Who I Am (Professionally)
I am Amanda Blain, holistic therapy professional specializing in yogic psychology, trauma healing, and functional and therapeutic movement. My training includes education and certifications through the National Institute for the Clinical Application of Behavioral Medicine, Primal Therapeutics®, Primal Vinyasa®, Yoga Therapeutics, Sensorimotor Psychotherapy, and Body-centered psychotherapy.
I am also a Yoga Alliance registered teacher with nearly a decade of private studies and mentorships with clinical mind-body science pioneers. Among those mentors are psycho-neuro immunologist Neil Orr and social development expert David Patient, who together co-authored the book, The Healer Inside You: Using PNI, a Mind-body Science, to Help Heal Your Body.
What I Teach
Psych research shows that 95-98% of human perception and the emotions and behaviors which stem from those perceptions are rooted in these core fears:
1) fear of not being safe, secure, or stable
2) fear of not being good enough or not being accepted by others
3) fear of being separated, alone, neglected, or abandoned.
When unacknowledged, these fears impair the health and functionality of our psyche and body, which affects our personal lives and all of our relationships. I assist individuals to better understand this psyche-body link and how to free themselves from the core causes of relationship disharmony, emotional triggers, lethargy and overwhelm, stiffness, chronic pain, stagnation, and other physiological and psychosocial concerns.
Through a higher sensing of the human condition, we can observe our actions and reactions, we can unveil our avoidance and defense mechanisms, and we can illuminate our subconscious/unconscious behaviors. Once we get to know these aspects of ourselves, we enter the realm of conscious choice, where we can begin embodying fresh possibilities within our psyche, body, and soul.
1) intuitive and confident decision making versus overthinking in confusion
2) renewed physical and emotional vitality
3) courage to face life's unpredictability and relationship challenges with a sense of inner safety, stability, and support.
As a teacher, I combine over a decade of experiential psyche-body education with the wisdom unearthed in my own journey, which includes healing from childhood trauma (including sexual abuse and PTSD) and from the stress of modern adult life. I know - from experience - that we evolve beyond limiting patterns by strengthening our relationship with the resilient powers of our own psyche, body, and soul. I am here to support you in that transformation, as you take ownership of your inherent beauty and the rewards of alchemizing your pain into personal power that will ripple out to uplift your own communities.
Here's an excerpt from a recent Self-Study Session on building inner resources
Who I Am (Personally)
I am a soul, much like you, who is having a dream in which I experience the waves of human emotion...
I incarnated into a tumultuous human life as the daughter of an incarcerated father and a teen mom. From an early age, I fought to find empowerment from within and to persevere through whatever life presented.
At age nineteen, I ran out of tuition money just before senior year of undergraduate school. I was devastated. I believed that my worth as a person was dependent on my ability to have a thriving career and to turn my back on the past. This setback brought forth years of buried pain and self-doubt. A deep sense of worthlessness came rushing to the surface, and I learned how to numb out of the feelings through eating disorders, overexertion, and consumption until I could find a way back into school.
I worked in Chicago's health care sector after finishing a Bachelor of Science in Legal Studies with a concentration in Health Care Policy. I later worked as a congressional liaison for the Cancer Action Network and lobbied in Washington D.C. for policies that I believed could make a difference in the world. In health care, business, and politics, I discovered greed, apathy, and dishonesty. Once again, I was disillusioned by life.
Each rainbow chased was accompanied by an aching emptiness deep within my core. The grass always appeared greener on the other side, but once I arrived there everything felt dark and disappointing.
Naive and spiritually asleep, I continued to seek fulfillment through the outside world, while having a very limited experience of my true self.
At that time I believed the solution was to throw myself into "selfless" service. I joined the U.S. Peace Corps in 2013. I served in South Africa and apprenticed with social development pioneer David Patient and psycho-neuro immunologist Neil Orr.
Patient was one of the longest living persons with AIDS until 2017. He was a man who had grown up with a deep sense of unworthiness and had tried to take his own life through drug-use and suicide attempts. After being diagnosed with AIDS, he experienced an awakening and made a commitment to live, and to do so with empowerment. This intention led him to Neil Orr.
Today Patient and Orr are world renowned for their humanitarian achievements and for their revolutionary discoveries in mind-body science. They authored the book, The Healer Inside You, and many more. Under their tutelage, I collaborated with community members of rural Limpopo, South Africa, to launch community projects in food security and personal empowerment.
I was so unaware of it at the time, but humanitarian work had become my new identity, and I'd become very attached to that identity. So attached, that I was willing to work myself to death.
Overexertion in the third world combined with unhealed emotional trauma weakened my body. I experienced stress-induced asthma which proved untreatable with medication. I had to decide whether to stay or leave Africa. Leaving would mean abandoning my identity, but without that identity, I would have to face the buried feelings of worthlessness that I'd been running from for my entire life.
Maintaining a venerable societal role was the only way I knew how to be noticed or to receive "love." I asked my mentors for advice.
Patient urged, "Go home. The first rule of empowerment is to love yourself first. You cannot help anyone if you can't help yourself."
Shortly after returning to the U.S., I began working independently, spending up to eighteen hours a day building "humanitarian projects" and often forgetting to eat. I didn't know how to stop.
Working for others was mask that I'd learned to wear well, a behavior deeply embedded within my subconscious perceptions about my place in the world, and I believed all that work could hide the emotional scars and stories of the traumatic past.
I did not realize that by hiding from our darkness, we allow that darkness to manipulate every aspect of our lives. Striving to run away, "save the world," and prove that I was not a product of the past actually bound me to the past. Without some grace and clarity, I would never become free. I would spend a lifetime trying to outrun something that was embedded within my own beliefs about who I was.
A humbling synchronicity led me to Thotme, a consciousness teacher and body-centered psychotherapist. With his guidance, I gained clarity about my debilitating need to receive validation from the outside world. I discovered that I had no self-love flowing forth from within. I learned that my entire life had been ruled by the ego-mind, which convinced me to stay busy and keep moving so I did not have to look in the mirror and acknowledge the pain and fear behind my image.
With Thotme's guidance, I began facing my greatest fears: the fear of not being good enough, the fear of not being secure, and the fear of being unnoticed or unloved. I went into isolation and faced the primordial pain that had scarred my psyche and imbalanced my body since childhood.
I've since re-emerged, no longer carrying the identity of "the girl with the painful past that I must struggle to hide." I am no longer controlled by a subconscious need to prove myself to the world. The neediness has been replaced with self-acceptance and non-negotiable self-honoring.
But this platform is not about me, it's about us - moving with courage and self-honesty, through our fears and into fresh possibilities in our psyche, body, and soul.
When we heal our own stress and trauma we change the course of civilization. So thank you for doing the work and offering such a tremendous service to humanity through your own healing.