On our journey to eat healthy, our family has had to come up with some quick and easy dinners that are also nutritious, plant-based, and don’t need much in terms of cooking skill.😊 That way, any one of us can whip up dinner during the work week. Looking for some quick and easy dinners for your week? Take a look at the easy recipes below!
Many years ago my family and I started a “daily” gratitude practice at dinner time. We would talk about the 3 things that went well that day or that we really appreciated. I used this practice as a tool to deal with the negativity from the challenges that I had been facing at work. It ended up being a great practice that we have continued. But is gratitude practice really worth the effort?
Imagine scaling a 3200 foot rock in the middle of Yosemite National Park…. with no rope! I recently saw climber Alex Honnold do just that in the National Geographic documentary film Free Solo. The movie documents his journey to scale the El Capitan rock formation with no ropes and no assistance. I was captivated from the start. It was truly an exhilarating experience. As I watched Alex do the climb, I could palpate his flow state; that feeling you get when you are completely absorbed in what you are doing and time seems to stand still. I was in awe.
Our minds are so busy wondering with worry and anxiety about the future or anger and resentment about the past. In fact, research conducted by Matt Killingsworth in his Track Your Happiness project, (where he’s collected over 650,000 responses from people about how they are feeling, what they were doing and about their mind wandering; using cellphones), showed that our mind wanders about 47% of the time! His project also showed that when our minds wander, we tend to be less happy and that it was the mind-wandering itself that led to unhappy feelings. So then, it would make sense that practicing being present and focused on the task at hand would help increase our happiness. But how do we do that? Enter: Mindfulness.
Stress and tension from our day to day lives are thought to causes blockages in our energy system causing tension in the form of muscle tightness. Imagine holding a tight fist for a long time. It takes energy to do that, just as it takes energy to keep your muscles all knotted up. A Qigong practice helps to clear those lines of tension to allow the energy to flow more smoothly. Like many mind-body practices, Qigong helps transition our bodies from stress to relaxation. When our energy is not being used up in stress mode, we are left with more energy for the day.
Have you ever noticed that when you are driving a car, you tend to steer towards what you are focusing on? Hence, the importance of ‘look at where you want to go.’ Well, this happens in life too. Most of us tend to look at what we don’t want in life and especially at the beginning of the New Year:
I recently read about Will Bowen, a minister of a small church in the American Midwest, who, in 2006, challenged his congregation to 21 days of no complaining. The idea was that if you want more abundance and prosperity, then you couldn’t get there by complaining about what you already had. If you complained, you started back at day ONE! He took the challenge himself, and it took him 6 months to go 21 days straight without complaining! He states that the average person complains 15-20 times a day. His congregation also noted all kinds of benefits in their lives and their health.
Are you finding that despite meditating, yoga and trying to be physically active, that you really aren’t feeling as well as you could? Perhaps you need to take a closer look at your nutrient intake. Notice I did not say “nutritional.” That’s because we tend to focus on carbs, proteins, fats; which ones to eat and which ones to avoid. But we forget that the foods we eat are also supposed to give us nutrients that help our bodies to function optimally and remove toxins that come from what we ingest or even from everyday metabolic functions of our body!
There is a saying that “what you focus on grows.” It's something I first learned as a yoga teacher and then again as a qigong teacher. The idea is that our thoughts affect our reality. Another way to think of it is: “the energy we put out is the energy we attract.” And our body, our thoughts and our emotions are all made up of energy. But is it really true?