365 Days to a Better You – Day 52 – Laughter is the Best Medicine

Laugh more. It’s good for you!

Thought of the Day
At the height of laughter, the universe is flung into a kaleidoscope of new possibilities.

~ Jean Houston

Laugh, damn it, laugh! You’ve heard the saying that laughter is the best medicine. Think about it. When do you feel better than when you laugh?

Laughter is one of the few human experiences that can – at least for the moment – make us forget and transcend any problem. In the moment of laughter, sadness, depression, stress, and worry are reduced to zero. It stands to reason that the more we laugh the less we experience these negative feelings and emotions and, as we have talked about on this blog, positive vibrations are the basis for successful, happy action in the world.

Scientific research shows that laughter has an array of health benefits from stress reduction to a reduced risk of heart attack.

Laughter is a readily accessible transformational experience.  It requires no practice or years of training. It’s available any moment and anywhere you choose. By finding the funny side of life, you not only raise your vibration, you raise the world’s because laughter is contagious. By spreading it, you’re spreading health and well-being to the people around you.

You might remember this viral video from about 10 years ago. It still makes me laugh and that’s good for me, good for you, and good for us.

Ray

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365 Days to a Better You – Day 51

Do one thing at a time.

We live in a world that extolls multitasking as a virtue. “Yes,” you tell your boss, “I can handle five projects at once. No problem.”

The bottom line is we don’t multitask well. You doubt it? Here’s a cool little test from Psychology Today. It’s a practical test that demonstrates how multitasking actually slows you down and increases errors.

How many times a day do you say or hear someone else say, “I have SO much to do.” We live in a world of constant doing and we must be productive, productive, productive (yes, I’m clapping as I say productive) all day every day or we feel somehow defective.

The reasons multitasking is ineffective, despite its cultural popularity, are readily apparent. Consider this. Let’s say you have taken a job to dig ten holes that are each ten inches deep. Imagine watching yourself from above as you move from hole to hole, digging one shovel-full and then moving to the next hole.

You spend more time going between holes than you do digging because you can’t literally dig ten holes at once. The same is true when you multitask. You may think you’re doing two things at once, but in reality your brain is quickly moving back and forth from one task to the other. Neither task gets your full attention or your deeper insight. All tasks suffer.

Here’s a nice video that details this problem.

So, you see multitasking doesn’t save time, impairs quality, and, frankly, takes the joy out of doing each task. You wind up with an unfulfilling, fragmented day and life.

The next time your boss asks, “Can you handle five projects?”

Politely reply, “I can do five projects simultaneously and they’ll be mediocre or I can do one at a time excellently.”

Power hack: Do one task at a time. Give it your all and then move onto the next task. Three simultaneous tasks against one you isn’t a fair fight. Let’s stop pretending that it is.

Ray\

More reading:

365 Days to a Better You – Day 50

The most important decision we make is whether we believe the universe is friendly or hostile.

Albert Einstein said that and he expanded on this comment with the following commentary.

For if we decide that the universe is an unfriendly place, then we will use our technology, our scientific discoveries and our natural resources to achieve safety and power by creating bigger walls to keep out the unfriendliness and bigger weapons to destroy all that which is unfriendly and I believe that we are getting to a place where technology is powerful enough that we may either completely isolate or destroy ourselves as well in this process.

If we decide that the universe is neither friendly nor unfriendly and that God is essentially ‘playing dice with the universe’, then we are simply victims to the random toss of the dice and our lives have no real purpose or meaning.

But if we decide that the universe is a friendly place, then we will use our technology, our scientific discoveries and our natural resources to create tools and models for understanding that universe. Because power and safety will come through understanding its workings and its motives.”

-Albert Einstein

Ray

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Our Visit to Beautiful Walden Pond

April and I have lived in Massachusetts for almost four years. As our time here draws to a close, we’re trying mark things off our places to visit list. We’ve been wanting to hike around Walden Pond (yes, that Walden Pond) since we arrived. I hiked part of it alone a couple years ago, but I didn’t consider it done.

Yesterday was the day. We visited the pond in it’s frozen winter state and navigated the treacherously icy path. Here are some photos from this amazing place. Henry David Thoreau immortalized these beautiful surroundings when he spent two years living in the woods along this pond. He wrote his seminal work – Walden – about this experience.

Walden inspired Thoreau and Thoreau’s writing continues to inspire activists and opposers of the status quo. Both Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King, Jr. applied Thoreau’s approach to change the world.

Even in 2019, taking in the sights, sounds, and smells of this place, it’s easy to see why it so inspired.

365 Days to a Better You – Day 49

Don’t die with your music still inside of you.

One of my favorite moments in Spring is the first time I see and hear a cardinal sing. I love red and so I find cardinals to be stunning birds. The best thing, though, is their amazing song. I can’t get enough of it. I’d love to hear your song too!

The late Wayne Dyer often encouraged his listeners with this aphorism. I never heard Wayne say it, but I’ve always believed he was referring back to another proverb of indistinct origin. “A bird doesn’t sing because it has the answer, it sings because it has a song.

Did you know you have a song inside of you? I believe we all do. You may call it your bliss, your mission, your path. It’s that thing that we cannot imagine dying without having expressed, experienced, and shared. Yet, many of you reading this, have not blessed the world with your song.

“Well,” you might think, “No one really cares about my song. It won’t change the world or my situation.” Are you sure? Who among us knows how a word, a gesture, a thought from you might change everything?

Whether you “singing” your song would shift the world or just shift a moment, read the quote again. The reason for singing your song is not because your song is the answer, though it might be. The reason for singing your song is because you have a song and it’s what you’re here to do. You won’t feel complete until you pipe up. So, pipe up!

It doesn’t have to be the most beautiful song or the most profound. It only needs to be the contribution you came here to make.

No pressure, but it’s time to start singing!

Have a fantastic and song-filled day!

Ray

Random Act of Kindness Day 2019

Happy National Random Acts of Kindness Day! This ought to be every day, right? Paying it forward is one of my favorite random acts of kindness? Please leave a comment below and share your favorite.

Here are some #rayquotes on kindness. I’ve coined these on Twitter over the years. Get our there and BE KIND!

 

  1. In a greedy mind, kindness is weakness. In a wise mind, kindness is wealth.
  2. Kindness is always in fashion.
  3. Kindness pays in a hundred ways.
  4. Kindness matters. Full stop.
  5. When you spread kindness, kindness is what spreads.
  6. Let us create a world where kindness is seen as strength and violence is seen as failure.
  7. Political correctness is a poor, artificial substitute for simply treating each other with the kindness, respect, and compassion we know we should.

Image: Courtesy Pixabay.com

Ray

365 Days to a Better You – Day 48

Expect good things to happen

We humans…SMH! Ninety percent of us seem to be hard-wired to expect the worst. When hold these magical negative beliefs that because things are going “too good” something bad is about to happen.

The news reinforces this. They talk about nothing but the bad, the dangerous, and the fearful.

The truth is there no law of physics that says your winning streak has to end. The universe is not out to get you. Good things are just as likely to happen as bad things. If you have the right mindset, the right preparation, and take the right actions; good things are probably far more likely to happen.

You’ve heard people say things like this. “Things are going so good, I don’t want to jinx it.” Collectively, we’re always worrying about Y2K, 2012, Armageddon, climate catastrophe, or some other disaster that’s about the befall us. I call this the “Chicken Little Syndrome.”

Barbara Hand Clow wrote an interesting book about 15 years ago titled Catastrophobia. In it, she postulated that catastrophic events far back in human history – the flood, comet strikes, or earth changes – have embedded themselves in our collective consciousness. She proposed the almost subconscious memories of these create our prevalent mindset that things are about to come apart.

Now, I’m not claiming that bad things don’t happen. I’m not claiming you won’t have setbacks. I’m saying that, if you’re like most human beings, your expectation that something bad is about to happen far outweighs the reality that is.

According the a Psychology Today article, the placebo effect has a cure rate of 15 to 72 percent. The placebo effect is nothing more than the power of expectation at work. A patient is told they’re being treated by a real drug that is or could be a real cure. In many cases, that is enough to affect a real cure. Amazing!

Numerous experiments have shown that human expectation and intention can impact the reality of the outer world.

Dr. William Tiller, Professor Emeritus of Engineering and Materials Science at Stanford, has led the way in trying to understand the mechanism that allows our minds to affect reality.

We all consider a coin flip to an equitable way to decide something because we all know there’s a 50-50 chance of heads or tails. However, research has consistently shown that intention can significantly skew the supposed evenness of the odds.

Given this awareness, why not live your life as if something good about to happen rather than something bad? You’re just as likely to be right and far less likely to go through your days stressed.

Power hack: Here are some simple power hacks to help you see good on the way for you.

  1. Turn off the news. It’s generally 30 minutes of bad things are coming. Find other ways to get your information.
  2. Pray/meditate. Get quiet. Get focused. Visualize good things coming your way.
  3. Use affirmations to attract and focus on the positive.
  4. Have a positivity support system. Have other people committed to expecting the good and the positive too. Be a support system for each other both in manifesting the positive and in picking you up when the negative does strike.

Have a fantastic day!

Ray

Check out our growing Quotes Library on the TAS website.