Well, I can hardly believe it is May already; it seems as if I was just putting Christmas stuff away.
But, with May we have Spring, life, new beginnings, energy, Taurus, May Day and Beltane. It seems to me that with May you can feel life bursting out all around you. I’m living now in a slightly more rural area than I was and there are birds everywhere building nests and singing. With this surge of new life and activity, I thought it might be fun to first of all give you a bit of information and a resource to find out more about the pagan celebration of Beltane (it’s a fun one) and then maybe talk a little bit about Aries and Taurus individuals.
In the health section, we are going to be dealing with weight and nutrition and getting in shape because May also starts to remind us of sun and warm weather which means not only swimming suit season, but lighter more revealing clothing. Besides, Spring and May are ideal times to re-evaluate our lives a bit, maybe make a few healthy changes, changes that can give us a new beginning.
“It is Beltane! The Earth softens under the caress of the sun and all the world is new. We emerge from the darkness of a long, difficult winter; our eyes drink in rolling green hills budding branches and tender shoots. We breathe deeply the fresh fragrance of radiant blossoms. We have survived!” — from www.circlesanctuary.org where you can find out more if you are interested.
And now for a bit of astrology:
Aries (the first sign the Zodiac and representing the astrological new year) are noted for courage and leadership qualities, primarily because they are always ready for action. The need for excitement pushes them into new territory. Aries fight for what they believe to be important.
Aries would rather figure out what to do while they are doing it than learn how to in advance. Impulsive actions though can bring a whole pile of trouble. Aries have to watch out for the tendency to move on to the next project before completing the previous one.
As a fire sign they are naturally warm. A fire gives light and heat, but it doesn't get depleted as others feed on its warmth. One candle can bring light to a room and it won't burn any faster if ten people read from its light than if there was only one. Fire doesn't plan it next move; it isn't logical. It simply is in the moment and will burn what fuel is available without judgment or forethought. For this reason fire signs can successfully rely on their intuition and survival instincts but they also need to be careful that they don’t burn out their companions.
The fire of Aries is spontaneous and hot. It's like a pile of dry kindling that burns fast but cannot sustain itself for the long haul making it difficult for the youthful Aries to make long lasting commitments. With maturity, however, can come an understanding of this tendency and the ability to make a commitment that is long lasting.
The second sign of the Zodiac. Their characteristics are solidity, practicality, extreme determination and strength of will - no one will ever drive them, but they will willingly and loyally follow a leader they trust or the person they love. They tend to be stable and balanced.
Mentally, they are keen-witted and practical more often than purely intellectual, but apt to become fixed in their opinions. Their character is generally dependable, steadfast, prudent, just, firm and unshaken in the face of difficulties. If I had to fight an injustice, there is no one I would rather have stand beside me than a Taurean.
Taureans are faithful and generous friends with a great capacity for affection. They are gentle, even tempered, good natured, modest and slow to anger, disliking quarrels and avoiding ill-feeling. If they are provoked, however, they can explode into violent outbursts of ferocious anger in which they “seem” to lose all self-control. Along with their taste for all things beautiful is a love for the good things of life: pleasure, comfort, luxury and good food and wine and they may have to resist the temptation to over indulgence.
Taureans are more than averagely amorous and sensually self-conscious, but sexually straightforward and not given to experiment. They make constant, faithful, home loving spouses and thoughtful, kindly parents, demanding neither too much of their spouses or children. No other sign in the zodiac is closer to earth and that grounded and natural than a Taurus.
I have been blessed with the best clients in the world; and when you read this you’ll understand why I say that:
“Thank you so much Linda! I had hypnosis before in a real life session but your downloads far surpass my last experience. Your downloadable sessions have helped me so much. Changing my life. Thank you so much for everything I'll be back for more!! I believe a lot more good things will happen now that I’m letting go of my resistance to good things (something I didn’t even realize I was doing until I found your site & sessions) so I'll write back soon to let you know how I am. — AK”
I’ve been working myself on “allowing” all that I want and need in my life for some time now (it has always been the hardest thing for me) and I think it is working because just when I need it most, the Universe and my clients choose to send me encouragement. This got me thinking about how we all need encouragement sometimes, no matter how confident, secure or successful we may be (and how few of us really are); we all need to hear positive encouraging statements.
... and that is the perfect segue to this month’s article.
Linda Simmon, C.Ht.
Sticks and Stones ...
By Linda Simmon
I’m sure you’ve heard that childhood saying “sticks and stones may break my bones but words can never hurt me”. WRONG!
Words have power. Words have so much power that they can destroy reputations and ruin lives.
For those of you who have lived in an emotionally abusive situation, you know that as strange as it may sound, it is frequently easier to deal with physical abuse than it is the words that are said during an emotional attack. We heal from physical injuries, but the wounds that are created by hearing hurtful words (especially when those words come from a loved one) stay with us for years eating away and corroding our self-image, self-confidence, causing us to doubt ourselves and our decisions. Forcing us to second guess every thing we do and say.
You can image how difficult living a life like this can be, but you can take back control and you can reverse much of the damage that was done. You can decide that you are not going to be a victim. Sound too easy? The truth is that it is actually easier than you might believe.
The first step is to acknowledge how strong you really are. You had to be strong. You had to be amazing to live through all that crap that made you feel like a victim in the first place and to keep on going.
The child who survives abuse is amazingly self-reliant and strong. The woman who has come out of a nasty, bad relationship and can keep on going is powerful beyond belief. The man who came from a loveless home and can continue to search for the right relationship and woman to love is strong and sensitive with a big, beautiful heart and so much love to give. And there are hundreds and thousands of stories just like those that show us, each of us, just how powerful we are if we are willing to accept that power and that strength.
The second step is to take control of your thoughts.
Science has given us the capability of being able to look at and in the human brain while it is working and to actually see how it is functioning. We are able to watch what happens to the brain as we think different thoughts and visualize different images. Science has taught us that just as we can develop any muscle in our body by “using” it, by working it, so can we develop neuro pathways within the mind. It is along these neuro pathways that all thoughts and emotions travel.
You know because I say it over and over again, think a negative thought constantly and you develop a neuro pathway for that negative thought that becomes larger, wider and stronger each and every day, eating up those smaller neuro pathways that you have allowed to atrophy and that are unfortunate enough to reside nearby. The same holds true for what you hear. This is why “words” do have so much power.
If you are around someone constantly who criticizes you or berates you or even worse, it becomes even more important for you to counteract those words with thoughts that you control. For every negative thought or image that either comes into your mind or is forced into your mind, take the time to take back control and think 100 times more about your hopes, dreams and desires. [Please remember hypnosis is probably the best, most enjoyable and fastest way to do this.]
Take the time to remember each and every good thing that has happened to you throughout the day, but not only that, throughout your life entire life. Think and dream about your future. Take the time and allow your desires to flow through you.
Also, I’d be negligent here if I didn’t at least throw this out there. If you are with someone who is abusing you in any way, leave. Remove yourself from that situation and run as far and fast as you can. I know when you are beaten down it is hard to see any options other than the one you find yourself in. But you are wrong. There are options out there and there are people and organizations that can help you get away. Make some calls, find out what you can do, call out for help, someone will answer. But most of all, keep your thoughts strong. Your life depends on it
After all, what do you have without you? You need to preserve the miracle that is you. As a matter of fact, this planet needs you, your talent, intelligence and compassion.
And for each of us, please take the time to think about what you are saying to your child, wife, husband, lover, friend before you utter those hurtful words that can never be taken back. Once said they are out there forever. Saying you are sorry doesn’t counteract the damage that was done in an instant of self-gratification. And that’s what venting to another is; don’t ever delude yourself that it is anything more than self-gratification. Vent when you are alone, scream and yell and swear all you want. But when you are with someone you care about, think before you speak because despite that childhood saying — words can hurt you.
Linda Simmon, C.Ht.
It’s the Least You Can Do
Exactly how little can you do and still get fit? A new study suggests 1.7 might be the magic number. Middle-aged men and women at risk for heart disease who walk at a moderate pace for just 1.7 miles a day improve several important measures of their aerobic fitness.
Ok, we admit it. The data show that jogging at full speed for nearly 3 miles a day reaps the greatest cardiovascular benefits. But if jogging shorts and running shoes aren't your style— or you're just feeling kinda tired today—at least get yourself out there for 1.7 miles. It's still enough to keep you on the road to better fitness. Going slower doesn’t always mean that you'll lose the fitness race. Here are some other ways to keep yourself in the game when you feel like throwing in the towel:
- Slow it down. You don't have to keep up with that marathon runner.
- Take a breather. Right in the middle of your workout.
- Break it up. Can't pull together 30 minutes of exercise? Grab 10 minutes in the morning, 10 minutes at lunch, and 10 minutes after dinner. Done.
- Don’t Diet! Here’s Why . . .
If you've tried every calorie-restricting diet out there but still can't keep the weight off, there's a reason: Diets don't work. Over time, the majority of dieters regain any weight they may have lost, according to researchers who pored over a slew of diet studies recently. So instead of counting calories—Eat for Good Health.
The concept that you can permanently shrink yourself by temporarily eating less is mostly bunk -- for most of us. In fact, the health benefits of short-term weight loss still need to be closely examined. Instead, your goal should be to eat nutritious foods that make you younger -- and make that a lifelong habit. The good news? Your waist may shrink as a fringe benefit.
Kick-start your lifelong healthy-eating habits with these tips:
- Focus on your waist, not your weight.
- Eat three main meals, plus snacks, so you're never hungry.
- Don't buy anything with more than 4 grams of saturated fat or 4 grams of any sugar (especially high-fructose corn syrup) per serving.
- Strive for a rainbow of colors in your meals. [This is my personal favorite and it works!!]
- Eat a little healthy fat -- like a handful of walnuts -- about 20 minutes before a meal. It will take the edge off, so you won't be tempted to overeat.
- Eat a fiber-rich breakfast every day.
- Walk every day for 30 minutes.
- All About YOU: Yo-ga! Yo-ga! Yo-ga!
These days, yoga gets more love than whoever’s starring in The Bachelor. And for good reason. Yoga reduces blood pressure, lowers heart rate, decreases stress hormones, and increases three relax-it’s-okay compounds. The Feel-Good Three. Talk about a natural high.
Yoga has been shown to boost blood levels of serotonin, dopamine, and endorphins— three natural feel-good substances. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that makes you feel cheerful and content. Dopamine is a brain chemical closely tied to the pleasure centers of the brain. And endorphins? Those are the opiate-like compounds that produce a sense of well-being.
Go big three! And the best news: You can get the benefits of yoga from a single exercise or a full-fledged class.
- The Top Diet
Which does the best job of protecting your heart: a Mediterranean-style diet or a low-fat plan? Either approach is good for your health. But the Mediterranean type gives your heart some extra protection.
Here's how. The Mediterranean-type diet brought cardiovascular disease risk down 15% in a recent study, versus 9% for the low-fat plan. Why the difference? The olive oil, nuts, fruits, veggies, whole grains, and fish that characterize a Mediterranean diet are chock-full of fiber, healthy fats, and antioxidants—all things your heart loves.
Some other reasons that might persuade you to eat like the people living in Greece, southern Italy, and other Mediterranean Sea spots: Your heart could be healthier after only 3 months of it. Here's how. It could be a boon to your brain as well as your heart. Throw in a walk and you'll get healthy even quicker. So go ahead, take the first step toward the heart-healthiest diet there is. Did You Know? Whole-grain bread with olive oil makes a smart appetizer.
- The Easiest Way Ever to Lose 10 Pounds!
It's weird, but few of us remember this seemingly unforgettable food fact: You can lose 10 pounds a year by cutting out 100 calories a day. Maybe it's just too easy?!? Or maybe we just really don't know what 100 calories looks like (unless you’re talking about one of those snack packs).
Enter this tip list from The Portion Teller Plan, a raved-about guide to "eating, cheating, and losing weight permanently" that's finally available in paperback. Nutritionist and author Lisa R. Young, PhD, RD, encourages: "Instead of meticulously consulting calorie charts or obsessively checking the USDA Nutrient Database, try these simple, painless, calorie-cutting moves"—each one eliminates about 100 calories. The punch line: Do one a day, every day, and you'll drop those 10 pounds without doing a single other thing. Or go wild and do two a day! You'll drop 10 pounds in just 6 months without a minute of dieting.
No-Brainer Ways to Cut Out About 100 Calories a Day. A sampling from
Lisa Young, RD
- Eat only half a candy bar or energy bar (both pack a lot of calories).
- Use one tablespoon of salad dressing instead of two (toss the salad really well and you won't even notice the difference).
- Choose small 1-ounce pitas instead of the larger 2-ounce size.
- Spread one tablespoon of peanut butter instead of two on bread or crackers.
- Leave the last few bites of pasta on your plate.
- Use one pat of butter instead of three on a baked potato.
- Order a tall cappuccino instead of a grande the next time you visit Starbucks.
More ideas from RealAge
- Scramble one egg for yourself, not two.
- Make all your sandwiches open-faced -- omit the top slice of bread.
- Skip the last three bites of any main course.
- Snack on one fist-sized bunch of grapes, not two.
- Grab five Hershey's dark chocolate Kisses instead of ten.
- Choose a white wine spritzer over a 5-ounce glass of wine.
- Have a 6-inch Roast Beef sandwich at Subway instead of a 6-inch Classic Steak & Cheese.
- Order a small cup at Dairy Queen instead of a small cone.
If you have found this newsletter to be helpful to you and you know someone who you feel could benefit from these thoughts and messages please pass it on.
Linda Simmon, C.Ht.