Meet Georgia Foster, the world celebrated hypnotherapist, top selling author, international speaker and creator of life changing programs. Whether you need to learn how to drink less alcohol, grow your self-esteem, quiet your mind and your life her workshops cater to anybody and everybody. We’re so excited to welcome Georgia to the Twosix Wellness Community, where she will be running her Drink Less Mind Workshops for our corporate clients.
Can you please tell us a little bit about the Georgia, before you created the amazing Drink Less Mind program? Have you always been conscious of your health?
From the challenges of teenage life, I suffered from self-esteem issues and used food as a way to cope, so weight is something I struggled with for a long time. When I turned 18, I discovered alcohol and unbeknown to me it became my social crutch and took over from the food.
When I was 26 I had a breakdown and went to Queensland to a wellbeing retreat where I spent a week in group therapy. It was there I discovered people who were slim, attractive, rich and successful also had self-esteem issues too. For a period of time, this baffled me! I couldn’t understand why they could be unhappy with what they had. Some years later, I read a book that changed my life and my career path. It was a psychology book called Embracing Ourselves by Hal and Sidra Stone, who are Jungian Psychologists. This is when the penny dropped and I realised what was going on inside was different to what was being portrayed on the outside.
I travelled to California where I trained with the founders of this Jungian psychology and then went to London where I qualified as a Clinical Hypnotherapist.
I spent two years lecturing in the UK universities training others to be hypnotherapists. However, the college program didn’t allow me to teach the students my special approach, so I branched out on my own.
How did creating the Drink Less Mind program help you?
I used my own techniques for clients on myself. The combination of my psychology training and hypnosis makes a brilliant tool for making any sort of emotional changes, including drinking too much!
I literally trained the emotional part of my brain to like myself more, and the knock on effect was I didn’t need to drink to feel confident socially or sexually. I also stopped attracting unhealthy relationships that affected my self-worth too.
We love that your approach isn’t to just completely cut out the bad stuff, we too believe in having balance is the key. Can you tell us how you can still achieve wellness while having a few drinks?
I am not suggesting the odd hangover is bad. Let’s face it… if you win the lottery or your best friend is getting married and drinks are on her, you might drink a bit more than planned!
My approach is about the regular unhelpful and unhealthy drinking that people maybe secretly worried about. It is for those who just can’t seem to cut back, which ironically can make them drink more!
My clients work hard, are busy parents, have demanding lives who drink to alleviate the stresses and strains of life.
Habitual heavy drinkers can get themselves into a drinking rut and sadly the vicious cycle of over-drinking becomes normal.
I believe it is the ‘thinking before the drinking’ that is the problem. I help people learn healthier coping strategies so they don’t use alcohol as the prop. Key aspects such as improving sober social confidence and I encourage alcohol-free days for everyone too.
In Australia, we have been brought up in a culture of social drinking. Celebrations rarely happen without a drink (or 10) in hand. What do you consider is the main cause of our over-drinking habits?
Australian’s are known for being relaxed and laid back, however underneath I am not sure that is necessarily true. Like all people in the western world, we have become global citizens where we are 24 hours on tap with social media. The Australian way of life is far busier and fast paced than 20 years ago and I think a lot of people 40 – 65+ are struggling with this.
I think also what is key to heavy drinking is the financial pressure many people are under. Australians are more worried about their financial future than ever before and can drink to run away from this fear.
Most of the drinking I help people with is in the home i.e. once the kids have gone to bed or getting in from a stressful day at work and alcohol seems the best solution to tuning out of the pressures of life.
What’s your advice for people who want to cut down on drinking?
Stop worrying about the standard glass measurement. This is a guide line (and the good news it is not based on any medical studies). For many drinkers who drink above the ‘average’ start doing strong small steps by doing the following:
- Drink a big glass of water before your first drink. You might be surprised that you are thirsty and you brain has got confused that the alcohol which is liquid is hydrating you. Keep water, water everywhere when you drink!
- Whenever you have a desire to drink and it is not an appropriate time, such as going into a meeting or that you would actually prefer a wine than a coffee, take a pause moment and ask yourself what you think that glass of wine will give you? Is it calm, or confidence? Recognise these emotions are driving the thoughts of drinking. So, during this time bring in a funny memory or loving safe memory and hold it there for a few seconds. This memory connection to happiness will shift your thinking away from drinking and actually make you calmer and more centred.
- Keep a diary over a month of when you succumb to excessive drinking. There will be a direct correlation between your emotional state and the drive to drink. Understanding why you need to over-drink will give you a conscious acknowledgement that something is not right in your life and needs to be addressed.
- People Pleasers who have the inability to say ‘no’ can often attract heavy drinking bullies. So, if you feel guilty about opting out of a drinking session, tell your friends a little white lie, such as you are not feeling well, or you have an important meeting in the morning. Even better, tell them you have a cracking hangover and couldn’t face a drink!
- Binge drinking, or what I call ‘all or nothing’ drinking, is driven by the perfectionist personality. The Perfectionist drinks excessively or not at all. There is no in-between. This means that alcohol-free days are easy but drinking a healthy amount in one sitting is fairly impossible. A great way to combat this behaviour is to learn some daily relaxation techniques to take the pressure off to be perfect but rather be in the moment and enjoy. When your mind learns it is safe to ‘just be’ it won’t need to drink to run away from being perfect.
What do you enjoy most about what you do?
Firstly, I feel my professional journey has given me great insights into how people ‘really’ feel rather than what they show to the outside world. I am more and more fascinated with the brain and our emotions each day.
Secondly, I have had the privilege of working with a number of prominent people such as neuroscientists who have supported my work.
And Lastly, I find my work exciting because I can see the potential in it with all walks of life.
What do you believe holds most people back from reaching overall wellness?
Negative thinking, self-esteem issues and not having the right mindset. Many people assume slim and healthy people are good at it. Some maybe, however, most have to learn it.
People don’t realise that their history of unhealthy habits is programmed and until we educate the intelligent part of the mind, change will be difficult to achieve.
What can people expect from the DLM program?
The goal of the 7-day on-line program and/or the seminar is to reduce regular drinking by up to half.
Healthier sober communication is a key part of the results as well as healthier communication from within.
Weight loss is common due to less calories too.
To re-train the brain to calm down, to relax and to feel emotionally better without having alcohol in hand or in the bloodstream. The domino effect is people don’t have this urgency to drink quickly or as much. This is because they are already in a good space emotionally.
What has been your most eye opening lesson on your journey?
There are many but the most important one is I am a ‘People Pleaser’ by nature. I think it is important to have this personality trait in my work. However, it has got me into some tricky situations in my past where I have trusted a lot of people I shouldn’t have. The knock on effect is that I monitor my intuition regularly to make sure I am making decisions from a space of clarity.
Lastly, we have to ask, what is your favourite drink?
I drink regularly and plan 2-3 alcohol-free days a week but that is not set in stone. When I do drink, I only drink Champagne and Chardonnay and I love it!
Drink Less Mind seminars, Melbourne 29th July, Sydney, 5th August and Brisbane 26th August.