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Life Lessons are not Always Appreciated

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It would appear that symbols of triumph over adversity are sadly lost on some people, even when said symbols are quite literally flourishing right in front of them.

 

I’m lucky in that the housing development I live in is built on the edge of what was once a churchyard. The church is long gone, but the grounds remain, and so what is now a lovely little park actually sits on my doorstep. It features a large lawn, a war memorial, several trees, squirrels galore, park benches and even a picnic table. It also often contains people walking their dogs or just chilling out in the space.

 

It’s certainly a beautiful view from my living room windows and one that I never fail to appreciate.

 

Sadly, in the four years that I’ve lived here several trees have been lost to the storms, felled by ferocious winds that are now a constant feature of the British weather.

 

One such tree was literally split in two by a particular violent episode about two years back. One half of it fell to the floor and one half remained. However, the remnants of its once proud boughs and trunk were, for safety’s sake, quickly chain sawed down to a mere stump that stood a little over waist height.

 

Undaunted by the spate of adversity it had faced, the tree stump decided to carry on regardless. The following spring, tiny shoots poked their way out from the reduced trunk and quickly grew into small branches. Each branch sprouted buds that blossomed and became leaves. For two whole summers, it wore those branches and leaves like a verdant, pagan crown. You can see the results in the picture at the top of this post.

 

I loved that tree stump; it was like a glorious “fuck you” and “bring it on!” to the challenges that life can chuck your way.

 

Sadly, as of today, that stump is no more. Bristol City Council in its infinite wisdom, or lack thereof, decided to butcher it, to take a chainsaw to that glorious symbol of fortitude and reduce it down to a mere plinth.

 

It will neither bud nor blossom again.

 

If asked for a comment, I’m sure some official at the council would say something bland and officious about health and safety.

 

You can survive any predicament in life, except for the things that kill you, and while that tree survived the storms, it could not survive officialdom.

 

Goodbye valiant little tree stump, I will always value the life lessons you taught me even if Bristol City Council will not.

Stress: It’s out of control

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Stress is a big problem the world over but, here in the UK, we seem all seem to be that little bit extra stressed, and in ways that have nothing to do with Brexit. Read more

Think of a Therapist as a Mechanic for your Mind

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Some people are a little put off by psychotherapy, and so approach it with caution, while others are too scared to go for therapy at all, even though they know they need it. There’s still a lot of stigma attached to mental health issues, but therapy need not be such a scary thing. As the self-development guru, Wayne Dyer, once famously said, “when you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.” Read more

Hypnotherapy: Here to Help you Shed those Pounds

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Hypnotherapy is an altered state of consciousness, very similar to daydreaming, or losing yourself in a really good book. In this trance-like state, your unconscious mind becomes very susceptible to positive suggestion, especially when those suggestions are tied to a goal you already know you want to achieve. When it comes to weight loss, whether you goal is to shed a few pounds or a few stone, you’ll be amazed at what a good hypnotherapist can help you with. Read more

Mental Health: It’s all about the balance

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Everything exists in a state of balance, or homeostasis; that never ending attempt to find an equilibrium, that place where opposing forces and influences are balanced, where a sense of calm is achieved and where everything can perform at its best. This is especially true of physiological processes, but it is also true of psychological processes. But, what happens when that balance is sent out of kilter?  Read more

Take the Stress out of Christmas

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Depending upon your point of view then, either sadly or happily, it’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas. But, what does Christmas mean to you? For many it just means stress. What was once a celebration of the winter solstice, then an annual festival commemorating the birth of Jesus Christ and is now, for all intents and purposes, simply an invitation to boost the economy as much as you can, has become a very stressful experience indeed. But, how can you mitigate that stress? Read more

Therapy: Physical Fitness for your Mind

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Despite the best efforts of the media and mental health professionals there is still, sadly, as stigma surrounding mental health. Many people regard psychotherapy and counselling sessions with fear and trepidation. But, there is a different view you can take. As the old adage says, “when you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.” Time then, to think of a therapist as nothing more than a fitness instructor for your mind. Read more

Brand New Bristol Based Therapist

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Well, fairly new; well, sort of new. New-ish; okay, I moved here from London in January 2016 but, due to other work commitments, it’s taken me this long to sort a private practice out. However, I am a psychotherapist and I’ve been working as one since 2004. Read more