I once asked a past client who had come to me for lessons on Skype because he was very short-sighted, for some feedback. His enthusiasm took me totally by surprise! It really made my day/year! Here’s what he wrote:
“You are such an AMAZING teacher Charlotte! I was so lucky to find you, and you really changed my life – I mean that, even though it’s hard for you to understand, but it’s true.
You know how long I had been trying to improve my vision on my own, not getting anywhere, and in a few months, that all changed because of you. That is incredible Charlotte – and it’s all because of you – you are really, really special – a very lovely and gifted teacher.
The lessons were excellent and I so loved working with you. The notes sent after each class were very, very helpful too. They were a really important part of the lesson for me.
You brought vision back to me and can for many others – if they want it back – you are the guiding light – please never stop guiding people to clear vision.”
“Thanks so much, Charlotte. I absolutely LOVED today’s session. Left inspired and fascinated.”
So…here’s my story and how I began my own journey to greater clarity of vision:
I was short-sighted for ten years, and had to wear glasses to see in the distance, as otherwise everything was blurry. I couldn’t wear contacts at all, as my eyes were too dry.
I really hated wearing glasses – it just didn’t feel like me! So I didn’t wear them much, and as a result, I lived my life in a blur. I do think that I probably missed out on a lot of what was going on right in front of my eyes, because I couldn’t see it clearly.
Nowadays, with perfect distance and reading vision, I notice that I am almost the only person I know of my age who needs neither glasses for reading, nor glasses for the distance. Good vision tends to reflect healthily functioning eyes and so of course, I no longer have dry eyes either!
I recently went to our optician for an eye test, about 20 years after I first got rid of my short-sightedness. My vision measured several lines better than 20/20 which is considered to be perfect vision, and I read the tiny print on the reading test card. After I left, apparently both opticians were so shocked that they rechecked my date of birth, and one of them kept asking if there was “…some other explanation!?” Our optician told her: “The only explanation is that the Bates Method works..!”
That’s why I do this work – vision is very flexible and can usually be encouraged back to clarity in most cases, which is wonderful.
So…back to my story: at first, my vision wasn’t all that bad. I was 25, the year was 1992, and my vision had deteriorated only a little, to -0.50. But over the next few years it got progressively worse, until it reached -1.5 diopters, at which point, I really could no longer pretend that I could manage life successfully on a day to day basis without wearing glasses.
I went to see an optician for a vision test, and I mentioned that I thought that I might try the Bates Method to avoid having to wear glasses all the time. She told me that it would be a waste of time, as it doesn’t work. That was in 2001, at age 35. I’m so glad I didn’t let that discourage me.
I had tried the Bates Method a few years before, and had noticed that it worked, but as my vision really wasn’t too bad, I didn’t continue with lessons as I felt reassured that I could improve my vision if I wanted to… and besides, I was stressed, busy working, and had no spare time or patience for lessons.
So in 2001, when my vision had deteriorated to a point where I could no longer manage without glasses, after almost ten years of short-sightedness, I decided to give the Bates Method a proper try. I got Dr Bates’ book and did all the exercises, remembering what I had learned in the Bates lessons I had had previously. I worked at it and worked at it, and after just a few intensive weeks, I had managed to improve my vision back to 20:20.
I first noticed this when I was walking down a London street and found that I could see people’s faces clearly again – amazing! And I noticed how the sunlight glinted and sparkled on the metal of the cars parked on the road- once again, a wonderful moment.
So in short, the Bates Method was a revelation for me. It gave me back my good vision, my freedom from glasses and my belief in my own ability to help and heal myself. It also helped my social life a lot, as I could see so much more, and for going out in the evenings, my night vision was crystal clear!
I went to the optician again, this time one closer to my home. He checked my vision and found that it was perfect. I then explained to him what I had done to improve my vision from -1.5. He looked surprised and pleased, and then, with a big smile, took my hand, shook it heartily and said to me: “I always thought it might work! Well done! Another wonderful moment I shall never forget.
From then on, my life just took off – I was no longer held back by my blurry eyesight and the lack of confidence it created in me.
To be able to see clearly again was so exciting! It was SO life-changing and such a wonderful revelation, that in 2003 I decided to train to become a teacher so that I could share this amazing method with others, and help them to experience this same same life-changing and uplifting experience. In 2004, I graduated from the first two year Bates teacher training course led by Margaret Montgomery and Aileen Whiteford of the Bates College of Vision Education in London, as a qualified teacher of the Bates Method. After that, I gave lessons, under Margaret Montgomery, at the Low Cost Vision Clinic in London. Subsequently, I have taught private lessons and group workshops at or near my home in Buckinghamshire, to all age groups, from children to Octogenarians. I’ve also done further training with other vision teachers internationally.
When reading vision difficulties (far-sightedness or presbyopia as it’s called) came along at the age of 45, I used the Bates Method to quickly and efficiently improve my vision again, this time at the near point. After this personal experience of developing long-sightedness when already a teacher, and then actually “fixing” it, I enjoy teaching these wonderful techniques even more!
Having also completed several courses run by or linked to the Oxford Mindfulness Centre, and, practising the technique regularly myself, I try to bring the essence of Mindfulness into my lessons. It’s interesting to note how much the Bates Method naturally incorporates a mindful approach – even though it was developed in the West, over a hundred years ago.
I also bring to the lessons my own unique visual healing background, rich and varied life experience, sensitivity and insight – together with a lot of fun and creativity. So – come to my lessons ready to relax, enjoy yourself and – see better!
It truly is a joy to teach such a gentle method, and as one client puts it (my dentist!) – and as I hope you will also experience – “The Bates Method has been a revelation…the results are astonishing.”
My clients range from Litigation Lawyers, University Lecturers, Academics, University and School Students, Teachers, Journalists, Writers, Fire fighters, London and New York City Bankers, Business managers and Engineers, to Alexander Technique and VHT teachers, Counsellors, Dieticians, Beauticians, Aromatherapists, Naturopaths, Personal Trainers, Psychotherapists, Counsellors and Actors/Celebrities and artists. The range is vast and the quotes on my Testimonial page are all genuine, but my clients’ names have been changed to protect their identities.
I have also trained in Bach Flower Remedy therapy and so give consultations for this wonderful natural system for healing the body and mind. I am also training in NLP coaching and am already an NLP Practitioner, to further complement the mental-emotional side of vision improvement teaching.
I am also a Certified Laughter Yoga Leader, and host a weekly online free Laughter Yoga Club to lift the spirits, spread joy, boost the immunity, increase energy and foster connection…come join us! Your eyes will thank you for it! Take a look at the Laughter Yoga! page on this site.
Do also have a look at the Testimonials page for further vision lesson feedback – I really love this one too: “Charlotte, the lessons have been a real voyage of discovery and I’m really, really pleased…. I really feel that my vision is coming together now. At the same time, I’ve noticed more moments of actually feeling real happiness.”
And: “Thank you so much for the help and support you have given me over the last few months….your recommendations have been life changing for me.” (Jan 2021)
…Book a lesson and try the Bates Method for yourself.
If you would like more information, please contact me, I would be delighted to help.
I am a member of Bates Method International and the Association of Vision Educators.