With acknowledgement and respect for those who walked this country originally, and to the custodians who continue to take care of this country on many levels. Acknowledging with respect elders past, present, and emerging, thank you for your wisdom. To my ceremony sisters and brothers, thank you for walking with me and sharing your wisdom and love for this country and all peoples and beings of earth, water, fire and air.
Spirited Living, Loving and Leading.
When I was a young mother of three teenage sons, I remember making a mind shift that changed my life completely. I was standing in the kitchen looking at the mess and feeling like I was going to explode. The kids had gone through it like a tornado, and there was barely a free space on the bench to be seen. While listening to them playing Marco Polo in the pool outside, laughing and having great fun, I could here two voices in my head. One came from my wounded heart, my mother’s voice. This was The Nagging Mother, and she persisted in letting everyone know the trouble and hard work they were causing. The other was the voice of the true heart, The Joybringer, and she said, “Listen to your sons. They are having so much fun. Fun you were never allowed to have. Let them be in peace and enjoy this moment. In fact, why don’t you simply enjoy every moment from now on. Be grateful. Stay present, let go of the anxiety and get on with whatever you have to do, one task at a time. Show your sons how to enjoy living and doing the small and big things in life. This is your chance to set yourself free. Do it differently. Smile.”
In that moment I chose to listen to the Joybringer, and my life completely changed. I opened a new door and travelled down a wonderful path of freedom. No longer chained to old beliefs, habits, and attitudes, I decided to clean up the kitchen because I loved having a clean kitchen. When I finished, I moved round the rest of the house and cleaned it with love until it was shining. When my sons came in I hugged each one and resisted all urges to tell them what I had done. They never once saw me complain about housework again.
My mother came to visit soon after, and noticing I was doing everything to clean up she nagged me about not getting my sons to help. I smiled and thanked her for caring about me and explained to her I was doing it differently for a while to see how things went. I took every opportunity to thank my sons when they did something to help, and continued my positive attitude around the home. They noticed, and they began to help more often. Soon they were taking care of their own space more carefully and we were a much happier family. My sons didn’t have a father around to help pull them into line, and yes, it could have gone pear shape. It was a risk to take, but a risk that paid off. I taught my sons how to enjoy taking care of your home without resentment or expectation of thanks for everything you do for others, and taking responsibility for valuing in what you did for yourself. I modelled how to manage your energy respectfully, how to bring love and light through being present and grateful, and how to love freely – without expectation, altruistically. And they watched and learned. Now my two older sons are in their early thirties and both have children. Their wives have thanked me for raising them the way I did, and I watch them sharing the house duties with love and without stress, feeling so grateful for that day in the kitchen when I finally learned how to live, love and lead with spirit – with grace and joy. Graceful action is now my motto.
8 Steps to Freedom:
1. Walk strongly and gracefully in your truth.
2. Know yourself well – within past, present, and future landscapes.
3. Stand in your power and trust in your journey.
4. Bring joy at every opportunity.
5. Be present at all times – to yourself, with time, and within the spaces you live.
6. Keep your heart open no matter what.
7. Trust in your dreams.
8. Know why it is worth the effort to live, love, and lead with spirit.
For further guidelines for living loving and leading in a spirited way, follow this link to The 8 Ways.
Personal Sessions & Professional Workshops
Wellness Workshops are held regularly at Neutral Bay Health and Wellbeing Centre to address stress and promote wellbeing in personal and professional spaces.
The next wellness wednesday will be held in August. Please express your interest by entering your details below at the bottom of this page.
Topic For August:
Understanding and managing workplace and relationship stress in daily life.
An evening to discuss Being Present and the Pathways to Freedom. We will discuss what gets in the way of this, particularly Presenteeism, what it is, and how it is affected by stress relating to a lack of physical, mental, emotional and spiritual health and wellbeing.
Workshop - Personal Development:
August 30, Sunday 9.15am - 1.30pm.
Neutral Bay Health and Wellbeing Centre.
Cost: $80. Earlybird Special $60 when paid by 19.08.15. Bring a friend for $20.
Numbers strictly limited.
Living, Loving and Leading in a Spirited Way,
with Heather Price.
A morning of Self-reflection, restoration, and clear visioning.
· Being Present: to yourself, with time, and with the people and spaces your live and work in.
· An introduction to CALM meditation and Creative Visualisation through a shamanic drum journey to guide a daily practice of self-care and self-responsibility. CALM is acronym for: Confidence through creative focus, Action as a commitment to change and growth, Loving Kindness as a means of creating and sustaining fulfilling relationships, and Mindful awareness.
Shamanic technologies to strengthen your identity and direction in life, and to commit to change, guided by The 8 Ways, Shamanic Guidelines for walking confidently and consciously in the world.
Integrative Practice Training Days are run in Sydney and Brisbane for professionals interested in adding shamanic technologies to address causes of Presenteeism and other conditions preventing psychological, spiritual, emotional and mental health and wellbeing to their toolboxes. There are training days planned for September and there will be more information released in the near future. Please make contact by registering your interest in the space provided at the bottom of this page. Thank you.
Individual Shamanic Healing Practitioner Training
Available in Sydney only. Interstate trainees welcome with customized training available.
What is Presenteeism?
In Personal and Professional Spaces.
Presenteeism is a state of being present physically, but not able to contribute to your full potential due to the distraction of poor physical and psychosocial health. Psychosocial health can have a myriad of meanings, however the definition most relevant and preferred here is the state of mental, emotional, social, and spiritual well being when influenced by social and psychological factors, which in turn affect physical wellbeing, and vice-versa.
Medibank Private insurance commissioned research found that presenteeism costs the Australian economy $34.1 billion in 2009/10 and, on average, 6.5 working days of productivity are lost per year per employee due to this state. It is not only the workplace that suffers from the effects of presenteeism. Interpersonal relationships, and one’s own self-confidence in more personal spaces is also affected by not being able to switch off busy thoughts and concerns, and be more present and attentive in the moment of ‘now’.
As you will be well aware, workplace performance and interpersonal relationships, and one’s health, can be severely affected by well-known concerns such as:
· Job dissatisfaction and fear of one’s future employment, with current workplace trends show technology is steadily overtaking manual and cognitive labour.
· The housing situation and financial obligations are a major cause of stress, with the average household debt now being $79,000 per person in Australia.
· Rising threats to wellness such as obesity, and its related issues, which in 2008 was estimated to cost the economy as much as $58 billion .
· Mental health issues are now reported, in one form or other, as a concern for 3 million people in Australia, a rise of 4% since 2001.
· Grief and loss, and relationship break down, or loneliness.
· Loss of identity due to feelings of displacement and not belonging, and lack of direction, uncertainty, and purpose.
· Challenging situations with children and young people.
· Substance misuse, or family members with substance issues.
With these and hundreds of other stressors of one kind or another, it is little wonder that Presenteeism is of such a major concern in economic, inter-personal relationship, and health arenas. Now more than ever it is essential to stay on top of things with self-awareness and self-care, and at times this means reaching out to professionals who can assist you onto the path of wellness and wellbeing that is best for you.
Turning To Nature to Manage Stress
The notion of biophilia, and the benefits that people may experience through their connection with nature, in a variety of ways, and the consequences of this on presenteeism:
Stress has an impact on our bodies in many ways, physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. We have inbuilt mechanisms to assist us to respond to stress, and to assist us to survive. There is a school of thought that nature itself was a natural mechanism to manage the aftermath of stress, and that mankind still has an innate tendency to turn to nature to rapidly lower stress levels restore health and well being. If these stress levels are not lowered after episodes of stress, the tension builds up and causes an over load on the system, with potential damage to exhaustion. Sitting in nature, climbing, touching, or sitting in a tree, smelling or picking flowers, touching the earth, bushwalking, swimming in natural waters, observing, talking to or playing with an animal, cloud-watching, breathing fresh air, the beauty of nature are all natural and familiar ways to restore us to health. This natural, innate tendency to turn to, relate and connect with nature, once as a means for survival, and certainly as a way to restore health and well being, is known as biophelia. One man who has researched and personally explored this in depth is Harvard educated biologist, philosopher and prize-winner science writer Edward O. Wilson. The Oxford dictionary refers to theories by Wilson in its description of biophelia as being “an innate and genetically determined affinity of human beings with the natural world”.
While most people appreciate the restorative qualities of nature, it is not always a simple matter to easily find nature in the city. Green hubs and greening of buildings with roof and vertical garden, parks and nature strips are an attempt to provide this service. However, it is not always convenient. Keeping pets is another way, and taking pets to work, pets in schools and aged care is becoming more common. When it is not possible to get into nature to restore health naturally, there are natural therapies available to assist in this process. Creative visualization, or journeys into innerworlds, can be used to take you into an imaginative world where you can connect with nature. Traditional teachers and healers understand this well and meditation and shamanic journeys have been used as tools to manage stress and restore wellbeing for thousands of years.
1. Medibank Private Health Insurance Report (2009/10): Presenteeism.
2. Price-Waterhouse (2015) Pulse on Robotics: Cite Oxford university as predicting as many as 47% of jobs in USA being replaced by robots by 2034. http://www.pwc.com/en_GX/gx/ceo-survey/pulse/robotics.jhtml?WT.mc_id=cs_gx-hero-home_CEO-robotics.
3. Australian Bureau of Statistics (2014) 4102.0 - Australian Social Trends, 2014Total household debt stood at $1.84 trillion at the end of 2013, equivalent to $79,000 for every person living in Australia at that time. http://www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs@.nsf/Lookup/4102.0main+features202014
4. Australian Bureau of Statistics (2013) 4125.0 - Gender Indicators, Australia, OVERWEIGHT/ OBESITY http://www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs@.nsf/Lookup/4125.0main+features3330Jan%202013
5. Australian Bureau of Statistics (2011-13) 4338.0 - MENTAL AND BEHAVIOURAL CONDITIONS. Profiles of Health, Australia. Mental and behavioural conditions in the Australian Health Survey comprise a range of organic and psychological conditions such as dementia, depression, substance use and anxiety disorders. In 2011-12 there were 3.0 million Australians (13.6%) who reported having a mental and behavioural condition, an increase from 11.2% in 2007-08 and 9.6% in 2001.
6. Louv, Richard (2012, The Nature Principle”. Reconnecting with Life in a Virtual Age. (p.p. 53 – 54). Pub: Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA.
7. Oxford Dictionary Online
On Line Assistance Now:
For more information on personal and professional workshops please send your enquiry here, including the city or town you live in, and your mobile phone number. Thank you.