Archive for October, 2010|Monthly archive page

Mind Blowing: Leave Your Mis/Pre-Conceptions at the Door

Logically, I know that if we had to deal with all of the information that the world throws at us, we’d be insane. We are constantly bombarded by so much information that the brain really has no choice – other than insanity – to create little boxes and, in some cases, put people into them. Usually this is an okay strategy. Other times it can lead to misunderstandings and lost opportunities. All too often it can also lead to stigmatization, isolation, prejudice, and discrimination.

I was at a seminar last week to begin the fun and exciting process of becoming a Nuero-Linguistic Programming Practitioner. I have been going to similar seminars over the last year or so, with roughly the same group of people. Sometimes we learn about marketing. Other times we learn about teaching and learning. Once we learned about personality and personality types. Through it all, I’ve made friends with some of the other participants, while remaining aloof or withdrawn from others.

One of women in the latter group, I will call “S”.

S is, there really is no other way to describe it, drop-dead gorgeous. She’s literally one of these women that stops traffic in busy urban centers.

I’ve known her for close to a year. We’d always smile politely from across the seminar room or maybe even exchange pleasantries in the women’s room – me in my slacks and sweaters and her in her revealing dresses, short skirts, mesh tops, and leather boots. (You know, all of the stuff that I don’t have the personality to pull off even if I had the body!) Me with my hair pulled back tightly in the librarian-like bun and hers in a riot of curls that spills around her shoulders in a shockingly tantalizing manner.

Seriously.

Drop. Dead. Gorgeous.

Smoking Hot is another phrase that pops to mind, but I digress.

About two weeks before the last seminar, I got a friend request on Facebook from S and I spent a day (or more) trying to figure out why. I mean, sure, we’d had a couple of meaningless conversations in the bathroom during breaks, but why would she friend me? I mean, seriously, how did she even know who I was, let alone my name. I promptly determined that she had just seen my picture on someone else’s Facebook page and thought, “Why not?”

Feeling a little suspicious – because, after all, why would someone like her want to be friends with someone like me? – I accepted the invitation and assumed that would be the end of it.

A few days later, I posted a picture of myself on a carousal on Santa Monica pier and she commented: “Beautiful.”

I was flummoxed.

Secretly pleased, but flummoxed nonetheless.

During the seminar, I actually worked with S – not just once, but a few times.

We also chatted.

We also had real conversations about things that mattered and gradually I let my guard down.

And I realized that I really liked her and that maybe I had – in my super-judgmental mode – misjudged her.

Towards the end of the conference, she told me that she had always assumed that I would never be interested in talking to/working with/getting to know her because I had so much education and was a professor, whereas she was a massage therapist and had considerably less formal education than I. (Technically, most of the world does, but that’s besides the point!)

I laughed, because I had never once thought about her intellect – as I could never get past her staggering beauty. (Despite the fact that she is quite intelligent!)

Of course, I had to tell her that I always assumed the same thing – that I had been laboring under the illusion that she would never want to talk to/work with/get to know me, because I was so much less attractive than she.

(You know what “they” say about assumptions – they make an ass out of u and me.)

S and I ended up talking a little more until there were so many commonalities in our lives, that I literally burst into tears. And before I knew it I found myself in the arms of a woman who – three months ago – I had been so intimidated by, that I would barely even say hello to her in a public place.

How sad is that?

I am so glad that she decided to reach out to me. And I am very glad to call her my friend – or should I say, my drop, dead gorgeous, smokin’ hot, intelligent friend!

If there’s someone in your life that you are fascinated by but who you think “would never talk to you” for whatever reason – try it.

The worst thing that could happen is that you could be right.

The best thing, however, is that you could make a new friend and come to see them (and yourself) in a different light.

I’ll Take Making Out for 100

And it’s skipping for the win – which makes my inner child very happy!

Forty-one easy ways to burn 100 calories without going to the gym!

Mind Over Matter: The Brain Really Does Control The Body

I have really been struggling with my recent diagnosis of hypothyroidism. Although I realize that it is quite common and easily treatable, I’ve found myself scared, frustrated, and resentful.

Part of this stems from the fact that I had just gotten where I wanted to be physically and then, week by week, I’ve been watching it slip away – not without a fight mind you, but with a fight that seemed pretty darned futile.

I’ve been doing my best to stay positive, but my attention is increasingly drawn to my inability to remember simple words, my ever expanding waist line, the water retention, the lethargy, the depression, the irritability, the increasing irrationality.

In an attempt to retard those frequent trips down the rabbit hole – and in some cases to reverse them all together – I remind myself of all of the things that I am grateful for…a list of things that are really too numerous to recount, but can include such big things as my family and friends or such small things as the warmth of my tea cup in the one hand in which I still have full feeling.

Several of my friends – again, those people for whom I am extremely grateful – tell me that my body will respond to my mind (or more specifically, to my thoughts), thus I should stop saying things like, “hosed,” “toast,” “broken,” “fat,” etc. And although I know that, intellectually, I hadn’t quite got it. Like, really got it. Like, in my body.

This morning, however, I got a glimmer.

As per usual, as soon as I got up, I grabbed my glasses. No big deal there.

But when I looked down at them, I thought they looked funny.

They didn’t look like my glasses.

In fact, I was convinced that they were an old pair. (Did I mention that hypothyroidism is often accompanied by brain fog?)

I was so convinced that these were not my glasses, that when I put them on, I couldn’t see. And I immediately started getting that headache that you always get when you try on someone else’s glasses or have to wear an old prescription.

I went back into the bedroom, turned on the light, searching for my glasses – not sure why I couldn’t find them.

I looked and I looked. I looked under the bed. I looked in the drawer. I looked under the table and under my pillow. They were no where to be seen.

On a whim, I checked my iPhone. (No, I wasn’t that confused.) And I found a recent picture.

And you know what?

Those were my glasses.

My vision immediately cleared up.

And my headache disappeared.

From here on out, I am going to be much more careful about the thoughts that I am directing to my thyroid – not to mention the rest of my body.

And, just as a friendly word of advice, I suggest you think about doing the same.

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