Our desire is to educate the whole student rather than focusing solely on traditional academic disciplines.
This teen guidebook is one of a kind! Its principles deliver a basic foundation of psychological and social concepts and ideas that have existed for ages. If you have a teenager or work with teens, this is a great little investment for their future. These principles are not taught in school, they are taught in life.
Have you ever asked yourself this question? If so, you would have to address the physical, mental, social and spiritual aspects of yourself.
These formthe 5 Pillars of Education
It is vital that we understand the workings of the mind in order for there to be harmony internally and externallyLearn More
There are many factors that influence the physical health of a student but we must first seek to educate students on ways to promote optimal physical health.Learn More
Students need to be empowered with the knowledge on how to resolve conflict and communicate effectively.
We know the importance of finances in terms of meeting our needs in life. Unfortunately most students do not have a clue how money works in life because it was never taught to them in school.Learn More
Many great leaders throughout history have discovered the importance of faith and the power it has to transform lives.Learn More
The inspiration for the website was derived from a desire to educate the whole student rather than focusing solely on traditional academic disciplines. For example, students are required to enroll in a physical education or health course, but not classes specific to mental health and building healthy relationships. Two very important ways to look at this is through intrapersonal and interpersonal relationships. Intrapersonal has to do with the individual mind or self. Interpersonal relates to relationships and communication between people
Mercury and Mental Health Disorders
What I am about to say may seem shocking to some but obvious to the many who have suffered greatly at the hands of chemical substances. We are all aware of the harmful chemicals that we are exposed to everyday from the toxins in the air to the toxins in our drinking water. But have you ever wondered if toxins can cause mental and emotional issues?
As a clinical psychologist, I have spent decades of my life in research study, and I am here to tell you that you cannot separate the mind from the body. It is impossible! I personally believe that we are 3 part beings- spirit, mind and body and what affects one affects the others.
Furthermore, I will say that I entered into the field of psychology because I was on a quest for my own personal healing and at one point in my life, I thought I could help save the world through the use of medication. What a grandiose belief! Thank goodness, I no longer hold that view.
I have experienced over 20 years of my life heavily reliant on prescription drugs (antidepressants and anti-anxiety medications) primarily used to cope with the psychological symptoms that I was having. I remember first experiencing these symptoms at a very young age beginning sometime around the sixth grade.
The panic attacks and phobias began during my high school years, along with the broken relationships and extreme social anxiety that I experienced. I would have described myself as an extremely timid young girl whose doctor might have labeled “neurotic and sickly.”
Even though it would take a book to detail all my experiences growing up, I will, in short, describe the major lessons that I learned in the process.
I learned that experience trumps education and the more that you tell your story, the greater the validation by those people that have suffered as you have suffered.
Don’t misunderstand me, I do not underestimate the value of a good education but sometimes what you learned along the way may not be totally accurate. This is where one must be open minded and teachable.
I have always had a curious mind and that is what led me to some of the things that I discovered.
Back to the mercury and mental health disorder connection. I will say that many years of study taught me the importance of assessment and most of us would agree that science matters!
Recently in my research, I came across something that totally began to change the way that I viewed mental health. Through my experience, I had discovered that belief systems were extremely powerful and would affect how we felt and behaved. Furthermore, I knew that there was a direct connection between mental illness and nutritional deficiency. Nevertheless, what I overlooked was the strong connection between mental illness and heavy metal toxicity, particularly mercury.
In my healing journey, I discovered something that I had never heard throughout my years of education. It was regarding an occupational syndrome called the “Mad Hatter’s Disease.” You may have heard the term because of the character in Alice in Wonderland. Honestly, I have never seen the movie so I cannot attest to his behavioral characteristics.
As I delve into the study of this disease, I discovered that it was a condition developed by hat makers, in France during the early 1800’s, brought on by their continuous exposure to mercury.
According to the following video, Mad Hatters Disease, you can see how the exposure to mercury was shown to cause a variety of emotional and neurological symptoms.
With my knowledge of mental health disorders, in addition to my own personal experience, I can clearly see the link between mercury toxicity in the following categories of “mental disorders.”
Anxiety Disorders (Panic disorder, Social Anxiety, OCD, PTSD, Phobias, etc.)
Mood Disorders (Depression, etc.)
Bipolar Disorder (formerly called Manic Depression)
Schizophrenia (Paranoid, etc.)
Eating Disorders (Anorexia and Bulimia)
Somatoform Disorders (Hypochondriasis, etc.)
Personality Disorders (Borderline personality, Antisocial personality, Avoidant personality, Dependent personality, etc.)
This list shows some of the more common mental disorders that could be directly linked to mercury toxicity. This obviously does not include all of the neurological disorders that are believed to be linked to mercury toxicity as well.
Over the years, there seems to be mounting evidence between autism and mercury vaccines although as we all know, it is highly controversial. On the other hand, there are many people, because of their own personal experience, will never be persuaded that vaccines do not harm our health.
I am not writing this blog to alarm people, I am only writing it because I am passionate about mental health and I want to empower people to take charge of their own health. Once we become aware of truth, I believe that it is our personal responsibility to educate others. Knowledge is power and has the ability to save lives.
Although I received a master’s degree in clinical psychology, I soon discovered that my real passion was to teach, both at the high school and college level. My 15 years of teaching experience taught me that there were many factors influential to learning and knowing what I know now, I often wonder about the effect heavy metal toxicity had upon some of my past students. Today, I question, what impact could mercury have on a student’s ability to actively listen, concentrate, comprehend and behave properly?
I personally witnessed many students who struggled with attention deficit disorder, anxiety disorders, depression, addictions, etc. to the point that they could no longer remain in school. Because we don’t know any better, we quickly assume that the student’s behavioral issues are the result of poor parenting and not biologically based.
Learning is key and if mercury toxicity interferes with a student’s ability to process thought rationally, then we now have a whole new issue to address.
In my strong opinion, the health issues that most people deal with today, with the exception of faulty thinking, are based primarily upon 2 sources, nutritional deficiency and chemical toxicity. If you have not seen the documentary “The Beautiful Truth,” check it out on Youtube. It is an eye opening video! The good news about our health, both physically and emotionally, is that we can reverse many ailments simply by eating healthier, correcting deficiencies with nutritional supplementation and detoxification.
The effects of mercury on health clearly depend upon several factors including individual sensitivity, length of exposure, sources of contact (inhalation, ingestion, and dermal). Although there are many sources of mercury exposure in the environment, I believe that the most harmful effects come from what society personally can control. Those primary sources are the following:
Dental Amalgam Fillings (aka silver tooth fillings)
Seafood, particularly shellfish and large fish (tuna, swordfish, shark, etc.)
There have been a series of small clinical studies performed and several books written to support the link between mercury and illness. Because of my passion to eliminate the stigma of mental illness, I advocate that more clinical studies be done to put the controversy to rest.
From an environmental perspective, you may wonder if I believe that mental illness is primarily the result of heavy metal poisoning? I will only say this, the influence of toxic chemicals (mercury, lead, pesticides, prescription drugs, OTC drugs, food additives, etc.) certainly have a great impact upon the way we heal, both emotionally and physically. The body is designed to heal itself with a healthy immune system. Unfortunately, toxins in the body compromise the immune system.
Once our ability to naturally process thought is adversely affected, every part of our lives (emotionally, mentally, physically, socially and spiritually) can be negatively impacted.
In conclusion, I will leave you with this thought. It is one thing, as an adult, to make decisions regarding our own personal health but it is quite another when those decisions affect the lives of children. Let us all advocate for a brighter future!
For more information about the effects of mercury, check out the World Mercury Project and the advocacy of Robert F. Kennedy Jr.
Mind and Body: Corresponding Parts
As a psychology professor, I have taught for years regarding mind/emotion and its effect on the body and vice versa. Remarkably though, most of my students still had a tough time distinguishing between the brain and the mind. First let’s be clear, THE BRAIN AND THE MIND ARE NOT THE SAME!
We have been conditioned to believe that our minds (thoughts, emotions, will, memories, perceptions, etc.) are in the brain but research is discovering that, in fact, our thoughts exist throughout our bodies particularly in our center (gut). There is clear research indicating the gut brain connection.
Hippocrates once said that “all disease originates in the gut” and all means both physical and mental. Furthermore, research shows that there is a link between gut bacteria and our emotions and thoughts. Studies done with mice have shown that gut bacteria affect thoughts, emotions, food choices and even the PERSONALITY!
Until recently, most medical doctors in the health industry have been primarily focused on the physical aspects of our health. Most physicians have not been trained on the psychological connection to the body. Within the past few years there has been a big shift toward holistic health because it deals with the whole person, not just the physical body.
Patients are beginning to educate their medical doctors about their mental and emotional health as it relates to their physical health. For most physicians, the only treatment they know comes in the form of a pill or surgery. People are needing answers and therefore they are reaching out to their primary doctors for emotional support. It is no secret that general practitioners (those not trained in mental health) have been writing prescriptions for antidepressants and anti anxiety meds to the masses for years. The question then becomes, how is it affecting the physical health of the patient?
More people are discovering that the answer does not come from a quick fix medication that often adds more problems to the mix. I can personally attest to this. To take the antidepressant or not to take the antidepressant, that is the question. Every person needs to decide that for themselves without judgement! As a society though, I believe that we are at a crossroads. Do we continue to listen to the advice of the medical industry or do we take matters into our own hands and become our own physicians? Many people are already choosing to do what is best for them. We all need to do what works for our own health and the health of our loved ones.
Diet and Mental Health
The evidence is there and if you are among the many that have begun to change your diet and eat more plant based food (fruits, vegetables, whole grains, etc.) you have most likely experienced the benefits on your emotions. Plant based foods affect our moods! Therefore, it doesn’t take a scientist to see that there is a clear connection between food sources and our emotions. Understanding how this occurs is another subject.
Influence of Gut Bacteria
In my research studies regarding the effect of gut bacteria on personality, I came across something that was very interesting. According to PANDAS (Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorders Associated with Streptococcal Infections)
The disorder occurs when strep triggers a misdirected immune response results in inflammation on a child’s brain. In turn, the child quickly begins to exhibit life changing symptoms such as OCD, anxiety, tics, personality changes, decline in math and handwriting abilities, sensory sensitivities, restrictive eating, and more.
This information really got my attention and it probably just got yours. Personally, I know that it is true because of my own experience with anxiety/depression and the constant cycle of my streptococcal bacterial infections. This in turn led to a constant string of antibiotics which ultimately hurt my body more than it helped. People are now asking, “what else do we use for infection besides antibiotics?” Many have discovered the healing power of plant based foods, herbs and essential oils to eliminate infection in the body. (I am not a medical doctor, I am a clinical psychologist who specializes in education on natural medicine). I can only tell you what I have discovered through my own personal knowledge.
I had a very interesting experience about 5 years ago while recovering from a gastrointestinal (GI) bleed that landed me in ICU for 2 days. Shortly after getting out of the hospital, I was taking a triple antibiotic cocktail used to get rid of the h pylori infection in my intestines. I basically had such a reaction from the antibiotics that every time that I ate, I had to run to the bathroom. It worried me because I could not keep anything in my stomach for a few days and this prompted me to seek the advice of a pharmacist. He referred me to a probiotic and after taking a few pills, I noticed an immediate change. I began to keep the food in my stomach.
What was rather bizarre about that experience had to do with my mental status. I felt a sense of overwhelming freedom and wellbeing that I cannot remember feeling since I was a child. I had always struggled with a sense of apprehension in some form and for a few days, that feeling of worry and uneasiness was completely gone! Obviously, the feeling came back but it really got me thinking about what the gut bacteria had to do with my emotions. It was an eye-opening experience!
CHANGE OUR THINKING, CHANGE OUR LIVES
If we are struggling to get well, both physically and emotionally, it is going to require us to change the way in which we view mental health. There are root causes to our health issues! I have always been confused by the notion of “mental illness” which led me to analyze my own question,“how come there are no ‘cures’ for mental illness but there are ‘cures’ for physical illness?” Think about it, is that even true? If that were true, why are we still getting sick from “illness?” Dis-ease is dis-ease, it doesn’t matter whether you call it physical or mental disease…it’s the same thing!
There is such a mentality, particularly in this country, that chooses to separate everything, label them and put them in a box. We need to wake up to the fact that the mind and the body are interconnected! What affects one, affects the other! It’s like having a person with “multiple personality disorder” commit a crime, which person do you send to jail? (We have changed the name to Dissociative Identity Disorder because we realized how silly it was to label someone as different people in the same body). It is one person with one mind, simply that!
As you can clearly see, I am very passionate about holistic health because it affects our quality of life and our happiness. When our health suffers, everything and everybody around us suffers. Let’s get on a mission to advocate for the truth about health, every aspect of it!
The future generations need to know the truth about health and given the hope that healing is possible. For most of us, it’s a journey but we know that we are on the right path!
Anxiety and depression
Albert Einstein once said that “we cannot solve our problems with the same thinking that we used when we created them.” I have yet to meet someone who has never struggled with anxiety and/or depression at some point in their lives. It is high time that we get rid of the stigma that keeps so many people suffering in silence. It is time that we changed our thinking about psychological issues.
I decided to write this blog about anxiety and depression because I am highly passionate about helping others to both understand and overcome mental/emotional struggles. I want people to know that there is hope and I do not believe that we were created to continue to suffer with debilitating dis-eases or “disorders.” I hesitate to even call them psychological disorders because I really oppose labels although I understand the purpose for them.
I consider myself an expert in the field of mental health not just because I earned a master’s degree in clinical psychology but mostly because of what I have personally experienced and the tremendous amount of research that I have done to help myself. I understand what it feels like to have debilitating depression, panic attacks and phobias, that years ago nearly left me bound within the physical walls of my home.
You may be wondering why I have entitled this blog “the misaligned man.” Have you ever been in excruciating physical pain and went to a chiropractor for an adjustment, and afterward, felt like a new person? Well if you have experienced this, you will understand that your body was out of alignment and it needed to be put back in proper working order.
Our physical bodies have certain needs in order to function at the optimal level. Those needs involve things like deep sleep, clean water and air, proper nutrition, hormonal balance, etc. Often times, our body is simply deficient in certain nutrients and once these nutrients are restored to the body, we will begin feeling much better. I truly believe that there are nutritional deficiencies that can create all kinds of emotional issues like increased anxiety and low mood.
We must first educate ourselves and begin to understand how certain things function in our bodies. For example, our endocrine system, which is made up of glands like the pituitary, thyroid, adrenals and reproductive organs (ovaries and testes) have major roles to play in how we feel. If any one of these glands are not functioning properly, this can create all sorts of havoc with our metabolism, moods and sleep schedules. (I am not a medical doctor but as a psychology professor, you cannot teach about the mind without teaching about the body…they are connected!).
Mind Body Connection
Just as our physical body must be in proper alignment to function optimally, the same holds true for our minds or mental/emotional body. A major eye opener for me happened about 5 years ago when I landed in ICU for a GI (gastrointestinal) bleed caused by aspirin and the h-pylori bacteria in my intestines.
While in the hospital, one of the attending physicians came in to check on me. I only saw this female Asian doctor one time and she walked over to my bed and looked me straight in my eyes and said, “do you know what your problem is?” I was a little caught off guard as I curiously replied “no?” She said, “IT IS EMOTIONAL!” What in the world was this lady talking about? I clearly had physical symptoms (gastritis, diverticulitis, h-pylori bacterial infection, food sensitivities etc.).
Interestingly, you will likely not hear a medical doctor in our Western hospitals talk to you about emotional problems unless they cannot find anything physically wrong with you. Also, I don’t believe that it was a coincidence that this doctor was of Asian descent, most likely having some knowledge of Eastern medical practices.
Since that time, I really began to change my perspective about my history of depression and anxiety and the childhood traumas that had affected my physical body in such profound ways. I can remember having shingles when I was in grade school after the sudden death of my father. I can also remember my mother taking me to doctors because of stomach and bowel issues but they never could find anything wrong with me. I literally thought I was “crazy.” Then the physical symptoms would eventually develop into full blown panic attacks and phobias. (By the way, I despise the word “crazy” because it is often used to refer to people with emotional problems, precisely why talking about mental health is so difficult).
Since my experience with the Asian doctor, I have intently researched how trauma and thought patterns affect the emotional and physical body. There are several interesting discoveries that I have made along the way regarding my own healing. This is precisely what has led me to develop a holistic model of education that addresses all aspects of the person: physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually.
I know that any topic of a spiritual nature can be a controversial issue for a lot of people and I am not in a place to judge anyone’s spiritual beliefs, I only know what I have personally experienced. Many people believe that science and the spiritual do not mix but if you do the research, there is increasing scientific evidence that show the benefits of faith and prayer/meditation. Benefits that show how it can help people with physical ailments like high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease and a compromised immune system. The practice of meditation has also been shown to help people focus and become more mindful and aware of the present, which can have all kinds of emotional benefits.
As you can clearly see, there are various distinct parts of us that are interconnected and affect our lives in so many ways. When we feel good physically, our thoughts tend to be more positive. The reverse is also true, when we focus on positive thoughts, we feel good. Furthermore, when we focus on loved ones and the beauty all around us in nature, we tend to feel more grateful and gratitude makes our world so much better!
I will continue to write more about this topic as it is central to all that WAY Education holds to be true. E-books will soon be available through our website @ wayeducationservices.com. Our focus is on educating the public and providing holistic literature and resources on health and wellness.