New Beginnings

A little piece of us dies every day. From our very cells to pieces of our heart forever changed by the pains and challenges of yesterday.

The other side of that truth is everything is reborn again. Everything. It is in our details. Our perceptions. Our truths. Every day a part of us is brand new.

Each moment brings a new beginning. It was my mother Enid’s final chapter and my son Nixon first, that I found this truth. As the anxiety ridden yesterday is gone, this morning I awoke with very specific words resounding in my soul.

Do not stand at my grave and weep.

Enid and David

Enid and her brother David.

Enid had purposefully chosen this poem by Mary Elizabeth Frye and carefully hidden in a place where she knew only the person who needed the message most and the person who could carry and deliver her message would find it.

I found it. I was momentarily stunned, as I knew exactly what I was reading and why. There were no directions with the poem. I simply knew. Through hot and salty tears, a feeling of being cool and refreshed began to ease the pain in my heart just a bit. 

I am a thousand winds that blow.

The epitome of class and timeless beauty.  Enid on her wedding day

The epitome of class and timeless beauty. Enid on her wedding day

These words are boundless and at first glance seem much too large to bring comfort. As I sat outside soaking up the Vancouver sunlight and gazing at my mother’s tiny garden after she had passed, the words played over and over in my soul. I began to whisper them quietly, over and over, to my beautiful new baby boy who was eyeing me carefully as if he was sent to care for me rather than me for him.

I got it. I GOT IT! Each moment brings a new beginning. Love, energy, and intention never die. WE are one and we are all an active part of all things. Whether our outside physical carriage is gone, our chassis … our internal framework is entirely intact and perfectly aligned with infinite energy.

Do not stand at my grave and cry.  I am not there.  I did not die.

Lennox, Enid, Nixon, & Alex

Lennox, Enid, Nixon, and me. 12 days later she would be gone. Look at her smile. Magnificent!

You are alive! Carpe Diem! Rise today and smile a smile you have never smiled. Help one more person. Let one tiny argument go. Let angst have a go at itself today while you lean into the wind. While I miss my mom every day and my journey sometimes brings me to my knees, I have learned to say  “thank you” while I’m down there because as soon a I get up, I know my gait will be refreshed, renewed, and reborn.

Today, I am thankful for the wind. It spreads seeds so they can grow new food, flowers, plants, and life. The wind cools you on the hottest of days and if you listen carefully, you may your hear angels joyfully singing of all you believe you have lost. The song can fill your heart and restore your faith.  Today, I am thankful for each person who reaches out to me with a quest for hope. You restore me every day. You, many times, ARE my wind.  You are my angels.

I will set out for today’s adventure with Nixon with the wind in my heart and the sun on my face. I bet something spectacular is waiting for us to discover. Gotta go! Gotta get there! I know the same gift is waiting for you. Open you heart and close your mouth! All you are wishing for is already here.

Here is Mary Elizabeth Frye’s poem, Enid’s gift to me, and my family. Our gift to you.

"Do Not Stand At My Grave And Weep" ~ Mary Elizabeth Frye

“Do Not Stand At My Grave And Weep” ~ Mary Elizabeth Frye

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“I’ll do it tomorrow…” 4 Tips for How to Avoid Procrastination and Get Things Done!

procrastinators leaders of tomorrow

“I’ll do it tomorrow…”

4 Tips for How to Avoid Procrastination and Get Things Done!

By

Natasha Sharma M.Sc OACCPP

NKS Therapy

Natasha Sharma is a psychotherapist, doctoral student, author, speaker, and media spokesperson.

Natasha Sharma is a psychotherapist, doctoral student, author, speaker, and media spokesperson.

@NatashaSharma17

A stunningly high number of clients I see in my practice complain about the dreaded P-word: Procrastination. They have ideas, goals, small tasks and large ones, and never seem to complete any of them. When I ask them what gets in the way, the answer is often “I don’t know.” Procrastination – aka the ‘art’ of putting things off until another day – is incredibly common. Not that big of a deal for things that actually can wait, but perfectly annoying when there are things we genuinely need to get done sooner rather than later. It’s a problem that plagues the busy and the not-so-busy, over-achievers and under-achievers, the younger and the older. Why is this?

Human beings are creatures of habit, and our brains have a tendency to favour routine. So any tasks that drastically deviate from our daily routines require more effort from our brains, in the form of conscious self-motivation, organization, and initiation to those very tasks. And, in case you didn’t already know it, our brains don’t like to work! But constant procrastination often leaves us feeling disorganized, unproductive, and downright down on ourselves. And in the worst cases it can lead things to pile up forcing us to do everything at the last minute, which can be overwhelming and incredibly stressful.

Gail Devers Quote

Gail Devers

World Class Olympic Athlete, Woman, Philahthopist, #MOM

@imgaildevers

Here are 4 tips for how to avoid procrastination once and for all:

for how to avoid procrastination once and for all:

  1. Get a good night’s rest – every night! Procrastination is linked to the self-regulatory mechanisms of our bodies, also called executive functioning, which is chaired by the pre-frontal cortex area of our brains. Without adequate rest, this area of the brain simply cannot function at its optimal level, so organizing your time will be more difficult. Granted I said our brains are lazy, but don’t deprive them of a full 8 hours every single night. And if you can handle it, one good, strong cup of coffee in the morning will kick-start your pre-frontal cortex and get you ready for action.
  1. Don’t try to do it all; pick a few things! Picture this: You have a paper to write for a class you’re taking, your taxes are due, you’ve always wanted to learn how to build furniture, learn to speak Swahili, write a book…slow down! If your brain is overwhelmed with too many tasks, it won’t try for any of them! Instead, pick one or two things you really want or need to do and shoot for those to start. Once they are done, pick one or two more, and so on. Research has consistently shown that this method of ‘chunking’ things out helps to get things done faster.
  1. Write things down. This is an oldie but a goodie. Research has also shown that writing things down is more strongly correlated with completion of said things as compared to when we don’t write things down. Why? Accountability. Also, there’s a certain satisfaction in the physical act of deleting an item off of your “to do” list – it can be so gratifying!
  1. Use pleasure as a reward. Still got your pen out? Make a list of things you like in life; things that bring you sheer joy and pleasure. They can be things you do every day or things you occasionally splurge on. Be it an hour at the gym, taking a long hot bath, having a glass of wine, watching a ‘guilty-pleasure’ movie, whatever. Look at your list and use the things on it as rewards for getting something done. Promise yourself that: “After I write half of that report for work, I will watch an hour of TV” and “after I write the rest of the report tomorrow, I will play tennis with Bob.” And then make sure you do reward yourself with something after you finish. This is effectively training your own brain to anticipate rewards for not procrastinating, thereby doing it less and less frequently. Because in addition to being kind of lazy, our brains love to be rewarded!

Put these 4 tips into action and you’ll likely notice a big change in how often you put things off for another day. And in how you feel about yourself. Now if you’ll excuse me, my reward for writing this article is an episode of “Suits.” I’m totally addicted.

Motivational-Quotes-9

 

 

How To Be Happy And Get The Most Out Of Life!

 How to Be Happy and Get the Most out of Life !

By: Natasha Sharma, M.Sc.

@NatashaSharma17

Natasha Sharma is a psychotherapist, doctoral student, author, speaker, and media spokesperson.

Natasha Sharma is a psychotherapist, doctoral student, author, speaker, and media spokesperson. Follow on Twitter @NatashaSharma17

Problems, as we all know, are a reality of living. Life can be unpredictable and will most certainly be stressful at one point or another. But it is how we respond to changes and solve a problem that have the most impact and influence to the quality of our lives, as opposed to the actual problem itself. In my practice as a Psychotherapist, I have worked with many individuals and families of all ages, ranging from issues as harrowing as psychological trauma in small children to more commonplace issues such as conflict in the workplace, or dating and relationship issues. Over the years, I have come to realize that a problem is a problem, relative to the unique context of a person’s life and individual phenomenology. Which is to say that they exist – or do not exist – based on our own personal circumstances and subjective experiences of life.

No matter what our individual circumstances are, there are things that all of us can do – whether we struggle with mental illness, extremely difficult living conditions, anxiety, depression, or just plain old boredom – to promote our psychological and emotional well-being, and therefore the quality of our lives. I call these the 4 pillars of LIFE: Love, Introspection, Fun, and Empowerment. Let’s take a closer look at each one working backwards:

Empowerment: Through constantly seeking knowledge and education about ourselves and the world around us, we Empower ourselves! That means we increase our capacity to make the best choices to suit our individual lives, and to transform those choices into the actions and outcomes that we desire. We feel stronger and more confident in our ability to control our own life and destiny.

Fun: Life is incomplete and boring without Fun! We express our individual selves every day through our tastes in food, fashion, travel, hobbies, social events, music, movies, and whatever else we are passionate about. Fun is the spice of life, and regular doses of it at every age are essential to our well-being!

Introspection: To increase self-awareness, we must look inward and recognize our unique strengths, our weaknesses, our areas of vulnerability, and our passions. We all have them. Become intimately acquainted with your unique self!

Love: Our well-being is truly enhanced by the love we receive and give to others. But most important, and foremost to good mental health, is the love we must have towards ourselves. This type of love comes through deep self-awareness, self-respect, and unconditional self-acceptance. When we are kind and forgiving of ourselves, we feel more secure and at peace. We gain more confidence, are more assertive, have more energy, are less resentful, and make good decisions that are of benefit to us. Simply put, the most important thing each of us can do to promote our own mental health is to fall in love with ourselves! When we do this, we are happy. And when we are happy, we are better mothers, fathers, daughters, sons, brothers, sisters, wives, husbands, and friends.

Many of the people I encounter in my world find themselves unable to let go of the past, or anxious about the future. We cannot change the past. But we can change the way we reflect on it and thereby re-write the story of our past. We cannot predict the future. But we can challenge our fears and assess the likelihood of events. Finally, we cannot always control life. But we can always control how we experience life.

No Mud, No Lotus

No Mud, No Lotus

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Moms Motivating Other Mothers

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