Things I’m lovin’ right now

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The way to know life is to love many things.

Vincent Van Gough 

My friend and fellow blogger, Sarah from clevercook, inspired me to consider things I’m loving right now. She often does a post of fab food and cooking ingredients she has discovered.

Book crossing
This is a fun way to pay it forward in a mysterious kind of way. Basically, you leave books in different places for someone else to enjoy. The theory is the book travels from place to place, reader to reader and, if registered, its journey can be followed. I’ve enjoyed sharing my read and loved books this way. It’s always interesting to wonder who will pick them up.

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Paleo and Primal cafes
Ahhh. At last. A place I can eat without looking like a fussy, freaky, foodie. These cafes offer sugar free, dairy free, wheat free meals packed with delicious goodness. I’ve recently visited the Primal Pantry for a sensational breakfast and the Paleo cafe at Paddington for a sumptuous lunch. I’m loving the bone broth.

Geocaching
I’ve been a member now for about four years after being introduced to this fun pastime by my son. It’s a global game akin to treasure hunting.  When I say game it’s not a sport exactly or something you have to do with lots of people, though you can if you want to. It does get you out into the world and visiting some fascinating places. I have found 617 caches hidden in various places from bushland and urban areas around my city, to Tasmaina and the Colosseum in Rome. Its great fun, check it out.

Carol Dweck and mindset
I’m a total groupie. I met, shook hands with, got a photo with her and had her sign my book last week. Carol Dweck is a guru on mindset and I’m enjoying her book and researching mindset.

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New workouts
You’ve got to love change for its reinvigorating properties. I’ve been experimenting lately with heavy weights. I saw a marked increase in my strength over twelve weeks when I incrementally increased the weights I was lifting so I could only do four repetitions. It’s pretty awesome to witness a change like that. For instance, I began pressing 40 kilograms for 12 repetitions and completing 3 sets of these to pressing 120 kilos for three sets of four repetitions each. Leg presses that is, gosh not bench presses yet.

Now I’ve moved onto body weight and resistance band exercises with a focus on unilateral training.  It’s a nice change, totally different. It’s still a good workout, I actually feel light and buzzy when I leave the gym each day.

Sesame oil
My friend and mentor Nicole from Cauldrons and Cupcakes shared a tip for those feeling anxious, particularly after earth tremors.  She suggested the use of sesame oil on the soles of the feet at night.  Can I suggest you wear socks if you try this as sesame oil, while gorgeously scented, is dark in colour and may stain your sheets. For the past two weeks I have been massaging a little oil into the soles of my feet before bed and I have slept better than I have in a very long time. Dreamt even.

Bubbles
I’m loving bubbles right now. I’m loving them because they are whimsical, fun and totally frivolous. There is no sensibility or maturity or rationality required with bubbles. I am seeing bubbles everywhere and they make me feel happy, light and full of gratitude for such simple pleasures.

Chiropractic adjustments.
I’ve enjoyed several sessions with a chiropractor recently and feel less crotchety, more fluid and vibrant. Yay!

Essential oils
Mmmm. I’m using a number of essential oils right now that are pure magic. Lavender, rosemary, peppermint, frankincense, geranium, orange and pine. There is no need for chemical based perfumes when you have can have a natural alternative with healing properties.

Zinc
I have to add zinc in here because I heard the other day that it has been shown to prevent colds and flu. My workplace has been hit hard by a dreadful flu, nearly everyone has had it and been off work for several weeks. Everyone that is except the woman who told me about the zinc and me. We figure it’s got to be the zinc that’s saved us.  What a blessing in disguise. I’m taking the zinc because my hair is falling out but I haven’t had the flu. Got to love it!

I could go on but who wants to read more? It’s nice to realise in the routine of life that little things stand out and bring moments of joy.

What are you lovin’ right now?

Shannyn

 

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Transforming the meaning of struggle

Image courtesy of Tribesport

Image courtesy of Tribesport

A person who never made a mistake never tried anything new.

Albert Einstein

I am excited. My skin is tingling. I feel like all the neurons and synapses in my brain are firing all at once. I feel like there are hundreds of tiny catherine wheels exploding all over my body. I have that ‘just stepped off a roller coaster rush’ (not that I do that too often).

I had the opportunity to hear Dr Carol Dweck speak this morning. Dr Dweck is a leading researcher in the field of personality, social and developmental psychologies. She is a professor at Stanford University and is well-known for her work on mindset.

In a nutshell, a very small nutshell, Dr Dweck’s work looks at two types of mindset, growth and fixed mindset. When we utilise a growth mindset we believe skill and intelligence can be developed through effort and practice. With a fixed mindset we believe intelligence or skill can’t be changed.

Today Dweck said something that really got me thinking. She challenged us to transform our meaning of effort and struggle. Our current value system associates making mistakes and errors as something negative, something to hide and shrink from. Whereas obtaining new skills and knowledge with ease is praised and respected. There is a widespread belief that if you are smart things should come naturally.

How often have you heard comments like “You did that quickly and easily. That’s impressive.” or ” Well done, you got them all right. You must be really smart”?

What if we changed our value system and easy meant boring? What if we thought that anything we could do with ease was really a waste of our time? What would that sound like?  We’d hear things like “You did that quickly and easily. You must not have been challenged. Would you like to work on something that helps you learn and grow?”

What if we changed our value system and struggling with something, making and then processing our mistakes meant we were working on something worthwhile? What would that look like?

What if we changed our value system to reflect that struggle means we are working hard on something we value?  How would that feel?

I believe this would change everything. We wouldn’t bemoan our areas of growth. We’d share them with enthusiasm, in a collegial way, to gain understanding, insight and momentum for change and improvement. Instead of deficit thinking we’d approach our life lessons with innovation. We’d start to love ourselves a little more. We’d become more confident that we could face any new challenge with effort and the right strategy.

This concept has so many implications, for all of us. It’s got me wanting to race outside and turn cartwheels. It’s also got me wanting to process it more and work out ways to enact it in my life.

What messages have you heard recently that resonated with you?

Shannyn