Independence Day

Independence fosters a person’s ability to be self-reliant and self-sufficient. Independence is a prime motivator for self-determination and success in life.

In the beginning of our life, our self-esteem and sense of our value is dependent upon our parents’ influence and perception of us and the world. What they say we are worth is what we believe about ourselves. Later, it is our social circles and friends, then society who we let tell us what our life is worth. A person has the ability to choose whether to live by the opinions of others, form their own opinions, or a mixture of the two.

Although we are free to pursue our own dreams, we are still a society that values status. We use titles and college degrees, certifications, employment experiences, money and material things to measure a person’s worth. We often let social standing and what others think of us dictate what our actions are and this influences our self-esteem. However, the rut of getting stuck in this vicious cycle doesn’t have to stay this way. You can learn to develop your own value, to be valuable to yourself. By learning to invest in yourself, be valuable to yourself, gives you the tools necessary to embrace independence.

Independence doesn’t mean you never need other people. It doesn’t mean that you don’t need a support system. It doesn’t mean that you can handle everything all by yourself and never get stuck. It does mean that you maintain your own status quo though. You are in control of the type of help you get and the type of people you get help from. You are in control of whether you are willing to not only be a support for others, but accept support from others. Giving help to someone without encouraging their independence is often worse than not helping at all. When you foster dependency, you are limiting people from their potential. This is the importance of stepping out beyond your comfort zones to allow yourself the freedom to grow, to learn, to change. Fostering that independence can help make life a smoother experience that is more manageable.

It is said that every person has four endowments: self awareness, a conscience, independent will, and creative imagination. Utilizing these gifts, provides us the ultimate freedom. The power to choose (we always have a choice), to respond (not react), to change (change can be liberating). The ability to be independent is something that not everyone possesses, however this is a skill that can be taught. Learning to be independent increases our ability to survive in the world. Learning to support yourself, on your own effort, is fundamental for any success you ever hope to achieve in your life.

The ultimate ideal is to be independent and use that independence to help other people. We are not talking about helping people by making them dependent on you. Though sometimes that can happen without us intending for it to. Helping people by freeing them from their dependencies also helps them build their own self-esteem.

The bottom line is this. Think for yourself. Live your life on your terms. Be willing to give help to others, ask for help when needed; be willing to learn, change, and invest in yourself, and then help others do the same.

It’s time for your Independence Day to begin. Set up a complimentary 30 minute one on one session to explore what’s possible for you.

Say Something Nice Day

Sometimes you have to be kind to others….not because they’re nice, but because you are. ~Anonymous

If you haven’t seen the Disney movie “Bambi”, I highly recommend it. It has a lot of valuable lessons throughout for kids and adults. One the the ones that stands out to me that I have carried through my life was referenced by Thumper, a young rabbit referring to something he learned from his mother…… “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all.”

This is good advice to live by when speaking to each other and to ourselves.

Putting positive and uplifting speech into action has been the focus of many songs, poems, movies, and books over the years. We can learn a lot from these portable lessons of goodness.

One such call to action was represented as follows:

On July 31, 2011, the president and CEO of the Charleston, South Carolina Speech and Hearing Center, Mitchell Carnell, published a short Amazon book called “Say Something Nice: Be a Lifter!” The book was and is really about the health benefits you receive when you lift others up instead of tearing them down.

In 2006, Carnell’s work in communication and good works was officially recognized when the mayor of North Charleston, South Carolina proclaimed June 1 as Say Something Nice Day in recognition of Carnell’s communication efforts.

The aim of this special day is to fight against unkindness, bullying, and the lack of politeness that dominates society today. The world can be an unpleasant place at times, and if there is something that we really need, it’s a little more nicety and kindness.

This includes being nice to ourselves as well. It’s imperative to appreciate even the little things in our lives. Say something nice to yourself about the things you have experienced in your life; reflect on all of your accomplishments or completed goals (no matter how small). This can make you feel good on the inside. 

Everyone you meet is fighting a battle you know nothing about. Be Kind. Always. ~ Brad Meltzer

Mother May I

Take a twist on an old children’s game and revamp it to enhance some important workplace skills with a group of Teenagers or Adults.

Looking for something fun and interactive to do with your team, workgroup, co-workers, to inspire active listening skills, self-restraint, develop those leadership skills to give instruction, and take on instructions? Looking to participate in some fun healthy competition?

How to play the Mother, May I Game:

  1. Line up each player shoulder to shoulder about a foot apart.
  2. The player who is “Mother” (you can also use Father or Captain in place of Mother) stands in front of the other players.
  3. The “Mother” figure then calls on a person by name and gives them instructions so they can move forward. For instance, “Maxwell, take 2 GIANT steps forward.”
  4. The person who is called on must then say, “Mother, may I?”
  5. The “Mother” then responds either “Yes”, and the person can take the steps forward, or “No” and the person must remain in their place without moving.
  6. If the person makes a move and forgets to ask, “Mother, may I?” then they must go back to the starting line.
  7. If another person takes the steps out of turn, they must also go back to the starting line.
  8. The first person to reach the “Mother” figure, wins!

Twists on the Mother, May I Game: The fun can be ramped up a bit when the person playing the “Mother” role adds their own rules. For example, instead of simple “steps”, “Mother” can ask that the participants waddle, hop, jump or scoot. And all the steps don’t have to be forward – they can be backwards or sideways too, which can help the game last longer.

Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT)

EFT stands for Emotional Freedom Techniques

EFT is a practical self-help method that involves using the fingers to gently tap on the body’s acupuncture points along the meridian lines of Chinese medicine. It is often referred to as ‘EFT Tapping’ or simply as ‘Tapping’. The therapeutic effects of this technique are recognized around the world.

EFT tapping is an alternative treatment for certain emotional and physical conditions. Some research indicates that it may be effective for anxiety, depression, emotional turmoil, PTSD, and some other conditions.

There have been relatively few studies on EFT, but the body of research has grown in recent years.

In addition to the studies that evaluate EFT on people with both anxiety and depression, other research focuses on EFT for those with depression  or PTSD alone.

In a 2013 study, 30 veterans who received EFT treatment along with standard care had significantly less psychological distress and PTSD symptoms than those who were on a waiting list for treatment.

In addition, after three and six sessions, 60.0% and 85.7% of these participants respectively no longer met the PTSD clinical criteria. At 6 months after the treatment, 79.5% of participants did not fit the criteria, which the researchers said indicated the long term benefits of EFT.

In a 2017 survey of EFT practitioners, most (63%) reported that EFT could resolve even complex PTSD in 10 sessions or fewer. Almost 90% of respondents stated that less than 10% of their clients make little or no progress.

More recently, a 2019 study involving 203 individuals tested the physical reactions and psychological symptoms of people attending EFT workshops. The majority of people that took part were women over the age of 50 years.

The researchers reported that participants experienced significant reductions in anxiety, depression, and PTSD symptoms, as well as in pain levels and cravings. They also reported improvements in happiness.

Physical measures in a subset of participants showed improvements in heart rate, blood pressure, and levels of the stress hormone cortisol.

In other research, students with anxiety reported that EFT helped them feel calmer and more relaxed.

In addition, practitioners often combine EFT with other approaches, including cognitive therapy, which may play a role in the treatment’s success

What is EFT and who uses it?

EFT,  first came to prominence in the 1990s when developer Gary Craig published information about the therapy on his website EFT International dot org.

It involves tapping specific points on the body, primarily on the head and the face, in a particular sequence, on one or both sides of the body at particular spots. While doing this, the person focuses on the issue that they wish to treat.

How does it work?

As with acupuncture and acupressure, tapping involves the body’s energy meridian points, which are a concept in Chinese medicine. Proponents believe them to be areas of the body through which energy flows.

In this theory, blocks or imbalances in the flow of energy lead to ill health. According to EFT advocates, tapping on these meridian points with the fingertips restores the balance of energy to resolve physical and emotional issues.

It can also work in a similar way to mindfulness, as it can draw a person’s attention to their body and breathing. It may serve as a mental distraction from the issues that are causing anxiety or stress.

How to do EFT tapping

People may also be beneficial for a person before an event that they expect to cause stress or anxiety.

To use EFT tapping, follow these five steps:

1. Identify the issue

During this step, the person thinks about the problem that they wish to resolve. They should only choose one issue to focus on at a time.

2. Test the initial intensity

A person should rank the intensity of the issue on a scale of 0–10, with 10 being the worst the issue has ever been. This ranking system allows the person to assess the effectiveness of the tapping at the end of the treatment.

3. The setup

Before beginning each round of tapping, the person should decide on a simple reminder phrase to repeat while tapping the karate chop point. This point is at the center of the fleshy part of the outer hand.

The reminder phrase should acknowledge the issue and convey self-acceptance in spite of it. For example, a person might choose to say:

“Even though I have [issue], I deeply and completely accept myself.”

4. The sequence

During this step, the individual taps on specific points on the body while repeating the phrase that they have chosen. If a practitioner is performing the treatment, they will carry out the tapping.

The tapping points, in sequence, are as follows:

  • top of the head (TOH) — directly in the center of the top of the head
  • beginning of the eyebrow (EB) — the beginning of the brow, just above and to the side of the nose
  • side of the eye (SE) — on the bone at the outside corner of the eye
  • under the eye (UE) — on the bone under the eye, approximately 1 inch (in) below the pupil
  • under the nose (UN) — the point between the nose and upper lip
  • chin point (CH) — halfway between the underside of the lower lip and the bottom of the chin
  • beginning of the collarbone (CB) — the point where the breastbone (sternum), collarbone, and first rib intersect
  • under the arm (UA) — at the side of the body, approximately 4 in below the armpit

When tapping, use two or more fingertips and repeat the tap approximately five times on each point.

While some points have a “twin point” on the other side of the body, it is only necessary to tap on one side. However, individuals can tap these points on both sides if both of their hands are free.

5. Test the intensity again

Again, rank the intensity of the issue on a scale of 0–10. Ideally, this will have improved. Repeat the process until the intensity reaches 0 or plateaus.

New Year Message 2020

Slow down a bit and work on not overthinking.  Find time to rest your body  and your mind.  Healing comes with rest and time.  Healing also comes from pushing forward and keeping the body and mind moving.  The key is learning to set personal limits, boundaries, and pacing yourself.

Set a goal.  It doesn’t matter if it is a small goal or a larger more challenging goal. Take small steps towards your goal.  Each step is one step closer to achieving the end result, whatever that may be for you.  Share yourself with others. 

Never give up HOPE and belief in the greater good.  Allow yourself to see the light despite all of the darkness.

Someone, somewhere, is sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree. Pay it forward by planting one small kindness at a time, and help cast the shadow of your fears and limitations behind you.

I wish you enough.  Enough love.  Enough pain relief.  Enough progress.  Enough happiness.  Enough joy.  Enough progress.  Enough life.  Enough of all that you need in the New Year.

Happy New Year!!!

This Is It

This is it! The sign you have been looking for. The confirmation you needed to take that next step to transformation, of moving forward based on the the transitions you have experienced, have been experiencing or are about to experience. This is it. The support you have been looking for, or never knew you needed. This is it. The time to harness your inner strength and begin your transformation to your life – A life worth living!!