Medicinal qualities of wine…..

21 04 2013

red wine glasses

Do you have feelings of inadequacy? Do you suffer from shyness? Do you sometimes wish you were more assertive?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, ask your doctor or pharmacist about Cabernet Sauvignon.

Cabernet Sauvignon is the safe, natural way to feel better and more confident about yourself and your actions. It can help ease you out of your shyness and let you tell the world that you’re ready and willing to do just about anything.

You will notice the benefits of Cabernet Sauvignon almost immediately and, with a regimen of regular doses, you can overcome any obstacles that prevent you from living the life you want to live.

Shyness and awkwardness will be a thing of the past and you will discover many talents you never knew you had.

Stop hiding and start living.

Cabernet Sauvignon may not be right for everyone. Women who are pregnant or nursing should not use it. However, women who wouldn’t mind nursing or becoming pregnant are encouraged to try it.

Side effects may include: dizziness, nausea, vomiting, incarceration, loss of motor control, loss of clothing, loss of money, loss of virginity, delusions of grandeur, table dancing, headache, dehydration, dry mouth, and a desire to sing Karaoke and play all-night rounds of Strip Poker, Truth Or Dare, and Naked Twister.

* The consumption of Cabernet Sauvignon may make you think you are whispering when you are not.
* The consumption of Cabernet Sauvignon may cause you to tell your friends over and over again that you love them.
* The consumption of Cabernet Sauvignon may cause you to think you can sing.
* The consumption of Cabernet Sauvignon may create the illusion that you are tougher, smarter, faster and better looking than most people.

Please feel free to share this important information with as many as you feel may benefit!

Now, just imagine what you could achieve with a good Shiraz…

Chill Pill

22 12 2011

Need I say more?

Reasons I should be exercising…

21 08 2011

(instead of sitting immobile in front of the computer screen)

1. OK starting with the obvious – fitness. This will not prevent me breaking this down into other factors later in this list.

2. Weight loss. My very enthusiastic GP sent me to a variety of very expensive specialists recently. Each said there was nothing wrong with me that losing 20kgs wouldn’t fix. I bit my tongue and refrained from saying “Thanks – I knew that when I walked in. Here’s several hundred dollars for stating the obvious.” These people have very expensive degrees. However, message received.

3. Brain fitness. A recent study by Michelle W Voss from the University of Illinois (Journal of Applied Psychology) has linked exercise with improved mental performance in multitasking, planning and inhibition (not sure whether the latter is a good thing or not). Also good for memory and alertness.

4. Stress relief. Again, going for the obvious. Burning off that excess energy resolves the “fight or flight” adrenaline and other hormone build-up associated with stress.

5. So I can eat all the chocolate I want. Or maybe decrease my cravings for chocolate, as my stress levels will be lowered. Ditto for alcohol, and sugars in general. Seriously though – as well as the calories burned off by exercise, having a higher muscle:fat ratio means more energy is burned off by basic metabolism. Fat does not burn calories.

6. Preventing osteoporosis. Strength training has been shown to prevent bone loss. I am not in the high risk age group for bone loss, but let’s get in early.

7. So the rest of my body can be as fit as my fingers (which are regularly exercised on the keyboard). OK – slightly facetious, but my fingers get a lot of exercise.

8. For mood enhancement. Exercise has been shown to elevate the mood through the production of endorphins. A psychiatrist friend used to take his patients on what he called “circle therapy” where he literally conducted therapy as they walked around the oval. Can’t hurt for the rest of us.

9. Vitamin D. OK, so this is a little bit of a long bow to draw, but with our sun-avoidance as a result of skin-cancer scares, many people are Vitamin D deficient. This can affect nerve health and mood. A little bit of exercise outside, particularly when it isn’t really sunny, is a good thing.

10. Energy levels. As with many things in life, it is a “use it or lose it” proposition with energy levels and fitness. The more energy you expend, the more you get. This one also includes increased mental and physical stamina.

11. Better sleep. Providing you don’t exercise just before sleep. A fit healthy body that has expended a reasonable amount of energy, is much more likely to sleep well.

12. To stave off various types of chronic disease and risk factors. Yes, yes, BORING. But cholesterol, heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes. I am sure there should be an etcetera there. Sigh.

13. For better self-image. Yes, a fit and taut body would make me feel better about myself.

14. Apparently the above will all give me a better sex life. Enough said.

15. Increased life expectancy. As little as 15 minutes exercise every day can increase life expectancy by three years. More exercise = more benefit. And if you add onto that staving off chronic disease and osteoporosis, it should be a healthier three years as well.

16. Reduced cancer risk. The strongest links seem to be with reduced risk of breast cancer, but lower weight is also associated with a lower risk of bowel cancer and other cancers. The link with reducing breast cancer risk is to do with lower levels of specific hormones associated with developing breast cancer – and the risk reduction can be up to 60%. That’s pretty significant.

17. To beat infectious disease. The evidence is, I believe, a little shaky, but a fitter body means a stronger immune system, means overcoming infectious disease. Can’t hurt.

18. To save my joints. Losing weight through increased fitness will both take the strain off my joints (particularly knees, hips and ankles) and also support the joints with muscle mass. Win-win.

19. To travel the world. A school-friend just FB’d a message that she had started training for the Angkor Wat half-marathon. What a great reason to travel there! I don’t care if I come last, I want to run in the Paris marathon that finishes at the Arc de Triomphe. I am sure there are many other places I could run – and sightsee and shop! Anyone wanna join me?

Roaring….with laughter

15 07 2011

I am told I have a loud laugh. When I go on holidays, that is what the office notices – it’s suddenly quiet. (I like to flatter myself that they miss other things as well, but somehow this is what is commented on.)

I laugh at lots of things. Often, I laugh at myself. I laugh at my reactions to various things that happen around the office – “wins”, setbacks, frustrations, mistakes and miscommunications. I laugh if something is amusing. I laugh if something takes me by surprise. I laugh in staff meetings when we report back on some of the funny things that happen in our workdays, some of the strange problems I get to deal with (currently I have a sunken boat I need to get raised – so far out of my prior field experience, it seems bizarre to contemplate). I laugh at the differences in perceptions between myself and others – we all come from our own point of view and the difference between those perspectives is often enormous.

All in all, humour works very well for me. I hope the office understands that they can talk to me about pretty much anything. If I explode it will be with laughter, and then we can sit down and work our way through the problem. Laughter is the best medicine, as they say.

I now have a PA who (as well as having an excellent can-do attitude and being very talented) has a very loud laugh and laughs often. We have become a very noisy end of the office. I don’t think that is a bad thing. The sound of laughter, even if you aren’t in on the joke, sets a pleasant tone, cutting through tensions and underlining that you can enjoy your time at work, even when you are under pressure. People want to be here and they want to work here. Why would you want to work somewhere where everyone is miserable?

We use humour in our staff newsletters. As well as valuing incidental humour such as in staff profiles (which they write themselves), we also have jokes and brain-teasers interspersed with the more serious aspects of the newsletter. Hopefully that not only sets the tone for the entire newsletter, but keeps people reading.

I should be clear that none of the laughter is mean. We aren’t laughing at others, and we have an appropriate seriousness with the sad and bad things we sometimes have to deal with in the human services field. We occasionally laugh at our reaction to others and to events, but not at people, clients or staff. The laughter is underpinned by a compassionate view of the world.

And so a study from the University of Kent that found that positive reframing using humour also had beneficial effects on satisfaction comes as no surprise. Positive morale is good for developing a self-motivated cohesive team. But it is also a quality issue. Positive morale is linked to good judgement – decision making.

So maybe one of the most important things I can do at work is develop a positive team morale. As well as making it a more pleasant place for staff, it is so much more enjoyable for me to go to work there as well.