Tag Archives: wellness

Extreme Spirit

I’m a thirty-something, a later-on-down-the-road thirty-something, but a thirty-something nonetheless.   OK, so I used to be a thirty-something, now I’m a forty-something AND a liar.

Much like you, I’m a very busy person.  I am pulled in a plethora of directions by a multitude of people each and every day that I get out of bed.  Which, incidentally, is when it all begins.  A single day has a month’s worth of activity packed into it and lasts, seemingly, about 20 minutes.   I pass strangers on the road, in the coffee shop, and while I’m about my usual business and occasionally I will see one that seems to be … smiling.  How is it possible that they have time for smiling?  And what are they smiling about?  I’m confused, haunted and tormented by their smiles.  But ultimately, I want what they have.  It’s some sort of ‘oomph’ that sets them apart from the struggling, the downtrodden and the doomed.  

Perhaps I just need to rearrange my furniture to be in line with my “chi”, or maybe its much more, like I should be seeing a new age herbalist that will begin with concocting special ‘smiling’ recipes for me that contain eye of Newt and molecules from the Dea Sea, and then I’ll be wrapped from head to toe with spirit blessed rice parchment that will have been painlessly pieced together by nearly extinct rain forest pixies, who will then squeeze their magic tears into my eye sockets each night before I fall into deep slumber.

I may look into that, I believe meeting a pixie would make me slightly giddy, and I haven’t been giddy since I was a twenty-something.  However, I believe the truth behind these smiles is less about fairytale elixirs and more about their resolve.  Their spirits are uncrushable.  Each day is an adventure and their curious minds leave nothing undiscovered.  They are life enthusiasts and their grit for adventure extends far beyond the norm.  Their passion and vigor can be very contagious and after a little more than a brief encounter with one you find yourself on their mailing lists for dog sledding in Alaska and mountain hiking on Mt. Kilimanjaro.  You know these people.

Maybe we should strive to live our lives with just a flicker or a hint of that ‘oomph’.  I, for one, am going to stop scowling at the smiling people and instead remind myself to find the adventure for myself that seems to have found them.  Something fun, something extraordinary, something good for my health and spirit, and something that will make strangers scowl at me.

I’m not much of a team player, I have problems with sharing, control and authority… and I lie, so traditional team sports are out.  I’m far too buff as it is <cough> for free weights, and I bore easily with mindless repetition. 

But… I do know a guy who could set me up for a week in a yurt with a magical chanting goat (I’m on his mailing list) and he claims you just haven’t lived until you’ve sung with a Bovidae.

Look, I’m smiling already.

 

-uberscribbler

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A Statement of Need is a Statement indeed!

insanity1I have spent a considerable amount of time exploring the link between physical healthcare (the body) and psychological healthcare (the mind) as it pertains to the Canadian government healthcare system.  All of the mandates from the Minister of Health right on down is about protecting the health and safety of all Canadians.  I may need to check the Minister’s handbook for their definition of health to be sure, but I think I’ve managed to establish a gap. 

Amidst a sea of body do-gooders, there is one organization or unit that promotes mental health, aiming to maintain and improve positive mental health and well being for all of the population.   You just have to be mad dog crazy in order to use these resources.  I mean eyeball rolling and frothing at the mouth crazy.  If you are only confused, frustrated, and slightly twitchy.. well.. you likely won’t get the referral. 

It seems to me that we’ve spent decades and decades socially engineering ourselves with unhelpful help.   Fast forward to the year 2009, where the conditions of life and moral hazards are shadowed only by imminent economic and ecological disasters of global proportions.  Us worry?  Pishaw!  I can only imagine that the eyeball rolling might be on the rise, and then we will see a bottle-necked system struggling to put out the insanity fire.  Good news for all the “ologists” out there. 

I’m disappointed with the policymakers and their reactive care.  What good is their PhD in textbook knowledge when there is no understanding that the body dies without the mind?   I bet Mr. PhD sees the dentist every six months for some preventative maintenance and attention.  Where’s my mind maintenance?  Just a little cleaning is all… loosen up the guk and keep me on the straight and narrow.   Stop me from this inexorable spread into the common pool of lunacy.   Well… at least I will have shiny teeth…

With this project and my plight to expose just a small aspect of emotional wellness (in relation to a cancer diagnosis) I have comfortably fallen into the role of emotional educator and resilience scientist.  Through my discussions and interviews with people struggling with this disease the best cocktail I found to offer them was to approach them with consolation and encouragement and leave them with confidence and inspiration.   We should treat everyone we encounter with the same ingredients.  A very human philosophy aimed to help people help themselves.  To heal their minds and dig deep for their own resilience.  We must become a race of doers and not just helpers.

Imagine for a moment what it would be like to live in a society where most folks were emotionally well-adjusted.   Where well-being had human value,  putting the health of our minds and emotions on the same level as our bodies.  Less crime, less hate, less self-pity and loathing.  That’s just to start.  One might even be able to hear choruses of Kumbaya coming from under street bridges and that stranger that passes you on the sidewalk might just say hello and look you in the eye.  Spend real time with real people talking about real things.  Needs, wishes, desires and even fears. 

What could be more important than validating someone’s existence?  Try it.

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