What comes to your mind, or what do you think of when I say the word WATER?
When I was just a young girl of about 9-years old, my family moved overseas. Every weekend, all six of us would pile into the red and white VW Camper and travel to some new and exciting location in Italy. My dad usually took the scenic route along the coastline of the Mediterranean Sea. I can still recall the thrill and utter amazement of coming around a corner only to see the magnificent majesty of the deep blue sea, Breathtaking!
Water relaxes the mind, heals the body, soothes the heart, and calms the spirit! Water has always been an incredible source of healing for me; how about you?
Have you ever heard of Blue Mind Science? Is it the study of the aquatic environment’s health benefits? It offers up a cure for whatever ails you, whether it’s stress, anxiety, or just a case of the blues.
Humans are naturally drawn to water. That’s why most communities are built near bodies of water. Scientists are now quantifying the positive physical and cognitive effects of water. It turns out it leads to an improved overall sense of wellbeing and can produce a meditative state that makes us happier, healthier, calmer, creative, and more capable of AWE! And all for free!
Whether it’s going down to the ocean, visiting the local swimming pool, sitting in a jacuzzi, the smell of rain, a good thunderstorm, or spa service, water heals. Did you know the word SPA is an abbreviation for Solus Par Aqua, which means health or healing through water? Have you ever experienced a Vichy shower?
Now I would be remiss as an OT Practitioner and a Wholistic Empowerment Coach if I didn’t mention HYDRATION and its importance. Did you know that humans are approximately 70% water? Have you experienced any of the following?
• Dry skin
• Dry mouth
• Brain fog
• Muscle cramps
• Rapid heart rate
These are all symptoms of dehydration:
Whether you choose to drink tap, spring, mineral, seltzer, purified, alkaline, vitamin, or well-water, so long as it is safe, the main goal is to stay hydrated and drink enough water each day to stay healthy and happy. Also, what is it they say about the fountain of youth? Why not stop for a spot of tea or pause this season for some delicious watermelon.
Some benefits of water are:
• Better heart health and overall health
• Increased energy and brain function
• Lubricated joints and more robust muscles
• Ease with digestion
• Maximized physical performance
And the list goes on. Water is therapeutic!
To you, it might just be water, but to me, it’s how I regain my sanity.
I want to end today’s blog with a quote by Sir George Sitwell.
“I have left almost to the last the magic of water, an element which owing to its changefulness of form and mood and color and to the vast range of its effects is ever the principal source of landscape beauty, and has like music a mysterious influence over the mind.”
— Sir George Sitwell, On the Making of Gardens
May you experience a wholehearted, wholistic sense of wellbeing, along with the Blue Mind happier, healthier, calmer, more creative, and capable of Awe, MAGIC OF WATER OFTEN!
When you hear the word “friend”, what comes to mind for you?
What qualities does a good friend embody? Before you read any more, take a minute to pause and really think about what it means to be a good friend.
For me, the qualities I look for in a friend include (but are not limited to) the following…
- I can trust them
- they are honest with me and allow me to be honest with them
- they know how to listen well
- they have a good sense of humor
- they challenge me to be better
- they are there to lean on and are supportive in challenging times
- they give me the benefit of the doubt
- they are encouraging and want the best for me
Now, I want you to think about what kind of friend you are to yourself…
For most of us, we tend to be better friends to others than we are to ourselves. We expect things of ourselves that we would never expect of others, we make promises to ourselves and then don’t keep them (New Year resolutions are the perfect example of this), and we speak to ourselves in ways we would never speak to a friend.
I recently participated in an online workshop on self-compassion and the thing that stood out to me the most was how common it is for us to beat ourselves up with negative self-talk. For most of us, the voice in our head, at times, speaks to us in ways that we would never stand for if it were someone outside ourselves speaking to us that way. We can be really hard on ourselves.
As a recovering perfectionist and someone who is prone to anxiety, I am always on the lookout for ways to manage stress, so when I learned that the research shows that practicing self-compassion not only motivates people to overcome failure and to do better, but also helps reduce stress and anxiety, I knew that becoming a better friend to myself was something I needed to lean into. I’ve been practicing self-compassion for about 4 years now and here is what I am learning…
The first step is to set a self-compassion intention. My intention was to practice talking to myself like I would talk to someone I genuinely loved, admired, and believed was doing the best they could do in any given moment.
The second step is awareness. Pay attention to your self-talk, especially when you feel you’ve messed up in some way. Are you a critic or a cheerleader? Work on being mindful of the language that you default to during the stressful times in your life.
The third step is to practice compassion. Think of someone outside yourself that you love dearly…practice talking to yourself the way you would talk to them.
I am passionate about the topic of compassion because I think our modern lives would be exponentially better if we all practiced being more compassionate both to ourselves and others. Life is hard at times! believe in being the change I want to see in the world. I would love to see more compassion, so it is my goal to be more compassionate. We are all human, and part of the human experience is the fact that we are all imperfect. Let’s practice being kind to ourselves and kind to others. Just imagine the impact a more compassionate world would have… it’s mind blowing!!!
Who wants to join me?
If you know me, then you know that my life coaching workshops are all about teaching what I am practicing, so I have two events I’d like to invite you to…
The first one is Wholistic Woman’s full day retreat on March 3rd, outside Baltimore, Maryland, titled ’Be Creative’, where I will be leading a breakout session in which we will be making a self-compassion vision page. You can find details and registration information here…https://home/wholisu6/dev.wholisticwomanretreats.com.wholisticwomanretreats.com/events/be-creative-retreat/
Join us for the day or for the weekend. Either way I know you will walk away feeling rejuvenated, refreshed, and inspired.
The 2nd event, ‘’Be Compassionate’, is on April 25th in Frederick, Maryland. During this interactive workshop, you will have the opportunity to experience a guided meditation on self-compassion, participate in a coach-led discussion on compassion, and you will walk away with strategies to put compassion to work in your life. For details on this event visit https://home/wholisu6/dev.wholisticwomanretreats.com.wholisticwomanretreats.com/events/compassionate-evening-retreat/
I hope to see you at one of these events!
Today’s author: Laura Hall, CPC, CDWF: As a certified professional coach since 2009, Laura Hall, Certified Daring Way™ Facilitator has been helping people just like you make changes in. As a mother of 2 girls, Laura has a special interest in coaching parents, so if you still have children living at home, ask Laura about her Wholehearted Parenting programs. Laura can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or feel free to visit her website HallCoaching.com
In August, my Be Positive evening retreat, based on Gratitude and Positivity, focused on how 40% of our happiness comes from intentional activity and the group ideas generated from the retreat exercise made us feel 100%. I explained how author Sonja Lyubomirsky’s research shows 10% of our happiness comes from life circumstances, 50% is from genetics, and 40% from intentional activities. This breakdown is turned into the Happy Pie – the representation of what we can do for ourselves to be happy!
Over 30 women put energy into what they can intentionally do to create their happy pie! After giving each group an opportunity to describe ingredients to create a whole pie, they came up with Fulfilled Pie, Soul Pie, Whoopi Pie, Peppy Pie, and Positivity Peachy Pie! They were ready to embrace what they had control of, such as:
- Being in Nature
- Making their Bed
- Self -Compassion and Gratitude
- Pet Love
- Connection, Dance, and Laughter
What are your intentional activities to feel whole and happy?
The practice of gratitude, or being in the present moment here and now, is many things to many people. During Be Positive, we discussed how expanding our horizons to express gratitude gave us more energy and positive emotions, and as a bonus, it has many health benefits as well. The happiness tool I often use to measure positive change is If I were 3% more grateful in my day, I would ______________.
I was over three percent more grateful to partner with Cathy Hansen, a certified Laughing Yoga instructor, to help us put some of these intentional activities into practice. We focused on many ideas, but here are five we explored:
- Journaling – A healthy way to reflect on the day in a written way. Take time to reconnect with yourself and your thoughts on paper.
- Smile – Everyone knows that when you’re happy, you smile, but it’s also true that when you smile, you are happy.
- Compliments – Brightening someone else’s day also brightens your own. Sincerity is a key component as well.
- Volunteer – Helping others, like victims of Hurricane Harvey or more recent Hurricane Irma, is a great way to boost how you feel about yourself.
- Meditation – Take 2 minutes to be calm and silent. Clear your mind and be present.
What are habits you create to find the positive side of your situations?
Whatever your habits are, if being more positive is on your mind – move forward with some of these or try something else without overthinking. Shake it off. It’s time to cut loose and have some fun. We think so much all day, every day, so start to set aside some thoughts for you. Don’t sweat the small stuff and enjoy your fresh Happy Pie!
Today’s author: Kelye Rouse-Brown, CHA, CHT is a business owner, joint venture partner, HR expert, certified coach, and training professional. Her 3 components: Educate, Motivate, and Cultivate help her clients develop, spark action, and grow a successful career/business and life from the core. Kelye can be reached at 301-371-9300 or by visiting her website: krbtrainingsolutions.com