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+ “I am blessed by your counsel and friendship”- a client

Anna (name changed) in her seventies attended four of my classes. One day she came to our office in my absence and left an envelope. It had a ‘thank you’ card and some payment. The payment was far beyond what she owed me for the used books I sold her in the last class (1). Her note in the card reads –

“Dear C S
Enclosed is my payment for the books. The extra money is what I wish to give you, for your therapy sessions. While you may not have a counseling degree, it’s no matter. You are a wise, intuitive, compassionate and warm human being. You and I know ‘the degree’ doesn’t always equal quality and common sense. You possess both (2). I am blessed by your counsel and friendship.”

I feel humbled by her appreciation and unexpected payment.

(1) Her son in his forties Joseph (name changed) died under unbelievable circumstances. As shared by Anna:
Joseph separated from his wife and shared the custody of their five year old daughter. He was under stress, having been fired from his job when he reported to the management about discrimination at the work place.  Anna visited him and granddaughter in Minnesota. One day, Joseph was driving with Anna and family in the back seat. For an unknown reason, Joseph showed his middle finger to another driver (5).  The other driver followed them in his truck. When they both stopped at the next red light, the other driver jumped out of his truck with an ax, smashed the rear screen of their car, pulled out Joseph out and badly hurt him. The police arrived promptly and took the other driver away.

After the near death experience, Joseph was devastated. He thought that his having a puny body was the cause for his humiliation. He resolved not to let anyone humiliate him again. He bought a gun and always carried it with him. Anna realized his acute stress and tried her best to convince him to seek therapy. But he did not like to do that.

One day, Joseph and his ex-wife were in a store parking lot, exchanging the custody of their daughter. His ex took custody of their daughter and backing up her car, about to leave. An unknown car driver who was behind her, beeped, to caution her. Joseph was watching the scene from his car, parked a few spaces away. Apparently, he misunderstood that the other driver was harassing his ex-wife and daughter. He jumped out his car with his gun, fatally shot the innocent stranger and himself.

(2) The circumstances which led her to my attend my counselling classes:
Anna came to my seminar for NAMI Rensselaer County members in March 2014 and liked the technique (3). She enrolled for three of my Meditation classes at Venture Inward in Nov 2016, but did not show up after the first class (4). When I called her in Jan 2017 to inquire, she told me about the tragic death of her son. I could hear her crying over the phone. I advised her to seek help from a counselor. On a follow up call, I came to know she was not inclined to seek a counselor. I then invited her to come to my solo classes, as I owed her 2 classes anyway.
(3) NAMI Rensselaer County: National Alliance for Mental Illness
(4) Venture Inward
(5) Middle finger – Wiki page

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* Courage to take the decision

Let me know your own experience with this practice. It will be posted without your name. 

  • This is the feedback from a woman who attended two of my classes. She was in distress due to her husband’s insensitive behavior. She used to be submissive to her husband like a door mat. After enduring this for many years, she felt drained and reached a breaking point. She was informally practicing ‘focusing on breathing’ for some time, based on my hand outs (1). Now she wanted to intensify her practice and come out of her distress. She was already seeing a  counselor.  Her goal was to become assertive with her husband. She attended two of my classes.  One week after the first class, she gave this feedback –

“ I think the breathing helped me face a big decision I was afraid to make. It gave me the courage to face what I didn’t want to face. I made the decision and moved out of my home, away from my husband, for now. I’m not sure of the future but my heart told me, this was the right move for now. This is a very hard time in my life and I’m happy to have this skill to help me through. The breathing is helping me stay calm. ”

This is the first feedback of its kind.

(1) How to enjoy quality sleep and conquer insomnia
How to be calm Anywhere, Anytime

Updates

March 12, 2013:“I’m doing okay. Still using the breathing techniques and doing yoga. I’m feeling much better and even a sense of peace, some days.”

Related articles
My articles on ‘Relationships’
The ‘court room’ treatment for stressful thoughts: An effective treatment for your stressful thoughts that repeatedly pop into the mind. The client referred to in this post used this technique on her own, after I introduced it to her by enacting a court scene in my class, picking one stressful thought. She could effectively counter the feeling of guilt she inflicted by  herself and also by the one sided comments of her controlling sister who showed lot of sympathy for her husband but absolutely no concern for her.

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Parent page: Benefits for Mind, Body and Relationships

* I lost 30 pounds in last 9 months and gained many other benefits

Feedback from one of my clients who attended 16 of my classes over last one year.

” I have been seeing C.S.(Suryanarayana Chennapragada) for all my health problems, since last one year. So far, I have seen the benefits such as:

  • I lost 30lbs. since last September (in nine months).
  • I have been eating a lot more healthy food than ever before, with a no red meat, a lot of fruits and vegetables.
  • My self-esteem has gotten much better and my marriage benefited from the counseling C.S. has given me.
  • I suffer from mixed connective tissue disease (Lupus) due to which I have a lot of problems when the weather changes. Due the diet changes I have made, I seem to have less pain in my muscles than I did before, on rainy days.
  • Practicing the breathing technique has enabled me to calm myself down whenever I get stressed out. I deal with problems better now than before.

I started seeing C.S. originally to quit smoking but had to tackle all these problems first before I could take on that problem. I plan to also try and quit smoking in the next year as one of my goals with C.S.

I would recommend counseling with C.S., to anyone, with weight, stress or health problems.”

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Please send your comments through the ‘ABOUT – Contact’ page.

Related pages
How can I focus on breathing?
Books on nutrition

* My family life has changed dramatically

Feedback from a woman who attended seven of my classes (1) over last 4 months. She had several mind, body problems.

“Since I have started ‘focusing on breathing’ practices (2) with C.S (Suryanarayana Chennapragada) in October 2011, my family life has changed dramatically.  My daughter and I now talk on a daily basis without yelling at one another. My husband has calmed down his attitude around me. They both say it is because of the person I have become.  I am much more relaxed now and take things as they come, instead of  worrying about things.

My back pain (3) has gone away.  I am now exercising and get energy from doing it on a daily basis.  I have even signed up for a nutritional class and a Zumba class.

I am sleeping much better than I use to, without taking sleeping pills.   I also have started to eat healthier than I was before.   Basically I am a much calmer person with more energy, in the last four months, thanks to C.S. He has also given me good counseling advice better than any counselor I have ever seen in the past.   I would refer anyone to C.S. to help them with many factors in life. He is a very smart and caring man.”

(1) Seminars and classes 
(2) How can I focus on  breathing?
(3) How to relieve chronic pains by ‘Focusing on breathing’ and gentle stretching?

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Please send your comments through the ‘ABOUT – Contact’ page.