Monthly Archives: November 2012

Nurture Yourself

Most of you know I’m a huge proponent of the power of gratitude. But sometimes the pressures and disappointments of daily life keep us from appreciating the small things, let alone the big gifts in life. The big ones include our health, our minds, our spirits. They are a gift from God. Learning to self-nurture can help us get into the habit of gratitude. It’s an expression of gratitude – which is a form of love. When we take care of ourselves, we show that we respect and value ourselves.

Nurturing is an attitude toward ourselves of unconditional love – which is the only REAL love anyway. I’m talking about loving ourselves no matter what happens, how we look, what we do (did), or where we are.

Sometimes we worry that if we nurture ourselves the things we need to accomplish won’t get done – if we give in to our own needs, we’ll get lazy. When you feel that way, give it a shot anyway.

I grew up with a very rigid German grandmother, and lived the first 18 years of my life on a farm, with the mindset that you have to be a workaholic if you’re going to be successful. So I know of what I speak.

Yesterday, I didn’t want to do the things on my list. I wasn’t feeling well; I was tired and I didn’t have the energy to do them, but I have that critical voice in my head that says, “you’re not worthwhile if you don’t accomplish something.”

But yesterday, I decided to nurture myself anyway. I sat on the couch and read, I meditated, and I took my granddaughter to her first movie in a theatre. When we came home, I felt like doing some of the things on my list. I accomplished them and even did a little more. I began a chore my husband usually handles – one I really don’t enjoy doing.

Nurturing myself didn’t make me lazy or ineffective. It made me energized and more effective. And I felt worthwhile the entire time – both while I was accomplishing something – AND while I was taking care of myself – because I’m worth it!

So are you!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Just wanted to wish each of you a peaceful and happy holiday.

In a recent post I talked about things I’ve learned from a relationship.  Another thing I’ve learned in my old age is to not ascribe too much meaning to holidays. That doesn’t mean I don’t celebrate, or that there isn’t meaning for me there, but rather that it’s just another day – and if I need to honor or celebrate the meaning behind the label, I can do that regardless of the day, or in another way than is traditional.

My wish for you is that you find peace and joy in whatever you do this week – if nothing else, honor your “beingness”. You’re here for a reason, whether you know what that is yet or not.  The world would not be the same without you in it!

Namaste

Thankfulness

While I try to practice gratitude for everything that is in my life on a regular basis, this time of year I’m always reminded that one of those “things” is the people in my life – my family, friends and clients.

Since I meditate on a regular basis, it gives me occasion to reflect on all that I have been blessed to experience. Much of that comes from you.

I believe who we are is directly related to those with whom we choose to connect on a consistent basis. The fact that each of you have, on occasion, taken me into your confidence and trusted me with your deepest feelings and concerns humbles me. This year especially, many of you have sent positive energy and prayers my direction, and some of you have even listened as I shared. I’m honored to be in your lives and appreciative of what you’ve each taught me.

As we go into this holiday season, I wish each of you peace, love and abundance.

Namaste

Self Succeeding Beliefs

I accept that it is my responsibility to take the necessary steps and to seek the help I require to solve my problems.

I alone am responsible for how I think, feel, and respond to the situations that arise in my life.

I choose to understand and accept my limitations, and I realize that I can only control my own actions.

I choose to develop the courage to be imperfect instead of going through life hiding my mistakes and weaknesses and experiencing resulting anxiety and guilt.

I choose to find humor in life, to laugh or cry freely, and to not be ashamed of feelings and of being human.

I accept that I am responsible for finding happiness and peace of mind.

I choose to express my thoughts and feelings honestly and assertively when others violate my rights, instead of holding the hurt and anger inside.

I will accept honest feedback from others, and will strive to respond to criticism with rational thinking and peace of mind.

– Source Unknown

Acts of Kindness

One of my favorite authors is Dr. Wayne Dyer. Because I listen to his weekly podcasts I’ve heard him talk about this study on several occasions. (I have not verified the study but I take Dr. Dyer at his word). I find it fascinating, so I thought I’d share it with you.

Dr. Dyer speaks of a scientific study that was done several years ago, where they found that the serotonin level went up significantly when a person was the recipient of a kind deed. (Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that affects our emotional states, and many of the antidepressants used currently are designed to stimulate its production in the brain).

In addition, the study found that the serotonin level of the person who performed the deed also went up at the same rate. But what I find most interesting, is that the serotonin level of people who witnessed the event also experienced a rise in their serotonin level to the same extent.

While I’m not saying those on an antidepressant should quit using it and simply try to be nicer to others, I do think this speaks volumes about our society that is so dependent on pills and other methods for our quick fixes.

I have used a gratitude list/journal for years to help myself get out of a funky mood, or to quit obsessing about something that I can’t do anything about. I write down all the things I can think of for which I’m grateful at that moment. (It sometimes includes things as simple as “my internet is working!!”) Then I notice that feeling of gratitude or joy, and where I feel it in my body—and just allow myself to feel it for a few moments, before I move on to the next thing on my list.

When my day is especially frustrating or depressing, I look for someone I can do something kind for. It doesn’t have to be anything big. I send an email to someone who I know is ill or lonely—just to say “Hi, I’m thinking of you.” Or I pick up trash while I’m on my morning walk, or help an elderly person take their groceries to their car, etc.

We all know how good it feels to do something for someone else just because we want to. People are put in our paths every day who could use a hand. I challenge you to be more aware—maybe even look for the opportunity to do something for someone. Become an instrument of kindness, and see how much better you feel!

Be kind to the unkind because kindness is your nature.
–The Tao (as interpreted by Dr. Wayne Dyer)