Archive for October, 2009

fear, halloween and daily life


I write and think a lot about FEAR.  So debilitating.  Think about everyone you know and what you talk about.  Usually it has to do with “what might happen.”  Job loss, relationship breakups, global disasters, disease issues, going to the dentist.  Oh, yes.  The latest.  Swine flu.  Silly me.  I forgot about Swine flu.  The latest global fear for all.  Not to mention a destroyed economy in Mexico because…”swine flu” and kidnappings and murder when the reality is narcos versus federales on U.S. border towns like gunfight at OK corral do their thing.  They shoot each other, not tourists.

About Swine flu.  We already have been told, although no one seems to listen, swine is less virulent than our usual flu seasonal malady.  FEAR.

I have a blog thought I’ld like to pass along to you.  Maybe, just maybe, you are a patsy for propaganda.  Suggestion:  Take personal responsibility.  Nothing for granted.  Who is disseminating this information about spraying your nose with some unknown swine flu potion.  (Back in the 80’s, it was cocaine.  At least a known substance ).

FEAR!!!  Of being alone, not having enough, dying, aging, foreclosure, a broken surfboard, holiday get togethers.  AHHHHHHH.  Holiday get togethers.  Talk about mental breakdown.

As a part-time therapist, most clients come because they want to get off the FEAR treadmill.  Life seems to be spinning around with no direction.  This feeling of not knowing where you are going and lacking purpose equals FEAR.

Hear me out.  I’m not making light of this FEAR phenomenon.  In fact, I am quite serious because like you I deal with it also.  Confronted fear this past week.  Actually, just an hour before writing this.  Ok, I know you want to know my story so I will tell you.

I’m on an island in the Exumas.  A basic research island with only a three person staff here.  On weekends everyone leaves except one intern.  This 700 acre island is pristine.  Has elevation and rocks and coral sandy beaches.  Mostly it is scrub and rock.  Yet the view is perhaps one of the best anywhere I have ever been.

So you are isolated.  VERY ISOLATED.  Does this make you want to be here or freak out?

So I’m walking along this path with chameleons scurrying across my pathway and ultimately walk carefully, mind you, over the coral rocks to this incredibly expansive beach with no one, I mean there is no once else around,  I’m on an island, and the water is emerald green rolling in from the ocean,  and there is a slice of late afternoon.

What a golden opportunity.  ONE with coral pink sand, unlimited expression of beach, total privacy, Caribbean sea as clear as sky.  Thoughts about possible sea urchins, sharks, rip tides vanished as I took off my clothes hanging them on a branch, and dove with abandon into the ocean…fearless.

This was not just a frivilous act…it was sanity.  I know enough about potential currents.  The beach was friendly.   A long stretch of white coral sand.  Spectacular.  Frollicking in the waves, I felt strong and complete with life.  What could have made it better?  A female partner to share the experience and make love on the beach.  Of course.  Not happening  this moment.  Remember, I’m on an isolated island.

But this was the time.  Fear reared its ugly head challening me to do what I did…or run away.  I chose the ocean, now, I could be swept out to sea, I thought, and I knew in my heart I was safe and didn’t wish to relinquish the experience I would have if caught in fear.

Go for it.  Halloween is a fun time.  We get messages so we freak out to overcome our fears.  Enjoy the holiday.  More importantly, know Halloween is one day to enjoy our fears in a pretense kind of way.  Life goes on.  No room for fear.

fear and stress release


I just spoke to my Mom.  She is 89 and moving  to a smaller apartment.  Too much furniture and change isn’t necessarily easy for anyone.  I reminded her that her new location (across the street in Hendersonville, NC) is brand new, friends in current building have already moved, she gets three meals a day rather than one, and there is less maintenance.  Put in another perspective, I reminded her that I lived on a sailboat for 15 years and now in 650 square feet on the beach.  Space, I told her, is relevant only to our belief system.  Smaller, for you, I said, is better.  She listened.  Heard the merits.  Bigger is not better.  Sometimes smaller is neither, but in this case yes.  Her life will be more simplified.  As Henry David Thoreau said from his 15 x 15 cabin in Walden Woods, “Simplify, simplify.”

That is one reason I lived on a sailboat for 15 years.  Uncluttered lifestyle.  Bring on something new, let something go.  Stay close to who we really are rather than become cluttered with junk in life.

As I write this, I am interim island manager in the Bahamas for two weeks on a 700 acre pristine piece of paradise.  When I arrived Tuesday aboard a 20 passenger turbo prop landing in Georgetown, Great Exuma, the plane was bouncing like a bronco bull and zero visability as our Bahamas greeting was a tropical storm.  One passenger locked in fear animatedly aired her fear not able to see the ground.  She loudly offered to share tequila she had somehow smuggled aboard and flush faced doused her gullet.

We react to fear in different ways.  We also have options to our reactions.  Stress is universal.  Stress is everywhere.  How we react determines the outcome.  On the plane I simply closed my eyes and enjoyed the turbulence.  My treat, like a festival ride,  was a woman’s terror.

I thought about my Mother’s reaction to moving.  More than that, I thought about how we have to adapt every living minute to our very being.  Every breath is new life.  A sudden unexpected pain might bring an anxiety onset.  We have the ability to adapt or become victim to our own resistence to change.  The latter is fear.

My advice:  Go along for the ride.  You don’t have a choice anyway.  Give in to the moment.  See it as special.  Ride the ferris wheel of life.  Take a deep breath when fear rises and release breath and fear.  And if you find yourself on an isolated island in the Bahamas, take off your clothes, run naked on an isolated beach, and shout praises for just being alive.  No fear, MON.

Healing Chi Kung Workshop/Class in Palm Beach


Check out the Chi Kung Workshop being held November 21st from 11 – 2 pm in Jupiter, Florida – more information on the website -