Things I learned…

Several days ago I shared the helpful video I had the good fortune to run across. It was an interview with Jennifer Kolari and can be found here.

I’m still thinking about some things she shared that impacted me most.

I did take notes but they are in the form of phrases, just enough to remind me of the thoughts I didn’t want to forget. I won’t be able to share the clear or complete explanations contained in the video. I refer you back to the video for that wealth of information. (This is my disclaimer: much hereafter is on me, the author can’t be blamed for any issues or misunderstandings. I do want to give her credit for the good parts though.)

One of the first significant phrases was “your body keeps the score”. There are many reasons why our brains do not retain memories, especially of traumatic events, but our bodies remember everything Jennifer says. I have never thought about it quite like that before (stored in the body rather than in the brain) but I have always been convinced that some part of me does remember all the things I don’t or won’t.

Another point, in regard to the out of proportion reactions we often have to people, situations, comments etc. — we need to find healing before we can learn how to respond rather than react. I totally get this. I’ve been working on it in my life for quite some time and lately have seen positive changes in my thoughts and actions. I appreciate what she is about to say on how to go about doing this.

Jennifer says “to heal it you’ve got to feel it.” I agree, and to do that we have to give ourselves permission to feel our emotions. Most of us have learned to push down and bottle up our feelings. Typically, over time the feelings fester and eventually erupt into something much worse than they were originally.

So here’s the part I’ve not heard expressed quite this way. She says we feel love with our heart and we feel fear with our gut. I guess I haven’t really thought about the heart response because the feelings there would be positive and pleasant. I have definitely noticed negative changes in the gut though. When I’m feeling anxious things definitely do not feel pleasant in my digestive area.

She says one of the reasons for this concept to be plausible is due to neurons.

Apparently both the heart and the gut have neurons, who knew. I did a little internet research and here’s what I found.

According to several sources, including sciencemag.org the gut contains millions of neurons and is directly connected to the brain. The vagus nerve is one of the largest nerves carrying messages back and forth at a dizzying rate. The site linked above is as recent as 2018. If we feel fear or anxiety there will be a reaction in the gut. For some of us it morphs into painful intestinal disorders and other similar diseases.

The heart similarly has a large number of neurons but it also has it’s own nervous system and brain. Sometimes called the little brain according to heartmath.org. In 1991 a scientist made this discovery. The heart and the head brain are also sending a dizzying number of message back and forth.

Wow! I have to say this little bit of exploration done in order to speak intelligently to Jennifer’s comments regarding the gut and the heart, has opened up a whole new world of information. It’s calling out to me, to look into it more and more thoroughly.

Bottom line for the original subject of this post; to be emotionally healthy it helps to understand how the heart and gut are tied to our thoughts and memories. We feel love in our heart, we feel fear in our gut. When we react to people rather than respond, which part of our body is involved? Most often it will be fear, the gut. The next question is what happened to us to cause this reaction? How is it tied to our early life, what traumatized us. A dog? Lost? Abused? What?

Jennifer’s point is that if we can figure out the originating event and allow ourselves to feel the irrational fear it will lose it’s power over us and we can move on. Feel the fear of the dog, the bully, the dark, whatever it is.

Here’s a little teaser about the heart brain.

I’m not sure if I have been able to stay on subject well enough to make sense but I hope so.

I think the main take away is that our emotional well being affects our physical well being. After that, it becomes a vicious cycle. Learning to read the signs and figuring out what to do to alleviate/repair issues and memories, can be life changing.

Check out the interview and the other links to learn more about this fascinating subject.

The Superpower of the Calm Technique

I just watched the most amazing and helpful video podcast I’ve seen in a long time and I just had to share. It’s called The Superpower of the Calm Technique with Jennifer Kolari. I like learning how to do life better and how deal with triggers and reactions. This was so helpful.

She is qualified, wise, and articulate. Such a educational and eyeopening experience listening to/watching what she has to say about learning to respond rather than react. Conflicts in a relationship will loose their steam if we practice her techniques. They’ve done some role plays to demonstrate the way it will work. It was interesting to see how the calming influence changed the dynamics even in a pretend situation. Very cool.

Some of the concepts she presents I`ve kind of heard before but she explains things with new information I’ve not heard and it all makes such good sense.

Carey Nieuwhof introduces it this way – Jennifer Kolari on How to Deal with Irrational People, Customers and Team Members, and the Superpower of the CALM Technique.

Usually Carey`s interviewees have written a book but they didn`t talk about it this time although she has written at least one. In a YouTube search I found she has a lot of content related to parenting although she does a lot of corporate consulting as well.

I’m positive you will find this helpful in life’s situations if you are into good emotional health and productive relationships. Check it out.

This and that August 14, 2021

So, first off this morning, I’m catching up on sites I follow on YouTube. This particular guy is prolific and it’s very easy to fall behind on his channels.

I love the video I’m about to share and I think you will love it too.

The creator of this series is a Hollywood producer, he has worked on shows like Entertainment Tonight and other shows you may recognize. I can’t think of them all at the moment but I can tell you this… he knows how to do a good job.

He is not just a producer, he also a writer working on the script for an outer space type movie that doesn’t yet have a name.

While researching to make sure his script is production ready he formed a connection with an astrophysicist who, it turns out, is excited about his project. They clicked as like-minded people even though they work in vastly different disciplines. Out of this unlikely friendship they’ve created another video project, totally unrelated to the original film idea.

This explanation may be clear as mud but if you watch their first introductory video explaining how they met and what they are trying to do, it will make more sense.

They have many videos in the new series, already edited and ready to go. This lets us know it’s not a bright idea that will fizzle out after a couple of episodes.

These guys are interesting and funny. They have good chemistry and are relaxed with each other, which makes the watching experience enjoyable. The content is excellent and that makes it even better.

I enjoy listening to these guys and I’m very much looking forward to more. They have a new release scheduled for Saturday mornings, 6 am California time.

Check this out. Jeff and Mike

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Mike is currently on a road trip that started just this morning, well technically he left home last night but couldn’t have gone far. The idea of the trip is to share grassroots America with his fellow countrymen as well as the rest of the world. He’s hardly left home and is already posting short clips on some of his other channels.

This guy is a Type A personality with ADD. He has new ideas popping out everywhere… but he produces and he’s interesting to watch.

At least many of us think so.

He has his detractors like most everyone else on line these days. I’ve heard it said of leaders… if everyone loves you – you’re not doing it right. He must be doing something right.

I’m sure I will share more from this guy. He has a bunch of other channels, with different focus and goals in mind. He also has several episodes he does with his mom. She is an interesting lady and has an exceptional story to tell.

But that will be a post for another day.

Oops, I see he just posted another video on this channel about his mom, must go watch it.

There’s a good chance you will see more from me later on.

Happy Watching and Reading

Reading and enjoying August 11, 2021

The person who really wants to do something finds a way; the other person finds an excuse. — Author Unknown

This was the opening quote in chapter three of the book I am currently enjoying (I’ll share it in a bit) and it resonates with me. So much so that I need to camp on this thought for a moment and while I’m doing that I need to record some thoughts.

It resonates because I’m wrestling with this very thing. Ideas are causing a ruckus in my head and I’m asking myself if I will step outside my comfort zone and find a way to do them or will I listen to the excuses and walk away. I’ve spent years mulling over these ideas in different forms.

In a way, this quote showing up now is validation for the steps I’m taking.

Chapter three is talking about excuses but the true subject of the book is prayer. The kind of prayer Diane Moody, the author, has in mind is conversation with your best friend.

I’ve been in conversation with my best friend about these wild ideas, and many other things too, and He seems to be encouraging me to get on with it and make it happen.

Why would I do this thing I’m alluding to?

There are two sides to it. One is to help me grow personally, I definitely need it if I want to have useful years. The other is be an encouragement to others. There are enough negative voices in our world, we need more positive ones.

This quote about finding a way is especially relevant for me right now. Mainly because, earlier today I uploaded a picture to my site created yesterday on locals.com. Putting a picture out there for the world to see is a big deal for this camera shy blogger… admitting to being out there is an even bigger deal. Up until now, I have been trying my best to fly under the radar. My Face Book profile picture is a lilac bush and has been for years. Things are slowly changing.

I haven’t posted to the new site yet, I’m still in the initial set up stages. Maybe this could be part of the first post. Maybe. We’ll see.

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As promised, here is the book I am reading. Diane Moody is down to earth, easy to read, and what she has to say is worth hearing.

Confessions of a Prayer Slacker (Second Edition) 

With over 600 “Five Star” reviews.

Let’s face it. Most of us are clueless when it comes to praying. Why is that? And how come we’ve never done anything about it?

In Confessions of a Prayer Slacker, author Diane Moody traces her own personal prayer journey with a touch of humor and a healthy dose of transparency.

‘I want my readers to stop the merry-go-round of prayerlessness, quit acting like a bunch of spiritual babies, and get serious about this thing called prayer. Without it, we’ll never experience the warm, one-on-one relationship God desires to have with each one of us.

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It looks like this post has turned out to be a bit of a teaser since I have neglected to give the name of the new site over on locals.com

That’s OK because I still have some work to do to make sure it performs like it’s supposed to.

There are more things to be said about the subject anyway so another time works well.

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We have no new books today but maybe tomorrow. I did look.

In the meantime,

Happy Reading

I don’t write about politics, but …

I don’t write about politics but… I spend a lot of time paying attention.

I could be wrong, but I’m pretty sure I’ve gained a number of followers based on my frequent presence on many of the popular sites. I expect they are disappointed to find I am not a political voice, never mind a loud one, in this digital world.

It takes a lot of work to be effective as a voice and my heart is not in it. I’m a staunch supporter though. Sites need subscribers, views (lots of them) and likes, to be noticed and taken seriously in the digital world. Not only that but voices need supporters to give them the courage to continue on in a place where someone wants to shut them up.

The beauty of a country where free speech is taken seriously; we are able to freely voice our thoughts and opinions, right or wrong. There seem to be bullies wanting to take away this right.

I follow dozens of sites but who I listen to most often, keeps changing. Mostly because of big tech censorship. There are certain things conservative voices are just not allowed to talk about. If they do they will be booted off any and all of the mainstream platforms.

That’s why things keep changing. People keep disappearing. The message doesn’t disappear though. New voices keep popping up, jumping into the fray, looking for the truth someone seems to want to keep from getting out. It used to be fairly easy to identify the voices, there were so few. Now they are multiplying like rabbits, which is a very good thing in these unprecedented days of censorship. We-the-people are noticing and saying hey, wait a minute! What is going on here?

My question in all of this is Why? That is a huge question.

There are a number of free speech replacement platforms under construction but it takes a lot of time and energy to have them working at a level even close to the efficiency of well established sites. It looks like locals.com and Rumble are making good progress with the investment interest they have been able to generate for their ideas. Dave Rubin of The Rubin Report is behind locals.com. He is a mover and shaker with a lot of great connections. It looks like he has a good chance at making it work.

I don’t see eye to eye with Dave Rubin on all of his opinions and positions; we are both OK with that. He is a voice of sanity in a world full of non stop yelling and I appreciate what he does and what he is trying to do.

I’m attaching one of his videos. I need a picture to dress up this post.

An introduction to a character I’ve just been talking about seems wise too, and besides, he is spending time with a sane politician about the very censorship I have been going on and on about. Adding this interview here seems like a good plan to me.

I have lots more to say on this whole subject but I’ll save it for another day when I feel inspired to share how I really feel about all of this.

Books may be the subject of a post, yet today. Now that I have this one off my chest I’ll finish my current read and do some browsing.

Later, y’all

This and that July 22, 2021

I have no new suggestions today. Some days are just like that and I’ve decided I’m OK with it.

I think my goal for the moment needs to be – reduce the line up of books waiting to be read.

It’s gradually gotten out of hand and I’m finding it overwhelming, if I’m being honest. I can hear someone saying – it took you long enough. What can I say. I’m a sucker for books 🙂 Anyway, I purposely haven’t done a deep dive today looking for bargains.

Moving on,

The last number of weeks I’ve spent a significant amount of time watching podcasts and while I’ve enjoyed them I’m realizing there is a down side to this kind of indulgence. Many (not all) of the sites I’ve subscribed to are built around the state of world news. Between opinions and an over abundance of information there comes a point where enough is too much. I feel weighed down, and distracted. There are other things requiring my attention and I haven’t been able to do them justice.

This blog has been affected the most by this stealing of reading/writing time. My mind feels foggy and empty. It takes a good amount of thinking time to have something to say. It takes input too. The trouble with the podcasts is the political subject matter. I don’t write about politics and the abundance of input produces no fruit in my world.

Reading, on the other hand, always spurs some kind of usable thinking.

I’m going on a podcast diet, cutting way back on time spent and it’s helping. With more time devoted to reading, the fog seems to be lifting enough to make comments.

During last nights post, I found I’d inadvertently started a new read with the novella belonging between books 1 and 2 in the Culper Ring series. I was too far into it to avoid the spoiler so I went ahead and finished it. Going back to the beginning, I’m now half way through book one and while the novella has given away one aspect of the ending it hasn’t spoiled the whole book for me. It is still a good read with lots of unexpected action.

Another decision in the back-to-reading restrictive diet was concerning my TBR list of neglected Non-fiction downloads.

Earmarking an hour devoted to Non-fiction reading seemed like a reasonable way to make some headway. The Power of Writing It Down is my pick for current read and I’m almost to the end of the first chapter.

This read definitely takes more work, that’s for sure. The author packs every single page full with thoughts, concepts, and information. A number of things stood out for me, right from page one.

I need time to chew on them before I can make comment.

There was one thought towering above the rest, though.

Research shows that thought patterns and tasks performed thousand of times create a rut or neural pathway and without conscious thought the mind automatically goes there. It’s discouraging to think that without thought these ruts lead us to unhealthy places. On the plus side: research also shows that with conscious choosing of different, healthier paths, performed enough times, over time they can overwrite and replace the old unhealthy paths.

This idea resonates with me more than usual. I think it’s because, even before reading this book, I’ve found myself practicing new patterns of thought and actions this summer. I’ve noticed myself making different decisions and choices and I’m pretty happy thinking about what it means going forward. I’ve been praying for healing and it appears to be on the way.

Read and current reads

Happy Reading y’all

This and that part two July 14, 2021

I was talking about plants in part one but that isn’t what I’ve spent the most time thinking about today. More than plants I’ve been thinking about a new podcaster someone told me about the other day. He has a number of channels started and has been posting short videos on most of them.

This fellow is personable, interesting, animated, and funny. He knows how to supply great content since he is a Hollywood producer in real life. He has a different focus for each channel. There are four or five of them and I’ve subscribed to them all.

So today he was posting short clips from the Grand Canyon in Arizona. It is beautiful. The coloring in the clip I’ll share with you is amazing.

This first one is the link for the story he promised in the last clip.

This next is the first beautiful clip I promised above. Not sure how they ended up in the wrong order but that’s the way things go sometimes. Enjoy the beautiful view.

His name is Michael, I’m sure he’s mentioned his last name somewhere but I didn’t catch it. If you enjoy him, he does give the links to all of his channels now and then as well.

Enjoy the Grand Canyon

Perfect timing

It’s amazing how it happens. Perfect timing.

Yesterday’s post shared the idea of counselling in a book. Check it out here if you missed it… Love is a Choice

This morning, waiting in my inbox, was the regular email notification for the weekly podcast I follow faithfully. The content is always interesting and helpful, on a variety of topics. Today’s topic was especially meaningful on the heels of yesterday’s book. The timing couldn’t have been more perfect, the two books fit so well together.

The subject line of the email was an attention grabber.

A specific type of writing that will combat anxiety, depression, and symptoms from past trauma.

There was no way I could walk away from this podcast and leave it for another day. It had to be today. I watched it twice, it was packed that full. .

Today’s interviewee has written a book called The Power of Writing it Down.

Part of author/writing coach Allison Fallon’s target audience is the same crowd flocking to read Love is a Choice... Count me in.

The Power of Writing It Down: A Simple Habit to Unlock Your Brain and Reimagine Your Life

Partial Amazon synopsis:

For anyone who’s trying to make sense of their life, who wants to get unstuck from the patterns that hold them back, hear this incredible news: everything you need for the freedom you want is entirely within reach. This practice and pathway is free, it’s readily available every day of your life, it takes just minutes of your time, and anyone can do it. 

Author, writing coach, and speaker Allison Fallon’s life transformed when she discovered the power of a daily writing practice. As it turns out, using your words is one of the most powerful means you have for unlocking your life. The Power of Writing It Down is your guide to this transformative tool available to us all. In as little as five to twenty minutes a day, scientific research shows this daily practice can help you: 

  • Identify your ruts and create new neurological grooves toward better habits
  • Find fresh motivation and take ownership of your life
  • Heal from past pain and trauma
  • Relieve anxiety and depression
  • Contextualize life’s setbacks and minor frustrations
  • Live a more confident, balanced, and healthy life
  • …and so much more

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In the podcast interview she explains Expressive Writing well and mentioned that the writing talked about in her book is not regular writing and it’s not journaling. It makes a lot of sense.

The idea is to write down your deepest thought and feelings. I have experienced what she means when she says this type of writing accesses the subconscious part of the brain where the conscious is often not allowed.

This is basically what I do when I write my this and that posts. What comes out is often a surprise. With some of the posts, like I mentioned at the time of writing them, I was in the midst of angst and felt so much better when I was talked out. To really get into it, though, I expect most of it would not be something we’d want to share publicly.

I recommend listening to the interview before reading the book. I’m glad I did because hearing and seeing her will make the words on the page that much more real.

Practicing this form of writing will be helpful to everyone, not just the most broken among us.

Here is the link. Enjoy, and buy the book if it makes sense to you. I think you will be glad you did.

I haven’t been as intentional with this type of writing as is encouraged in her book. From ignorance, really. I want to try it her way, to see what the difference will be in my life.

I’m hoping you will discover this along with me.

Happy listening, reading, and writing.

This and that – June 15, 2021

This will be short but at least it’s something and that’s what I’m aiming for after all.

I’m currently reading and very much enjoying a collection with authors mostly unknown to me.

Adventure Brides

I’ll skip the synopsis this time and just say that adventure has been a good description of the stories so far. I’ve finished the first two and I’m about to start the third. It’s too early to tell but it’s off to a good start.

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Podcasts. It turns out I collect them like I collect books. My subscribed list is longer today than it was yesterday.

Jordan B Peterson. I’ve listened to and enjoyed interviews with him on other podcasts but yesterday, I discovered lovely long interviews on his podcast. Last night I binged. One interview was an hour and a half long, the second was over two hours.

I like him because he is thoughtful and deep. He doesn’t hold a lot of preconceived ideas and he is not looking for confirmation of his point of view. He comes from an academic background and his mind works in a way that mine does not. Still, while I don’t always understand the point he’s making and how he got there, I’m soaking up the experience. His open mind, thoughtful consideration, and courtesy toward ideas he disagrees with is refreshing and it challenges my mind to move beyond it’s current boundaries. There is a much larger world out there to be explored.

The other thing I like about him is his choice of guests. They are also thinkers who can match him in thoughtful dialogue. It’s a discussion not a debate. It’s a sharing of ideas and I love it.

To find him search Jordan B Peterson on YouTube or even do an internet search for his website. He can be found on many platforms.

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I am enjoying this space, reflecting on last night’s experience.

I’ll reserve changing the subject for another post.

Have a great day.

So much wisdom, so much empathy

This is a deeply touching interview filled with wisdom, understanding and empathy. And hope. So much hope. I have to share.

I hope you find it as comforting as I did. In these difficult days we need to hear voices filled with wisdom and hope.

Rick Warren has experienced unbelievable pain. Toward the end of the video he shares what it was like to live through it. He puts heavy emphasis on living through it.

This interview is posted by a gifted podcaster Carey Nieuwhof. He knows how to ask questions that will mine the depths and bring out the best in his guests. Always a blessing to the listener.

May you feel as blessed as I do right now.