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Ancient Wisdom, Modern Science – A Heart Reconnection Experience

January 31 @ 7:30 am - 12:00 pm


Using Ancient Wisdom & Modern Neuroscience to Treat Trauma-Based Disorders and Eating Disorders

 NBCC Approved Provider | 3 CEs

For eons, ancient traditions in cultures across the world have used metaphor and storytelling for teaching and healing. Only recently has modern science developed technology that gives us a glimpse into brain functioning, allowing us to see how these processes work. This workshop explores the heart-brain connection and its importance in trauma work, along with current research that explains the neuroscience behind the efficacy of metaphor and storytelling in helping clients with eating disorders develop insight that can be used for recovery. We will introduce several heart-centered practices using breath, ceremony and ritual that will include journaling and recapitulation as the witness to our experiences. These practices offer a deep, non-personal understanding of greater choices in learning and responding to life.



Following this presentation, participants will be able to:

  1. Name the neural correlate of insight in the brain
  2. Identify the brain wave pattern that occurs immediately before insight occurs
  3. Identify the hemisphere in the brain responsible for finding the connections between seeming unrelated things.
  4. Define heart rate variability
  5. Identify how the heart-brain connection helps to manage stress, increase coherence and deepen one’s connection to self and others.
  6. Identify two therapeutic practices to enhance coherence and connection to self and others


  • 7:30 Registration and Breakfast
  • 8:30 Introductions
  • 8:45 Session 1: Understanding the role of current research and practical application of ancient and modern interventions in trauma work. Experience first hand several heart-centered practices using breath, ceremony and journaling.
  • 10:15 Break
  • 10:30 Session 2: Exploring the science behind the efficacy of metaphor and storytelling in helping clients with eating disorders develop insight that can be used for recovery.
  • 12:00 Workshop Concludes


Holly Cook, LPC-MHSP is a licensed professional counselor, mental health service provider with more than 30 years of experience as a therapist, program administrator and international trainer. Becoming a therapist was a natural path for Holly to follow. An avid people watcher, she has studied cultures, rituals and the use of ceremony throughout her life and believes that creating felt sense experiences is the way to healing and reconnecting with one’s heart. Holly has been described as a ‘life artist’ who works with people, helping them find and create the life they want to live. In addition to her private practice in Nashville, TN, Holly is a co-founder of the Integrative Life Center which integrates spirit and science-based approaches to healing and creating community.

Lee McCormick is the founder of The Ranch Recovery Center in Tennessee and The Canyon Treatment Center in Malibu, California. He is also co-founder of Nashville’s Integrative Life Center and IOP/PHP Community Recovery program. Through Spirit Recovery Inc., Lee facilitates the production of healing and recovery conferences and spiritual journeys around the world. He is the executive producer of the documentary Dreaming Heaven, in which he plays a leading role. He is the author of The Spirit Recovery Meditation Journal: Meditations for Reclaiming Your Authenticity and coauthor of Dreaming Heaven: The Beginning Is Near! and Spirit Recovery Medicine Bag.

Anita Johnston, Ph.D, CEDS, clinical psychologist and IAEDP certified eating disorder specialist and supervisor, is the Executive Director of Eating Disorders Programming at Integrative Life Center in Nashville, and the Clinical Director of Ai Pono Hawaii Eating Disorders Residential Treatment Program in Maui. She is the author of Eating in the Light of the Moon, which has been published in six languages, author of several professional articles and book chapters, and the co-creator of the Light of the Moon Café, an interactive e-course and online “workbook” for Eating in the Light of the Moon. A pioneer in the field, Dr. Johnston has been working with women’s issues and eating difficulties for over thirty-five years, and is currently Clinical Director of ‘Ai Pono Hawaii, which has an eating disorders residential treatment facility on the island of Maui and out-patient treatment programs in Honolulu and the Big Island of Hawaii.

Integrative Life Center has been approved by NBCC as an Approved Continuing Education Provider, ACEP No. 6483. Programs that do not qualify for NBCC credit are clearly identified. Integrative Life Center is solely responsible for all aspects of the programs.


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King of Prussia, PA 19406 United States
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Integrative Life Center