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@ Seminar at Albany Memorial Hospital for Diabetes Support Group

I offered the first seminar at Albany Memorial Hospital (AMH) for the Diabetes Support Group on June 5, 2013 from 6 to 7.30pm. This was set up by Marcy Pickert form AMH Diabetes Education Group. Attended by total 15 adults –  either diabetes patients or their family members. A set of my key handouts (1) was distributed to every participant. 

Scanned images of the Feedback Forms

Summary of the Feedback

This seminar is …

  • Very useful – 11
  • Useful – 3
  • Somewhat useful – 1

I will use this technique for my (concern) 

  • Agitated moments, Sleeping.
  • Help with sleep & Relaxation (Control less worries).
  • Insomnia, Relieving stressful situation, Helping with stress at work.
  • To help me fall asleep faster.
  • Sleeplessness, Sporadic or interrupted sleep.
  • Try to get up at a reasonable hour in the morning.
  • Work, Relax when facing a new or difficult task at work.
  • Relaxation.
  • Stress management and arguing less, Stop and think.
  • Stress and losing control.
  • High blood pressure, Anxiety and frustration of dealing with diabetes.
  • Relieve chronic pain for my hands. Pinched ulnar nerve in Mar 2010. Hands have not been normal since then.
  • To cool off after getting fired up.

Comments about the seminar 

  • Very relaxing.
  • Interesting relaxation technique (s).
  • I am looking forward to the results.
  • Speak lower as I was getting too relaxed.
  • You were very well understood. Demonstrations were useful. These should be given to high school students especially scholar athletes who need rest.
  • Very well presented.
  • Very enlightening – It shall work.
  • Rather repetitive techniques are common knowledge but presenter was very enthusiastic.
  • Very friendly and welcoming. One hardly thinks of managing such a basic process. But I will try diligently. He reminds me of Feldenkrais.
  • Interesting. No microphone.
(1) Documents for download – All handouts

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* I was never so calm before

Feedback from a woman who attended series of my classes. She has chronic mood disturbances and taking medication. She has been practicing  ‘Focusing on breathing’ (1) mostly at bedtime along with some complementary practices. Her recent feedback –

“My mind is a lot calmer. I have never been so calm before. I have been talking very balanced with my family members. The diet changes you suggested have helped me a lot.”

(1) ‘Focusing on breathing’

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* I am thrilled at my progress

Here is the remarkable feedback from a practitioner who attended 7 of my classes over last 4 months. It is reproduced verbatim, followed by other comments she made during the classes.

“I would like to start by saying that I am a retired hair dresser of 35 years of experience. I have diabetes, high blood pressure, anxiety, over weight and a lot of other issues.

I was referred to CS (Suryanarayana Chennapragada) by a diabetes educator, of all the people. I know it sounds strange but she completely understood when I told her that I had seen many dietitians over many years, that there wasn’t much she could help me with, if I did not put my knowledge of diets to work. I knew portion sizes, sugars and all of it. I was wrong. She did help me by listening to what I said. She then asked if I was open minded about talking to a man who had helped her in her life. I don’t know if it was the right time to make a change in me or if it was something else but whatever be the reason, I will be forever grateful to both of them.

CS began by explaining that if you do not give yourself time to breathe, you can not heal inside or out. Your brain needs oxygen in order to deal with life’s every day problems. He gave me some breathing techniques, as explained in his web site to try (1) and asked me to do them while I was in his office. He left me in the room alone to try them. I was amazed that I could sit still long enough to do this but I did and felt pretty good. I continued to see him on a weekly basis. I started in Oct 2011. It is now Feb 2012. I am now going every 2 weeks and I am thrilled at the progress I have made. So are my  husband and daughter.

I am not nearly as stressed about everything. I have learned that I do not have to take care of every one else in my life. I am not responsible for other people’s choices, only mine. I now understand the power of focusing on breathing. My family noticed that I am now calmer. I smile more and I laugh. I now enjoy taking a vacation. I do matter. CS gives you small things to try and that bring big results. I know that it will take time for me, to complete my journey but as CS says “Small Steps”.  I say to every one that will listen “BREATHE”.

To CS, thank you for doing what you do so well and by that I mean CARE about all of us.”

Some more developments she shared during the classes –

  • She was suffering from severe insomnia for many years, not able to sleep for more than 3 – 4 hours a night, that too a very disturbed sleep, in spite of taking strong sleep medication ‘AMBIEN’. Now she is able to sleep undisturbed, for at least 5 hours while still taking the same medication. She has now dared to asked her doctor to switch to half the dosage of the same medication. She is now determined to try this lower dose, bearing all the disturbances.
  • When she visited her endocrinologist doctor recently, the doctor spontaneously commented “You were somewhere, for past many years. You are now a different person”
  • Before practicing these techniques, she had severe anxiety whenever she had to undergo a treatment at her dentist’s office. She had to take an anti-anxiety medicine, to be able to go through the visit. But her recent visit to the dentist was all done without any such medication. She was herself surprised how this happened for the first time!
  • Before these practices, she was a compulsively controlling person. She wanted things done yesterday and her way! Now she lets others manage their affairs, as they like. She does not feel the compulsive urge to control them any more.
  • When she organized a birth day party recently, she was calmly interacting with people, unlike her usual self. This change was noticed by her family  members and they commented about it.
  • Her goal is now to “get off the insulin”. She is hopeful she can do it eventually.
  • She is surprised that she is now cooking smaller quantities and eating smaller portions. Her husband is surprised at this remarkable change.
  • Having made a beginning with going to the YMCA when her daughter gave her the gift of trial membership, she enrolled herself in the Y and going to the gym 3 days a week. She walks on the track every time she goes there. She is happy with meeting many other like minded persons there.
  • Due to more awareness and self control, she stopped snacking on chips at night. Instead she eats an apple.

Her previous feedback
My family  can’t believe the change in my attitude.

(1) How can I focus on breathing?

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