Tag Archives: self care

“Smile, though your heart is aching” …. Really??

SHOWIndrani wrote the blog below. While you’re reading her story, think about how you are attempting to smile through all of the chaos going on in the world right now. Are you speaking up when you hear the hatred, discrimination, and abuse that is happening in presidential campaign right now? Do you have a trusted person to confide in … someone who is aligned with your values and understands your sorrow over the latest terrorist bombing in Brussels?

In the United States, we have entered into an era of transformation, divisiveness, and uncertainty. The intense energy that is surrounding us in our country is affecting us every day. We are affected by what we see and read from our friends on Facebook and social media. We are overhearing conversations about politics…. Donald Trump, Ted Cruz, Hilary Clinton, and Bernie Sanders in the restaurants, grocery stores, and parties. We are seeing people suffer from terrorists’ bombings on CNN.

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What is making your heart ache about our world? Are you smiling through it? Indrani talks about how you can speak your truth, cry if you need to, and that being taught to smile through pain is a bunch of crap!

Here is Indrani ….

“There is a song by Nat King Cole that says, “Smile though your heart is aching.” While I love the song, I no longer believe the message.

I think we need to delve into why our heart is breaking and allow a cry if that’s what’s needed and then smile as we plan a strategy to live more fully and to get away from negatively charged people and situations.

I believe that we had been sold a bunch of crap when we were being taught to smile through pain even torment.

It is this cultural brainwashing of not speaking up when things are bad or trying to keep up appearances that nothing is wrong, that gets us into lots of emotional quagmires.

We need to have trusted people in whom we can confide.

We need to tell our stories to safe people and we need to hear ourselves speak the pain out loud. Not in a way that looks like verbal vomit, but in a way that looks like true release.

Often times, just by allowing ourselves to speak the pain can ease the strangle hold that the pain seems to have.

We must, however, be careful with whom we offer our vulnerabilities. Showing someone how vulnerable you are is a gift to them and to you. You need to be sure that people can respect the gift you give.

I hope you can find true confidants and can be a true confidant to someone in need.”

Love and light,


Indrani

What are you doing to speak your truth? How are you managing your heartache these days? We’d love to hear some stories from all of you. Maybe your story can help others. Share your story below, or on our Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/indranislight/. You can also Tweet Indrani at @indranis_light.

What is the Caregiver Project?

Some of you are wondering what our Caregiver Project is all about.  Well, let’s start by defining the word, “Caregiver.”  There are a few variations of the definition, but this is the one that best fits our mission:

“Relatives, friends, or professionals who provide a wide range of paid, or unpaid care to dependent relatives, friends and/or people needing physical, mental, emotional, or spiritual support. Caregiving is the action of providing care to these individuals.”

Caregiving can include:

  • Emotional and social support (e.g. visiting, transportation, talking about emotions)
  • Finding and accessing services (e.g. housing, medical supports)
  • Behavioral support (e.g. communicating effectively, managing challenging behaviors)
  • Financial help (e.g. financial support, managing finances)
  • Practical assistance with basic activities of daily living (e.g. housekeeping, shopping, meal preparation)
  • Personal care (e.g. help with monitoring medication, bathing)
  • Physical help (e.g. assistance with movement, supervision, direct medical care)

Overarching all of these activities, caregiving is the assumption of responsibility for providing care, along with the concern, worry and emotional involvement this entails.

Why is ILF involved with the Caregivers at women’s shelters?

Early last year, the founder of ILF, Indrani Goradia, began talking with the staff of shelter facilities who were caring for victims of violence.  They began sharing their concerns for the high turnover rate of staff within their organizations, and the burnout that naturally happens due to the nature of this work.

Indrani quickly went into action.  She knew if we were losing these passionate people who work with victims of violence, we could lose the shelters, or cut the number of women, men, and children who need be housed.   Now, how could ILF help?  We can train and educate the shelter staff (the Caregivers) how to keep from burning out.

 

What we teach the Caregivers?

  • Our trainers are teaching the caregivers about different tools they can use for self-care, and lead a more balanced life.
  • We educate caregivers on how to recognize their own triggers of shame, guilt, and humiliation that effect their work and personal lives.
  • We help them improve their personal boundaries, and how to say “No” to things that compromise their well-being.
  • And we remind them that they matter, that they are loved, and that they are “seen,” for the work they do.

 

Where can we teach the Caregiver Project?

  • We can send our trainers to anywhere in the United States, and some areas of Canada.
  • We teach in women’s shelters and organizations that directly have contact with victims of violence.
  • We are currently training ILF trainers all over the world to help us reach the caregivers in other countries.

 

How much does the training cost?

We offer the Caregiver Training at NO COST to the shelter or organization.  We do, however, rely on donations to fund the 2-day training class. The training requires two certified ILF trainers, and the cost for travel, transportation, food, supplies, and pay for the entire training is approximately $5,000.00.

How can you help us with the Caregiver Project?

  • You can SPREAD THE WORD! Use social media, email, or mention us at a party or event. (facebook.com/indranislight  Twitter: @indranis_light)
  • You can BECOME AN ILF TRAINER! We will be offering the Train-the-Trainer Course every year to certify trainers to teach our ILF curriculum to their own communities and shelters.
  • You can DONATE! Here is where you can donate ANY AMOUNT to help our Caregiver Project, or any other area of our mission to end domestic violence.

 

We need your feedback. 

  1. What do you think of the project?
  2. Is this something you would love to support?
  3. How would you like to support us?
  4. What more could we do?

 

If you have already supported our mission in any way, we want to extend our deepest gratitude.  If you would like to do more, or maybe you haven’t taken the step to support us yet, please reach out to our Director of Education and Training, Amy Dier, at amy@indranislight.org.  She will be more than happy to talk with you about your options.

 

Love & Light,

 

Team ILF

 

Brighter Life Bit #31: How do you invest in yourself?

ILF_Wtagline_Logo rgbWelcome to this Brighter Life Bit #31.  For this lesson, you can listen to the original teaching at the 39:10 minute mark of the Class 5 recording. You can download the audio from the ILF website here.

How do you invest in yourself?  What is the quality of how you treat yourself? What happens when we do NOT practice restoring ourselves?

Examples:

 

  • How often to you practice self-care?
  • Could you choose to increase some of your self-care practices?
  • What are the symptoms of the lack of self-care?
  • Who else is impacted when you do not practice self-care?
  • And what areas of our lives suffer when we ignore our own needs?

 

 

Exercise:

  • Get out your journal.  Write down a list of physical symptoms you feel when you don’t take care of yourself.
  • Now place check marks next to the items on your list that you can change this week!  
  • Do you need to set an intention to heal a relationship that has suffered?

Share your experience with us.  How will you invest in yourself? Share your comments below this post.

Brighter Life Bit #30: How can you use P.E.R.M.A. to manage Self-Care?

ILF_Wtagline_Logo rgbWelcome to this Brighter Life Bit #30.  For this lesson, you can listen to the original teaching at the 31:30 minute mark of the Class 5 recording. You can download the audio from the ILF website here.

What does P.E.R.M.A. stand for?  How can it impact your well-being and give you a restorative practice?

Exercise:Take out your journal.  Please write down what you are doing right now. How does this activity connect to one (or more than one) of the five buckets of P.E.R.M.A?

Examples:

  • Volunteering – Meaining and Purpose
  • Reading a book – Positive Emotions
  • Working on a special project – Engagement
  • Cooking dinner for friends – Relationship to Others
  • Doing art – Achievement

 

Now think of a place in your life where you can introduce P.E.R.M.A.  

Share your experience with us.  What did you choose to do to practice self-care? Share your comments below this post.

Brighter Life Bit #29: What is Self-Care?

ILF_Wtagline_Logo rgbWelcome to this Brighter Life Bit #29. For this lesson, you can listen to the original teaching at the 24 minute mark of the Class 5 recording. You can download the audio from the ILF website here.

What is the definition of Self-Care? And what is the intention?

Exercise: Take out your journal. Write down 3 things you can do EVERY day to practice self care.

Examples: Take a walk
Ask a family member to cook dinner
Meditate/pray
Go to tea with a friend

“Doing Self-Care is preventative medicine…”
~ Andrea J. Lee | Indrani’s Light Foundation Goodwill Ambassador

Share your experience with us. What did you choose to do to practice self-care? Share your comments below this post.

Staying in YOUR OWN business will reduce SELF ABUSE….

office-336368_640Some of you will have read the title of this blog and have no earthly idea where I will be going.

Others of you will say, “But of course, everyone knows this!”

Still others may just be amused that the title may seem trite.

Let me tell you a story to make this topic come alive. A few years ago, at a business conference I heard a CEO of a large company recall an instance of how this manifested in the C suite.

He was sitting and engaged in his work when he was interrupted by his personal secretary to say that someone from Marketing had a very serious issue.

Being a benevolent CEO, he stopped his work and took the unscheduled meeting.

The Marketing employee came to to tell the CEO that EVERYONE in the Marketing department hated the manager. She listed (painfully) a long string of names of those who had been wronged and how they were wronged and just how affronted she was at the whole state of affairs in the Marketing dept.

The CEO, leaned back in his chair (sure fire behavior that she had lost his attention) and asked her ONE question.

This was it…”Were you appointed by the WHOLE department to bring these atrocities to my attention?”

The answer was a halting and faltering “no.”

He continued, “No one asked you to come to me with this litany of complaints.”

She said, “no.”

He said, leaning forward, “What is YOUR specific problem with your job?”

She blurted out that someone who did less work than she did was making more money than she was.

The CEO, then simply told us these words, “If she had come in with ONLY her problem, we would have looked at it and made a correction. The fact that she was in everyone’s business was so unprofessional that she threw herself under a bus.”

I heard that story many years ago.

I really had not assimilated it to other life incidents as efficiently as I did a few days ago while I was mediating between a home owner and a domestic helper.

I started with the domestic helper first and I asked what her concernS were and she began a litany of past ills NOT against herself but against others she had heard about.

She told me about “Mary” who was underpaid and about “Janice” who was put upon and “had” to ignore her own family and on and on.

I could NOT find a way into this woman’s issues and her individual problems.

Every time I tried to speak she blocked me with another litany.

I then asked her to STOP.

I said I am going to tell you a story. I told her the story from the CEO, the story above. She was enthralled.

I asked her, at the end of the story, to tell me what the CEO was disappointed about and why.

She was able to identify that the employee was in everyone’s business but her own!

Then, I said “Are you in other people’s business with all the stories you were telling me and not able to identify your own issues?”

She agreed that she was indeed NOT in her business.

I had been observing her facial expressions and body language as she retold the stories that were not hers to tell. She was agitated and closed in and contracted.

When she began to be in her business she was open and her face was not contorted. She was actually able to smile and laugh at some of the humor that I was pointing out.

The moral of this story is:

When we stay in our business we practice self care at its finest.

Byron Katie has a great worksheet for understanding whose business you are in.

Please visit www.byronkatie.com/judgethyneighbor

You will be amazed at what you discover.

 

Love & light,

Indrani

Let’s all do more of these in the New Year…..

Happy-New-Year-2014-Blast-Wishes-Greating-Card1

Smile more.

Speak with compassion.

Help a stranger.

Take more steps and move your body.

Tell yourself you ARE good enough.

Eat 5% more healthy.

Complete this sentence:
If I were to follow my purpose I would be brave enough to ________________.

Now find a way to begin that journey.

A very happy 2015!

 

Love & light,

TEAM ILF

LABL 008: Three Stories From Indrani

Welcome to Episode #8 of the Live a Brighter Life Podcast!

In this episode of the Live a Brighter Life Podcast Indrani does what she does best: tell important stories. You will learn:

  • about Indrani’s childhood and move to New York – and the woman she was
  • dealing with depression and entering her new life
  • standing up for the work and putting her ego aside
  • a tool to help you identify where you are stuck

Podcast Recording

LABL 005: Restoring Self – Stand in Your Divine Power

Welcome to Episode #5 of the Live a Brighter Life Podcast!

In this episode of the Live a Brighter Life Podcast Indrani and Andrea discuss restoring self. Specifically you will:

  • Learn about self care
  • Identify your self-care needs
  • Create a plan for your own replenishment
  • Be introduced to one restorative practice – Chakras

Podcast Recording

Who are you having a conversation with?

Think about who you have to listen to each day and have a conversation with, or communicate with daily:listen to yourself via dailyworth

  •         Spouse
  •         Kids
  •         Your boss
  •         Employees
  •         Friends
  •         The people sitting next to you
  •         The check out person at the store

The list can go on and on….

With all of phone calls, texts, emails and face-to-face conversations that go on during the course of a day we could be listening to 10’s and for some 100’s of people a day.

Let’s imagine a conversation with our best friend.

ME: Hi! How ya doing?  How’s your day?
FRIEND: Well, today I am tired and I just don’t have any energy.

ME: Oh really? I am sorry to hear that. Why?
FRIEND: Yes. I am really dragging, I am a little down.

ME: Oh, are you getting enough sleep?  Eating well?  Are you sick?
FRIEND: No, I did not get enough sleep.  I’m not sick. Maybe I am not eating enough veggies and I’m eating too much junk food, maybe that is it….

ME: What can I do to help? Why don’t you turn the phone off and take a nap. Your work/laundry/cleaning/ will still be there when you wake up.  But you’ll feel better.   Oh, I know, finish up what you have to get done and call it a day. Take a bath and just start fresh tomorrow.

Does this conversation sound familiar?

Notice that nowhere in the list of people we listen to everyday, who we talk with, do we take the time to have a quiet conversation with ourselves.  Let’s take that same conversation and switch roles of our best friend with ourselves, our bodies.

ME: Hi how ya doing?  How’s your day?
MYSELF: Well, today I am tired and I just don’t have any energy.

ME: Oh really why?  Come on shake it off, it’s a work day you know…
MYSELF: I am really dragging, I am a little down.

ME: Oh you had four, almost five hours sleep. It’s almost the weekend, toughen up.  Maybe a Starbucks or a Coke will pick you up…the day will be over soon.
MYSELF: No, I did not get enough sleep.  I’m not sick. Maybe I am not eating enough veggies and I’m eating too much junk food, maybe that is it….

ME: Listen, just push through the day, let’s get our work/laundry/cleaning done and cross it off the list.  We’ll try to go to bed early. Hey the weekend is coming and maybe we can take a nap then.  Snap to it!

The first conversation with our friends is a kind, warm and compassionate conversation. The second is cold, uncaring and demanding.
Why is it that we are the hardest on ourselves?

Take some time to listen to your heart, mind and body.  Show it the same warmth, caring and compassion as you would your best friend or even your child.

We should always take time to have a conversation with ourselves and listen closely to what we need.