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Building trust


Being mindful allows for congruence in our thinking and actions.

Congruence is something that most people don’t even think about.  However, most of us hold conflicting beliefs.  We just keep moving along in away that is not congruent because it’s a habit.  Mindfulness action causes us to look at these conflicting beliefs and actions and make decisions in the present moment in order to be more congruent.  Congruence is the quality of agreeing or being in harmony, corresponding in character and kind.  Using this concept as a guide to our behavior allows for unified action and thinking.  In other words, as an example of congruent thinking and action, if you say :  we should be fiscally responsible then if you are congruent in your actions and thinking (or saying) then you would not spend money beyond your current means, and you would probably save a large portion of your income.  But that is not what most people do they say one thing and they do another incongruent thing.  Sure we can say it’s because of the culture or other pressures but that doesn’t solve the incongurence issue.

What I’ve noticed is that as adults we repeat verbally what we heard and we repeat actions that we saw.  So when our caregivers’ were incongruent that got passed on.  Often we don’t even see how our actions and beliefs are not congruent.  In review of our actions we can see the inconsistencies.  This is one of the things I have been writing about when I encourage you to question what your emotions are.  I am attempting to get you to look at your own internal inconsistencies in thinking and action and give you an opportunity to evaluate what you think now and what action you want to take in harmony with that thinking in the present moment/situation.

The goal of such investigation is not to blame the original situation but rather to increase your own mindfulness action.

So why am I calling this article building trust?  Because in order to build trust we need to act in ways that are consistent with what we say.  And what we say needs to be congruent with what we think and do.  That’s the definition of being trustworthy.

This is a foundational concept in parenting; it’s paramount for relationship building and building character and self-esteem.

Simple idea that’s actually very challenging to incorporate into your being without a focus on mindfulness.  At first, try to do this with something simple.  Listen to what you say and look at what you do and evaluate whether it seems to be consistent.  If it isn’t then figure out what belief and action together are more descriptive of who you are.

Have fun with it!  Use humor/laughter and be kind to yourself as you go through this process.  This is serious but humor makes the learning process more joyful.  In my experience, being able to laugh at yourself is a sign of good self- esteem.

See you tomorrow.


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Befriending anger to increase happiness


If you think of anger as the emotional/sensing alarm system it’s important to assess what boundary is being breached.

It goes off when someone crosses a boundary.  Think of boundaries as falling into three main groups:  physical, emotional and spiritual.  Physical boundaries seem to be the simplest to understand; someone touches you in a way that is inappropriate or hurtful and you get angry.  Emotional boundaries have triggering signals – someone says something that is offensive or hurtful and you get angry.  Spiritual is much less tangible than the other two, often it’s about something that you hold dear to you or a type of energy attack.  Sounds esoteric but it is one of the most common boundary breaches.  All of these breaches lead to anger.

The key to addressing anger in an effective way is to manage the control switch with mindfulness.

The stop, look, and listen process is useful to understand the underlying emotion of your anger – usually it’s hurt or a fear of injury.  Mindfulness is paramount in this process to turn off the anger and take the appropriate action.  Anger by its nature feels instinctive however, in my observations anger is actually a path to action that is often an habitual reaction pattern.  If we feel hurt we have less of the adrenaline and inner strength to take action.  However, by accessing anger we incorporate the fight or flight adrenaline system – now we have all the energy we need to take action.  Brilliant strategy.  Think how this works in divorce cases and in the survivor scenario – being angry rather than hurt creates fighting energy.  That’s great when you need it, very efficient.  The basic underlying emotion is hurt or victim and then the action is to survive.

The problem with this strategy is when it is an habitual reaction pattern of victim to survivor as a mode of action for all injuries.  It’s inappropriate if someone cuts you off in traffic for example; you don’t actually need to survive that but you do need to be able to avoid hitting them or another car.  You need the energy to take action but you don’t need the anger.

Befriending anger to increase happiness means to see the angry emotion as a teacher and an opportunity to strengthen your relationship or situation.

A boundary betrayal in close relationships is the biggest area where this is a malfunctioning use of the adrenaline fight or flight system.  Unless one is in a dangerous relationship in which case then you need to take permanent action to get out of that relationship.  In general it is more common that what is required is an increased understanding of the emotion underlying the anger and the boundary breach.  The stop, look, and listen mindful attention to the situation allows for an understanding of  the miscommunication rather than an exacerbation of the conflict.

You can use the stop, look, and listen exercise whenever you feel a boundary breach or anger.  Try to really question those habitual reaction patterns – does it make sense that someone you love is trying to hurt you?  Probably not so what is really going on?  And what part of it is something that isn’t a part of the current moment interaction.  Unlink the connection so that the past injury remains in the past and the current situation is free to develop along its true path.

More on this and how it helps to engender positive character and self-esteem in future blogs…. stay tuned.

See you tomorrow.



Hello world!


My name is Beth Gineris. For over 25 years now, I have been teaching, consulting, and training individuals, families and groups on what I call Instinctive Health Medicine. I have graduate degrees in Counseling, Business Administration, and Oriental Medicine and run a small clinic in Albuquerque, NM.

For several years now my friends, patients, and clients have asked me to start a blog or get out a book on my thoughts and suggestions for health and parenting. Since it’s a new year it seemed like a great time to offer a daily blog about Instinctive Health Medicine and habitual reaction patterns versus authentic present moment choice making or mindfulness. I know those words all together seem a little complicated, because what we do is to complicate our process of interaction and development. I’m focusing on simplifying how we relate to the many confluent stimuli at any given moment.

As a culture, in America, we have developed a style of habitual reactions as a way to simplify our responses to the many stimuli that accost us each day – we don’t utilize authentic, in the moment choice making (mindfulness) we are re-acting to past emotional experiences; we reflexively get angry or irritable or defensive as if something has happened when indeed it actually is only our habitual interpretation of what is going on.

Think of the last time you had a fight with your partner or child – commonly you or the other person reports they didn’t say what you heard or visa versa. Why? Because for the most part none of us are very good listeners we are too busy multitasking to actually focus on what is said and interact with the wholeness of the other person. We’ve short circuited our communication style. This is most common in those relationships that are most important to us – our most intimate, longstanding relationships.

It’s a smart aspect of human mechanics gone awry. We create shortcuts to organize everyday or routine interactions and doings. That’s good but in human relationships that tends to create a problem. We end up interacting to each other and sometimes our own needs in an habitual way that leads to us reacting to our histories not our current needs, wants, or selves.

Instinctive Health Medicine integrates the Spirit, Mind, and Body. It allows for the senses and intuition that we naturally have as human beings to guide us in our relationships, well-being, and parenting. Instinctively we HAVE all the information we need but over time as we develop in our less than perfect environments we replace our instincts with our habit reactions – actually thinking the habit reactions are our instincts…this leads to a lot of trouble.  After awhile people like me get called into help.

I’m going to be blogging every day and putting up articles and guidelines to help anyone interested in creating a more mindful, balanced life. Ultimately I’ll be working myself out of the business of fixing people and families and groups and into the business of helping people never need my fixing services.

I look forward to seeing you tomorrow.

Until then think about this – what did you really want to do when you were young and what did you change that into as you grew up? Whatever is missing in that equation may give you a clue about where your imbalance lies.

Talk to you soon