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I need to find the right word. Energy abators, downgraders, or compressors.

SARK talks about what makes your Energy Contract.  These are the things that bring you down like toxins, exhaustion, isolation, stress, worry, co-dependence .  .  . I’m trying to find the positive slant on this. And settle on a different name: Energy Abridgers, Dwindlers, or Whittlers.

What if you’ve had a busy day?  Maybe even a long one.  You’re tired and you want to rest, but you can’t settle down.  Even if your body is weary, your mind may still be reeling. There are times when you truly just want to relax.

Surely there must be healthy, fast ways to calm down the energy.  To modulate or minimize it when it’s pumping out of control.

Herb tea isn’t bad.  I tried a cup of Holy Basil tea last night that worked quite well.  Chamomile might do the trick, too.  Still, it’s not as fast or easy as pouring a glass of wine or opening a beer. And, depending on how late it is, tea can get me up in the night. Meditation would be good if I could sit still long enough for it to take hold.

Foot rubs (or any kind of massage) would certainly downsize or prune my energy level.  But I need to have a willing massager, ready whenever the need should arise.

A heavy meal comes to mind as well, but that doesn’t qualify in the healthy department. Political discussions have the opposite effect.

Any ideas?

From Traveling Hopefully by Libby Gill

The first time I tried to find myself in “Fairy Tales, Myths, and Literary Works” I gave up. I made a few lists, but never did it. I felt like most of the stories I read had heros rather than heroines. It was hard to pinpoint any one. Even after going through the list provided and searching the internet, I couldn’t decide. It was when I finally relaxed, of course. It just came to me: Morgaine from the “Mists of Avalon.” Though I was never used in the dramatic ways she was, I’ve often felt manipulated or talked into doing things I really didn’t want to do. Morgaine always wanted to help, but usually ended up feeling like she made matters worse. She should have been treated with more respect, since she was the King’s sister, but instead felt like an outsider, a second-class citizen. She was strange, being a trained Priestess, so many people were uncomfortable around her. Lancelet was her true love, though he cared for her, he didn’t return her affections. Might have been better for all concerned if he had! I really like having stories as a structure on which to see my own life.

Krista found this very easy. Jack and the Beanstalk jumped right out at her. She feels it will be helpful to her to put some things into context.

“Tool #8: Looking at Life Themes Through Verbal Meditation:”

I have been journalling for many, many years now. If I miss my three pages for more than a day or two, I feel it. I have to bring my journal with me on vacation and find time to write. It’s like a day without sunshine. Natalie Goldberg, who first got me into writing every morning, said, always answer any questions you bring up in your journalling. I have stuck to that and it has helped me more times than I can count. But I haven’t tried posing a question before bed and then writing about it upon rising. I keep forgetting where I put the question, but it’s been working, anyway. It will just crop up in my writing. Very powerful tool! I promised to keep “Posing Powerful Questions.” Krista promised to do more “Free-Flowing Meditation.”

Krista’s life has gotten busier with the onset of Spring. Though I have completed Chapter 5, she’s cancelled a few meetings. When I talk to her again, I’ll let her know that I’m moving ahead and she can join me when she can.

We continue traveling hopefully ~

I’m feeling out of sorts. It could be because for three days in a row I’ve had to get up and go out. But I think it’s more than that. After all, the outings have not been difficult or unpleasant. I believe the problem is I haven’t gotten in my time at the desk.

My regular routine finds me writing 3 to 4 hours in the morning. Monday, I took a class, Tuesday, I met a friend for lunch, Wednesday, I had a meeting. Thursday, I had some work away from desk. That’s too many days in a row for me. When I get home in the afternoon, there’s usually something else going on . . . or it’s just not conducive to sitting down and writing, especially when I have to conjure up something to write. Like for my blog.

I know, not everyone has the same need as I do to put words down. But I believe most people have something – playing piano, needlepoint, spending time with the kids, working out, orange juice – that makes them feel whole and complete in a day. I find writing every day is crucial to my well-being.

Nothing else will do. I must put pen to paper or fingers to keys for a certain minimum daily requirement of words. Perhaps I’m built that way. Surely I’ve created that well-worn track for myself. It pays to know what that thing you need is. And it’s convenient if that’s what makes your living.

Thanks for letting me spill out a few hundred words here. I feel better.

Reflexology is one of my favorite healing modalities. Who wouldn’t make contented sounds when having their feet rubbed by an expert? Evidently, there are reflex areas in the feet and hands that connect to various parts of the body. By rubbing specific points, the reflexologist relaxes and loosens the flow of energy through the body. It’s an amazing feeling when someone rubs your foot and you feel it in your shoulder. Reflexology is something you can learn to do for yourself, in between visits.

Judith Dobbs, a reflexologist in my area said this about it on her web site,, “It works like remote control into the body. By pressing on the reflexes on the feet, I can tell if the client has a headache, stiff neck, low back pain, if they drink enough water or eat too much sugar! Usually by the end of a half hour session, most headaches and aches and pains change, if not disappear, and my client is left with a wonderful sense of well-balance.”

Reflexology is especially good for stress-related issues, like digestion, headaches, and insomnia. It can also help arthritis, back pain and hormonal imbalances, according to I didn’t see anything in my research about this, but I had a planter’s wart on my foot that had been surgically burned off when I was child and came back many years later. Judith, in several sessions, was able to make it go away! I don’t know how she did it. A friend of mine, with the same problem, had surgery. Though our recovery time was about the same, she was laid up for most of hers and I got to have a series of foot rubs and no post-op stress. had some wonderful interactive charts to show which areas on the foot and hands correspond to which parts of the body. It’s worth a look.

Tell me, what is so wrong with trying to protect our planet?

Regulating emissions isn’t going to hurt anyone. The auto industry, maybe, but they are for it.

What could be the purpose of making this up? Let’s say it is a natural fluctuation in temperatures and the situation is not as dire as many have said. Could this be a hoax to . . . I’m not sure what . . . raise taxes, put an undue strain on big businesses? Whatever for? Maybe it’s a secret plan to clean up the environment.

I’m sure there are some scientists who say it isn’t global warming (manmade or not.) There are many who say it is serious. Is it worth risking our planet?

If the global warming proponents are wrong, we’ll have cleaned up our environment. Perhaps we will have spent a little more money, but we will all be living better and healthier. If the skeptics are wrong, we won’t be around to argue about it.

Much has been written about the value of taking good care of yourself. Julia Cameron, in her legendary work, The Artist’s Way, tells us that “treating yourself like a precious object will make you strong.” It makes sense that if you are nurturing yourself, you are giving yourself what you need to be healthy and strong. Not only does it benefit your own well-ness, it makes you a better lover and care-giver. Spiritual teacher, Paulette Terrels, said, “”It is our own self love that enables us to truly love others.” It’s easy to do, you just need to think about it and eventually it will become a habit. Special Agent Dale Cooper from Twin Peaks believed in it. “Every day, give yourself a present.”

You might start by noticing places you already nurture yourself or places where you could use some nurturing. Here are some ideas to get you going ~

1) Slow down and allow yourself to fully enjoy what you’re doing. Take a moment to look around and say, “Ah, yes, this is good.” Be aware that you’re drinking Agent Cooper’s beloved hot cup of joe (quiet cup of tea or beverage of your choice) and how good it tastes. At a red light, take a few long, slow breaths. You might try eating a meal slowly. You’ll be surprised at how refreshed and satisfied you feel afterwards.

2) Call or write to someone you’ve been thinking about and spend some time with them.

3) Plan a date with yourself. It may seem awkward at first, but if you let yourself, you’ll come up with all kinds of fun things. What about that guitar that’s collecting dust in the corner? Pull it out and play with it for an hour. Or go to a museum. The trick is to plan it with excitement and show up. Surely you can squeeze in an hour or 20 minutes for yourself once a week. (See more about these dates in The Artist’s Way.)

4) Book time to do something you really love doing. Give yourself a limited time if you need to, but make the time and stick to it. Life is so much richer when you do things that bring you joy. (Maybe just watch a funny movie. I recommend It’s a Gift with W.C. Fields or The Marx Brothers.)

5) By all means, if you hear yourself saying you need to get some rest, or slow down, or eat better, do something, even one little thing, to show yourself you’re listening.

6) Take the day, the morning or afternoon, an hour off from time to time – before you need it! It’s so much more fun to have time off when you’re not feeling sick or wiped out.

7) Get a massage. This stimulates the body and helps it to function better. You’ll definitely feel pampered. Women can get their hair done, a manicure or pedicure. Men can take a steam bath. A foot rub will please everyone! If I had my way, I’d have my feet rubbed every day. Find a reflexoligist to give you a foot rub and see how good you feel about life!

8)  Listen for when you say, “I’ve been meaning to ______” Book time and do it. You’ll feel better if you do.

9) Buy yourself a gift. Doesn’t have to be expensive. Just take yourself out and buy something that makes you smile.

If you find all this way too much for your busy schedule, try this:

First, keep a list with your schedule of things you’d like to do, that would be fun, bring you joy or make you feel loved.

Second, book time in your calendar.

Third, guard it.

The first couple times you say no to other plans during that time, you may feel guilty, but forge on and soon it will get easier. The trick is that if you absolutely positively have to give up the time, reschedule it. Keep rescheduling until you do it.

I promise, once you get into the habit of nurturing yourself, you’ll be looking for ways you can do it every day.

I tend to suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder (S.A.D.). I find it builds over the season. I’ve felt it more these last few weeks, as it tries to become Spring, but just can’t get over the hump. Here in the Northeast, we’ve had multiple days of rain or clouds. It decreases my energy and leaves me wanting to just eat.

The Mayo Clinic web site links it to depression. They say lethargy, fatigue, hopelessness, anxiety, loss of energy, social withdrawal, oversleeping, appetite changes and cravings for carbohydrates (comfort food) are also common. Consequently, weight loss. And also difficulty concentrating and processing. What was I talking about?

Some of the causes are the state of your mental health to begin with, genetics, age and a disruption of your circadian rhythms. I like that one the best. Technically, the reduction of sunlight lowers the Serotonin (a factor in migraines if you remember). Melatonin increases with more darkness and both combine to create depression.

I wrote a piece once called “Winter Woes from Head to Toes.” Not only do I become a hermit in the winter – only going out if I absolutely have to – I also have bouts of dry skin on my feet, hands and face. My back gets sore more often from the lack of movement. My stomach hurts from the heavier food. My hair collects static and is more unwieldy than in humidity. I’m grumpy and out of sorts. I’m not a big fan of winter.

Light Therapy is the first recommendation. (See my previous blog on this.) I’ve heard tell of folks who have had lots of success with this. I have a full-spectrum light in my office, but I don’t sit close enough to it. There is a problem of it stimulating too much, so be sure to sit under your light in the morning They warned if you have bipolar or other manic conditions, don’t use the light, but you would probably know that already. It’s also a good idea to spend as much time outside as you can stand. The usual prescriptions for good health apply: get some exercise, take good care of yourself, manage your stress, socialize more. Seems a tough job when I have no energy, don’t feel like seeing anyone and spend more time than usual stressing about the weather. A remedy I particularly like is to take a vacation in a sunny, warm place! I have one full-proof way to avoid it: Live in a warmer climate. Amen.

Spring is a time for renewal. For well-being, try starting a new project Plant a fresh bed of flowers, take up a new hobby, paint a picture, take a class, throw a pot. Sometimes we get stuck in the same old ruts. Start anew for the Springtime! Fresh enthusiasm might carry you through to completion.

Many health practitioners recommend tonics to wash away the winter blues. Try some Stinging Nettles. Cook up some Dandelion Greens. Greens are full of nutrients. Have some elderberry wine. How about a Sarsaparilla to shake things up!

Spring is a time for bringing out the lighter, brighter clothes for warmer weather. There’s a feeling of excitement, anticipating the fun to come.

Cleaning is a time-honored tradition in the Spring. I’m not always up for a full-fledged, drag-everything-out clean. I like to hose down the fans, clean the car, or get rid of some things I don’t need. Any little bit will chase out the doldrums. Opening the windows can wipe the house clean without having to do a thing. I often wash the blankets before putting them up for the summer. While I’m at it, some new pillows or sheets freshen my attitude.

There is a connectedness in marking the changing of the seasons. Other cultures make a bigger fuss of it than we do. The Japanese have many festivals in Spring. Some for the crops, some for cleansing. In China they celebrate the Spring, as they do in Mexico. It’s important for well-being to feel a part of something.

Nature is a powerful force and it pays to honor it in whatever way you can.

My image of migraine headaches is a billowy-dressed woman of black and white movies, raising the back of her slender hand to her pale forehead and sighing. “I have a meegraine,” she says and sashays to her boudoir, avoiding whatever is going on.

But the fact is many people suffer from migraines which can be extremely painful, last from 4 to 72 hours and are not easy to treat. Women do have them more than men. The Mayo Clinic site says that 17% or women and 7% of men have migraines. The higher number for women may be because hormonal changes can bring on headaches.

All kinds of things can. The weather, flashing lights and unpleasant odors in the vicinity. Some “triggers’ are possible to get a handle on. Nitrates, sulfites and tyramine, found in foods and alcohol can start a migraine. There are a number of possible culprits listed on But eating the food one time might create a headache, other times, not.

Most of the talk seems to point to interrupted sleep patterns, getting too much sleep or not enough, as a cause. Stress, too, can set off a migraine.

Since the triggers are so unpredictable, it’s hard to know what to do to prevent them. Perhaps watching what you eat, making sure to get good sleep, taking moderate exercise and reducing stress couldn’t hurt. Keep a food diary to see what you’re eating. Stick to a regular bedtime and try some things like meditation. There are plenty of books and information online about reducing stress. You can start with something simple like taking deep, slow breaths at red lights.

There are several over-the-counter and prescription medications. I’m not a medical doctor and cannot speak to such things. Regular and severe migraines should probably be treated with medication, but there are some lifestyle changes and alternative methods that can be used in conjunction. Acupuncture has had good results on migraines. Also, Biofeedback. I always say that Chiropractic rocks! Regular adjustments keep you healthy and wise.

Whatever you choose, I wish you well. May you find relief.

1. Eat Wisely – choose good foods, but also think about how you eat. Are you stressed out, eat too fast, with too many distractions? Is your food appealing to the eye as well as the mouth? Eating junk food may feel good in the short-term, but eating healthy and nutritious food gives you a more sustained good feeling. Not to mention strength and energy!

2. Make Enjoyable Movement part of your day – whatever that may be. It’s not necessary to go to a gym for three hours. Find a sport or activity you love. The best exercise programs contain movements you love to do. That’s the best way to sustain it. Getting movement in every day, in some form or another will keep your body running well. If you can’t move, spend a little time imagining it. Studies show that can work the same magic.

3. Sleep Well – be sure to get the right amount of sleep, for you. Statistics say most people function on far less sleep than they should. Be sure you’re getting enough and you will function much better. And be in a better mood. If you can, napping is a great addition to a full night’s sleep. (Best-selling author Sark claims the more naps you take, the more money you make!)

4. Have Fun – find things that give you that feeling of delight and do them often. Rest is one thing, but fun is something else. Best to choose healthy forms of fun. A good laugh may be enough. Take it easy and keep it light.

5. Be Kind to Others – the more the better. Getting angry, frustrated and aggravated at others impedes the work of your body. It’s an amazing thing what being good to others can do for your mind as well as your body.

6. Think Good Thoughts – keep yourself calm and at peace with positive thoughts. Life is what it is, but that doesn’t mean you can’t have good thoughts. Being grateful for what you have, rather than thinking about what you don’t, is a really good place to start. Using gentle words on yourself will help, too. Would you say it to a loved one? If not, don’t talk to yourself that way!

7. Smile, a lot – it’s amazing what it can do for your mood, even if you fake it. Spreading good cheer to others will make your day a little smoother.

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