Self-Confidence vs Beliefs

From conception through to roughly 7 years of age, our subconscious programming and beliefs about ourselves and our environment are set by absorbing what happens around us.  This includes family life, time at school or out at play with friends or spending time with Grandparents, Aunts and Uncles and so on.  This also means that a child that spends a lot of time outside in nature observing the natural world will form subconscious programming by taking in and absorbing what goes on around him or her outdoors.   This becomes the program that starts playing out in our daily lives from 8 years old through to adulthood in the form of habits, behaviours and of course – beliefs.

Often we hear people make comments about how their husband or wife behaves just like their mother, or father: and this is because it is a learned habit or behaviour that has been programmed into the subconscious mind. 

Perhaps when you were a child in school something happened in class that formed a belief for yourself that you were not good enough.  It could have been a project you were working on, spending hours trying your very best.  When you handed the project into your teacher you were told it could have been better, or that you needed to do it again as it wasn’t right. 

This could have absolutely crushed you, leaving you with a belief that you were not good enough and the thought that you probably needn’t bother because it won’t be good enough.

The teacher, however, may not have meant their words in that way at all and would be horrified to think that their words had had such a dramatic effect on you.

Our PERCEPTION of events and situations is what creates the beliefs, the programming at the subconscious level of our mind and this is what drives us each and every day.

It is suggested that 95% of our day is driven from our subconscious mind whilst our conscious mind, our thinking and creative mind, only operates at 5% and if you observe your current life situation – it is a mere reflection of your subconscious programming.

How is that program working for you? 

If you would like to change the program, to change any limiting or self-sabotaging beliefs or programs at the subconscious level of your mind – you can.

PSYCH-K® is a super-fast, simple and effective way to make incredible changes in your life and this approach can be used with ANY aspect in your life by transforming your subconscious BELIEFs around it, for example:

  • lack of confidence to apply for a particular job/promotion
  • inability to stand up in front of people and give a presentation
  • stage freeze – when asked to give an opinion in a meeting
  • wanting to do something you know you can do but terrified of failure/embarrassment
  • interested in pursuing a relationship but believe that you are not good enough
  • always feeling you have to try really hard because what you do is never good enough
  • doubting your own judgment – never trusting yourself to make the right choice

This list can just go on and on.   

These limiting beliefs stop us from being the best version of ourselves every day – but they CAN be changed.  The subconscious programming CAN be re-written.  YOU can change it and your life can change too. 

The PSYCH-K® approach does not diagnose, cure or heal any situation or condition and does not replace professional medical treatment – what it does do is help you modify or change any limiting beliefs held at the subconscious level of your mind – helping you change the print-out of your life.

For more information on how the PSYCH-K® approach can help you with any confidence or self-esteem issues, please visit or email with your query.

Relieve depression without drugs

Today’s generation seems to have forgotten how to nurture and care for themselves. Seriously, it does seem that way. It’s all work with a hurried busy lunch break and as soon as the work day is over we rush home and seem to have a never-ending list of chores needing doing, or children to feed, bathe, help with homework, pick up from sports or a friends house. Before going to bed we have to make sure we have the family’s clothes ready for the next day, plus the children’s school bags and in between that we are always responding to texts, emails and so on.

When your system is in constant overdrive it will eventually forget to switch off. This is when we start to have trouble, often in the form of weight gain, trouble sleeping, digestive disorders, sensitivity to light or noise, food intolerances, skin irritations, irritability, booze binging or chocolate binging and of course – depression. Our mind needs to rest and recover as well as our body. Our system needs to reboot!

There are a number of things you can do for yourself to help shake this off – but it takes commitment on your part to yourself. A walk in fresh air is always good for you (if you have mobility issues find a way that suits you to go outside and enjoy fresh air), it helps get your circulation going as well as stretching out those muscles and it helps to clear your mind. If you live near a park, or a wooded area you can immerse yourself in nature and get away from the buzz and fuzz of traffic, television, music blaring, phones going off all the time – you can actually start to hear ‘YOU’. My ‘go-to’ place is Salcey Forest in Northamptonshire – there is a five mile walk (and shorter ones) and I always feel so much better in myself when I’ve done the walk. Even better if you have dogs – perhaps borrow a neighbours dog for a walk if you don’t have dogs! This action really does help lift and alleviate depression – but you need to make that commitment to yourself to do it.

Taking time out for yourself in other ways works too. Book yourself a facial treatment, or a massage once or twice a month. Give yourself that time to shut yourself down and switch off – be the one being pampered and taken care of. Sometimes we just need that sense of ‘being looked after’. As couples, you could book yourselves a Spa Day and take the time to communicate, relax and enjoy each others company.

Meditate. You can find guided meditations on the internet, so find one that works for you and commit yourself to making that time in your day to quietly meditate for 15 / 20 minutes.

Book on a Mindfulness workshop – or find a Mindfulness therapist who can help you be more aware of your thoughts and actions – and help you change them so that you are more positive and uplifted.

Volunteer with a charity that means a lot to you – do something nice for someone else… just because you can. Expect nothing back – just do something nice for someone every day for a week (why stop at one week – make a point of doing 20 nice things for people in one month!).

The beloved TV is the biggest killer of communication within the family. Make one evening every week TV FREE (including phones tablets laptops) and maybe play a board game – talk to each other about ‘stuff’. Check in with your children and actually spend quality time really listening to each other and sharing things that may be on your mind. When you are suffering depression some people tend to feel quite isolated – even with their family in the same room! This action plan can really help bring back a sense of togetherness and improve family relationships. Make it fun and enjoyable. What do I do? Once or twice a week the television is switched off – soft music plays in the background and we talk – and we listen – we share our ups and downs and it brings us all closer together. Try it.

Attitude of Gratitude! Give thanks every day for 5 or 10 things in your life. You’ll probably find that list growing to 15 or 20 things to be grateful for. This small action has a surprising way of helping you to see the good that you have in your life already. The more you show your gratitude the more you have to be grateful for. You may think this is a load of bottlewash – but you try it for a month!

Counselling, or Talking Therapies will always have their good place in the world. It used to be taboo to admit you have seen a counsellor or that you need to see one – but things are changing rapidly. People are becoming more and more aware of how trained therapists can help – its all about Mental Health Awareness and suffering depression is so much more common that people realise. The causes for depression vary so much and it recognised now that it is not something that you can ‘snap out of’. Find a therapist that you really ‘resonate or click with’ and try to hold the belief that you are taking responsibility for yourself by seeking help. That is such a courageous first step!

There are a number of therapies or modalities you can try, from Hypnotherapy, Spiritual Healing, Art Therapy, Mindfulness Coaching, PSYCH-K(R), Cognitive Behavioural Therapy. There is so much more out there that may be your key to stepping away from the use of drugs to manage and cope with depression.

I know that sometimes the use of Anti-Depressants is actually a good thing – but SHORT TERM to help you through a really rough patch, unless specifically required for medical reasons.

I do believe that too many people have become increasingly reliant or dependant on Anti-Depressants/drugs to help them cope, when they really could and should be making lifestyle changes, choosing a more natural way and taking responsibility for their own lives, for themselves. I do not, in any way, mean to discredit people who are currently taking drugs for their depression. For many, it is necessary and they are unable to cope without the drugs. There are also many people in my life, though, that could make a choice – but they don’t.

I must say here – do NOT just take yourself off any medicated drugs you are currently taking as you absolutely need to wean yourself off anti-depressants with your GPs consent. With your GPs supervision you could try to reduce the dosage whilst you make a few positive adjustments in your lifestyle and habits, try a few of the things I’ve mentioned above – try them all. Just try.

Self Care and Self Love is an incredibly valuable commitment worth making.

Benefits of Regular Massage

Regular Massage Benefits – A customers’ story:

Regular Massage

When I first met Laura at Kirkys Therapies, I was suffering with a lot of tension in my back caused by a sedentary job, and a lot of heavy lifting and moving at the weekends (garden makeover and a house move).

As the months went by, and Laura worked her magic, I felt the neck tension get better and the back pain lessen. Regular massage certainly seemed to be working.

Stopping The Routine

Then I stopped the regular massage (the house move took over my life for a bit) and the pain came back with a vengeance. In fact the pain had moved into my hip too.

The pain was so bad that even sitting for prolonged periods caused a searing, burning ache in my hip and buttock.

How I Benefit

Eventually, I called Laura and booked myself in for a very gentle (ish) massage.

Laura realised I was one giant knot, and set to work on my aching body. The crunching and popping slowly ceased with every prod and poke, and after a little bit of movement to release the soft tissue in my hip and buttock, Laura ended the hour with a much needed head massage to help unwind me.

I booked myself in for the following month.

I can honestly say that in the days between the massage, I felt no hip pain whatsoever until the two days before the next massage was due.

It was like someone had taken the pain away and popped it into a box for safekeeping.

I would recommend a regular massage to anyone, as it helps relieve my tension and pain on a long-term basis.

Of course, my story may be very different to yours, but I really appreciate the effort Laura goes to, to ensure that I am crunch and pop free until the next time.

Thank you Laura.

– Tracy (very happy customer)

Manage Lymphoedema with Lymphatic Massage

Lymphatic Drainage Massage mechanically moves excess fluids through the body tissues via lymphatic vessels.   It helps to reduce the swelling (oedema) and reduce or eliminate pain.  It is also known to boost energy levels and flush toxins from your body.

Lymphatic Drainage Massage is a very gentle and light technique used to move the interstitial fluid under the skin.  It stretches microfilaments just below the skin which control openings to the lymph vessels allowing the interstitial fluid to enter the lymphatic system.

Facial Oedema occurs for a number of different reasons.  It is important to know what causes this and in some instances a medical examination may be advised prior to proceeding with a Lymphatic Drainage Massage.

Medical Conditions that benefit from Lymphatic Drainage Massage

  • Lymphoedema
  • Glandular Fever
  • Polymyalgia
  • M.E. or Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
  • Migraines
  • Sinus problems, Hay Fever
  • Cellulitis
  • Digestive issues
  • Stress, Anxiety
  • Acne, Rosacea and other skin issues
  • People who suffer regularly from colds/flu
  • Pre or Post Operative conditions particularly where lymph nodes have been removed or impaired
    (with cancer treatment, this must be in remission/clear as there could be a danger of moving cancer cells. It is advisable to have the Doctors permission to proceed with Lymphatic Drainage Massage)
  • Post cosmetic surgery
  • Sedentary lifestyles where there is not much physical movement (elderly/frail/ill)

Other benefits of Lymphatic Drainage Massage

  • Helps to boost the immune system
  • Helps to ward off illnesses
  • Helps with pain from fractures and sprains
  • Promotes the body’s own healing mechanisms

Feel free to contact Kirkys Therapies with any queries you may have.

How To Ease Or Relieve Neck Pain/Tension?

I find the most common cause of constant neck pain or neck tension is actually from poor posture.  Here, Kirky’s Massages Northampton area is going to offer advice on how to prevent or relieve this pain. Read on for more information.

In today’s world, governed by mobile phones and computers, we are bending our heads forward and down a lot to look at the screens on our phones or the screen s on our desk.

Quite often at work you will find that we forget to ensure our desk monitors are at the right height for us and we are either bending forward and down, or perhaps they will be too high and we are bending our necks/heads backwards to look up.  Your desk screen should be at the correct height, in other words you should be able to look straight ahead directly into your monitor screen.

When it comes to our mobile phones realistically nobody will be holding their screen up in the air to look directly into it without bending their necks.  Thats not going to happen. We ALL tend to bend our neck and head down and forward to see what’s happening on social media or to send texts or watch a movie.

This also happens if your car seat is not in the correct position or you have a car seat with no lumbar support.  Your back will curve into a C shape with your head dangling at the top end of that C (which is your spine figuratevely).  I have noticed this myself as I have only been driving for roughly five years. I was always quite proud of the fact that my posture was good but I am very aware now that I am starting to develop that C shape and a slight forward head.  I have noticed my head is always bent too far forward when I am in the drivers seat and it is actually quite difficult to sit back and keep my head above my shoulders! When you buy your next car check the drivers seat for lumbar support and postural positioning!  

Unfortunately, over a long period of time the spine will begin to accept that C shape and forward neck and head positioning as ‘natural’ and it will stay there, gradually getting worse.

The effects of this will begin to show  as the shoulders begin to curve forward and a kyphotic spine begins to form.

Some symptoms you may experience if you suffer a  forward neck or kyphotic spine are:

  • Difficulty breathing (severe case)(curved spine squashing lungs/airway)
  • Fatigue
  • Mild to severe back pain
  • Rounded back
  • Tenderness/soreness around the spinal area
  • Neck pain / tension
  • Muscle tension in neck/shoulders causing pain

How do we correct, or fix this problem?

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Image courtesy of YogaUonline

The image above depicts  the weight of your head and how heavy it becomes the  more you bend your neck forward.

Luckily there are exercises you can do at home to help correct poor posture before resorting to medication or surgical correction.

I have inserted a hyperlink to a simple technique you can try at home at your own risk (if you suffer osteoporosis, arthritis, degenerative disc  or any other condition that affects your spine / bone structure, please consult your Doctor PRIOR to attempting anything shown or advised on this page.  I cannot be held responsible for your choice at home – please be responsible).  

1)         A technique to help reverse Dowagers Hump / Forward Neck   


2) Place your forefinger tip on your chin and gently push your chin into your chest.  This may feel strange at first and create a sense of pulling, or tension in your neck.  Do this gently and once you reach the stop position (where you cannot go any further) hold it for at least 20 seconds or longer if you can.  Do not over stretch yourself and stay well within your pain threshold if you do feel any pain. I have included a diagram to help you understand what I am asking you to do.

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Images courtesy of Jane Johnson – The Friendly Physio

3) This stretch helps releive neck and shoulder tension.

With a straight back, head upright clasp your hands behind your head, fingers interlocked with thumbs resting on the base of your skull (occipitals).  Drop your elbows in and allow your head to drop forwards until it comes to a natural stop. You should feel a slight pull along the spinal muscles and neck.  Very gently increase the pressure and pull your head downwards – ONLY GO AS FAR AS IS COMFORTABLE – overstretching can lead to muscle damage.   Feel the stretch along your spine (erector spinae muscles alongside your spine).  Very gentlyl rotate your head left to right, holding that pressure pulling down on your head.  You should feel the stretch in your neck and shoulders too now. GENTLY, and only as much as is comfortable for you. Stay well within your pain threshold.  

4) Stretch and open up your chest and shoulders.

Stand straight with your arms down at your sides. Keep your elbows by your sides and your hans by your hips and visualise a tennis ball between your shoulder blades.  Bring your shoulders back – squeezing that imaginery tennis ball as tightly as you can between your shoulder blades – Keeping your elbows and hands straight down at your sides – do not bend them.  Hold that tight squeeze for 10 seconds and then release. Bring your shoulders forward and squeeze them forward releasing that tension. After 5 seconds go back into the tennis ball squeeze and hold it for another 10 seconds.  Then repeat the 5 second forward shoulder squeeze and then repeat again one more time. In effect 3 reps of 10 second tennis ball squeezes between the shoulder blades. This is a very effective stretch release techique for the chest and shoulders.  Again, it is important to stay within your pain threshold. Do not overstretch – if it causes pain or is uncomfortable – stop!

5) Purchase a Pro-Foam  Half Roller (90cm by 15cm) for use at home or in the gym.

This is used as a postural correction device to assist in correcting upper body posture and to help reduce forward head posture and rounding of the shoulders.  Forward head posture can lead to a feeling of being ‘wound up’ and the some symptoms may present as:

Irritable Bowel Syndrome
Difficulty sleeping
Difficulty losing weight
Sensitivity to light and sound
Difficulty conceiving  

massages northampton

How to use:   

To be used preferably two times a day building up from 2-3 min up to 15 min at a time.   Lie on your and your tailbone on the pole, keep your knees bent, feet flat , straight arms and palms up. back with your head on the pole

Easy:   Arms at 5’ and 7’ o’clock position
Difficult: Arms at 3’ and 9’ o’clock position

massages northampton






Image and information above courtesy of SD

I do advise you to research SD Protocol and the Postural Correction Device for further information and guidelines in this particular method.  Please follow these links:

Please note:  I do not claim to be qualified in the SD Protocol approach.  I am merely advising you to follow your own research and be responsible for yourself.  I can say that I have used and still do use the Half Roller myself as often as I can to help prevent further posture deterioration in my own spine.  I personally find it makes a massive difference to my own health and wellbeing and to my own posture so much so that I intend to study this and add it to my existing portfolio as a Therapist.

For more information on the massages Northampton are as well as the other therapies on offer, feel free to browse the website or get in contact today!

Back Pain & Posture

A Therapist’s Observation

Back Pain & Posture

A new client comes in with back pain or neck issues and fills in the new client form for me.  I take a look at their posture. I also take a look at their occupation and am usually quite accurate in guessing where their problems are before they speak.

Plasterers, builders and plumbers I would ask if their issues are with knees, buttocks and lower back.  The answer is nearly always yes (although not always yes to the knees ).

Pavers, window washers and electricians  have issues with their thoracic and cervical spine / upper back, shoulders and neck and sometimes along the arm with tingling sensations in their fingers.

Neck Tension and the Cervical Spine

Secretaries and administration officers also have upper back and neck issues, plus their shoulders  tend to be very rounded and their heads tilted too far forward.  This automatically puts a strain on the neck and shoulder muscles.  Have you weighed your head?  It is rather heavy, you know.  When your neck tilts forward constantly, the muscles in your neck and shoulder have to support that weight.   Dowagers Hump forms at C7 (cervical spine vertebrae 7) and tension builds in the neck muscles.  The Trapezius muscle also takes the strain.  There are a lot of muscles connected in the neck which help support the heads upright position.  When the neck is not upright but tilted forward – all those muscles are now stressing because they have to work extra hard to support your head and eventually, it takes its toll.  This leads to – Common Back or Neck Problems!

Repetitive Strain

When your work is repetitive – any repeated unnatural postural position that is putting a lot of strain and stress on your body, the result is stressed muscle fibres.  Constant pressure placed on the muscles, ligaments and tendons in your body lends itself to complaints of back-ache, sciatica, piriformis syndrome, tension headaches and migraines, impaired mobility, frozen shoulder, carpal tunnel…. the list goes on and on.

Then along comes a stress overload and the muscle spasms, stretches, strains or tears. Either way, the owner of that body is in a lot of pain or at least really uncomfortable with a constant dull ache.

A session is booked with the massage therapist/masseuse (me) to ‘fix’ their Back Neck or Shoulder Pain & Poor Posture.  The issue probably won’t reverse and correct unless the client changes their postural habits though.

Postural Importance

Posture is so very important in everyday life. Common back or neck problems are so often associated with poor posture.  I attended a Manual Handling Train the Trainer course with National Training Services and learned quite a lot from that (along with my Level 3 Anatomy & Physiology Course for massage).  That information helps me now in my personal  life but also helps me recognise postural issues causing so much trouble for my clients.

It has so much to do with that dreaded word – POSTURE.

Back Pain relief
Image courtesy of Pain Management Clinic – London

Be aware of your spine.  Be aware of correct positioning and correct posture because that is being responsible for your own health and wellbeing and encourages others to take the same precautions.

I am booked on a CPD course in July 2018 covering Postural Correction (hosted by the Federation of Holistic Therapists) and I am really looking forward to applying my new learning and skills to my existing work as a Massage Therapist.

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