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The Perfect Equation for a Life Lesson

Life Lesson: Learn Something New + Overcome Fear Equals Inner Satisfaction

When our garage roof needed repair my three children and I took on the task of reroofing it. Why you ask? You can bet so did my children. My response to my 15, 13 and 10-year-old kids was that their education costs took a big chunk of the budget. As a single parent, it was exciting to save money on something I thought we could do. How difficult could reroofing be? Lay one shingle down, then another.

As "Ellie-from-the-deli" making $10 an hour and teaching fourteen workout classes a week, I was doing all I could to meet our financial obligations. So I had my motivation. Reroofing the garage seemed like a simple enough task except for the fact that I was afraid of heights. No way would I have attempted my house roof because of the sharp incline plus I'd heard of people breaking body parts after falling.

This was the perfect equation for a life lesson: learn something new + overcome a fear = inner satisfaction.

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University of Minnesota Occupational Therapy Research Study

The University of Minnesota Occupational Therapy Department will be conducting Effects of Meditative Movements for Persons with Chronic Health Conditions research study this summer.

Chronic diseases and conditions—such as heart disease, stroke, cancer, diabetes, obesity, and arthritis—are among the most common, costly, and preventable of all health problems.

The prevention and management of chronic health conditions is a major challenge for the current health care system. There is growing evidence that complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) have beneficial effects for managing the many symptoms of chronic health conditions. Use of CAM to improve health and well-being has increased over the years (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2007). American adults are most likely to use CAM for problems such as stress, fatigue, and pain.

The purpose of this study is to explore the effects of Meditative Movements on blood pressure, anxiety, depression, fatigue, and quality of life for persons with chronic health conditions.

Upon Institutional Review Board approval, the study will run from June to Sept, 2016. We will keep you apprised of the results so you can keep on learning the benefits of practicing Meditative Movements.

Moving Outside Your Comfie Zone

Person Riding Big Bike

Are your dreams and goals causing you to learn something new? Are you moving or rather being pushed outside your comfie zone? If your answer is yes, you may find practicing the "I Am Learning Meditative Movement" helpful. Why? Because it reminds you that learning is not linear. Making mistakes and screwing up is usually part of the process. Many people use this Meditative Movement to soothe their frustration and irritation emotions. As adults, we can give ourselves the space and time we need to master a skill. We can affirm that we are still learning.

Hence, practicing the "I Am Learning Meditative Movement" can keep you moving towards your goal. Remember you can practice anywhere, at home, office, or waiting for the bus.

  1. Seated or standing, inhale a deep breath.
  2. Exhale and as you tap your non-dominant foot forward say "I'm."
  3. Move the foot back to its original position.
  4. Inhale another deep breath.
  5. Exhale as you tap your other foot forward say "learning. "
  6. Move the foot back to original position.

The "I'm Learning Meditative Movement" is also available in the Power of Positive Aerobics DVD.

Here is an example of how Paula uses the movements during her workday. "I was fearful of others' anger. Doing the 'I Feel Safe Meditative Movement' allowed me to be in the presence of other people's anger - enabling me to work with angry outbursts of homeless people. When I felt I couldn't possibly do more training as an advocate, I did the 'I Can Meditative Movement.' Often before going into the advocacy room, I would need to do the 'I Can Meditative Movement' again followed by the 'I Release Meditative Movement.' Doing these movements relaxed me. The 'I Choose Meditative Movement' allows me to own my actions and my thoughts."

Continuing Education Classes

Another way to engage in the learning process is to sign up for a Continuing Education course. Class categories at FGCU are:

Accounting and Finance


Computer Applications

Design and Composition

Healthcare and Medical

Language and Arts

Law and Legal

Personal Development

Teaching and Education


Writing and Publishing

Travel Opportunities

This is a great opportunity to expand your knowledge and meet new people. If you are in the Florida Southwest area, you could attend the Self-Care for Busy Professionals: Be Healthy and Happpy Class that I will be teaching the end of April at four different locations. This offering is through Florida Gulf Coast University Professional Development Programs.

Book Learning

Book learning is the knowledge gained from reading books. For me reading offers much enjoyment and fun. My favorite book is always the one I'm currently reading. Here is my brief book report of Spontaneous Fulfillment of Desire by Deepak Chopra.

Deepak's passion for life fills the book. His explanation of how our internal and Spontaneous Fulfillment of Desire by Deepak Chopra book coverexternal world work together brought clarity to me because he gives simple examples to help illustrate his concepts. If you read the book in a scientific mindset, you will enjoy his style of writing more.

Here is my summary of the three levels of existence. First level is our physical, material and visible universe and what we can experience with our five senses, known as the real world. Everything is born and dies and is therefore impermanent.

The second level is the quantum domain which consists of information and energy. Thoughts fit into this category. Everything in the visible universe is a manifestation of the quantum domain.

The third level is comprised of intelligence or consciousness. We need to surrender to uncertainty, while appreciating its intricate beauty. This means we never really know what direction life will take, what the mind of God truly is or understand the how, where and when of anything, even something as simple as water boiling.

While this seems unsettling, I also relax knowing that all is well. He confirms that practices like meditation and Meditative Movements are simple ways to align our thoughts with consciousness.

What book could bring you joy?

Affirm Yourself, Move Your Body, Change Your Life