- When you think of a positive lifestyle - what do you imagine?
- Have you ever noticed some people manage to keep going regardless of what happens?
- A healthy and positive lifestyle has nothing to do with looks, money or status although it can make life easier.
- Can you think of one person who never get's things wrong?
- You can develop a positve lifestyle and it can become a habit.
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IN THE NEWS on GlobalCnet
The Post's coronavirus coverage
The latest, 1/25/2021
It's now harder for international travelers to enter the United States. On Monday, President Biden extended and enlarged a travel ban that President Donald Trump had enacted. People who are not U.S. citizens cannot travel from South Africa, Brazil, the U.K., and 26 additional European countries.
The ban applies to most non-citizens who have been in those countries within 14 days. White House press secretary Jen Psaki said this was a “science-driven response” to the worsening spread of the virus, particularly the contagious variants, abroad.
Inside the United States, the vaccine rollout continues. In December, Biden set a target of 100 million shots in 100 days. Based on recent vaccination rates – more than 1 million doses per day over the past six days – vaccinations appear to be on track to meet that goal. But the lack of stock may throttle efforts to go faster.
Vaccine supply is likely to be “the most limiting constraint early on,” said Rochelle Walensky, the new Centers for Disease Control and Prevention director, to Fox News. "We’re really hoping that after that first 100 days, we’ll have much more production."
Meanwhile, in her first interview since ending her role as Trump's pandemic response coordinator, Deborah Birx said he used a “parallel set of data” not made by her team. Birx told CBS she saw graphs and statistics in the president's hands that were different from the ones she had supplied.
In the spring, during the first outbreak, several governors ordered people to stay home. Around the same time, the job market collapsed. But those shutdowns were not the fatal financial blow some said.
New evidence shows the economy was on the decline before those orders as people were already staying in. Stay-at-home orders didn't slay the economy. The virus did.
Other important news
Moderna said Monday its vaccine protects against the new variants, though it's slightly less effective against the South African strain. This announcement follows last week's similar news from Pfizer-BioNTech.
Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador tested positive for the coronavirus and is receiving treatment for his "light" symptoms.
Guide to the pandemic
U.S. vaccine distribution and delivery, tracked by state.
Post reporters are publishing live dispatches nearly 24 hours a day.
Submit a question and we may answer it in a future story or newsletter.
Your questions, answered
“When we say 75 percent effective, does that mean that there is a 25 percent risk of still getting the virus? What exactly does that mean especially as it relates to new strain in South Africa?” — Albert in Texas
We've addressed the difference between efficacy and effectiveness in previous newsletters, but it's going to come up more frequently now that several key variants are spreading around the world.
Efficacy is the number we get from a clinical trial. The Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine has a 95 percent efficacy — it was 95 percent effective at preventing symptoms in the trial. Although there were thousands of people in the trials and the participants went about their days and lived their lives as they normally would, it wasn't quite a “real world” test of the vaccine.
Effectiveness is what happens in the real world. We already know that pregnant women were not included in the trials, but many are choosing to be vaccinated. Some underlying health conditions might not have been well-represented in trial participants. And we know that the racial and ethnic breakdown of the participants didn't quite line up with the current U.S. population.
Now that vaccines are out there in the real world, we're going to start to learn more about their effectiveness. It's possible they really are 95 percent effective. More likely than not, their effectiveness is a bit lower than that.
Neither of these measures can really tell you what is your personal chance of illness. That mostly depends on your exposure, your immune system, and maybe your underlying health conditions.
Efficacy and effectiveness are big average statistics taken across many demographics. The higher numbers are good, but a 95 percent efficacy/effectiveness doesn't translate into a 5 percent risk for you. (For example, someone who works in a hospital's covid-19 unit isn't going to have the same risk as someone who works at home and only leaves to restock the fridge.)
Moving on to the variants: Yes, they throw a wrench into vaccine effectiveness. Moderna announced today that its vaccine triggers an immune response for the U.K. and South Africa variants (good news). But it also said that it wasn't as effective against those strains (not good, but also not terrible news).
The Post's Carolyn Y. Johnson reported that Moderna is launching two new studies to address the variants: One that bumps the two-dose regimen to three and another to test an all-new vaccine specific to the South Africa variant.
Today’s top reads
Find more stories, analysis, and op-eds about the outbreak on our coronavirus page, including:
The PANDEMIC, if only we listened.
How to Live with Certainty in Uncertain Times
What makes a relationship right, or an important decision?
How can you tell if deep spiritual questions have an answer?
As children, we all asked these questions.
They came naturally.
Is there a God?
Do I have a soul?
What happens after I die?
Children are too young to understand that their parents are just as confused as they are.
But the answers are given, and for a time they suffice.
If Grandma went to heaven to be with Grandpa, a child will sleep better and feel less sad.
When you grow up, however, the same questions return.
You can postpone the deeper ones, perhaps, but not in matters of love, relationships, and personal decisions.
Everyone wants to know the answers to those kinds of dilemmas.
And thus you discover that your parents, however well-intentioned, never showed you the way (unless you happen to be one child in a million who had very mature parents who could truly love and
I know I seem to be painting a very large, open-ended picture. But getting into a healthy relationship, discovering whether you have a soul and even picking the right job have something in common.
In all these cases you either hope, believe or know what the answer is. "I hope he loves me enough." "I believe my spouse is faithful." "I know this marriage is solid."
These are very different statements, and we find ourselves awash in confusion because "I hope," "I believe" and "I know" are never the same thing. We just wish they were.
If you will indulge me in sounding so abstract, there's a useful lesson here.
The spiritual path actually has only these three elements.
You move from a state of uncertainty—"I hope?"—to a somewhat firmer state of security—"I believe"—and eventually end up with true understanding—"I know."
It doesn't matter whether the specific issue is about relationships, God or the soul, about the higher self, heaven, or the far reaches of the supernatural. Either you hope, you believe or you
You have already made that journey—many times, in fact.
As a child, you hoped you would be a grown-up. In your 20s, you believed that it was possible.
Now you know you are an adult.
You hoped someone would love you; you believed in time that somebody did, and now you know that they do. If this natural progression hasn't happened, something has gone wrong, because the unfoldment of life is designed to follow from wish to fulfillment.
Of course, we all know the pitfalls.
Divorce generally means you didn't know if someone truly loved you.
Children who grow up resenting their parents usually don't know who to trust.
A hundred other examples could be offered.
But the important thing is to get you back on the path.
Step 1: Realize that your life is meant to progress.
Step 2: Reflect on how good it is to truly know something rather than just hoping and believing. Don't settle for less.
Step 3: Write down, on three separate lists, the things you hope are true, the things you believe are true and the things you know are true.
Step 4: Ask yourself why you know the things you know.
Step 5: Apply what you know to those areas where you have doubts, where only hope and belief exist today.
I believe that when you truly know something, the following things pertain:
You didn't accept other people's opinions.
You found out on your own.
You didn't give up too soon.
You kept exploring despite blind alleys and false starts.
You trusted that you have the power, determination, and curiosity to find out the real truth.
Half-truths left you dissatisfied.
What you truly know grew from the inside.
It made you a different person, as different as two people, one of whom has deeply loved and the other hasn't.
You trusted the process of personal growth.
You aren't afraid of your emotions.
The truth always feels a certain way; uncertainty is queasy and gives off a bad smell.
You went beyond logic into those areas where intuition, insight, and wisdom actually count.
They became real for you.
I would say that these elements are universal.
They apply to the Buddha but also any young person learning how to be in a relationship or finding the right purpose in life.
By dividing the project into its components, the huge questions about life, love, God, and the soul become manageable.
You can work on each ingredient at a time.
Are you prone to accepting secondhand opinions?
Do you have a habit of distrusting your own decisions?
Is love too painful and confusing to explore deeply?
These aren't impossible obstacles.
They are part of you, and therefore nothing can be nearer or more intimate.
Moving from "I hope" to "I believe" to "I know" is nothing less than the journey of life. You don't have to buy a ticket.
As 2020 winds down, I know many of us are yearning for a very small and selective range of life experiences—the happy holidays, the normal times, the settings and experiences that make us feel comfortable.
And yet, the full range of our present reality is quite different.
This year continues to give us an extensive array of experiences that evoke feelings ranging from sadness to struggle to pride to anger to love to loneliness… happiness to hope and more.
These feelings are all part of being a living, breathing human being, regardless of the season of our lives.
So, we can revolt against the unfairness of life—the unfairness of having to deal with pain, having to cope with uncertainty, having to feel lonely and uneasy and upset.
Or we can embrace every experience life gives us, including all our highs and lows—all the blissful moments and painful ones and everything in between.
Life is not just happy and comfortable 24/7. It’s well-rounded, it’s full-featured, and it’s real.
Embracing the full range of life’s experiences this holiday season means embracing every moment with our full presence, being open and vulnerable to reality, being gentle with ourselves when moments are tougher than we expected, and practicing sincere gratitude no matter what happens.
It means accepting life as it is, and accepting ourselves as we are.
It means not expecting the best to happen every step of the way, but instead accepting what happens with each step, and making the very best of it.
This isn’t easy of course, but it’s worth working on, together.
Making Progress into 2021
Yes, the New Year is rapidly approaching.
Let’s make a pact to enter it with a more open, accepting, and resilient collective mindset.
By committing the right ideas and intentions to memory.
Over the past decade, Angel and I have written various “notes to self” like the ones I’ve listed below (all of which are now excerpts from our books), and then we’ve read and re-read them until they became ingrained in our minds.
These memorized “notes to self” help us stay on track, by empowering us to make the best and most effective use of the ever-changing reality in front of us.
I hope YOU find value in them today, too.
And I challenge you to memorize at least a couple of them before the New Year. (Note: For the sake of not being tediously redundant, I only wrote “Note to Self” as a precursor on the first note below.)
Cheers to a New Beginning
Although none of the aforementioned “notes to self” immediately force you to do anything different, they represent a timely shift in perspective, and perspective is where peace and happiness begin.
From there, you can change your posture from one of tension and resistance to one of acceptance and opportunity.
Ultimately, the goal isn’t to get rid of all your negative thoughts, feelings, or life situations as you journey into 2021. The goal is to change your response to them.
The days, weeks, and months ahead—both before and after the New Year—will be filled with incredible highs and stressful lows, for all of us.
But in any case, we can train our minds to make the best of the present moment as it unfolds. Just take it one “note” at a time, and please know that if you’re struggling with any of this, you are not alone.
These invaluable resources are filled with proven guidance on how to do just that. And believe it or not, Angel and I review a lot of our own material on a regular basis too, just to center our minds on these proven principles.
|Creating Connections While Apart|
If you are apart from your family, you can decide upon a reminder together, and create a simple ceremony of connection that defies any distance.
Life's journeys may sometimes take us away from our families and friends, but there are many ways to stay connected. Aside from making use of the technology available--speaking on the phone or
seeing each other from across cyberspace--we can create simple ceremonies using nature and our own thoughts to connect our hearts across the miles.
Making Change Together
Ergonomic Tips for a Home Office
Why I Hired a Life Coach During the Pandemic
Seeking professional guidance during pandemic unemployment has been a lifelineMargot Seeto
When I met an old friend, Freesia, for coffee last year, we had a lot to catch up on — it had been over 10 years since we’d seen each other.
After years in the workforce and earning her MBA, she told me that she was now training to be a life coach. And she needed clients.
Intrigued, I perked up at this news. It just so happened I was in a life stage that could desperately use a life coach. I longed to set and achieve bigger, long-term goals, but my morale felt deflated after rejected job applications and pitches.
I’d spent my career as a journalist and bartender, living in and traveling to dozens of countries along the way. But when my international work visas expired a few years ago, I found myself floundering, flitting in and out of service industry jobs to fund more travels abroad.
I hadn’t been intentionally running away from responsibilities, but inadvertently, I was. I was actively avoiding adulting and planning my life for a few months at a time.
All of these thoughts flashed through my head, and probably out of my mouth.
In response, Freesia offered me pro bono coaching while she was training to be a life coach.
To begin, she encouraged me to start daily meditations and a gratitude journal. I tried not to roll my eyes — this was difficult for me; I’ll admit I saw those practices solely for fragile women whose bible was Eat, Pray, Love. Still, I went along with it, taking months to solidify the habits and understand the benefits of mindfulness and gratitude.
Just as Freesia finished her training and began charging me for official coaching sessions in March, Covid-19 hit, and I lost my job as a caterer in the Bay Area. Luckily, because of my unemployment, Freesia charges me on a sliding scale.
It’s not so expensive that I have to choose between coaching and groceries, but it’s enough to make me take our sessions seriously.
Even though I’m one of many left unemployed due to the pandemic, I fully appreciate the fact that I have the time and funds to hire a professional to guide me through this weird time when many others don’t.
Freesia initially saw a six-month plan for me to get a new job, but when the pandemic caused many companies to go on hiring freezes or move out of state, our approach changed.
Maybe the changes I longed for weren’t going to be as easy or as fast as I had wanted. But it also felt a bit like a blessing in disguise.
I had been wanting to change jobs and return to writing — the pandemic forced me to take action on my dreams when I suddenly no longer had a day job to use as an excuse.
Soon after I was laid off, I got the first official byline I’d had in years in The Bold Italic. It was the boost I needed to feel like a writer again. Since then, some of my work has been in a national publication and curated by Medium editors. One essay inspired a filmmaker friend to make a short documentary, and now we’re working on a longer-term project based on it.
I couldn’t have predicted any of these outcomes. I’m still looking for full-time work and have bigger writing goals, but reminding myself of what I have accomplished is one way to keep the feeling of failure at bay.
Many are using the pandemic for self-reflection, reprioritizing, and looking inward. That often comes in the form of a professional therapist, which is often the right call.
Personally, I’ve found that I enjoy the life coach approach for where I am in my life.
While both coaching and therapy address personal issues, coaching is more goal-oriented, whereas therapy focuses more on how the past manifests itself today.
Freesia does not have a therapy background, but rather 150 hours of life coach training with Co-Active Training Institute and 100 hours of practice.
She said some clients use both coaching and therapy, and she might suggest seeking therapy if a past trauma hasn’t yet been processed.
So far, coaching has worked well for me.
Freesia combines traditional coaching techniques with what she calls “woo woo stuff,” such as meditation and acquiring plants and totems.
When I feel a knot in my chest during a session, she’ll feel one in hers, too. Then she’ll ask me about that knot.
If I start crying (I’ll admit to it), she’ll cry, too. It’s fascinating that she can feel what I’m feeling over Zoom.
A coaching session with Freesia will start with what I’ve accomplished or felt in the time since our last session. She’ll then either ask what I want to work on or make a suggestion.
If I tell her I’m feeling like a writing impostor and my portfolio isn’t growing fast enough, for example, she’ll guide me through visualizations that are literal or metaphorical showing me achieving my goals.
I’ll surprise myself by what comes out of me.
Once I saw myself finding a circle of light in a forest, where a tiny plant was growing.
The plant sprouted a new leaf in each place I touched it.
This plant ended up representing me as a writer. Just because the plant was small did not mean it wasn’t a plant — similarly, not having a bestselling book does not negate my status as a writer.
Each piece I write is a new leaf on the plant.
I return to this visualization whenever I question myself to recover from feelings of inadequacy. Freesia suggested I get an actual plant to represent this idea.
As we’ve built our relationship, Freesia has made me feel comfortable bringing up personal issues, including how I can feel a need to compartmentalize my life — sharing an apartment with my boyfriend is totally separate from caretaking for my hoarder mother. I felt split, secretive, and guilty that I was never doing enough.
I felt selfish in pursuing writing when my parents needed help. Freesia’s exercises help me see that the idea of mental and emotional integration was important to me in feeling at peace.
This peace enables me to serve both myself and my family better.
The epiphanies that used to come to me once a year now come on a regular basis, returning to a place of inspiration more easily and often.
If I feel anxious or blocked, I know I can meditate to get to that place. I know I’ve reached a good decision, big or small if I can suddenly breathe clearly and deeply.
Journaling after a good meditation has helped me make many decisions.
A lot of our worlds have been turned upside down during the pandemic and many of us are uncertain about what to do next. I’m not suggesting a life coach is your answer — it could be traditional therapy, more time for self-care, or something else.
If you’re lucky enough to have the time and means to seek professional help, it can be incredibly helpful to have someone in your corner when our collective ennui feels like too much.
Click on my link below for my Life Coach presentation.
Leaving the Earth a Better Place
It is a great act of love to leave the earth a better place when we leave, than which we found her.
If we enjoy environmental activism, we might feel moved to clean up beaches or to plant trees. But, we need not feel limited in our ability to contribute positively. There are many ways to leave a legacy of love. We might begin by radiating affirmative thoughts and feelings about how magnificent the earth truly is. We might create and tend a special garden, one that provides an abundance of food and herbs for ourselves and our loved ones. Or we might create a garden filled with sweet smelling flowers to uplift our hearts. We might even honor the earth simply by trying to be the best person we can be while we are here. Such good will can have a domino effect, inspiring others to contribute in their own way as well.
We spend our lifetimes being nourished and enlivened by the rain, sun, soil and wind. Our experience is blessed by other living beings, from plants to insects to birds and humans. We receive so much; giving back just naturally feels good. When we live our lives with intention of leaving this temporary home a better place for generations to come, we are perhaps leaving behind the best gift of all.
52 Good Morning Mantras (That Will Change Your Life)
“What day is it?” asked Pooh.
“It’s today,” squeaked Piglet.
“My favorite day,” said Pooh.
Here are 52 morning mantras – one for each week of the year (note: you can start your year of morning mantras anytime you want). I choose one of these mantras every Monday morning and sit quietly for two minutes, repeating it silently in my mind as if I were meditating. I also write it on a post-it note and stick it next to my computer monitor for the duration of the week. This weekly ritual has helped reduce unnecessary stress in my life by reminding me to keep things simple, peaceful and in perspective.
- The secret to being grateful is no secret. You choose to be grateful. Then you do it again and again. Every day. When you forget, begin again.
- If you worry too much about what might be, and wonder too long about what might have been, you will ignore and completely miss what is.
- You don’t know what the future will bring. So your best strategy for living is to make the best and most positive use of the present.
- Two things, more than anything else, define you daily: Your patience when you are struggling, and your attitude when you are not. Read More on the web page.
Pay it Forward - Are you ready to do the world a favour?
What Attracts Mosquitos and How to Repel Them
By Dr. Mercola
Summertime calls most of us to spend time outdoors, but this means we must share our space with mosquitoes. Scientists say that about one in five people are especially appetizing targets for the little bloodsuckers... are you one of them?
Transcending the Flesh
I will not use the shortcomings in this world as an excuse for the shortcomings in me. My path is not to imitate what is wrong, but to lead in what is right. Each positive example I set by actually embodying or being what I believe in improves this world.
I am willing to lead.
-Oprah Winfrey (ITR Daily Meditation)
Moment of Love
To help spread this Moment of Love, click here. And don't miss our collection of inspiring news articles, videos, inspirational resources, and our heart and mind expanding free online courses providing rich inspiration and education. Thanks for taking this moment to invite heartfelt love into our lives and into our world.
Editor’s note: These 21 precepts were just as Miyamoto was giving away all his possessions in preparation for death and I think many of them still apply to our modern society and lifestyles and hence I’m sharing them there.
Accept who you are, know your strengths and weaknesses, don’t over qualify yourself to the world but definitely don’t under estimate your potential. The world and everything in it is truly amazing, see it, explore, make the most of everything; take nothing for granted.
Today: Did I Live?
Did I Love?
Did I Matter?
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