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Sporadic photos and notes from a Psyche-midwife, cheerleader, anthropologist--aka clinical social worker in therapy practice. Photos are usually mine except for those of historical events/famous people. Music relevant to the daily topic is often included in a web video embedded below the blog. Click on highlighted links in the copy to get to source or supplemental material. For contact information, see my website @ janasvoboda.com or click on the button to the right below. Join in the conversation.

Friday, January 2, 2015

Tiny Resolutions January 2: Thank You Day

Hope you had a chance to walk in your new year.  Did you know you were practicing Friluftsliv?
Craig Childs should be on the list for being such a wooly
world walker and great storyteller

I didn't either, until this evening when poet Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg posted an article about it.  Here's an excerpt: " Friluftsliv translates directly from Norwegian as "free air life," which doesn't quite do it justice. Coined relatively recently, in 1859, it is the concept that being outside is good for human beings' mind and spirit. "It is a term in Norway that is used often to describe a way of life that is spent exploring and appreciating nature," Anna Stoltenberg, culture coordinator for Sons of Norway, a U.S.-based Norwegian heritage group, told MNN. Other than that, it's not a strict definition: it can include sleeping outside, hiking, taking photographs or meditating, playing or dancing outside, for adults or kids. It doesn't require any special equipment, includes all four seasons, and needn't cost much money. Practicing friluftsliv could be as simple as making a commitment to walking in a natural area five days a week, or doing a day-long hike once a month. "

Sounds like a plan.  I'm always happiest when I am getting enough Free Air Life.

The article's great; take some time to read it if you can.  It goes on to mention a concept you've heard on these pages before, which happens to be what I did today as well:  Shinrin-yoku, or Forest Bathing.  I had a sweet ramble into the woods, where I saw lots of interesting ice formations and made a little talisman of rocks around a fire burn near a landslide.  My legs are singing me to sleep from the good stretch.

You can read more here:   http://www.mnn.com/lifestyle/arts-culture/blogs/7-cultural-concepts-we-dont-have-in-the-us#ixzz3NeMsfGrg

But what about today, you say?  We're going to bless two birds with one stone by practicing gratitude in Real Life, not just in journals or heads.  We all have tons of people to thank in our life and doing so allows them to receive and to know their work has been appreciated.  The practice of expressing gratitude is good for the giver, too-- it's been researched many times with great outcomes.  See blogs at end of page for more.

thank you for Philosophy Talk

80 years of jazzy art:
Earl Newman
Choose 1 or a dozen people to thank in the written form.  Tell them why you are glad they exist and how their existence has added and enriched your own life.  While I have several people in my personal circle that meet the criteria, today I am going to stretch outside a little and send messages and postcards to some people who worked hard doing what they loved and then were kind enough to share it.  I'm thinking Julian Hoffman, who came from across the world to read his intricate treasure of a book, The Small Heart of Things.  And Caryn who sent that and who also made a great book with photographer Stephen Locke.  She wrote the poems and he took the pictures, and let me tell you it is hard core storm porn:  supercells, tornadoes, prairie winds.  A luscious book.  I believe I have sent a thank you already to Cheryl Strayed, author of Wild, a book that inspired and moved me deeply.  And hopefully I got one out to Paul Bogard, whose book on the End of Night made me cry when I read less than 60% of American children will ever see the Milky Way.  I've thanked Charles Goodrich for his poetry and also for his ongoing determination to save the earth.  I need to send a similar letter to philosopher Kathleen Dean Moore.
Elena Passarello:
a great writer and very funny reader

Maybe I'll get a card out to Ocean Liff-Anderson for making such innovative and delicious desserts at Fireworks restaurant, and also for being an all-around-good-guy.  And though I tell her a lot, it wouldn't hurt that my pal Lisa got it in writing that I see her as brilliant, brave, disciplined, an artist and adventurer with a huge heart.  I should probably tell Harriet Lerner that she and Shirley Anstaat and Eve Unkefer were my social work and feminist prototypes and I was so lucky to have grown up near them and get occasionally taken under their powerful wings.

You get the picture.  No limits on who you applaud-- might be your grocer or massage therapist or a community activist.  Zero in on how they are making the world a better place and let them know.  Letters are good but if you are choosing someone outside your circle you can try Facebook or their publisher.

This exercise will remind you that we are a community and are learning from each other; that there are talents out there that not only know some things to do, but practice them and get them in the world.  Maybe you'll get inspired to get brave and disciplined yourself.  Maybe you'll make someone feel good.  At the least, you'll take that hidden admiration and put it out in the world in a way that may lend some energy to someone who works hard and doesn't always know where it goes.

I'm going to try to get at least one out.  But first, I'm going to keep listing names and reasons, and I hope you do too.  The focus on what's good in our lives is an antidote to the constant "not enough" and terror ladled over our heads every day.  We remember there are loads of people conspiring to keep life interesting and beautiful.

Tell them thanks.

See you tomorrow,

1 comment:

Ilsabe OConnell said...

Thank you! You are bringing fresh air to my day already.