The Sanctuary Byron Bay
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Newsletter #4 - December 2008

In this issue:

Director's Introduction - Michael Goldberg

Director's Introduction - Michael Goldberg

Welcome to our fourth Sanctuary E-Newsletter. The purpose of this newsletter is to keep you informed of new developments in our constantly evolving Sanctuary model.

As the year draws to a close, the Sanctuary Byron Bay continues to lead the treatment field with its unique integrated treatment philosophy drawing together the best of both medical and complementary healthcare approaches.  The Sanctuary has been operating at capacity for most of this year, and as we consolidate our reputation as one of the best therapeutic retreats in the world, we continue to strive for treatment excellence and innovation.

The Sanctuary Byron Bay’s model is increasing recognised as a best practice approach to the resolution of complex health issues.  We are now considered THE premier therapeutic destination in Australia with increasing media coverage of best practice principles in the treatment of addictions, mood disorders and chronic pain making reference to our model.

In a rapidly changing world, the Sanctuary Byron Bay represents the maturing of a much needed shift towards holistic healing where body and mind are inseparable and where a range of healthcare perspectives are harmonised in service of a client’s healing.

In this issue, we feature one of our key practitioners: physiotherapist and craniosacral therapist, Claudia Mirdita.  We also invite medical, allied health and complementary health practitioners to contact us to find out more about how a collaborative stance can improve patient outcomes.

Please note I am very aware that some people will prefer not to receive this newsletter. In that respect, if you would like to be removed from our distribution list, please reply to this email and insert “Unsubscribe” in the subject heading of the email and we will remove you from the list. For those who are happy to continue receiving the newsletter, I sincerely hope you enjoy the information we have provided. Please feel free to contact me should you wish to ask any questions, discuss any aspect of this newsletter or find out more about our programmes.

I thank you for your time and wish you all the best in health and happines

Yours sincerely,

Michael Goldberg,

Bringing Your Pet to the Sanctuary Byron Bay

Director's Introduction - Michael Goldberg

If you are an Australian resident, you are welcome to bring a domestic animal companion (for example, a dog) with you while you are undergoing treatment. Most domestic air carriers will safely transport animals in special pressurised areas of their cargo holds. If you would like to bring your pet, please let us know beforehand and we can help you make the necessary enquiries and arrangements prior to your arrival.

While you are in residence, we can help you organise pet care, veterinary assistance and any specific equipment such as toys, leashes and bowls.

Please note that due to strict quarantine rules, animals arriving in Australia from overseas are subject to import licences and long quarantine periods. Any arrangement to bring a pet from overseas will need to be authorised by Australian quarantine officials a number of months before arrival. Due to the lengthy process and strict restrictions applying to importation of animals, we recommend that you do not bring a pet from overseas.

Yoga Practice & Psychotherapy by Consta Georgoussis

Director's Introduction - Michael Goldberg

One of the most rewarding aspects of working at The Sanctuary is witnessing the profound transformations clients undergo during the process of recovery and change.

Essentially this process arises from the synergy of treatments creating a nurturing environment allowing clients to develop an awareness of their strengths and weaknesses and develop skillful tools to adapt with more ease in the world.

Yoga is one of the modalities here that allows the insights of psychotherapy to go deeper. What one initially develops in yoga practice is an awareness of the body; its muscles and fibers and what feels comfortable and uncomfortable and how to move in that body in a non-aggressive and non-mechanical way.

The word “yoga” is normally associated with health and well being. Working in the body in such a way allows us to develop an aliveness that surpasses the ‘no pain, no gain” mantra still imposed by more mechanical training regimes.

Through yoga, we learn to inhabit our bodies rather than treat them like cars in which we never check the oil levels or tyre pressure or even maintain on a regular basis. Through yoga, our bodies become once again, the important vehicles through which we exist and act upon the world. Yet ultimately, yoga training develops the mind. We develop a capacity to observe what is going on in the body and transfer this skill to the mind in meditation.

At this point, in what is called “mindfulness practice” does the yoking of yoga and psychotherapy occur. As you learn to watch the mind you develop insight into your feelings and processes which the psychotherapists can expand upon and help you to develop a clearer perspective. The mindfulness of yoga is no other than the mindfulness strived for in psychotherapy – with both modalities ultimately working together in synergy to develop a clearer mind.

From my observation, this depth of field develops exponentially together than if you were to pursue these activities in isolation.  The uniqueness of the Sanctuary programmes is that synergies are always sought between different therapies and this holistic focus is what sets us apart.

Consta Georgoussis
Senior Yoga Consultant
The Sanctuary Byron Bay

Staff Profile: Claudia Mirdita

Director's Introduction - Michael Goldberg

A highly experienced physiotherapist renowned in the Northern Rivers area for her ability to treat complex health issues, Claudia Mirdita has been a welcome addition to the Sanctuary team since February this year. Claudia completed her physiotherapy training in Salzburg, Austria over twenty years ago before following her heart, accompanying her partner to Australia not long after completing her studies.

Claudia immediately adapted to the Australian landscape and way of life, feeling more at home here than in Austria.  Reacting to the deeply entrenched conservatism of Europe, Claudia had never really felt she belonged, but in Australia, she finally found space and freedom to extend herself in a variety of ways, with her physiotherapy work taking on a number of new dimensions. Since her arrival more than two decades ago, Claudia’s clinical skills have been augmented with further training in Craniosacral Therapy and Acupuncture, with Claudia combining these modalities and her core training in her physiotherapy practice with great success.

Craniosacral Therapy has its roots in the early 1900’s with the pioneering work of Dr. William Sutherland, (1873-1954), who studied under the founder of osteopathy, Andrew Taylor Still, at the first American School of Osteopathy (now A. T. Still University).  Sutherland’s initial work was developed into an osteopathic system of treatment by Dr. John Upledger at Michigan State University with non-invasive, subtle body work now the cornerstone of this method of healing.  The craniosacral method involves very gentle touch with the therapist placing her hands on key places on the body, in particular the bones of the head and spine in order to re-balance the cranial system.  The craniosacral method has been used successfully to assist those suffering chronic pain, anxiety, depression and stress related problems and when combined with more traditional physiotherapy treatment, helps to support the inherent health of the human body.

Since joining the Sanctuary team, Claudia has enjoyed the support of her colleagues, in particular, learning from the team’s focus on the subtle interplays between mind and body.  Being part of an integrated team has allowed Claudia to work in the holistic fashion she has always aspired to but which is difficult to achieve in the primary care setting.

Claudia’s unwavering commitment to her clients is reflected in the warmth and depth of her clinical style, one that is absolutely congruent with that of the overall approach of the Sanctuary Byron Bay.  We are honoured to have Claudia as part of our integrative clinical team!