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A Wake Up Call.. | TragedyandHope

25 Sep

I have not posted in a while. I have spent my summer walking the Camino across Northern Spain. It  was beautiful and I wanted to share this with You regarding our beautiful world.

A Wake Up Call.. | TragedyandHope.

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Wake Up! to the sound of nothing

18 Feb

Doolin wavesLast week I was so lucky to have a couple of days to myself. I decided to drop in on one of my favourite places in the world Doolin, Co Clare. Specifically to the Rainbow hostel where Carmel and Mattie Shannon provided  warm and welcoming hospitality in their homely hostel.

The real reason I was down was to buy a Surfboard and catch some surfing in nearby Lahinch. I managed to get the surfing in which was a beautiful Wake Up! while enjoying thew February Atlantic. As the Danish say “There is no such thing as bad weather, just the wrong clothes“.

I never purchased the Surfboard as the surf assistants unwillingness to haggle cost him a sale. Even a 5% token discount would have got him a happy customer and a sale at a time of the year when things are slow. Not great business sense …but there you go.

The two days down by the Atlantic where so therapeutic. Surfing by day and watching the waves crash against Doolin pier  and surrounding rocks at high tide each evening was a form of meditation. As I walked up the country road to the hostel at night the sky provided the clearest views of the stars that I had ever seen. Beautiful and silent with just the sounds of the crashing Atlantic in the distance as I walked. Inside Carmel’s hostel the log stove in the front room provided warmth in a room filled with nothing but the wind from outside as I sat reading and connecting with the wonderful stillness of the present moment.

The experience that you get in the Rainbow hostel is not found in any Hotels that I have visited. maybe it’s the warm welcome from Carmel the scones in the morning or just the simple solitude. Whatever it is it works.

Nature is beautiful yet we rarely make enough connections with it as we fleetingly move from distractions to distractions that never provide lasting imprints on our memories. As the world turned and the Pope abdicated while share prices rose and fell and rose again none of this seemed to matter as the silence and pleasure of the now in a small remote town on the western coast of Europe took over.

Happy Days.

Happiness Is Contagious

18 Oct

Happiness feedback

Some days are better than others and some weeks follow the same vein. The past few weeks have ben filled with wonderful positivity and happiness from the Happiness Workshop at Mental health week to the inspiring programmes with Teens from Carlow Vocational school and Colaiste Eoin Hackettstown.

There was something Magical about the three weeks just spent with 5th and 6th class kids that was so heartwarming.We talked about all the things we loved about life and what and who we were grateful for. We also looked at how wonderful we unique every single one of us is. The response from the kids was filled with enough sunshine to warm a Spanish Summers day . The goodbye that I was given from the St Patricks 5th class through an archway of joined hands and cheers like a newly married couple experience leaving a wedding will stay with me forever.

All that I can say is it is so true….Happiness is contagious. The wonderful feedback from all the kids involved was a testament to the awesomeness of our existence. Pictured above is proof that yes….Happiness is spreading.

Lessons for Living- Wow! your world

12 Sep

As Summer comes to a close we can feel a drop in the temperature in the mornings. This is a time of year that I love. You can almost feel the change of the seasons in the air like a clearing or a cleansing.

I love the Summer but there is something wonderful about accepting and welcoming the Autumn. We are lucky in this part of the world to experience seasons. Four times a year we get to welcome change and that is good.

It is a times like this that I really appreciate summer. We may have not had the driest or warmest of summers but what can you do. We live on a rocky green Island in the North Atlantic ocean it’s never going to be the Maldives. You have to learn to adapt and we are good at adapting.  The Atlantic seas of West Kerry and Clare this summer were full of people in wet suits swimming, surfing and jumping through waves in temperatures and weather conditions most people wouldn’t consider leaving the house in. We have realized it is cold in the Atlantic. Yet we are blessed with beautiful beaches and surf how can we spend longer in the water simply purchase a wet suit and the day is yours.

The people of Iceland always amaze me too. If we think we have it bad in Ireland just look at Iceland. A volcanic, treeless rock in the far northern Atlantic ocean,with dark cold winters and not very warm grey summers.

Yet Icelanders have a great outlook to life. They recognize that where they live is exactly what I stated but they understand that it is their home and they accept that they cannot change it. Iceland is another country that rates quite highly on the happiness index. Many of them call it the “Beast” because of Iceland’s strange but wondrous beauty.

Icelanders do not spend time thinking about where else they could be. They live with what they have. Icelanders read more books than any other population in the world. They have a keen interest in the arts with at least 87 music schools. Not bad for a population of 320,000. They are also blessed with the highest birth rate in Europe. So you can see they keep busy in the cold winter months rather than twiddling their thumbs looking out at the snow.

The happiest countries in the World, Denmark, Norway, Finland and Sweden are all harsher countries than most to survive in (just ask the Vikings) but have an abundance of people who love where they live.

Where am I going with this.Life is all about appreciating what you have and what is around you. Something we fail to do for most of waking lives. One thing I love to do on my courses is a WOW! walk. Here we take 10 or 15 minutes with the group and go out into nature and look at our world with a positive lens. We point out all the wonderful scents we might have normally failed to notice or the colours of a church stained glass window or flowers in a garden. We look at architecture in a different light and even the sky seems more beautiful not matter what shade of colour it is.

Autumn provides us with beautiful colours and a chance to prepare for the winter and bright clear beauty that it often provides.

No matter where you live it’s the mindset of the Irish in wetsuits surfing the winter seas or the Icelanders singing their way to happiness that will transform your view of the world you currently inhabit.

What should you do!. Embrace were you live and take a WOW walk at least once a week,allowing you to embrace…. rather than run from the wonderful changing seasons and world you live in.

Lessons for living- Wake Up! To You!

7 Sep

The most important person in your life is guess who? You!!
Remember that old adage if you can’t look after yourself than what good are you other people.
Traveling on airplanes we are always told that if the flight encounters trouble always apply your oxygen mask first before you tend to your kids.
Sounds selfish doesn’t it.
It’s the exact opposite, if you can’t breathe you are hardly going to be able to have the energy required to help your children when they need you most.
This is the same for all relationships that you encounter. If you don’t take care of yourself the relationship will be affected adversely on some level.
If you find it difficult to love yourself you will ultimately find it difficult to love someone else because you find fault within yourself and cannot understand how someone could love someone you don’t love yourself.Eventually you will slowly dismantle your relationship through feelings of unworthiness. Weird isn’t it!
If through abuse of your health you find that you struggle to be the parent your child would love you to be then make a conscious change.

What do you do then?
Spend some time on you and then you will be surprised how people around you react to the new confident you.

  • Think of one thing that you always wanted to do in life but you where afraid to do ?
  • Ask yourself if life had no obstacles such as time or money or commitments what is the one thing that you would love to do?
  • Commit to spending time on whatever it is that you would love to do.

If you spent twice a week concentrating on this dream. You would be guaranteed a different outlook to your life within a year or less. We are only truly happy when we spend time on activities and pleasures that make our heart sing. As my last post 5 regrets to avoid told us it is too late in the last stages of our lives to discover we regret having spent so much time on activities that we never enjoyed. Happiness is a choice it is up to you to decide if you want it.

“Life should be fun. Happiness should flow freely”

Wake up! to You!

Lessons for living – Connections

14 Aug

The one contributor to unhappiness in later life is the loss of connections with other people.

As we get older social connections can be more difficult to maintain.  Friends move in and out of our lives or pass away. We retire and miss the camaraderie we experienced with our workmates or the interactions with our customers. We look at our partners and wonder what connection we had all those years ago.

We lose touch with what matters… Other people.

We know that having social connections is a strong predictor of our health.

What is the key: we need to get involved in social networks  and meaningful roles. All life needs a purpose. Volunteering is a good way to participate in a positive way. We feel better when we contribute to helping others and giving something back.

Being isolated when you reach old age is not good for us. Remember this when you are moving through your life. Connecting with others is the one thing that us as humans yearn for. I see the importance of this constantly in my programmes. Be mindful as you slowly discard relationships that were once important to you in life.

Link

Twelve hours that will change your life.

20 Apr

Twelve hours that will change your life.

Wake up recommends This programme run by Aware Ireland  who will be running this programme throughout Carlow/Kilkenny in May for 6 week programmes. It is for anyone who might feel they need a little lift in life. I will keep you posted on dates and venues here.

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