Morecambe and Wise came into my mind this morning along with the song, “Bring me sunshine” which they used to sing at the end of every show (for those who don’t know them, they were a comedy duo on UK television in the ’70s – that’s the 1970s – so last century!!). Their song and dance routine always made me giggle, especially the silly little skipping dance at the end.
What’s at the heart of all this? Sunshine! Light! Laughter! I had glanced at my wall calendar for June 2018 this morning and noticed that I had drawn in a big sun symbol on the majority of the days. This is something I do to uplift my spirits on a low day, so I thought I’d share some more sunny, silly ideas with you today.
So, why not think, say or do something silly to bring a smile to your face and help lift the spirits of others. Here are a few suggestions for you (I’d love to hear yours! I’m always on the look-out for good ideas):
watch a short Morecambe and Wise video on YouTube (any will make you giggle)
find a really good joke (from a book, or google (?) and share it with others). Here’s one:
draw a big sun on the calendar if it’s a beautiful sunny day, and colour it in with yellow highlighter. Encourage others to do likewise. Here’s my calendar for June:
record your pet snoring and share with your friends or on social media.
see the funny side in everything today. Laugh out loud as often as you can. It may freak people out, but it will be infectious. Check out laughter therapy.
Make it your mission to get others to smile/laugh today. eg: smile at them; compliment them; hold the door for them; give them some chocolate. Share your results with us / others.
Follow your intuition. If you see something that you think will make someone smile/laugh, don’t hesitate with excuses. Just make them a gift of it and brighten up their and your day.
I leave you with this iconic song from ELO, Mr Blue Sky. Just click on the image below to listen, and have a happy, sunny day! Anita.😎
April 22nd is Earth Day 2018 and the campaign being highlighted this year is ending plastic pollution. There’s an excellent pdf to read through if you want much more information on how the plastic we produce and throw away is seriously damaging our world, our marine life and ourselves. Here’s the link to the downloadable pdf: Earth-Day-plastic-pollution-pdf.
What can we as individuals do to make a difference?
If you don’t do already, RECYCLE all your household waste, using the recycling bins provided by your local Council waste department. If you don’t recycle, all your waste goes into landfill and can take hundreds of years to break down – and some of it never does. Leave a nicer present to your children and grandchildren by helping to reduce the mountains of landfill rubbish.
Much of our plastic packaging comes from food shopping. When you are next at the supermarket, try these suggestions:
pick the fresh produce which is not wrapped in plastic.
favour glass and canned packaging over plastic.
Ask supermarket staff for paper bags to place unwrapped fruit and vegetables in. If we keep pestering supermarkets, they eventually change their ways to retain our custom.
Take your own reusable non-plastic shopper bags to pack your food at the checkout.
Ask the supermarket manager when they will be introducing “plastic free aisles” such as those in Ekoplaza Dutch supermarket stores. Plastic-free means using alternatives to plastic packaging – compostable biomaterials made from plants and trees.
Ask when they will eliminate plastic packaging in their own-brand products, as one UK frozen-food supermarket chain (Iceland) has already pledged to do by 2023.
Use bio-bags (100% compostable and biodegradable; made from corn starch) for home bin liners and doggy poop bags. I buy mine online but some local Councils have a supply of bio dog poop bags which you can uplift for free.
If, like me, you don’t like the metallic taste of water straight from the tap, you could consider buying a filter tap for your kitchen sink rather than buying bottled water. I’ve only just started researching these filter taps and they seem very expensive!!! So, the search continues.
Stop buying antibacterial cleaners, complete with plastic packaging. A study carried out by the BBC television programme Trust Me, I’m a Doctor showed that bacteria grow back within 20 minutes of using antibac products, and that soap and water were much more effective at keeping bacteria at bay for longer. There’s a good article in The Telegraph about this. I’ve also started using bicarbonate of soda mixed with a little water to make a paste. I wipe this all over the surface to be cleaned (it’s great for restoring a stained sink to sparkling white!), leave a few minutes, then wipe off. It’s really effective. If you add vinegar, it reacts with the bicarbonate of soda and fizzes as you clean. Who knew cleaning could be such fun.
I hope you’ve found some of these suggestions useful and food for thought. If you’d like to share any of yours with others, please do leave your comments. Anita.
What a lovely review of my book from the fabulous https://beinglydia.com. Why not check out her blogsite. It’s so uplifting!
“Acts Of Kindness from Your Armchair” (RAOK) by Anita Neilson is a very easy read. At the same time, it is full of practical and easy ways to show kindness to yourself and those around you.
Anita is writing for those of us who, like herself, are mostly housebound due to chronic illness. How can you feel kindness toward yourself when you are isolated and not feeling well? How can you reap the benefit of helping others to feel better about yourself if you aren’t able to get out amongst other people? This book shows you how through suggestions and practical applications.
Part one is dedicated to learning to be kind to yourself. Anita talks about …….”
Click on the link below to read the full review. Thank you Lydia!
I am so delighted that my most recent article has been published on the fabulous Edge Magazine. Click the link below to take you directly to the article on their site. Hope you enjoy it (estimated reading time 3 mins). Have a great day. Anita.
September is Fibromyalgia Awareness raising month in the UK. I want to share with you the 10 things I do better now that I have fibro! If you don’t know what fibromyalgia is, it’s an illness categorized by constant pain in muscles, joints, nerves as well as overwhelming fatigue at the slightest activity. I have had fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome (M.E.) for around 9 years. I’ve run the gamut of emotions in that time, but now I make it my intention to focus on the positive every day (and some days that can be so difficult, but we know, don’t we, that we have to ride the storm of bad days in the knowledge that the following day will be better for sure!). In this spirit of positivity, here’s a chart tabling what I can no longer do and what I do in its place. I’d be interested in your feedback! I hope it’s helpful.
What I can no longer do:
Here’s what I do instead:
I take a few moments to visualize swimming and immersing myself in the peace that it can still bring me in my imagination. I wrote a lovely post about just this: Inner-stillness-the-joyful-soul-dance
2. Go for long walks
Go for short walks! We go to our local park in the evening and walk along the tree-shaded riverbank for a few minutes. It’s so relaxing. We stop and chat to other dog walkers; we take in gulps of the freshest of air; we peer through the trees to catch sight of the deer. We delight in nature for the short time that we are out in it. Start small and build up a little more each time. I sit out in the garden for a few minutes each day too to bathe my bones with rays of healing sunshine.
3. Hold down a full-time job
Request a job-share or go part-time, although firstly take a really hard look at your finances to see if you can afford to cut your working hours. If you can, be so grateful that you can and make the right choice for your health. There are plenty of opportunities for volunteering to help others, and I have found that when we are engrossed in helping others, we forget about our pain for a while.
4. Heavy housework
I was unable to do any housework at the beginning of my illness (not so much of a hardship!). Now I am able to do light housework such as 10 mins of dusting or tidying up. Hubby does the heavy work like vacuuming and emptying bins. If you live alone, ask for help from your neighbours or friends. Employ a cleaner once a week if you can. This is also good company for you, especially if you are mostly housebound like me. If you really miss housework (!), you could always spend a few quiet moments visualizing how wonderful it was. Lol!
5. Concentrate in the afternoons
I do any writing in the mornings because I know this is the time I am most alert. For others, it may be the afternoons. Do any paperwork or anything when you need to concentrate (such as make telephone calls) at the optimum time for you and REST at your worst times.
6. Go shopping
I really don’t miss shopping. The shopping mall, that cathedral to commercialism. It all seems so unpleasant now. I buy clothes online, making sure I check the size guides before purchasing. If you need to make a return, in the UK it’s so easy now to have packages uplifted from home or from local stores.
I can’t do airports (too much stress, light, noise, people, extremes of temperature; just too much of everything, sensory overload); I can’t travel in the car more than an hour at a time and when I arrive at our destination, I’m exhausted and have to sleep! So we tend to go away for day trips to the beach, to seaside towns or to a Farmer’s Market, and I always write nice reviews for any places we have visited as an act of kindness. You can make future memories in the small things. You remember the weather, the time for you and your partner to talk, the nice food and good service you had for lunch, the photographs you took and so on. I’ve visited many places in my earlier life; nowadays I enjoy watching television programmes about travel to beautiful places. The brain doesn’t distinguish between imagining doing something and actually doing something, did you know that? Fascinating.
I used to love knitting, but it belongs to the past and to the perfectionist personality that I was (and which still lurks in waiting in the background!). There was a lot of ego involved in knitting, that sense of “Oh look what I’ve created. Aren’t I clever!” I was looking for praise from other people and that was all tied up in my lack of self-esteem. Now I know I no longer need others’ approval. I can appreciate my niece’s knitting achievements for example ToryaWintersDesigns, but don’t feel the need to take up the needles again.
I can no longer drink alcohol, but you know, I don’t miss it. I realised that I relied on alcohol to relax me and I thought I couldn’t have a ‘good night out’ without it. Not a bit of it! I can now go out for a short meal in the evening, although I find it very tiring and have to sleep a lot the following day. But it’s wonderful to feel connected again with family and friends. If you can’t get out, why not invite people to your home, which is what we did for the past 8 years. By doing this, I was able to sit and relax on a comfortable chair at home while everyone else organised the meal around me! People are so happy to come and spend time with you, they don’t mind if you ask them to heat up some food or make tea. If you’ve explained your condition, they’re happy to help.
I used to love to drive. The freedom that it gives you. I rely on other people to drive me now, although we have recently bought an automatic car which I can drive for a few minutes at a time, but it does cause pain in my arms and I daren’t go out at all in the afternoons when concentration is poor. I just wouldn’t put others at risk. The thing about driving is, it encapsulates the big thing about having a chronic illness: having to rely on other people. My goodness, how I fought this for years, so determined was I to stand on my own two feet. But it’s such a relief when you finally say, “Yes, would you help me with this…” You can still do many things for yourself, but everyone needs a little help with something in their lives. Your pride stands in the way; let it go and you will be happier.