As Toni Collette (actress, singer, songwriter) says, “The better you know yourself, the better your relationship with the rest of the world.”
Knowing ourselves involves awareness, affirmation and appreciation of our thoughts, feelings and our bodies. Physical health and emotional health are so closely intertwined in “the mind-body connection”. Our chemistry and biology impact our mood and emotions, as well as thoughts and beliefs. All of these factors combine to play a major role in influencing our stress, physical health and level of connection with ourselves and others.
We will explore our neurobiology and how we are wired to subconsciously ask “Am I safe?” Safety is much more than the absence of threat – it is more about the protection of connection. We will take a look at our optimal state where we regulate and integrate our neurobiology, thoughts and emotions called the Window of Tolerance (Dr Dan Siegel).
We will delve into the Polyvagal Theory (Dr Stephen Porges) which is a way of understanding the neurobiology of human behaviour by examining how the 3 states of our autonomic nervous system shift according to how we see the world. To change our behaviour we must change our nervous system. Understanding our autonomic responses empowers our choices for self-care and increases connection with ourselves and others. Neuroscience opens the door to self-compassion and increased compassion for others.
Using tools such as anchors, glimmers and glows we will learn how to create new neuronal pathways harnessing the power of neuroplasticity to enable us to self-regulate, enjoy coregulation and know ourselves and others deeply.
As Dr Bessel Van Der Kolk says, “ Being able to feel safe with other people is probably the single most important aspect of mental health; safe connections are fundamental to meaningful and satisfying lives.”
Lorraine Fellows is a trustee of Potential Plus UK. She has been married to Tim for 30 years and has 5 children and 1 granddaughter who are the joys of her life. After teaching adults and teenagers for many years, she has recently launched her own business, Arise and Flow Ltd, providing social and emotional well-being resources, training and coaching to individuals, families, churches, educational and business organisations. She specialises in neurodiversity, high sensitivity and high learning potential.