Valentines Day!

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Each year 1 billion cards are exchanged annually throughout the globe, making it the second most celebrated day of the year.     It’s history dates back to A.D. 270, into the Middle Ages  and the legends of  Saint Valentinus; all of whom were martyrs we’re told.    The Catholic Church tells a few, one of St. Valentinus while imprisoned for marrying single men in secret after the Emperor banned that from happening.   He thought they made the best soldiers over married ones.   Falling in love with the young jailers daughter, who would often visit him in confinement.   He sent her the first card, making him a hero and romanticist of his time.

Valentines Day began its celebration in the 17th century in February.    In exchange of hand made cards that the bearer created themself.    By the 18th century, it was quite common for friends to show small tokens of affection in the form of gifts and hand written notes.  In the 1840s, Ester A. Howland began selling the first mass produced card in America becoming known as the “Mother of the Valentine”.   They were adorned with lace, ribbon and colorful pictures.    According to the Greeting Card Association, 85 percent of purchasers are women.

I remember as a child looking forward to writing out cards, a box purchased by my mother, so we could exchange them in class.    It was exciting to see how many we could collect.   As we got older some girls got more cards than others, questioning whether the class should continue this tradition.   While the practice still remains, each child are all given the same amount so nobody feels left out.

Even though Valentines Day is a romantic time to celebrate and remember the one that you love, for many that chance never happens.     I know for myself I have never been given a bouquet of flowers, chocolates or a card on that day from even the one I was dating and in a relationship with.     It is a time many may feel sad or depressed if you are alone.    A time where you feel envious of others because they always seem to get pampered and you are always feeling left out.  It’s not uncommon for many to feel that way leaving suicide at a high, just like at Christmas.

So how do we cope with the objection of Valentines Day!    You buy yourself a beautiful bouquet of flowers, a nice box of chocolates and take a glorious warm bath.   You begin to think of all the parts of yourself that are wonderful.    You tell yourself how great they are, and you begin to rub lotion on them.    You add perfume, do up your hair and dress in clothes that make you shine.     You host a gathering of other single friends who are in the same boat.

You remind yourselves that even though you are alone … you are never lonely!   You have family, friends and perhaps a child or a small pet that adore you.    You are worth waiting for,  that special someone who will treat you with love, respect and more.   You celebrate your successes and you make a vision board.     Applying all those pictures and words that resonate with you, while reminding yourself where you have been, where you are going and what needs focussing on.      You exchange valentines cards, that remind your friends the positive attributes you admire in each one.

For those that are in love and a relationship you can apply the same principles.    Having a candlelit dinner, nice music and candles.    A warm long bath with bubbles, a massage for two and enjoying the comfort of each other.   You remind them why you are here, giving the assurance of why your love will last and without them you may not be where you are now.    You can also make a vision board of love for each other, including your dreams and future goals.    You create a board designed by two hearts that have endured time.     A continuing of where your love will grow, and make that commitment once again to honoring each other.   A practice that should be shown on a regular basis.

 

 

 

Mindfulness Practice

Very soon I will begin to teach others about Mindfulness, which means “paying attention”.      When we are at peace, we become aware of our mind, emotions, body in a particular way.    Sustained in the present moment and acting nonjudgementally, while discovering an innate curiosity, an openness and acceptance of what is happening right now.

When we are not in a state of mindfulness, we often will appear moody, critical, tense, stressed out, negative, unpleasant, incapable of making good decisions and we hang on to those unpleasant moments that gave us pain.     Our perception becomes warped, and our attention span lingers.

Jon Kabat-Zinn the founder of the Mindfulness-based stress reduction states, “qualities of the mind that support and strengthen mindfulness are acceptance, nonjudging, nonstriving, letting go/letting be, patience, trust, beginner’s mind, and gratitude/generosity, curiosity, kindness and humor”.  

These are some of the things I grew up learning about from the Bible as well.    Grounded in spirituality supports our ability to quiet the mind.    When we talk about Curiosity, we turn inward to the present moment, so we can learn and perceive what is happening fully.    Kindness stands out the most, leaving judgment and harshness behind.    Gratitude/Generosity leaves us with “I have enough” instead of “I don’t have enough”.    When we practice these three things, our brain will shift its focus to peace, contentment and calm.   Instead of driven, in need and discontent.

Acceptance requires we turn actively toward a situation, realizing that it really is the way it is right now, and nothing can change that.    Even though we may not like what’s happening,we are honest enough to say, “this is the way it is for now, and I have accepted that”.     Non-judging really means that we realize there is no stopping what is happening now and even if we could, we will observe it and witness the effect it is having instead.

Nonstriving is a core component of mindfulness.  It means being fully present in the moment without needing to change any of it, at all and without an agenda.     We learn that letting go will often open up a sense of ease, a peaceful calm emotional state.    These are just a few of what you will learn when you begin to study mindfulness.    It can help with chronic pain, inflammation, resilience, habits, depression and anxiety, letting go, and so much more.

We need to make it a daily practice, find inspiration, be accountable and find validation in what you are doing.    I will be posting my classes in the next week.   Thank you for following.  Please feel free to comment below, and I will get back to you within 24 hours.

Resourcefulness

As I walk along the rocky beach, I am reminded that for every season there is a time of shedding off old ways, habits, attitudes that aren’t working anymore and relationships that keep us stuck.       Its a time to retreat, relax and settle into fall and winter.    A time for warm stews, homemade soups and the opportunity to write, quilt, read, bake or whatever it is that enlightens you.

For men it may be working in the shop, doing some yard work or taking time to work on a favorite hobby.    It’s important that we don’t deny those aspects of ourselves that keep us interested, stimulated and the want of needing more.    More of what it is that gives you joy, fulfillment and the desire to not stop.   It’s a time to delve into school, utilizing the brain and finding knowledge for those that may be attending.

I find when life has a constant flow, what you put out comes back and depending on our heart, mindset and energy you will attract more of what you give out.    Someone asked me how I got ahead and made the connections that I do.    “Whose toes did you step on?” they said.   Well I can honestly say in my years of living and working, I have never stepped on or used anyone to advance my purpose, status or get ahead.

Perhaps I should have, but it didn’t seem right that I would use their name to fight my battle, get a job or seize an opportunity unless they suggested I do.    I was surprised by the comment, and realized where it may be coming from, plus an opportunity to share about resourcefulness.     All my life, it has been a gift something that was easy for me.  I grew up being around many types of people, learning how I should act, speak, and treat people.    On those principles and values, I was only myself.

I was never afraid to try, realizing that when I picked up the phone it would either be yes, no or good luck.    It seems I have always attracted attention, regardless of whether I wanted it or not.    However I got what I reacted too every time, which meant I shouldn’t expect anything other than an experience and if the result was positive than I could move on and keep going.   If not, I always ask if there is someone else they could recommend I speak too or come up with another plan.

It also could be a closed door, something that was not meant for us at that time.   Not to say it won’t happen in the future, but for some reason there is a block in our path.  It’s important to stay focussed and re-evaluate at times.    Perhaps its a bit more education, or a topic you need to get more adversed in.    Just stay positive and never give up.    I believe that if it is meant to be it will come again full circle.    Then we have the choice again to step inside or not.

 

The Dragon Slayer

Galileo once said, “You cannot teach a man anything; you can only help him find it within himself.”

The dragon slayer had a melt down this past week, trying to dig herself out of a deep dark hole.   It appeared the dragon she was slaying was a part of underlying self-esteem issue.    An issue that tends to surface when she comes into conflict with anything she wishes to see happy or develop in her own life, while instead watching it happen in others instead.     It was if the dragon slayer was at her worst, instead of the driving force her and the dragon are together, when emotionally connected to the heart, body, mind and soul.

Her spark for activity dwindled into a pit of despair only bringing tears that wouldn’t stop.   Beneath the pit was an aching fear of never being caught.   Caught by a warrior that would whisk her into his arms and patch up every painful scar there was.    A love so strong that every emotional spell would finally be connected to peace, joy and happiness.    The dragon as he lay quietly in wait, for once again the dragon slayer would come back into focus and they would be a united force.

This time would take about a week when a boyish friend approached her, bringing pictures of happiness and jokes that would make her laugh.   Reminding her that she had the tools within to help her gain strength and to overcome the demon that lay in wait.    It wasn’t the great love that she was expecting but the kindness of someone who cared.    He too had been a dragon slayer, focussing so much on work and losing touch with family and friends.    Until one day a wonderful princess won his heart.   Now he is happy, enjoying the love of a family with new challenges instead.

Have you found yourself struggling to get out of bed, or focusing on the activities you once enjoyed?   Do you feel you can relate with the dragon slayer and the abyss of lost emotion that will finally sneak up and eventually with it a huge release?    If you are I ask your to get in touch with me.    Take some rest, and get out a calendar.   The focus of the assignment is rewarding yourself, at least once a week.    Plan in activities that you once enjoyed and make at least 30 minutes once a week to start.     This is what’s important on the journey to recovery.

Dealing with depression can be a struggle, but I am here to help you through the process of letting go and moving forward.    So you can make more effective changes to your life and looking at those deep blocks and issues that could contribute to the source.    No one needs to live in the darkness alone, and can find renewal in pleasure once again.     Embraced by those who care and want to see the best for you.   If you want to set up an appointment you can email me at lovefromtheinside@gmail.com.

Shoebox Project for Women in Shelters

I was honoured when I was asked by Linda Ferguson, a well known Vancouver Island fashion designer, to be this years coordinator for the Shoebox Project in Nanaimo.    The Shoebox Project in Nanaimo is for women in shelters.    Linda started this 4 years ago and has had great success, with last year being Nanaimo’s first time involvement. Wendy Foster came on board and was the first one to make the initiative in the area of Nanaimo.    She and her team were able to receive and to give 63 boxes to local shelters in our area.

The organizations we have been working with are Haven Society and the Nanaimo Women’s Resource Center.     These are both special places that give lots of support and love to the women at risk.     When I was becoming a counsellor I volunteered at the Nanaimo Women’s Resource Center and was able to experience first hand the beautiful community of support, to women they assist.     This year our goal is to give 200 boxes through the generosity of the people who reside in Nanaimo, and surrounding areas.

Lesley Clarke, the Executive Director of Nanaimo Women’s Resource Center stated “that these boxes play a very significant role in decreasing stress while offering love and support”.   When women experience abuse, it significantly alters their self-worth, self-esteem and overall confidence.   There is anger, shame, guilt and a sense of disconnection from the community.    Which is why these boxes help so much in eliminating these emotions and thoughts we have within ourselves.

The Shoebox Project for Women in Shelters was started by 4 women in 2011 from Toronto.   The impact they made was huge and is streamlining throughout Canada and the United States with the #JustGiveLove.     These boxes are a value of $50.00 with new items that help to pamper women that are homeless, suffering domestic violence and whatever else may have them living in a shelter.

It’s not for us to always understand their story but just to know that we are reaching out and offering support along their journey, creating that love factor that we all know changes lives.     I am thankful for my team, Kelsey Botting and Janet Gilmour.   Without them I could not have gotten all of this done, two beautiful ladies with a heart of gold.   I am also grateful for the Nanaimo Chamber of Commerce (where I am a member) and for business to business where I was able to promote this much needed project.

I want to thank all the businesses who have stepped up and are willing to be drop off locations, including the Nanaimo Arts Council who are decorating boxes that will be filled with wonderful donations.   Woodgrove Center for creating a very large box and running a campaign in the mall with the help of Linda Ferguson.  They are truly the love generators behind what makes this successful.

Presently we are looking for drivers and if you can help please email me at nanaimo@shoeboxproject.com.     The campaign runs from November 1 to December 17.   I hope that you will join in your community or start up a group yourself.   I am also thankful to Coast FM for reaching out and for Shaw Cable Rae-Anne & Derek for putting together a media spot, which I am posting here for you to enjoy.

Shaw Cable Interview    When you click on this link you will find a list of drop off locations and a few other delightful items.    Blessings to all as we enter into a time of giving and remembering that Christmas can sometimes be a difficult experience for those that have experienced loss.

Fall Update 2016

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Now that the summer has ended, and the fall is upon us.  I am starting to process the next three months.    I can’t believe how the days just roll by so quickly, something my Mother always warned me about when I was young, and used to say how slow the days went.    I am making the best of the moments I have in the day, to accomplish my dreams and goals.

I have been on the road to recovery, since being diagnosed with chronic daily headaches after suffering a fall 6 years ago, and getting bullied.    I can say that with my desire to get better I have.     Each day is a new learning opportunity, one that allows me to live my life the best that I can and to do it with passion.

One of my goals has been to establish a Wellness Center, which I am now taking the first steps towards.     Love From The Inside Wellness Society will be about promoting wellness to the whole person based on mental, emotional, physical & spiritual; regardless of religion, culture or race.

Our goal is to allow the individual(s) or families access to resources that will promote wellness on a local, provincial, national and global level; while working towards making an impact on issues pertaining to what we want to bring awareness too by bridging the impact.   We will encourage counselling and other alternative practices that promote wellness and healing.

Through workshops that promote and develop skills that will enhance the learner in all areas of their life.   Another goal is to foster community spirit, by providing education and research that addresses community and social issues such as, alleviating poverty, addiction, family violence, social justice, elder abuse, chronic pain to name a few.

This is just a bit of insight, into what we are hoping to achieve in our desire to be more diligent by offering the kinds of services we know will make the biggest difference in people’s lives.     I will share more details when we get the Society approved and operational.    Each day is one of fulfilling a purpose and meeting a need on many levels.

My blog will change with time as I support the ongoing need to bring awareness and educate.     One course I am supporting is my friend & colleague Patrick Bensen, a clinical counsellor from Norway with over 20 years experience.   A United Nations expert in permanent vocational training and European Union’s train the trainer.    The link you can find more information on is:  Multicultural & Intercultural Training

Have a wonderful rest of your week.

Blessings

Trish

Prevention of Elder Abuse

On Tuesday August 30th I will be giving a talk on creating awareness about elder abuse, in Nanaimo at a local care facility.  Having worked with Seniors for 22 years, this September I am passionate about helping in this manner.   They are such a vulnerable population base, and most of the time are socially isolated due to many factors.

ON October 1st Canada will honour National Seniors Day.   A day to honour those who have walked before us and have brought wisdom to our lives.

I also want to let you know about a good group that is way ahead when it comes to the Prevention of Elder Abuse in Canada.   Their link is Canadian Network for the Prevention of Elder Abuse if you are looking to get involved yourself or interested in obtaining more information.

Thank you for your continued support.   I am excited to be working on writing the bylaws and constitution for the Love From The Inside Wellness Society.   This is one area I will definitely focus my efforts in.     Have a lovely week.

Blessings