My father in law is a professor at the University of Ottawa and is nearing the end of his teaching career...my suggestion was that he teach until my baby reaches university but he did not think this was practical...haha.
His birthday happened to fall on a day where he had a night class so we decided to surprise him by bringing our son to watch him teach. Since it was a night class, we had both worked all day and it was a rush home to get there in time. My husband even wondered if perhaps we should go on another day as we were busy, we’d keep the baby up past his bedtime, we didn’t have parking downtown, we hadn’t eaten yet and we were already running late by the time I got home.
But, I was determined that we go so off we went. Baby L was crying in the car the entire way, we encountered traffic and sure enough, it took us 20 mins to find parking and then we had to walk to the class. Needless to say, there were several times where I wondered if this was a good decision….but we persisted on.
We showed up to class (late) and surprised him and boy was he surprised! It was a short visit as we had interrupted his class and then we were off to go back home.
The next day, we got a phone call from Dad and he was so happy that we made the visit. He said it was a moment he would remember for the rest of his life. What an honour it was to be able to do something so meaningful for someone. For us, we showed up to say happy birthday, for him, it meant much more.
You never know the impact you will have with one random or not so random act of kindness. So be kind, do nice things for others and you never know how it can affect someone.
When was your last random act of kindness? Comment below.
We all want to feel that we are important, appreciated and that we matter in some way to this world. While we may want to feel appreciated, what allows us to actually feel it?
Because we all have different life experiences, hurts, cultures and circumstances, our nervous systems are uniquely wired to fit us. What may cause one of us pain may cause another one of us joy.
If we want to feel appreciated, how important would it be to know how we feel appreciation? Or receive appreciation? Super important! Because others might be trying to let us know that they appreciate us but we aren’t receiving the message.
My husband and I have different communication styles for love and appreciation. For him, his nervous system prefers that you tell him in words. I appreciate you, I love you, you matter to me and you are important.
For myself, my nervous system is more attuned to behaviours and actions. I.e. my husband brings dinner home after a long day or work so we don’t have to cook, he let me sleep in by looking after the baby, etc.
Knowing how each of our nervous systems is programmed is helpful because while I may do lots of actions to show my husband that I care, he may not interpret it that way without my also telling him.
Check in with yourself. What do you need to feel loved? Actions, thoughts, behaviours, words? Observe how you communicate to others in different relationships.
Write below what you observed!
Most often, we wait for special occasions to give thanks. Perhaps it’s around a holiday such as Thanksgiving or Christmas, however, giving thanks is something to be practiced all year round.
The more you notice that you are grateful for, the more things you will have to be grateful for.
Why should we be grateful? Research studies have shown that gratitude improves your health. People had less depression, lower blood pressure, more energy and greater optimism when they were grateful. Another research team found that positive emotions such as appreciation significantly lowered levels of cortisol...a hormone often related to stress.
For about a year, it was a practice of mine to write down 3 things every morning that I am grateful for. I think it’s time for me to go back to this.
Here are some other ideas on ways to give thanks
Write below what you are grateful for in your life!
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Last week I was having a hard time with my son. He was cranky, whining and throwing temper tantrums. It was 8am and he had already had 3...one because Mommy wouldn’t follow the garbage truck around the neighbourhood with him.
When we were in the car, he was screaming and crying. I was at my limits and was about to yell back when I saw a car in front of us with 2 dogs with their heads hanging out the window. This reminded me of a video I once heard from Abraham-Hicks.
Q: Why do dogs risk getting bugs in their eyes, sticking their heads out of car windows?
A: Because the contrast of the bugs in the eye is a small price to pay for the exhilaration of that ride….exactly the way you felt when you knew there would be contrast and you said the ride is going to be worth it.
Here is the video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LI6qtppejWY
In that moment, my anger and frustration turned into laughter. The bugs in my eyes: the temper tantrums, sleepless nights, early mornings, etc are nothing compared to the joy of watching this kid grow, learn, the snuggles and love.
I am grateful for the reminder that I needed in that moment. Also, to remind myself to look beyond the bugs and at the fun ride.
Have you been too focused on the bugs? GIve us a call 613-761-1600
There’s a popular belief that you should “fake it until you make it”. This is often seen in the personal growth world. If you don’t feel happy, you are asked to put a smile on your face until you feel happy. If you are in financial trouble, and want to be rich, you are to pretend like you are rich and follow rich/successful people until you become what you want. However, this is not the most authentic route.
Because you are not being true to your authentic self. Let say you wanted to be successful and you started reading books on success, following successful habits, doing the same things that your mentors do…. who are you being when you are doing this? Everyone else but you.
You are being someone other than who you are. Don’t get me wrong, there are lessons that you can learn from reading about others and skills that might work for you. But not everything that someone does, will be right for you and your current situation. Success comes in many paths, you need to find one that is congruent with you.
Instead, why not try being authentically you and speak about your journey until you make it? Want to run a successful business and you just started? Speak about your passion for what you do. Speak about your skills, your personal story and how excited you are to bring your product/service to the world. Talk about the difficulties, the ups and downs. When you are vulnerable and show people who you are, they will show up for you.
Show how you get through struggles, how you push past your fears and how you stand up for yourself and others. That’s what people will gravitate to. It requires more courage and vulnerability and it’s not fake.
Speak about your journey, not just the good parts but the parts that make you grow and you will achieve way more than you believe.
Want support along your journey? 613-761-1600
*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.
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.
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.
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
Similar to leaving your fingerprints everywhere you go, you also leave a trace of your emotions.
I was watching a cooking show called Master Chef and one of the cooks was getting frustrated because his dish was not going as planned and the time was running out. One of the judges came by and told him that he was cooking with anger and showed him how it showed up in the food he was making. His pasta was ripping and smushed up. He was putting his anger into his food and the person who ate it, would then receive the emotions.
This happens when we cook at home as well. If we’re tired from a long work day and come home, the way we chop our food, the way we stir our dishes, etc. will also be transferred into our food. When our family eats it, they will feel that way also.
This is the same in all other aspects of your life. If you are angry when you get home, what emotional blueprints do you leave behind? When you cook, clean and interact with your family what emotions are present?
Take note and if you are not happy with what you’re leaving, change your state. Perhaps try cooking with gratitude and love. See how this affects your food….and in turn your life.
I did this experiment personally as well. I was getting tired of pumping milk for baby Lincoln several times a day while at work and was starting to think of it as a chore. One day, while I was pumping, I thought, what else could I be doing while I’m pumping to improve upon this experience? I came up with, I could infuse gratitude into this experience. So, I thought of all the people and things in my life that I was grateful for. I thought of how pumping milk provides nourishment and comfort to my child and how many people can’t or struggle to do this. By the end of my session, I was so happy for this experience. I know that this milk he drinks will be even better than the previous.
What can you do to change your emotional blueprint for yourself, those around you, your community, and all of humanity. Leave your comments below.
Dr. Amanda is a non-traditional chiropractor who focuses on Neuro-Optimization in Ottawa, Canada.