Sunday, February 26, 2006

Positive Psychology - interesting article

I am constantly amazed at the range of information on the internet. Every day I find yet more intersting websites, so thought it was about time I shared some of them!

Today I have been looking at which is an opnline magazine for psychotherapists. There was a feature article by Richard Handler, entitled 'Can a course in positive psychology change your life?' on the study of positive psychology as promoted by Martin Seligman (author of Authentic Happiness, and Fox Leadership Professor of Psychology at the University of Pennsylvania). Handler writes about Dr Seligman's background and extensive research, and also the 20 week telecourse he did on this subject - which contains some useful, practical ideas on how to promote happiness.

An interesting read!

Martin Selgman's website is also worth a visit - There is a great online survey you can take which gives you a report on your signature strengths, as well as other fascinating material.

Hope you find these sites of interest.

Enjoying every mouthful - an article by Aboodi Shabi

I really enjoy the articles that Aboodi writes; they are always thought provoking - so here is a extract from his recent newsletter.

Enjoying every mouthful by Aboodi Shabi

I met up yesterday for a walk and lunch with a friend of mine. She was telling me about her new diet, working with a book by the hypnotist Paul McKenna. Now, I'm not a big fan of hypnotism, and NLP, but what she said was simple and clear.

According to her, the "diet" is really simple, with just three rules:- only eat when you're hungry - enjoy every mouthful- stop eating when you are full.

Sound advice, to be sure, but what really stood out for me was the second one - enjoy every mouthful. As we talked, I realised how wise that advice was, and how difficult it is for me to follow it. I tend to eat quickly, and, if I eat alone, then I usually do something else while eating, usually, doing e-mails, or reading or watching television.

So, far from enjoying every mouthful, I often find that I have hardly even noticed what I've been eating. Given that I love food, and love cooking, that seems rather sad, doesn't it - all that time and effort in preparation, only to wolf something down, and hardly even notice it.

And then I started to think about the other situations that this could apply to. I have an iPod which I listen to in the car, and two things happen - either I hardly notice which song I am listening to after the first few bars, or I skip through tracks quickly, with little satisfaction or enjoyment, even though you'd think I liked all of the songs on there, given that I put them there!

How many things in life could this apply to? Possibly everything we do - how many breaths do we savour? How many trees and birds do we notice when we go out walking? How much less would be consume and buy if we took the time to savour and enjoy our experiences, rather than hurrying through them in order to get to the next one?

And, even as I write this, I'm thinking about the next thing I need to do, and wondering how many mouthfuls of my lunch I will notice, never mind enjoy! While Paul McKenna's advice might sound simple, the practice of it is as difficult as the practice of meditation.

So, if this resonates, then here's something to practice (I'm certainly going to!) - see how many mouthfuls you can enjoy this week - see how many you can even notice, how many moments you can savour. Try it in the spirit of lightness, rather than as something you have to do or get right - this isn't just another thing to consume, but something to engage with as a practice.

"May you live all the days of your life" - Jonathon Swift

"There is more to life than increasing its speed." - Gandhi

(C) Aboodi Shabi 2006"stirring the soul" is the regular e-mail newsletter from Aboodi Shabi, professional coach, speaker and writer.
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Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Happy Valentine's Day

“May this Valentine's Day be filled with love, understanding, and contentment as you journey through life with those you hold dear” ~ Darly Henerson

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Byron Katie on reality

“Arguing with reality is like trying to teach a cat to bark - hopeless.” ~ Byron Katie