Some years ago, I had the extreme pleasure of reconnecting with my Aunt Gerta and Cousin Sandy after 55 years. Yes, I said 55 years; that's how long since we had last seen one another.
Sandy had found me through Ancestry.com. It was very fortunate as I had been lamenting the fact that I didn't feel like I was part of a family. I was missing a connection to my Father's side of the family. Sandy called me at the exact moment I needed to, and I was more than thrilled. When we were young girls, Sandy and I spent a couple of weeks together each summer at our Grandmother's home in San Francisco. I always looked forward to these visits because Sandy was such a sweet girl, and we got along so well. Those memories are some of the best I can remember.
Aunt Gerta was such a beautiful person, both physically and mentally. I felt such a strong connection to her and remembered how much I had always admired her. She began dancing when she was 13 and continued dancing until a hip replacement in her 80s finally stopped the dance. Well, it stopped the physical part of the dance, but she still choreographed for others. She was a delight to be with and quite amazing. She left us on December 30, 2013, at a youthful 91 years.
Cousin Sandy, three weeks younger than I, is also a beauty, and I felt the same sense of kinship and love I felt with her so long ago when we were girls playing together. She reads a lot and seems to have read some of the same books I have. There were other similarities, and I felt so comfortable talking to her...like the sister I never had. I was an only child, so Sandy was, and is, very important to me.
Sandy's 81st Birthday is on October 24th, and I am dedicating this Love-Letter to her.
I'm Yawning! Am I Bored?
According to Andrew Newberg, MD, a leading Neuroscientist and co-author with Mark Robert Waldman of" How God Changes Your Brain: Breakthrough Findings From a Leading Neuroscientist", the fifth best way to exercise your brain is by yawning. Yes, he said "yawning" and goes on to say it is one of the best-kept secrets in neuroscience.
So, just what does yawning do for you? For many years performers have used yawning as a way to relax the throat and relieve tension before a performance. Oh, you say, but I'm not a performer, so what will it do for me besides making people annoyed? Well, it seems yawning "evokes a unique neural activity" in areas of our brain that are "directly involved in generating social awareness and creating feelings of empathy."
So what, you say. Let's pretend you're driving down the freeway, and the other drivers (not you, of course) are driving badly, and you begin to feel a certain amount of anger. Yawn six or seven times to get the yawn going, and then continue on to ten or twelve yawns. You will feel the stress and tension leave your body. It really helps! James and I use this technique, and it never fails to work.
I also use it when I awaken in the middle of the night and have trouble getting back to sleep. Be sure you yawn ten to twelve times. At first, it may seem difficult or even silly, but once you get six or seven yawns out, it becomes almost irresistible. Really great yawns can even get your eyes watering!
Newberg and Waldman give these 12 essential reasons to yawn:
1. Stimulates alertness and concentration
2. Optimizes brain activity and metabolism
3. Improves cognitive function
4. Increases memory recall
5. Enhances consciousness and introspection
6. Lowers stress
7. Relaxes every part of your body
8. Improves voluntary muscle control
9. Enhances athletic skills
10. Fine-tunes your sense of time
11. Increases empathy and social awareness
12. Enhances pleasure and sensuality
So, if you want to feel "utterly present, incredibly relaxed, and highly alert," start yawning like there's no tomorrow!
What are some situations where you could use yawning?
Beliefs about aging can be central to how you experience it, so finish these sentences to see where your limiting beliefs are hiding:
Complete the following phrases:
- Older people are
- Getting older makes people
- I'd stay youthful if
- My parents thought older people were
- Getting older will cause
- Aging equals
- If I were old, I'd
- If I could stay young forever
- I am afraid when I get older, I'll
- Being old is not
- To stay youthful, I'd need to
- I think aging
- If I weren't too old, I'd
- People think growing older
I know these will stir things up; that's what I'm here for! Changing limiting beliefs is what I do for fun.
OK - I know it's October already, but this is still relevant!
HELLO SEPTEMBER, THE SEASON OF LETTING GO
And so begins the season of letting go,
when Mother Nature shows us all,
how it's done.
shake it off,
give way for the new.
Create space for new thoughts, new ideas,
new adventures and new connections,
by shedding the dead weight you've been carrying around,
for so long.
And whilst you are there, being reborn and renewed,
let go of old anxieties too.
Let go of any doubts, fears or beliefs which no longer serve you well.
Release bitterness or past hurts which feast on your beauty.
Don't fear the nakedness as your leaves slip away.
Mother Nature doesn't,
watch and learn.
- Donna Ashworth
Autumn, from 'Wild Hope' 🍂
If you know any women who would benefit from reading this, please forward it to them. And if you (or they) want to get my 10 Tips For Powerful Aging, click on this link, http://bit.ly/3XeX6IK
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Fellow Goddesses! Get clear and make a plan for aging powerfully, passionately, and purposefully. You can do it, and I'll guide you in a fun and fulfilling way.
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