At Work

That’s my regular seat when at work on my blog. It’s my tablet. It’s also my cold frappe. 

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Mindful Thinking and Youth Empowerment 

#youth-empowerment 

Mindfulness is often looked at as a part of counseling or psychotherapy.  In fact,  mindfulness involves living in the present moment in an active,  as opposed to a passive,  way.  Perhaps “mindful thinking ” or “mindful presence ” would better describe this state of being. And the sooner we learn this,  the sooner we can become empowered.  So much failure is seen every day in both poor and affluent communities.  There is no group unaffected by success and by failure. There is no single person who has not been affected.  The important thing is to learn from our failures and understand our successes. 

The most difficult thing to learn is the difference between existing and living. Did you do something alive today? Did you make a difference to yourself? To others? Was there a microcosm of your activities that will affect someone or something positively now or in the future? Were you happy today? Why? What was fulfilling? What was frightening? What have you learned from all this? These are questions we need to answer every day and I make the ones I’m helping answer. 

Parentsand educators need to empower the young. They need to make them get involved. They need to make them participate here and now in the reality they are encompassed by. 

Heroism is a simple concept. We should all be heroes every day. We can help someone who needs help. We can put a smile on someone’s face. We can work towards actively listening and coming up with solutions. Heroes should not be scarce. They should be in abundance. The definition of heroism should not be strict. It should be of someone wanting to help and making difference for the better in some way. 

My first cause was ending hunger. I made people aware of hunger and thought I was empowering them. I didn’t go further than educating them on the subject,  thinking they’d get up and go out and make a difference. Even with the proper knowledge and tools,  it is still difficult to delve into something as broad as hunger without having a starting point and some mentorship. Social networks need to be built and support needs to be given. 

Pride in one’s self is tantamount and paramount in being at your most optimal existence in the present moment and taking an active role in living in the situation you are currently experiencing.  You cannot be weighed down by self – doubt while trying to progress. The steps to opening the door to growth must not be opened until we are comfortable of who we are in the present and let go of the past as a learning experience.  

Young women often face big obstacles when it comes to body image. They face scrutiny and even bullying,  usually by other young women.  Living in lieu of existing helps to overcome this barrier. I find this perhaps the most difficult obstacle to be overcome by anyone of any age group. And the culprit is the unenlightened trying to feel worthy by making others feel worthless. It is a dangerous form of mirroring that often has terrible consequences.  When damaged at this point in life,  it is often close to impossible to get on the right path. This is why bullying of any sort needs to be eradicated and a learning experience for the victim. We as a society need to impress harshly on everyone that this behavior must be shunned and punished. When the bully understands the dire impact of their actions,  they can then learn to live in the present with the former victim that is ahead of them in self – growth.  

When learning to follow a healthy  lifestyle and path,  one will soon be empowered and,  in no time,  enlightened.  Democracy starts working at this level. The empowerment tools in mindful existence have paved the road to an egalitarian and democratic existence for all members of society. Still,  idealism will not be achieved until we are all down this superlative path to enlightenment and satisfaction.  

In a nutshell,  empowerment coaching,  or enabling,  becomes the start and end point between the pre – empowerment phase all the way to the post – enlightenment phase. And an enabler can be a parent,  a friend,  or a professional coach. And your goals are attained through this life path. 

Methoni’s Lambes Beach — From Virgin Nudist Sands to Small Resort 

#Lambes #Methoni 

It wasn’t long ago,  last I remember circa 2001, when Lambes Beach,  just 3 kilometers from Methoni,  was a barren virgin beach with tons of open space and plenty of room for mostly German and French tourists to park their campers just meters away from the shore. They would only come to town  (Methoni) for provisions and maybe a meal or drink and just come back to the base. It was tranquil day and night. In the day, most of the tourists stationed there were nude. This wasn’t the creepy nude type. It was naturism . And families with toddlers were participating. It wasn’t easy to go there,  but the townsfolk would go and sneak a peek just to have some fresh gossip to bring into town. And of course,  they wanted to see someone that came to town so they can gossip about them when they were having beer at a neighbouring table at night. 

For the hedonists that miss their naturism, perhaps Ios is the place for you. Just press on the previous link. 

Lambes was so little known that it wasn’t listed in most tourist guides outside the naturist ones.  At night, it’s where the townsfolk came to park their cars in the pitch darkness of nothing but moonlight and have a ‘romantic ‘ evening. We knew who was there by the car because no one ever came out. They must have had large and strong bladders. It was the best I ever felt just hugging tight and listening to the calmness of the small waves breaking.  It was a time for clear thoughts and musing with the significant other next to you at that particular time. It was like a Vegas —what was said there stayed there. Except for the rumours in town from unwanted observers the next day. 

The picture above is almost exactly where the campers used to be. This is the restaurant that has forcibly made the beach smaller. Next to it is a bar and behind these is a swimming pool. A hundred meters over is the fairly newly built highway from Methoni to Finikounda and crossing that takes you to a nice quaint hotel that’s part of Finiki village, the official location of Lambes. All in all,  this is a nice and well priced mini resort that allows you to have everything you may need at a beach vacation. 

The tourists are more snotty and the naturists are being forced to find even more secluded terrain. For those of us who miss its beauty,  we blame the highway. The Methoni -Finikounda road was a tight and dangerous one and now it is the best piece of highway south of Kalamata.  

This is the view from Finiki to Lambes. 

And this is when you reach the Methoni town limits 

Quebec’s Healthcare System a Total Failure 

These 2 bozos are responsible for austerity measures to Quebec healthcare.  They are slashing jobs and services and promoting for -profit private medical clinics. SHAMEFUL!!!

Here’s when it started.


Finally got a family doctor. After a decade of running through clinics and a depleted hospital system ( that considers you an emergency only if you may be having a heart attack or are in excruciating pain) , I found a doctor who doesn’t try to get rid of you in 5 minutes. She’s not extraordinary. She’s what a doctor should be. 

Quebec politicians have decided to screw with our health care system. They are treating the system with austerity measures that force you to go private. Until I found my new doctor, I had to pay to see a doctor at a private clinic, which goes anathema to my core beliefs. But as you eld , you begin to realize that your health has no price tag. And I saw specialists in record time and got scans done immediately. I got no attitude from overworked and burnt out nurses. It was fantastic. And I was insured for everything except the GP consultations. But my bad 2016 could have been worse. 
For this reason, I am against the current provincial liberal administration’s healthcare policies. There’s a lot of good people in the hospital that are treated like shitt because funding has evaporated and continues being depleted. We lose great minds to other provinces and countries. We have turned into a 3rd world enclave surrounded by progressivism that makes our regressivism stick out in shame.
I call for a complete rebranding of the system. If we need to take the Ontario or Alberta models, so be it. So-called Canadian socialism is failing us because it is being used perversely by all the politicians except, ironically, the separatists. We live in a linguistic and racist junta where the culprits are the progressive politicians. SAD!!!

Top 10 Superfoods of 2017 

Superfoods are foods that are beneficial to someone’s health above the call of duty. I have listed some below that may help you feel better. Eating food whole is better than any supplement. These foods are either curative or preventative in nature. 

1.Avocados 

Those of you who know me should be aware of my shameless promotion of avocados. I have looked for reasons not to put them as my favourite superfood,  but can’t find any. 
Avocado is my go – to food when I need healthy calories and fat along with a ridiculous amount of fiber. There is also a good amount of protein in avocados. Its texture makes it and the banana the fruits of choice to smoothen your smoothies. 

Here’s how to know if your avocados are ripe. It takes a while,  but you’ll become an expert avocado connaisseur in no time. I would recommend no more than one regular avocado a day,  due to the high fiber content that may be difficult to digest in abundance. 
2. Greek Yoghurt 

Greek yoghurt is a fantastic source of protein at 18 grams per serving, compared to half that amount for ordinary yoghurt.  I have purposely pictured a 2% fat yoghurt for 2 reasons : yoghurt fat can be good for you and there are chemicals at work in taking fat out of dairy products. Make the choice that’s right for you. 

3.  Kefir 

There’s so much talk about Probiotics these days. Thanks to the damage processed and sugar rich foods have done to our digestive enzymes,  more and more of us need Probiotics to help us digest some foods that have suddenly become indigestible.  These include mainly fibrous foodswhich, ironically, are the ones that help us digest. 

For years,  Probiotics have tasted terrible. Nowadays they’re delicious. I recommend the plain flavoured ones because of their low sugar content. I usually make them flavourable by adding maple syrup,  a great sugar alternative. 

4. Pears 

Pears have overtaken apples in keeping the doctor away. They are rich in fiber and comparatively low in sugar. Here’s why you need them as a staple fruit.  

5. Hemp 

Hemp has more pure amino acids than any other non – meat product.  This means no other food not coming from an animal has more essential proteins than hemp.  Hemp is great for people working out and who want to both lose and gain weight.  It can be taken in seed or flake form. But take it!  Sprinkle it on your salad or anywhere else. It’s good for you! 

6. Raspberries 

It took me a while to like raspberries.  That’s because I was eating when they weren’t fully ripe yet.  Raspberries have great anti – inflammatory and anti – oxidant properties.  Paleos and others who avoid fruit raspberries as it is not considered a fruit by many. Or maybe because it’s just very essential as a regulatory food. 

7. Maca 

One of many Incan superfoods,  Maca has numerous health benefits. It’s a powder to be sprinkled on something every morning.  Its high Vitamin C concentration will give you a boost and will keep your immune system active and well. 

8. Almond Butter 

The above almond butter jar costs between  $15 to  $20 a pop. But it is worth the price considering the powerful impact of fiber and protein and energy that it supplies our bodies with.  Almond butter has overtaken peanut butter as the king of nut spreads.  It is best eaten organic,  raw,  and smooth. Like the avocado,  people with digestive problems need to start with smaller amounts and work their way up. 

9. Alfalfa 

We’ve all seen alfalfa on fancy sandwiches or as a topping on healthy salads. It is one of the premier sources of digestive enzymes. Put it on top of anything. Every meal. It’s really helpful and necessary as a staple in your fridge. 

10. Quinoa 

Another Incan staple superfood,  quinoa is unquestionably essential in helping promote wellness . Second to essential amino acids to hemp when it comes to meatless foods, it is also high in fiber. On top of quinoa salads,  I have now discoveredquinoa cereal and quinoa porridge,  the latter being a great alternative to the  hard-to”-digest oatmeal porridge. Such a polyvalent food,  it’s hard to not have a permanent spot for it in your cupboard. 
Making this list was difficult, especially with about a half dozen other choices I had to leave out. What are your favourite superfoods? 

 

10 Most Attractive Women 

While most of these countdowns judge women only by looks,  I judge them by achievement, talent, perseverance, and,  of course,  if I’m attracted to them. Some you know and some you don’t.  So here we go. 

10.Bjork Gudmundsdottir 

I picked the above picture of Bjork because it exemplifies her breaking stereotypes.  I heard her when I was in my early teens singing in Icelandic and telling God does not exist. Her website shows how far she’s come. For me,  she is the most influential artist ever and represents progressivism.  A great actress, she plays in one of my favorite all -time movies,  Dancer in the Dark.
9.Eugenie Bouchard 

It was tooth -cringing time when Eugenie Bouchard answered her favorite Canadian artist was Justin Bieber.  It wasn’t the choice,  but rather the timing —at the end of a Grand Slam tennis match. It showed how young and sheltered she was.  But lately,  she’s gotten a personality and has shown perseverance on her way back from near the top to near the bottom. 

8.Maryse Ouellet 

Ok, other than her Montreal connection and entertainment factor, I picked Maryse because she is a beautiful woman. She comes from a wrestling family and was a champion in the WWE.  

7.Alisson Stokke 

When it comes to fitness no one looks more fit than Alisson Stokke. She is a champion pole vaulter and is in impeccable physical shape. She is also a role model for future female athletes.

6.Taylor Swift 

We all know who Taylor Swift is. I’ve always liked her songs about heartache in a country pop groove. She has proven she has a lot of range and can even sing some good heavy metal. She is a fashion icon and all around good person. She’s one of the few you don’t hear rumors about. Like it or not, she’s got tons of talent. 

5.Padma Lakshmi  

Padma Lakshmi has achieved a lot in her life. Her Sri Lankan-Indian background has made her unique as someone breaking out of cultural norms. She is a model,  chef, writer,  and wooed one of the smartest men in the world to marry her. She helps others and is a strong role model who exemplifies freedom of expression and women’s rights. 
4.Victoria Koutava 

I met this girl while shopping in Kalamata,  in Greece. She works at the Zara store there. I later found out she was an Instagram hit. Nothing less than a fashion star and guru in the making. Google Aggeliki Victoria Koutava for more of her and a bit about her. Joan Rivers would have loved her. 

3.Lorraine Pascale  

I’ve spoken of Lorraine Pascal before because of her perseverance. She was an orphan who succeeded in modelling and now as a pastry and TV chef. An inspiration for everyone. 
2.Rihanna 

Rihanna makes it here because she is an amazing performer. That’s it. 

1.Eva Kaili

Eva Kaili decided to go from journalist to politician. She is known for championing the plight of the voiceless in her native Greece. 

The above quote goes against the popularity of the Greek far left and also explains the evolution of the neo -Nazi right.  

The above ladies have it all. There are so many more. But more than 10 would make others accuse me of overkill. 

Generalized Anxiety Disorder—The New Killer 

As the above graphic shows,  Anxiety is a plethora of emotions that often come together at the same time. This can create physical symptoms and even cause panic attacks.  Prolonged periods with multiple anxiety symptoms is called Generalized Anxiety Disorder or GAD. In one word,  it can be described as “fear”. It is putting every negative thing under a microscope and every positive thing in the garbage. The focus is almost continually on what disaster may happen next. Here are 8 symptoms to look out for.

When one suffers from GAD,  one of the most popular symptoms is fatigue, followed by indigestion. Irritable Bowel Syndrome or IBS, is related to GAD. Often,  patients given anti -anxiety medication start feeling better and are able to digest more foods without fear of bloating,  inflammation,  or acute pain. 

The above caption demonstrates the ongoing mini panic attack in a person suffering from GAD. These disturbances and thoughts would be less acute or not there at all were the brain not fighting to keep control of the body. The level of peace needed for your brain and body to be in synch disappears and it becomes a free -for -all.  Signals from your brain are mixed up by the body. The result is everyday activities becoming more difficult or almost impossible to do or cope with. A small problem becomes magnified. Despair and helplessness set in. The future seems bleak.  You lose weight. You don’t move much so you don’t bring about a heart attack. You fear fear itself. You shake and feel a cold coming on. Your have heart palpitations.  You can’t assess the importance of things outside your panicked state. This has no  choice but to lead to depression. 

Left untreated, you get worse. You can’t sleep properly. You become irritable and your relationships suffer. You miss work often and are afraid you’ll lose your job. You want to go to the emergency room because you may not wake up alive. Then you get irrational thoughts. You become detached from everyday life. If no help is gotten at this point,  it may be too late. Although it’s anxiety, it has manifested itself into serious depression. And it can and will kill you if you let it. 

Naming the problem and admitting you need help almost always guarantees a road to recovery. The new killer of our era is made possible by the social constructs and constraints holding them up that exist. Every era or generation has its diseases. And a lot of them have become extinct. 

The first step to recovery is to not be afraid or ashamed to admit to yourself and other that you have a problem. Considering the stigma and lack of understanding in general,  it is not advisable to tell people outside your trusted circle of family and friends. You need the help of a doctor. Usually,  it takes a combination of drugs and counseling to see measurable amelioration.  

The second step is to see it to the end and put yourself first. You will learn what the stressors are and will be able to eliminate them or cope healthily with them.  Remember, you are the one in charge. 

In the end, you’ll know you’re a victim of anxiety forever,  just like an alcoholic will always be an alcoholic. Instead of keeping off the booze, you’ll need to just keep yourself in the most optimal shape possible. This includes a healthy diet, proper sleeping habits,  exercise,  and a balance in your lifestyle that promotes positive activity for your brain.  

For me, reliving the moment above helps alleviate tension. What does it for you?