This eight session program is designed to help you achieve the internal state called “NeuroRelaxation”. NeuroRelaxation describes the persistent state of your autonomic nervous system, when you can maintain a balance between the defensive Sympathetic (outwardly oriented) survival system and the Parasympathetic (inner-oriented) repair, rest and reorganize system.
Life stresses and bad sleep habits across time can result in hyperarousal, autonomic dysregulation, or both. In states of hyperarousal or dysregulation your sleep is sacrificed because your brain is locked into a defensive fear response that is determined to protect you from dangers (it thinks) surround you. This survival system takes over and does not let your body and mind get to sleep. Physical and mental health is restored by learning skills that activate the Parasympathetic system and shift the autonomic systems back into a consistent dynamic balance that supports deeper, restorative sleep at night. The state of NeuroRelaxation also helps you to learn and to engage with others to manage the environmental challenges in your daily life.
You are INVITED to attend a FREE SLEEP INFORMATION NIGHT to learn:
- How the autonomic (stress) system works in your body
• The effects of stress on your physical and mental health
• How sleep is improved through learning a range of specific skills to transform sleep-wake patterns
• The full range of stress reduction skills we teach
Come to the Sleep Information Night. Listen to our approach. Ask questions.
Decide if this program can help you in your life.
Who is this Enhanced CBTi Program for?
In May 2017 the American Academy of Family Physicians recognized CBTi (CBTi stands for Cognitive Behavior Therapy for insomnia) as the first line treatment for insomnia, ahead of sleeping pills or other over the counter remedies. In the NeuroRelaxation program we start with the standard CBTi treatment, but augment CBTi with additional mind-body skills training. The skills are introduced in a way that targets transformation of the autonomic system, from defensive Sympathetic hyperarousal, to a dynamic balanced state of NeuroRelaxation.
The NeuroRelaxation Program has been designed for the more complex challenges of those with chronic poor sleep and co-morbid medical illnesses, like cardiovascular disease, diabetes, cancer and stroke. Medical patients and many others often require more than the standard CBTi program. This ability to achieve the inner state of NeuroRelaxation not only improves restorative sleep, but also supports learning and better engagement in social relationships. Our experience has been that helping participants make changes in their underlying stress system is effective for most adults who want to sleep better and wake up with the energy and mental focus to manage their daily activities right to the end of the day.
Over the past ten years our research with hundreds of participants in this program has proven that these techniques successfully result in less stress and more sleep for most participants. Some, with more deep seated psychological problems do not achieve a full resolution during the four month program. However, even these participants have a foundation of skills needed for continuing with individual treatment for their other problems. Participants tell us their ability to manage the stresses in their lives is much improved: even if they can’t change a specific stressor itself (e.g. caring for an aging parent with dementia).
How Does your Stress System Work?
Your autonomic “stress” system controls your “fight or flight” response, for emergency defense, and also regulates your “circadian”, or daily, sleep-wake rhythm. The greater the unexpected surges of your stress system, the more likely it is that you start shifting to a state of hyperarousal. Hyperarousal means that the emergency fight or flight system has now shifted into becoming your regular, ongoing, constant defensive attitude 24/7. If your brain feels unsafe (it thinks some animal may want to eat you) it will not allow a prolonged state of sleep. It will fragment your sleep because it thinks it is protecting your life. These psychological stresses you are facing result in your depleting your brain’s ability to restore mental and physical health. A good treatment program will both reduce daytime stress (anxiety and depression) and also restore sleep rhythms. Most stress programs target the daytime emergency function but ignore sleep. The NeuroRelaxation program is designed to improve both.
What are the Skills you will Learn?
Seven weeks of weekly classes will introduce you to a sequence of steps necessary to transform the underlying autonomic system, from one that interrupts sleep continuously to one that allows both slow wave and dreaming sleep to restore your body and brain. The core of the program involves learning seven skills to regulate the autonomic system, to reduce daytime stress reactions and to shift the body and brain into a Parasympathetic dominance at night to support deeper more restorative sleep at night. Here are the skills you will learn to do this:
- Diaphragmatic Breathing
- Personal Control
- Body Awareness
- Restorative Sleep
- Meditation and Self Compassion
- Guided Imagery
- Social Engagement
Each class focuses on a different stress reduction skill, so attending all the classes is key to your success. Classes are weekly on Tuesday evenings from 6:30 to 9 pm.
Each skill is introduced in a structured easy to follow process that promotes quick learning. You will work from a 200 page workbook that provides all necessary background information for you to learn these skills and apply them in your life.
A set of instructional CDs with guided exercise routines of various durations, to help participants practice the new skills throughout the week. Participants are asked to commit to 30 minutes of stress reduction exercises each day. Between classes, email reminders and skills refreshers are provided to prompt you to use your new skills as you navigate your weekly activities.
At the end of the weekly classes you work on your own for eight weeks to integrate these new skills into your normal daily life. After eight weeks you return for one last meeting to discuss how you did with developing a resilient state of NeuroRelaxation.
To review the content of the NeuroRelaxation Program download the Information Sheet.
The cost of $600.00 covers:
- 7 weekly 2 ½ hour classes
- A Workbook with Step by Step instructions
- 4 CDs with structured relaxation exercises
- A final Resilience meeting two months after you have completed the weekly classes
If you have a third party extended health plan through your place of work (you may have used these plans to cover dentistry, massage or prescription glasses) your plan will also cover psychological treatment. Most extended health insurance plans cover the costs of attending psychological treatment programs like a CBTi program. Check with your insurer to confirm your annual benefit maximum and your reimbursement process. Ask us for a copy of our Program Outline to refer to in discussions with your insurer.
When are the Classes?
ALL NeuroRelaxation Classes are on Tuesday evenings from 6:30 to 9:00 pm. Classes start every few months throughout the year.
How Do I Get Registered?
We conduct regular Free Sleep Information nights during which we provide a full description of the elements of the program, how it’s structured, and how we support you in your progress. At this meeting you will have plenty of time to ask questions and have all your concerns addressed. These sessions are held regularly. Call 416 921-9787 for information about when the next ones are scheduled.
Registration is completed at the Sleep Information Night. If you have been struggling with poor sleep for a while, do yourself a favour and come out to hear more. You have nothing to lose and you may learn something very helpful.