All posts - Page 1

The healing power of stories

The healing power of story

"I hope you will go out and let stories happen to you, and that you will work with them, water them with your blood and tears and your laughter till they bloom, till you yourself burst into bloom." Clarissa Pinkola-Estes, author, poet, spoken word artist and Jungian psychoanalyst. 

The use of story goes way back in our culture, to a time before we were literate. Story was used as a way of sharing knowledge and information, helping others, and healing. In ancient traditions, one person within the tribe or culture would be allocated the role of storyteller and it would be their job to share stories that would bring the community together to learn and bond.

I find that what is beautiful about our culture, is that now all of us have the chance to take on that role. We can all be storytellers if we wish.

The Beginner’s Guide To Mindfulness


Looking to incorporate Mindfulness into your daily routine? Or are you on the fence? It’s quite simple once you know how.

Best of all? It will help you to enjoy life better.

You don’t have to be a Buddhist or a hippy. You also don’t have to sit and meditate for hours if that isn’t your cup of tea.

The Beginner’s Guide To Mindfulness

“You have a treasure within you that is infinitely greater than anything the world can offer.” – Eckhart Tolle

What is Mindfulness?

Consciousness and Relaxation: brothers or mortal enemies?

Consciousness and relaxation

When you think about relaxation, how might you describe this to someone? Watching TV? Listening to music? These descriptions are actually further from relaxation than you may think. You might also think that they allow you to switch off your “conscious processes” for a while, which couldn’t be further from the truth.

Whilst it is true that some kinds of music might help you to feel relaxed, if you’re watching a detective show on television or a thriller, you’re not allowing yourself to induce what is called “the relaxation response”.

This is because our bodies are releasing lots of what we call “hormones” and “neurotransmitters”. These are the chemicals our brains release. They are responsible for everything that goes on in our bodies – our thoughts, feelings and behaviours. They are also involved in the stress response – when levels of these go up we are prepared for “fight or flight”, and when they come down, we feel relaxed.

Are you looking for a cost effective space in which to host a meeting, workshop or group?

Room rental

If so, you may wish to consider The Hope Street Centre. We currently have availability for local groups and community events on a Sunday (other times may be available depending upon your requirements).

The space would lend itself well to yoga classes, book clubs, writers groups, or meetings, however please get in touch to discuss your options. 

We have 5 rooms available, all of different sizes which can be viewed by arrangement. Rooms will be charged out at £12 per hour. 

The Hope Street Centre is a tranquil building in the heart of Sandbach, close to Junction 17 off the M6. There is ample free parking close by. 

If you are interested in finding out more, please call Ann Lowe on 01270 764003.

Meeting rooms to rent in Sandbach

Is our ego real? Or simply a mental construct?

Is our ego real? Or simply a mental construct?

We’ve all heard of the ego before: both Freud and Jung gave us a comprehensive introduction. However we do not need to study psychology in detail to recognise the ego - we can see it in ourselves or in others if we observe. 

The co-worker flashing his around the office, or the rich and famous flaunting their possessions are often criticised for having big egos, however the truth is that all of us have one. 

Aside from the latter- the guy who we say is 'full of himself' - the ego is often referred to as the conscious mind, the part of our identities which we consider to be the “self”. The part that in Freud’s theory mediates between the desired of the id and the super-ego. One thing we do know for sure, is that what we believe to be our real selves or “the self” ultimately dictates our whole lives.

October offers for Aromatherapy

Aromatherapy oils

October offers for Aromatherapy

The Hope Street Centre is delighted to have a new therapist on board, Cindy Lyon. 

Cindy offers aromatherapy massage, Swedish massage and other treatments. She is fully qualified and has been practising for over ten years.

What is aromatherapy?

Aromatherapy is an alternative medicine technique which involves massage with essential oils. These oils are derived from the essence of plants, flowers, trees and berries.

The massage itself – an all-over body massage or a part body massage - allows the essential oils to carry out their therapeutic effect. 

Although modern aromatherapy originated within the last hundred years, essential oils have been used to heal since ancient civilization.

What can you expect from treatment?

What makes us conscious?

What makes us conscious?

What makes us conscious?

A special type of brain cell could give us consciousness

Wouldn’t it be amazing if our consciousness came from something as small as a brain cell?

Some scientists believe this is the case with the discovery of a special type of brain cell. Found in just two areas of the human brain, these cells are known as “Von Economo Neurons”.

Only recently discovered in the human brain, these rare types of cells have an interesting structure – one that suggests their purpose is to rapidly send information. This suggests they have a role to play in intuition, which is important as it allows us to overcome uncertainty and make quick decisions.

More fascinating perhaps is the finding that these cells reside in high numbers in just two small areas of the brain. These areas, the anterior cingulate and the anterior insula, have been linked with self-awareness, empathy, social reasoning and emotion.

Living stories

I love stories. 

 I read and re-read my favourites and watch my favourite films over and over again.

 I love being swept along in lives of my favourite characters as they make decisions and take actions. They know only what the author lets them know and are able to draw only on the character traits that the author has given them.

 Of course, once I’ve read the story I can never again not know what’s going to happen. I can never again not know what decision a character will make or what they will do.

Motivational Interviewing Programme as a Pre-Therapy


“Motivational Interviewing is a style of talking pre-therapy that can be utilised in response to an individual presenting ambivalence or resistance to Positive Change” (Moyers, 2000)

As a Consultant Academic for Lord Ashcroft’s Veterans’ Transition Review, I was asked to comment on “dual diagnosis care”, in relation to Veterans presenting symp-toms of PTSD and using self-medication as a treatment (Ashcroft et al, 2014; Meis-ler, 1996).  It is generally accepted that those with addiction/habit issues often present “ambivalent” and “resistant” behaviours that prevents positive behaviour change (Kemp, 2011, p434).  This is supported by my own experiences as a counsellor as I have experienced ambivalence and resistance in clients, and at first they are strongly motivated for positive change, but frustratingly change takes a long time to material-ise.  

Good communication isn't magic!

Picture the scene, if you will. It is Christmas at the table of the Dickensian Cratchit family. The family is sitting down to a meagre Christmas lunch, prepared by Mrs Cratchit, and appreciated with many compliments and congratulations by her family. Sisters and brothers politely help one another to the dishes of the season’s celebratory fare. There is a well-mannered and caring atmosphere as children and parents converse with respect and humour.

About us

The Hope Street Centre is an independent centre located in the attractive rural market town of Sandbach in South Cheshire, with easy access to the M6 motorway and the railway network at Crewe.  The centre is readily accessible from the neighbouring towns of Congleton, Alsager, Middlewich, Holmes Chapel, Knutsford, Crewe, Kidsgrove, Winsford, Northwich, Warrington and Stoke on Trent.

To contact one of our therapists click this link
Our Address: 10 Hope Street, SANDBACH, Cheshire, CW11 1BA
Telephone:      01270 764003 (weekday afternoons only)

Theme by Danetsoft and Danang Probo Sayekti inspired by Maksimer