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Hello, Vibrant Reader!
I've been fascinated recently with some mind-body research that has been going on. Although it seems like the simplest of common sense, researchers at the Univ. of Calif. in San Diego did a study of 4700 persons over a 30-year period and concluded that happiness is contagious. They noted that if a social contact of yours is happy, you have a 15% greater chance of being happy. The most interesting thing is that if a third-degree contact (a friend of a friend) is happy, you have a 6% greater chance to be happy.
In another study--one of several--done at Ohio State University, researchers concluded that hope is consistently associated with fewer symptoms of depression. Now that seems like a no-brainer--if you have no hope, isn't that somewhere in the definition of depression? Well probably, but the researchers point out that hope is something that can be taught, and can be developed in many people with depression. So, teaching hope becomes a clinically valid method for addressing depression.
My suspicion is that hope is also contagious, simply because happy people have hope. Boyd and I were reminding ourselves today that dwelling on negative outcomes, and carrying around gloom and dissatisfaction with the "way things are," does nothing to change anything. It may be, in fact, creating the very conditions for further negativity.
So, as the old saw goes, "Don't worry, be happy" --and I'd add, be hopeful and get busy. In this way, everyone around you is lifted up and that wave spreads around the world.
On a little bit of a different note, my new project for the coming year is a series of interviews and articles about psychology and spirituality of food. I'll explore why we eat what we eat, and how we eat, with several very interesting people I've met through my experiences at the Optimum Health Institute. Food and eating can be a spiritually nourishing activity, or a source of addiction and ill health, and I believe it to be a very timely subject that affects everyone. So stay tuned for that! Meanwhile, click on the cartoon below for some holiday humor!
In vibrant health,
"If you want others to be happy, practice compassion. If you want to be happy, practice compassion." -- Dalai Lama
Tips for De-Stressing the Holidays
But learning the art of relaxation can help relieve social, financial and other pressures that can take the fun out of this time of year, according to Julie Kosey, manager of integrative health coaching at Duke Integrative Medicine.
"Relaxation is a right, not a privilege," Kosey said in a Duke news release. If you don't learn to relax, she added, stress could take a toll on your personal and professional relationships, health, productivity and overall well-being.
Respecting your personal needs is an important part of mastering relaxation, said Kosey, who offered the following tips:
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Modern-day quantum physics has begun to scientifically explain these ancient practices, and new technologies are now available as a result. Quantum physics refers to this life energy, or "chi," as SUBTLE ENERGY. Without having to get too technical, the laws of quantum physics allow that life energy can be transferred from one substance to another. This is where the Life Energy Super Pack comes in... >>>> MORE INFO
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