How To Recognize Which Skills Make Life Harder

How To Recognize Which Skills Make Life Harder

WholeBe Toolkit
Every day we are naturally a part of stories revealing the best or worst skills. Activities, including storytelling, share which skill sharpened in lieu of another. Do you know which skills make life harder for you? When we experience unhappiness, frequent illness or other life hardening conditions we are likely sharpening the culprits.  cer] When in doubt, probably a quick measure could be Google or peer opinions. Google's loyalties are your search history. Ask a peer? Might be a white lie! More so, what if they are...WRONG? Christine Porath studied nearly 20,000 employees and 54% said they don't get regular respect from their leaders. Which pipeline do you believe is the most genuine resource here: the leader, the employees, or the researcher? Pick a skill that's not your healthiest. On a scale from 1 (least) to 10 (most) where does it…
Read More
15 Insights on How To Train Your Brain

15 Insights on How To Train Your Brain

Intellectual
Do you adhere daily to the fact that all you surround yourself with PLUS what you ingest trains or alters your brain? The optimistic person we share a space with, the composition of brass instruments in music, or salad verses fries can make all the difference. Cognitive science is linking biology with cultural experiences. Science is teaching us how to train our brain, so we are exploring the research. Below are questions, links, and action steps equaling 15 insights on how to train your brain to live healthy. Here Is What You Hear April science news shared a new part of the brain was revealed through auditory testing. Scientists say our brain has neuroplasticity. This leaves us with new evidence supporting the ability to change the way we think, feel,…
Read More
A Seamstress Exhibiting Stress In The Workplace

A Seamstress Exhibiting Stress In The Workplace

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. Under-responsiveness 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.…
Read More
Is Your Employer Providing Sick Care or Health Care?

Is Your Employer Providing Sick Care or Health Care?

Workplace
There is a jolting difference in cultural motivation on 'sick care' and 'health care'. Sick care is reactionary, providing individuals support with onset of an injury, health or mental conditions. Sick care recipients pay for medical bills instead of luxuries. Their employers pay for loss of production or new hire training. Health care recipients pay for health resources that reduce the onset of uncommunicable diseases, depression, injury. Their employers pay out bonuses and employee rewards due to improved profit. Is your employer providing sick care or health care? Move health care awareness from knowledge to action. Sharing stories on health movement builds the belief its possible. The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation shared several stories of national communities that acted on health care. It's understood raw data in percentages or dollar signs build…
Read More
20 Questions For Sleep Awareness

20 Questions For Sleep Awareness

Physical
In response to the statement "employers can educate shift workers about how to improve sleep" in the NBC Health's reveal we aren't getting enough sleep, here are 20 questions to get started. Answers are provided at the end. How many hours of sleep per night do you suspect the average American gets during the week? How do you think this ranked with the other countries: Japan, UK, Germany, Canada, Mexico? How about on the weekend: U.S., Japan, U.K., Germany, Canada, Mexico? Questionnaire respondents were asked: How much sleep do you need to function best? What do you suspect they answered: U.S., Japan, U.K., Germany, Canada, Mexico? What do you think differences existed amongst different countries? How does culture effect sleep? How many hours of sleep are recommended for adults ages 18-64? How about older adults…
Read More
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…
Read More
B.E.I.N.G. Is To Boldly Exist in Necessary Growth

B.E.I.N.G. Is To Boldly Exist in Necessary Growth

Occupational
Comfort and safety are needs we seek for wellbeing in the workplace, relationships, and home. Who's the expert defining your sense of belief in what is 'safe' or has 'comfort'? Some might say its the leader in a culture. Others may argue its trend-led. There are marketing messages, spiritual guides, and slogans that manifest the idea of what's comfortable and safe. My clinical and design work deduce all theories to this: the expert is the Experience. "If you're comfortable in life then you're not maturing." Anonymous Humans instinctually seek to feel safe but stretching outside of comfort may compromise quality of life beliefs. B.E.I.N.G. are five points for safety and comfort strategies that may improve performance and manage stress.  Here's how to Boldly Exist In Necessary Growth: Boldly   Occupational Justice is the…
Read More
One Toilet Paper Square Improves Performance

One Toilet Paper Square Improves Performance

Intellectual
Health experts often recommend routines to build healthy habits. What do you do when the unexpected destructs that routine diet, exercise plan, or stress relief plan? Enter: toilet paper. We use it routinely. It's designed to roll, to tear, for comfort, for hygiene, and for biodegradable properties that keep plumbing free from clogs. Do these features come to mind every time you spin a roll of TP? If this analogy makes you uncomfortable then its likely you have sensitivities worthy to explore. This link connects to experts trained in sensitivity endeavors. Awareness is necessary to engage in a task. Performance outcomes depend on insight and awareness. Toilet paper is a universal reality. Most may agree its an intuitive product, no instruction required. So, do you measure use with the perforation? And how does measuring T.P. squares affect your…
Read More
Work Has Fragile Elements

Work Has Fragile Elements

Spiritual
Wellbeing is something I learned late in life. It was easier to avoid adversity by following desires for comfort. When I was a child I climbed a tree to escape. Avoidance behaviors kept me from becoming who I was meant to be. Here and now I'm profoundly thankful. Especially with reflection of people and experiences life brought. Awareness of each moment slowly drew me away from avoidance through comfort-seeking to becoming more aware of purpose-seeking. Wellbeing began with accepting I fall short. It taught me compassion, forgiveness, and to creatively self-express within all my life roles. Often I reflect on my ancestors and family influences. My grandfathers humbly invented or crafted objects. My grandmothers breathed a lineage of faith and morals into each of us. Dad was an engineer and academic while Mom's discipline…
Read More
Reclaim Joy In A Jubilant Quality of Life

Reclaim Joy In A Jubilant Quality of Life

WholeBe Toolkit
Below is a testimony 180 days following GIG Design's support... One of the reasons why I moved to the Pacific Northwest is because of the trees. Trees are everywhere - both beautiful and relatable. A tree must have been meticulously chosen for the WholeBe Toolkit. Its a visual metaphor that returns as a wellbeing tool to help one envision themselves at their greatest potential. I never thought of comparing myself as a tree. Organically, humans and plants are built so differently, but who's to say we can't learn from one another. Each gives in the exchange for being alive. One example is carbon dioxide gives fresh air to breathing plants; plants generously exchange it with oxygen for us. This is one magnificent exchange that is quick to forget. When I look…
Read More
Reacting to Stress

Reacting to Stress

Physical
This past weekend while on a walk my converse slipped on a bank covered with wet leaves. Friends and I had a good belly laugh due to the sight and unexpectedness of it all.  If I relived that experience with out my friends beside me I wouldn't have laughed. As an infant we learn how to protect our body from falls, how to react to words or people's tone of voice, and how to interact while in different moods. These are all learned behaviors. Reactions to stress stem from learned childhood behaviors. Let's use stairs as a metaphor.  To our physical needs we need to balance on one foot in order to lift the other in motion upward or downward. Eventually both feet land on one surface. Much the same,…
Read More
Distorted Thinking

Distorted Thinking

Emotional
Have you been educated on what a healthy relationship is? My parents modeled valuable aspects but they didn't sit me down as teachers of Relationships 101.  When I decided to research what 'healthy from the inside out' meant, I began to experience what healthy relating is. Healthy begins with an honest self assessment. It requires being prepared because it is a life-long journey. I say this because it takes work, time and awareness to identify then replace distorted information that your mind believes as truth...but it can be done. There are many layers to living honestly but here I expose a near-time experience known as distorted thinking. Author and professor Benjamin K. Bergen explains in his book Louder than Words that we simulate experiences, actions and performances in our mind through a scientifically…
Read More
Design The Will to Act

Design The Will to Act

Intellectual
Occupational therapy practitioners are found in a variety of industries outside of health care, including automotive, architecture and non-profit sectors. Jim Burns is a major in the U.S. Army as well as chief of O.T. at Evans Army Community Hospital in Fort Carson, Colorado. He quoted Max Depree to support his opinion of what the key aspect of leadership is: selfless service. The first responsibility of a leader is to define reality; the last is to say ‘Thank you.’ In between the two, the leader must become a servant. MAX DEPREE Burns integrates an abridged version of the U.S. Army's leadership development philosophy, which he goes into more detail about in his article about defining reality.  His philosophy includes seven values: Discipline, Motivation, Altruism, Physical Fitness, Continuing Education, Creativity, Respectful. Within these values he emphasized behavior patterns, goal setting, and communication. Each requires…
Read More
Active Listening in Cultural Differences

Active Listening in Cultural Differences

Social
Right in the the middle of an important task that has a deadline you get interrupted by your Fellow. What do you do? This scenario begs for the least amount of listening. Some may just use a body gesture, like a hand in the air without diverting the eyes from task. This action isn't a normal listening behavior. Active listening in cultural differences fosters healthy relationships. C'mon, giving the hand is on the selfish side of relaying information. (Grohol 2013) One might hope those that interrupt would pause in anticipation for a body gesture of approval. This isn't always the case. This is a social dilemma which happens in a variety of occupational scenarios. Let's look at an example of cultural diversity when in play - like a break from work…
Read More
Eyes on Screens

Eyes on Screens

Occupational
This last week I've spent more time on my computer than usual.  I have certainly felt accomplished but after a few days in a row, I realized my eyes hurt.  For many working people, staring at a computer for several hours is the norm in the workplace. That means, hours of screen time not including late night television binges, texts to friends, or surfing the net for recipes. Some side effects of all this time spent with our eyes on screens can be eye strain, headaches, or vision changes. If continued long term it can lead to potential health risks. Below are some strategies for screen time usage: CONTEXT Connect -meet in an environment that supports listening to a person instead of texting; be certain any screen is at least 20-40 inches away; invest…
Read More
Reading and Visual Fatigue: A Personal Journey

Reading and Visual Fatigue: A Personal Journey

Design Diary
It took me awhile to figure out why I hated wearing my glasses, why my eyes got so tired as a young girl.  I was born with medial strabismus, a hereditary trait that causes cross-eye.  With modern day surgical techniques I was able to follow family footsteps in correcting ocular alignment. My brother's surgery resulted with an eye infection. Subsequently, he had permanent damage with blindness in one eye for his lifetime. My 'cosmetic' surgery was considered successful, still risky, leaving me with residual visual issues. One is intermittent reading. As a toddler I wore eye glasses or eye patches and followed the nagging of my mother to do eye exercises. These techniques strengthened my ocular muscles.  At one years old I had my first surgical procedure. The second at age sixteen brought self confidence…
Read More
Talking to Yourself

Talking to Yourself

Social
First mail out those letters sitting on the table, make dinner, and take the dog out. Then think about the rest of my life. Those thoughts became words quickly without hesitation one day. I didn’t even realize I had said them until they were muttered. They were reassuring, focusing words that lead to true responsiveness. Talking to yourself throughout our day is not abnormal. In fact, there is even a term that defines this phenomenon known as private speech. We often learn to do it as kids. Kids talk to themselves while playing.  It serves as an important part of their development. As we get older, it allows us to cement memories or visualize what we are thinking. Buy carrots for the soup. Oh those keys..hmmm. Sometimes it helps us socially.  When we come up with…
Read More
Regulating Your Own Emotions

Regulating Your Own Emotions

Emotional
Within hours of drafting this, the emotional stories from those I love fell on my heart. It's unsettling to listen to the ache in a loved ones voice. The pain conveyed in expressing their dilemma is palpable. How do you help? If it's your emotional dilemma, what do you do? Strip those pre-conceived ideas of meditation to fully understand the health benefits. Research continues to flood us with data on necessary development of our brain function. Meditation supports regulating your own emotions by helping the brain handle various dilemmas like the following: pain tolerance, emotional control, feelings of tension, external distractions, fear of unknowns, physical issues, absenteeism, awareness of genetic diseases. For emotional wellbeing consider how and what you invest your time and resources in. These add up as ways we medicate suffering or celebrate purpose. The investments to medicate with 'things' pays out…
Read More
As We Get Older

As We Get Older

Spiritual
This last week before going for a hike I had thoughts enter my head about the following: mud, the dog, making my own trail, and poor boots.  Before starting the hike, I had judgments. This anticipatory, automatic notion of how it has been in the past, how it should be, and what will make the car completely muddy were flooding my mind. At that moment, I paused.  Where had my excitement and intent gone? Isn’t the whole purpose of a hike to let go, be out in nature, gently make your own path, and be open to the world around you? I trudged along but that concept of "beginner’s mind" was one with steady reoccurrence later that week. "Beginner’s mind" is when we approach something with curiosity, newness, and openness. We become…
Read More
What does rhythmic pattern mean?

What does rhythmic pattern mean?

Intellectual
Recently a client passionately shared the fact that everything has and needs rhythm. He had many illustrations to support his thought-provoking and scientifically proven theory. However, his suggestion that I was a product of rhythm, the movement of my parents having sex, struck me. I reflected on the melodic and beautifully comforting concept of the moment of conception. If I had seen that point of view earlier, I would have been more merciful toward my dad and mom.  I do my best to consider their sacrifices through my childhood but sometimes I'll remind myself of my girlish, manipulative behaviors to refresh my deep gratitude.  I matured and love my parents for who they are. Within that truth, I'm nourished and able to love myself plus others. Just days after my…
Read More
Tolerate Silence

Tolerate Silence

Spiritual
Dr. Steven Aung and Dr. Badri Rickhi are health care professionals positioning mental and spiritual wellness as a mind/body necessity. Stress reduction programs, adapting the body to nature, and being aware of the senses are three things they believe help achieve spiritual and mental health. Are you able to tolerate silence or very low music sounds? Our rational and emotional brains steer our reactions. We have a "window of tolerance", as Dr. Bessel van der Kolk call it. If we are hyper-aroused or shut down, then we disengage from that moment of time. Neuroscience research repeatedly points to self-awareness as the most effective way to change emotional IQ. Silence and music are no strangers to self-awareness. Our soul directly links to our mind. It changes the harmony inside our self. Van der…
Read More
Moods – When can you be the real you?

Moods – When can you be the real you?

Emotional
Are you 'tired' and you can't nap in the middle of work hours? Are you 'hungry' and you can't eat in class? Are you 'irated' while you are in a traffic jam while trying to drop your kids off at school? We identify these scenarios of time, place, and body response as elements to lifestyles. Genuine feelings may be masked when its perceived the mood doesn't fit the time or place. There are environments where stress increases if feedback is honest instead of agreeable. Mood is subjective. Emotional responses may be genuine with practice, time, and awareness to body responses. Skilled active listeners and emotional well individuals are aware of genuine and false emotional responses. Sensory sensitive human beings are roughly 20% of the population (Acevedo 2014). Those who rarely trust…
Read More
Tolerance in Day to Day Life

Tolerance in Day to Day Life

WholeBe Toolkit
The word "tolerance" is used in many ways. On the largest of scales, we have seen it used as a stepping stone for social issues.  Change begins with tolerance then leads to awareness of differences, integration, and celebration of these differences. What role does tolerance play in your day to day life? Sometimes it is a bad movie, or  the extra pile of laundry.  You fit in an extra errand in before making it home.  Often these little areas are “tolerated” but is that enough?  To go day-in-day-out just tolerating may be limiting us in the long run.  One day, a stack of laundry may be the final straw that causes you to snap.  The bad movie may turn into frustration overload.  The extra errand could lead to exhaustion, falling asleep at the wheel, or…
Read More
Write, Speak, Or Draw to Reduce Stress

Write, Speak, Or Draw to Reduce Stress

Social
Last week a group of women I socialize with began to discuss relational stress. By sharing our experiences, we learned the cause of our core stress was poor communication. The countless ways to immediately contact one another today including the computer, cell phone, landline, and various wireless signals are taking the place of connecting in person. Our conversation covered how we move less from one floor to another within a building, a home, or a drive across town. Rarely do we use our pencils, paper, and scissors. Most of us turn to social media to respond to others. Anxiety is rising and social media is one mechanism that is pulling the trigger. 40 million American adults fall into debilitating uncertainty or fear (NIMH). In the midst of our feelings we…
Read More
Be Willing to Get Messy In Life

Be Willing to Get Messy In Life

Intellectual
Twenty-four hours before buying an airline ticket to return back to my home state, a wise man shared a valuable message. Words I needed to hear that moment. Essentially, be willing to get messy in life to gain in life. Performance building is to step forward into unknowns. Fearful moments help us build relationships, share our purpose, and become our best self. The following is a brief summary how our senses trigger in the messiness of life: Build Relationships "Good teaching is interactive. It engages the child individually. " Malcolm Gladwell coined the Stickiness Factor towards a tipping point. Here he identifies building relationships to a child's learning process (which is similar to adult's). "It uses all the senses. It responds to the child...once the advice became practical and personal,…
Read More
Awareness of the Passage of Time

Awareness of the Passage of Time

Intellectual
Awareness of the passage of time will determine how you spend your time. "Even in the absence of time pressure, maintaining a coherent train of thought requires discipline." Awareness of the passage of time requires intellectual work. It's easy to get distracted by your surroundings. The above is a quote from the book "Thinking Fast and Slow" by Daniel Kahneman. His research (identified as 'system 2') on awareness shines light on why we make certain decisions. Kahneman writes, "People who are cognitively busy are also more likely to make selfish choices, use sexist language, and make superficial judgments in social situations. Memorizing and repeating digits loosens the hold of System 2 on behavior, but of course cognitive load is not the only cause of weakened self-control. A few drinks have…
Read More
Loyalty in Life

Loyalty in Life

WholeBe Toolkit
The word "loyalty" has deep roots. "Loyalty in life" involves perception and emotion. It's similar to allegiance and includes a sense of duty. At times our behavior isn't loyal to our values. Like snapping at someone you love because you are sleep deprived or hungry. This is an example of how loyalty can waver due to poor self-regulation. Sleep is one of the first things to go as a result of job deadlines, travel or family obligations. Anxiety becomes the antagonist to lack of loyalty! GIG Design's WholeBeSM method recognizes the following six core aspects: Physical Occupational Intellectual Spiritual Social Emotional The first step is to recognize your self-regulation issues. Loyalty in life directly affects your health, your relationships, and your success. Creative Wellbeing begins with our WholeBe Toolkits. Read more…
Read More
Selflessness as Free Medicine

Selflessness as Free Medicine

Occupational
When you get stuck in a rut and are so so stressed out how do you feel? At a pivotal point in my life ten years ago my feelings kicked me into action mode. I believed the stride required being alone but chose environments that supported healthy healing to cope through the stress. Loneliness lengthened my healing process. We are relational beings. Once I learned a method to break down self-judgement and shame I slowly invited others into my life. This action taught selflessness. Lets look at how research supports selflessness as free medicine to mind, body, soul. Giving or sharing is an innate feeling (Brown 2003). Like all other behaviors it requires acting on the feeling over time to become a skill, habit, pattern. Sharing space with others improves the…
Read More
Provoke Approval With This Assuring Body Posture

Provoke Approval With This Assuring Body Posture

Social
Have you lived within a culture that isn't your own? Over the years I've been personally challenged through unfamiliar cultures. A few examples of cultures I need to adapt to includes an indian reservation, farming community, tourist town, and middle-eastern religions. Beyond the smells, language or customs just transitioning from a geographical move is tough! Overcoming adversity presents two choices: be open to it, or deny it. Choosing which path is the power that ultimately steers life health. Forethought is a natural impulse that digs into personal values, morals, and beliefs. That of openness or denial begins the body, mind and spirit path. Even choosing an openness to drink from a new water source goest through the natural impulse of forethought. It subjects the digestive system to work through a new…
Read More
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…
Read More
How Sounds Reclaim Life, Boosts Performance, and Surrenders Agony

How Sounds Reclaim Life, Boosts Performance, and Surrenders Agony

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…
Read More
What Is The Culprit to Behaviors You Want To Stop?

What Is The Culprit to Behaviors You Want To Stop?

Emotional
History is an incredible occurrence that shapes everything to stand with remarkable uniqueness. How often do you stop to consider something or someone's history? An example of a 'something' are words. Vocabulary history is acquired through selective listening and reading or engrained through cultural norms. The history of common words - like connection, originated with different spelling (connectere) then morph from their homeland (Latin - connexio) into new cultures (English - connect). In consideration of the history of 'someone' a form of history measurement may be through behaviors. Behavior responses may change as demonstrated by designs preferred, the slang spoken, the people or cultures valued for purposeful sharing. Behaviors lead to daily choices and then return as life history. The history of brain growth shares commonalities with the life of the 'something' and 'someone'…
Read More