Music – soul-stirring

Sunday Morning Thoughts – I would have written about my love for music a few months ago; ICYMI you can take a look here https://carolebeckford.wordpress.com/2018/11/18/music-is-the-path-to-ones-soul/

Well, I am back again.

Great place to sit back, relax and enjoy

Music evokes emotions that you never knew you had.

I will go with the positives – happiness, joy, peace, love, adoration and inspiration, to name a few. I would be willing to share some artistes that I think can assist with you with drawing closer attention to that side of you which makes you mellow. Mellow, here, can be defined as a state of soothing that makes you calm and reflective, but with enough joy to make you want to take on the next BIG thing.

I use music to start and end my day. I know by now what gets me going, keeps me in the mood and what will help me relax for a great night’s sleep. I have choices!

Here’s where I am gonna show my biases.

To start the day:

Mondays – gotta choose songs that will motivate you towards a big picture – a way to kickstart the regular work week. I look for up-tempo but groovy tunes. I won’t eb specific with the songs, but I will tell you some of the artistes – Bill Withers, Stephanie Mills, John Coltrane, Bob Marley.

This picture is not mine.

Tuesdays – by the time we get here, we are well in the work week and Friday is approaching so you feel you want to let go – add some soca to the mix, and yes, I am a Bunji Garlin fan (Antigua helped me appreciate soca); you drop in some Chronixx, Kabaka Pyramid, Aretha, Michael Jackson and Bob Marley.

Wednesdays – Hump Day Blues – my line of work says I would have already done 40 hours by this day, so I can cruise. No…not so fast, there is a fire to out! And when you get that call, you said “not today” – so you draw for Peter Tosh, Steel Pulse, Angie Stone. You might think, how is that mix even possible? It is a habit I have developed to study the vibe of each singer, and I find I just select the songs each of these days. By the way, Google knows this too and makes recommendations song by song. Someone is always watching.

As we inch closer to Friday – it gets closer to party music, more soca and dance music including dancehall, Beenie Man, Konshens, Kes and a little Usher, Joe and I could go on!

Kes – One of the hottest men in the Caribbean

Weekends now is the refection time – and there is a whole host of folks to choose from, too many to mention. Grover, Donny, Anita, Freddie, James and Bob. You can find a “Bob Marley” tune for any occasion and for any emotion.

Music thrills the soul. Music lines the heart for love. Music drives the emotions of fear away to a place where you can find balance and remain focused on what is to be. Use music as a soul-stirrer. So, while you are trying to figure it out – Life has A Way, to take you Back to Love and you will determine the Point of it All.  #OneLove

PS – One day I will write about my love affair with Marvin Gaye’s music.

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Self Care – Part 5 – Reading

In this encounter, I will delve into another area which helps you to feel great about yourself. So far I would have encouraged you to eat right, enjoy music, travel for leisure and sport; but this time I want you to explore reading.

There are so many quotes/sayings associated with reading; here are some to chew on:

  • We read to know we are not alone 
  • Whenever you read a good book, somewhere in the world a door opens to allow in more light –Vera Nazarian
  • I think of life as a good book. The further you get into it, the more it begins to make sense – Harold Kushner
  • Books are the quietest and most constant of friends; they are the most accessible and wisest of counselors, and the most patient of teachers – Charles William Eliot

Reading has a way of taking you into a space which can help you to relax when life is throwing serious challenges at you. Reading takes you away, even temporarily, from the reality of what you confront, to a place where you want to be. Reading also gives you the opportunity to consult over and over without any judgment from anyone – it is that gift you can open over and over again.

inspiration

The good thing is, you can read just about anywhere

  • On the train
  • On a plane
  • At the coffee shop
  • In your bed
  • On your couch
  • In class
  • On the beach
  • Even in a meeting

Here are some ways you can start the habit of reading

  • Research the authors you find readable
  • Get their books
  • Find books on topics you find interesting – this makes reading easy
  • Find books on topics you need to learn more on – this can be hard in the beginning, but you will get there
  • Find a source to get the books – online or at a book store
  • Also, determine if you prefer books or on your device/s

Reading is a worthwhile hobby, but can tack up costs very quickly, so find ways and means to get books at the most reasonable costs. Join a book club so you can find folks who may want to exchange ideas and even books. A book club is also a way to be encouraged to read more, the interactivity helps.

The impact of reading on your life should be a positive one and I encourage you to read a book at least once a quarter; that is the recommendation if you are just getting into the habit. At the moment, I read a book a month, sometimes two; but then I have been doing this for a long time.

Whatever you decide to do, read a book soon – Reading is to the mind what exercise is to the body – Richard Steele.

#ReadABookToday

Self Care – Part 3 – Go somewhere you’ve never been

May 7 – The last time we spoke on Self Care, I recommended that you go somewhere you’ve never been.

So after you have figured out the food, music, TV shows, clothes and exercise routines you would become accustomed to; I have a few more suggestions.

Self Care speaks to a routine, one which requires habitual acts. In the early stages do some of the activities the same time of day and same day each week. This kind of repetition will create a rhythm so the practice becomes a routine.

By now you would have created your playlists. These playlists should be done based on a particular mood. If you are a writer like me, there is a playlist to help you relax, one to boost a new idea, one to refresh the memory among other things.

Go somewhere you’ve never been

Go Somewhere

New places have a way to set one’s soul on fire; it makes one curious and those kinds of missions allow you to see and hear things you’ve never seen before. The trip/journey to the new location allows for a perspective of value that one will never be able to get if you stay home all the time.

Here’s how some see travel

  • A wise man travels to discover himself – James Russell Lowell                                                            
  • All travel has its advantages. If the passenger visits better countries, he may learn to improve his own. And if fortune carries him to worse, he may learn to enjoy it. –Samuel Johnson

Travel

This other quote I found speaks to the adventure

  • Please be a traveler, not a tourist. Try new things, meet new people and look beyond what’s right in front of you. These are the keys to understanding this amazing world we live in – Andrew Zimmern

So as the experts recommend, once a year, do something different. The food, music, people, locations and the language of the folks you will experience would be well worth the time spent away. I have a friend who does a blog at this link mytravelstamps.com/ – here you will find tips on travel you will want to take note of before you head off to your first/adventure. The blog clearly speaks to Ways You Can Save; Bucket List; Business Layovers and so many other things. Read it when you have some time.

Mix and match the self care activities

While you are having fun traveling, here are some fun things you can do

  • Try the local spa
  • Hop off to any of the local bars
  • Walk in the park closest to your hotelMoment
  • Go to a local play or music show

Makes notes for a journal if you feel the need and takes loads of pictures

Life is really about enjoying the moments. You can go this alone or tag along with a few friends. Either way – E-N-J-O-Y!

In the next piece, we will talk about Sport Travel.

 

 

Self Care – Part 2 – makes you feel fresh

SUNDAY – Today, or any other Sunday, is probably the best day to do so many things you have not done for the week. On the other hand, it is also the day one should take a break – Eat. Pray. Love – to get ready for the week ahead.

Sunday

The recommendation is always to write down the things you want to achieve. You may even want to create a list. Over time, as you go through the list each week or month (which is what I recommend); you will become accustomed to planning and implementing the things that pulls you off the grind and brings you back full center.

In Part 1,  https://carolebeckford.wordpress.com/2018/04/15/self-care-a-new-form-of-energy/ I never really did define Self Care, but I think you get my gist. It is that process that focuses on ensuring you have done anything just to make you feel good/great about yourself. 

I will therefore share some of the easier ways to achieve this so you can ease into making this process one that you grow into and making it a habit. Last time, we never spoke about food, but here we go:

Create a log of food you eat for a week, then determine if over the next week, you will maintain or change that list. We have different reactions to food. We also have different needs where food is concerned, but for self care, we are going to focus on foods that make us feel the best about ourselves. Hope this picture helps with the variety I want to convey. Of course, add some meat along the way or whatever else you eat. Just add water.

Self Care Food

Focus on self care as being essential to you. Never see it as a reward. Over time, it should become part of what you do daily. Here is a chart that should identify the effort you need to put:

self care

I strongly recommend MUSIC as part of any self care plan. Recently on Facebook, friends have asked to tag 10 favorite albums. These albums, though you may not admit, form part of your life. You sing, dance and hum every word, rhythm and rhyme you can remember. Some experts recommend meditation music. While there is need for that too, the songs that made you happiest, dance the best and gave you a good vibe are the ones you should focus on. Now, you can compile a play list; before we had to play each album or just pick the song and play it over and over again. Start working on that list now.

Self care music

This sums up how important self care is – “Rest and self-care are so important. When you take time to replenish your spirit, it allows you to serve others from the overflow. You cannot serve from an empty vessel.” – Eleanor Brownn

Self Control

In the next article, we will look at – going somewhere you’ve never been – to create moments you will never forget. Until then #OneLove

 

Self Care – a new form of energy

SUNDAY (Funday) – Over the last five years life has become so much more hectic. In my line of work (marketing, communications, media), information and consumption trends have changed tremendously. I have had to ensure that these tools are used in the most efficient way – either by me – or by teams I end up working with.

That said, during that time, I have begun to pay way more attention to rest, relaxation and rejuvenation, also known as self care.  The process is one which requires some thought, as it falls within the routine you would usually have.

Here are some tips you may consider as you head into self care:

  • Listen to music from one of the happiest periods of your life Playlists
  • Write down all the things you love about your life
  • Watch a few episodes of your favorite TV shows back to back every now and again
  • Dance to your favorite songs (15 minutes) at least once a week
  • Refresh your wardrobe. Donate.
  • Volunteer to a cause that means a lot to you
  • Take a drive out of town. Roll down the windows. Turn up the sound and SING out loud
  • Once a month, get body treatments you prefer – massage, pedicure, manicure, yoga, sauna steam20171104_103822
  • Say “no” if you can’t do it
  • Skip the routine once in a while and do something different and wild20180223_133644