9th, 16th, 23rd, 30th June
7th, 14th, 21st, 28th July
4th and 11th of August
I think it aligns well with the Yes to Life ethos because this approach is person centered, with the premise that we all know ourselves better than anyone else can and so we can feel empowered on our own life/healing journey.
The “therapy” component is not only the benefit of us meeting together to engage in an activity but also about each one of us engaging individually with different exercises. This very engagement provides a springboard for ones’ own greater awareness and therefore ongoing understanding of oneself physically, mentally, emotionally and energetically. It is about empowering ourselves for greater self-awareness and providing tools for facilitating our own self-balance.
In some sessions I will be offering you what we call “passive” sessions in the form of Sound and Voice auditory “baths” for your own relaxation and at times self-reflection. I will be using a combination of Himalayan bowls, crystal bowls, bells, percussion and a gong. Each instrument has a different sound signature and together they will create the sound tapestry to facilitate your therapeutic relaxation.
In the case of Voice baths I will be using my own voice as an instrument using vocal toning, tibetan overtone chanting and ending our sessions in grounding percussion.
In other sessions there will be “active” work where we will be focusing on the Voice as a therapeutic instrument and everyone will be encouraged to participate as much as possible. We will be using the Voice not only because it is such a powerful tool that we can use nearly anywhere, at any time, but also for practical reasons, as since we are meeting online we cannot share the instruments that I will be using for your passive sound work sessions.
Wait! Before you stop reading this, thinking “Are you talking about singing? I can’t sing“
Please bear with me for a moment.
I invite you to imagine that you’re eating a bite of your favourite food… It tastes so good that you can’t help but let out an Mmmmm of appreciation…Can you extend that sound now and experience the inner vibration in your body? This is already voice therapy… the incredible power of humming.
Many of us are lead to believe that we “can’t sing” and this belief may prevent us from trying out therapeutic voice work. If this is the case with you, I invite you to participate in one of our sessions with the knowledge that you already have all you need.
Previous participants have told me that they find these sessions great fun, lighthearted and joyful.
In a lot of our sessions, our holistic voice work starts with some gentle physical movements, then simple breathwork, followed by the gentle practice of humming.
We will have an experience of how humming can calm and relax us. Then we will gently explore specific sounds linked to different chakras (or energy centres) in our bodies.
In her book “Sounding the Mind of God” Lyz Cooper writes: “Your voice is your own personal instrument and your vocal fingerprint. Your voice can help you and expand your energy, achieve a deep level of relaxation and give you a boost when you are low in energy. Research in the USA has shown that 20 minutes of voice work increases the amount of immunoglobulin A in the saliva. So apart from any other benefits that voice work can give you, 20 minutes of voice work boosts the immune system”
Even if some of us feel that our voices are compromised for some reason, perhaps because of a current treatment that we are in the midst of, we can “inwardly sound”, or simply listen and still benefit. This is about each participant taking their own path on this journey and reaping the benefits that they need in whatever capacity they can.
In our “active” work it is beneficial to participate in the exercises and activities to reap the benefits. However, joining the group and being present has a positive effect too, if that is what you need to do on certain occasions.
While not specifically about Voice therapy, here is some information about the benefits of singing in a choir, some of which can be applied to group Voice work.
As well as the gentle breath work, humming, toning and toning through chakras there will be some gentle physical warm ups, health allowing, to prepare us for voicing and as part of the BAST chakra balancing work. In the immersive weekends we will also add some creative group work including ‘Heart Song’, ‘Naming’, ‘Tone poems’ and ‘Voicescapes’. We may try this on a drop-in session too if we get a regular group and we can build up to it. On both passive and active workshops, I will sometimes also be offering distance Reiki.
In terms of your commitment to these sessions you can go as far as you want with this journey. You can choose to attend the drop-in sessions only or a weekend immersive as well as the drop-ins for an additional in-depth experience or you can attend a weekend immersive as a stand alone experience, of course. Mix and match to suit your needs.
Everyone will have their own experience. Be gentle and kind to yourself. If you want, you can keep a journal as this is a journey for you. All the exercises in these sessions invite you to be your own inner explorer.
Ereni Mendrinos is a group facilitator with over 20 years of experience in working with adults, young adults and children, facilitating creative workshops, study skills seminars and public speaking workshops. She retrained to be a group Sound and Voice therapist in 2016 with The British Academy of Sound Therapy, in a bid to help her combat long-standing stress and anxiety, address the possible source of some long-term health issues and to support her work/life balance. She qualified with distinctions in both Sound and Voice Therapy in January of 2017. She has also since qualified as a Level 2 Reiki practitioner in June 2021.
Over the years Ereni has had the opportunity to study with voice-work luminaries such as Angela Caine, Jill Purce, Nikki Slade and Chloe Goodchild before embarking on her professional training. Her facilitation style draws on her background in theatre and performing arts, comedy, improvisation and as a singer-songwriter.
Having lived in London for most of her life she now also lives in Crete with her New Zealander husband, one fluffy English cat and one skinny ginger Cretan Tom-cat. She writes: “I so look forward to seeing you soon on an online drop-in session or immersive weekend – I will also be posting a series of pre-recorded sessions for you to try out. I am really looking forward to going on this journey of discovery with you and I can’t wait to see you there”
Ereni trained and qualified at the British Academy of Sound therapy, is fully insured and is a member of the Sound Healers Association.
“A wonderful, joy-filled, sparkly session – truly lovely and welcoming.”
“Incredibly calming and relaxing. Feeling the healing powers. Such a wonderful experience.”
“Found the experience wonderfully restorative. Felt at peace and revitalised afterwards.”
“Incredible session “
“I just wanted to offer some feedback about the sound sessions. I am really enjoying them and also benefiting from them. I love your energy and your ability to make it feel like I am in the room with you.
… Last Thursday I was having the most awful day and I’d forgotten about the session until a reminder popped up on my phone. I was so glad when it did, It made me feel so much better and I woke up a different person on Friday, less frazzled, more settled and more hopeful. So, thank you for that . “
We are utilising Sound and Voice techniques in order to help support our own well-being. To this end, I ask that you take full responsibility for your own well-being. I am facilitating these online workshops and although I am here to support you to the best of my ability as a Group Sound and Voice Therapist, I am unable to take responsibility for any aspect of your health care. Please contact your GP/health care practitioner if you have any concerns of this nature.
Please also note, it is recommended not to participate in Sound and Voice work in the first trimester of pregnancy.