Getting Like, Totally, Unstuck

So about this Sunday: are you still on the fence?

That is, stuck?  Well, that fence looks uncomfortable!  Sign up to join us, with caveat below!

In case you are just tuning in, this workshop is called, Getting Unstuck, and it's 9:45 till 1, 5th of November.  You'll have 3 of us presenting in turn, each providing content and experiential so you are learning from different perspectives.

A few people have asked, "So am I going to be Unstuck, like, Forever?  Hahaha," they say, hopefully, "Maybe?"

Umm, no.

No quick fixes.  But the insights we'll be sharing have made a difference for our clients. 

Here's how you'll benefit from attending:

  • what stuckness is, and why it's a default for many of us
  • where to find balance among polarities
  • science of sensing; gain insights into your own behavior
  • risk trying something new -- safely!
  • anchoring new practices for flexibility and flow

And that's just my piece:  Cynthia and Rachel have their own bullet points!

Getting Unstuck: A Whole-Person Way Forward 


Sunday morning, November 5, 2017

9:45 am - 1:00 pm

Sign up here 

$60 payable online or at the door 

Location: event address provided when you sign up.

Learn ways of moving from feelings of stuckness into flow. Perspectives from Chinese medicine, somatic practice, and integral coaching.

We invite all of you here. 


Warm regards,

Cynthia Luna, integral coaching

Rachel Mefferd, L.Ac, acupuncturist

Suzanne Snijder van Wissenkerke, SEP



Wait-- What?! New Guidelines for Lower Back Ache

NYTimes: Lower Back Ache? Be Active and Wait It Out, New Guidelines Say 

This change is sure to get people talking. Opinions run strong when it comes to pain relief (just see the article's comments section!) Carried by the mainstream press, this topic will now make its way into all kinds of conversations about pain and addiction, pleasure and punishment.

I am optimistic about systemic change, toward a holistic view of care. But here's my big "however": Back pain is not just one thing. Pain anywhere is a message for us to attend to, and ask the body, "Hey, what's going on?" Sometimes pain corresponds directly with the area, sometimes the relationship to its source is mysterious. It can be devilishly difficult to figure out just what that message is. We have to keep listening, using all the tools available.

I've learned to not assume back pain is muscular. (Could be organic!) This idea doesn't always fly, when a client is convinced otherwise. So I leaven my approach with humor. Offer something that helps in the moment. Educate a bit, inviting opening to curiosity. Orient to what moves us along in time, together.

And I listen some more.

Abmp back
image from

Moving Anger Out from a Holding Pattern

Here's an interesting blog post about anger from a therapist named Robert Firestone.  Number one in his list of effects of denying or suppressing anger is somaticizing -- creating physical symptoms. 

"Holding back angry feelings creates tension, and this stress reaction plays a part in a wide range of psychosomatic ailments, such as headaches, hypertension, cardiovascular disease, and cancer."

Many of us have learned to pooh-pooh what may come along with anger that's held:  the constriction, the pain, the frustrating lack of momentum.   Ignoring it doesn't make it go away!    Among my bodywork clients are some whose hunched neck/shoulders are actually compromising their heart/lung functional capacity --- which compounds with anxiety as the heart races or "I can't breathe!"   For some, a holding pattern like this snowballs into a syndrome, a complex tangle of symptoms.  

To successfully address physical symptoms, my therapeutic approach will often integrate multiple elements of human experience: emotion, meaning, behavior, sensation, image.  Combining Somatic Experiencing with gentle bodywork is what I find most effective.

A few more thoughts about allowing anger to be part of the mix of feelings we experience:

1)    Feeling a feeling -- any feeling -- It's not right or wrong, it just is!   This is part of the job of our physical bodies.  When we sense a feeling, the body gets a message to move.  Toward something attractive, away if not attractive.  Checking in with where in your body might want to move right now is a great place to start.  For example, a nice breath out!  -- Aahhh! 

2)    Feeling an impulse to move is not the same as following through with aggressive actions!   To develop more impulse control, experiment with letting go of some control!   Sound counter-intuitive?  In a Somatic Experiencing session, we might explore feeling that edge between extreme-absolute-control and a-little-bit-of-movement.   

3)    What's the opposite of anger?  Again, not a right or wrong answer here, just an invitation to explore that for a moment, sitting away from your screen to feel whatever it is for you.     Give yourself enough time so that when you come back to a feeling of anger, there's this other feeling your body remembers as well.  Something to gently swing back to.



feeling like Eeyore no more

I started seeing Suzanne for fibromyalgia relief.  Her experience and techniques have been very helpful in reducing the muscle aches.  I was surprised at one session where something in my hip released.  From that time several months ago, to the present, my low level depression, what I called my “Eeyore -ness,” has vanished.   --  Kathryn BR

Breathing through the Holidays

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As holiday preparations escalate, anxiety stifles our breath --- dampening  enjoyment of festive gatherings.  Take this opportunity to find an inner oasis of calm in the swirl of the season. Discover spacious containment in the breath:  a resource that keeps flowing on beyond the New Year.  Continuing to explore bottom-up wellness, we’ll be using hands-on contact, restful play, and movement to invite learning.

1 pm - 3 pm Sunday 27 November at Claremont Yoga

204 N. Yale (second level)

Reserve your spot at

or contact me at 909.239.8313.  Class is $25.

 Download Flyer BREATH

Thriving in Your Container

 Elastic and energized, a healthy body container defines your outside boundary, keeps your insides safe and nourished.  And it’s unique to you!  IMG_8300 - Copy

Join me for a fun 2-hour workshop, Sunday 10 July, 1 pm at Claremont Yoga.

Third in a series exploring bottom-up wellness, we’ll be using hands-on contact, restful play, and movement to invite learning.  Download Flyer


Come to get inside your own skin, dwell deeper in your personal space, explore your edges.....  


Head, Shoulders, Knees & Toes

Second in a series exploring "bottom-up wellness", this class embraces Shoulders, in context of the whole body.  We’ll be using hands-on contact and movement, so learning – expanding perception – can happen from inside.

Download Flyer  IMG_8152 - Copy

Experience a bodyworker's twist on shaping your yoga practice, and unfolding into life. 

Sunday 22 May, 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm

at  Claremont Yoga

-- in the Village at 204 N. Yale Ave. (at Second)  on 2nd floor, stairs access only

 SPACE IS LIMITED!  Reserve your spot at

or contact Suzanne at 909.239.8313.  Class is $25.


Here's some of what to expect:

Free-Range Shoulders:  Go Where They Wish. 

Should:  Might We Invite “Can” and “May” into Alignment?

No Shoulder Is An Island:  Amiable Conversation with Neighbors.

Lean on Me:  Comfort, Defend; Contain, Connect.

Shoulder Rest:  Enjoy Support from Below.

Mind Your Head

This new class explores the kind of wellness from inside you --- "bottom-up wellness".  First class will focus on the head:  resolving stress that leads to tension, hands-on help for headaches, and the role your body plays. 

New class:  Mind Your Head IMG_8086

When:        Sunday 3 April, 12 pm - 2 pm

Where:      Claremont Yoga

in the Village at Second and Yale, on 2nd floor.  (Stairs access only.)

Sign up at

                  or phone Suzanne at 909.239.8313.  Class is $25.

Experience a bodyworker's twist on shaping your yoga poses, and unfolding into life. 

Here's some of what to expect:

  • Taking the Ache Out of Headache.  Lie back and relax!  Learn 7 self-help techniques to relieve head/neck tension. 
  • Finding Space Inside.  Get inside your head -- where space is needed for optimal physical and mental function. 
  • Finding Your Head In Space.  Up in the clouds?  In Outer Space?  Discover how your body locates itself through sensing and moving.
  • Not All in Your Head.  Why feeling good requires the whole body. 



Highlighting Healing Stories

I am grateful to Kristen for writing her account of healing (excerpted on my site as well), and to Maggie Phillips, who created this blog and shares healing stories from readers.  Maggie is an international educator, psychologist, and author of Reversing Chronic Pain.  I often refer clients to her as she offers an array of resources.  Check out her other resources online:

Maggie Phillips, Ph.D.
2768 Darnby Dr.
Oakland, CA 94611

As I read these stories, I'm reminded that there is no "one way"; that experiences leading to healing will be unique to each of us, further illustrating the creativity of the healing response. 

Do you have a story to share?