Loving Life Blog

Spur of the Moment Reflections

What if? March 31, 2020

Filed under: Health,Inspiration — Johanna C. Nilsson @ 5:33 am
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I got the question on linkedin from a friend: “0 to 10…..0 is not serious and 10 is extremely serious…what do you rate what the world is going through?”

My take is this: “Nothing we can’t handle or survive – but serious enough for a wakeup call to do things differently in the future. Hopefully it will bring along great outcomes as well – for the planet and humans. 5? You?”

And I get this reading below back – you may already have read it – I have to share it. First post here in over 5 years.

A blog (some call it a poem) by Gurpreet Gill.

What If?​

There is so much fear, and perhaps rightfully so, about COVID-19.​

And, what if…​

If we subscribe to the philosophy that life is always working out for us, that there is an intelligence far greater than humans at work…​

That all is interconnected.​

What if…​

the virus is here to help us?​

To reset.
To remember.​

What is truly important.​

Reconnecting with family and community.​

Reducing travel so that the environment, the skies, the air, our lungs all get a break.​

Parts of China are seeing blue sky and clouds for the first time in forever with the factories being shut down.​

Working from home rather than commuting to work (less pollution, more personal time).​

Reconnecting with family as there is more time at home.​

An invitation to turn inwards — a deep meditation — rather than the usual extroverted going out to self-soothe.​

To reconnect with self — what is really important to me?​

A reset economically.​

The working poor. The lack of healthcare access for over 30 million in the US. The need for paid sick leave.​

How hard does one need to work to be able to live, to have a life outside of work?​

To face our mortality — check back into “living” life rather than simply working, working, working.​

To reconnect with our elders, who are so susceptible to this virus.​

And, washing our hands — how did that become a “new” thing that we needed to remember. But, yes, we did.​

The presence of Grace for all.​

There is a shift underway in our society — what if it is one that is favorable for us?​

What if this virus is an ally in our evolution?​

In our remembrance of what it means to be connected, humane, living a simpler life, to be less impactful/ more kind to our environment.​

An offering from my heart this morning. Offered as another perspective. Another way of relating to this virus, this unfolding, this evolution.​

It was time for a change, we all knew that.​

And, change has arrived.​

What if…​

 

 

Today I am grateful for… October 27, 2013

I am Grateful forI saw her post the updates every day. Every day for a year. I knew that she was going through something. And she was up to something.

Although I sang with her every week, I never asked. I witnessed, I followed. I liked and supported. Got inspired.

What she did was to post every day on Facebook what she was grateful for. Publicly, for everyone to read.

Later the following year I got an invitation to TEDx Mission City 2.0 event where she would talk, that I couldn’t attend. 

Earlier this week I reached out to her and asked if there was a recording. Of course. It is a TED talk. Ideas worth sharing.  (more…)

 

Single in San Francisco May 14, 2013

Filed under: Health,Inspiration — Johanna C. Nilsson @ 7:44 am
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Sandra Philips, Book of the List Party

Earlier this year I attended the event of the year hosted by San Francisco Business Times – “The Book of the List Party”.

I was there with my friend Sandra Philips, branding and PR professional, and we were after having talked with various people, the exhibiting companies and enjoyed a little bit of the delicious food, standing catching up ourselves. Up to us comes a man wanting to talk, and asks how we are doing this evening. As a response when we are returning the question he says: “It is great. I have had a lot of exciting conversations”. Later on when I hear what his profession is I can’t help but smile – given that this event was slightly male dominated, I am sure he had a lot of  “exciting conversations” – he was at the time launching a course for men learning how to come eight times in one evening.

He talks some about what he does, and then he turns the focus on us. “But I am curious – how is it for you both to be single in San Francisco?” Surprised I express “What makes you think that?” He continues: “Well, you know, it is not easy to find a great partner. You may meet someone who is considerate, successful, handsome, and tall – but can he dance?” Now I was even more surprised. I know I am easy to read (in my mind) – but THAT easy? He suddenly gained some points.

The question is: can he dance? How many of you is that important to? And what is the reason for dancing being important?

Johanna

 

I passed the start line. October 14, 2012

Well… I passed the start line.
The first 6-7 miles the tempo wasn’t too shabby. Then the hills started…

Mile 8 I turn to my iPhone to turn on some trigger music.
The phone dies on me!
Mile 10 my knees start to really hurt. I’m speed walking – feels much better.

Mile 11 comes one cheer zone with Michael Jackson music Beat it! – and I suddenly run faster than after start line ?!?! until I can’t hear the music.
Finished strong.

My image of the San Francisco Fire Fighters was misleading. But they were classy in tuxedo.
The post finish line massage was nice!
Late lunch with runner friends and supporters super nice.

Ice bath was not as bad as I imagined it.
I hope it makes magic and that I can walk down the stairs tomorrow. Sorry knees – will prepare you better next time.

And even if it’s misty and foggy, I’ll wear sun screen next time.

And, dear iPhone – I may have taken an hour longer to run this race than 10 years ago – but I’ve got more juice than you’ve got! And seriously – we gotta change that, partner!

After all, 3.08hrs for 13.1 miles given circumstances, is quite ok.
Seeing those t-shirts with mom and dad on, in a race fundraising for Leukemia and Lymphoma Cancer, makes it real.
I hope it makes a difference.

A #NMW12 finisher.
J

 

It Makes Me Feel Love April 11, 2012

Filed under: coaching,Health — Johanna C. Nilsson @ 5:25 pm
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…what is it that you love that would bring your voice and life back should you be in this position?

For me – music, yoga, dance. If you ever see me with my head down – that would lift me up. And even if I know it, it is easy to forget. Even without Alzheimer.

It’s not a coincident that I together with Emma,  my partner in crime in a Co-Active Leadership Program, created a workshop called “Dance to the voice of your core”.

May we never forget. Put on the music and get movin’! Do you feel that spring is in the air?! 😉

Enjoy,

Johanna

AND DO SEE this movie. To the end. – The full article is in today’s Mashable.

Love is in the air. Do do do, do do do….

 

My First Christmas December 25, 2011

Filed under: coaching,Health,Inspiration — Johanna C. Nilsson @ 2:39 pm
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My first Christmas in San Francisco. My first Christmas on “my own”.

I know Christmas or this Holiday Season brings mixed feelings to people. There are so many expectations. Expectations on happiness, good food, fulfilled traditions, togetherness, Christmas gifts… and not everyone has that.

To me, Christmas is a very dear holiday with many meaningful traditional elements. And historically attached with a fair amount of hospital visits as well. Some easier than others. My mom always tells me that the fact that I wasn’t aware of how severe the situation was when she was in hospital (probably 30 years ago), and that I came joyful to visit and also was very keen to get home on time to see the Christmas Calendar on tv, helped her in the process of healing.

This past Thursday I got the question from someone “I need to give her something. For Christmas she is going to her friend who is severely ill and maybe dying.” The book I chose to quote was Osho’s “Maturity”. It is a beautiful book that I warmly recommend you to read. I was recommended to read it many years ago and ended up reading it first on the way back to California after my fathers passing. Wishing that I had read it earlier, and grateful that my attitude to the situation with my father hadn’t been too far off.

“Life should be a continuous celebration, a festival of light the whole year round. Only then can you grow up, can you blossom. Transform small things into celebration. For example, in Japan they have the tea ceremony. […]

An ordinary thing – just tea – and they have made it a beautiful religious festival. Everybody comes out of it nourished, fresh, feeling younger, feeling juicier. And what can be done with tea can be done with everything […]

Even if you fall sick and you are lying in bed, you will make those moments of lying in bed moments of beauty and joy, moments of relaxation and rest, moments of meditation, moments of listening to music or to poetry. There is no need to be sad that you are sick. […]

When you are sick, call a doctor. But more important, call those who love you because there is no medicine more important than love. Call those who can create beauty, music, poetry around you, because there is nothing that heals like a mood of celebration. […]

Make everything creative, make the best out of the worst – that is what I call the art of living. And if a man has lived his whole life making every moment and every phase of it a beauty, a love, a joy, naturally his death is going to be the ultimate peak of his whole life’s endeavor. The last touches. … his death is not going to be ugly as it ordinarily happens everyday to everyone.

If death is ugly, that means your whole life has been a waste. Death should be a peaceful acceptance, a loving entry into the unknown, a joyful goodbye to old friends, to the old world. There should not be any tragedy in it.”

Now, this was not at all what I intended to write about – but it is something important, especially at times when things “should be” jolly, and they don’t appear like it.

I have gone with the flow and created my own little celebration of Christmas, had a really nice day, and ended Christmas Eve celebration together with friends. Now, stats from Sweden shows that the elements that are the most important at Christmas are:

1) Christmas Tree (89% of Swedes has one)
2) Christmas gifts
3) Christmas Ham
4) Donald Duck and his friends wishes Merry Christmas (3pm Swedish National Television)
5) Santa Claus
6) Lutfisk
7) Christmas Pourage
8) Christmas Mass

And yes, since I woke up yesterday morning I have been trying to get SVTPlay app to play Donald Duck and his Friendsbut it “can’t at this moment”. I do have a recording of it somewhere… but luckily I found it on YouTube. And the first one that I landed on was from my very first Christmas 1975! This is now a 52 year old tradition for the Swedish people. Very important. Indeed. Here is a compact version:

Create the celebration – whatever it looks like!

Enjoy, God Jul and Merry Christmas!

Johanna


 

On a Secret Mission Sent from God… November 13, 2010

Filed under: coaching,Health,Inspiration — Johanna C. Nilsson @ 10:24 am
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The last nugget from the rocking-out-of-this-world yoga class with Rusty Wells earlier this week was when we were laying on the right side after Savasana (dead mans pose) at the end of the class, instructed to reach high up with our left arm and easily pull down something precious that we for any reason earlier in life had removed from our heart, and bring it back down and put it back in place.

This something precious could be love for someone who had hurt us, or made us insecure or unsure… Maybe this special someone is truly sent on a secret mission from God – (s)he just don’t know it yet, and maybe just need some extra love.

Read this slowly again. And maybe also follow the instructions – reach for something way up, and bring it back to your heart. Think of someone in your life who this would apply to. How could you reach out to him or her, and maybe extend some special care. A touch of love. Let them know they matter.

I know – it can be difficult. But imagine the impact. Imagine the impact of this yoga class let alone. The room was PACKED. It wouldn’t surprise me if we were 150 people in the room. Everyone had given himself or herself the gift of being there – with the result of feeling filled with energy, love and gratitude. Feeling alive and renewed in every cell after a challenging class. Imagine the ripple effect when each and one of them went home and acted on that message. Even if they didn’t, even if they just took the message to heart and found piece with themselves – that will show and rub off.

Coincident or not – I had had a conversation with a friend the day before who shared when he had come home from work after a bad day being in a very bad mood, and his girlfriend had approached him with a big hug expressing how “courageous” she thought he was. Immediately he felt better, and then asked “where did you get that from”? With a guilty expression she had said “Dr. Phil” – and he felt totally cheated. With a smile. Cause it worked!

Rusty Wells ended the class with an invitation to a workshop at the studio tomorrow Sunday November 14 on Bhakti and Transformational Heart-Based Healing, led by Dr Dan. According to Rusty, “better than Dr. Phil”. 😉

Spreading the L<3VE,

Johanna

Are we maybe all on a secret mission sent from God?

And by the way – when we talk about God, it is always God of our own understanding. What ever that is. Even my dear dad, who resigned from church in Sweden, would have had a tear in his eye and resonate with this.

 

Notes to Self: November 7, 2010

1) Don’t you ever dare even thinking about quitting something that you gain so much energy and joy from. Love singing. Love these people. Free the time to do it.

The acapella group Keeva has resumed from the summer break and is now putting a set together with new world music. Groovy.

Celebrating Change IMOW

Last performed at the Celebrate Change! event at the Metreon in San Francisco, a fund raiser event for International Museum of Women exhibiting stories of change. And, yes, we can do it for you too! Email: keevasf at gmail.com.

Inspired by Tom Shadyac, I took my second hand bike to rehearsal for the first time… over the hill. Filbert street is at one point the most steep street in San Francisco. Union street that I took is parallel. Coming over the top, I realized that my bike probably is 5th hand… the breaks were no good.

2) When buying a bike – always test the breaks in steep hills. Fast forward – can do that! Fast downhill – without breaks – not so much. And yes, I had a feeling, so I tested it early – but the thought of it…

Downward facing dog however – I love that! Urban Flow Yoga has been written about in Wall Street Journal – being the best place for downward dogs in San Francisco! Can’t more than ditto that.

Maybe one day, the International Museum of Women will exhibit all the change created by the yogis at Urban Flow Yoga, much thanks to it’s practice led by Rusty Wells. It is plenty. Amazing small and big stories with ripple effect. To be told…

With love,

Johanna

 

In To Me See September 12, 2010

Filed under: coaching,Health — Johanna C. Nilsson @ 11:33 pm
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I came across a facebook update by Brad who wrote:

Loving revisiting The Four Agreements book by Don Miguel Ruiz

1. Be Impeccable With Your Word.
2. Don’t Take Anything Personally.
3. Don’t Make Assumptions.
4. Always Do Your Best.

One of the 20 following comments was: “I had a junior high teacher say to me…“when you ASSUME you make an ASS out of U and ME…” I never forgot it and I am always very aware. Try the phrase, see if it works for you.”

That is such a good phrase, because it is so true. Another one that I find very telling is the meaning of INTIMACY – IN TO ME SEE. That is the spiritual level rather than physical. One resource on that topic is 7 Levels of Intimacy, by Matthew Kelly. Here is an “easy read” 😉

For a deep, connected, peaceful and loving life,

Johanna

 

Creative Attention! May 23, 2010

There are certainly fun ways to gain attention to and awarenes of something important. I started writing this post some time ago, and after a discussion yesterday at the Commercial Theater Institute Production Workshop in New York City it got new energy…

Not too long ago I was invited to a stand-up comedian show at the Punch Line in San Francisco to see the Pink Ribbon Comedy Tour, a group of four professional stand-up comedians traveling across the country to raise money for Susan G. Komen for the Cure and the fight against breast cancer. The San Francisco Examiner wrote about the tour here. I wouldn’t be able to share a good joke with you from the show, but below is important information that the female audience got on the way out from the theater.

This youtube movie however, is a fun way to raise awareness that I can share. It brings the joy of the JK wedding entrance I referred to in August “This Time I Dance” . What I know now is that there is a also a musical being written related to the same topic. Just make a mental note, and bookmark www.christinahelena.com. As a founder of her non-profit organization, Christina help motivate children diagnosed with cancer. She is also a talented actor, dancer, writer and producer…

May we all celebrate the cure of cancer one day. This week I celebrate that my friends Jenni and Karl had favorable or curable diagnosis of cancer.

One thing we can celebrate today is (the Swedish) Mothers Day.

Have a happy one – invite her for a dance!

Johanna

And to all women – don’t forget to check the info below on your way out…

Breast Self-Awareness (BSA)

1. Know your risk
Talk to your family
to learn about your family health history
Talk to your doctor
about your personal risk of breast cancer

2. Get Screened
Ask your doctor
which screening tests are right for you if you are at a higher risk
Have a mammogram every year starting at age 40 if you are at average risk
Have a clinical breast exam at least every 3 years starting at 20, and every year starting at 40

3. Know what is normal for you
See your health care provider right away if you notice any of these breast changes:
* Lump, hard knot, or thickening
* Swelling, warmth, redness, or darkening
* Change in the size or shape of the breast
* Dimpling or puckering of the skin
* Itchy, sclay sore or rash on the nipple
* Pulling in of your nipple or other parts
* Nipple discharge that starts suddenly
* New pain in one spot that does not go away

4. Make healthy lifestyle choices
Maintain a healthy weight
Add exercise into your routine
Limit alcohol intake

 

 
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