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Frequently Asked Questions

FAQ
Who is this Peter Shepherd guy then?
What is personal development?
Why do personal development?
Where do I start?
"Daring to be Yourself." What's that?
Interviews with Peter Shepherd
How successful is the trans4mind site?
What is spiritual enlightenment?
From personal development to a new career?
Should I do a course in Transpersonal Psychology?
What are all these other things on the site?
Do you have an affiliate program?
Do you have a privacy policy?

 

Who is this Peter Shepherd guy then?

So you know who I am, just a few words about the webmaster of the trans4mind site. I was born in '52 in London and now live in France. Fifteen years ago I decided to combine my training and experience as a psychotherapist with what I had learned on my personal spiritual path and in studying transpersonal psychology. So my work moved away from psychotherapy towards the more exciting (to me) field of personal development. In conjunction with my mentor and colleague at the time, Gregory Mitchell, I developed an eclectic approach I call 'transformational psychology' that could be learned by students working alone at home. The book 'Transforming the Mind' was completed as a personal project (not a formal academic work) to synthesize the many sources of valuable information I had learned into a useable whole, which serves as background material to the courses. Eight years ago I began working full-time on this with the trans4mind web site as the main vehicle.

There's more about myself, and I briefly offer my opinions about a range of issues that I'm often asked about, on the Peter Shepherd biography page.

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What is personal development?

The aim of personal development is to...
  • care for our health and well-being
  • develop communication and relationship skills
  • raise awareness and mindfulness
  • develop the intellect
  • increase emotional intelligence
  • better face personal life challenges
  • recognize our spiritual dimension

Personal development works by...
enhancing and integrating rational, emotive and intuitive faculties - mind, body and spirit working in unison.

Personal development empowers us...
to live a happy and fulfilling life, through exercising free choice, seeing objective truth and realizing the highest degree of purpose.

We achieve these aims by providing:

1. Comprehensive free on-line resources to assist with personal development, created and presented with extraordinary care, and made available to visitors free of charge at point of use.

2. Trans4mind Training: our range of purchasable online, interactive video workshops that offer in-depth training across the whole tapestry of life challenges that make up the human condition, with personal support from Trans4mind Coaches.

For more about the values of the Trans4mind team and to learn what Trans4mind is all about... click here.

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Why do personal development?

All too often our personal development has already ended by the time we reach adulthood. We've 'grown up' and know enough to hold down a job. If we are fortunate we find our niche and as much as possible solve the problems of survival, then we stick with those solutions. But our upbringing hasn't taught us most of what we need to know in order to make the most of our potential, to have truly fulfilling careers and relationships.
We've learned to play a role but our emotions may scare and mystify us. We may not have learned to express our needs nor to listen generously to others. We may have lost touch with the intuitive and creative faculties that we knew as children and now try to work things out analytically, hampered by the false information indoctrinated into us.
We cling to a set of beliefs and our minds become less and less open. We may not even like ourselves much, far short of recognizing the power and loving nature of our inner, spiritual selves. Our personal development has only begun; surely it should not stop there?
A natural trait of humans is to be constantly developing, growing and moving toward a balanced and mature way of being. Our present personality is determined by both who and what we have been and by the person we strive to become. The goal of personal development is to learn and apply that which enables us to attain emotional wellbeing, understanding and effectiveness, and mindful awareness, and to share this knowledge with others.
Personal development is the conscious evolution of human nature, and yet throughout history it has been sorely lacking! Although it is in our nature to learn and grow, we are held back by our culture, which is predominantly focused on survival needs, each of us in competition with others, and our spiritual inner nature is repressed. The animal in us rules. We make no room for unconditional love.
Personal Development
Even though the culture may have evolved with technological advancement and administrative complexity, human nature has not moved forward as it might. Our consciousness and mindfulness remain as always. We are now paying the price for Mankind's selfishness and inconsideration. Going forward, the quality of our lives on this planet - even our survival - now depends on each of us taking responsibility for our personal growth.
The human being needs to awaken to the soul that inhabits each body and is our true self and source of inner knowing. Awaken through a process of self-discovery, leading to one's own, self-directed spirituality. We need to become mindfully conscious instead of ruled by the dictates of instincts, past habits and fixed beliefs. We need to throw away dogma, open our minds and reconsider. Instead of fear about our survival and competitive angst, we will then be motivated by compassionate understanding and creative love.
For those that do move forward, the next epoch - that is upon us now in 2013 - will be a celebration of human cooperation and shared love. It's our best hope for the future - and it's in our hands.

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Where do I start?

To the newcomer, this site may seem a bit overwhelming at first—there are so many possibilities! If you are new to personal development, a good place to start on Trans4mind would be to do the short quiz on the page personal-development.html. And then move on to Stop Worrying & Start Living, which presents a range of strategies designed to conquer melancholy, to help you get your life pointed in the direction you want, and to increase the pleasure you get from living each and every day.

If you are interested in the spiritual path, you'll like the Raise Your Vibration page, which contains a great range of methods and meditations that are really quite transformative. And then Is There Life After Death? is a fascinating read.

The Positive Approach
Many people find the free 30-lesson online course, The Positive Approach extremely helpful. I would work through at least the beginning parts of that as thoroughly as you can before paying for any further courses or services. In that way you can prove to yourself that you can make progress with self-directed personal development, and then you can go from success to success with the further appropriate free and paid tools that we suggest. Positive Approach is available freely. It's a great way to get going and to judge whether you like the Trans4mind approach to personal development. If you do, then you'll want to do the purchased courses too.

The first priority...
First thing, we sincerely recommend you subscribe to the free Inspiring Quotes of the Week, which keeps you in touch with the latest at Trans4mind and offers a set of inspiring quotes on a particular topic each week. Plus you can download the Trans4mind Publications. There are many benefits to be gained from these first steps... for many people, their life has been transformed for the better!

In the Mind Development Courses, the emphasis is less on subjective, emotional issues and more on the development of practical mental abilities such as IQ, memory, communication, reasoning, creativity and intuition.

Note that these courses are personal and spiritual development, they are not a substitute for one-to-one psychotherapy or medical treatment, when these are needed. Though there is certainly a therapeutic element, because they are home-study these courses are for normally happy, healthy and stable individuals looking to enhance their quality of life further.

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"Daring to be Yourself." What's that?

Of course, every writer wants to be published in print and I'm happy that finally I have that opportunity. Inkstone Press, in Australia, asked me if they could publish Transforming the Mind, but I really wanted to do something new, and they kindly supported me in that. So I've put together a new book, 'Daring to be Yourself,' that was published on November 1st 2007. Again, it's a summary of all that I've learned to date, a sort of convenient 'best of' the trans4mind site, and includes the Positive Approach and other short courses on the site, like Communication & Relationships, and Emotional Intelligence.

It's more personal though, talking a bit about my own life experiences, and it expands on the spiritual dimension, how we can get in touch with our inner knowing, our core essence. To find that inner knowing we need to look objectively, honestly and with an open mind, both at the world and even more so, into our own being. To be a witness of our mind, with love and caring of our conscious self. We have then also transcended or gone beyond the conscious mind and found ourselves spiritually. Creating our lives from that viewpoint is an exciting process, because we're no longer alone, we're connected with all creative energy, the universal quality of spirit. There's more online about it here:

Daring to be Yourself
Daring to be Yourself The aim of this book is to help you achieve a 'wide-awake' state of consciousness, with integrated use of left and right brain abilities, forming the bedrock for breakthroughs in personal consciousness and spiritual insight. The practice is based on the premise that we have learned disabilities that set boundaries to our action and knowing. But no one need accept that they must remain as they were shaped by their hereditary body-mind and by the conditioning of their childhood and culture.
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This book is like a "best of" the trans4mind site - that you can read snuggled up on the sofa, away from the computer! But much more than that, it's also an incredibly powerful program for personal growth. Remove the barriers to self-knowledge and reveal your full potential with this step-by-step approach.
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For more about the book and to read the final chapter online: Daring to be Yourself

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Interviews with Peter Shepherd

Here are some recent audio recordings in which Peter Shepherd was interviewed, discussing his own life experiences, the background to Trans4mind, plus information about our courses and the resources that the site offers. You'll discover there's lots of good information and tips in these interviews as well. To download the audio, right-click on on the download link and choose to save to your hard disk.

John Earle interviewing Peter Shepherd in Feb 2014: - Download MP3
Dr. Gabriella Kortsch interviews Peter Shepherd - Download the MP3 audio file
Dr. Doris Jeanette interviews Peter Shepherd - Download the MP3 audio file
Anthony Treas interviews Peter Shepherd - Download the MP3 audio file
Ellen Britt interviews Peter Shepherd - Download the MP3 audio file
Steve and Monica Donofrio interview Peter Shepherd - Download the MP3 audio file
Diane Brandon interviews Peter Shepherd - Download the MP3 audio file

Agnes van Gaalen interviews Peter Shepherd...


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How successful is the trans4mind site?

The site gets lots of visitors, typically 360,000 unique visitors per month, but the way I know whether it is actually of benefit to people is when they write and tell me. Often that's very encouraging, like those featured on our Testimonials page.

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What is spiritual enlightenment (as referred to by the mystics) and how is that compared to your course and studies?

Spiritual enlightenment is awakening to the viewpoint and truth of oneness and unconditional love, in contrast to the human body-mind viewpoint of separation and survival-based fears. It's not like flicking a light switch; for most people becoming enlightened is a gradual process of increasing perception. Our courses and materials on the site provide one path toward enlightenment and there are other paths… best to be guided by your inner knowing (intuition) as to which path to take. We all have different learning and different needs, hence the various paths, and we're at different stages on those paths.

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How can I turn my interest in personal development into a new career?

I think a career in personal development would, these days, best be achieved by one of three routes:

  1. Training as a Psychotherapist (for the information and to enable one-to-one sessions legally). Though this is traditionally about therapy, helping with disabling neuroses, the same principles are valuably in helping normally healthy individuals with their personal development. A diploma is enough, and a period under supervision, to get the necessary legal qualifications (plus the necessary insurance). I would suggest Rational-Emotive Behavioral Therapy, or Humanistic Psychotherapy. For Transpersonal work, I would suggest you check out the Association of Transpersonal Psychologists.

  2. Training as a Life Coach (to be able to work in companies, helping individuals and groups with personal development issues).

  3. Training as an EQ Consultant (to be able to administer EQ tests and consultations in companies). A good company for this information and training is Q-Metrics.
You will inevitably develop your personal eclictic approach, including those further principles and techniques that you've found to be most effective (such as from our courses!), but this needs to be based on a sound foundation of training.

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I have looked into doing a course in Transpersonal Psychology, would this be a good direction for me?

Yes, that would be good, so then you would be trained to help others, which also helps you, a lot. Transpersonal psychology is a very broad field; it incorporates all and any psychological theories that are effective, but puts them into a context that takes account of the individual's spiritual dimension. Read 'Transforming the Mind' online. It has the basics of transpersonal theory and a lot of good practical things to do, and it's free. The Emotional Intelligence site too. And read Ayal Hurst's 'Clearing the Way' site for good advice for living in a higher state of consciousness. When you feel it is the right time to do my courses, they will complement the above perfectly. Another good thing to do that will complement and enhance what you've achieved so far is Centerpointe Research Institute's Holosync program, which I recommend to my students too.

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What are all these other things on the site?

Alongside 'Transforming the Mind' and information about our home-grown courses, the Trans4mind site has continued to grow, as I discovered interesting new areas, was introduced to third-party courses that work well with what I offer, and met new people who had valuable experiences and knowledge to share. Here is a brief rundown of these sections of the site:

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Do you have an affiliate program?

Unfortunately not. For many years we used the affiliate program of our transaction agent, Plimus.com, but in August 2012 they suddenly decided not to handle ebooks and cancelled our account, leaving us and our affiliates stranded. Therefore our products are now sold through PayPal, which many people prefer anyway, not having to find their CC number, etc.

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Do you have a privacy policy?

Yes. Our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy states: "The trans4mind.com site does not collect personal information about individuals except when knowingly provided by such individuals. All personal information provided by individuals will only be used in connection with trans4mind.com. Personal information will never knowingly be given, sold or provided to any other entity for any reason, ever."

In practice, the only information that we retain is the transaction details of a purchased item and a mailing list of addresses for the weekly newsletter. The list is only used for the Newsletter mailings - unlike most Internet companies, we do not use the list for mass mailings of sales promotions.

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