Give time

Do you remember the time when there was no internet? No cellphones, no smartphones, no computers, no emails – just perhaps a landline, but no answering machine!

Television, yes, but no broad casting 24/7 and only a few channels to chose from.

Do you remember when the shops were closed on Sundays?

That was peace!

To me, holidays and Christmas in particular, means peace and time to reconnect with the people I love. But it seems to have become increasingly more difficult to actually create that space of complete peace. Don’t you think?

Just have a look and see how distracted we are here and  here – these stories made me laugh, but really, they are sad!

Stories of people falling down stairs while texting, someone falling off a bridge, a lady into a fountain, someone fell down onto the  train tracks at the station! All were they  “Wexting” – walking while texting.

In London they are padding the lampposts because people walk into them while texting….

People in restaurants busy on their phones and not in contact with the people they are with.

All this 24//7 online connection is making us crazy, more and more stressed and disconnected.  We are missing out on precious present moments.

So how do we create a space of peace, or at least more of it?

How about something as wonderful as an “Unplugged Holiday” ? Just a few days…… unplugged, undisturbed –  connected to the real world?

Join me on my “unplugged holiday” 

This is what I plan to do:

  •  I will turn off my iPhone over Christmas
  • unplug my computer
  • No checking email, no blogging, no twitter, no Facebook, no Pinterest

I will attempt to convince my teenagers to do the same, I know it will be a hard one, but perhaps as a role model I will inspire them further down the road.

After all THE most important gift we can ever give one another – is time, time to truly be,  present with life and with each other.

“Our relationship lives in the space between us – it doesn’t live in me or in you or even in the dialogue between the two of us. It lives in the space we live together and that space is sacred”

-Martin Buber

 IMG_1362I wish you peace, reconnection and fun this holiday! 

Check this great idea out from the Clinton family:

Gifts that Give

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Be the change

Our children are stressed more than ever. They are on a non-stoppable – high – speed treadmill. Demands from school, parents, extra curricular and a never ending intrusive connection to social media and cell phones. Our children are on 24/7, always on the go.

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As a tragic result, we see anxious, depressed and stressed out children like never before. Nearly 7% of Canadian teens suffer from some serious and/or disabling anxiety.

According to an article in Globe & Mail ” School study paints a picture of teens under pressure” – this is a serious problem.

The article reveals the Canadian study of 103.000 grade 7-12 students. It  shows that teenagers are under so much stress that they are losing sleep, being driven to tears and experiencing greater levels of stress than parents and teachers expected.

Read the statistics of the study here

Dr. Atkinson, a clinical psychologist working in Toronto, sees children who are confused and overwhelmed, who are not able to experience life in a natural way, because they have to do more and move faster.

I see stress and anxiety as symptoms, a serious wake up call to all of us. Something needs to change.

Underneath stress and anxiety there are needs and suppressed emotions – stress and anxiety are natural reactions to what the children are experiencing, they are signs of overload, but the children have nowhere to go. This way of living has become the norm, we are all stressed. While this unhealthy environment goes on and on, we are creating children who are worn out, burned out before they even begin, maybe for life.

This means that children today need us more than ever.

The good news is that we by pulling the emergency brake can help our children deal with stress and burnout. Not by telling them and staying on the treadmill ourselves, but by slowing down and dealing with our own stress.

They need to see us:

  • get off our own treadmill
  • say “no” and mean it
  • say “yes” and mean it
  • meditate
  • go for walks
  • be mindful and present
  • be in the moment
  • do nothing
  • take a nap
  • have time to chat
  • have time to listen
  • have fun
  • take a long bath
  • do yoga
  • read a book
  • bake a cake
  • take care of ourselves
  • say what we mean
  • listen to our bodies
  • follow our hearts
  • take deep breath
  • have no plans

They need us more than ever: to support them, encourage them and spend time with them. 

It can be hard to do these things, but lets do it, for ourselves, our children and the future.

Be the change you want to see in the world – Mahatma Gandhi