How Stress Spreads and Methods To Avoid It

How Stress Spreads and Methods To Avoid It

HR Academy, Social
Two employees walk into the office one regularly-scheduled work day morning. They respectfully go their separate desks, set down their belongings but cling to the unnerving chaos experienced moments before work. Mental disorders from unmanaged stress are climbing far above heart conditions, cancer, and diabetes. Everyone experiences stress.  Shared similar interests creates a community. Current points of tension to managing stress include: how people manage stress; just who is responsible to managing it; and, health knowledge about why it's valuable to manage stress   Below are two cases of three people. Each reveal how stress is contagious and methods to stop it from spreading. Sensations to Stress Alan's brain interprets the sound and sight of Joe eating tortilla chips as an annoyance. Sally isn't phased by Joe's eating habits. When Alan is sitting one…
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Performance Behaviors and Strategies For Pain and Stress from Trauma

Performance Behaviors and Strategies For Pain and Stress from Trauma

HR Academy, Spiritual
It is often suggested to avoid discussions about spirituality, yet this behavior offers numerous performance resources. Medical professionals openly ask questions about spiritual behaviors to energize performance outcomes. Pain, stress, and trauma effect mental and physical health.  Jay Mahler is the founder of The California Mental Health and Spirituality Initiative. His purview of spiritual performance is "the experience of 'madness' can include a profound experience of connection and spirituality; oneness with nature; and the meaning and purpose of life," A few of the most common questions that revolve around spiritual behaviors include: "Why me?" "Have I done something wrong to cause this to happen to me?" "Can I still rely on myself?" "What will the future hold for me?" Fear's most common outcomes are withdrawal and ignorance. The University of Cambridge argue spiritual…
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Performance Improves By Sound, Taste, and Visual Responses

Performance Improves By Sound, Taste, and Visual Responses

HR Academy, Intellectual
Science has been slowly revealing how to retrain the brain. Day-to-day there are moments when something isn't so pleasant. Consistent moodiness may trigger with an overly optimistic peer. Frequent disruptions are common with high-traffic noise in the walkway. A foggy brain after lunch disengages attention to detail. Cognitive science is linking biological responses like those listed above with cultural experiences. Performance improves by changing daily experiences. Sound, taste, and visual responses are three biological initiatives for retraining the brain. Here Is What You Hear A new part of the brain was revealed through auditory testing. Scientists confirms the brain has neuroplasticity. This means the brain is capable to change patterns with thinking, feeling, and behaving. According to most recent research frequency-following responses is one way to improve  audible sensitivities and…
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Agonizing Meetings Could Be Due to Presence Disparity

Agonizing Meetings Could Be Due to Presence Disparity

HR Academy, Workplace
Finished projects bring moments of exhilaration for all involved. Those involved that were engaged empowered the productivity of the project. When all employees on a team are present by actively listening, creating, and collaborating there is consistently powerful, innovative outcomes that increase revenue. The alternative is a phenomenon identified as presence disparity, which compromises innovative workflow and timely productivity. Presence disparity is when telecommuters physically experience a compromising difference when virtually collaborating. Missing verbal and visual content due to background noises or poor quality live stream video strains the body. This mentally, physically, and emotionally taxing effect loses productive opportunities. Collaborative moments lose empowered creativity and revenue-building strategies. Full engagement requires all senses prepared to mentally interpret content. Presence Disparity is a macro-sensory productivity issue. High-quality video is one solution to improving engagement…
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A Seamstress Exhibiting Stress In The Workplace

A Seamstress Exhibiting Stress In The Workplace

HR Academy, Workplace
GIG Design's team discussed observations of a seamstress exhibiting stress in the workplace. Observations of the work environment included details of the lighting, noise, temperature, and peer engagement. The work space is an open area of approximately thirty seamstresses, all sitting at a sewing station actively engaging in production of a product. Observations of the seamstress were noted to be signs of distress as exhibited by facial expressions, frequent posturing with head tilted into hand through elbow support, uncharacteristic pauses of production. Following a lifestyle profile and sensory assessment she identified as under-responsive to sensations. Hyposensitivities This form of regulating the nervous system is categorized by muted, delayed responses, and low sensory registration. This individual passively regulates their nervous system, has a high threshold to sensory stimuli, and passively reacts to sensations.…
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Five Steps To Engage In A Healthy Lifestyle

Five Steps To Engage In A Healthy Lifestyle

Emotional
How do your thoughts articulate each moment you experience? “I'm confidently griping the handle of this heavy meeting-room door, stepping into this meeting that will shape and sharpen feelings of fulfillment in my life.” Thoughts vividly characterize the body's experience. Our body senses every tiny thing before describing it with words. This phenomenon directs behaviors. The brain encodes then decodes sensory stimuli then informs the nervous system how to respond. It then links to our subjective frame of mind. Since we're creatures of habit everything we currently avoid was first formulated through an unpleasant past experience. Behaviors demonstrate how the body stores then processes sensations into action. Awareness of your unique sensory response, understanding metaphors, your internal dialogue, and an abstract representation of your self mediates behavior response. How do you discover your…
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How To Stimulate Meaningful Performance Choices

How To Stimulate Meaningful Performance Choices

Feature
Choosing day-to-day activities become a quality of life that is meaningful to you. Occupational Therapists facilitate performance goal setting for achieving a desired quality of life. This includes leisure activities that are meaningful. Whether your leisure activity be cooking, painting, dancing or photography they stimulate meaningful performance. Leisure occupations improve performance through periods of rest to recuperate from taxing work roles. Meaningful choices become therapeutic to daily performance. Below are photos to provide examples of things that are meaningful to me. [caption id="attachment_5237" align="aligncenter" width="287"] This photo was taken at a local Seattle farmer’s market (Fremont) where artisans created these beautiful pentagon potteries to hold the plants.[/caption] In the Chinese and Japanese Culture pentagons are symbolic for the 5 elements of life: metal, wood, water, fire and earth. I chose…
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Tea: An Inexpensive, Medicative Commodity

Tea: An Inexpensive, Medicative Commodity

Feature
There’s just something so nice about a hot cup of tea in your hand.  That cozy feeling with beautifully aroma of herbs, spices or clean green tea. At work there’s something that the chaplains provide called “Tea for the Soul”.  At first I thought it was just fun with a great supportive social aspect giving us a chance to sit, take a break, drink some tea and talk.  However, it had become my coping mechanism.  Just the other day, I was grieving about some losses and I couldn’t believe how comforting it was to have someone offer me tea.  It felt just as good as a long cry after a sappy movie or a breath of fresh air after being stuck in a room. It was definitely the next best thing. Allowing my senses to…
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Why Alone Time May Improve Performance Outcomes

Why Alone Time May Improve Performance Outcomes

HR Academy, Spiritual
The word "alone" can mean different things. For instance, the single business, self-employed person may work alone. Going through a morning routine, doing a crossword puzzle, or cleaning the house are all activities that may be done during alone time. Often employees would be ecstatic to have alone time in place of work time around numerous or sometimes one person. However, there are other moments when being alone can be uncomfortable or down right scary. Being alone triggers spirit-based behaviors. Performance relies on the spirit of an individual. At GIG Design spiritual behavior is one part of design sensibility. It establishes actionable behaviors within purpose-seeking and existence. Examples of spiritual behaviors are hope, resiliency, and value-based support for discovering and acting on ways to thrive. Spirituality empowers meaningfulness within performance.…
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Five Questions to Identify Which Stress Condition Is at Risk

Five Questions to Identify Which Stress Condition Is at Risk

HR Academy, Occupational
One-fourth of all employees view their job as the number one stress in their lives. ¹  Yale University found that twenty-six percent workers report they are "often or very often burned out or stressed by their work. ² Health care expenditures are nearly fifty percent greater for workers who report high levels of stress. ³ The National Institute of Occupational Science and Health state that job stress is: the harmful physical and emotional responses that occur when the requirements of the job do not match the capabilities, resources or needs of the worker. Identifying the varied signs of job stress are what occupational therapy practitioners are skilled at. Stress is rarely seen as serious by both employees and employers. It's become a societal norm that people simply refer to their day as 'so busy'.…
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How Design Sensibility Impacts Performance Outcomes

How Design Sensibility Impacts Performance Outcomes

HR Academy, Spiritual
Dancing without music may appear as silly or odd. Dancing needs guided rhythm and music ignites an internal rhythm that may be expressed with movement. Design Sensibility unites mediums with sensations for best performance. The ability to improve performance through responses to sensations, complex emotional or aesthetic influences through the use of context, occupation and sense factors is design sensibility. Performance barriers may exist and misguide behavior responses including attention or situational discernment. Design sensibility offers the ability to detect an issue, identify an issue, then solve the issue. When athletes strengthen skill they first recognize their weakness. Scientists identify that when performance focused attention is externally rather than internally then performance is enhanced. If a sprinter's speed weakness then with design sensibility they may ignite a mindset to 'imagine…
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How to Avoid Missing What Someone Has Said

How to Avoid Missing What Someone Has Said

Social
Active listening in it's most proper form fatigues the mind as the day moves forward. Performance functions at peak level when not multi-tasking, therefore engaging active listening is with in a posture and intent to hear and understand. Our ear's physiology is fascinating. It holds the smallest bone in the body. Sound separates into vibrations by hair fiber movement. Each ear has a relay station that splits into two pathway's to filter sounds. The paths cross hemispheres to recognize, distinguish, and filter auditory information. Sound localization, pattern recognition, timing, and balance are main processes of the ear. Our shoulders, neck, head, eyes and lips are the asset here. Social listening often includes head movement. Examples include nodding yes or tilting the head in compassion. These movements send messages to your…
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Beauty in Life

Beauty in Life

WholeBe Toolkit
The idea of beauty is subjective.  WholeBeSM teaches the idea of beauty as a trigger to design sensibility. The universal root + definition of Beauty LATIN | bellus {beautiful, fine} an aesthetic allure in the harmony of color, form, shape a particular pleasurable advantage or item Helen Keller said, "The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched.  They must be felt with the heart." What you perceive as beauty is a direct result of your senses. They peak a dialogue between sights, smells, and sounds. It is arousal following a  harmony within.  It's achievement of gratification by the senses. Beauty in life is unique and individualized.  It is most often interpreted visually. Schedule the Equip Package for the WholeBeSM toolkit and coaching to use Design Sensibility in your daily performance.
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Dialogue in Life

Dialogue in Life

WholeBe Toolkit
When we think of dialogue we think of conversation.  However there is another way to use this word? WholeBeSM toolkits uses dialogue for triggering design sensibility. The universal root + definition of Dialogue GREEK | dia {through} legein {speak} a discussion between two or more people an exchange of views - opinions or ideas Louis Kahn said, "You say to a brick, 'What do you want, brick?' And brick says to you, 'I like an arch.' And you say to brick, 'Look, I want one, too, but arches are expensive and I can use a concrete lintel.' And then you say: 'What do you think of that, brick?' Brick says: 'I like an arch.'" Dialogue in life is listening and sharing.  It is receiving, considering, and reacting to information. When relationships fray, tension occurs. In these moments dialogue…
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Alone Time

Alone Time

Feature
While driving down I-90 with the music low, I took in everything new. Then I watched the yellow line patterns and the steady row of trucks chugging along.  It went from feeling fresh to quickly becoming monotonous. I grew eager to just be home. In that moment, I felt for those traveling as part of daily life - whether long trips on the road, maybe flying or just a timely commute. Over the past two years this has been the norm for my fiancé.  Fortunately, he handles this well because he connects quickly with new people and takes time to explore new places. Upon returning home, people often ask about stories from his travels and new experiences. More often than not in relationships in which one travels, other people tend to overlook…
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Performance Growth Once Boredom Is Detected

Performance Growth Once Boredom Is Detected

HR Academy, Intellectual
Boredom is an experience many people avoid. This clinician researched "doing, being and boredom" in 1,500 young subjects. His summary: they were bored 42% of the time with only 10% of their time being spent doing 'productive' work. The difference appeared to be how the recipients used their time: passive leisure self-care education, and labor force. In the Lego Movie the characters created an activity because they became bored in their relationships. Angry Dad hated his son's creativity. It interred with Dad's idea of play. At the end of the movie Dad identified his idea of being playful was a still scene of perfection. The son's idea of play was doing play. Once Dad understood the difference between their play perspectives his compassion moved them from a relationship that idolized boredom to one that appreciated…
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If Seeking Greater EQ Then Improve Self-Awareness

If Seeking Greater EQ Then Improve Self-Awareness

HR Academy, Spiritual
Dr. Steven Aung and Dr. Badri Rickhi are positioning mental health and spiritual wellbeing as a mind/body necessity. There are three recommendations they encourage for achieving improved performance: stress reduction programs, adapting the body to nature, and being aware of the senses. Rationale and emotions steer behavior reactions. A "window of tolerance" is what Dr. Bessel van der Kolk identifies as that short moment between being stimulated - feeling and rationalizing - to behaving a certain way. When the body is hyper-aroused then the brain disengages from that short moment of time. Neuroscience identifies self-awareness as the most effective way to build EQ. Silence or music engages self-awareness. Soulfulness engages neurological links that direct the mind into harmonic patterns. We process sounds in the same region of the brain that we process behavior change. Harmony…
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How to Use Patterned Play To Overcome Adversity

How to Use Patterned Play To Overcome Adversity

HR Academy, Intellectual
Sometimes I find it strange when I'm surrounded by quiet people.  It seems that I am surrounded by "noisy brains". Of course, I need to quiet my head-talk to get to that thought. One comforting idea is, what if everyone replaced listening to their head-talk by watching a picture-reel. Imagine their words becoming images. We often mistake 'play' as a child's activity.  However, adults play too. Patterned play begins with being imaginative. The life cycle of play is a conceptive (mental) moment arching towards nourishment and habits of the spirit, creativity, and relationships. Shame is linked to experiences of creative failure. Adults who deny feeling ashamed invest in the pattern of play. Play is also coined as abductive reasoning. Questions to Ask: Define what 'play' currently is in your workplace? Are you able to form mental pictures? What…
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Morning Crazies

Morning Crazies

Feature
Planning what I wear to work has been harder over the past year. With shared spaces, what should easily be a 15 minute or less routine, often becomes a hunt.  Where did my favorite top go? Running between laundry baskets or digging into drawers is not uncommon.  I know my role with morning crazies requires a change in multiple areas: environment, obtaining specific items, senses, attitude. Consider reorganizing closet space The closet situation is not working out.  Hangers are a desired item in this bedroom.  I thought back on a time when this was not an issue. Picture a large closet with a glowing light filling it.  That closet brought about borderline morning miracles on a daily basis. Clothing Simplicity The next area to tackle was my mind.  Was my desire to switch…
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Peers In the Workplace That Are Recovering From Trauma

Peers In the Workplace That Are Recovering From Trauma

Occupational
Peers in the workplace that are recovering from trauma will have difficulty verbalizing their emotions or even a simple thought (VanderKolk, 2014).  There is an uncertainty about life that confuses as they sort through their trauma.  With time and repetition, their communication patterns will slowly form into crisp, clear, confidant responses. Confidence often comes after strategy. Chess is a great example of strategy. Wikipedia enlightens on the historical game of chess, once called curling: a great deal of strategy and teamwork goes into choosing the ideal path and placement of a stone for each situation, and the skills of the curlers determine how close to the desired result the stone will achieve. Workplace culture words optimize strategies. Teamwork helps but listening and comprehension is key.  A safe environment and it's objects enable trust.…
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This Chemical In Your Body Increases Creativity

This Chemical In Your Body Increases Creativity

HR Academy, Physical
  Science supports the ability to further improve creativity throughout our life span. Harvard Business Review defied disciplined routines to encourage creativity as the core to doing things efficiently and effectively. Creativity will "deposit confidence in our cerebral bank accounts," according to Forbes. It's a myth a person doesn't have a creative ability. The body produces a chemical for the brain and nervous system to communicate. Serotonin regulates sleep, body temperature and libido. It also increases creativity. The production of serotonin increases when: exposed to bright light, engaged in frequent exercise, diet including chickpeas and wild seeds in place of meat proteins, and self-induced changes in mood. Questions to Ask: What resources are used to maintain efficient and effective performance in your work tasks? What is the primary way you would increase…
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Six Key Employee and Workplace Contextual Elements

Six Key Employee and Workplace Contextual Elements

HR Academy, Spiritual
There are workplaces with a culture expectation of work tracked by shift hours or a behavior standard to cover all tattoos. A workplace belief and custom may be whispering through cubicle workstations. These are examples of contextual elements in the workplace. Context is one of three performance factors used to improve performance outcomes. Contextual elements identify opportunities for education, employment and economic support as accepted by the culture in which one is a member. Context is one of three performance factors to divide performance into behavior-specific elements. The elements categorized as contextual include: expectations of culture, personal beliefs and customs, behavioral standards, demographics, stage of life and history, and relationship to time.   Occupation and sense are the additional factors to organizing performance elements. The context factor digs into workplace policy…
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REM and Non-REM Sleep Improves Three Performance Behaviors

REM and Non-REM Sleep Improves Three Performance Behaviors

Physical
If work performance is a struggle consider sleep hygiene through establishing nighttime and daytime habits. The body is capable of waking up to 10 minutes prior to the desired morning time without an alarm clock. Non-REM sleep is a slow-wave type of sleep and REM is characterized by rapid eye movement, dreaming and more body movement. Sleep deprivation causes the brain to activate sleep rebound or pressure responses. Sleep in a quiet environment with dark drapes and at a temperature set at 69 degrees to support the three actionable performance behaviors below. Intellectual Behavior Estimating time is a skill that improves as we age but sleep also triggers this skill (Aritake and  Higuchi 2012). Both non-REM and REM sleep supports intellectual performance. In addition to time management it supports short and long term…
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Earth Sets A Standard To Our Indoor Experiences

Earth Sets A Standard To Our Indoor Experiences

Feature
According to Merriam Webster, the definition of earth tones is: any of various rich colors containing some brown. This past week I drove across the country from Lake Havasu City, AZ back to upstate NY.  Despite the overflow of boxes, a hermit crab cage and toiletries from the backseat, we had an amazing trip.  The outside scenery flew by and changed frequently from day to day; everything from the desert to a slow and steady rain cloud that followed us.  We finally drove into New York in the middle of the night with nothing but black surrounding us with a soft hue of the moon covered by clouds. On The Drive, I realized how visually influenced I am.  It sets the tone for everything to follow.  The sight and sound…
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Interior Design for Positive Aspects

Interior Design for Positive Aspects

Spiritual
The first reflection of a person is said to be witnessed in a still, calm body of water. Following, craftsmen caught onto the fact that a polished stone, like copper and bronze, provided much sought after mirrors for grooming. Today the task of mirrors reaches beyond your reflection to reflect your best self in metaphor or form. Reflection also takes shape as a thought, value or goal. When your arrow aims at healthy roles, habits and performance, then design your environment to support following through at your very best.  Steelcase recently blogged on their 360 Research page that wellbeing is systematic and holistic. "The team went on to conclude that the places where people come together to work can be designed to have a positive impact on a variety of dimensions of worker…
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How Much Caffeine is Too Much?

How Much Caffeine is Too Much?

Physical
Hot coffee is one of my favorite ways to start the day.  I love the routine of it, the smells that fill the kitchen and the way milk twirls, turns about until mixed. But the longer lasting reaction is a little more complicated.  I have begun to notice that the effects of coffee, i.e. flying through the fastest workday feeling, also comes with some side effects.  After a few sips, I begin to lose touch with my body and ultimately with where my personal sensory needs are at. Benefits of Self-Regulating: Increasing your focus to what requires your attention To further take care of yourself and your present needs To be able to engage in meaningful life activities Ability to deal with difficult situations that arise Know yourself better. Prevent.…
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Work May Trigger Repetitive Conflicts

Work May Trigger Repetitive Conflicts

Workplace
Work behaviors are a distinct part of you. We may have control over our home environments but our work environments are a collaboration of peers. The workplace has a culture of unwritten values creating its community. Regardless of who or what sets the cultural tone, there will be things that trigger you out of your control into an unhealthy zone  (CompPsych 2013). There are strategies to prepare for this. Its those other ways you occupy your time that directly effect your behaviors. Sleep is one statistically proven strategy (Foster 2013). What other ways do you occupy your time? Play, the commute to work, or self-care routines are some.  When we walk over the threshold into the workplace we bring all of life's current events with us. This is natural with…
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Respond to Anger with Kindness

Respond to Anger with Kindness

Occupational
We are unique! Our behaviors respond in different ways. At work leaders may tell you to respond to anger with kindness.  Effective communication is often interpreted as kindness. Put down the mental shot gun of using feelings about the subject, current mood, and impressions to achieve this (Kahneman 2011). Begin with understanding one's true nature. We respond with harmony or discord. Understanding one's personality and temperament helps develop healthy relationships. It enhances goal achievement. It enables you to respond to anger with kindness! If knowing one's true nature sounds like a winning solution to you, below is personality and temperament descriptives. Personality A collective of an individual's attitudes, behavioral patterns, emotional responses, social roles and other individual traits that are innate, predisposed and endure over a long period of time. We recharge one…
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Six Creative Ways To Invest In a Joyful Day With A Dreaded Commute On The Horizon

Six Creative Ways To Invest In a Joyful Day With A Dreaded Commute On The Horizon

Feature
Once I striped away the spite from a new, yet tedious commute to my weekday routine the challenge was to plan carefully - given traffic, traffic cones and added coffee stops along my route. Yes, some days it is plural. Temporary living conditions includes a culture where long commutes are the norm rather than the exception. I find this unfortunate. Getting my brain relaxed about the commute each day helps sustain energy.  With every sunrise I start anew and there is no cookie cutter answer. Although there are creative ways to invest in a joyful day with a dreaded commute on the horizon. Here are six: NPRs Wait! Wait! Don't Tell Me! quizzes contestants on weekly news. Hilarious! Ask Me Another shares Puzzles & word games, including limericks. I heart NPR. Listen…
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The Sit or Stand Ordeal Is Suspicious to Research Bias

The Sit or Stand Ordeal Is Suspicious to Research Bias

HR Academy, Occupational
Lately the question to stand or sit at a desk has been a hot topic in research. Conclusively, consumers hear it's better to stand than to sit or that sitting is bad for you. Before identifying whether its good for you to sit or stand first unravel research bias. In the Brain Science Podcast 97 on Nueroanthropology, Dr. Downey (neuroscience) and Dr. Lende (anthropology) explained that they met while debating points over their cubicle. Ten years later and over hundreds of miles between one another they instinctively began to contact one another. The gesture was to compare points in order to glean off from one another's expertise. Research may be where it becomes skewed says Dr. Downey: There's a whole emergence, for example, of cultural neuroscience; of research teams, that often times work…
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These Easy Breathing Patterns May Instantly Reward Aging

These Easy Breathing Patterns May Instantly Reward Aging

Emotional
Right now the rose garden bares full, velvet red roses. They're irresistible to pass by without stepping off the path for my nose to gracefully greet them. Overtly fragrant. This was the one time today I noticed myself taking a deep breath, otherwise my deep belly sigh is a witness to fatigue or that feeling of being overwhelmed. Attention to breathing in moments to sigh or smell refreshes focus to body stress. Breathing is recognized in naturopathic remedies, yoga, and meditation. Medical practitioners frequently encourage their patients to breath deep in order to reduce or eliminate pain. Notice one practice is for skill and the other is prevention. Occupational therapy practitioners are enthusiasts of energy conversation techniques or ECTs. One ECT is breathing. Approximately 9 of 10 people I work with daily reduce…
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8 Easy Freebies For Guaranteed Body Support At Work or For Travel

8 Easy Freebies For Guaranteed Body Support At Work or For Travel

HR Academy, Occupational
Adjusting to work conditions as a telecommuter has its challenges. Good fortune may bring a flat surface wide enough to support a laptop. Typically, its propped across the legs with occasional havoc if they're crossed. The back bumper of a car may become a chair. A work surface may be the cost of a warm beverage. Sometimes the price jacks-up when there's the unfortunate parking ticket. Of course, there is that occasional back corner desk that costs musty smells from trash-worthy office furnishings. A spirited stress-less performance while on the road depends on adaption.  This doesn't mean to desensitize postural or mental supremacy. These costs become epidemic to musculoskeletal disorders to the spine or hips or suppressive anxiety beatings. The occasional is an exception but retirement may span into later years if hospital bills or…
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Our Brain Craves Music

Our Brain Craves Music

Intellectual
Recently a client passionately shared the fact that everything has and needs rhythm. He spoke into many different illustrations to support his thought-provoking theory. It so happens that its scientifically proven, too (Zatoore and Salimpoor 2013). He explained I was made out of rhythm. What?! Yes. The rhythmic movement of my parents having sex. This was a novel thought. I reflected on such a melodic, beautifully comforting perspective of a moment bringing forth life. If I clung to that point-of-view all the time I might be more merciful towards my parents.  Compassion begins with consideration of one's sacrifices. Mental reminders that may refresh a deep gratitude is one way to mature perspective of people's behaviors. Behavior stems from learning why and how to react. The integrity of behaviors may mature…
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How To Quit Smoking

How To Quit Smoking

Feature
Smoking isn't healthy but it kept me sane. It was a deadly habit but it helped me thrive professionally, socially and oddly enough, athletically. I loved to smoke and didn't attempt to quit until the day I stopped 'cold turkey'.  The miracle in this was I lost the urge to smoke but I gained a body that was unable to cope with stress. What I did: smoke to cope. Our hormones are what regulates stress. Everyone doesn't have the same hormone secretion so our level of what is stressful can vary. This is significant to how an individual will react within the fight-or-flight response. How to quit smoking is similar to unravelling a ball of yarn from a neatly organized ball. My late teens, twenties then just into my thirties were…
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Creating a Perfect Cup of Coffee

Creating a Perfect Cup of Coffee

Physical
It's the process that creates a perfect cup of coffee...the aroma, color, shape, sounds and the movement and the location of where the coffee beans are stored or the drive to the cafe. It's all sensory data that is registered in your brain. RadioLab airs how the brain interprets this by using the metaphor music.  The entire broadcast is worth the hour listen, but if your short on time skip forty-four minutes into RadioLabs play-by-play of creating a cup of coffee within the sensory interpretation. Coffee-lovers are stimulated when they hear the word coffee.  Nutritionally, its a completely different playing field. My focus here isn't on how coffee nourishes but to begin a conversation about the effect of creating a cup (or four) may be equally gratifying without drinking it.…
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What It Takes To Sleep

What It Takes To Sleep

Physical
Our sleep patterns are effected by stress, our daily activities and prep-for-bed routines. Here's what it takes to sleep by visiting our sleep environments: The National Sleep Foundation Sleep Report Card states that 90% people watch TV before going to bed, 33% are on the computer.  Their Fact Sheet states the bedroom is for two things only: sleep and sex. Their tip: Create a sleep-conducive environment that is dark, quiet and comfortable. Think window treatment fabric and quality, materials to dampen sound (i.e.: carpet, wall insulation, noise-reduction product). Know sleep and rest are an occupation you're responsible for. Understand your sensory needs then create sleep and rest environments to support an ease into sleep, to maintain sleep without disturbance, to accomplish a full night (7 to 8 hours) of sleep. Examples of sensory…
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One of These Three Stress Responses Will Empower You To Boost Performance

One of These Three Stress Responses Will Empower You To Boost Performance

HR Academy, Occupational
While sitting at your desk, working in the kitchen...in every task and environment your senses are bombarded. All information comes to us through sensory input. An average of 2,000 bits of information per second enters our brain (Willis 2009). Although, everyone processes through this information differently. Our senses first sift through all of it before it even reaches our awareness.  Neurologically our body organizes then attempts to adjust its reaction to an impulse. Modulation provides a behavior that safely adapts to the stress of change with less risks on health. Everyone responds to stress differently. Knowing how your senses respond may empower you to boost performance: Some of us are hypersensitive or sensory over-responders, in which we react to sensations faster and stronger than those with normal response levels (Reynolds and Jane 2007).  These…
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How Sounds Reclaim Life, Boosts Performance, and Surrenders Agony

How Sounds Reclaim Life, Boosts Performance, and Surrenders Agony

HR Academy, Intellectual
One good thing about music, when it hits you, you feel no pain.  BOB MARLEY Our inner ear provides us with a lot of information about the world around us. This sound travels through the ear by means of the auditory nerve, then to be processed by our brain. Even if we were blindfolded, we would be able to identify if we were in a large stadium versus a small confined room based on the sounds and how that sound travels through space. Music has the ability to produce an orienting response. Sounds reclaim life, boosts performance, and energizes perception. Picture grandma dropping a pan and automatically everyone in the room turns to see what it is - they orient towards that sound. Although we usually view loud noises as environmental…
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Undo Cruel Food Obsession. Seize Life With These Five Tactics.

Undo Cruel Food Obsession. Seize Life With These Five Tactics.

Physical
The day began with a mess of disorganization. Our team was out of synch and it cost valuable time. Every hour that morning another issue arose. The climax was financial catastrophe! This stress lead the team to emotional behaviors which created a different kind of work. Internal body regulating and mind work. The challenge was to remain calm through it all. Being overwhelmed with stressful feelings causes confusion. Emotions are a vital part of us to sort through problem-solving.  Suffering rears emotions from childhood experiences then initiates personal boundaries - healthy or unhealthy. Our primal instinct is to act for safety in seeking feelings of comfort. Feelings are stimulated by our senses. Our behavior is the reaction. Often people express a reaction by being "full of" an overwhelming feeling. "I'm full of excitement!"…
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Food Can Be A Trigger

Food Can Be A Trigger

Physical
It is that season when there is always something baking in the oven or a tea kettle boiling for tea or cocoa. Family mealtimes are emphasized and social gatherings are regularly scheduled. The work offices are stocked up with cookies or treats in shining, foil wrappers. Holiday treats and celebrations bring a sense of community, nurture our bodies and feed our soul. But what about those who have difficulties or disordered eating habits? The increase in food can be a trigger or stir up anxieties. Recently, I found out a person very close to me was having such difficulties.  She reported always having such emotional pain followed by physical pain of overeating and then ultimately this effected her self-worth.  This was difficult to discuss and shows bravery on her part.…
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Everyday Functioning For Kids and Adults With Sensory Concerns

Everyday Functioning For Kids and Adults With Sensory Concerns

Social
Life is constantly changing around us.  Things like the temperature, lighting, and noises are always being processed.  Although a lot of this happens on an autonomic level, for persons with sensory processing concerns, standing still can be overwhelming and effect everyday function. Occupational therapist Catherine Armani-Munn, MS OTR/L explores the challenges of everyday functioning for kids and adults with sensory concerns. Bethany: What year & where did you graduate? Catherine: I graduated from Keuka College in a 5 yr masters program.  My undergrad was in Occupational Science and in 2010 I graduated with my masters in Occupational Therapy. I also got a minor in ASL (American Sign Language) in college which has helped me a lot in the field, especially working with the autism population. Bethany: What is  your background and…
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When It All Becomes Overwhelming and You Start to Shut Down

When It All Becomes Overwhelming and You Start to Shut Down

Feature
Sometimes I'm scared of my body.  I'm not always sure what pains I will wake up to or what thoughts will wander into my head or even what colors will come out of my nose.  This past year, I've become more in tune with this while living in the Mojave desert.  Lake Havasu City is a very different climate compared to back east - coming in at about 10-18% humidity according to my hermit crabs' barometer.  This has left me at times dehydrated, congested, raspy, and/or wiped out.  Nonetheless, it has helped me become very aware of any changes internally and how the environment affects me. This is something I'm glad I'm beginning to realize now.  It's important knowing who you are and how you react under the most trying…
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