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NZ - Complex Chronic Illness Support - Towards Wellness course

Discussion in 'Alternative Therapies' started by Hutan, Nov 7, 2018.

  1. Hutan

    Hutan Moderator Staff Member

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    The (New Zealand) Bay of Plenty Complex Chronic Illness Support Towards Wellness course operates out of Tauranga and is endorsed and promoted by New Zealand's ME expert, Dr Ros Vallings. We've discussed it in passing a few times on the New Zealand thread.

    An S4ME member has been looking in to the course and has sent me some details.

    Kira Follas is one of the course organisers. On her counselling site, Kira Follas talks about her recovery from CFS. Some snippets;

    "Chronic fatigue, which can also be diagnosed as adrenal fatigue, burn out, or in more severe cases, a break-down, is experienced when the body has become physically, mentally and emotionally overloaded for too longer period of time.

    "With little information or direction medically to assist recovery, I was forced to find my own path through and out the other side of this crippling condition.

    "It is hard to believe when you are in such a chronically fatigued state, with very little information to assist your recovery, and often a culture that doesn't understand, that there actually is a way through and out into recovery. But have hope: there are things you can do now to improve your situation.

    "After recovering from 9 years of dealing with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, also known as M.E., and Fibromyalgia (a debilitating muscular condition) I am passionate to assist people to not fall down the same hole as I did.

    So, she is very clearly suggesting that she knows how to make people recover.

    https://www.counsellingtauranga.co.nz/chronic-fatigue---cfsmefm.html
    Kira Follas has a blog on that site that includes the following:
    "As we start to understand that our genes are engaged in this magical dance between what’s happening 'inside' of us and what’s happening 'outside' of us, we recognize that we have the power to talk to every cell in our body, determining the trajectory of our lives."

    "I know now that the way I had been leading my life prior to becoming chronically ill switched ON the cellular coding for the many complex chronic health conditions I suffered from for years. As I changed my life to accommodate the healing process, I was able to literally switch off this cellular coding and reclaim a quality, meaningful and joy-filled life slowly over time."​
     
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  2. Trish

    Trish Moderator Staff Member

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    Oh dear. It sound like she has no understanding of the difference between stress/burnout sort of exhaustion and ME/CFS. That is very concerning.
     
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  3. Hutan

    Hutan Moderator Staff Member

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    Here's the link to the course website:
    https://www.counsellingtauranga.co.nz/towards-wellness-programme.html

    "As co-creators of the programme, Kira and Tina Richards , currently present 16 workshops in the Bay of Plenty but hope to bring an online version to the nation in due course. With the programme being described as 'life-changing', our collaborative vision is to ensure that this funded service is brought to other main centres across New Zealand."​
     
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  4. Hutan

    Hutan Moderator Staff Member

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    Tina Richards is the other woman who runs the Towards Wellness course.

    In November 2008 Tina was the Field Officer ME/CFS Support Group (BoP) Inc. She wrote the following about a speaker.

    http://betterhealthforyou.co.nz/testimonials/

    “We are pleased to have had Denis speak to our ME group with good feedback from members.”

    Therefore a multi-pronged approach to better health, looking at physical, mental and emotional/spiritual health and in general, a more balanced life is the only way to go.

    I was pleased you included the concept of ‘The Law of Attraction’ and whether peoples’ glasses are half full or half empty. While challenging for some, is good stuff and gets people thinking and hopefully leads to them taking more responsibility for their lives and making some simple changes.

    Often people with ME begin to feel powerless to effect change for the better in their lives so health information like your seminar demonstrates to them that there are lots of basic things that they can do to improve their life.”

    “We are planning to have Denis back to run one of his ‘Better health for you seminars’ at our annual conference in June 2009.”​


    The Law of Attraction
    From the Law of Attraction website:
    Simply put, the Law of Attraction is the ability to attract into our lives whatever we are focusing on. It is believed that regardless of age, nationality or religious belief, we are all susceptible to the laws which govern the Universe, including the Law of Attraction. It is the Law of Attraction which uses the power of the mind to translate whatever is in our thoughts and materialize them into reality. In basic terms, all thoughts turn into things eventually. If you focus on negative doom and gloom you will remain under that cloud. If you focus on positive thoughts and have goals that you aim to achieve you will find a way to achieve them with massive action.

    This is why the universe is such an infinitely beautiful place. The Law of Attraction dictates that whatever can be imagined and held in the mind’s eye is achievable if you take action on a plan to get to where you want to be.​
     
  5. Invisible Woman

    Invisible Woman Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    From @Hutan 's quote

    Was I really living my life in such an unusual way before I got sick? Nope, don't think so.

    Yes, I did work hard, but so do lots of people. If what she says is true then surely a lot more people should have ME?

    Methinks the lady doesn't really understand the difference between chronic fatigue and chronic fatigue syndrome.

    Also:
    Someone close to me did suffer an episode of poor mental health that would once have been described as a breakdown. They were very unwell, it looked and felt nothing like ME.

    Edited - messed up the quote
     
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  6. Hutan

    Hutan Moderator Staff Member

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    Kira Follas - Counsellor (P.G.Dip.Couns, MNZAC)
    Full Member of NZAC,- Professional Association for Counsellors in New Zealand

    I wonder if it is appropriate for a counsellor to be offering advice about 'cellular coding'?
     
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  7. Trish

    Trish Moderator Staff Member

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    I'm speechless.
    How dare they inflict this claptrap on very sick people.
     
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  8. Invisible Woman

    Invisible Woman Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    The Law of Attraction - what a load of sh**.

    Surely this is against the ethical guidelines of the Counselling Association? This sort of thing could do untold harm to vulnerable people.
     
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  9. Hutan

    Hutan Moderator Staff Member

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    To be clear, Tina Richards was praising someone who spoke at a support group in 2008 for the information he provided about the Law of Attraction. I have no evidence that the concept is being pushed in the Towards Wellness Course. It's just that it is indicative of the mindset of one of the course developers.
     
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2018
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  10. Snowdrop

    Snowdrop Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    And why exactly is Roz Vallings promoting this? I can't say as I've completely trusted her judgment in things ME in the past either.
     
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  11. Hutan

    Hutan Moderator Staff Member

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    The Complex Chronic Illness Support, has a website is here:
    https://ccisupport.org.nz/meet-our-team/

    It appears that they have 6 paid staff, including Tina Richards and Kira Follas.

    CCIS is a registered charity and has received funds from quite a number of donors including the New Zealand Ministry of Health.

    Edited to make clear that CCIS don't run the Towards wellness course. It is possible that the Towards Wellness course is a for-profit exercise promoted through CCIS.
     
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2018
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  12. Daisybell

    Daisybell Moderator Staff Member

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    Are you sure?
    I thought that CCIS ran the courses but brought in people to talk in some of the sessions - and I expect they pay them for their time.

    I’ve steered well clear - luckily my doctor hasn’t suggested I take this course. If I went, there would be no way I’d be able to keep my opinions to myself.
     
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  13. Hutan

    Hutan Moderator Staff Member

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    No, I'm not sure. It would be interesting to know how it works and how much it costs.

    But this talks about Kira working 'in collaboration with CCIS' rather than 'for CCIS' to create the programme.
    https://www.counsellingtauranga.co.nz/towards-wellness-programme.html
    In collaboration with Complex Chronic Illness Support, a charitable organisation that supports people diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS/ME), Fibromyalgia (FM) and Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome (POTS), Kira has been involved in the creation of the Towards Wellness Programme, specifically designed for people diagnosed with these conditions.​
     
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  14. Mij

    Mij Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    Perhaps we should read "The Secret" and get on with our lives?
     
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  15. Hutan

    Hutan Moderator Staff Member

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    Kira Follas speaks from the 7.30 minute mark.
    Clearly some people are finding the course useful and there are good things in it. My impression is that the people behind it are well meaning.

    But it's the muddled medical information given with such certainty that bothers me. There's a lot of talk of high achieving Type A personalities, unsustainable lifestyles, burning the candle at both ends, putting others ahead of taking care of oneself, maladaptive (emotional) stress responses as causes of the illness ...

    If we think we understand all that needs to be known about the illness and it's just a matter of adapting our lives to the constraints, then there's no reason to push for research.
     
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  16. Sean

    Sean Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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  17. obeat

    obeat Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    Grrrrr! I just discovered that my cells speak Greek, so no wonder I am still ill.
     
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  18. Amw66

    Amw66 Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    Again the takeaway issue is the conflation of chronic fatigue ( in all its manifestations) with ME. If a clear diagnosis cannot be made, then this is what happens when everyone is lumped together.
     
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  19. TiredSam

    TiredSam Moderator Staff Member

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  20. chrisb

    chrisb Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    There are times when one has to sympathise with the lot of doctors, and think it perhaps unsurprising that they have strange views about ME.
     
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