Friday, August 31, 2012

Get Well Soon

It arrived in the mail; so rare in this age of email, Twitter and Facebook.

It had the heft and shape of a card, which it indeed was.

Cheerfully written across the front were the words "Get well soon!"

"Hmmmm," I thought. "Am I sick? Why am I receiving this card?"

I was enlightened when I read the carefully scribed personal note. This card was wishing me well after I broke my arm in a car accident, several weeks before. At that point, I think the cast had been on for four weeks.

It's interesting how I had we forget when we can heal from some injuries. Think about a paper cut. At the time, that little slice into your skin can be quite painful. But, soon healing occurs and you've forgotten all about it.

Yet with other injuries, whether they be physical or emotional, we hold on to the hurt, reluctant to relinquish that familiar, yet not so pleasant pain. Partly responsible, is a small gland called the amygdala - it registers and recalls situations that deeply hurt. When it finds one that looks close enough to the original offending scenario, the stress response kicks in, ready to save the day, ready to save you.

But how efficient is this when the scenario may not necessitate the big guns? 

One way to work around this is to pause long enough to realistically evaluate the situation. Recruit the power of your heart to change the chemical cascade so that you aren't soaking in those stress hormones - the ones that can disturb your sleep, make you cranky, disrupt your energy flow and make you give bliss a miss.

Back to the accident and my broken arm . . . I started stress techniques the minute I got out of my vehicle. Not only did it help with the pain, but it also helped to diffuse the memory of that event.

You see, I did get well. Soon, too.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Mirthful Monday - A Party, a Scientist and a Surgeon

What happens when a rocket scientist and a brain surgeon attend the same party?



Thanks for sharing the laughter, Kathrin.

Friday, August 24, 2012

How To Ignite Your Creativity - Twelve Tips

Image courtesy of Dimitri Castrique.

  1. Read the newspaper, blogs and magazines. An article you read may very well be the prompt you need to get you started on a topic. This one was prompted by a tweet from Christian JohannsenThe Joys and Health Benefits of Pet Ownership.
  2. Spend some time reading the works of someone whose style you admire. In addition to published authors, check out the tweets and blogs of the people you know. Here are three people whose works inspire me: Kathrin Hardie, Jacqui Barrett-Poindexter and Beth Havey.
  3. Listen to CBC radio. My April newsletter was inspired by CBC's DNTO (Definitely Not the Opera).
  4. Find some artistic challenges on blogs, Twitter or Facebook. Several years ago, Kayt Hoch offered up a daily poetry prompt. Although I didn't "play" daily, it helped spark a new direction for my writing. Here's one that @Accrete recently shared with me: Summer Photo Scavenger Hunt.
  5. Location. Location. Location. Move away from your usual environment. Different sights, sounds and scents will send you down new creative pathways. Many a blog post has been written in various coffee shops in the Lower Mainland.
  6. Go and do something totally unrelated to the project which you're struggling to start or complete. Even for five minutes. Play. Wash the dishes. Dance.
  7. Let Mother Nature wrap you up in her arms. Do some Forest Bathing. Leave technology behind. I know you can do it.
  8. Listen carefully whenever anyone pays you a compliment about your creative abilities. Suspend judgement. Quiet the inner critic. Don't question why someone is praising you. Just believe it.
  9. Travel. The same principles apply as in Tip #5, whether it be to a land far away or within your city. A week in Hawaii resulted in several posts: Hawaii 5 Ohhh! - Part 2.
  10. If you're writing, speak it aloud as you write. I'm doing that now. It helps to hear how the words sound outside of your head.
  11. Change your medium. Pick up a pen and fire up those nerves (and your creative genius). Here is an interesting article about this topic: Sign your name across your brain.
  12. Undress your stress. Don't let the flame of inspiration fizzle out faster than that last match on a camping trip. If you are constantly focused on the things that stress you, you may not be aware of myriad of sources of inspiration that permeate your world.

    Tips #1 to #11 may not count for as much when the *IBSC is working overtime. You're too tired, too angry, too frustrated, too depressed, too everything to be creatively productive.

    The common denominator will all these tips and stress undressing is how you feel. When you feel better, creativity soars.

    Here are Ten Suggestions for Undressing Your Stress. Remember that unless you implement them, they're not going to do you much good. Auntie Stress is here to help. Please email me for further information.

    *ISBC - A client once told me that when she is stressed, she knows that the Itty Bitty Sh**** Committee is working full out.

Monday, August 20, 2012

Mirthful Monday - Lexiphiles - Part 3

When a clock is hungry it goes back four seconds.

The guy who fell onto an upholstery machine was fully recovered.

He had a photographic memory which was never developed.

Those who get too big for their britches will be exposed in the end.

When she saw her first strands of gray hair, she thought she'd dye.

Acupuncture: a jab well done.

~ Source Unknown

Friday, August 17, 2012

Hawaii 5 Ohhh! - Part 2


5 Things to Take With You On Vacation
  1. Personal travel mugs and travel cutlery. It's a small way to reduce your ecological footprint, especially if you're going to enjoy the epicurean delights that are on offer at the markets.
  2. A Swiss Army Knife. It comes in handy when you make those market purchases, or gather some fruit that practically falls into your hands.
  3. A few clothes pins to keep those towels and suits in place when they're drying on the lanai.
  4. flashlight. I was glad I had mine when the power went out one night.
  5. Extra layers for the plane. 
Waipio Valley
5 Highlights
  1. A session of Watsu®-Waterdance®, beautifully integrated with Trager Approach® Principles from Sarah Lynn Joy. Please see #318 - An Unexpected Journey to Joy. Whether you have a chronic condition or hurt because unlike mine, your husband didn't forbid you from doing any of those energetic activities from Part 1. The place to go to feel better is Deep Wave Healing.
  2. Volcanoes National Park - their Visitor Centers, plus points of interest make the $10.00 admission price a good bargain.
  3. Ahalanui Park - a swim in this spring and ocean-fed geothermal pool makes for a refreshing break. Unfortunately, we ran out of time or I would have explored the Kapoho Tidal pools.
  4. Macadamia Nut Mahi Mahi. The best we had was at The Fish Hopper in Kona.
  5. Snorkelling - always a plus for me!
Ahalanui Park

5 Reasons a Change of Scene is Good for Me
  1. I learn about new things, like VOG, or volcanic smog. Vog is carried from Kilauea in south-westerly direction by the trade winds. It is seen and smelt along the Kona coast.
  2. Travel provides great blog fodder. Happy Jetting with West Jet, An Unexpected Journey to Joy, Merry at the Marriott King Kamehameha Hotel, plus several other posts in the making.
  3. It deepens my ability to go with the flow and expect the unexpected.
  4. I love to travel, but travel also allows you to appreciate the positive qualities of home.
  5. It gave me an opportunity to observe how my anxiety began to rise and how knowledge, coupled with techniques turned things around for me.

    As we headed south from Kona, we soon left the land-before-time tropical scenery behind, and entered a large area that looked as if someone had fun with black spray foam. Lava, as far as the eye could see, with only hints of new growth reaching for the sky.

    As we drove, I noticed that in addition to getting edgy, I was also becoming car sick. There's a reason why I don't ride roller-coasters and this road could have qualified as one, albeit one for toddlers.

    It wasn't until I had gained more information from the Visitor's Centers at Volcanoes National Park that I realized a big part of my unease was caused by the fear of what might be. My imagination was working overtime; I was anticipating a major eruption, any minute. I now know that those volcanoes are very well monitored and that there are things one can do, should Madame Pele, Hawaiian Goddess of Fire, become enraged.

    Once again, education and preparation makes a difference.

    How have you benefitted from a change of scenery?

Flight home. Aloha!
Related posts:

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Hawaii 5 Ohhh! - Part 1

The Big Island of Hawaii is so diverse; in weather, topography, people and activities. You'll even see signs for Nene and Donkey Crossings on your travels around the island.

I'll hope you'll enjoy my impressions of the-week-that-wasn't-quite-long-enough on The Big Island.

5 Things I Would Have Loved to Do
  1. Balanced and dipped on a Stand-Up Paddleboard (SUP), or in Hawaiian, Hoe he'e nalu.
  2. Zoomed along on a Zip-line. 
  3. Rented a scooter
  4. Parasailed
  5. Paddled an outrigger canoe.
It's a case of the spirit being willing, but the flesh weak, however. In more practical terms, it was hubby declaring that he doesn't want to see me go the Emergency Department. Again.

Realistically speaking, I know that these activities are verboten with hip replacements, fusions and weak joints; the legacy of rheumatoid arthritis. A girl can dream, can't she?

Why is it so hard to get a picture of me with my eyes open? East coast of Hawaii with a small tidal pool to the left.

5 Must-Sees and Dos
  1. A walk under the canopy of tropical trees. Make sure you also look down, as well as up. There's a bounty of succulent fruits, including my favourite - Liliko'i (Passion fruit). 
  2. Volcanoes National Park.
  3. Markets abound in Hawaii - stop in for fresh produce and unique made-in-Hawaii goods. The local papers and guidebooks list days and locations.
  4. Spend some time driving around the entire island; just make sure you stop at points of interest along the way.
  5. A water excursion of some sort - sail, jet-ski, zodiac, outrigger canoe. There's a number of providers offering these services.
We saw these along the side of the road. Does anyone know what they are?

Not exactly what comes to mind when you think of Hawaii, but these market-purchased tomatoes werequite possiblythe best I've ever eaten.
Just one of the many facts you'll learn at the Visitor's Center in Volcanoes National Park.

5 Products/Services I Love
  1. Positive Drive Fins - I saw these on some of the swimmers. I'm thinking about ordering a pair.
  2. Kona Bay Books (and Cd's and DVD's). I can't go by a bookstore without making a detour. This was one detour will worth taking!
  3. An Unexpected Journey to Joy, thanks to Deep Wave Healing by Sarah Lynn Joy at Kalani.
  4. Kona Brother's Coffee - not acidic, like a number of different cups I sampled. 
  5. Kona Natural Soap Company - each morning, it's a bit of Aloha in the shower.
The sense of smell is a powerful memory trigger. It is connected to the Limbic System of the brain, which affects emotion. If you wish to relive your wonderful vacation, I suggest bringing some scentful things—like Kona Brother's Coffee and Kona Natural Soap—home with you. Your sense of smell triggers those pleasant memories. Revisiting them is a powerful stress undresser when you augment it with heart power.

Pool at Kalani. The Watsu Pool, where Sarah Lynn Joy does Deep Wave Healing is beside this one.
To be continued. Aloha!

Monday, August 6, 2012

Mirthful Monday - Lexiphiles - Part 2

Show me a piano falling down a mineshaft and I'll show you A-flat miner.

You are stuck with your debt if you can't budge it.

Local Area Network in Australia : The LAN down under.

A boiled egg is hard to beat.

When you've seen one shopping centre you've seen a mall.

Police were called to a day care where a three-year-old was resisting a rest.

Did you hear about the fellow whose whole left side was cut off? He's all right now.

If you take a laptop computer for a run you could jog your memory.

A bicycle can't stand alone; it is two tired.

~ Source Unknown