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4 months ago · · 0 comments

March 2019 Newsletter

sunset-einstein quote

“The only reason for time is so that everything doesn’t happen at once.”

– Albert Einstein

Dear friends.

Doesn’t it seem that people these days are somewhat preoccupied by time? They often say things like, “I just don’t have enough time”, or “There just isn’t enough time in a day.” In actuality, time is a formula for us to use in order to make things flow a bit more smoothly. Yet, sometimes it seems to cause more stress than flow!

The brain’s cerebral cortex is where thinking, numbers, and formulas are generated. In other words, time! In another part of the brain, the limbic which has to do with memory and feelings, there is timelessness. Take a moment now and recall a joyful, peaceful experience you have had and you will feel your body respond positively. That’s because the limbic doesn’t know real from imagined, or now from then. Cool huh?

Back to the formula of time and its conglomeration of numbers. It really is a tool. If we want to build something, whether it’s a house or a life full of joyful experiences, we have to use that tool. Now, think… doesn’t something else have to happen in order to use that tool to create what we desire? The answer is Yes! Attention, motivation, effort and maybe some enthusiasm need to be present, as well. Instead of time management, which is close to impossible, perhaps we need to begin to manage ourselves. Ask yourself, “What are my priorities?” What am I living for? and ultimately, “What makes me feel truly ALIVE?”

Start counting experiences rather than numbers. Then, as we approach the end of our life, time will become less significant and our life’s experiences will have value beyond measure. Remember to use the formula of time every day to look at Nature’s beauty, to hug someone, to say a kind word, and to laugh!

4 months ago · · 0 comments

February 2019 Newsletter

watercolor image of all 
you need is love words

“All you need is love.”

-John Lennon

Dear Friends

Someone once said “Hate is not the opposite of love . . . fear is!” Think about this for a moment, can you sense the truth in that statement? Try this experiment. Think about something that is frightening for a moment, hold it and notice how you feel. Check your chest, your facial expression and, your shoulders. Now think about someone you love deeply. Hold on to that thought. Did you feel the shift? How does your body feel now? How powerful the position of love is!

Did you know that if you rub your hand over the area on your chest where your heart is located, the hormone oxytocin is released? Try it now! This hormone is often called the “Love Hormone”, and it causes the human organism to bond, and attach. It is automatically released in women after the birthing process, and also while a woman or man is having an orgasm. Oxytocin also increases the ability to have empathy, compassion, and desire. But, wait…there’s more! Something else happens when Oxytocin is abundant – The human body functions at an optimum level. That is, all systems work together perfectly to support and enhance the quality of our life. Why not go ahead and rub your chest now?

We just talked about love, but what about fear? Fear works in the exact opposite way as love. In fact, one study showed that if someone holds the thought of fear for only five minutes, their immune system will be suppressed for as long as six hours! Wow!

If we have a choice to move into love (and we do), why do we hesitate? Doesn’t that hesitation mean we have chosen to feel fear instead? Notice and be a gentle observer of yourself. Don’t just go out and look for love. Instead, find and heal all the barriers you have built up against it. As President Obama once said in a speech he gave in Omaha, Nebraska, “What matters is not wealth, or status, or power, or fame – but rather, how well we have loved.”

Keep in mind the lyrics from yet another Beatles song, “And in the end, the love we take is equal to the love we make.”

5 months ago · · 0 comments

January 2019 Newsletter

charity word art

For last year’s words belong to language and next year’s words await another voice.”
– T.S. Eliot (1888-1995) Winner of 1948 Nobel Prize in Literature

Dear Friends,

Ponder, for a moment or two, what T.S. Eliot’s words mean to you. As I read them, I felt a sense of excitement and hope for a more consciously evolved life.

Recently, I read the book, Evolutionaries by Carter Phipps. The book speaks about like-minded people who believe that each of us individually and all of us collectively are responsible for the evolvement of the human species.

As we think about T. S. Eliot’s quote, we might consider looking back at our own lives and language. Would we make the same choices today that we made a few years ago? Realizing that we have changed, we had no choice but to evolve in and over time. Yet, we do have a choice to quicken that process, if we desire.

Like Evolutionaries, we at Wisdom and Recovery believe that we all can contribute to a more evolved consciousness by being mindfully considerate to all living species, and acting with kindness, honesty, and integrity. Imagine what our lives could be if we held these characteristics as our highest goal.

Some of us must first ask ourselves if there are issues that perhaps are keeping us blocked from living a fully awake and highly-evolved conscious life.

Through this enlightening process, we will eventually be able to proudly contribute our words to be a healthy part of next years voice!

Namaste

6 months ago · · 0 comments

December 2018 Newsletter

“It wasn’t the world that changed, it was the way I saw the world that changed. When I realized that, my entire life changed.”

Dear friends,

While I was preparing to write this month’s newsletter, a few ideas came to mind. Christmas and the holiday season are on everyone’s mind, so my first thought was to write about the origins of Christmas. As I began to research this, what I read was rather disturbing. It certainly was not the uplifting message I had intended to send.

The second topic idea that came to mind was consumerism, which seems to pervade the holiday season. Along with that often comes the problem of figuring out what to get for whom. That topic, somehow, didn’t feel right either.

The third subject I contemplated was the “Son of God” versus the “God of Sun” conundrum.

The blending of Pagan and Christian rituals brought me back to my first topic, and some of the same information regarding the origins surfaced in my research.

Finally, I thought of who actually reads this newsletter – You. All of you have in some ways touched my heart and soul.

So this holiday season, I decided to share with you, a list of my favorite reminders of the beauty you all hold within. At Wisdom and Recovery, we understand the power of positive thinking and affirmations. As you know, with time and repetition, we truly can rewire our brains and begin to see the world through new eyes.

Please consider printing this list and frequently read the affirmations that speak to you.

Namaste.

Believe in yourself.
Anything is possible.
Inside of you, there is a miracle.
Have the courage to be yourself.
Your uniqueness is your gift.
Make peace with your past and let go.
Be kind to yourself and others.
You have abilities and talents.
Never give up trying.
Believe in your dream.
Every situation presents an opportunity.
There’s something great waiting for you.
Laugh.
Listen to your feelings.
Find your passion.
Be creative.
Open yourself more to nature.
Be honest.
Love.
Respect yourself and others.
Forgive
Be prepared to change

7 months ago · · 0 comments

November 2018

 

walking toward light in forest

“There, but for the grace of God, go I”

-John Bradford, English reformer

Dear friends,

One gray, windy, and rainy day in Portland on my way to the office, I was stopped for a red light and noticed a woman on the sidewalk. Her face was old and red and she wore a tattered rain slicker. She was sitting on a small piece of luggage and eating green grapes out of a plastic bag. An aged man was standing a little closer to the curb holding a sign that read, We’re hungry! Please help!

How many of you have seen something similar? No matter what your thoughts may be, try not to judge them. Just notice them and be aware that their life is hard. It is one that we truly can’t understand.

I first heard the quote for this month’s newsletter many years ago. It impacted me in a significant way. Soon after hearing the quote, I happened to be at a playground with my son Seb, who at the time, was only about 2 years old. I saw a young woman pushing a child on a swing. She had a cigarette in her mouth and a beer in her hand. Looking at her face and her hair, she looked familiar, a little like I used to.

As I reminisced about my young adulthood and the recklessness I had exhibited, the quote “There, but for the Grace…,” came back to mind. The message – Do not judge- became clear because that woman could easily have been me.

How many of us have made choices that could have sent us in a downward spiral? Some of us have been through that experience and thankfully recovered.

Thanksgiving consists of two words: One is “Thanks!”, and the other is “Giving!” Maybe this year, if we are able to have an appreciation for all we have, we can also shift our minds slightly and think of the following phrase: “While I give thanks for having so much, I can perhaps give something to someone who might have much less”.

Happy Thanksgiving!

8 months ago · · 0 comments

October 2018

heart in hands

Healing the World One Heart at a Time

– excerpt from the book, Love for No Reason by Marci Shimoff

Dear Friends,

After reading Al Gore’s book, An Inconvenient Truth in 2006, I began to notice more and more businesses “going green”. I wondered what that particular phrase really meant. I found an answer by reading an article at www.savetheworld.com.

According to their definition, “going green” means finding better ways of doing simple things in order to save the world and its environment. Examples are recycling, using less gas and electricity, buying organic, even planting a tree! When I think of the word green, I see trees, grass, and plants, all which are present on our earth to sustain animal and human life.

Loving and caring are matters of the heart. Eastern medicine and philosophy teaches us that there are Seven Chakras (energy clusters) that run up and down the body. Each Chakra has an associated color. The heart is one of the Seven Chakras and its color is green. That makes perfect sense to me, as I believe it will require a profound love to heal the planet we live on. Mother Nature, much like the mother we were born to, nurtures and takes care of us.

However, there comes a day when we realize we must take care of her. In order to love and care at such a high level, we must first turn within, tapping into our own resources. When that time comes, some of us might find we have a heavy heart, most likely as a result of some of life’s pain and betrayals. In her song, Every December Sky”, Beth Nielson Chapman wrote the lyrics, “How heavy the empty heart, how light the heart that’s full”.

At Wisdom and Recovery, we focus on working through our pain and healing our wounded heart chakra. When we accomplish this, we will have an abundance of love, compassion, and peace to bring to the world.

10 months ago · · 0 comments

September 2018

fall trees

The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.”

– Franklin D. Roosevelt, from his first Inaugural Speech (1933)

Dear Friends,

Most of us have heard this famous quote. What meaning does it hold for you? One interpretation might be, “If I focus on the fear, everything just gets scarier, but if I focus on my courage, I can probably handle it all.” I think I take Roosevelt’s statement a little more literally.

We all know that fear is a natural feeling and it certainly has its purpose! Doesn’t it signal us that something is going on that we need to pay attention to? Sometimes feelings of fear are for our safety, and sometimes for our emotional well being. Perhaps you may need to leave a situation or set a healthy boundary. Feeling fear usually means that we need to take action. Yet, so many times, we don’t take any action. We just continue to feel fearful, and eventually, it acquires a new name…anxiety!

Our body functions perfectly to take care of us and keep us safe. When we experience fear, our adrenal glands are stimulated. This is a natural process, often indicating there is danger present. Our stress hormones cortisol and adrenaline kick in, causing a flight or fight response.

However, here is the scary part – fear of fear itself. Often we don’t fight or run away, we just sit and ruminate. Our heart rate goes up, and our breath quickens. Our body is getting prepared to do something that, we are not necessarily going to do. This can cause a series of problems for your body, one of which is adrenal fatigue syndrome.

In as early as 1998, The Congressional Caucus on Stress Prevention determined that 90% of disease is caused or complicated by stress. Many clients come to Wisdom & Recovery with symptoms of stress and anxiety.

When they talk about situations in their lives, presently or from childhood, I can see how their bodies have suffered from this chronic stress. Very few clients come to me with stress issues without also having some type of physical dis-ease as well. The two seem to go hand in hand.

When we feel anxious, one of the first suggestions by experts is stress management. Examples are physical exercise, breathing exercises, massage, hypnotherapy and/or mindfulness. Mindfulness is being aware of your thinking and redirecting it away from thoughts of impending doom or danger. At Wisdom & Recovery we teach clients not to see themselves as victims of life, but instead how to utilize 20 Concepts to deal with life’s difficulties.

The only fear we have is indeed fear itself, especially when it has manifested to the point of anxiety. So take a moment now, take a deep breath and drop your shoulders. You have just reduced the level of stress hormones in your body. Since we now know how healthy it is to reduce these hormones when we can, let’s do it again!

11 months ago · · 0 comments

August 2018

tranquil sea

“Till death do us part.”

– from the Book of Common Prayer (1549)

Dear friends,

A few years ago, I sat next to a woman who is near and dear to my heart. She was grieving the sudden and tragic loss of her husband. The church was standing room only, and it was filled with family, friends, and co-workers. So many people loved this man and his family.

There were candles and flowers, music and prayers. Even though no one spoke a word of English, it really didn’t matter. The ceremony transcended words. What occurred was a ritual of LOVE.

All cultures, current and ancient, perform ceremonies from birth to funerals, from coming of age to marriage. Is it instinct that compels us to gather together and share our grief, our joy? It appears that the human being is a species that is energetically “hard-wired” to gather and bond.

The day after the funeral, I went to spend time with another woman who is near and dear to me. She was also in a church with candles, flowers, music, and prayer. She was getting married and again the room was filled with friends and family. All of them coming together to share in a different and significant ritual. What is so striking is that both sacred ceremonies were woven together with the threads of a profound LOVE.

Integration is what we call “The Core” of the 20 Concepts, as it is such an important part of the work we do here at Wisdom and Recovery. By bringing together what is seemingly the opposite, we can visualize something different. This process can provide a calming insight, and the wisdom gained will bring us a peaceful feeling.

I felt very blessed to have been in the midst of such amazing transitions on each of those two days. And while one was of loss and the other of gain, the outpouring of love cradled all.

12 months ago · · 0 comments

July 2018

 

“Did I Matter?”

– Excerpt from The Charge by Brendon Burchard

Dear friends,

This month we look at the third and final statement Brendon Burchard says we will ask ourselves at the end of our life, “Did I matter, and make a difference?”

Anyone who has ever attended a class, workshop or group at W&R is familiar with the statement “Live Large”. When we live large expansive lives, with joy, awareness, and enthusiasm we contribute positive energy to all we come in contact with and therefore to the world at large. You don’t have to be involved in a volunteer position or in a helping career to make a major contribution (although that can be exciting and rewarding).

Several years ago I had a female client who had just found out her husband was going to go to prison for an extended period of time due to a heinous crime he had committed. She had no prior knowledge of this and I could see her grief was tremendous. She was so distraught, she questioned her will to live.

A week later, during our session, she told me that something had changed for her. She had gone to the grocery store and as she was walking out, a man held the door open for her and said, “Let me get that door for you, beautiful”. She was shocked. She told me that it made her realized that in the 30 years she was married, her husband had never once told her she was beautiful. She was certain that no one else in her life had said those words to her either. She told me that after leaving the store, she sat in her car, looked at herself in the mirror, and started to cry. It was at that moment, she decided she wanted to live, divorce her husband and start a new life.

You never know when a smile or an act of kindness will change someone’s life. I doubt if that gentleman ever knew how much he mattered that day, and what a difference he made in one desperate woman’s life!

So live fully, love openly and don’t hold back. By doing this, it’s guaranteed that you will matter and make a difference.

Namaste

June 2018

1 year ago · · 0 comments

June 2018

“Did I love fully, and not hold back?”

-excerpt from The Charge by Brendon Burchard

Last month we explored the first of Brendon Burchard’s three important questions, “Did I live fully?” This month we look at the second question, “Did I love openly and not hold back?”

Do you love openly and not hold back? The answer to this question is likely rooted in the past regarding our relationship with our first love figures…our parents. Maybe in your family environment, love was conditional. For example, if you did things according to your parent’s wishes, you were loved. If you made different choices and/or made mistakes, it may have felt like love was being withheld. If that was the case, you may have learned that love hurts.

I had a client who told me that when she displeased her mother, her mother would stop speaking to her and refuse to look at her, sometimes for days at a time. My client expressed how hurt she was when her mother withheld her love as a form of punishment.

As children, we cannot withhold love. Our brains won’t allow it, because attachment is our number one survival technique. It will always override any impulse to withdraw or recoil. Over time, if loving hurts and that neurological pattern of association is established, we may find that later in life, we have a difficult time loving openly and find ourselves holding back.

At Wisdom and Recovery, we work diligently to create new neuro-pathways (memory) by learning a healthy and safe way to love. This results in a profound, wise and mature love. When feeling the true emotion of love, our bodies come alive and function at peak levels. Lowering stress hormones and increasing all of our “feel good” hormones, allows our immune system to function at optimum capacity, thereby giving us an enhanced experience of life!

If you think you are holding back due to life’s betrayals, you may want to work on changing your thought patterns to be able to love more openly, which can result in living more fully!