The world is full of silent screams and lost souls, the symptoms of broken lives. These broken lives can be inherited from our parents and passed onto our children.
We are all children of past broken lives and all parents of future broken lives. We need to heal these broken lives from the inside out, one step at a time. Now is the time.
For people who want to heal and grow
Our unique evidence based approach uses psychological and Aboriginal ways to connect the whole mind, left/right, verbal/non-verbal, conscious/unconscious.
Using Aboriginal ways of story, song, art, movement and language within a psychological structure we offer powerful and unique techniques for mental health. No matter what has happened to you or what you have done there is a way through. We know that people do ‘bad’ things when they are in ‘bad’ places.
A healthy mind has a weblike network connected throughout the body and expands through wisdom and love.
These three paintings show the healing journey from fragmentation, to the journey within, and then being complete and connected. Each person’s journey is unique.
An unhealthy mind has ‘closed loops’ or holes in the network, like roundabouts with no exits.
- Stress, anger, depression, anxiety, obsessive compulsions are all examples of thoughts/feelings or actions going round and round (‘closed loop’).
An unhealthy mind ignores the needs of the body,
- Alcohol, substance abuse, and eating disorders are examples of mind/body disconnection.
An unhealthy mind is contracted through ignorance and fear.
- Controlling, manipulation, social isolation are examples of halting growth
We offer a 2, 3 or 6 day Healing through ‘the map’ group program to experience the process of healing. No-one is required to share any part of their life. Some people may attend this program many times, some will practice these techniques for themselves on their own, some may join a weekly healing group, and others may have targeted individual therapy. The choice is yours.
If you are emotionally mentally shattered we recommend the 6 day healing through ‘the map’ program (10am to 3pm).
If you are emotionally mentally flat or frail we recommend the 2 day healing through ‘the map’ program (9am to 4.30pm).
When we run programs in prison, we run a 3 day healing through the map program due to the time constraints (9am to 3pm).
When people experience trauma/abuse (where something bad was done to you or you saw something bad happen, or you did something bad to someone else) it impacts your nature and energy patterning. Healing trauma and abuse group program to experience two additional processes, one to discard the energy patterning of the other and secondly reclaiming your power. Once again no details of the abuse or trauma needs to be shared.
We also offer a one day Healing stress; unresolved stress is the start of a hole in your mind’s network, that can be customised for your workplace.
2 hour A way through ‘the map’ an overview of the two, three or six day program.
We also offer take home programs for people who cannot get to a program for what ever reason. These include:
- Self repair tool kit 2 years of activity based therapy in a box value at $150.
- Stuck! 20,000 leagues from the centre of your life the workbook from the kit. Only $80
- Individual chapters from the workbook are only $5, each chapter is likely to take about one month.
For organisations or community groups we can run programs in co-operation with you to heal members of your community.
We do recommend that workers in your community have done Kwidjaan Training so that the community has the capacity to support the community members.
- Healing through the map
- Healing trauma and abuse (need to do the healing through the map program first)
For Aboriginal people
- Strong families = strong communities
- Healing trans-generational trauma (need to do the healing through the map program first)
- Healing through the map
For people who are shattered or really really broken
6 day (10am to 3pm)
- Healing through the map
Plus the take home Self repair tool kit, that shows you how to heal your own life. If you are shattered please work with an experienced therapist.
All artwork has come from participants of the programs.
View StoryChoosing a therapist
The best advice I can give you for seeking out a therapist is to ask for a recommendation, ask your doctor, family or friends. A personal recommendation is usually the best. In Australia, it is possible for someone with no training to provide services, and some people have only done a weekend course. Please ask about their qualifications and experience; in 12 years of working as a psychologist I was only asked once. Sometimes people simply ask about fees. For repairing something as valuable as your mind, often the cheapest quote will not be the best option. And, if someone has had therapy, that doesn't make them a therapist; you wouldn't get a person who had an operation to operate on you.
One of the most important things when you see a therapist is that you get along with them, if after the initial visit you don't feel a connection with them or believe they cannot help you, then don't go back. A therapist needs to treat you with respect and ensure you are kept informed about what they are doing. They shouldn't be tricking you or making you feel like a number, a piece of meat or their pay packet. These are common complaints I hear from people who have gone, usually to unqualified people and inexperienced people, but sometimes to therapists who should know better.
Please remember that therapy can be confronting and you may not always like what you find out about yourself. However, it is only when you know this that you can change anything about yourself or learn to accept this.
View StoryDrug use your choice of no choice?
Drug use – your choice or no choice?
(First published in Drugwise)
Some time, some where you are journeying through life, walking down the road; you are feeling good. You notice the trees have flowers and the birds are singing. Soon a misty fog comes in, but you are not worried, you have walked in fog before. You have walked at night before, you are fine. Suddenly you are falling. Falling. Nothing to grab hold of. Panic. You are reaching out grabbing at the air. Nothing below your feet, you look up and you cannot see the road you were on.
Splash! You reach water, the Swamp of Feelings*. You are overwhelmed, you are scared, you are sad, you are mad and you are relieved that you are not falling any more. You realise you are screaming, you are yelling and you are crying. You see that people are looking at you. In that instant you stop and swallow hard.
After a short while you begin sinking, you are finding it hard to breathe, you can barely see, you can't think properly, you don't know what is happening to you, you even worry that you are going crazy. Then you hear whispers "Here. Take this. It will make you feel better." You reach out and take what is given to you. Amazingly, your breathing is better, you can see, you can think and you do not care what happened to you, because you are feeling better. However, you are suspended and have nothing to stand on, you cannot feel the ground and you don't know where to go or what to do and you are in pain.
Slowly you sink again and your breathing becomes harder, you are having trouble seeing again, and your thinking is hazy. You reach out and take what you took before. Although this time it doesn't quite work as well, your breathing improves, but there is still haze in your thinking and you cannot make out the colour of people's eyes. You need to take more. This happens several more times, but you don't seem to improve very much at all. After the effects of what you are taking wear off you seem to have sunk deeper and when you take something you only seem to get back to where you were yesterday. You are in great pain. You feel it through your entire body.
Eventually, you are in the Depths of Despair* at the bottom of the Swamp of Feelings*. Now when you take what worked before it takes only the edge off. You lift off Rock Bottom*. You are scared. What are you going to do when your feet don't leave the bottom? You have heard that people disappear through to the other side. You do not want this to happen, although maybe it would take all the pain away.
Then, one day your feet don’t leave the bottom. Suddenly, in the flash of an instant, you realise that if you are at rock bottom, you know where you are, you have a reference point, if this is the bottom you need to go up. You begin making your way to the surface of the Swamp of Feelings*. On your way up you notice that some people in the swamp are using stuff like you did. Other people are using food to take away the pain, some are using money to buy stuff at the shops, some are betting money, some are working hard to make enough money to take away the pain. You realise that everyone is coping the only way they can and what you use depends on what you are handed or what whispers you hear.
As you reach the surface, the feelings that you were trying to swallow come back. You are scared. You find yourself trying to avoid them, but instead of swallowing them, you are going to put them behind you. So you start spending your time thinking about anything but the road you were on or about being in the Swamp of Feelings* Soon you find that you can control your feelings, you just don't think about them. You are now in Avoidance Marshes*. Soon you are not feeling sad but you are not feeling happy either. In fact, you feel nothing. You are numb. You notice that when you talk to other people you talk about the weather, you don't talk about any personal issues. You don't seem to connect with people. You don't feel love for anyone. You can still say that you do, but you don't feel it. You feel an emptiness inside of you; you need to fill this emptiness. Most of the people around you are the same; it is a bit like you cannot touch anyone. Everything is kept at a distance from you.
Someone suggests that this will get you high and make you feel happy. You take it. It works wonderfully, it fills the emptiness inside, and you feel like you can touch the people around you. It makes you feel happy! You tell yourself this is not the same as before because you are not using it to take away the pain, you are just getting high and having some fun. A little fun did not hurt anyone. Soon though you find that you need to take more to fill the emptiness.
You notice that other people who are in Avoidance Marshes* have other ways to fill the emptiness. Many do not realise what they are doing. In fact, in our society everyone is encouraged to avoid feelings. Some people fill the emptiness by thoughts, others by being busy every minute of every day, others by buying things they don't need and some by controlling everyone or everything around them so that they never have time to look at the emptiness inside of them.
After a while you find that you cannot fill the emptiness anymore but you do not care. You do not care whether you live or die. The emptiness has turned to nothingness you no longer have to fill it. You still take stuff, there is nothing better to do. You have no pain, you feel nothing, you think nothing, and you have no hope. You find that the people around you don't care either. They say they are your friends, but you know that they would stab you in the back if you had something they wanted. Day in day out, it is all the same to you. You are no longer living life, but simply existing. You have become lost in the Desolate Desert* and the only thing in your life is the stuff you have been taking. You will do anything to get it. Around you are other people who are existing anyway they can, and like you they don't care about themselves anymore. Some of them, you discover, have never been on the road, they have always been in the Desolate Desert*, they were born there.
One day you meet someone who shows you a map, they have been lost and found their way back, they are back on the road You can see on the map where you are and where you need to go. You need to get to the Seemore Mountains* because at the Seemore Mountains* you can see clearly your choices in life and the alternate roads you can journey along.
You realise that when you are stuck somewhere in the map, your choices are hidden from you. Although people tell you it is your choice, you cannot see what they are. You do what you have to do to survive. You had no real choice. You did the best you could do at the time. Now, you can see that you need to get to the Seemore Mountains* where you can make informed choices. You now have some hope that your life won't be like this forever.
Looking at the map, you also see that when you first found yourself in the Swamp of Feelings* you needed to swim across and recover in the Forest of Hope*. Then climb the Rocky Paths* to reach the Seemore Mountains*. You also see the other places in the map you bypassed. You discover the real problem was you never learnt to swim. Why hadn't you been taught how important it was to learn to swim through your feelings, not swallow them down, not avoid them, nor disconnect from them? Then you realise that very few people in your life knew how to swim and they were all doing the best they could with what they knew.
By Roslyn Snyder
View StoryFeeling Down
When you are feeling down
Take a moment to remember a clown
That joyous glee when he fell
or when he wet you with nothing at all
When you are feeling blue
Remember the incident with the glue
How it was stuck so fast
You just had to laugh
When you are feeling sad
Remember a time when you were glad
It may not be long ago in time
But it seems a lifetime in your mind
When you think you can't go on
Go and buy some floral thongs
Or make a colourful paper hat
Look in the mirror and laugh at that.
Written by Roslyn Snyder
View StoryWrapped in a Rage
Like an animal trapped in a cage
People can become wrapped in a rage
Sometimes it has been with them so long
That they believe they are King Kong
Sometimes it is buried deep down inside
or sometimes it is wrapped around behind
It stays with them like a putrid smell
And is deep down at the bottom of the well
It bubbles up like boiling milk, unseen
And leaves around a stain that sheens
Then it sinks back down and lies in wait
For a while it becomes a forgotten state
But when the time is right it bubbles
And you know there's going to be trouble
If only these people could fill the well
With something good rather than hell
Written by Roslyn Snyder