to the exclusion of others.

Q: If you could be treated by Freud or Jung, who would you pick and why?

A: Hmmmmm….perhaps the more interesting question would be which one would I rather treat!

While I think it would be fascinating to lie on the couch and be analyzed by Freud, the father of my profession, I would have to pick Carl Jung. First off, he was one jazzy guy! He was multi-faceted in his thinking and doing – totally open to new experiences. I would love to be able to play thought games with him – exploring my dreams and projections for hidden symbolic meanings, archetypes, and hints toward the healing of my deepest wounds.

Jung didn’t pathologize a person or see them as a diagnosis, but rather, he looked at what was calling out in the person to be expressed and integrated into their personality. He talked about the Shadow, which is not something to be driven deeper into hiding, but brought out into the light and worked with as a strength. He was all about balance and becoming more of who we are meant to be.

Finally, I think there is no better way of understanding the therapist-client relationship than by being a client oneself. I would love to be in therapy with this master, to know how it feels and to learn what I can do to be a really great therapist myself.

Please note; Eliza’s interviews are done by email. All answers are unedited and come right from the lovely fingertips of her subjects:)

An Interview With Former Homicide Detective And Author Dan Willis

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Dan Willis is a former homicide detective who specializes in wellness training to first responders. He is also the author of the book Bulletproof Spirit: The First Responders Essential Resource for Protecting and Healing Mind and Heart; here is a link to his website:  http://www.firstresponderwellness.com/

Q: What is Bulletproof Spirit about?

A: “Bulletproof Spirit: The First Responders Essential Resource for Protecting and Healing Mind and Heart” is an emotional survival guidebook—a wellness resource for police officers, fire personnel, the military, paramedics, nurses, hospital trauma workers, as well as their spouses and loved ones. It provides, for the first time, over 40 proactive wellness strategies and emotional survival methods that work to protect, heal and nurture the spirit of those who serve—so they will no longer suffer from all of the negative aspects of their profession. The book provides first responders with a message of hope, and a path toward wellness.

Q: What made you decide to write a book?

 

A: I have been a police officer, now a captain, for nearly 26 years and not only have I suffered from the terrible things I have experienced, but I have witnessed numerous colleagues suffer from PTSD, depression, substance abuse, and many other physical and emotional ailments that have all been brought on and aggravated by what we experience at work. There really isn’t any effective training or information available that addresses how a first responder can proactively work to insulate themselves and protect, heal, and nurture their spirit so they will not only survive, but thrive throughout their careers.

 

Suicide is the number one cause of death for first responders. Every year nearly 200 officers take their own life. 21 military veterans and 1 active duty soldier kill themselves every day. 120,000 police officers go to work every day suffering with PTSD. There is a tremendous need to provide emotional survival information and training for all these heroes who sacrifice a part of themselves to protect and give life to others.

 

An officer with a damaged spirit is not only susceptible toward self-destructive behaviors, but they are also unable to provide the most effective and professional police services for the community, which needs and demands them to be at their very best. Bulletproof Spirit provides the training, resources, and essential information to keep them well.

 

Q: What kind of research did you do?

 

A: The genesis for the book began in 2010 when I attended the FBI National Academy in Quantico, Virginia. I took a course regarding emotional survival taught by a supervising special agent of the Behavioral Science Unit. Since then I have read numerous books on the subject—though none of them really offered effective wellness methods that could be used as a proactive strategy toward emotional survival. Much of the literature that was available primarily dealt with all the reasons why first responders suffer from their work.

 

I’ve consulted with several experts in the field, such as Nancy Bohl-Penrod, Ph.D., of the Counseling Team International, and have instructed with her. In addition, I have nearly 26 years of police experience, work on our peer support team, and have established and coordinated my agency’s Wellness Program. I continue to travel and teach first responders regarding emotional survival strategies.

 

Q: What are some of the professional experiences you drew from for the book?

 

A: Most of my career has been as a detective investigating murders, child abuse, and crimes of violence. I have also been a SWAT Commander and a member of our peer support team. I worked a child molest case where the suspect had over 700 photos of infants and small children being sexually assaulted; I have crawled on my hands and knees inside a body bag in order to collect maggots so that an entomologist could estimate the time of death. I have had my police car rear window shot out, I’ve chased attempted murder and armed robbery suspects at 120 mph and caught them; I’ve worked cold case murders, one taking me five years to solve.

 

I worked a case where a woman was attacked inside her home and stabbed 76 times, until the knife blade broke off in her skull. And I have witnessed numerous autopsies where I not only collect evidence from the dead body, but have gotten covered in skull dust as the Medical Examiner used a high powered saw to cut through the victim’s skull to remove the brain.

 

Every time I suffered with my victims, each case of senseless violence, every evil act that devastated so many lives—all became very toxic and poisonous to my spirit. Through many years of trial and error, I discovered what actually worked to breathe life back into my spirit.

 

Q: What are some of the major principles you teach in your wellness training?

 

A: The most important principle to realize, is that if we do not do anything proactive toward our own emotional survival, then we will inevitably suffer from the inherent negative aspects of our profession. First responders must also learn to become much more self-aware to understand how the job has changed them—their health and wellness, their relationships, their view of others, and the quality of their lives. When first responders neglect the importance and wellness of their spirit, then they are in danger of turning into someone their loved ones no longer recognize.

 

I describe several warnings signs that indicate that your spirit is suffering and not constructively processing stress or trauma. I also detail how first responders can overcome the daily hypervigilance roller coaster, how to prepare for and mitigate the effects of trauma, and numerous ways that our loved ones can become our most critical life-line of support.

 

It is crucial for first responder agencies to develop an effective peer support team, a wellness program, effective use of chaplain services, and ongoing proactive wellness and emotional survival training for the good of the officers, the agency, and the community.

 

Q: What case that you had as a homicide detective was the hardest for you to deal with emotionally?

 

A: The worst was a case where a middle-aged man was taken about 120 miles away from my city and murdered—and had his head and hands cut off. We never did find the victim’s head or hands and the body was dumped in an alley. We had no cause of death, no murder weapon, no murder scene (he was killed and cut up in another unknown location), no witnesses to the murder, no confessions, no DNA, no fingerprints, and no physical evidence of any kind of the suspects. I spent five years immersing myself in a world of pimps, prostitutes, violent gang members, and drug dealers. I received death threats from the suspects, and was being followed by one of their accomplices.

 

I became obsessed with working this case, while at the same time needing to work all my other cases that kept coming in. I got very little sleep, had difficulty in my marriage, and became very paranoid. However, after 5 years, 2 Crip gang members were convicted of first degree murder.

 

Q: What do you believe causes first responders to have suicidal tendencies?

 

A: Many officers suffer from PTSD without knowing that they have it. They suffer extreme panic attacks, horrible nightmares, debilitating stress, crippling intrusive mental images, and eventually they can begin to feel hopeless as the quality of their lives continues to disintegrate.

 

Officers also feel a great sense of helplessness. Often we are unable to save a child, stop someone’s suffering, or arrest a violent suspect before he is able to victimize again. This sense of helplessness can also lead to guilt feelings, where the officers continually second-guess their actions—thinking there could have been more they could do.

 

Additionally, there still is a sense that seeking help is a sign of weakness. What we all must realize, is that PTSD is not a weakness. It is not about what’s wrong with you; it’s about what happened to you. It is actually an injury to the brain’s ability to process a traumatic event. There are effective treatments available that can help heal the brain’s processing ability so that memories of the event are no longer crippling.

 

Q: What are some of the warning signs family members should look for?

 

A: There are several warning sings which show a first responder’s spirit is suffering:

  1. Isolation: First responders tend to come home and isolate themselves, so that they can unwind and get ready for the next shift. They become disengaged and indifferent. This creates distance and frustration in relationships.
  2. Anger: The first responder will tend to become increasingly angry at things that never used to bother them. Family members walk on egg shells fearing another angry outburst that they don’t understand.
  3. Sleep problems: 40% of first responders have serious sleeping disorders, and only get about 4-5 hours each night—when 8-9 hours are needed for our emotional, physical, and mental well-being.
  4. Depression: Left unattended, the negative aspects of our jobs can leave us feeling not only exhausted all the time, but depressed, moody, and agitated.
  5. Drinking as a perceived need: First responders have twice the rate of alcoholism as the general population. Drinking as a need in order to relax, fall asleep, or to forget, is a significant warning sign that your spirit has not been processing stress and trauma.
  6. Emotionally dead: As a way to cope with being able to do our job while in the midst of heartache and helplessness, first responders develop the natural reaction of shutting down emotional feelings. Over time this tends to make them unable to feel—being emotionally dead inside. This, of course, becomes devastating to personal relationships.

 

It is essential to treat, protect, and train all components that make us human, our mind, body, and especially our spirit. It is our spirit that is so critically important. It is our spirit that enables us to cope with stress, overcome trauma, and serve with compassion. Our spirit is the reservoir of our motivation to be committed to public service and helping others, to be inspired, and to be hopeful. Our spirit is the foundation for our mental, emotional, and physical health. We neglect our spirit at the expense of our own well-being.

 

Q: What do you think draws a person to a career in law enforcement in the first place?

 

A: Nearly all of us were driven to become a first responder because of our compassionate spirit to want to stand up to evil and to protect others from suffering. First responders dedicate their lives to protect and give life to others. This should give us great satisfaction and be life affirming—yet too often our service for others results in our spirits suffering.

 

I am constantly amazed and inspired by the level of selfless service, sacrifice, commitment, and dedication of those who work at my side. I only wish the general public realized how much we give of ourselves in order to protect and serve them. It is absolutely the best job in the world.

 

Q: What is the most misunderstood thing about detective work?

A: Probably the most misunderstood thing about police work in general is that we are human; we suffer, fear, and bleed like everyone else. Yet we often look past our own needs in order to help those who need us. Every one of my colleagues would willingly sacrifice their life if it meant they could save another. The heart and spirit of those who serve in the face of evil and violence makes them all heroes. Yet we have families too. Each day when we say good-bye to our baby or kiss our spouse as we leave, we know we may never see them again. We care about protecting others more than our own welfare.

 

 

 

 

Please note; Eliza’s interviews are done by email. All answers are unedited and come right from the lovely fingertips of her subjects:)