Tantrum Therapy

Allowing Negative Attitudes and Feelings to Happen

Positive thinking, it can really screw you over. When you’re in the middle of a meltdown how do you feel when someone tries to persuade you to look at the positive or to be positive? Do you thank them and say ‘yes you’re right, how silly of me, let’s chant an affirmation’? NO - you want to tell them to shut the $#@% up and shove their positivity where the sun definitely isn’t shining…

Do You Escape to the Future?

The Gift and Power of Feeling in the Present

Mindfulness seems to be everywhere. Touted as the new-age solution to all of our problems, the messages to be ‘mindful’ and ‘in the present’ are liberally plastered across all forms of social media, self-help blogs, magazine and books. But what does it even mean to be ‘in the present’ or ‘mindful’?

The other day a lovely client was telling me about how she had invested in a Mandala Colouring book. She was busily colouring away when her husband walked in to the room and asked her what the hell she was doing in that typically direct and judgemental tone that husbands seem to have. While she wanted to reply that she was ‘mindfully colouring’ in order to relieve worry and stress, achieve blissful levels of inner peace and present-moment nirvana, she felt the pang of a panicked reality check as she looked down at her pencils, it was a good question – what was she actually doing? And why? Was she mindfully colouring or colouring mindlessly?

Allergies: The Emotional Connection

Ah...Springtime,  new life, flowers in bloom, the smell of mown grass, warmer weather and..allergies. In Australia the frequency of allergic disease has roughly doubled in the last couple of decades and it is now estimated that at least one in three Australians will be affected by allergies at some time in their lives.(1)

An allergy is basically a condition of hypersensitivity to a substance (allergen) which might be considered harmless to most people. The immune system reacts (or overreacts) to a substance, causing inflammation symptoms. 

This condition of hypersensitivity can be caused by many things such as the toxicity or acidity of the body, poor liver or kidney function, parasitic or fungal infections, hormonal imbalance and so on. But I have come to be particularly interested by how our own emotions can create hypersensitivity.

Having suffered from multiple sensitivities and intolerances over the years I am unfortunately quite familiar with the debilitating effects of allergies. Yet this also means (being the curious perfectionist) that I have had many personal opportunities to analyse (over-analyse?) the intricacies of allergic responses.

About a year ago I experienced a career setback and found myself being consoled by my family over a glass of wine as I recounted the gory details of my stressful ‘drama’.That night I barely slept, my sinuses were completely blocked, my stomach blew up like a balloon and my eyes felt so puffy I could have used them as one of those squeezy stress balls. I was puzzled by this allergic reaction since I had previously dealt with all my allergies – why had one reappeared? Thankfully I never have to wait long for an answer because I can use Kinesiology to assist me to quickly identify the stressors at hand. During the balance the offending substance was identified, as well as the primary cause and the time of the trigger. The trigger was the badly-needed-drink and whinge-fest with my family, the offending substance yeast and the cause? Emotions! Shock, anger and embarrassment to name a few. And I had to agree with my body - these were the exact emotions I had felt as I talked to my family.

So it really can be quite simple, an allergy can be due to a basic Pavlovian response. The body learns by association, when we experience strong emotions during a time of stress our body may create an association with any substance we come in to contact with during this time. For example, a client who presents with an allergy to wheat due to experiencing workplace bullying while working at a bakery or a baby who develops an allergy to milk due to a stressful breast-feeding session. 

While I have seen examples of this working with clients, I was pleased to discover that this emotional connection is also explained by science. A relatively recent development is the field of Psychoneuroimmunology. Dr Richard Ader conducted the first study of how our body can be conditioned to associate to external events with the foods ingested during those events. Ader gave mice an immune-suppressant drug in a saccharin solution and then he just gave the mice the saccharine solution without the drug. What he observed was that the saccharine alone was enough to decrease their immune system function. The mice had quickly associated the taste of saccharine to simultaneous immune suppression. This explains why the human body may create negative associations, if a trauma is linked to a particular food, smell or substance, the body may remember to react as if in trauma when exposed to the food, smell or substance in the future – it has been conditioned through a strong association. If an emotion is strong enough (which is a perception of trauma) the same applies.  

As we have discussed before, all illness is a state of dis-ease in the body. A blockage in energy such as a trapped emotion is one such example. An emotion linked to a trauma is a good example of the body’s intelligence at work. You might want to consider this the next time you choose a topic of dinner-table conversation!


1)   Australasian Society of Clinical Immunology and Allergyhttp://www.allergy.org.au/

Emotions and Meridians


In Traditional Chinese Medicine, meridians aredefined as the channels in which energy (Chi) flows to nourish the functionsand organs of the body. The flow of Chi is fundamental to our state ofwellbeing and any form of physiological or emotional disharmony is thought tobe caused by blockages or disruptions in energy flow along the meridians. In forms of healing based on this philosophy, such as acupuncture, the goal isto correct the energy blockage or disruption and restore the energy flow along the meridians.


 Dr. George Goodheart, a chiropractor and founder ofApplied Kinesiology, discovered the relationship between the meridians andthe major muscles of the body. He found that correcting the performance of amuscle would also restore the energy flow along the meridian associated withthat muscle. 

Dr. John Diamond, a world renowned holistic healer, spent over 35 years building on Goodheart’s work and developing the Acupuncture Emotional System (AES) which links each of the twelve meridians with an emotional state. According to Diamond, illness always begins at energy level. A stress (mental or physical) will trigger a reaction or particular emotional state. This emotional state causes a reduction or imbalance in energy in a particular meridian. If this emotional state persists it will eventually lead to a disease or illness in the associated meridian/organ.

For example, Diamond (along with many other psychologists and cardiologists) found through many years of experience that most cardiac patients have great difficulty dealing with anger. The emotion of anger creates a negative energy imbalance in the heart meridian. While this underlying emotion of anger persists, it also continues to disrupt the energy flow in the heartmeridian and over a long period of time develops into cardiac disease. Now, this does not mean that every angry person is likely to suffer heart disease, but Diamond’s studies show that most people with heart disease have experienced an imbalance in the heart meridian related to anger.


It is also important to note that the emotional states or attitudes which cause energetic imbalances are often unconscious – that is, we don’t even know we are experiencing them. This is simply because we repress negative emotions which we find troubling or which we feel that we cannot deal with at a particular time.

While it might be scary to realise the extent to which your negative emotional states are stemming your energy flow and creating the potential for illness, it needn’t be. This is because the way to reverse illness or restore energy is quite simple. Using Kinesiology muscle testing Diamond demonstrated that a weak muscle for the heart meridian caused by a negative emotion can be reversed simply by introducing an opposing, positive attitude. For example, a heart meridian imbalance will be shown by a muscle that tests weak to the statement “I am angry”. Simply stating “I forgive” and focusing on feelings of forgiveness, will cause the muscle to become strong, indicating that energy to the heart meridian is restored. Yet again proving that a positive attitude is vital to our health and wellbeing.  

The Main Emotions Related to Each Meridian:

Source: John Diamond, MD. Life Energy.1985

Source: John Diamond, MD. Life Energy.1985