Welcome to April Gratitude Goodies
The theme this month is ‘spread the love’. I was inspired to have a theme for this month’s GG after watching the TED talk below on oxytocin. It is amazing to hear that oxytocin affects morality and that we can trigger the release of oxytocin simply by hugging people – and in doing so we can help them feel better and also become more moral. Gratitude practice also releases oxytocin.
Loads! It seems like everything is happening at once… including a USA/Canada trip. We are travelling to the USA and Canada to finish off the final interviews for our documentary and also attend the Pathways to Gratitude Summit in SF…. see below.
Upcoming public 30 Day Gratitude Challenge Life Classes for Australia. Also Canada - Edmonton and USA - San Francisco Gratitude Life Classes in July!! Register your interest here: email@example.com with the city name in the subject line and I will contact you about dates.
I am so excited to be asked to speak at the Pathways to Gratitude Summit in San Francisco, the line up of speakers is varied and impressive. The summit is in honor of Br David Steindl – Rast (check out his upcoming e course on this page). The fact that I was invited to join such people on the stage is not just an honor, it seems like some sort of miracle that I cannot fully comprehend. I hope I get to meet some of you there. While in the states we will be interviewing Br David and many other amazing people for our documentary – Goodness Gracious Me!
We are also working on a school program – if you are a teacher (or very involved in education) and have done the Gratitude LIfe Class or are quite connected to gratitude then I would love to hear from you.
Monthly Gratitude Challenge
This month’s challenge is based on Paul Zak’s Ted talk below - show your gratitude this month through hugs. Apparently 8 hugs a day will really fire the oxytocin and get you feeling great. You will also be letting others know how you feel and helping release good chemicals into their brains – there are loads of good reasons to hug. So the challenge is - HUG eight times a day – you can do this just as an expression of gratitude to people you know…..
OR…if you are a brave soul and want to ramp the challenge up a notch – make a FREE HUGS sign and go out into streets with it. If any of you are willing to go out and hug strangers in this way – let me know that you are doing it and I will match the challenge and do it too. Send photos!!
As always, I love to hear how you go with the challenges I set.
More about Gratitude
It seems there is a never ending list of benefits that gratitude practice bestows. One I have noticed is that I can go back over old memories and re think them using gratitude. I have found this takes much of the sting and pain out of past situations and I have been impressed by how quickly it works for me. According to neuroscientist Bruce McKewan (Rockerfeller Uni) our memories are the major source of psychological stress in our lives – so this can be a useful way to help lessen the stress you experience daily.
What I do is just visit the old memory, and step aside a little and try to view the situation from a distance. I deliberately lay down the usual stories I tell myself about that particular memory and instead ask myself questions like ”What was good about that situation?”, ”What have I learned?”. ”How has this benefitted me or others?”, “What is there to be grateful for?” etc There might be other questions that might apply to the particular memory like ”Could I be mistaken about their motives?” that might help me come to another much less traumatic story. I may have to do this a few times and then, when I tell the story of that memory to myself or others I begin to bring in the other aspects… and the pain decreases dramatically.
I love this film
I have just started a little film review spot on ABC Coast FM called ‘I love that film!’. I get to review films that I love and that I think have an ability to bring enrichment to our lives. This month’s film is The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel - enjoy the review – I love that film!
I am on a mission! I want this 7 minute gem to be seen by everyone….. SEEING
Made by Dietrich Ludwig, an 18 year old student, it very touching and beautiful – also very well made. To see a young man communicate great wisdom with such flair is wonderful.
Please share this film and help the world see this great message.
Ted Talks to Inspire
Paul Zak talks about Trust, Morality and Oxytocin. While the talk is not directly connected to gratitude Paul tells us how essential to it is to have oxytocin being produced by our body. Oxytocin is a key to trust, generosity, and a great economy (among other things).
Worthy of your Library
Since I started looking into the science of how our brains work I have become a little obsessed – there is interesting, fascinating, amazing stuff coming out all the time. If you want a great handbook on the brain - a book that will give you a good clear overview of how the brain works – and also how to maximise that knowledge for happiness then you can’t go past this book REWIRE YOUR BRAIN by Dr John Arden.
You will learn what is happening when we experience stress, anxiety etc and find simple ways to alter old patterns.
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Please feel free to keep in touch and if you find anything great that might suit sharing in the Goodies, please let me know. We would love you to LIKE our Facebook if you haven’t already. Have a great month.
Warm regards, Toni