God writes the Gospel not in the Bible alone,

but also on trees,

and in flowers and clouds and stars.

~Martin Luther

 An excerpt from Release Your Obsession with Your PHONE: Heal from the Inside Out, coming soon….

Do you ever question if prayer and meditation really work? If so, you’re not alone. Many wonder if there’s value to such activities.

Well, think about it, prayer and meditation are undertaken with good intentions to start and enhance your mind, body, and soul — treating the whole person.

And when you treat the whole person, one feels better mentally, physically and spiritually.  

Many religions require various combinations of meditation and prayer. As a cradle Catholic, I practiced meditation and prayer, starting in my formative years. When praying the rosary, it’s not uncommon to go into a meditative-type trance, removing the fears and worries by focusing on the prayer.

During my early recovery years from an eating disorder, I attended a Twelve-Step program that practiced the art of prayer and meditation, which brought instant relief by taking the focus off the disease and placing it on the healing and recovery.

I practiced cycle breathing (one breath in to the count of four; then, hold the breath to the count of four; last, release breath to the count of four) along with the Lamaze method preparing for childbirth when I was pregnant with my son Benjamin—thirty-four years ago.

The Lamaze technique, also known as the psychoprophylactic method, began as a prepared childbirth technique. It was an alternative to medical intervention during childbirth. Anyone who knows me, or reads my books, knows I’m not a fan of needles and natural is always my preferred method. So, I breathed and prayed my way through childbirth—a combination of meditation and prayer. It worked!

In both Twelve-Step and the Lamaze technique, the transformation in me was life changing. I attended different platforms, such as Twelve-Step and Meditation circles. I learned food addicts, or as some like to say, compulsive eaters, committed to their recovery, understand they must engage in daily prayer and meditation as part of their healing.

In Lamaze, I practiced meditation, imagining a natural and painless birth, and prayed the rosary in my mind over and over along with cycle breathing. And I got exactly what I set out for—a natural, painless childbirth. Since, I’ve hypnotized many women to experience a natural childbirth with joy, not fear, through all the above methods.

I learned these techniques are healing regardless of the situation, whether it’s addiction, traumas or heck, even a phone addiction. Yep, you read that right, phone addiction, there is such a thing.

Phones can be addictive if over used. And we all are into our phones.

So how would prayer and meditation heal the phone addict or any unhealthy compulsive behavior? Well, for starters, we human beings are spiritual beings.

Prayer or turning to a Higher Source ignites and connects to our spiritual self, hence can start the healing. And this healing includes addiction to certain foods, habits, drugs, alcohol and yes, even the phone obsession all lifted with a redirection of thoughts.

Plugging in Prayer and Meditation

And when we meditate on daily healing, practicing abstinence with vigilance, we can recover. Giving thanks and praise to our higher self every day continues to strengthen our recovery.

Dictionary.com defines prayer as a devout petition to God or an object of worship. It is a spiritual communion with God, or whatever we call that ultimate power. It is an appointed formula or sequence of words invented on the spot to be said either in public or in private.

Prayer may be heartfelt, but it can even be mechanical at first and still be effective.

I like to think of prayer as hanging out with the God of my choice and having a conversation about what is troubling me and what I need lifting from. As corny as that might sound, it’s powerful, leading to recovery regardless of the ailment.

The dictionary defines meditation as a continued or extended thought—a reflection and/or contemplation—a devout religious contemplation or spiritual introspection. Often there is a blurring between meditation and prayer, vine wrapped around vine, reaching up toward the same place: serenity.

Healing in Nature

Meditation performed in quiet, with no agenda, is a perfect start. In meditation, we spend some time in the spaciousness of not knowing. Some individuals meditate by using one word to concentrate on, while others hum one note, and still others focus on something to look at, such as a cloud or flower or even a spot on the wall.

Some will use a mantra, repeating it repeatedly.

Meditation is the act of embracing an open and inviting, void space in the mind. It’s the discovery of a corner of the mind, a quietness within the mind, a sanctuary, a resting place—paradise in the mind, a place of peace.

Every morning, without fail—beating the alarm—I awake to a choir of birds singing that the day has begun. I stretch and give thanks for the start of a fresh new day. After feeding my parrot Oliver and Swiss Shepherd Gracie—and downing a huge glass of water, I move out to the garage and open the garage door to welcome the morning breeze and witness the purple/yellow hues as the sun comes up over the palm trees against the backdrop of the Atlantic Ocean.

I breathe in the delicious scent only salt air offers, beginning my morning routine seated in meditation, start the process of cycle breathing, meditating through a repetition of prayers, thinking of nothing, and embracing everything. A little while after that, I begin my ten-minute rowing routine, working my entire body and then off for a long walk or bike ride near the ocean
I am now connected to my breath and my body: Let the day begin.

 Ocean Paradise

You can do this simple practice any way that works for you. My way may not be comfortable to you, so move it around until it fits. You’ll see the benefits immediately when you work in a prayer/meditation practice daily.

A Healthy Way to Plug-In

Listening to inspirational podcasts, gifting a positive message, is another way to get centered. There are many meditation and prayer podcasts, along with inspirational messages.

Plugging into inspirational messages on the phone is far different from checking likes and views or news on your smartphone. It’s relaxing the thought with positive feed.

While out exercising, I make my way up the bridge to witness a spectacular view of the ocean and intercostal waterway. I look to nature for my sustenance.

When cycling I ride along the ocean shoreline—I may switch to praying the rosary, going into a meditative trance-like state praying for patience, for my family, my patients, my students and/or whatever other concerns I send for Divine guidance.

By the time I pedal back, I am invigorated and ready for anything that comes my way.

I am centered.

We can conduct meditation in stillness sitting in a position or movement meditation such as cycling or walking, etc. It’s a choice. For me, strong spirituality replaced the intoxication that came from food and now the phone.

A closer relationship with the Universe rather than a focus on how many likes or views I receive leads to recovery.

Constant communication with The Divine is our serenity. Our higher source is a powerful presence that is with us uninterrupted. We succumb to cravings, and then beat ourselves up for our lack of “willpower,” not realizing the problem isn’t lack of willpower, but perhaps lack of God power!

A Higher Connection

               Connecting to Nature

Our energy sinks to severe lows without this higher connection. Our self-worth and self-esteem soon follow. A strong spirituality is the energy that fuels us and keeps us sane. Recovery comes about through an understanding, a power for good that works in us in unique and personal ways.

The beauty of prayer is that it’s personal. There’s no right way to pray, and there’s no wrong way—just your way. You can talk, sing, sit in silence, dance, cry, run, embrace nature, hug a baby, kiss a puppy, and/or watch a butterfly swirl around a daffodil—all in the name of prayer.

Prayer lifts the soul. It can change your life anywhere, any time—alone, in quiet, or in the middle of a room full of people. You can be rich, poor, belong to a church, temple, synagogue, or mosque, or sit alone in a field that stretches out as far as the eye can see. Our higher source is everywhere—within us and around us.

Perhaps you’re thinking, ‘Why do you say prayer works? I pray and nothing good ever happens to me or for me.’ If you’re praying without receiving pure uplifting joy, gratitude for life, and a heartfelt happiness, you are `praying amiss.’ It could be you’re blocked by technology overload—sunk in the mire of a mobile device addiction. It reminds me of the saying, ‘You are what you eat,’ but in this case it’s ‘you are what you watch and listen to’. Let’s take it a step further: `You are what you pray.’

This is not to encourage self-condemnation, as that’s not the point at all. It’s about tapping into the delight of connection to our higher energy and the wonderful people who surround us.

Lucinda’s Connection

Lucinda, huffing and puffing, ear buds clasped in her ears—muffled sounds of Christian music escaping—came into my office drenched from pedaling her bicycle to her therapy session.

Lucinda had borderline intelligence, to the point of being misdiagnosed in childhood with mental retardation. Yet, although she wasn’t book smart, this patient of mine understood phenomena that far exceeded the insight of many of those in academia. She was instinctually intelligent, rather than book smart.

Lucinda knew things. During many sessions, I sat dumbfounded, just listening to her speak intuitively from her heart, from her spirit. Yes, she went to church and knew all the traditional prayers, but something deeper was going on inside her.

Lucinda lived for the moment, not for yesterday or in fear of tomorrow. She laughed heartily and could be her authentic self—no holds barred.

Lucinda didn’t desire for something ‘solid’ to believe in, because she believed knowingly. She wasn’t asking for proof or bemoaning the life she lived. She spoke of Jesus as if he was her best friend, as if they had daily chats together.

One day in session Lucinda announced she was going home to Him soon, with no fear or sadness. As far as I could tell, Lucinda, 38 years old, was healthy and fit.

Lucinda lived in a small, closed-in garage made into a studio apartment living off monthly government checks and worked a few days in a grocery store stocking shelves or carting groceries to patrons’ cars. The little space she lived and her job brought her great joy. She saw the good in people.

Lucinda lived her life as a prayer.

Although Lucinda came to me for psychotherapy, I learned by working with her that psychology without prayer was pointless. I learned, too, that she was the teacher, and I was the student. Her mind was open and uncluttered with this rule and that rule. She loved freely and wholly. She lived fully and well. And she died in her sleep just as she told me she would.

What does your prayer life look like? Do you believe in prayer? What about meditation?

Thank you for spending time with me and my thoughts throughout these pages. I hope my words lit your excitement to become your best self for you. I look forward to sharing my next book with you on how to Release your Obsession with Your PHONE: Heal from the Inside Out.  God bless you… and your journey through this life and all that awaits beyond…

Thank you for being a part of the reading blog forum of this blog. If you have something you’d like to say, I’d love to hear it. YOU are important and your words need to be heard. I’m here for you. Simply scroll all the way down to the comments to post your thoughts.

To learn more on recovery from food addiction, eating disorders, weight issues, dieting, aging, money, and soon, Your PHONE, please check out my Release Your Obsession Series. 

Stay tuned. You never know where my mind will wander…

Hugs to you, I care!
Dr. Lisa
To learn more on recovery from food addiction, eating disorders, weight issues, dieting, aging, and money, please check out my Release Your Obsession Series.

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*Weightcontroltherapy.com, founded in 2001, offers the public an opportunity to explore  why you eat what you eat and to better understand why food can cause your moods to swing, your cravings to soar, your weight to increase, your self-esteem to plummet, and your fatigue to rage. I blog posts to share experiences, light the flame of hope for all to conquer their poor relationship physically, emotionally, and spiritually to food.


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