Monday, June 20, 2016
Less Noise, Better World - Breathing Space Blog
“The high noise of modern life may affect speech and language development in the very young, according to a study that found the auditory parts of the brains of young mice are slower to organize properly in the presence of continuous sounds.
Researchers at the University of California, San Francisco, reared a group of rats in an environment of continuous background noise and found that their brain circuits that receive and interpret sound did not develop at the same rate as animals that were raised in a quieter environment
Edward F. Chang and Michael Merzenich, co-authors of the study appearing in the journal Science, said that the continuous noise delayed the organization of auditory neurons during a critical two- to three-week period after the rat pups were born.
Although the rat is not a perfect model for what happens in humans, the authors note, the study does suggest that high levels of noise might possibly affect some language learning in infants.
"These findings suggest that environmental noise, which is commonly present in contemporary child-rearing environments, can potentially contribute to auditory and language-related development delays," the authors write in Science. The authors noted that although the brain development was delayed in rats exposed to the noise, their brains did eventually mature normally.”
Labels: children, development, mental development, noise, study
Wednesday, June 15, 2016
Affirmations to Get Things Done - Breathing Space Blog
# I choose to be open to new ways of doing things
# I choose to acknowledge the accomplishments of others.
# I choose to stay connected to the creative process.
# I choose to retain that which supports me easily.
# I choose to reach for the highest that is within me
# I choose to maintain clarity in my work and my life.
Labels: accomplish, affirmation, clarity, creativity, lifestyle, self-esteem, work
Tuesday, June 07, 2016
Older but Happier! - Breathing Space Blog
Perhaps the best news I've ever relayed: more happiness
may come with age. According to a study reported
# Older adults, may be better able avoid stressful situations which may mean less negative emotion
# They also may limit the time spent thinking about negative aspects of a situation
# Memory may also contribute to older adults' positive emotional state
Labels: aging, emotions, happiness, health, old, positive, stress
Friday, June 03, 2016
Over-dependency on Technology - Breathing Space Blog
Writing in the New York Times
, David Brooks offered a brilliant article years back called "The Outsourced Brain," wherein he described how today's technology is aiding some people in abdicating from everyday decisions, and worse, even from basic thinking.
"The gurus seek bliss amidst mountaintop solitude and serenity in the meditative trance," he writes, "but I, grasshopper, have achieved the oneness with the universe that is known as pure externalization.
"I have melded my mind with the heavens, communed with the universal consciousness, and experienced the inner calm that externalization brings, and it all started because I bought a car with a G.P.S."
"Like many men, I quickly established a romantic attachment to my G.P.S. I found comfort in her tranquil and slightly Anglophilic voice. I felt warm and safe following her thin blue line. More than once I experienced her mercy, for each of my transgressions would be greeted by nothing worse than a gentle, Make a U-turn if possible.”
"After a few weeks, it occurred to me that I could no longer get anywhere without her. Any trip slightly out of the ordinary had me typing the address into her system and then blissfully following her satellite-fed commands. I found that I was quickly shedding all vestiges of geographic knowledge
Labels: article, attachment, calm, dependence, mental alertness, technology
Tuesday, May 24, 2016
Within Your Grasp: Work-Life Balance - Breathing Space Blog
Work-Life Balance is within your grasp, and it all starts with the realization that the resources you assemble must meet or exceed your on-going challenges. If not you will feel perpetually behind.
Several disciplines support work-life balance, though individually, none are synonymous with work-life balance:
* Self Management
* Time Management
* Stress Management
* Change Management
* Technology Management
* Leisure Management
1) Self Management
Sufficiently managing one's self can be challenging, particularly in getting proper sleep, exercise, and nutrition. Self-management is the recognition that effectively using the spaces in our lives is vital, and that life, time, and available resources are finite. It means becoming captain of our own ship: no one is coming to steer for us.
2) Time Management
Effective time management involves making optimal use of your day and the supporting resources that can be summoned, for you can only keep pace when your resources match your challenges. Time management is enhanced by creating appropriate goals and discerning what is both important and urgent versus what is important OR urgent. It entails understanding what you do best and when you do it best, and assembling the appropriate tools to accomplish specific tasks.
3) Stress Management
By nature, societies tend to become more complex over time. In the face of increasing complexity, stress on the individual is inevitable. More people, more noise, and more distractions – independent of one's individual circumstances – require each of us to become more adept at maintaining tranquility and being able to work ourselves out of pressure-filled situations. Most forms of multi-tasking ultimately increase our stress, while focusing on one thing at a time helps decrease stress.
4) Change Management
In our fast-paced world, change is virtually the only constant. Continually adopting new methods, adapting old methods, and re-adapting all methods are vital to a successful career and a happy home life. Effective change management involves offering periodic and concentrated efforts, so that the volume and rate of change at work and at home does not overwhelm or defeat you.
5) Technology Management
Effectively managing technology requires ensuring that technology serves rather than abuses you. Technology has always been with us, since the first walking stick, spear, flint, and wheel. Today, the rate of technological change is accelerating, brought on by vendors who seek to expand their market share. Often, you have no choice but to keep up with the technological "Joneses;" still, you rule technology – don't let it rule you.
6) Leisure Management
The most overlooked of the work-life balance supporting disciplines, leisure management acknowledges the importance of rest and relaxation – that one can't short-change leisure, and that "time off" is a vital component of the human experience. Curiously, too much of the same leisure activity, however enjoyable, can lead to monotony. Thus, effective leisure management requires varying one's activities.
Labels: balance, home, life, self-management, stress. change. leisure, technology, time, work
Sunday, May 15, 2016
Get Creative - Breathing Space Blog
Notes from the wonderful book, The Artist's Way
, by Julia Cameron:
* Creativity is the natural order of life. Life is energy, pure creative energy.
* There is an underlying, creative force infusing all of life -- including ourselves.
* When we open ourselves to our creativity, we open ourselves to the creator's creativity within us and our lives.
* We are, ourselves, creation. And we, in turn, are meant to continue creativity by being creative ourselves.
* The refusal to be creative is self-will and is counter to our true nature.
* As we open our creative channel to the creator, many gentle but powerful changes
are to be expected.
* It is safe to open ourselves up to greater and greater creativity.
* Our creative dreams and yearnings come from a divine source.
Labels: advice, books, creative, creativity, divine, life
Tuesday, May 10, 2016
Eight Tips for Emergency Preparedness - Breathing Space Blog
* Create and make several copies of a master list that includes all key client, speaker, family, and emergency phone numbers.
* Keep fully stocked first aid kits in your home and in your office.
* Maintain a flashlight, fully charged batteries, candles, and matches or a cigarette lighter.
* Store at least five gallons of water sealed tightly in plastic containers.
* Stash away a four to six day supply of non-perishable foods.
* Check your smoke alarm to ensure that it's functional.
* Learn how to shut off the water, electricity, and gas supply to your home and office.
* Keep $300 to 400 on hand in small bills, as well as several rolls of quarters.
Labels: aid, emergency, list, perishable, prepare, stock, supply