Posted in Health and Wellness

Lavender – in my front yard!

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There are some things, after all, that Sally Owens knows for certain: Always throw spilled salt over your left shoulder. Keep rosemary by your garden gate. Add pepper to your mashed potatoes. Plant roses and lavender, for luck. Fall in love whenever you can.

Alice Hoffman

I touch the blooms every morning before I leave for work and every evening when I return from work. I brush my fingers across my nostrils to inhale the sweet, calming perfume which floods my body with a sense of serenity and pride… that I actually have a little hedge of lavender plants right in my front yard!  Had I known of the deep pleasure from this simple act, I would have planted lavender 10 years ago!

Gardening in Canada has been quite a challenge for me. It took me almost 10 years to understand the difference between annuals and perennials!  It was not the meaning of the words that challenged me but my brain would simply not make the natural connection between planting flowers and vegetables during various seasons, thinking though plants which needed full sunlight, shade and partial sunlight and the illogical sense that delicate plants could survive the freezing winters and pop up the following  year!

I grew up on the island of Saint Lucia where we do not have to ever pay attention to seasons of the year.  There are 365 beautiful sunny days and we don’t have to think about annuals and perennials.  We planted flowers and vegetable and they grew and bloomed – although we did pay attention to the moon! Small things like our approach to  gardening can demonstrate many differences in cross cultural communication.  It took me ten years to make gardening in Canada a natural part of my life and to have a deeper appreciation for what should be planted during the various seasons of the year.

Anyway, I started gardening a bit more purposefully two summers ago and I am pleasantly surprised by some of the plants which I have discovered such as Lavender. I have always loved the fragrance of lavender.  When I planted it, I almost did not expect it to grow – it seemed to be a bit too sophisticated for my yard.  I was so pleasantly surprised to see the plants bloom this spring and even more surprised to learn (by watching many you tube videos), that lavender grows very well in dry soil. It does not require heavy maintenance except for pruning at the right time, to facilitate better growth for the following year.

These photos show the growth for this year.  I am looking forward to pruning the flowers and making little lavender sachets with them!

The journey of a thousand miles begin with a single step! Imagine the possibilities of a lavender hedge…and the beautiful fragrance of lavender all over my yard!

 

Have a blessed day!

Love,

Magdalene

 

Posted in Health and Wellness, Inspiration, Women

Give a compliment today – it can change someone’s life as well as yours

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I clearly remember that day, twelve years ago,  when I got up and felt that life had become too much for me to cope with.  I felt depressed and my sense of identity was slowly drifting away as I struggled to find myself in this new country.  On that day, I got on a bus and as I made my way to a seat, a beautiful older woman, a total stranger, said, “You are so beautiful. You radiate.”  Her voice was so sweet and soothing – something in the way she said it, breathed life into me.   I was a little taken aback by the compliment, said thank you and sat in my seat.  However, those words made a huge difference to my soul that day.  Someone had seen beauty, even when I felt that I was dying on the inside.

Our words to ourselves and to each other can create miracles in our lives. The more we look for the good and beauty in others and let them know about it, the more we also benefit from that energy.  It lifts us up.  It gives hope to others and reinforces the beauty and good in them.

Give someone a compliment today.  Write it on their FB page.  Send it through an e-mail.  Give a recommendation on LinkedIn. Give a stranger a compliment.   You can go even further… make it a day of compliments… give compliments all day long! I guarantee you that you will smile more!

What inspired this post this morning?

I received a beautiful note from my friend Malika last night which said:

“Have I told you how PROUD I am of you!!! I am!!! You have become even more of an inspiration than when you taught with me….Your journey has showed me that ANYTHING is possible….Finding your passion and happiness is really the key isn’t it? 🙂 Love you”

Thank you Malika.  You brought a huge smile to my face last night and I still have it.

Stay blessed and create an amazing day with compliments.

Love,

Magdalene

 

Posted in Health and Wellness, Inspiration, Motivation

Are you so busy trying to fix life, that your own life is slipping away from you?

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 After many years of trying to fix myself and people and things around me, I have come to realize that this “fixing” business is just a lot of crap.  We are somehow conditioned to believe that something is wrong with us or someone else and we need “something” to fix us.  My perspective now, is that in the grand scheme of things, the only person you have responsibility for is yourself and your soul knows all the answers to the things you want to fix. What we do need, is the courage to act on what we feel. Somehow, most of us are buried in the clutter of other people’s ideas or ideals and we are held hostage by things which have nothing to do with our authentic self.  Who are you?  What does your authentic self say to you? Whatever you decide to do or to be – it will be just that… and you will draw to yourself, similar energies and people who are simply in alignment with you and match with your emotional vibration. When  you are in alignment, there is no need to fix anything or anyone… life simply flows.

That means you FEEL that you are in the right job.

You FEEL that you are in the right relationship.

You MOVE when you FEEL you are in the wrong place with the wrong person.

You don’t apologize for being true to yourself because YOU know that what feels right for you.

You FEEL that you are longer struggling to be more, to have more or to do more.  Whatever you have to do FLOWS with you.

You FEEL an inner contentment that sits quietly inside of you.

Just for a moment,  try not to fix anything, anyone, any problem or any system. In this moment, you will find peace regardless of whatever is confronting you. Keep on multiplying this moment over and over again… and you will realize that you can live a greater, more magnificent life by not needing or wanting to fix yourself or anyone.

BE PRESENT.

FOCUS ON YOUR BREATH.

BREATHE IN AND OUT.

FEEL GRATITUDE FLOWING THROUGH YOUR BODY.

Just keep on repeating, “thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you….”

I give thanks now  for what I have considered to be flaws and weaknesses because these are actually assets when aligned with the right people and circumstances.

I enjoy more moments of simply being fine wherever I am because I know for a fact that something in my thoughts took me to that place.  If I am not happy with where I am, I know now, that I need to change a thought pattern to get me more where I want to be.

If you can’t compose a peaceful inner space…how can you fix anything or anyone? Your vibration of peacefulness will attract more peace… then you won’t need to fix anything…. You will find that inner space to be true to yourself. All else will fall in place.

TuneIn and StepUp to simply being the best of who you are.  Life will align with you. Guess what – YOU are perfectly fine, perfectly made… and you are right where your thoughts have led you.

Love,

Magdalene

Posted in Health and Wellness, People who inspire others, Women

Are you aging gracefully?

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My friend Sharon stopped by my office a few weeks ago and I could not help but admire her clear flawless complexion and her youthful energy. She is a great role model of a woman who is aging gracefully.  (I won’t tell you her age!) I met her eleven  years ago and was instantly drawn to her lovely, long silver hair and her very positive energy. She exudes a beautiful, zen presence and makes others feel completely welcomed in her space, wherever that space is.  Coincidentally, I met her around the same time when I was in a dilemma about whether I should dye my hair as a few strands were turning grey.  Looking at her hair made me decide not to dye mine – why not just keep in natural?  Eleven years later, I am glad that I kept all my greys because I am enjoying them completely.  It makes me feel wiser – maybe one day my hair will look like Sharon’s hair.

Women and men become more mindful of aging after the age of 40.  For me, my 40’s are amazing years in my life. I had several conversations with women from  different parts of the world who use different strategies to age gracefully.  Here are some of their secrets for aging gracefully:

– Make decisions based on your values and your visions for your life.  You will never please everyone but make sure that you are happy or can genuinely live with whatever decisions you make in  life.

– Forgive quickly.  Don’t hold on to anger and resentment.  It kills your spirit slowly.  Find a way to let go of things and people which has caused you grief.

– Do something positive for yourself and someone else or for the environment every day.  Doing good and positive things make you feel good about yourself.  When you feel good, it naturally boost your immune system, reduces stress and relaxes your body. Stress causes your heart rate  to go up and causes other illnesses such as digestive problems, ulcers and even cancer.

– Live simply that others may simply live. Sharon told me that she lives her life by this motto – as she grows older, there is a need to have less things in her own life.  She is a great example of reaching out to others in a soft, compassionate and heartfelt way.

– Eat lots of greens, vegetables and fruit. Stay away from sugar.  Sugar creates yeast in the body. Yeast causes havoc.  Greens, fruits and vegetables provides nutrients which makes our skin glow, keeps our hair healthy and helps our organs to function at their optimal capacity.

– Exercise daily. Walk, swim, do crunches, cycle,  run, aerobics, weights, jumping jacks, ski – physical exercise produces endorphins which makes us feel good.  Find out what your ideal weight should be and try to stay within in.

– Meditate and pray.  A few quiet  moments each day does wonders for our souls.  It reconnects us to our spirit and makes us feel the “awe” of life.

– Create moments to simply give thanks for all the good things in your life. Give thanks for all the bad things too.  A heart full of gratitude brings abundance to us.

– Choose your battles. No need to fight with everyone and everything.  Some things are best left alone.  Karma deals with everything…. the good, the bad and the ugly.

– Smile.  It is that simple.  It keeps your face looking relaxed and invites others into your space.

– Be genuine with others.  There is no need to hang around people whom you really do not care about.  We don’t have to like everyone but we need to be genuine. Not being genuine drains our good energy.

– Enjoy the presence of others by being in the present moment. Enjoy good company.  Plan moments for you to get away with others whom you really genuinely care about.

– Work at a job you love.  If you don’t have a job you love, start adjusting your attitude towards it, find another job or create a job for yourself.  Work stress negatively impacts our emotional and spiritual health.  This causes us to age rapidly.

– Be in a happy relationship which gives you the opportunity to grow and share in an intimate and “heart connecting” way.

– Enjoy physical touch.  Hug.  Kiss. Make love. Massage. Touch others with love and embrace the touch of others with love.

– Try new experiences.  Your brain need stimulation and has the ability to build neural connections throughout life.

– Spend time in nature.  Nature takes us back to balance.

– Plan events/occasions/opportunities to look forward to.

My own special tip – stay away from people and situations which cause unnecessary anxiety and stress.

Love fully. Laugh loudly. Live with abandon.

What are your tips for aging gracefully?

TuneIn and StepUp to create  your own mindset that this is YOUR life…not a dress rehearsal.  So live it up and age gracefully!

Love,

Magdalene