Wednesday, April 16th, 2014 Focus: The more I acknowledge and embrace my fears, the less they affect my life.

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The road to releasing your fears is to first acknowledge that they are there. “A fear named is a fear tamed” describes what happens when you begin to face fear. If you can name it and understand its effect on you, it becomes manageable rather than wild and unwieldy.

Begin by taking a huge piece of paper and writing down every fear you have. Big ones. Little ones. Everything. Even some that you are not sure of but which you might have. Be specific. Keep writing until you are exhausted and then find some more. As soon as you can see them listed on paper, they will begin to lose some of their hold on you.

Once you have listed your fears, take one and examine it. As you examine each fear, ask yourself if it is a fear that serves and supports you. For example, if you are afraid that you will get out of shape if you don’t exercise, then this fear-being has some value in your life. You can thank it for its presence but ask that it doesn’t judge you so harshly on those days you don’t exercise. Your fears need your love. The more you acknowledge and embrace them, the less they affect your life.

Excerpted from the article:
Facing Your Fears: Taming Them & Recognizing the Good Ones
by Denise Linn.

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RECOMMENDED BOOK OF THE DAY

Secrets & Mysteries
by Denise Linn.

Secrets and Mysteries will give you a profound understanding of what it means to be a woman. Full of passion, mysticism, and practical information, it will tap the source of your power at the depths of your soul. Through her own extraordinary life experience and her knowledge of native cultures around the world, Denise Linn reveals how you can activate ancient wisdom to become the magnificent embodiment of strength and grace.

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Tuesday, April 15th, 2014 Focus: Each change makes the next one easier.

Changing your lifestyle takes effort, but it isn’t impossible. Lots of people have done it — people with bigger problems and fewer resources than you.

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There’s an old saying: How you do one thing is how you do everything. I would add to that: If you change how you do one thing, you change how you do everything. Each change makes the next one easier. Noble projects have a positive ripple effect in your life and in the lives of those around you.

Sometimes my daughter looks up from doing her homework and complains, “Momma, it’s so hard.” I tell her, “You can do hard.” My response comes from author Bo Lozoff, director and cofounder of the Human Kindness Foundation and its award-winning Prison Ashram Project. “Hard” isn’t the enemy. It feels good to complete something hard. “Hard” doesn’t have to stop her — or you.

Excerpted from the article:
How to Manage Stress: One Change at a Time
by Dawn Groves.

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Monday, April 14th, 2014 Focus: I choose to be the person I want to be.

Right Brain
Depression is a part of a whole life, not something one can separate out and label as strictly chemical, biological, or biographical. In fact, when you experience an onset of depression your life is talking to you. Some part of you is sending out an SOS: “Something is not working here!”

If you are feeling overwhelmed or stuck in a long bout of depression, you can’t afford to keep looking out into the world in the same way. Some views you hold of the world will need to change. So even in the situation where medications help, be mindful to take enough to help but not so much as to kill the messenger before you can hear and understand the message of your depression.

“We get depressed for not being the person we want to be. We get depressed when we think we have not been able to achieve the things that we want to achieve in life.” — Traleg Kyabgon, “Depression’s Truth”

Excerpted from the article:
Antidotes to Depression: Stop, Look, Listen
by Julie Tallard Johnson.

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RECOMMENDED BOOK OF THE DAY

The Zero Point Agreement: How to Be Who You Already Are
by Julie Tallard Johnson.

Revealing how we can tap in to the creative, creational power that lies within and around each of us, Julie offers a spiritual technology for self-illumination, creative restructuring of your life, and manifestation of your life’s purpose. Providing 11 core principles for the Zero Point Agreement as well as thought exercises, meditations, and journaling practices, Julie shows how to break free from negative habitual states, liberate yourself from your attachment to the behaviors of others, take full responsibility for motivation and effort, express gratitude, focus your intention, and learn to co-create with the natural world. She also explores how to transform repressed material and how to apply the Zero Point Agreement to heal both personal and global relationships.

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Sunday, April 13th, 2014 Focus: I make a conscious choice to use my free time to do things that I truly enjoy.

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Lebish and Grinnell CD
“A Long Time Comin”

http://www.lebishgrinnellmusic.com
It’s necessary to make time for the things you love. It’s good to dance, laugh, or create art — activities like these feed your soul and can be very soothing and relaxing. Notice what makes you happy and what fills you full of energy.

Running each morning just for the joy of it, watching a funny movie with a friend, tending the garden and watching things grow, petting your dog each morning when you wake up . . . when you take any kind of concrete action that is positive for you, it will make you feel better and fill you with light.

When I became more aware, I paid attention to what was uplifting to me and what was draining. I now choose to go to places and be with individuals who make me feel good. I also made a conscious choice to use my free time to do things that I truly enjoy.

Excerpted from the article:
Discovering What Works for You (and what doesn’t)
by Shari Arison.

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RECOMMENDED BOOK OF THE DAY

Activate Your Goodness: Transforming the World Through Doing Good
by Shari Arison.

Activate Your Goodness is a practical guide for doing good for yourself and others, offering you inspiration for immediate improvement of your life and the lives of those around you. New York Times best-selling author Shari Arison, visionary businesswoman and philanthropist, is candid about her own personal stories and also provides examples from others who have made a difference by thinking, speaking, and doing good.

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Saturday, April 12th, 2014 Focus: I choose to slow down! Enjoy. Let the world pass me by just a few minutes more.

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If we could choose one word that would define the lives of modern humans, it would have to be hectic. When, in recorded history, have we been so predisposed to incessant activity? We truly are driving ourselves insane.

Sixty or seventy years is not enough time for our nerves and bones and brains to adapt to the increased activity and stress that modern living has thrust upon us. Our body/minds haven’t been prepared for the onslaught of 21st-century living. They were made for a more peaceful, contemplative existence.

That contemplative nature born of our earliest forefathers is with us still, genetically coded in our every cell, patiently waiting to be rediscovered. It is an ever-present but frail voice, straining against the ever-escalating rumble of modern madness. If we take a moment to listen, we can hear it quietly pleading, “Slow down! Enjoy. Let the world pass you by just a few minutes more.”

Excerpted from the article:
How to Be Active & Peaceful at the Same Time
by Dr. Frank J. Kinslow.

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RECOMMENDED BOOK OF THE DAY

The Secret of Quantum Living
by Frank J Kinslow.

Within the pages of this powerful book, you will learn Dr. Kinslow’s process of Quantum Entrainment® (QE) and discover how to enrich and enliven all areas of your life. It doesn’t require previous training, and it’s so simple that a child can do it. The Secret of Quantum Living is fun to read and exciting to apply. You’ll begin seeing results from your very first session. Give it a try . . . you’ll be surprised how quickly the process works for you!

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April 11, 2014 – Bill White – A GRIEVING PARENT ON PARITY


Parents who have lost children to addiction are speaking publicly in unprecedented numbers. Their stories provide a biting critique of addiction treatment as a system of care–and suggestions that addiction treatment has yet to operate as a “system of care”. They also provide painful accounts of how fiscal gatekeepers operate to restrict access to care and prevent continuity of care at times that such access and continuity are most critical. On April 4, 2014, Bill Williams testified before the Bi-partisan Congressional Alcohol, Treatment and Recovery Caucus co-chaired by Representative Tim Ryan (D-Ohio) and Representative John Fleming (R-Louisiana). Bill shared the experiences he and his wife Margot encountered in their unrelenting efforts to get needed help for their son, William. Bill’s eloquent testimony is offered here without further commentary.

Bill Williams
In early December of 2012 our son, William, entered Columbia University’s College of Physicians and Surgeons at the age of 24. His arrival there was off the beaten track, beginning with visits to a psychotherapist. Over the next two years stops on the way included an addiction psychiatrist, out-patient treatment, treatment with Suboxone, in-patient detox, in-patient treatment, out-patient treatment, out-patient detox, treatment with Vivitrol, more out-patient treatment, another in-patient treatment, more out-patient treatment, a revolving door of well over a dozen trips to and from the emergency rooms of at least four different hospitals, an attempt to work with another addiction psychiatrist, Alcoholics Anonymous, Narcotics Anonymous, and a home life fraught with tension and despair, sometimes hopeful during intermittent periods of sobriety, and always filled with the apprehension of misfortune.
His credentials for Columbia were unorthodox, “acute and chronic substance abuse,” which caused “complications of acute heroin intoxication”. William was admitted, not as a medical student, but as an anatomical donation. A cadaver. His credentials came from his death certificate, not any academic transcript.
As a result of his acute intoxication, when his heart stopped beating for too long, when he was hospitalized for six weeks until it became clear that William had withered to a vegetative state, we made the decision to remove him from life support and have him become an organ donor. Organ donation for someone in a vegetative state requires an expedient demise. William did not expire within the necessary one-hour time frame, though his mother, sister and I were with him in the operating room, telling him he could let go. Rather, he lasted another 21 hours before drawing his last breath in our arms.
Determined that his death not be in vain, his mother, sister and I made the following pledge: “We promise to do everything in our power to educate and inform people about drug abuse and its prevention, to provide ever more enlightened treatment for addicts, to help make treatment options for addicts more readily available, and to remove the stain of shame surrounding this disease.” A very first step to honor that pledge was the anatomical donation of William’s body. We continue to honor that pledge by appearing before you today.
Shortly after we were invited to appear at this briefing, we received another invitation. William’s contribution at Columbia has reached an end. This coming Wednesday his family, including his seven week old niece who will only know him by story and photographs, has been invited to a ceremony at Columbia honoring those whose bodies helped train and educate this year’s class of medical students. We will meet and hear from these medical students, their professors and other families who have donated kin. We will have an opportunity to speak to them. What we say to them will differ little from what we say to you today, which is to say that ignorance about substance use disorder remains the order of the day. It is the plague of our time. Anything we say that is repetition bears repetition until it manifests itself as policy change and practice of substance and consequence.
Parity is about more than receiving equal health care insurance for substance use disorder and mental health issues.
Parity means an individual can say, “I have a substance use disorder,” without discrimination, judgment or censure. Parity is when family members can stand beside the afflicted and say, “…and we are all getting counseling and support to aid in our loved one’s recovery.”
Parity means that substance use disorder is recognized by laymen and professionals alike as a brain disease.
Parity means that funding for research for substance use disorder is on the same level as that for heart disease, cancer, or diabetes.
Parity means that people with substance abuse disorder are treated with the same compassion and understanding, treated with the same urgency, accorded the same dignity, as any other patient with any other medical or surgical need.
Parity is when physicians, not health insurers practice addiction medicine, when physicians, not actuaries determine the best course of treatment.
Parity is when physicians are trained to recognize and treat substance use disorder in medical school with the same rigor given to any other disease.
Parity will be when physicians in any specialty can recognize, treat, or refer patients to a proper source of treatment.
Parity will be when there are sufficient numbers of physicians board certified in addiction medicine.
Parity will become practice when more than a mere 10% of the 23 million plus Americans who suffer from substance abuse disorder are properly diagnosed and treated.
Parity will come about when rehabilitation facilities have medical doctors on staff, all the time.
Parity is when physicians, politicians, school principals, police, and parents all realize that not only are they responsible for helping to treat this disease, but also that they and their families are as susceptible as anyone else to being afflicted by the disease.
Parity will arrive when we stop pretending will power is a cure for a neurological problem. Will power needs to be exercised, not by the afflicted, but by policy makers who can help change the course of this epidemic.
We are, indeed, in the midst of an epidemic. Data, like much else in the treatment of substance use disorder, is slow to arrive. However, we do know that, overall, overdose deaths from pills and heroin now exceed automobile deaths in this country. Every day, 105 people die of drug and alcohol overdoses in this country. While the latest data is from 2010, it is most likely that the number of drug deaths in 2014 exceeds the number of deaths at the height of the AIDS epidemic.
William’s cause of death could have been listed as “Institutional Indifference”. Failed insurance, clumsy coordination between health care providers, and antiquated treatment practices doomed him.
In another time, in a better era, William might have entered the College of Physicians and Surgeons, not as a cadaver, but as a gifted and talented young man, prepared to serve others.
We ask you as a body to summon the will power to make these possibilities realities.
We WILL prevail.
Thank you.
For additional writings from Bill Williams, click here.
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Friday, April 11th, 2014 Focus: I do my part in creating a new culture of collaboration, caring, and concern for the common good.

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Theologian Thomas Berry has said that each era has its own Great Work, and that ours is saving the planet.

But of course, we can’t save the planet unless we save its people as well. All the problems are related, and all spring from an unawareness that we are all one, all part of the web of life.

Only if we realize this — and act on it — will we be able to create a new culture of collaboration, caring, and concern for the common good.

Excerpted from the article:
The Remaking of a Counterculture: The Barefoot Teacher
by Cecile Andrews.

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RECOMMENDED BOOK OF THE DAY

Living Room Revolution: A Handbook for Conversation, Community and the Common Good — by Cecile Andrews.

The heart of happiness is joining with others in good talk and laughter. Living Room Revolution provides a practical toolkit of concrete strategies to facilitate personal and social change by bringing people together in community and conversation. The regeneration of social ties and the sense of caring and purpose that comes from creating community drive this essential transformation. Each person can make a difference, and it can all start in your own living room!

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