Sunday, October 31, 2010

When to Say When

There are times in your life you have to compromise.  The important thing to note is when you really have to make that compromise or when you're begin stubborn.  When it comes to things I have always done, giving those activities up can be humbling and necessary - especially when it's not just my health in consideration.

Such a challenge is being given to me when I'm in my last trimester of pregnancy, anemic, put on rest, and my husband who has been my champion and care-giver gets ill himself -  and needs to be taken care of.  Sigh.  Isn't that always the way? 

So what do you do when you're faced with needing help from others when you shouldn't do something yourself?  I have to tell you, NOT doing what I want to do and have been able to do in the past is very challenging.  Learning how to ask for help is the best thing I can do - and so I'm doing it.  I have great friends who live nearby who have offered to help out.  One little word was needed from me, "yes" (I added a "please.") 

Having people who I can count on touches me to the depths of my soul.  Who can you count on in your life?  Be thankful for them and don't be afraid to ask for help when you need it.  Feeling needed is a great feeling!  Invite help and you might be surprised who is there for you.

Copyright 2010 Heather Corwin

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

When to Take a Break From Working

How do you know if you're burnt out?  How do you know if you've had it with your job?  How do you know if you just need a vacation OR if you need to investigate another career?

Some great questions to ask yourself include:
  1. Do I love telling people about what I do?  
  2. Am I excited to go to work every day?
  3. Do I feel a sense of accomplishment in my job?
  4. Does the idea of not doing my job anymore give me great relief?
 If you answered "no" to 2 of these four questions, you might consider the idea that you are not enjoying your chosen profession and it might be time for a change.  In this job market, changing jobs is not ideal, but you have to be happy.  Most people make sure they have another job lined up prior to leaving the job they're in to avoid any unnecessary anxiety created in the job transition.

A qualifying question you might ponder that often helps this decision is: do you feel you're defined by your job?  If so, you might be rolling up too much personal identity in your work.  That can be dangerous.  Why?  Because self-esteem that hinges upon performance rather than a variety of sources will make you completly reliable on always working - and you will be devestated if ever you are let go from your workplace.  Finding joy in other activities and connecting with people will be the best way to move toward a more balanced and happy life.

Copyright 2010 Heather Corwin

Monday, October 25, 2010

Comfort Food Comforts

When you're stressed out, do you reach for the mac and cheese?  You may have been able to kick some bad eating habits for the most part, but sometimes there are events in your life that simply call for good, old fashioned comfort food.  The loss of a loved one is certainly one of those times.

Friends, family, and people who loved the same person you did will gather to celebrate the life of the person you all lost.  The people closest to the person who past may not be able to function well, including simple daily necessities such as eating.  A tradition that I've come to cherish in these times of grief is bringing the bereaved some food that's tasty, easy to keep, and comforting.

In the end, foods that comfort also tend to be warm, carb filled, and reminds you of childhood.  These foods include lasagna (it's easier to make than you think!), macaroni and cheese, salads, tuna casserole, and almost any Midwestern church food you can think of!  When your heart is hurting - comfort food might be just the thing to ease some pain - with a dash of love!!!

Copyright 2010 Heather Corwin

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Simple Rituals Help Heal Your Life

What are some of the things you do every day?  Coffee?  Shower?  Wash your face?  Take a walk?  Walk your dog?  Look yourself in the mirror and say, "It's a beautiful day.  What are we going to do with it?"

Structure in any form, and as little as a simple daily ritual, can help you reset and rejuvenate for your day.  The act of doing a familiar activity can calm the mind because you already know how to perform the task.  Enjoying the motions of the task are the key.

Whether you're starting your day eating a banana, drinking coffee, or taking a walk, enjoy your daily routine.  Sometimes that's the time when we can most easily discover how we're feeling in the moment - which will help us better prepare for the day.

Have a great day!!!

Copyright 2010 Heather Corwin

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Shame. Can it sneak up on you?

It sure can!  Sometimes a small comment from a stranger can surprise me.  Sometimes those comments are kind, and sometimes they are embarrassing, sometimes they are carelessly mean and cutting remarks.  So how can you avoid the hurts when they happen?

Well, truth be told, you can't.  What you can do is know yourself, know when a button in you is being pushed, and commiserate with a good friend to take the sting out of the hurtful comments made. 

What did my husband do when he found out I was hurt?  He came to my side immediately.  Does your friend have to be your significant other?  NO.  Just someone who doesn't allow you to take yourself too seriously.

And do I now feel better?  Youbetcha.  Playing cards was a great move on his part too!

Copyright 2010 Heather Corwin

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Window of Tolerance

Window Of Tolerance
Learning how to re-establish personal limits

We all walk around with our own tolenerance levels of how we take in the world and how we decide to interact in the world.  Pat Ogden has come up with the name "Window of Tolerance" because this window, like those in our homes, can open further than we exercise. 

How can we grow tolerance?  First, we have to recognize the way we interact in the world and how we prefer to live.  Some people like to remain quiet and not engage with people, some will engage with people and avoid confrontation at all cost, some will engage and effectively communicate with people, and yet others react defensively and often with anger.  These are only a few categories, but figuring out your primary modus operandi in the world will allow you to investigate how to increase your tolerance and ability to handle situations you might otherwise shy away from presently.

Some tools to explore to increase your tolerance include meditation, therapy (talk, Rolfing, massage, skin care), motion (to release any pent up energies) which could inlcude
  • yoga
  • dancing
  • working out
  • walking
  • stretching
  • yard work or house work.
According to Ogden, humor is a lovely way to diffuse your visceral reaction to any deep aversions you may have.  Not necessarily in the moment, but when you're reflecting on your experience later, you may find poking a little fun at yourself a great way to take some of the sting out of the situation.  When you're able to see the lighter side of your humanity, you are better able to diffuse the intensity of emotion.  This way when you are up against your challenging moment, you can better
adapt and create the moment as you WOULD have it rather than
the moment controlling you.

To read more about healing trauma or discovering new ways of being two great books I suggest are:
Healing power book cover
Trauma book cover
May your tolerance be high and you compassion for yourself be large!!!

Copyright 2010 Heather Corwin


Click on the link below and read about the Window of Tolerance we all have as well as why organic food is a good healthy choice!!!