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The Benefits of Small Life Adventures

Before my week off, everyone asked, “What are you doing for your vacation?” I did have some things planned, but for me it’s mostly about what I’m not doing: the same old, same old. I like what I do in a normal week, but it gets stale. For me, vacation is a chance to do something, anything different. It doesn’t have to be exciting to be enjoyable for me. I took about equal pleasure in watching my daughter water pretty much everything in the backyard with her watering can, seeing sites in the White Mountains, listening to live music, and working out in the middle of the day. I find that it’s in the new space of being out of the ordinary that I feel energized. I begin to be more present. I can see the world a little bit     . . . read more

The Requirements of a Life in Transition

Every time my toddler learns something new, like amazingly-awesome new, she can’t sleep very well. She rolls around for an hour in her crib before falling asleep or gets up in the night and just looks around, sometimes for hours. It happened when she learned to crawl, walk, walk outside, say words, form sentences, talk in paragraphs, and use the potty. Small children provide clues into basic human nature. What my daughter is showing is that life transitions, these big changes, have an impact. They take work and energy to process. We need time and space to make the shift. Adults don’t have to make as many changes as kids. We also don’t seem to be as graceful at growing. Therefore, we may struggle even more under big life changes. It’s easy to forget that even positive changes are stressful.     . . . read more

Freedom

Freedom is NOT: pushing down real feelings a stubborn refusal to talk about what’s really going on looking to appearances and perfection to give you worth striving for accomplishment to give your life meaning expecting so much of others that they can’t possibly fulfill your needs pretending things are easy and fine trying with everything you do to show you are deserving seeing every attempt that falls short as a failure                 Freedom IS: learning to tolerate the full range of human emotion opening up to cherished loved ones in times of joy and in need believing in the inherent worth of each person (including yourself) using appearances as self expression connecting with others, yourself, and nature to give your life meaning following your passions to fulfill your needs being real about what’s     . . . read more

Practice Makes…Better

Note from Hannah: This is a guest post by Emily Caswell as part of the popular New Perspectives Series featured on this blog. The goal of this series is to shed new light on mental health, wellness, and just being a human being. For more posts in the series, click here. “Have you practiced your flute?” is a common question in our house. My son, finishing up the second year with his instrument, always says yes. He’s developed a great habit of practicing every day, something I wanted for him (and for his sister) from the time they were little. I know, that sounds like a strangely specific thing to wish for your children: “Please make them healthy, happy people who practice.” But there are reasons for my wish and those reasons have nothing to do with that other “P”     . . . read more

Emotions and the Binge- How I Learned to Sit With Discomfort

Note from Hannah: This is the latest installment from the New Perspectives Series. This post was contributed by Dawn Clancy (and do yourself a favor and check out her blog and radio show, Growing Up Chaotic). When I set out to write this article, I pictured myself creating it from a peaceful and reflective place. With a mug of coffee to my right, and my computer snug in my lap, my fingers would breeze across the keyboard, breathing life into the ideas gently fluttering in and out of my consciousness. However, where I find myself at this very moment, makes even the roughest of seas on the show Deadliest Catch look like water in my bathtub. I am in the midst of an emotional shakedown and sitting with discomfort has never been a strength of mine. Whenever I feel anything,     . . . read more