“Awareness is the ability to observe how you create something
…as you do it…
Seeing the consequences as they happen.”
From the Book-The New Science of Super-Awareness by Bill Harris
One of our biggest challenges today is maintaining healthy habits. Many of us know what we should be doing. But just knowing what we are doing and what we want to change is not enough. Developing strong health habits begins with awareness.
Awareness is the foundation from which change happens. According to Bill Harris, “awareness creates choice.” With awareness, we see options we weren’t aware of because we understand the impulses or thoughts that generate certain behaviors.
CONNECT™ is a holistic philosophy created to build a solid foundation of awareness. Many of the choices we make are made unconsciously. Our habits are on auto pilot. CONNECT™ bridges the gap between unconscious choices, to conscious choice.
In the area of brain science, “awareness is created in the brain, in the prefrontal cortex. The prefrontal cortex is the seat of executive control or self-regulation, the part of the brain responsible for planning, self-control and will power, complex cognitive behaviors, decision making and social behavior.” (The New Science of Super Awareness by Bill Harris)
The CONNECT™ process raises your awareness of the tendency to make impulsive decisions and choices. It raises awareness about the value you assign to the choices you make; the benefits, advantages, and consequences you recognize about these choices; how you behave in relation to how you feel. This new awareness will lead you to a sense of control that you feel both physically and emotionally over a situation, while acquiring strategies to help you make conscious choices to reach your goals.
Judy Rienzi is the owner of Health Promotion Associates and the author of the CONNECT Health Management System.
My latest obsession is growing sprouts, shoots, and microgreens. I happened to be in the health food store one day and noticed a box of broccoli sprouts. They did not look like the same sprouts I was buying in the grocery store. These had a lot more little green leaves on top and tasted great. This caught my attention. So, after some research, I was compelled to buy Peter Burke’s book Year Round Indoor Salad Gardening, following his technique to the letter with great success.
A whole new world opened up to me. I’ve learned about so many varieties of plants that can be grown into shoots and soil sprouted greens which have become my favorites. Right now I am growing buckwheat, arugula, and red Russian kale soil sprouts and broccoli sprouts which are a staple in my home due to their powerful health benefits.
There is a lot of confusion about the terminology of different immature greens, which I’m still trying to wrap my head around. Soil-sprouts and microgreens, I am learning, are not the same thing and the author makes a distinction between all the greens. “Sprouts, bean sprouts, shoots, microgreens, baby greens, and soil sprouts are all immature greens. Each one is distinct in how it is grown and at what stage of growth it is harvested.” It’s an education in progress.
It’s not often I recommend a self- help or do-it-yourself book. But this one is a gem. Peter Burke, the author, lives in Vermont and has been a long time gardener and teacher of his gardening technique. His method for “soil- sprouts” as he refers to all his sprouted seeds is easy and doesn’t require a lot of equipment like grow lights, pumps, or greenhouses that are necessary for microgreens. Just a dark cupboard and a windowsill. He offers pros and cons for growing sprouts in jars and in soil and I agree that the final product is much better in soil. The texture and taste are very different. Plus, when you grow in soil, you can cut what you need and store the rest in the tray until next use. Growing soil-sprouts produces longer stems and green lush leaves that make a delicious healthy green salad, and great addition to soups, sandwiches, or anything you want to add greens to.
The book is laid out nicely with lists of tools and accessories you will need, great pictures, and step-by step instructions from start-to- finish with a recipe for creating your own soil mix. He mentions a wide variety of plant seeds, pros and cons of the different growing techniques, and troubleshooting solutions. I don’t think there is anything he doesn’t cover in his book. As he says,”you can’t mess this up.”
If you like to garden, no matter how small, you will love this book. There is nothing more satisfying and fun than planting a seed and watching it grow into something healthy and nutritious, especially during the winter months when you want to see some green life growing on a cold grey day.
“Through the ancient teachings of yoga, we know that our thoughts lead to actions; our actions become habits; our habits form our character; and our character determines our destiny. Daily ritual is the act of taking positive thoughts and putting them into action.”
Our hectic lifestyles often leave us stuck in a cycle of stress and overwhelm. We perform daily tasks mindlessly as we let life just happen around us. It becomes difficult to make any life changes because we are physically and emotionally disconnected from our true self. As a result, we can no longer tap into our innate ability for personal growth and healing.
Rituals are a vibrational expression that activate our inner power. We create them in order to shift our energy towards a greater connectedness to ourselves. They are a set of specific actions performed daily that have strong personal meaning for us.
What separates rituals from habits is intention. We become consciously aware of each action we take and what meaning it has for us. Habits are usually performed unconsciously but are just as important because they provide safety and structure to our everyday lives. Rituals raise our mind/body awareness that brings us into a holistic state of being.
Rituals can be performed any time of the day, but much attention has been given to creating a morning ritual. Morning rituals help wake up our mind and body so we can greet the day with a positive mindset. They allow us to set our intention for the day before we become distracted with the tasks of daily living. They improve productivity by increasing our focus on what is important, what our goals are, and how to achieve them. They can reduce stress about the upcoming day, improve clarity, and promote creativity.
Morning rituals can be anything you want them to be, as long they have meaning to you. Engaging all the senses in your ritual will create a connection between the mind and body; what does it look like, feel like, smell like, taste like, and sound like.
You can start out with five or ten minutes if that is all the time you have. Meditating, journaling, writing affirmations, stretching, deep breathing, and walking outside in nature are a few examples to get you started, but you don’t have to do them all at once.
Creating your own daily ritual is the best way to live a more purposeful life and release your inner power.
Looking forward to hearing your thoughts regarding daily rituals.
Holism is from the Greek word holos, which means “all, whole, entire. Holism is a philosophy of life that relates to viewing the body and its properties as a whole system and not the sum of its parts. If you remember, the life wheel includes the physical, emotional, social, career, creativity, and family aspects of our life. These are the different properties of a whole person.
The term holistic health and holistic medicine are often used interchangeably to describe a system of care that integrates all these properties and does not focus solely on the part of the body that is not well. However this is often not the case. The phrase holistic health is often misused. Many believe that if we use a complimentary modality or an unconventional approach to an illness, we are being holistic. But we are still focusing on a single problem and not the whole person. Holistic health is not the type of modality, but rather the approach.
In his article Holistic Health and Medicine in the 1980’s, David Teegarden, MD wrote “In aiming to foster the natural healing process, holistic does not espouse to foster one method over another, but rather encompasses all safe methods of diagnosis and treatment- including medication and surgery, when appropriate”. He goes on the say “Patient and practitioner cooperate to achieve the desired results”.
There are many methods of healing we can learn from both Western and Eastern medicine. It is this collection of healing philosophies and practices that we should embrace and not exclude one over the other.
As a holistic health seeker, it is our responsibility to create an effective pathway to health that integrates the whole person spiritually, physical, and emotionally.