Thursday, December 27, 2018

2018 REFLECTIONS





traditional Nisgá foods



As each year approaches the year end, it has been my practice to reflect on the year that has passed. 

2018 has been both challenging and rewarding for me.  The beginning of the year is mostly a blur because I spent huge part of it in hospital following surgery and a stroke. What that experience has taught me is the value of slowing down, taking notice of each moment and being completely present.  It provided me with an opportunity to look at life from a different perspective.  AND as a result I started investigating, reading and listening to podcasts on neurology and executive functioning of the brain and how it connects with other areas of our body. I marvel at our biology and how our body is designed to survive. Our nervous system, our digestive system, our cardiovascular system; they all totally fascinate me.

I found that my experience (including the loss of certain functions I had always taken for granted) lead me to want to be in control of my health and, to do that, I decided to expand my knowledge and to begin learning new things on a subject I knew very little about. Namely, the brain, and more generally health. I viewed this as an exciting opportunity. There have been many times in the past few months that I have begun a sentence by saying, “I have been listening to this podcast”…, or, recently “a book I am reading stated that”…

This learning has also changed some of my core beliefs, such as that you can get the required protein eating an exclusively plant-based diet. The more I researched it, the more evidence I uncovered that this is not entirely correct. Evidence suggests that getting the required protein you must consume so much more than greens. I am sure vegans do not want to hear this. However, each person must do what they believe is right for them, and what is right for them at a given time. I am also a firm believer in neuroplasticity; that the more you learn the more open to learning you become.  

After over 20 years of being a vegetarian I have returned to eating meat, wild meat that is. Interestingly, it wasn't as difficult as I thought it would be.

Some positive effects I noticed early on, is that I sleep more soundly, and have more energy and - best of all - I wake up refreshed. Minor aches and pains disappeared. My memory improved, I can't say if it is related to eating meat or not, because I have been doing other things to improve my memory as well. A couple of months after being discharged from the hospital I noticed that I had some residual foggy brain periods, although in the last several weeks I feel that too has dissipated. I believe my left side neglect has also improved, which was confirmed by my physician.   

Studies have showed that a huge part of having quality life is to engage with others, we are after all social beings, to that end, I have created a community online using the Facebook platform. The thinking behind that for me was that I found social network platforms were superficial at best and lacking in satisfying the need for meaningful connections to others.

I figured that if I wanted a deeper connection then I would have to create one to accommodate my own desire and that of others who are also searching for a deeper connection. I thought of my many friends who are critical thinkers, innovators, thought provokers, who would enjoy being engaged on an intellectual level. After identifying 40 such people I created “We Belong” and currently we have 103 members.  There is a broad selection of professionals in this group, from lawyers, general physicians, MDs, authors, engineers, Buddhist monks, practicing meditators, former First Nation Chiefs, University professors, philosophers, First Nation Elders, film producers, scientists, students, life coaches, artists, counselors, nurses, occupational therapists and dentists.

It has only been a couple of months since I started this community of forward-thinking people. Progress has been slow in that members are still figuring out how to behave, and how to engage one another. However, I am encouraged because I am noticing more and more that our members are opening up more and trusting each other.

At one time a couple of weeks back, I thought of reducing the group down to the 20 or so members thinking it might encourage more conversations, but then I decided that it would be better to allow the process to evolve on its own. 

I am really excited for the possibility to have a community of engaged people who will be game changers in a major way.  The possibilities for this group are unlimited. My long-term vision for the community is to collectively produce ideas and outcomes to improve society as a whole.  Think big! Some of you, I know personally have already had breakthroughs and have made a difference in  communities and the world: I just need you to open up and share it with the rest of us.

On a personal note, we are a family who has taken the step to reduce our environmental footprint by joining the electric car movement.  This is exciting because I no longer feel guilty getting from point A to B, and that feels good. Hubby has blog about it here. http://teslaguy.blogspot.com/2018/12/joining-tesla-movement.html  

What prompted you to join We Belong? How will you make a difference to our conversation? Everyone in this group has strength in a specific area. Identify your strengths.  Here I will start:

1.     My “Super Power” is being intuitive and able to teach others to quiet their mind and meditate.
2.     I am able to recognize others’ uniqueness and to encourage them to reveal their best self.
3.     I am able to communicate in a way that makes you really feel I am listening to you.             



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