Archive for Meditation

Six Ways to Shine 6 #BeHereNow

Do you recognise that most of the time your mind is away with your thoughts? Do you get distracted to the point that you can’t follow what people are saying? Are you missing key chunks of the day due to wandering off? Do you find your concentration muscle is withering away so that tasks take hours when they could take minutes?

Well you are in great company! In our modern culture, where we are overloaded with incoming streams of digital information and technology makes it easier and easier to flit between one thing and the other, our brains are changing accordingly and we are losing the ability to #BeHereNow. I notice how lacking in presence people are and I have begun to find it unsatisfying to be around people who are constantly distracted and can’t really hold the conversational space or tune in to what’s really going on… Having a busy, distracted mind is one of the most common symptoms my clients talk about when we first meet.

So if our minds really do go #AWOL, what sorts of problems do we face?

  • poor absorption of facts, figures and information resulting in what feels like a bad memory
  • low productivity leading to having to work longer hours than necessary and frustration that this happens
  • poor quality connections in relationships due to the other picking up on the distraction, or the lack of presence
  • lack of empathy or intuitive connection
  • unfulfilling conversations or unsatisfying interactions
  • creating an inner environment of stress caused by negative mind wandering
  • lack of capacity for really enjoying the moment as it is
  • lethargy and tiredness caused the the unnecessary syphoning off of mental energy into overthinking
  • no off switch, often leading to insomnia

The good news is, despite the modern epidemic of distraction, it is extremely easy to remedy with the right brain training tools and techniques.

Many meditation methods are designed to train our attention onto a specific focus instead of wandering off into the wilderness or our minds. When I created SHINE Meditation I included this as a key element within the techniques, because I realised the power of training attention and concentration and the #PowerOfPresence. I’d go so far as to say it’s a total game changer. SHINE is like a bootcamp workout for your attention muscle, meaning you can become the master of your attention. Tony Robbins, the global personal development guru, coined the phrase “Where your attention goes energy flows”, and this is so true. What gets our attention is what we become. What you focus on and create in your inner world, will literally raise your state of being. In addition, when you learn to use the power of your focus, your external world will benefit in two ways. Firstly, as you create a positive thriving inner state through mind and body, you create an inner harmony primed for health, happiness and success. This affects what you radiate outwards, how you perceive people, and how they perceive you, in a way which forges stronger connections and relationships. Secondly, when you can focus in your inner world, this up levels to focus and greater discernment in your outer world, meaning that you can strengthen your capacity to focus on what is important, on what will build you positive results, and you can more easily let the rest go.

I like the metaphor of the garden hose. The force of the water in the hose is like the force of energy in your mind through your attention. You can imagine a hose which has been left unattended, and the water is spraying out forcefully, but no-one is holding or guiding it, and it is causing utter chaos, swirling wildly and spraying anything and anyone in its path. Now picture the alternative, someone is holding and guiding the hose, directing it in a specific way. Same force, very different results.

Left untrained your attention wanders off, and why is this so bad I hear you cry? A little daydreaming never hurt anyone surely? And no a little daydreaming is fine. But what happens in the modern human mind is this: Your mind will wander and get distracted in all sorts of directions, but mainly, because of the way our brains are naturally predisposed to ‘negative’ writing, our mind wandering takes us off into stressful, anxiety producing thoughts, often in loops. This is called rumination, and it’s a top cause of stress, anxiety and depression. We produce the same stress response from our stressful thoughts as we would do from stressful events actually happening. Our brains do not know the difference.

When we drift off this is a borderline level of thinking that is mainly unconscious, we activate a ‘default network’ part of the brain called the posterior cingulate cortex – so a lot of the time we are not aware we are looping through these negative, stress producing thoughts. However, even thought the thoughts are just rumbling away under our radar of conscious awareness, our bodies are still making and physiological connection to these thoughts! Yes we are actually feeling our thinking at a cellular level through our bodies, without even being aware of it!! No wonder stress builds up to chronically toxic levels within our inner systems!

I designed The SHINE Program with simple techniques which train you in how you can shine the light of your attention onto positive thoughts, feelings and sensations. It’s SO easy when you know how. SHINE has been tried, trialled, tested AND proven for it’s positive results on mood, emotions, focus, happiness and stress busting. But SHINE subscribers also report being more present, attentive and empathetic in their relationships due to being able to focus on their friends, family and partners when in company, and being received as much better listeners, which of course creates a greater sense of connection.

I am currently offering my SHINE program for a special #FabulousFebruary offer. For just £87 you can access your own SHINE Program here…. #GetReadyToShine and #BeHereNow :

Lisa Bardell – BSc (Hons) Psych, Diploma in Clinical Hypnotherapy, Coaching & NLP Master – is a coach and therapist who retrained to follow her passion into Psychology after a 16 year business career at executive level. Lisa runs two busy practices in Cheshire and London and works with coaching clients all over the world via Skype. For a FREE 30 min consultation mail on

Six Ways to Shine 5 #ChangeYourChannel

Imagine if you could change the channel within yourself like you change it when watching the TV, looking for something more fulfilling or fun to get absorbed in? Imagine if you could even choose in advance rather than as a reaction to something you didn’t like?!

Well the good news is….and this might sound a bit odd until you understand the science, but as human beings we can choose our state of being through using the right tools and techniques. We can choose to change channel. And the even better news is, that with a little training, we can entrain our inner systems, our inner environments created by neural patterns which then create physiological patterns. Yes we can train ourselves to such a degree that our inner environments sort of ramp up the scale, week by week nudging up our inner default setting so it can move upwards on the barometer, towards a new and improving level of greater happiness, satisfaction, fulfilment, gratitude, peace, joy, love and freedom.

I’ve been using meditation style techniques like this for four years now, and in practical terms what it means is this. I know my inner state is not just a conditioned reaction to my outer world, i.e, ’things are going well’. When life is going great, we actually have no real clue as to how resourceful we are, or how resilient and anchored our inner feeling of security and empowerment is. When everything is hunky-dory we just cannot test the power of our inner state in the face of adversity, because all our external boxes are getting ticked.

However, when life is throwing you a smorgasbord of set-backs, a medley of messiness, and a daily dose of dilemma – you know, the way REAL life does – at this point when you are able to acknowledge and honour what’s happening, when you are able to lean into it instead of by-pass the mess, when you are able to calmly focus on what needs to be done and and making the best decision within an imperfect and complicated situation…. AND you can also settle into an inner state of peace, loving acceptance and creative fluidity AT THE SAME TIME – then you know you have mastered the art and the science of changing your channel.

I face many tests in my life, but I have reached the point where I’m able to remain calm, creative, connected and resourceful throughout, and I don’t have to turn to distractions or to self medicate to soothe the soreness. It’s through my own personal transformation and knowing what is possible for us all (because believe me I didn’t used to be this way! But that’s a story for another day…) that I felt genuinely inspired to share what I’d learned and create something for my clients which was a highly effective and reliable amalgamation of the resources I’d gathered over the years. That’s how The SHINE Program was born, and I designed it to form a delicious daily practice, so that whilst you’re training your brain, and learning to #ChangeYourChannel – it feels good! If it feels good, and you ‘get it’ you are going to stick with it and receive all the beautiful longer term benefits further down the line.

As I was researching and studying, I became increasingly interested in the cutting edge science of the electro-magnetic field of our hearts, and of the enormous power and output of our hearts as energy centres within the body. It was as a result of this work that I designed SHINE Meditation which you receive within The SHINE Program, as a heart centred meditation. The science on this subject is growing, bringing facts and figures to marry up with the ancient and handed down wisdom of many meditation traditions. I LOVE it when science catches up like that!!

Below you can see the image which represents the measurable energy field of our hearts, and you can see how fields of energy overlap and interconnect. What I found fascinating was that changing our inner state, changing our channel, actually then changes what we’re broadcasting outwards energetically to others and to our environments. Our heart output is 5000 times more powerful than our brain output, and when we are radiating love, peace, gratitude, compassion and joy in our inner environment, we are also sending these messages outwards through specific frequencies and electro-magnetic wave patterns through our heart fields. The wonderful news is, we can influence and lift others through our own powerful channel of choice. And interestingly, when we choose these high vibe channels, because we are like human tuning forks, we will resonate with even more of these like frequencies externally (remember tuning forks resonating in physics and getting REALLY loud when two like frequencies blend together?!) which means through changing our own channel we are raising the vibration around us too.

Electro magnet

Even more fascinating, is that our hearts also act like information processing centres, both broadcasting and receiving energetic information to and from our environments, so the channel we choose even starts to form a perceptual filter THROUGH which we perceive the world. This explains exactly why it’s possible to experience love, joy and gratitude in times of challenge and dilemma – it’s because we are receiving information and perceiving it through the channel of a higher state.

I have designed SHINE in such a simple, practical and step by step way, that all of this training is made easy for you. All you have to do is watch a few video tutorials, and take advantage of the four guided meditation audios and you will have all you need to build your own routine which suits you.

I am currently offering my SHINE program for a special #FabulousFebruary offer. For just £87 you can access your own SHINE Program here…. #GetReadyToShine and #ChangeYourChannel here:

Lisa Bardell – BSc (Hons) Psych, Diploma in Clinical Hypnotherapy, Coaching & NLP Master – is a coach and therapist who retrained to follow her passion into Psychology after a 16 year business career at executive level. Lisa runs two busy practices in Cheshire and London and works with coaching clients all over the world via Skype. For a FREE 30 min consultation mail on

Six Ways to Shine 4 #FeelYourWay


Have you forgotten how to feel? Or do you fear feeling too much? Or do you get overwhelmed by your feelings? These three relationships with feelings are all equally common across my coaching practice, and all in their own way equally unhealthy.

What happens for many of us when we have become chronically stressed (which we absolutely do not realise has happened) is that we become so completely caught up in mental energy, in analysis, problem solving, thinking, overthinking and rumination – that we live in our heads and get cut off from our bodies. Emotions and feelings are bodily events, we feel them in our bodies through our sensory capacity. Feelings, by design are waves of valuable energetic information coming up and through for expression. For us to thrive, rather than merely survive, we need to be tuned in, listening and allowing of this energy to move, flow and complete its journey through us. When stress shuts us off from our sensory experience, we lock the doors and block the routes to vital information. This means the body has to keep sending louder and more ferocious messages to get our attention. Often the body will resort to producing physical pain or a physical condition when all other attempts of waving the reg flag have failed. Either that or wild outbursts of stress fuelled emotion build up and erupt when we are triggered, causing us to behave in ways we later regret, as we reflect on our shameful losses of control.

Equally, many of us just dare not go there when it comes to emotion, we are subconsciously and occasionally consciously just sweeping pain and discomfort under the emotional carpet or holding it at arms length to protect ourselves from having to get our hands dirty or deal with the mess. We tend to like to keep things neat and tidy. But under the surface lurks the reality of our hidden carnage, causing insecurity, anxiety, irrational behaviour, and all forms of self sabotage including the old broken inner record of our negative self talk.

The only healthy and sustainable relationship to have with our feelings is one of allowing, welcoming and presence. Imagine being a really solid, loving best friend to your feelings. Imagine being able to hold the space for your own inner communications to show up and speak up, in the same way as you would do for a friend in need who wanted a loving ear just to listen. Not to fix, not to be hurried off, shamed into shutting up…. But to be heard and held. This is the sort of presence we need to develop towards our own emotional experience. And if we are one of those people who has become shut down to our emotional experience, we must first become intrigued and curious as to what has been numbed out.

When it comes to long term emotional balance, self awareness, social intelligence and reaching our full potential to shine brightly as our true selves, there is no short cut, we simply have to learn to get fluid, flowing and at ease with feeling our way through life. Anything less will steal our joy or at worst make us sick.

When I first developed SHINE as a daily self coaching program, I knew it was essential to include an evening ritual which encouraged and entrained self reflection, and was designed to honour the emotional challenges of the day in order that they could be released and transmuted, instead of clogging up our systems with subconscious clutter. Last year when I fine-tuned and revised the program I also felt it was important to offer a guided meditation technique through an MP3, which built on this important theme of emotional integration. It’s time we all gained this mastery, so that we believe there is nothing to fear from our feelings. Everything we think we want in life, every material achievement we think is important is really all for a feeling, it’s never about the ‘thing’ itself, but it’s always about what inner experience we will gain from getting the goal, reaching the level, fixing the problem….. Yet the less capacity we have for our ‘negative’ feelings the less we have for the ‘positive’ ones too. This leads us on an endless and often exhausting quest where the joy, the satisfaction, the love or the intimacy we desire is all but fleeting. We cannot hold it, we move the goalposts immediately and we end up getting just the merest whiff of what we wanted before we realise that’s not enough and we set off on the next mission to achieve more, do more, or create more drama or intensity so we can feel more of what we think we want to feel. All the while focussing on the destination instead of the vehicle itself. All the while doing the exact same thing but expecting a different result.

If you are ready for a different result, a deeper and more sustainable feeling of fulfilment, joy, contentment, peace or happiness which resides deep on the inside rather than the outside, then it sounds like you’re ready to SHINE.

I want to share SHINE far and wide, and I have a very special #FabulousFebruary offer on to celebrate a re-launch of a fine-tuned version of the original program, my offer is at £20 OFF, for just £87.

For just £87 you can access your own SHINE Program here…. #GetReadyToShine and #FeelYourWay here:

Lisa Bardell – BSc (Hons) Psych, Diploma in Clinical Hypnotherapy, Coaching & NLP Master – is a coach and therapist who retrained to follow her passion into Psychology after a 16 year business career at executive level. Lisa runs two busy practices in Cheshire and London and works with coaching clients all over the world via Skype. For a FREE 30 min consultation mail on

Six Ways to Shine 3 #SlowDownForSuccess


I used to want everything in my life to happen at high speed. Certainly everything in my business career happened fast, and I believed it needed to because that was the culture of the businesses I was brought up in, and later on it was the culture I created when I was leading businesses.

Anything less fell short. Yet I realised back then, even before I knew the science about how speed can ironically slow us down and make us inefficient, that people seemed to work themselves up into a frenzy, and in doing so they were not flourishing. Myself included probably! When you have concrete deadlines, plenty of people to please and the goalposts are constantly being moved at the very last minute, you barely have time to catch a breath.

As I took the conscious decision to slow down, to retrain to work one to one with coaching and therapy clients and to run my own business, I knew that I finally wanted space to breathe, to eat, to sleep. I realised I wanted space and time for myself, and I created a life with a lot more pottering time built in. Immediately this brought me huge joy and I was perplexed as to how I had ever managed without it, but I realise not everyone is in the position, or has the inclination to do this. So this blog is not actually about slowing your life down, it’s about slowing you down. I soon discovered the science of slowing down on the inside, for greater success on the outside, and it’s what I teach many of my executive clients who are struggling to find balance in their high pressure jobs, or are feeling jaded despite being seen as ‘successful’…

So what does the science show us? We stimulate our fight or flight response in our brains when we have too much to do. Our thoughts set off our stress response in just the same way is if were were really under threat. Thoughts of ‘what will they think?’ ‘I’m not good enough at my job’, ‘they don’t like me’, ‘I must climb the ladder because I can’t survive on this salary’, ‘why did they promote her instead of me?’, ‘I don’t fit in here’… can all trigger us into a state of chronic stress.

Chronic stress is the most common way we sabotage our success, yet most people are totally unaware that it’s going on inside their bodies and brains and they just assume it’s effects are due to their external environments, putting all the focus outside of them instead of focusing on the inside. We can always take responsibility for our inner environments to change them in a way which is supportive. We do actually have control over this with the right techniques and insights. However it’s ironic that most of us are entrained and conditioned to put ALL of our focus on trying to control our external environments, usually other people, where in reality we have very little control at all!!

I wanted to tackle all of this in The SHINE Program, I felt it was time to help people address the issue of their inner environment unwittingly working against them being able to create the outer success they really want and deserve. The SHINE Program trains you into creating an optimum inner environment for health, energy, focus, good decision making, great memory and recall, and generally feeling good and ready to take on the world!

You will have heard me talking about Flow and Coherence in the previous #SixWaysToShine blogs. However, when we are talking about slowing down for success, there’s another aspect of your body’s functioning that specifically needs to slow down in order for your to be in your most resourceful state, and that is your brain wave frequencies!

This is something I’ve really focused on with The SHINE Program, which is probably best described as a meditation style brain training system for inner relaxation, happiness and health – all of which equips you to shine brightly as the best and most successful version of yourself.

I have created four guided meditation MP3’s within SHINE, which use the very best in cutting edge technology to have you relaxing, re-couperating and replenishing at the deepest level. I have used binaural beats to literally entrain your brain wave frequency to a deep and slow Theta Wave as you listen!

What are the benefits of this? Well in our daily state of stress or focus on tasks we are in a higher frequency brain wave state called Beta, the more stressed we are, the faster our brain waves, and with this fast and chaotic brain wave activity comes fast and chaotic mental activity…

Have you ever experienced…

  • a super busy mind which will not switch off
  • insomnia due to your mind whirring and ruminating late at night
  • constant distracting thoughts which ruin your focus on what is important and take you off track
  • over thinking and over analysis leading to analysis paralysis
  • a constant voice of your own inner critic
  • poor recall of facts, figures and words, just when you need it most
  • feeling drained of energy and numb after big projects

Well this is all due to fast and chaotic brain wave activity, which literally saps your body of precious energy diverts it way from more important roles within your body! These are signs you might want to learn some mastery over your brain activity and to #SlowDownForSuccess

Once you have learned to slow it all down from using SHINE, or by listening to the Theta Wave audios every day or so you will receive these blissful benefits and will be wondering how you ever managed without it! You won’t want to go back…

  • clear and fluid thinking
  • improved problem solving
  • better creative flow
  • more focus and concentration on the task or project
  • feeling more grounded and emotionally resilient
  • absorbing and recalling facts and information more easily
  • communicating more clearly with access to the language and the expression you desire

I want to share SHINE far and wide, and I have a very special #FabulousFebruary offer on to celebrate a re-launch of a fine-tuned version of the original program, my offer is at £20 OFF, for just £87.

For just £87 you can access your own SHINE Program here…. #GetReadyToShine and #SlowDownForSuccess here:

Lisa Bardell – BSc (Hons) Psych, Diploma in Clinical Hypnotherapy, Coaching & NLP Master – is a coach and therapist who retrained to follow her passion into Psychology after a 16 year business career at executive level. Lisa runs two busy practices in Cheshire and London and works with coaching clients all over the world via Skype. For a FREE 30 min consultation mail on

Six Ways to Shine 2 #ShrinkYourStress


Did you know you could shrink your stress without having to shrink your life?

You see most people mistakenly put all their focus on their external world when thinking about shrinking their stress. No wonder it feels like a big deal! We are not taught the truth about what stress really is, and as a result we are all fuelling the lie that we live every day…. We believe that other people cause our stress, that our jobs cause our stress, our families, or our partners, or that there is too much month at the end of the money and it’s that which causes our stress.

But the truth is, none of these outside factors have the power over you to cause you stress on the inside. Your stress is an inside job. No matter how routine or long standing your stress has been, it is not inevitable at all. Your stress is just a response. If someone is sitting indoors in sunglasses and says it’s dark, we can all see that that’s not true. Once they take those glasses off, they will realise that the room wasn’t dark, it was the lenses that were making it look dark. Now you might think this a a simplistic metaphor, and I’m about to launch into some sort of campaign to extol the virtues of ‘positive thinking’. Yes and no. Yes positive thinking is OK, I’m not going to knock it, but let’s be clear – if you just made a decision to try your best to think positive, but you did it with the same negative thinking brain you started with, it would be a very flimsy strategy and wouldn’t bring about much change. In fact what a lot of my clients say when I first meet them, is that they know they ‘should’ think positive, they try their best, and then they end up using their failure as yet another stick to beat themselves with. Which, yes you guessed it….causes more stress!

So I’ll explain to you what needs to happen on the inside, in order for you to have a truly transformed experience of the outside. Just like the sunglasses have a filter which cause the outside world to look different, your brain has a filter too. Through this filter your perceive the world. We all have our own unique blueprints for how we perceive the world, based on all our years worth of programming and conditioning. Before we are seven years old, a huge proportion of our perceptual filtering system is in place, based on our emotional experiences. These emotional experiences, especially our negative ones, or our traumas, get etched into our bodies through our limbic system. The limbic system is the survival, fight or flight system. It does a brilliant job, and it is primitive, it likes to keep things simple rather than cerebral. Our limbic systems rule our subconscious minds, and our subconscious minds rule us. Rather than using logic or reasoning, the subconscious limbic system think in terms of lack or white, good or bad, right or wrong, safe or scary.

In our brains there is an extremely important area called the amygdala. This is the limbic brain, it controls the triggering of our fight or flight, which means it knows and decides what will stress us out. What happens in the modern human, because we have so many information streams coming in, and so many roles to fulfil and dilemmas to reconcile compared to our more primitive ancestors who lived simpler lives with less technology, our amygdala gets over stimulated and as it keeps firing off the fight or flight response it gets bigger. Bigger and better at doing the job of stressing us out. Genius. And there you have it. We are walking around with over exercised, over developed amygdalae, which completely distort our perceptions of the world around us to the point that we find anything and everything stressful. And we feel overwhelmed, under resourced and like we haven’t got enough time to boot.

So you see, not much is going to change, until you literally #ShrinkYourStress by shrinking your amygdala. Positive thinking will not cut it…Professor Sara Lazar, a neuroscientist from Harvard University proved that meditation shrinks your amygdala. When we use a specific brain training tool or technique, especially of we use it regularly, it will literally re-wire our brains for positive change. How we perceive our world can totally change, without the world having to change at all. So as we change our perceptual filters, we perceive our world differently, which means we can reduce our stress, feel happier and more positive, improve our concentration and memory, feel more connected and at ease in relationships and behave more confidently and assertively. All from the INSIDE!

I have created something wonderful which can help you achieve all of this, because I am passionate about helping my clients move from stressing out and burning into shining brightly as the best version of themselves. I designed my own brain training system, called The SHINE Program, and I know how powerful it is at shrinking stress, because I have tried, tested and proven it!

When I trialled The SHINE Program last year, it came through the study with 100% positive stress busting results for all of the forty people who took part in the six week protocol. We used three standardised stress measures before and after the six week period, and everybody reduced their stress significantly. But that is only part of the story! The reason I know for sure that stress is not caused by our circumstances is this….

Whilst I was testing the group, three of my lovely participants had some really bad luck, and they had to go through three of the most ‘stressful’ life events as they were on my program. One lady received a cancer diagnosis, another suffered a bereavement of her father, and another broke up with her long term partner. And for all of their deep emotion as they navigated through these awful challenges, still their stress levels were REDUCED by the end of The SHINE Program!! Even after all that ’stress’, their stress levels were LESS not more. Isn’t that phenomenal!!??

I want to share SHINE far and wide, and I have a very special #FabulousFebruary offer on to celebrate a re-launch of a fine-tuned version of the original program, my offer is at £20 OFF, for just £87.

For just £87 you can access your own SHINE Program here…. #GetReadyToShine and #ShrinkYourStress here:

Start shrinking your stress and shining brighter right now.

Lisa Bardell – BSc (Hons) Psych, Diploma in Clinical Hypnotherapy, Coaching & NLP Master – is a coach and therapist who retrained to follow her passion into Psychology after a 16 year business career at executive level. Lisa runs two busy practices in Cheshire and London and works with coaching clients all over the world via Skype. For a FREE 30 min consultation mail on

Six Ways to Shine 1 #GetInFlow



We hear so much casual talk of flow. Everybody wants more of it. But what the heck is it? And more importantly how can you get it for yourself?

Most people find that their flow comes when ‘life’ goes well, but goes again as soon as some challenges crop up. Well you don’t need me to tell you that you’re probably not going to shine your brightest light out into the world if you only have access to fleeting, fair weather flow.

As with most words which appear in the world of personal development, flow is more than just a metaphor. It’s a real thing. There is a science to flow. The power of your flow, the longevity of your flow, and how quickly you can return to flow is a scientifically measurable phenomena, with real results, and tangible benefits for the flow-er!

The good news is you can totally train yourself into the state of flow, and you can consciously choose to return to flow when you realise you’ve lost it.

But what is flow specifically? How would you know if you were in flow? And what’s the big deal with it?

Flow is measured through the variance of the spaces in between your heartbeats. It’s not your heart rate, that only gives you half the story. Your heart rate can be fast or slow but that won’t tell you if you’re in flow.


Flow doesn’t even mean that your heart beats are evenly spaced (that’s not natural, it’s not how hearts work). What it does mean, is that if you plotted a graph of your heart beats they would be getting faster. And then slower. And faster again. But this graph would be a smooth and even wavy line.

The proper term for what is measured when we are in flow, is called Psychophysiological Coherence. It means all the body’s systems are energetically coordinated, in harmony, fluidly communicating fully and optimally with each other.

When we are in heart coherence aka in flow, we are in the most energy efficient state possible. Mind, body and emotions are all in sync.

Flow comes with SO many benefits you will wonder how you ever got on without it!

If you imagine in your body there is a store cupboard of ingredients, and from those same ingredients your body can produce two different recipes. The flow recipe is what we produce when we are in heart coherence. From the parent hormone pregnenalone, we produce the wonder hormone called DHEA. This is all about health, anti aging and vitality!

However, there’s also a rather toxic recipe the body can make from the same stores of pregnenalone, and that is the stress hormone cortisol. Cortisol is the no-flow hormone that causes us to age, get sick, store fat and gain weight by slowing our metabolism. It also erodes the neural connections in the hippocampus area of our brains which makes us lose our memories, lowers our mood and causes erratic emotional outbursts, sensitivity and reactivity.

When we are in the no-flow state we are stressed, fearful, angry, impatient, lacking empathy, distracted, ashamed, guilty or sad.

We also experience a shutting down of our higher cortical functioning which means we lack discernment, are more likely to get addicted or dependent, lose concentration or lack focus on goals for the future, and have a much lower level of self perception and intuitive awareness of others.

The graph of the space between our heart beats would be random and utterly chaotic. Many people are stuck with the no-flow state most of the time, they are anxiety prone and more likely to rely on substances to feed the starved reward centres in their brains with a quick but fleeting fix (nicotine, alcohol, drugs, food, sugar).

Flow = Harmony  No Flow = Chaos

When you’re in flow you will experience more…

  • Emotional stability
  • Emotional awareness – it’s actually easier to honour and observe our true emotional experience through flow, and therefore it’s easier to articulate and express our emotional experience with others
  • Energy
  • High quality rest & sleep
  • Mental sharpness
  • Focus & concentration
  • Access and recall of information and words
  • Creativity & problem solving genius
  • Joy, happiness & bliss!! (even when life deals you a smorgasbord of setbacks, it will not steal your joy or rob you of your resources)
  • Empathy & connection with others
  • Present moment awareness & presence to hold space for people

Discovering flow and training myself into it, was my number one motivation for creating The SHINE Program and helping other people to learn it too. SHINE is all about heart coherence and flow, and within it I have combined the two best and globally recognised techniques for creating flow. I have followed and researched the latest neuroscience and heart science findings to bring you a #GetInFlow method which is so simple and reliable anyone can learn it. You can literally go from no-flow to flow in a matter of weeks. I have proven the results of SHINE through a standardised trial study too, so you can trust that it is tried and tested.

If you would like to learn a simple and highly effective technique for yourself, I have developed a practical program based on modern Applied Psychology and Mind-Body Science, called SHINE – ‘A Daily Meditation, Relaxation & Self-Coaching Technique’ which teaches you to access and
nurture the optimal Brain – Heart – Body state of Psychophysiological Coherence for improved Health, Happiness & Success – SHINE was statistically validated in January 2016 through a standardised trial protocol with 40 people, for its effectiveness and positive results on health, emotional wellbeing, mental wellbeing, stress management and improving productivity.

I want to share SHINE far and wide, and I have a very special #FabulousFebruary offer on to celebrate a re-launch of a fine-tuned version of the original program, my offer is at £20 OFF, for just £87.

For just £87 you can access your own SHINE Program here…. #GetReadyToShine and #GetInFlow here:

Lisa Bardell – BSc (Hons) Psych, Diploma in Clinical Hypnotherapy, Coaching & NLP Master – is a coach and therapist who retrained to follow her passion into Psychology after a 16 year business career at executive level. Lisa runs two busy practices in Cheshire and London and works with coaching clients all over the world via Skype. For a FREE 30 min consultation mail on

How exactly does Stress cause Illness and Disease? The latest Science on the ‘Allostatic Load’

Stress is bad for us…

stressApparently. Well we all know that by now don’t we, because even the medical profession say so quite openly? But HOW exactly is stress bad for us? HOW exactly does something as commonplace as stress affect our immune systems and cause illness, and later disease? ( Aside from the emotional and psychological havoc it wreaks as well! ). If you’re interested, read on – I’m going to summarise the findings of recent research carried out in the U.S. by J G Logan at The University of North Carolina which introduces a more tangible and robust link, and certainly adds credibility to the role of mind-body based clinical interventions to help resolve, reverse ( yes really ) and prevent physical and mental health related problems.

Allostatic Load

It turns out it’s all to do with something called the Allostatic Load ( anyone who has attended one of my Mind Calm Meditation workshops will have heard me talk about this before: ). The Allostatic Load is an immunity-sapping burden which gets placed on our bodies and organs when our natural adaptive process of ‘Allostasis’ fails. So let’s just understand Allostasis before we go on.

If you remember back to Biology lessons in school, you will recall a similar term: ‘Homeostasis’ – the two processes are designed to keep us stable and well, they are similar but different.

Homeostasis is a sophisticated feedback mechanism, designed to reduce variability and maintain a constant environment throughout our bodily systems.

Allostasis actually favours variability over constancy, because it is our flexible adaption process – it is our internal environment adapting and changing in response to our external environment, or our stress producing psycho-social challenges.

So the Allostatic Load refers to the way in which normal allostatic adaption processes simply wear out or shut off – meaning that our internal physiological systems are rendered unable to adapt. Frequent or chronic responses to stressors, produce this shutting off in several of our important ( and essential for health and wellbeing ) physiological systems:

  • Immune system
  • Sympathetic nervous system
  • Hypothalamic-Pituitary-Adrenal axis

This forces our bodies into several types or combinations of ‘response patterns’, which can be thought of as ‘overactive or inefficiently managed allostatic responses’ – It is these energy sapping and inefficient responses which ultimately result in chronic illness. Let’s just dig a little deeper into the science to understand HOW that happens…..

These responses involve the whole brain and body.

The brain is where our response to stressors begins. It is here that the individual’s brain ‘decides’ what is going to be perceived as stressful – although we recognise some obvious common ‘stressors’ in the modern world, they are in fact different for everyone – The perceptions of the brain are influenced by individual differences including: genes, historical experiences, early development and learned behaviours. So it is our own individual ‘perceived stress’, which then initiates the physiological and behavioural responses, and these responses then lead to allostasis across various bodily systems.

A combination of health damaging effects then happen:

  • Adrenaline and cytokines cause tissue damage or receptor desensitization in the organs
  • Glucocorticoids cause a suppression of the immune system
  • Cytokines cause atherosclerosis ( clogging of arteries ) and obesity
  • Cortisol results in atropy ( dying off ) of nerve cells in the brain which leads to anxious depression – in fact certain areas of the brain can actually shrink and become less functional, one example of such is the hippocampus which is important for memory and new learning
  • The amygdala – the part of the brain most important in setting off the physiological stress responses – actually grows. Yes the more stressed we get, the better our brains become at triggering us into even further stress!!

This is why we need to start taking stress seriously rather than normalising it and wearing it with a badge of honour. It may be an overused word in everyday language, but it is a potent force which is making us sick, less capable, emotionally unstable and in many cases – seriously ill.


So why do some people seem to succumb to the effects of stress yet others fare better? And how can we use this knowledge to help vulnerable people?

Resilience, as defined by Fossion and Linkowsi ( 2007 ) is:

“The ability to successfully adapt and function proficiently when faced with traumatic circumstances”. Resilience minimises wear and tear, keeps the Allostatic Load to a minimum. 

Some people, down to a combination of their genetics, their childhood experiences and their early developmental environment, are just ‘wired up’ in their brains for better resilience. Others are conversely ‘wired up’ for less.

Firstly, the good news is the brain is plastic – meaning whilst it can shrink and grow in a way which is not useful – it can also grow and shrink in reverse, in ways which are helpful and reverse the effects of stress and boost resilience. This ability of the brain to change is called Neural Plasticity, it describes the brain’s inherent ability to ‘re-wire’.

In other words, people who have become less resilient can change their brains, with the right interventions to enhance their resilience and completely change what might have seemed like their biological fate and their physiological outcomes. Many recent studies have shown that clinical interventions increase resilience, reverse stress and change health outcomes.


One practice, which has gathered a robust body of clinical evidence over the last 10 years is meditation. A modern meditation practice such as Mindfulness, has been shown to reverse the signs of stress, at a cellular level, and to completely re-wire the brain in as little as 8 weeks ( Professor Sara Lazar – Harvard Medical School )  – Modern forms of meditation are growing on popularity in integrative therapeutic approaches to improve emotional health, as well as with growing number of professionals who want to resolve their stress levels to perform better, feel happier and create more success in their lives.

If reading this has inspired you to make some changes to your own stress / life / health – and you would like to work with me One to One or in a Group Coaching format, you can read more or make enquiries via the following links:

–      My website –

–      Mind CALM Modern Meditation Workshops held all over the UK – MIND CALM

–      Mind CALM Meditation taught in a relaxing retreat setting ( Ibiza or Bordeaux ) –

–      ‘Serenity & Success Coaching Workshops’:

MANCHESTER Thursday 10am-5pm 14/05/15

LONDON Thursday evenings (x3)  4/06/15 & 11/06/15 & 18/06/15

–      Corporate Coaching Programmes –

Lisa Bardell is a Performance Coach, NLP Master Coach, Clinical Hypnotherapist and Modern Meditation Coach running private clinics in the heart of the City of London ( Liverpool St ) and Cheshire, and Corporate Coaching Programmes for businesses in Manchester and London. Lisa leads regular Coaching Workshops and Retreats, tickets and details can be found in the Eventbrite link:

The Mechanics of Meditation – How it changes your Brain and your Life…

How many of you have nothing but a passing curiosity about meditation, or are actively resistant to the very idea of it?

Are you wondering what all the fuss is about? Why on earth are cross party reviews considering funding modern meditation training for schools, front line health workers, prison workers, and even prisoners? Why are CEO’s, entrepreneurs and business leaders taking to modern meditation techniques to help them perform at their peak in business, and reach their full potential?

Well, it’s not just about ‘relaxing’ and sitting still for a while. There’s a proper science to meditation, which literally re-wires your brain for improved success, wellbeing and emotional resilience – on a scale you most probably can’t even imagine if you have yet to dip your toe in to mastering your own mind.

I think it was Osho who said so wisely…

“Your mind can be a beautiful servant. Or a dangerous master”

mechanics of meditation

The chances are, if you have not yet learnt mind mastery in the way meditation allows you to, you may well be at the whim of your mind. It’s probably using and abusing you. At the very least it will be tricking you and limiting you, in ways which are so insidious and familiar, you will have just accepted them as your lot.

To cover all the key findings of Neuroscience, and how meditation changes your brain is unrealistic for this blog post, as there are thousands of studies to comb through. However I will just focus on a couple of key areas, which I hope will make sense and resonate.

Scientists working in the field of meditation, researching it’s effect on the brain now even have their own name – ‘Contemplative Neuroscientists’ – and the magical piece of equipment they use to measure neural activity and changes in grey matter, connectivity and functionality is the MRI scanner. Neural Plasticity is the term used to describe the well established fact that the brain is able to ‘collapse’ and destabilise old connections and patterns, and to wire together new ones. Although establishing new neural connections both within an area of the brain, and between areas, sounds rather sci-fi, the good news is, it’s actually remarkably easy to achieve with the right techniques.

Default vs Awareness

There is an area in the middle of the brain called the Posterior Cingulate Cortex, this can be thought of as our ‘default network’ which ( unless we have been taught meditation ) we drift into unconsciously most of the time – where we dwell on the past, ruminate, predict the future and get caught up in loops of thinking about our ‘self’, life, external circumstances, and how they might affect our ‘self’. We tell ourselves stories about our ‘identity’ – it’s the home of self referential thinking. Sometimes we can get so absorbed in thinking about our own lives we barely notice what is going on around us.

What meditation techniques teach, is to quiet this area of the brain down. When we do this, we experience ‘effortless awareness’, where we are fully aware of our selves, and our environment, without engaging in an internal dialogue about it, and what it ‘means’ to us. It is not just a form of concentration, but rather a quality of experience which is ‘non-clinging’. This state of awareness is associated with slower brain waves, it uses much less energy, and it returns us to the absorbed awareness we had as children when we were in rapid and expansive learning mode.

We may still be aware of thoughts when we are in this state, but we can learn to just notice them as they pass through, rather than jumping in to the seat of the emotional roller coaster with them. When we are engaged in self-referential thinking, we start ‘feeling the thinking’ and we produce a physiological and measurable response to it. This is how we create chronic stress for ourselves – without meditation most of us have no mastery over our self-referential thinking, and we unconsciously trigger off the ‘Physiological Stress Response’ with our own thoughts about our selves and our lives.

What researchers have discovered, is that the common element of drifting into ‘thinking’ which causes Anxiety and Stress is ‘judgement’ – as opposed to just noticing. Meditation techniques allow you, through increased awareness, to consciously notice thoughts, even thoughts about stressful events, without producing a ‘Physiological Fear Response’. So meditation is actually not about stopping your thoughts completely, instead the benefits come from forming a different relationship to your thoughts, and reducing their emotional charge. The result is having mastery and choice over which thoughts you engage with and think about.

As well as feeling good for the meditator, this also conserves a lot of bodily energy, because it is no longer being sapped by the most exhausting and labour intensive of all brain functions – unnecessary and unproductive thinking – this previously wasted energy can be directed back into the active processes of healing and repair in the body, and allowing the immune system to keep us vibrant and healthy as designed – rather than literally just muddling through in survival mode!

Shrinking the Fear Centre

Within about 8 weeks of taking up a regular meditation practice, it has been shown through research that the Amygdala, the part of the brain responsible for setting off the ‘Physiological Fear Response’ actually shrinks. So rather than it acting like a pumped up, over-exercised muscle which becomes genius at stressing you out over the slightest little thing – it shrinks and calms down allowing you to feel calm, peaceful, safe, secure and able to get on with life and perform to your full potential.

Reclaim your Attention

With the ability not to drift into stress producing thinking, or to get overly distracted by the (often pointless) self-referential thinking, we learn to reclaim our attention and to master our minds. Another main benefit of this is that we can be much more focussed and highly productive, and we listen much less to than annoying inner critic who tells us it might all go wrong / that we are not clever enough / pretty enough / confident enough etc….

Live in Flow

Stress acts like a switch. It switches off our clever, resourceful, creative thinking, and instead switches on emotional and reactive thinking. When we are free from those old stress hormones coursing through our systems ( even the ones we didn’t realize were there ) this opens up our experience to living much more in flow, accessing our best creativity, problem solving and intuition. Life and opportunities can begin to come to us more easily, instead of living with a sense of constant striving and effort, achieving becomes easier and more natural. Sometimes there is less to do than you think….

If you would like to learn a simple and highly effective technique for yourself, I have developed a practical program based on modern Applied Psychology and Mind-Body Science, called SHINE – ‘A Daily Meditation, Relaxation & Self-Coaching Technique’ which teaches you to access and nurture the optimal Brain – Heart – Body state of Psychophysiological Coherence for improved Health, Happiness & Success – SHINE was statistically validated in January 2016 through a standardised trial protocol with 40 people, for its effectiveness and positive results on health, emotional wellbeing, mental wellbeing, stress management and improving productivity. 

To book the SHINE Meditation Online Program – click here: BUY HERE

To book your FREE slot to ‘test drive’ my new book ‘Shine Brighter – 7 Easy Steps to Less Stress and More Success’ and the accompanying Theta Wave Hypnosis Audio Program, mail me on telling me a little about why you would like to be considered and I’ll get back to you by September.



Lisa Bardell BSc ( Hons ) Psych, Dip NLP Coach Clin Hyp – is an Executive Coach, Author of ‘Shine Brighter’, Creator of the statistically validated SHINE Meditation & Coaching Online Program,  NLP Master, Accredited Meditation Coach and a Registered Clinical Hypnotherapist working with private clients One to One from her practices in Cheshire and Central London, and through Corporate Coaching Programs with businesses in Manchester and London. Her regular schedule of EVENTS, WORKSHOPS & RETREATS can be found on: .To view more information on all services click website link:

Some science on Emotion and your Brain

brain articleHave you ever pondered what the science is behind the barely tangible, but extremely familiar daily experience of feeling emotions? Sometimes we feel these formless waves of inner communication so strongly that they seem to run the show. As a therapist I’m fascinated by the science of emotions.


In a recent article by Rick Hanson PhD, he shares some interesting information on the major brain regions that support our processing and experience of emotions. I’m going to give you a whistle stop tour of your brain, and the areas within it which influence our moods and feelings.


Our conscious experience of emotion is just the top layer of icing on a much bigger cake. It rests on many layers of neurological activity such as the firing of very complex and intertwining neural circuits and the tidal flows of neurotransmitters and hormones such as dopamine, serotonin, and oxytocin.


So let’s look at the brain regions and their role in our emotional experience.


  • Hippocampus – This region helps store the contexts, especially visual-spatial ones, for important experiences, such as the smell of a predator or the look of an angry expression. It is necessary for forming personal memories of events, and is unfortunately damaged over time by the cortisol released by chronic stress, especially, high or even traumatic levels of stress. If you needed another good reason to resolve your stresses, and to take up meditation, then here you have it.
  • Amygdala – Connected to the hippocampus by the neural equivalent of a four-lane superhighway, this small, almond shaped region is particularly involved in the processing of information about threats. The subjective awareness of threat comes from the feeling of the experience when it is unpleasant. When the amygdala perceives a threat – whether an external stimulus like a car hurtling towards us at speed, or an internal one, such as suddenly remembering we are on a tight project deadline – the amygdala sends a jolt of alarm to the hypothalamus and other brain regions. It also triggers the ventral tegmentum, in the brain stem, to send dopamine to other areas of the brain, in order to sensitize them to the “red flag” information streaming through.
  • Hypothalamus – This is the major switchboard of the brain, involved in the regulation of basic bodily drives such as thirst and hunger. When it gets a “red flag” signal from the amygdala, it communicates to the pituitary gland to kick start the adrenals to release epinephrine and other stress hormones, to get the body ready for immediate Fight or Flight action, known as the Fight or Flight Response or the Stress Response. This very same activation of the Stress Response occurs not just when a wild tiger chases us through the woods, but also in a chronic and ongoing way to our ‘imagined’ threats and everyday stresses, like when our boss reprimands us, our deadlines get tight, or when we respond to internal mental events such as pain or anger etc.
  • Prefrontal Cortex This region is involved in anticipating the future, making plans, organizing action, monitoring results, changing plans, and settling conflicts between different goals. These are called the Executive Functions. Where emotion is concerned, the Prefrontal Cortex helps us to foresee the emotional rewards (or penalties) of different courses of action. It also inhibits emotional reactions. Many more nerve fibers head down from the Prefrontal Cortex to the Limbic System circuitry than in the other direction. The left side of the Prefrontal Cortex plays a special role in controlling negative emotion and aggression. For example, stroke victims whose left Prefrontal Cortex is damaged tend to become more irritable, distraught, and hostile. Activation of the left Prefrontal Cortex is associated with positive emotions, which, has been proven to be stimulated by long term meditation practice. Once again, just in case you needed any further motivation to meditate, you have it right here!
  • Anterior Cingulate Cortex – This sits in the middle of the brain, centrally located for communication with the Prefrontal Cortex and the Limbic System. It monitors conflicts between different potential objects of attention, for example ‘Should I notice the flowers in these bushes or that snake slithering toward me?’,  ‘Should I listen to my wife’s story or focus on this TV show?’. It flags these conflicts for resolution by the frontal lobes. Therefore, it lights up when we attend to emotionally relevant stimuli, or sustain our attention to important feelings – inside ourselves and other people – in the face of competing stimuli. In action, this would help us to read and sense emotions in others, instead of perhaps getting lured off track by their words which might attempt to contradict their true emotion.
  • Nucleus Accumbens – In conditions of emotional arousal, especially fear-related, the accumbens receives a major wake-up call of dopamine, which primes it to receive information coming from the amygdala and other regions. Consequently, the accumbens sends more intense signals to the brain relay station for the motor systems, which results in heightened behavioral activity. This system works for both negative and positive feelings. For example, the accumbens would light up if an addict were to see their drug or drink of choice.
  • Insula – The insula is involved in picking up the inner sensations of the body, the changes which come with different emotional states. It is the brain region which unlocks the deeper layers of your emotional life, and it is also key to empathy, to being able to sense the primary emotions in others, such as fear, pain, or disgust.

As a therapist and meditation coach I love to understand a little more about the inner mechanics of neural patterns, those very patterns, connections and brain regions which we are able to change for the better with effective therapy and meditation practices.

Neural plasticity is the term which is used by neuroscientists to describe the ever changing inner structure of connections and connectivity within the brain. The good news is, that your brain is not a genetically pre-determined lump of matter. It is plastic, and with the right guidance, interventions and practice, it can change in a way which results in more positive emotions, improved resilience, less stress, better concentration and quicker learning.

Lisa Bardell is a Performance Coach, NLP Master Coach, Clinical Hypnotherapist and Modern Meditation Coach running private clinics in the heart of the City of London ( Liverpool St ) and Cheshire, and Corporate Coaching Programmes for businesses in Manchester and London. Lisa leads regular Coaching Workshops and Retreats, tickets and details can be found in the Eventbrite link:


The Science of Stress: How to Resolve It….Without having to Change your Life

Some of us wear Stress like a badge of honour

stressStress has become such an overused word in our day to day language, and this normalisation has distracted us from the inconvenient truth about its physiological, psychological and emotional toxic load. It’s time to wake up…..Ignore this at your peril!


I wrote this article for National Stress Awareness Day last year, 5th November 2014. It presents you my take on the modern Science of Stress – and the latest research which supports how a practice  which has been around for centuries is increasingly being seen as ‘cutting edge’  solution….


What is Stress?

Stress is caused by the activation of the Stress Response also known as the Fight or Flight Response, it is designed to get us out of danger – it can be thought of as a turbo boost of energy, like the body going into a different gear to prepare us to have the strength and energy to fight, or to flee from threat. Our ancestors would have used it to survive from predators or danger. It revs up the body like this:


  • Increases heart rate and blood pressure
  • Dilates blood vessels to muscles to pump through sugars and fats
  • Kickstarts the respiratory drive so we start to sweat to keep ourselves cool
  • Thickens the blood
  • Pumps out inflammatory chemicals to activate our immune cells ready for tissue repair if we get wounded in fight or in escape

It is a major physiological, neurological, immunological and metabolic event! It effects changes throughout our whole system.

Clearly, it is an evolutionary adaptation designed to help us respond to a clearly perceived present moment threat, to save our lives….

So what’s gone awry?

Well put simply, as modern humans we are too ‘clever’ for our own good. Now what happens on a weekly, if not daily basis, is that our cognitive function works against us. Our ability to think, to analyse, recall the past and predict the future is what causes us stress.

Our everyday thoughts cause our stress. They do so in a way that physiologically is as ‘real’ as if we were genuinely having to escape a wild, hungry tiger, an axe wielding intruder, or a high speed bus with failed breaks…

What drives or produces our stressy thoughts?

Let’s look at some Psychology. If we break the human experience down into very simple terms, we have three important ‘need systems’ which we are driven to meet.

  • 1/ Safety – This is the drive to feel safe and secure in order that we can experience peacefulness.
  • 2/ Satisfaction – This is the drive to seeking rewards in order that we can experience contentment.
  • 3/ Connection – This is the drive to seeking attachment in order that we can experience feelings of love.

These three need systems and their respective drives influence our behaviours in two ways….Firstly ‘avoiding’ behaviours so we can avoid pain, harm and danger. Secondly ‘approaching’ behaviours so we can illicit rewards and pleasure.

If one or more need system is not being met, we activate the Stress Response.

We might consider the constant activation of the response as a modern violation of the evolutionary model, where the Stress Response was designed to come in short bursts. Today, sadly it has become a chronic and ongoing reaction.

So how does this effect us?

Well the emotional and psychological effects are broad ranging, any of the below might be what you would notice in yourself or others:

  • Lack of concentration
  • Poor decision making
  • Creative blocks
  • Worrying
  • Negative thinking
  • Mood swings
  • Lack of motivation
  • Frustration and irritability
  • Tearfulness

We have all been there!

Physically there’s a whole other batch of symptoms, due to what science terms the Allostatic Load, this is the bodily wear and tear that becomes a burden on our physical as well as mental health due to our natural ‘Adaptive Responses’ to external perceived stressors getting worn out, and simply shutting off.

  • Aches and pains
  • Muscle tension and teeth grinding
  • Frequent colds and infections
  • Allergies and skin irritations
  • IBS
  • Weight gain
  • Indigestion and heartburn
  • Dizziness and palpitations
  • Tiredness and fatigue
  • Insomnia
  • Memory loss due to shrinkage of the Hippocampus
  • High blood pressure

All in all it’s rather unpleasant, but more importantly in the long term this toxic load causes inflammation in our internal environment, and taxes the immune system very heavily meaning we succumb to illness and chronic disease as the body’s self healing mechanism gets switched off.

Please say there’s some good news!

Indeed there is….What science has now shown us, is that once we learn how to switch off the Stress Response, when it is not necessary, we can reverse all of the effects of stress right through the body, at a cellular level, and throughout the brain as well.

The major breakthrough in this understanding came from Herbert Benson MD, who discovered that the body has a capacity for an opposite response to the Stress Response, which works as an antidote to it, it is called the Relaxation Response.

Ok, how do we do it?

There’s a really simple solution which will only take 15-20 minutes of your day, and it has been around for over 2000 years! Meditation is the answer

Scientific research into people who meditate discovered there were dramatic physiological changes versus non-meditators:

  • Decreased metabolism
  • Quieting of the body
  • Decreased heart rate
  • Slower breathing rate
  • Slower brainwaves

All of the above are integral to the Relaxation Response, and these studies allowed it to became recognized by science, it was measurable, predictable and reproducible.

MRI scanning has allowed science to look at the brain in a way which was not possible previously. Modern research has looked at how meditation changes the structure of the brain, something which it has always done since it’s origins, but which had not been measured until the last decade.

What goes on in the brain?

The amygdala is the part of the brain which produces the Stress Response. Recent research by neuroscientist Dr Sarah Lazar, Assistant Professor in Psychology at Harvard Medical School, and associate researcher in Psychiatry at Massachusetts Genera Hospital, has shown that with regular meditation, the amygdala gets ‘turned down’ and shrinks, it gets quieter in a way which is consistent with decreased arousal and greater feelings of peace.

What’s interesting is that in the study the external life of the participants had not changed at all, it was simply their response to their external ‘stressors’ which changed. Reducing stress is not about changing your life, it is about changing your relationship to your life. Simple!

Mind Calm Meditation

If you would like to learn Mind Calm Meditation with me, get in touch. It is a simple, modern and highly effective technique created by best selling author, acclaimed meditation teacher and award winning trainer Sandy C. Newbigging. I have been trained personally by Sandy to teach this method and I offer it as One to One coaching or in Group Workshops.

Take a look at these pages of my website for all of the information you will need. Or book on to one of my UK Mind Calm Workshops which take place most Saturdays all over the country:

Workshops –

Retreats –

Mind Calm Information and Testimonials –

Corporate Coaching Programmes –

Lisa Bardell is a Performance Coach, NLP Master Coach, Clinical Hypnotherapist and Modern Meditation Coach running private clinics in the heart of the City of London ( Liverpool St ) and Cheshire, and Corporate Coaching Programmes for businesses in Manchester and London. Lisa leads regular Coaching Workshops and Retreats, tickets and details can be found in the Eventbrite link: