Psychology Delivered at WVRC on August 2nd
GORDON FELL led us in the Pledge. LENNY came forward, we sang America, and it was well done. PP DON NELSON provided the Invocation, first advising that we could sit, but not chew…’Help us to reach out, …to join hands…to join more fully…to sustain and care…to love more and hate less…care more and reject less…that bound together by Rotary International we may sustain each other…all to the service of others. Well done, DON.
There were guests. PP RON LYSTER brought his brother, George, and his mother, Carlene. LENNY was with Sunny what a pair! I was pleased to announce that PP HOWIE HENKES will soon be returning to the fold we’ve missed you, HOWIE.
BILL PIERCE has resigned, since he works on the other side of town. Also someone reported that past member Adam Boserup passed away on July 30th. As reported earlier, Marjorie Viau is now at Berkeley East she is doing well.
Birthdays were up next. KACY ROZELLE led off, appropriately enough, on the 1st of August, choosing Basking Ridge NJ. I was next, on the 11th in Los Angeles, and exercising my editorial privilege, I feel compelled to point out that there is still time for presents… JACK HARRIS liked the 13th, also in LA. DAN PRICE made it a threesome for LA, arriving on the 16th. MARK BLOCK went all the way back to Passaic, NJ, on the 25th, while LENORE MULRYAN liked Lompoc, also on the 25th. We all signed the bookplates for the Library a really nice idea, by the way.
Envelopes for each of us were passed out covering the Paul Harris Dinner on September 29th. PP STEVE DAY filled us in on the contents, which included a book of eleven raffle tickets. This is the 23rd Annual District 5280 Celebration, at CBS Studios in the Valley, and the tab is $100.00 per person. It promises to be a winner, so get your checks in soon.
The District Literacy Breakfast will be at Lawry’s on Friday the 10th, 0800. MARK ROGO will be gathering those who can attend (and it’s FREE).
ELLIOTT TURNER provided the joke, which will be here summarized. An attorney had been working feverishly to get a Stay of Execution for his client, who was scheduled to be executed at midnight that day. Arriving home, late and exhausted, his wife jumped all over him for being late, etc. When he finally made it to the shower, the phone rang. His wife picked it up, learned that the client HAD been granted a Stay, and realized that hubby really did have a legitimate excuse for being late, etc. In delivering the message to her husband well, you get the idea, I hope.
I introduced our Speaker, Dr. Nancy Irwin. Born in Atlanta, she moved to New York in 1985 and began her career as a stand-up comedian. In 1994, Nancy moved to LA, where she heard that Hollywood needed more blondes…On a visit as a volunteer for Children of the Night, a shelter for sexually abused children in Van Nuys, she was so impressed that it changed her life. She earned a doctorate in Psychology, and began specializing in the prevention and healing of child sexual abuse. Her office is in WLA, and her number is (310) 235-2882.
Dr. Irwin began by drawing an oval, which illustrates our mind at birth. It is blank, to be filled in by experience as we grow. She believes we are all born to win we should achieve our goals. When you smile at a child, they smile back. One of the basic parts of our brain is called the psyche flight this provides us with warnings if we are endangered. There is also an anxiety response, in which we worry about what we should do, or depression if we think we can’t win.
We all have an underlying need it is positive, and clinicians seek it out, since it is controlling. Hypnosis is built upon our suggestible impulses. The entire middle of the oval is our subconscious mind, where you start building up positive and negative reactions. It is filled with things we are good at, and enjoy, plus those that are dangerous things we don’t like. Children are sometimes told they are stupid, or you’re inferior, you’re just a girl, and this becomes part of their subconscious. Others are told they’re smart, beautiful, talented and that, too can become a self-fulfilling prophecy.
Remember that none of these statements are facts they are beliefs. And most of our existence rests upon our beliefs. All your behavior comes from your subconscious mind. Between the ages of eight and twelve, most children produce a filter of judgment which controls the conscious mind. Logic, reasoning, rationality and decision-making begin here, along with will power. Remember that your conscious mind is only about 12% of your mental capabilities. This helps to explain why smart people continue to do stupid things, over and over again.
She gave an example of herself trying to quit smoking. She realized that as a teenager, many associations of it being sexy, or glamorous, or making her attractive to men, were simply not true. And remember, these are beliefs, not facts. So she plugged into the belief that NOT smoking made her more attractive to men. Another example wearing the yellow suit she had on, she goes to a sushi bar in Westwood with her boyfriend and they break up that very evening. Will she continue to wear that suit, or go to that bar? Probably not. But by managing your wishes, you can channel your behavior into positive ways.
Dr. Irwin described what a hypnotic trance feels like. You feel just like you do when you are being massaged, or praying, or meditating and you still have the power to walk out of the room, so you won’t do anything you wouldn’t ordinarily do. Normal brain waves flow up and down, fairly close together. When you are in a hypnotic trance, they are much more spread out. and thus your thoughts can be much more suggestive. When you come out of the trance, you return to normal but the positive suggestions you received during the trance begin to work. Sometimes it is immediate, sometimes it takes a few sessions or a few days.
The reason hypnotic suggestions can be so powerful is because your subconscious mind doesn’t care. We get whatever we focus on. With children, we don’t tell then not to do something. Instead, we tell them, I’d rather you did such and such positive thoughts. Does Tiger Woods think, as he addresses a shot, “Don’t go in the water don’t hit into the trees?” No, he is thinking, get the ball into the hole. Always focus on what you do want.
Q&A. KEVIN BADKOUBEHI, What role does your defense mechanism play in preventing you from making errors? Your defense mechanism is set up to allow you to cope. Most people let their defenses down when they come to see a therapist anyway, so half the work is already done. When the patient knows what his goal is, and they want that goal, the defense mechanism tends to melt away. ED GAULD, Suppose you want to improve your golf game? Yes, positive thinking can help. Many professional athletes use hypnotic therapy. And in the crunch, sometimes they will have that nagging feeling that they can’t beat Tiger, for instance. Attitude is vital. PP DON NELSON, What do you do with those people who really are stupid? (laughter). They usually don’t come to therapy. It’s usually bright people who are aware and know what their goal is. TOM BARRON, What if someone is truly both bright and evil? Hypnosis really doesn’t work with someone who is a psychopath, or mentally disturbed. Also, if they are drunk, or loaded with drugs, they cannot be helped. ELLIOTT TURNER, What is science doing right now to open up this field? Pharmacology is actively working in this field, and their chemicals continue to help, to make a difference.
Dr. Nancy Irwin, thank for your insights into a subject that most of us know little about.