A month of blogging

A month of blogging

So just 30 days ago, I elected to start the Ultimate Blog Challenge and do a blog a day for 30 days.

Would I do it again? – yes, but only if I have a game plan as I did for this month

Was it worth it? – a definite yes !!

Am I doing it again next month? – a definite no !!!

A Big Thanks to Michele Scism and Michelle Scaffer for coming up with the concept.

In summary, here’s an index of what I’ve posted.

Day 1 : How to experience Moments of Light

Day 2 : Inspiration in Business

Day 3 : The anatomy of a click through

Day 4 : Whole Mind Not-Thinking

Day 5 : What is Love?

Day 6 : Be an Agent of the Infinite

Day 7 : What do you know?

Day 8 : iPadivity

Day 9 : Making Time

Day 10 : eReading

Day 11 : eWriting

Day 12 : ePublishing

Day 13 : Getting in the Zone

Day 14 : The Golden Age of Self-publishing

Day 15 : Whole Brain Thinking

Day 16 : How to Have A Great Week : part #001

Day 17 : How to Have A Great Week : part #002

Day 18 : The Inspirational Breath

Day 19 : Cross Crawling

Day 20 : Mapping your Mind

Day 21 : Food for Thought

Day 22 :  Which side are you on?

Day 23 : Something for the Weekend #001

Day 24 : Something for the Weekend #002

Day 25 : Something for the Weekend #003

Day 26 : Fear of Ridicule

Day 27 : Fear of Failure

Day 28 : Fear of the Unknown

Day 29 : Fear of Success

Today – this index … Phew !!!

 

Something for the Weekend #002

Something for the Weekend #002

Soulwave

Soulwave tells of a fictional account of a possible near-future for the Earth and humanity. It is a sober reminder of how life on this planet is special and to be treasured.

It tells of a world where the ice caps have melted, the population has renormalised and of the cosmic joke to end all cosmic jokes – as far as humanity is concerned.

It’s written to inspire people to look up in wonder and amazement and to treat every day as if it is your last. We are only here and alive by the slimmest of chances and margins. This we must be eternally grateful for.

This is a sample from the novel of the same name that is being published in 2012.
– or it is also available for your iPhone and iPad if you want a copy to keep and take around with you to share with others

or for the Amazon Kindle

Enjoy …

Something for the Weekend #001

Something for the Weekend #001

100 Years of Ermintrude100 Years of Ermintrude

Here’s a short ‘read’ for the weekend – I say ‘read’ as this one’s a listen !!

This is the first in the 100 Years of Ermintrude trilogy which you can listen to for free – it tells of the life of a woman backwards – it is poignant and thought provoking.

“Stunning. I cried. That’s all !” said one man about it.

“You’ve captured the zeitgeist of every age,” said another.

– or it is also available in text and with audio for your iPhone and iPad if you want a copy to keep and take around with you to share with others

or buy the whole Trilogy on Amazon here

Enjoy …

Listen here if you have an iPhone or iPad

Which side are you on?

Which side are you on?

One of the most amazing feats we can perform is to consciously control which parts of our brain we are using.

Once mastered, you can then put this under ‘unconscious control’ and increase your creativity several fold.

A good example of this is when you learn to ride a bike or drive a car. Once learned, you can do something else and multitask without having to give what is an amazingly complex task a second thought.

Now I should say the the whole left and right brain model is both simplistic and only serves to help us understand that we can be in different states of mind. Our left and right brain functions are caused by our state of consciousness not the generators of it and what is processed by the physical left and right are nowhere near as separate as perhaps currently thought. It is a good approximation thought to help us get our mind around what is one of the most complex structures we currently know of in the Universe – our own brains.

In simplistic terms, however, what happens is that the right brain learns a process and hands it to the left to handle automatically.

To understand how the right and left interact, do the following exercise:

Step 1: Write down the word MAGIC on a piece of paper

Step 2: Then write it down two more times

Step 3: Now write it down backwards

Step 4: Then write it down backwards two more times

Step 5: Notice how when you wrote the new word backwards for the second and third time how much you speeded up, probably copying the word you first wrote. Notice how the third time was even quicker than the second time.

Note that I haven’t purposely written it down backwards in this blog as this would spoil the effect. What is happening is something like this.

Step 1: your right brain decoded the sentence above and sent it to the left to handle

Step 2: the left brain repeated the task twice with a modicum of right brain holistic supervision

Step 3: either your right brain forms a whole picture in your mind’s eye of MAGIC backwards and then tells the left brain to write it OR your right brain gets your left brain to write each letter down and then forms the picture of it backwards – perhaps correcting itself with the position of the A and I and G and M after the first attempt

Step 4: when you repeat it, your left brain either copies what it sees on the page or uses the right brain whole image and processes the whole synthesised word

Now repeat the same exercise with the word POWER but this time do it with your eyes closed to experience the difference.

Now this might all sound a bit trivial and we perform complex actions like this every day without giving them a second thought. Just being able to do this is magical. If you really think about it, being able to comprehend that we are doing it is even more magical – and the beginning of a new level of mind control.

If you would you like to learn more about these techniques, make sure you get a copy of Tom’s new book to find out where ideas really come from and how you can make sure yours actually happen …

The Art and Science of Light Bulb Moments

Related blogs:

Getting in the Zone

Whole Brain Thinking

The Inspirational Breath

Cross Crawling

Mapping your Mind

Food for Thought

Food for Thought

Food for Thought

Research has shown that there is a connection between what we eat and how we feel. The biochemical basis of this food-mood link lies in the chemical messengers, called neurotransmitters, that relay thoughts and actions along the neural pathways of the brain.

As food affects the action of these chemical messengers it can also have an impact on our mood. Nutrient choice is therefore important to support the thought process. Meal timing, portion sizes and the combination of foods, play a vital role in the regulation of mood and energy. They influence blood-sugar levels which can leave us as high as a kite one minute and scrambling through the cupboard the next, in search of a sugar fix
For this next exercise, look at how your food affects your creative performance. Like many of the exercises in this book, the benefits to be had by this approach will have an impact on other areas in your life.

Go Low Glycemic
Carbohydrates, in particular, affect our energy levels and mood. High sugar products raise blood sugar for a short period, always followed by a dip that leaves you unfocused and lethargic.
Low-glycemic carbohydrates (e.g. brown rice, pasta, vegetables), on the other hand, provide more stable energy and mood levels. Small portions of complex carbohydrate at regular intervals throughout the day will be effective in regulating energy.
Glycemic Index (GI) refers to the rate at which sugar from a particular food enters the cells of the body. Foods with a high glycemic index stimulate the pancreas to secrete insulin, quickly emptying sugar from the blood into the cells. This produces the familiar ups and downs of blood sugar and the roller coaster energy levels that go with it. Foods with a lower glycemic index do not push the pancreas to secrete so much insulin, so blood sugar tends to be steadier. Eating low GI foods and combining carbohydrate with protein and fibre will reduce the rate at which sugar empties into the cells.
You should, therefore, combine low GI carbohydrates, protein and vegetables or fruit in each meal or snack sitting. Some good examples are:

  • Chicken, brown rice and roasted vegetables
  • Salmon, couscous and greens
  • Wholemeal pitta with tuna and salad
  • Nuts and fruit
  • Wholemeal cereal and semi-skimmed milk with fruit

Meal Patterns
The most effective way to keep energy level even across the day is to spread your calorie need over five to six small meals, rather than the traditional three. This can help you avoid the commonly experienced mid-morning and mid-afternoon energy dips that leave you lacking concentration and focus.
Unsurprisingly, the most common time for people to visit the office vending machine is mid-afternoon, as those who have not eaten a healthy lunchtime snack are on a mission to get a sugar-fix.
Prepare some healthy snacks in the morning so that your work-flow is not interrupted when you sit down to write, and think carefully about which nutrients you select for a brain boosting breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Foods With The Best Brain Balance
Fruit such as grapefruit, apples, cherries, oranges and grapes have a lower glycemic index. Fruit has a lower GI than fruit juice, because the fibre in the fruit slows the absorption of the fruit sugar. A whole apple will therefore be more brain friendly than apple juice.
For cereals and grains, oatmeal and bran have the lowest GI. Other foods with a favourable GI include spaghetti and brown rice. Corn flakes and sugar-coated cereals have a high GI and are therefore not ideal.
Vegetables, soybeans, kidney beans, chickpeas and lentils have the lowest glycemic index of any food. White potatoes have quite a high GI so try to opt for sweet potato instead.
Finally dairy products, milk and yoghurt have a low GI, slightly higher than vegetables but lower than fruit. Plain yoghurt has a lower glycemic index than flavoured yoghurts with added sugar.

Happy foods
During the winter months we are starved of sunlight and this can lead to a reduction in the release of serotonin, an important chemical found in the brain. Serotonin is referred to as the feel good hormone and reduction in its release can lead to the development of serious seasonal depression for some, or just a dip in mood for others. Interestingly, our food intake also has an impact on the release of this hormone and tweaking our diets can lead to an improvement in mood, or halt this dip altogether.
Particular foods have a calming effect on the body that results in heightened feelings of happiness. Chocolate can have this effect as it triggers the release of serotonin and endorphins that make us feel good. Other happy foods include chicken, milk, leafy green vegetables and bananas which all contain a compound called tryptophan.
Tryptophan is an amino acid and one of the building blocks of protein. It competes for access to the central nervous system, with several other amino acids, and it is thought to increase the brain’s production of serotonin, and subsequently to elevate mood.
It is known as Nature’s Prozac.

Perky Foods
Proteins in the diet affect brain performance, either leaving us alert and productive or ready for bed. Rich foods can make us feel alert, jumpstarting the brain so we are ready for action.
Another amino acid that increases neurotransmitter activity is Tyrosine. High tyrosine foods include seafood, soy, meat, beans, tofu and eggs; eating them can leave you focused and motivated.

Essential Fatty Acids
Essential fatty acids (EFAs) also play a role in mood regulation. Those with low intakes of Omega 3 fatty acids have been found to be more likely to experience Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) during the winter months. Three to six grammes of EFAs – taken in the form of food like fish, avocado, nuts or supplements – are recommended for general health and mood promotion.

Water, Water Everywhere
Drinking enough water will also make a dramatic improvement to energy levels. Aim to sip on small glasses of water throughout the day. If you don’t want to interrupt your train of thought by nipping into the kitchen to re-fill your glass, fill a litre sports drink bottle and sip one over each half of the day.

If you would you like to learn more about these techniques, make sure you get a copy of Tom’s new book to find out where ideas really come from and how you can make sure yours actually happen …

The Art and Science of Light Bulb Moments

Related blogs:

Getting in the Zone

Whole Brain Thinking

The Inspirational Breath

Cross Crawling

Mapping your Mind

Which side are you on?