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Jo L

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Jo L last won the day on November 4 2020

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  1. Growing up, I had several uncles who played in a fairly popular band called Whiskey River (very apropos) and we used to go to their outdoor concerts when I was a young child, so I feel like music has always been in my life. I listen to a wide variety of artists and styles of music. Lately I listen to a lot of chanting; everything from Tina Turner to Deva Primal, Snatam Kaur, Krishna Das, Peruquois, Ajeet Kaur, etc. Chanting is soothing and facilitates my writing. I also love Madonna, and have seen her in concert five times! I've always admired her strength and attitude; her breaking of rules and constant evolution. Other artists I enjoy listening to are PJ Harvey, Tori Amos, Kate Bush, Prince, Pink Floyd, Fleetwood Mac, Ani Defranco (she recently came out with a collaborative release about prison life that is absolutely brilliant). I have to be in a certain mood to listen to music because it does provoke so much emotion. There are times when I play certain artists to provoke certain emotions. For example, there are certain Ani Defranco songs, such as 'Dilate' and 'Untouchable Face' ("fuck you, and your untouchable face, fuck you for existing in the first place") that I play if I want to release anger; I typically dance while I listen to the songs really loudly. There are other songs, like PJ Harvey's 'Blue Drug' or Pink Floyd's 'Learning to Fly' that I listen to if I want to cry. Other songs bring back memories- any song by The Cure reminds me of my older sister, who was obsessed with The Cure when we were growing up. Music by Neil Young, Roxy Music, The Moody Blues reminds me of my Dad. This music that evokes memories is also very emotional for me, and sometimes I'll have to change the radio dial. I am grateful for the richness that music adds to life.
  2. I appreciate your awareness and attitude Jen. I, too, am going to practice connecting to what's important. And we are actually having sunny and warm weather way up here in MN so I am enjoying that by going on long walks. It helps distract me and ground me back into my body and calm mind.
  3. Hi Faune! Nice to hear from you. I hear you about being stressed and I can say that this week has been tense for me as well. Thank you, Gillian, for acknowledging the tension here in the US, and I, too, have found solace in yoga, meditation, and silent group meditations. Writing has also helped me. I struggle to understand how so many individuals can vote for a leader who is openly racist and misogynistic. David, I hear what you're saying about social activism being a burden or maybe an escape for those who have yet to process their own trauma adequately. I think it's important, however, to acknowledge, like you have, that kindness toward oneself and others is itself a form of "activism" and is just as valid and worthy as working for a non-profit organization, volunteering, completing social projects, donating time and money, etc. As you so eloquently said, Gillian, there is "the power of the compassionate acts that go unseen." One of the most powerful, compassionate acts a person can take is getting help for themselves. This takes an incredible amount of courage and strength, and needs to be recognized as an act of compassion. In a sense, self-help is social activism, since a person who has healed their own trauma has a wealth of knowledge and experience from which to draw upon to heal others and the world.
  4. Hi Tanya, I hear that you are being very conscientious and planful about your son's visit, and I think that's commendable and a great start! I would suggest the following: 1. Agree to listen reflectively. We hear things through our own filters and often misperceive what the other is saying, so if a difficult topic comes up, practice reflective listening, which essentially means repeating what the other says to ensure that you are hearing the message correctly. For example, if my sister says, "I'm really frustrated because you always interrupt me" I might think she's calling me rude, but instead of assuming that and getting upset, I repeat, "so you're upset because you feel like I cut you off when you're talking." That way, she feels heard and I can try to put myself in her shoes. 2. Agree to give each person a turn to speak so both parties feel heard, instead of one person walking away. 3. Agree to time outs if things get to heated. Rules for time out: make sure you agree on a specific amount of time to separate, do physically separate, make sure you come back together after the agreed upon amount of time and calmly talk about the issue to come to a resolution. 4. Agree not to go to bed angry. 5. Agree to disagree. It's ok not to agree on things. In fact, respecting each person's individuality is critical in allowing autonomy and freedom within the family, rather than conformity and feelings of over-identification. 6. Use humor! Family issues are often quite comical if you can lighten up about them:) 7. Always practice non-judgment and radical acceptance. Recognize that differences of opinion are natural and do not necessarily mean disrespect.
  5. I agree with you Rachel. I find Pema Chodron to be very helpful and have read many of her books and attended some of her workshops. Her recent book, "Welcoming the Unwelcome" is particularly poignant and so relevant in today's world. I also like her book "Start Where You Are, A Guide to Compassionate Living." Some of the wisdom from that book: "If you know how to die then you know how to live and if you know how to live then you'll know how to die. Suzuki Roski said, 'Just be willing to die over and over again.'" "Resistance to unwanted circumstances has the power to keep those circumstances alive and well for a very long time." "The best way to use unwanted circumstances on the path of enlightenment is not to resist but to lean into them. Befriending emotions or developing compassion for those embarrassing aspects or ourselves, the ones that we thing of as sinful or bad, becomes the raw material, the juicy stuff with which we can work to awaken ourselves." "Instead of habitually clinging to what's delightful, you could become accustomed to giving it away, sending it out to others on the outbreath. This enables you always to maintain a joyful mind. It begins to ease away the burden of maintaining your own private happiness as well as your usual load of unhappy situations and minor irritations- the burden of ego."
  6. Gillian, thanks so much for the link to iBme! They have such excellent programming! So thrilled for the resource...thanks again!
  7. Thanks Gillian and Rachel, it's nice to be back! Thank you for being so kind and welcoming
  8. Thank you Gillian for the lovely meditation, and I appreciate your comments Rachel, about Tonglen meditation. I am practicing compassion in a few different ways. I'm starting off with practicing self-compassion. I've learned a lot about self-compassion from Kristin Neff, and as someone who tends to take care of others, I've come to understand that I can only give from a place of fullness inside. I also practice compassion by volunteering and being active in causes in believe in, such as racial justice and human rights. Another way I practice compassion is by being mindful in everyday interactions- listening reflectively, demonstrating genuine positive regard, practicing non-judgment, and looking for opportunities to complement and give encouragement (not the same as giving advice).
  9. Jo, How are you? You have been so quiet that I have grown concerned and hope you are well.

    1. Ali Zien

      Ali Zien

      I also came to visit, I was concerned about her absence. I pray that everything is okay

  10. Jo L


    Hi Leanne, The most comprehensive book about childhood trauma repercussions and treatment is “The Body Keeps The Score” by Bessel van der Kolk. There are some great online resources: https://www.childtrauma.org https://www.childmind.org https://www.crisisprevention.org https://www.nctsn.org (national childhood traumatic stress network) These websites have a lot of resources and information.
  11. Jo L


    Hi Leanne, I'm a psychologist so very familiar with the exciting world of child psychology. I recommend the book "The Psychology of the Child" by Jean Piaget, which is a classic. It's not necessarily 'fun' to read and is pretty dense, but is full of fascinating information about child development; intellectual, emotional, and social aspects of child development. There's also "How to Talk so Kids Will Listen...And Listen So Kids Will Talk" by Adele Faber and Elaine Mazlish, which is a practical and helpful book. If you're looking for books about childhood mental illness, there's "Disorders of Childhood: Development and Psychopathology' by Robin Hornik Parritz or "Case Studies in Child and Adolescent Psychopathology" by DeDe Wohlfarth. Also, a helpful book is "Creative Interventions for Troubled Children and Youth" by Liana Lowenstein and a really comprehensive book about how trauma affects kids and people at any age called "The Body Keeps the Score" by Bessel van der Kolk.
  12. Hello Franca! Welcome! Thanks for the resource on raja yoga. I have some experience there but great to have more information. How are you going about getting into Corporate Mindfulness if I may ask?
  13. Hi Karen, Welcome! What a cool job and fun course to create! I'm a psychologist, life and wellness coach, meditation and yoga teacher. I'm wondering if you are looking for specific ideas or resources?
  14. I'm with Gillian, sorry you had a tough night. I have an idea (everyone try this!) Close your eyes (not until after you read this Wrap your arms around yourself and give yourself a hug. Say to yourself slowly (silently or outloud) by name, I love you. I'm here for you. I'm listening. I see you. ( Repeat as many times as you want)
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