*Note: Names have been changed to respect the privacy and wishes of the family
Going about our day to day lives, it’s sometimes easy to get so caught up in the routine, tasks, etc that we forget about what matters the most to us….and so, life steps in to give us a swift reminder.
I was playing on the floor with my son when I heard the phone ring. I let it go to voicemail as I am generally not on my phone or computer when we are spending quality time together. After I got the voicemail notification, I got a text message which was strange. Because I got so many notifications, I went to check my phone. The text message say to call asap as something had happened….not a text that anyone wants to receive.
I called my friend and I heard the news. A mutual friend of ours had taken his life. I was in shock. As I sat there, I started to remember the fun moments we had together in our lives. I also felt bad because I hadn’t spoken to this person since the baby was born. I have had intentions of stopping by to see him so Lincoln could meet him however, I never acted on my thoughts.
Death really brings into perspective what’s important in life. I had been worried about the little things; when naps were, what to cook and eat, how to schedule things and had lost sight of what matters most, connection to others.
This reminded me that life is finite and what is here one day (health, success, career, etc) can be gone the next. So, go out and enjoy the outdoors and clean a little less, play with your kids as they grow up so quickly. Call your parents because they care about you so much. Tell people you care about them as you might not get the chance again.
To my friend, thank you for all that you have taught me and all the great times we had together. May you find the peace that you have been searching for.
Just the other day I was asking for a break. I wanted some time for myself, even just for a few hours. I knew I had to schedule something but a couple weeks had past and I still had not made the time. Well, the universe gave me that time.
I was driving home from work and stopped at a red light when suddenly, my car stopped...I tried to start the car again but it wouldn’t start. I waited for a few minutes, in rush hour traffic, with people honking (yes, my hazards were on), tried again, and the car still would not start. Luckily, I have CAA so I gave them a call. CAA was on their way and it would be a 45 min wait. After CAA arrived, I was towed to a garage and suddenly found myself with a couple hours to spare while I waited for someone to come pick me up.
After finding a place to eat, I realised that I was alone. I had asked for time by myself and my wish was granted. I had to laugh as I realised the universe’s trick. To top it off, I had been trying to get together with a friend of mine for some time and it turns out that that was the person that was available to come pick me up!
Later on, a friend asked me why I wasn’t upset that my car broke down. I told them that I had so many things to be grateful for. I wasn’t in an accident, I did not have the baby with me, I had CAA, I realised that I have lots of help in my life and I got a few hours to myself to enjoy a hot meal.
Moral of the story: be careful what you wish for, find the things to be grateful for and laugh at the world
Is there a behaviour that you want to change? Perhaps it’s getting into better shape or eating healthier. Whatever the case, what is stopping you from making the shift?
How long does it take change to happen? Change is not the problem because change can happen in an instant. Maintaining changes over the longterm is more of a challenge. So, what’s the best way to create long lasting changes in behaviour?
A change in priorities.
Think about the last time that you had a shift in priorities and what behaviours changed. I had a huge shift in priorities since my baby was born. Everything from sleep, exercise, diet, business, relationships….almost every aspect of my life experienced changed….overnight.
Others may experience a sudden health or financial crisis for the change to occur. But, you don’t need a crisis to happen in order for you to make changes.
Here’s an exercise for you. Take an inventory of the ‘things’ you do in a day. Categorize the little items into bigger groupings. For example: pack lunch (health), shower and brush teeth (personal care), exercise (health), go to work, drive (work) etc. Then find out where you spend most of your time. You may realise that you are spending too much time on certain areas and not enough with others.
Next, look at what you are doing on your spare time. Are there things you could shift so that you could have more time in others. For instance, if you spend 1 hour watching tv but want to start meditating then you can cut your tv time to half an hour and then fit meditation in.
To shift your behaviours, change your priorities.
Being in the profession that I am in and doing the work that I do has allowed me to see first hand what an excess of perceived stress does to your body and your life. Knowing this, I put into my life, many ways to combat and release my stresses. My best practices being: spending quality time with my family and friends, exercise, journaling, meditation, reading, sleep, good nutrition, massage and regular chiropractic care.
With all these safeguards in place, it’s not often that I feel my stress is unmanageable or “getting to me”. In fact, it’s been years…..until recently. Don’t get me wrong, stress still comes about and short term stressful events will always occur, it’s all a part of life, but how it affects your body can be mitigated.
Recently, I started to notice that little things were effecting me. I was quicker to anger with my family and friends, people were started to annoy me easier at work, I was less patient, and I was having less fun in life. Even playing with my child seemed like it would require too much energy….a huge sign that I was not myself. I had to take time to pause and see how I got to where I was.
It hit me that my safeguards had slowly been falling away and I didn’t notice because the process was gradual. My exercise and sleep have been severely lacking since giving birth. My meditation has gone out the window. This was a practice that I had been doing at least 3 times a week for the past 5 years. All these I had expected to change due to a new shift in priorities i.e. baby. What I didn’t take into account was how I was going to feel having lost some of these.
Now that my son is a little older, sleeping a bit better, etc. It’s time that I start to get back on track and reconnecting with me. I am grateful for the contrast in how I was to how I am now. When things are gradual, it’s harder to notice the day to day changes. It takes a larger gap before we realise the contrast. I also recognise that the frequency that I used to do things may no longer be the same however, the elements still need to be there.
I am grateful for the awareness and the opportunity to change my habits and all the support that I have to do so.
Need help changing? 613-761-1600
Research has shown over and over again that what we seek most is a sense of belonging and connection to others. People live longer when they have a sense of community and that they contribute and matter in some way.
So, why is it that we’re feeling so disconnected, alone and depressed when what we really want is to belong? Fear.
Fear is what cuts off connection to others. We fear what we do not understand. We fear people we don’t understand. We first look for the differences in others before we look at what we have in common.
What are we so afraid of? Researcher Brene Brown says that we fear: being vulnerable, getting hurt, pain of disconnection, criticism and failure, conflict, not measuring up. So, with all this fear, we move away from the very people that we want to connect with and wonder why we are lonely.
What’s the solution?
One often meets his destiny on the road that he took to avoid it.
All the things we fear must be faced. We need to be vulnerable, even if it hurts, especially when it hurts.
Embrace criticism so that we can improve and do better. Teach others how to give criticism so that it’s positively accepted.
Celebrate failure because it means that we had the courage to try.
Go into conflict with a goal of listening and finding a resolution.
Above all, we need to see the communality in all of us and believe in love which is the power that unifies us all.
Want to be part of the solution? Give us a call. 613-761-1600
Are you lacking in courage? Wondering how others seem to have so much of it and how you don’t seem to have any? Stop beating yourself up for not having it and borrow it from someone else.
If you can’t find the courage to do something, look at someone else. Find someone who’s doing what you are afraid to do. Read their story, look at the challenges that they have overcome and that they currently face. Perhaps they have even had some of the same experiences as you have. Borrow their courage!
Sometimes, when we see courage displayed by someone, it inspires it within us. In wake of the #metoo movement, we’re seeing courageous people tell their stories and struggles. This in turn has inspired even more people to tell their stories and we can see how many people have had similar experiences. The first few people who started the movement were courageous and inspired others to be as well. We just want to know that what we want to do is possible.
So, when you’re faced with a lack of confidence, courage, love, strength, etc. borrow it from other people until you have enough on your own. Don’t worry, in doing so and telling your story, you will be a source of inspiration for others. Why? Because courage is contagious and everytime that you choose it, you make others around you a little better and in turn, the world becomes a little braver.
Wnat to meet some courageous people? Come to our monthly workshop. RSVP 613-761-1600
Why is it that we fear change so much? For some people, they fear change so much so that they freeze in their place and can’t move.
The reason for this is because we see change as a threat. Even if the change is something that we want, our nervous system sees it as something that is trying to attack us.
When we’re under attack or the illusion of being under attack, our body goes into fight, flight or freeze mode. This is an old system of protection for our body. It was so that back in the caveman days, if we came face to face with a bear or lion, we could run away or try to fight.
This defence mechanism is in our nervous system to protect us i.e. if we’re being chased, about to be attacked etc. but most of the time, our lives are not in danger.
Change is unknown. If you quit your job, end your relationship etc, there is no guarantee in your mind that it will all work out...even if most of the time, it does all work out. This fear, then activates your flight/ fight and you are scared into staying where you are.
So, how do you keep your system from activating? First, tell your body over and over again that it is not under attack and that it is safe (assuming that your life is not in danger). Next, you need to do the thing that you are scared to do over and over again until your nervous system no longer recognizes it as a threat.
Think back to when change was learning to sit up, stand, walk, ride a bike. Any skill that you’ve learned, you once didn’t know it. The first time might be scary but once you kept doing it, it got easier.
Remember, ships are safest in the habour but that’s not what ships are built for.
Need help finding courage, give us a call 613-761-1600
Studying your behaviours can lead to interesting revelations about your subconscious body. A while ago, one of my patients mentioned that he observed that he collected certain things (flashlights, socks, shoes, etc) and wanted to know what drew him to those objects.
We first examined why he was drawn to buying flashlights and why he had so many of them. After asking about his childhood, we discovered that he was afraid of the dark and light made him feel better. So, now, in adulthood, he collects flashlights.
With that experience, I asked what drew me to some of the things that I’ve been interested in lately. When my son was first born, I was obsessed with babywearing. Babywearing is using wraps, slings, carriers, etc to attach your baby to you instead of having to hold them with your arms. I ended up with far more carriers than I needed or used. It wasn’t until I looked at what babywearing meant to me that I understood why I wanted so many. Babywearing meant freedom for me while still being able to keep baby close. I could put him in a carrier, and still have both arms free to get things done. I could carry him with me where I went and not have to worry. Since my discovery, I have been able to get rid of some of my carriers and only keep the ones I use more often.
What are some of the things you obsess about or have too much of? What do they represent for you? Need help with this? Ask me at your next appointment and we can figure it out together.
Why are your different states important? They dictate how you view a situation and how you react. If you are in a negative state, let’s take anger as an example, then others will feel your anger. Your actions will be angry and you may say and do things that you don’t mean to in your interactions with others. If you are in a state of gratitude, you would have different, perceptions, behaviours, thoughts, etc.
Your energy state also determines how you remember something. If you are in an energy poor, tired, and drained state, when something happened to you, you would remember it as painful or a trauma. If you were energy neutral at the time, your memory would be ok. However, if you were charged and in an awesome state, you would see the gift in the situation. All the events could be the same but how you remember it is based on your energy state at the time.
So what are the different states of energy? They are energy poor, energy neutral and energy rich.
In an energy poor state, the system has no energy and it’s about survival. You need energy coming into the system to help it survive. In the body, this is when there’s tissue death, organs start to break down, pain occurs. In life, it’s when the marriage breaks up, you file for divorce, file for bankruptcy, etc. This state is about surviving for a little longer.
In an energy neutral state, there is enough energy to sustain itself as long as there are no surprises or additional stresses. This is where most of us live. This is about feeling comfortable, control and fitting in. Here, you have a story about something i.e you’re not good enough, tall enough, pretty enough, etc and you can’t go beyond it.
In an energy rich state, there is enough energy that it can give more energy to the system to help it reorganize. There’s energy left over to inspire others and think beyond the culture. Energy rich states means having more resourcefulness.
What state do you live in? Give us a call 613-761-1600
Firstly, I am mandated by the chiropractic college to have a certain about of continuing education hours each year. I have always considered this to be the minimum amount and I take more than is required, every year. This is to ensure that my skills are at the highest levels to support the type of care that I deliver and to serve my patients to the best of my abilities.
I work with people and we are dynamic beings, always moving, changing, growing, evolving and new techniques and technologies are required to adapt to the ever changing needs of a person.
In April, I went to an intermediate and advanced technique workshop and I was conflicted in going. I wanted to go because I was excited to learn and yet I felt guilty because I would be away from my young child for the entire workweek and then the weekend. I hemmed and hawed and signed up for the course. I told myself, that if I were to go, I would need to be fully present because it would have to be worth my time away from my family….and it was.
Firstly, I learned more technical skills to improve the quality of care that I am giving. I built upon what I already knew and further refined care at the higher levels. This itself has made a world of difference.
More importantly, I improved upon myself, the person delivering the care. I realised that I’ve been operating out of habit and on auto-pilot and that I was getting bored. There were moments where I was inspired but it was never long lasting.
During the workshop, I had the chance and was forced to see how I had been operating and given the opportunity to increase my energy levels to operate at a new capacity. The result being, an increased level of presence in the office, renewed joy while working with patients, gratitude for my family and feeling more of who I know myself to be.
When I change myself, and it is a conscious choice to change, and shift my state; I affect everyone that I come in contact with which in turns affects those that others come in contact with. Over time, you never know how far reaching each interaction can be.
Are there areas in your life where you are just getting by? Are there any areas that require more attention or focus? Come to an advanced workshop 613-761-1600
Dr. Amanda is a non-traditional chiropractor who focuses on Neuro-Optimization in Ottawa, Canada.