Leigh Rubin is a funny man. He says it all in a one-flash image. For those of you suffering from “I’m-taking-myself-my-job-my-world-too seriously,” this calendar is for you.

Give yourself the gift of laughter framed in 365 days of knee-slapping jocularity.

Aren’t convinced? His zany video (I think it’s his son) will convince you. It’s all about prioritization ~ a true power of slow principle!

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Black Friday Gift Suggestions

November 26, 2010

Have you lifted the turkey fog enough to put the keys in the ignition to head to the mall for your annual post-Thanksgiving trek to your local consumer mecca?

Either way I have a few slow gift ideas you might appreciate.

As I have mentioned elsewhere, reading for just six minutes a day can lower your stress levels by 68%. So it is only natural that I suggest a few good reference guides from my own library.

Like wine? Then check out Good, Better, Best Wines: A Non-Nonsense Guide to Popular Wines by Carolyn Evans Hammond. It gives really sound advice beyond the urban myths that corked wine is somehow better (according to Carolyn, they aren’t necessarily). If you’ve ever found yourself stunned by the selection at the supermarket, this handy pocket-sized guide is a great tool to be sure you have the right vino for every occasion.

Concerned about weight gain over the holidays? Grab a copy of Nutrition At Your Fingertips. It offers common sense advice about how to better balance your food intake for your lifestyle. The ‘at your fingertips’ part is really helpful as you can flip to the section that pertains to you. For instance, if you have a question about sugars, you can flip to that section immediately. Have no idea where to buy good, safe food? Nutritionist author Elisa Zied has you covered.

And finally, my power of slow favorite has to be Puzzle Baron’s Logic Puzzles.  As a kid, I used to hate logic puzzles. I preferred climbing, dancing on my toes or riding my horse. But as I have gotten older, I appreciate the brain capacity required to dissect the logic of these puzzles. A lot of it trains your deductive reasoning, which is great fun and can help pass the long winter days outside! And after you’ve finished the brain teasers in this book, you can go to the accompanying Web site for even more!

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Happy Thanksgiving, my Gratitude Friends!

A special treat from the Goo Goo Dolls brought to you by The Power of Slow.

May all your holiday wishes come true! And remember here is gone the moment you utter it.

Peace!

Global Info overload study reveals 26% of Chinese professionals say their co. offers email free days/times versus only 6% in US http://ow.ly/3e9sD

Remains of the Day

November 23, 2010

The Internet is a place of great complexity. You can be as close to someone in Shanghai via Skype as your partner in the next room. You can interact with someone via Email and have a sense of familiarity without ever hearing the person’s voice. You feel united with all of humanity without touching a soul.

I would argue that the very act of connection is touching our souls more than we think.

This morning I received the saddest news. The editor of several trade publications for which we have offered our PR client’s stories passed away. Did I know that he had cancer? No. Did I know that his email to me on October 21 would be our last ‘conversation’? Never.

It makes me sad that he is gone. I never really knew him. And perhaps it wasn’t meant to be that we would ever get to know one another beyond the “Great story. It will run next week” chat. But I sense a loss that is deep and surprising. And it causes me to reconsider how much we really ‘know’ about each other.

While I may be on the up and up about certain aspects of my friends’ and family’s lives via Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, I don’t really know how they are doing. Phone calls and Skype chats bring us closer, but nothing replaces the touch of a hand, a full-body hug and a smile. While we may be informed about certain things, the Internet lends us a false sense of security and intimacy.

Remember AT&T’s slogan, “Reach out and touch someone?” Perhaps it is time for us to do that in person. So go ahead and reach out, touch someone’s soul. If you can’t in person, give them a call, then listen ~ really listen to what the person is saying. You never know if it might be the last time.

What will you do with the remains of your day?

 

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Nature at its hand-made pace

November 22, 2010

With weather like this, all I want to do is graze.

It’s hard to motivate yourself when the daylight hours span 9:30 am to about 3:15 pm. I’m not kidding. It’s getting dark by tea time in Germany now.

 

As captured from Naturally Peaceful

The lack of sunlight elicits a primal response in my body. It says “Hunker down. Do puzzles. Lay low.” My appetite rises as I yearn for more chocolate than I do all year.

What to do?

Go with it.

Instead of beating yourself up, listen to what your body is telling you. Do you need more calories when the light grows dim by mid-afternoon? Honor that.

You can offset it with more indoor activity (keeping the floor clean with two children and four pet rodents that spend a GREAT DEAL OF TIME INDOORS is physically challenging enough!).

I feel like a small  animal, hamstering away goodies to keep my body fed. If I didn’t, the kids would inhale my treats in one day. So little by little, I feed from the trough of delight. A little bon-bon here, a cup of ginger tea there.

Recently, in an interview on Ageless Sages with Natalie Tucker Miller, I commented how nature goes at its own hand-made pace. You don’t see fall rushing through its season, do you? The same goes for animals. They go at their innate pace (which varies, depending on the season).

So for now I’ll be content to hunker down. With a puzzle. And some chocolate for grazing away the winter at a slightly slower crawl…

 

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Holiday gifts are often as decadent as the parties at which they are given. Occasions for overindulging are frequent for the last weeks of the year, just as physical activity levels decline thanks to shorter, colder days.  Hey, I’m all for munching on a piece of chocolate cake. My motto? Moderation  in all things, including moderation!

Giving the gift of good health is a neat idea.  The folks at ActionForHealthyKids.org sent me some interesting tips I’d like to share because they really apply to all ages.

“The toys and games that kids receive as gifts often encourage sedentary behavior,” says Rob Bisceglie, Executive Director of Action for Healthy Kids.  “Adults can teach and model healthy habits by giving presents that encourage physical activity.”

My son, for instance, insists that we play ball every morning and afternoon. It’s as if the moment he’s eaten something, he’s ready to burn it off. Not a bad idea!

Action for Healthy Kids suggests these easy ideas for giving the gift of health this holiday season:

•        Fresh produce.  Find bountiful baskets at a local grocery store, send a bushel from an online citrus grower, or join an online “Fruit or Veggie of the Month” club. Remember to eat what’s in season because, quite frankly, it tastes better!

•        Join a gym.  Give membership to an athletic club or the YMCA. If you can’t afford a gym membership, join a walking group with friends. Start slowly, walking ten minutes, then fifteen and increase it until you’ve hit a comfortable amount of time.

•        Find a fun fitness class.  Gift certificates are available for gymnastics, yoga, aerobics, rock climbing, tae kwon doe, dance lessons and dozens of other active endeavors. I personally love my gym because they’ve recently renovated their spa area. There is nothing like dreaming of a nice steam room visit on a cold winter’s day!

•        Make a healthy toolbox, not an Xbox!  Give toys that can be used in the basement or garage during inclement weather.  Include balls, jump ropes, hula hoops, bubbles, and chalk for hopscotch.

•        Embrace the cold.  Snow toys, skis, sleds, and skates make cold weather fun! Be sure to wear the right clothing so no one freezes. As my father-in-law likes to say, “There’s no such thing as bad weather; just bad clothing prep!”

•        Plan a family adventure.   Try hiking, biking, rock climbing, whitewater rafting, or a walking trek.

•        Make the most of screen time.  Kids of all ages love motion-controlled video games, music video dance games, and exercise DVDs.

•        Don’t forget the favorites.  Bikes, tricycles, pogo sticks, roller or in-line skates, and scooters have always kept kids moving!

“A fresh, health-driven perspective can make the holiday season an opportunity for children and adults alike to start practicing healthier habits,” says Bisceglie.  “Why wait for the New Year?”

 

About Action for Healthy Kids

Action for Healthy Kids (www.ActionforHealthyKids.org) is the nation’s leading nonprofit and volunteer network fighting childhood obesity and undernourishment by helping schools become healthier places and our kids learn to eat right and be active every day.  A collaboration of more than 67 organizations, corporations and government agencies supports grassroots efforts by thousands of volunteers nationwide.  In 2009 Action for Healthy Kids reached nearly 4 million children in 8,000 schools.

 

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