Having a quiet space and time to contemplate and reflect on our lives is essential to finding our internal peace. I liken it to a feeling of contentment with our decisions, our relationships, and ourselves.
Throughout our lives, we experience moments of distress, exhaustion‚ anxiety and depression. Life can be overwhelming and if something stressful and unexpected occurs, it can feel as though that one incident turns into “the straw that broke the camel’s back”. You may feel overburdened with feelings of desperation and hopelessness. Whether you are conscious of it or not, you need strategies to help you cope and provide optimism for a better outcome. You may also need people to provide support in achieving the best possible state of wellbeing.
An Attitude of Gratitude!
Last week we had a wonderful opportunity to join a spiritual group in Italy and reflect on “Blessings” as a subject.
This led me to reflect on my childhood and consider my awareness of the gift of gratitude and its meaning. I asked myself: “Did I feel gratitude when my Mom fed me? Was it when my Dad played with me? Or was it the complete love and wonder I saw in their eyes when they looked at me?” Gratitude can be expressed as a simple look, nod, smile, and hug or even energetically as a mutual feeling of warmth between individuals.
October is the month notoriously associated with Hallowe’en. For those with children, it naturally conjures up thoughts of costumes, candy, pranking, skeletons, carving pumpkins and trick-or-treating but have you ever stopped to wonder about its origins and why we celebrate? One of the world’s oldest holidays started off very different than what we know it today.
It is widely believed that many Halloween traditions originated from ancient Celtic harvest festivals, particularly the Gaelic festival Samhain, which celebrated their new year on November 1st. Samhain marked the end of summer and harvest and the beginning of winter, a time often associated with human death.
The child absorbs knowledge using no filter
The child is like a "sponge", which "absorbs" everything that is surrounding it. Already Dr. Maria Montessori warned us in the early 20th century that the children in their first six years of life are in an "absorbing" age.
But there is a slight difference in children up to 3 1⁄2 years and older children! The older the child is, the more it begins to question "why." Its brain is sufficiently developed to use a certain degree of discernment. These questions are an indication that cognitive development has initiated to a higher degree and it now starts to filter all the information the child gets. A toddler has not yet achieved this cognitive ability and takes in all the information without any filter. This unfiltered information according to neuro-science and psychologists - is programmed into the unconscious brain and even into the cell structures and form the first programs, patterns and impressions. This imbedded information will act from its level of unconsciousness influencing the persons entire life. To reprogram such information takes years. Therefore, parents and professionals should be very careful what kind of information is given to the child. It is also very important to think about the activities and life styles when children are around.
By now, many of us are participating in our back to school rituals. Even if you don’t have children, the end of summer is often associated with new school beginnings, more structure and activity in our communities. Without the time constraints imposed by school, summer has always been a time for vacation, relaxation, and a season to enjoy extra time with friends and family. However, summer can also create feelings of general tiredness, particularly in regions of excessive heat such as Southern California. Our bodies naturally crave change after a few months. There are physical, mental and social factors at play with the change of seasons that are facilitated by cooler weather and shorter days. These changes can be difficult for some individuals. How can we go through this transition with relative ease? Some of the advice we suggest in our summer blog posts can also apply to the approaching fall season.