The Empowerment Partnership The Empowerment Partnership

 'Do not speak, unless it improves on silence'  ~ Zen saying      




Akasha LonsdaleHi Everyone,

Well, here in France, Spring is very much in evidence.  The prune trees are in full white blossom, the birds are busy nest building and there is a general sense of new life and hope for the future.   And of course Easter is very much about new life.

In the Christian faith, Christ rose from the dead to eternal life whilst the Jewish festival of Passover commemorates Moses leading the Children of Israel out of Egypt to freedom.  The astrologer Jonathan Cainer, also tells us that this is a very important time of birth and renewal for the Mayans, Persians and Tibetans. Add to this the Pagan celebration of Ostara, from which we get our Easter Bunny’s and Eggs as symbols of fertility, and it’s very clear that this time of the year is vibrant with the sense of new beginnings.

Does your life feel like that?   Do you feel upbeat and enthusiastic – looking forward to all that life has to offer?   Or do you feel a bit like your feet are stuck in treacle and you’re wondering what to do next?  If so, REJOICE!   “What!?”,I hear you exclaim, “what’s to rejoice about feeling stuck?   Plenty. 

You’ve probably heard the expression “The darkest hour is just before dawn” and whilst feeling stuck might not represent the darkest hour, it is often the time before a breakthrough, an “aha” moment, new ideas, fresh creativity.   The secret is not to despair and get all uptight about it – but to surrender to it, to trust that in the “stuckness”, you are actually working things through.   It’s as though your inner world is sorting and sifting and re-arranging – ready for that moment of clarity.

So take heart and let the energy of the season infuse your body, mind and spirit. carefully to your “inner tutor” - your intuition and let Spring be the Springboard to release whatever you need for the next part of your journey.   (Sorry if that sounds corny, but it positively bounced into my head…so I just had to write it!)

Something else that came into my head the other day when I was driving along, was the word Willpower and I have long recognised to take heed of words that  just seem to jump into my mind.    So I started to think about the word and this is the subject for this month’s feature.

Here's what else is coming up....

 Feature:  What exactly is Willpower?

 To Make You Smile: An Irish Ghost Story

 Because we like them.......

 Group Facilitation in Action workshop with John

 Beautiful, heartfelt and personalised ceremonies with Akasha

TOTAL READ TIME:  5 minutes

Feature:  What exactly is Willpower?

It seems we have a number of expressions in our vocabulary around willpower. For example:  “He/she is a wilful child”.  What does this mean?  Determined, independent, stubborn, has a mind of their own, wants things on their own terms?  Possibly it means all of these things.

“They have no willpower at all when it comes to giving up smoking/losing weight etc”.   How many times have you heard someone say “I’m determined to …… (whatever it is) and then it doesn’t work?   I know I’ve been guilty of that with weight loss – “I’m determined to lose 14lbs by March” – but I haven’t.  Why is that?   Wasn’t I determined enough, didn’t I apply enough willpower?  Maybe that was it.   However, I also know that when I really “set my mind to something”, I achieve it.   So what is the difference?

Well I decided to do some research and it was fascinating because not only did it take me back to the roots of my training in psychotherapy and hypnosis but also linked strongly with a lot of other current day theory around “thoughts vs visualisation”, “conscious vs unconscious” etc.

When I typed Willpower into Google (I’d left the dictionary at home!), it led me to the pioneering work of Emile Coué in the early 1920’s, which was then re-created in works by Norman Vincent Peale and W. Clement Stone – the big positive thinking writers of their day.  I often quote Coué’s famous verbal experiment, “everyday in every way I am getting better and better”, and had included it in my book “How to do life – powerful pointers for powerful living”.

What Coué said about Willpower is that on its own it didn’t work, because it was purely a function of the Conscious mind, requiring exertion, determination and effort – “the efforts we make to conquer an idea by exerting the will only serve to make the idea more powerful”.  So saying “I must give up smoking” makes it much harder to achieve than if you say “I don’t smoke”, because in some way the latter has also bedded into the imagination, which is a function of the unconscious mind.  

To demonstrate his point, Coué used a hand clasping experiment.  He would ask his patient to clasp their hands tightly together and then he’d say “Now try and pull them apart.  Pull hard.  You will find that the more you try, the more tightly they become clasped together”.   He would find that no attempt to unclasp them worked until he instructed “Now think – “I can open my hands””.  Then they would open.  However, one man just pulled his hands apart with no problem so Coué asked him what he had been thinking.  The reply “I thought that I probably could open them after all”. 

To me this seems to prove again that our thoughts do indeed influence our physicality, which is presumably why the medical world finally recognises that encouraging patients to think and believe that they will get better is a powerful part of the recovery process.  If that thinking is linked then with visualising getting better or something healing more quickly, there is a strong chance it will work.  Even in the case of a terminal illness, life can be extended and I have heard several moving stories of this just recently through the funerals I have conducted.

In three instances, when a diagnosis of cancer had been given, the individuals had all decided that they would “fight” the illness.  One lady, right at the start had said she was not going to go until she had reached the age her mother was when she died.  She passed that age by 5 months!  As the health of the others deteriorated, they both decided to reach important dates for them.  Not long after those dates were passed, they died.  I’m sure you have heard stories like this yourself, and maybe even actually experienced it within your own family or friendship circle.  

Whilst this might seem like a depressing example, it’s also inspiring - the realisation that we really do have an enormous amount of control over our health and general wellbeing in life both emotionally and physically.  However, instead of kicking out the notion of Willpower entirely, I’m going to consider what someone who witnessed the work of Coué said “When willpower is used in line with the idea in the mind (imagination), then both get multiplied”.  Now…. where’s that size 12 dress!


Beautiful, personalised and heartfelt ceremonies created and conducted for you by Reverend Akasha Lonsdale, Interfaith Minister. 
After several funerals in quick succession, I am looking forward to two weddings, a baby blessing and an adoption blessing.  If you would like me to create a special ceremony for a milestone in your life and be your officiant on the day, then contact me to discuss your heart's desire at:

If you are not in the UK or too far away from Wiltshire, then I can still create the ceremony for you.  Details of all the ceremonies I offer can be seen at:

To make you Smile: An Irish Ghost Story

This happened a while ago in Dublin, and even though it sounds like an Alfred Hitchcock tale, it’s true.  John O'Brien, a Trinity College student, was on the side of the road hitch hiking on a very dark night and in the midst of a storm.

The night was rolling on and no car went by. The storm was so strong he could hardly see a few feet ahead of him. Then a car came slowly out of the rain towards him and stopped.

John, desperate for shelter and without thinking about it, got into the car and closed the door, only to realize there was nobody behind the wheel and the engine wasn’t on! The car started moving slowly. John looked at the road ahead and saw a curve approaching. Scared, he started to pray, begging for his life.

Then, just before the car hit the curve, a hand appeared through the window and turned the wheel. John, paralysed with terror, watched as the hand repeatedly came through the window, but never touched or harmed him. Shortly thereafter John saw the lights of a pub appear down the road, so, gathering strength, he jumped out of the car and ran to it.

Wet and out of breath, he rushed inside and started telling everybody about the horrible experience he had just had. A silence enveloped the pub when everybody realized he was crying and... wasn’t drunk. Suddenly, the door opened, and two other people walked in from the stormy night. They, like John, were also soaked and out of breath.

Looking around, and seeing John sobbing at the bar, one said to the other... ‘Look Paddy... there’s that fecking eejit that got in the car while we were pushing it.’


Because we like them

We decided that each month we would include a few links to other sites, either because we know the people concerned and think they are great or we were inspired by the site and wanted to share it with you. By the way, these are not affiliate links and no money is received for including them.

This site is related to green living, health, human rights and loads more..
It also has some really cool, FREE e-cards (spread love and laughter whilst saving the world - sounds good to me!)
I know I featured this before in 2006, but with all our new readers, I thought I'd share it again because it's a great site packed with all sorts of useful information.
Jonathan Cainer is an excellent and "spookily accurate" online astrologer. Whenever I read his predictions, I feel like he has been looking over my shoulder!

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Training in the art of facilitating events where high levels of involvement, participation and effectiveness are needed.  This is a co-created workshop, with opportunities to practice and experience, with feedback and learning from what happens.

If you are interested in Group Facilitation, then you won't want to miss this.  I suggest you seriously consider booking early, as places are strictly limited to 10 people.

When?: Saturday and Sunday,28-29th June 2008

Where?: Regents College, Inner Circle, Regents Park, LONDON.NW1.

How much?: £165 early bird or £195 from 15th May 2008.

Where do I book and pay?

Don't forget that you can see details of everything that we offer by visiting these sites:


So until next time, live life with passion and on purpose!


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© 2008 The Empowering Partnership Ltd
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