Archives For counselling

healthHealth is something we all desire, and maybe something we do not spend enough time thinking about until we have suffered ill health.  I feel everyone should be informed and encouraged to look after their health from a young age.  There is a lot being done across the world but many people continue to ignore their health and pretend they do not know what to do.

I despair at the exporting of unhealthy foods from the developed world to the developing.  I am sad when I visit the Caribbean and see people replacing healthy local produce for mass-produced low-grade food imports.  This is particularly true of sweets where the homemade coconut fudge or nutmeg jam is thrown aside for a coloured chemical combination that contains no identifiable foods.

Like our health, we do not always value what we have until it disappears.  Because of the global economic climate many of us have rediscovered the joys of locally produced and home-cooked meals.  This is not only cheaper but often healthier as well.

Health is not only about the state of our bodies but also about our mental health, which covers our mind and emotions.  Our emotions show us how we are responding to things in our life. With good mental health we can make space for the range of our emotions, from despair to joy. No emotion is bad, it’s how we express it, or not, that is meaningful.

Be aware of what you pay attention to and what you ignore.  Some of us can be quite obsessive about one aspect of our health, such as our diet, whilst another area is completely ignored.  Take time to review how you take care of the health of your whole self.  It does not matter where you start but the message is to get started.  This is not about self-absorption but supports you to live a full and vibrant life. It is also generous as it  means you are more likely to be around for the loved ones in your life.

How are you looking after your physical, mental and emotional health?

So what is your attitude towards art and to your life as a whole?  It is the simple things that can sometimes make a big difference in how we approach life. I really think if we shared our insights and learning more it could have a wonderfully contagious and healing effect.  It is a much better gift to share than negativity, irritation, superficiality, self-importance and other non-uplifting attitudes.

Our attitude is a key aspect of what we put into life.  That attitude also affects what we get out of it.  It impacts on our relationships with others, how they experience us and how we perceive them.  Are we open and positive or closed off and negative?  If you believe that like attracts like then positivity from us brings that out in others.  Similarly, negativity attaches to negativity.  Individually we are part of this multiplying effect that spreads through society.  Some people pay attention to an approach called the law of attraction which suggests that you can attract into your life that which you seek by being focused on it.  It suggests that we have an impact on our world – it matters how we are.

Attitude

‘If you don’t like something, change it.  If you can’t change it, change your attitude.’ – Maya Angelou.

Are you aware of the attitudes you carry around with you?  How would the people in your life describe your attitudes?  Is this what you feel is true for you or does it feel like circumstances cause you to respond in certain ways?

Has your attitude made life difficult for you?  How would it be to talk to the people in your life who you trust and get them to give you some feedback on this?

Is there anything else you’d like to consider as a result of reading this?

An A-Z for your life – Art

December 30, 2012

artHave you ever wondered about what you know and what you do not know in life?  Sometimes I stumble upon insights and it surprises me that I did not know that thing before.  Art is all around us even though we do not always see it.  Classically it is about paintings and drawings that have been done by great artists.  It can also be about sculpture and other images.  For some it is about a literal interpretation of a real thing or event whilst for others it can be about creating a mood or a feeling.  Some people get very excited about what counts as art and what does not.

For me it is an opportunity to appreciate the image and the emotions it connects to.  I love a good painting or sculpture although I can’t really do either myself.  I do however enjoy taking photographs and have been very pleased to include my photos in this book.  Images can stir us on a very deep level and help us to appreciate the complexity of our existence.  I love to pop in to art galleries and museums in my lunch hour as it sometimes puts the day’s work into perspective and reminds me there is more to life than whatever I am working on.

What we call art seems to be changing and expanding all the time.  I went to see a very modern exhibition recently and found it very engaging.  I decided to enter into the fun of it and not stand aside critiquing it.  There were mounds of concrete and weird mirrors that contorted reality.  Other recent events have seen someone running in a gallery and people performing on a plinth as forms of living art.

As modern western life becomes more designed I think art is moving off the walls and into our homes and lives.  Art influences the designs of chairs, kitchens, cars and trainers.  It could be the way a dish is served in a restaurant or the beautiful movement of a world-class dancer.  We all consume art in our daily lives.  Art meets fashion on the high street.  I often see gorgeous shoes that are beautiful to look at but impossible to wear.  Art meets nature in sunrise and sunset.

Thankfully we do not need to create our own art to appreciate it.  How does the idea of art sound to you?  Is this something you have an appreciation for or does it seem unnecessary and foolish?  What do you consider art?  Are you able to appreciate any art in your life?

 

I stood with one hand under my chin, arms folded and looking at my feet.  If you saw

me at a distance you’d think I was feeling miserable.  The truth is I was enjoying the

sunshine and engrossed with the ladybird trying to climb up my shoes.  A grounded

moment in a busy day.

 

What we are thinking and feeling is not always obvious to those around us.  If our aim

is to deceive then that’s great but if we wish to deepen relationships and develop trust

then opening up is necessary.   We could be smiling or crying on the inside, who

knows?

 

What we see from the outside is

always a partial picture of the

truth, and even we may not fully

understand ourselves.

 

 

 

For myself I find it is very powerful to be really seen, even if feedback is sometimes

difficult to receive.  It is very exposing and moving to have someone give honest

feedback on how they experience us.   With my clients I offer my reflections gently.

 

If we are experienced differently from what we believe to be the truth then it is up to us

to explore this. How are we living or being that gives them that impression?  Is there a

conspiracy or is there some truth in how others experience you?

I would love to have your responses.