As many of your know, I recently gave birth. This was my second labour and after a long first labour, I was not looking forward to doing it again.
When I first started to feel the pain and discomfort of the contractions, I tensed my muscles and shortened my breath in anticipation of the pain. I even started to wish the contractions away (not conducive to giving birth). Deep, down, I knew that this was not the answer because, birth is not usually a quick process and the pain was going to get worse before it got better.
I knew I needed to change my current state so I called a friend of mine who is a doula. Her advice was to invite the pain. I was to picture each contraction as my body giving a hug to the baby. I was to use all the focus and attention that I could muster to fight the urge to tense and instead relax every muscle and allow my body to do what it naturally knew how to do. I was to stop fighting my body….easier said than done.
So, for each coming contraction, I focused on my breath. I focused on expelling out all the air that I could. I told my body to relax. I started with my toes and worked my way up to my face. To my surprise, the pain became more tolerable! It still hurt like crazy but I could do it.
I also noticed that when I was not prepared for a contraction, my instinct was to tense, fight my body and have my mind panic. This brought on more pain which then caused more tension in my body.
As the day continued and the pain got worse, I had to focus more and go internally. I talked to my baby during the birth, saying that we were going to do this together. I told her how excited everyone was to meet her. I surrendered to the pain and trusted that my body knew what to do and how to do it. My body contains all the DNA of my ancestors who’ve birthed children before me and so I can also do it.
It was one of the hardest things I had to do..but it was worth it. Birth was a lesson in persistence, surrender, trust, support...and I never want to go through it again.
Each birth is different and a learning experience and opportunity. What did you learn form your births? Leave a message below.
Do you have fears surrounding giving birth? Give us a call 613-446-6060
Did you know that your body loves you? Some of you may not believe this because you’re sick, in pain or you don’t feel you’re healing from something fast enough. Some of you may have had so many health challenges that you think your body is working against you. But it’s not.
Your body loves you and here is why:
Your body loves you so much, maybe it’s time you loved it back. Need help loving your body? 613-761-1600
Little L is 18 months old and scared of the noises that come from the furnace in the basement. He will play quietly and alone with his toys until the furnace comes on. Once it does, he will drop whatever he’s doing, run over to you and become glued to you or ask to be picked up. After the furnace comes on, he will want you to be a maximum of 1 foot away from him where you could have been in the same room as him before and he would not have minded.
We have told him many times that the noise is the furnace and we’ve brought him over to show him the furnace and he still runs whenever it comes on.
One morning, when we were playing, the furnace came on and he came running over to me again. I did what I usually do, held him and told him that Mommy’s here. This time I added something new. I looked at him and said, today, we’re going to practice courage. I know you won’t understand this right now, but one day you will. There will be things that scare us in life and sometimes we will run away and that will be ok. Running can even save your life. Other times, when your life isn’t in danger, you will stand and stay put despite wanting to run away.
I figure that if I repeat this to him enough times, one day, he may understand. We then walked over, together to the furnace (while it was on) and practiced courage.
FEAR: forget everything and run or FACE EVERYTHING AND RISE
You choose. 613-761-1600
Ever meet someone who’s always optimistic? Even to the point that they can’t see any red lights going off in front of them? And no matter what you say to them, they respond with the fact that the universe will provide for them….even though they don’t have enough money to feed themselves. This is an instance where you can have too much of a good thing.
I’m also not saying that we need to be pessimistic about everything. Also, I do believe that we have opportunities where we are provided for, however, we also do need to be realistic about our situations.
This is where realistic optimism comes in. It is the understanding that there is adversity in your life; be that in your relationships, finances, health, etc. and at the same time, also being optimistic about what’s going on.
That is to say that, you do have the power to change your circumstances. And, if you’re really stuck and can’t change your exact circumstances this moments, you can change the way you think, look and feel about them so that you will take different actions that will lead to different outcomes later on.
Would you like help seeing the brighter side of things and also getting past your roadblocks? Give us a call 613-761-1600
From the moment we meet someone, we are forming opinions on them based on our past and current experiences….even if we aren’t aware of it in the moment. This is because our nervous system is geared towards keeping us alive. If something is dangerous, we must be ready to fight or flight.
We are often quick to label others and put them into different categories i.e. what their clothes say about them, what kind of work they do, if they have kids or not, if they are friendly, safe, intelligent, etc.
Once we label someone, we tend to expect them to behave in a certain way and when they do, this further cements the label that you originally placed on them.
So, one way we can change someone’s behaviour is by changing the label that we have for them. Instead of labeling a child as being hyperactive, perhaps they are energetic. Instead of saying to someone that they are too sensitive, perhaps, they are empathic. If someone daydreams often, it can be said that they have great imagination.
By changing the way we see someone, it gives them the opportunity to also see themselves in a different light.
What labels do you hold on to that keep you down? Throw away those that no longer serve you and change the meaning of your labels to a positive way. Re-write the meaning of what it means to be skinny/fat, poor/rich, etc.
Need help? Give us a call 613-761-1600
Back in December of 2009, I attended a seminar put on by one of my mentors, Dr. Donald Epstein. Here are some questions he asked us to ponder. The answer we get will help shape the quality of our life. Tony Robbins says that the quality of your life will depend on the quality of the questions that you ask.
Below is a talk by Dr. Epstein about asking different questions.
We seek answers because we believe with an answer, we’ll feel or be better. In truth, every answer takes us further from joy.
Life isn’t defined by the answers, but the questions we ask.
Here are a series of questions. For 30 days, read the questions. Don’t answer them. Don’t listen to the answer you will get, for the one answering isn’t the one you want to answer. The universe will create circumstances to create the person who can answer. Don’t look to solve these questions, they’re meant to be lived, not solved.
What were your experiences from doing this exercise? Write them below.
Two days ago, I was cutting up cherries for my son’s snack. When I finished cutting the cherries, I gave him his bowl and went to put away the rest of the bag. When he saw I was putting away the bag, he started to point to the bag and cry. I then told him “focus on what you have in front of you”.....
Then I thought to myself, wow, that’s pretty good advice! My son was so focused on what he was losing, he couldn’t see that he had a bowl of cherries in front of him. He also can’t see that if he ate all the cherries he already had, he may not want more. Nor would he know that if he finished and wanted more, we could just cut more up.
How many times have we focused on what we don’t have instead of what we already do have? When we’re looking to buy a new car, house, etc. be sure to take a minute to say thanks for the house or car/bus/taxi, etc that you already do have.
This is not to say that we don’t strive to reach our goals or to strive for more. We want to be grateful for what we have at the same time as reaching for more.
Gratitude draws upon a certain energy frequency. If you’re not sure what that means. Imagine the last time you were angry at something. Feel your body and how it’s reacting. You may notice a charge or even a discomfort in some area of your body. Now, think of the last time you were grateful for something. You may notice that your body gets lighter, you feel ‘better’ or your energy moves upwards in your body. Play around with the different emotions and see how they affect you.
Want more help? 613-761-1600
Do you remember how exciting it was the first time you rode your bike or drove a car? How about your first kiss or your first day at school?
Now, compare that to your daily drive into work or your 1000th day at school. Why are you no longer excited? We are excited by things that are novel and new. When we’ve done something over and over again, we get bored and stop seeing it as a new experience.
This is also why we keep on seeking new things, we get a lot of energy from newness.
Seeking new adventures is great as it expands your horizons, calls you to grow outside of your comfort zone, etc. However, it is not realistic to seek newness all the time. For example, you can’t keep finding a new job every day or you might not want to find a new partner every day. So, what can you do?
You can find newness in the way you see your day to day. Here are some ways to see something as new again:
Make your experience new to get your excited once again. When you stop seeing the newness, you started seeing people as a concept. You must experienced an experience as novel to gain the energy from it. When everything becomes a procedure, a chore, a task, etc. there is no more novelty.
Want more excitement in your days? Find the novelty in them. Need help? 613-761-1600
When you feel an emotion, there is a gap between when you experience the emotion and when you respond to what you’ve experienced. For some, the gap is smaller than others and that’s where you could see how someone may be labelled ‘quick to anger’.
And how is our response determined? By our past experiences, especially if they were painful events. When an event happens, our reptilian brain labels it as safe/unsafe, good/bad, or pain/pleasure. Thi is to protect you. If another event happens that reminds your brain of a previous painful event, it will right away react in the same fashion as before...even if the circumstances are not the same!
This means that if for example, you had a negative association with a parent growing up, when you meet someone that reminds you of your parent, you will react with the same behaviours, feelings, etc as with your parent.
This is why first impressions are important, once you’ve put someone into a category, good/bad, is late/early, etc. you tend to leave them in that category, especially if you’ve known them for a while. Now, imagine that they’ve changed and are no longer that label...how do you change the way that you’ve labelled them?
The challenge is that your conclusions on an event or person are based on your tools that you used to interpret your situation.
The solution is to change the way that you see a past event. For example, if you had a tough childhood and had to overcome many obstacles, you may now view it is life preparing you to be the amazing person that you are. Life was just building your resilience skills as opposed to life trying to beat you down.
If you change your story about a situation or a person, you change the way you see them. Change the way you see someone and you change yourself and your past.
Need help changing the way you see something? 613-761-1600
In order to become great at something, you will experience failure...and it will happen often. Greatness doesn’t happen in one day, it happens over time. For example, to become a great pianist, it takes years and years of dedication to a craft.
There is no guarantee to greatness either. We’ve all heard of child prodigies in certain areas and they grow up not to be in the same areas later on in life.
You can’t win and become great by staying within your comfort zone either….if this were the case, you’d already be where you want to be. Calculated risks need to be acted upon at the right time.
You can’t be great without taking some sort of action. And once you are aware of the actions steps that take you towards your goal, you get to do them over and over and over again until you get there.
Mistakes are part of the process and can be seen as a stepping stone to your goals. Make the mistakes, fail often and correct along the way.
Being great sounds like a lot of hard work...and it is...so why would be want to do it? Because it allows you to reach your full potential. This makes you feel good, which makes it worth it.
Need help figuring out the best version of yourself? Give us a call 613-761-1600
Dr. Amanda is a non-traditional chiropractor who focuses on Neuro-Optimization in Ottawa, Canada.