COVID 19 has changed a lot of lives in many ways over the past year. It has also cancelled, delayed and changed many travel adventures and trips that I had planned, one being a hiking trip in the Grand Canyon.
With little to do, other than to explore the great outdoors locally, I find myself getting bored with the same routine and the same scenery. I dream about safe travel again and exploring new places.
In my community, Point Rocks has made painting and hiding rocks a community adventure that is fun for kids, families and adults. Now going out can be a fun scavenger hunt searching for treasures that are hidden at the university, nature reserve, and on city streets. Rocks are painted with inspirational messages, humor, and beautiful designs. You never know what you are going to find. Half the fun is finding the rocks and then re-hiding them so others can play too.
Wherever you are, you can either join in the fun or start your own rocking community. People post the rocks on their local Facebook page to show which rocks they find and then send them out into the community again. Great fun for all!
Yoga isn’t for everyone but for those who have tried it, find it a wonderful way to relax and quiet the mind and body. It is a gentle form of exercise that strengthens, tones and renews the body, mind and spirit.
Tadasana, or mountain pose is something that most people can do. It may seem deceptive because this is pose is so simple, yet it has a lot of health benefits and also makes you feel grounded, balanced and strong. Some of the benefits include:
Improved Body Posture: Our body is affected by the way we sit or stand. Misalignment can affect our mind and ability to think clearly.
Helps with Depression: People with rounded back and drooping shoulders are more prone to depression. Their energy flow is misaligned and leaves them feeling sluggish and low.
Tadasana is a simple and easy yoga practice to begin. I would start with 5 minutes a day. Find a place that makes you feel good such as facing a window or being outside.
Stand straight, arms alongside your body
Spread your toes
Balance the crown of your head directly over the center of your pelvis
Soften your eyes and focus on being strong like a mountain
Focus on slow gentle breaths as you tune into your body and reflect on mountain strength
This short intro to yoga can be a mini session into creating a healthier more balanced you! Give it try for at least a week and see if it changes your posture or the way you feel.
During difficult times, and unexpected transitions, job losses, social distancing and isolation, now is a good time to make some positive changes.
Sometimes life takes us in a different direction than we intended to go and we need help or guidance to make it through the transition.
As a Licensed Professional Counselor, Substance Abuse Counselor and Life Coach, I have helped many through difficult transitions including career loss or change, relationship conflict, health and wellness, spiritual guidance and past trauma. Through my own experience and background, I am able to help people from a place of understanding and empathy and I also recognize that the path to healing can at times be painful or difficult, but my work as a guide is to help support you on your personal journey.
I currently have a few openings for consultations and would be very happy to answer any questions about coaching sessions that you have.
I grew up on sugar. The best part of our family meals were desserts. Everyone looked forward to cakes, cookies, and pies. Then as children we would go to the dentist and get our cavities filled and be rewarded with candy. Life has changed since then. It now has become known that sugar is toxic and highly addictive.
Research indicates that sugar is linked to diabetes, heart disease and even Alzheimer. What appears to be safe and a treat, is actually dangerous to our health if consumed in large quantities.
Office parties, kids birthday’s and holidays are often filled with sugar. Our lives seems to revolve around the tempting sweet stuff. Like caffeine our bodies crave the fix, but the fix is temporary and often times makes us feel worse. In my private practice as a counselor, I have heard personal stories of sugar causing depression, low energy and poor sleep which results in a higher sugar intake to feel energized. Then the cycle is repeated and can last years or even a lifetime.
Low sugar intake is recommended for any diet and there are lots of natural sugars to use as a replacement including honey, molasses, coconut sugar, maple syrup and stevia.
The next time you reach for a candy bar or piece of cake, pay attention to how you feel physically, emotionally and mentally both before and after you it it. If your body is intolerant of sugar you will notice low energy, depression and brain fog among other symptoms. If you are struggling with any of these symptoms take steps to reduce or eliminate sugar from your daily intake. This may be difficult at first, but your body and mind will thank you. Also ask yourself why you are eating sugar.
Being a cinnamon lover and valuing the nutritional and medicinal properties of the spice, I was delighted recently when I found Horchata in my local grocery store. I had never had the drink before but love rice milk, cinnamon and vanilla, so knew I had to try it.
The drink tastes great on its own but I added in herbal coffee for a twist. You can make your own Horchata from scratch, but I cheated and used the box mix (below):
Add 8-16 ounces of Rice Dream Brand Horchata
I cup crushed or chopped ice
Lightly mix or blend in a blender
Pour 1-3 shots of coffee or Herbal coffee over the top
The pandemic has stopped all of my travel plans, so I have been forced to armchair travel. It may sound boring, but it gives me a taste of which countries I want to travel to in the future.
So far I have visited the Congo, Afghanistan, Zanskar, Tajikistan, India, Iran, Benin and Bhutan. Through YouTube documentaries I have cooked in remote villages in India with colorful spices and have driven through dangerous steep mountain roads in the the Hindu Kush.
Armchair travel has been fun, and I’m learning a lot about new places as I add them to my bucket list of places to travel.
The pandemic has lasted much longer than expected, and appears to not be going away, so for me, its about how can I continue to do the things that I love in a safe way that inspire and motivates me to get through the hard times.
Wherever you are, even if it is sitting on your own couch, you can still travel if your passion is to experience other cultures, other countries, or worlds other than your own. Travel is a way of enriching your life, your knowledge, and your understanding of what life is like elsewhere.
Below is a link to one of my books about my own travel experiences. Travel has always renewed my spirit and provided me with a sense of adventure. In Nomadic Tales of a Traveling Counselor, I explore my own fears through solo and group experience to some of the most beautiful remote places on earth.
Feckle Head and his cat Lucky Feister have anger problems and together they find annoying each other fun until one day Feckle Head discovers that it feels better to be happy. A humorous story about an angry man and his feisty cat who make the decision to be happy.