Today is the LAST day of school, and the 1st time in over 45 years,
(since I started Kindergarten) that I have been neither a teacher or a student.
For all but the first 4 years of my life, I have felt the anxiety to "hurry up" and ENJOY my precious summer off.
Now that I am no longer a teacher, or even a grad student ......
I have really had to talk to the chattering monkeys of my mind
as to "what in the world am I going to do with myself this summer?"
I've been reading about American's and our use of "STORAGE BUILDINGS"....
and felt sick as I clearly found myself a part of the same cycle
we've come to accept in this country that
MORE IS BETTER.
Well, I am here to tell you that nothing could be further from the truth.
As I began to do a little research into the subject,
I logged on to the University website to see if there were any
scientific articles about clutter....
and HOLY MOLY... there is actual neurological data as to what
TOOOOOOO much stuff does to our brains.
Hence the beginning of MY SUMMER of a STORAGE CLEAN OUT!
True Confessions..... This was my garage 1 week ago!
When two 50 year old lives converge.....
You Have A LOT OF STUFF!
When my Ft. Worth house sold, I had 1 week to get out
in order to close the deal quickly..... so what that meant was "a grab and cram"
into Storage Buildings and OUR GARAGE....
and now that I have a
BRAND NEW KIND OF SUMMER !!
IT's CLEAN OUT TIME
The first thing I did was begin to clean out 1 of our storage buildings.
As I was cleaning, and getting sooooooo frustrated at the CRAP
we've been paying to store I did a little research into this BOOMING Business! According to comparebusinessproducts, Storage Buildings are the "easiest, cheapest, highest yielding type of business" to make a profit in the 21 century.
It has become a multi-billion dollar industry.
BILLIONS.... that's crazy!
Did you realize that 1 out of every 11 American's have a storage building.
And storage facilities have increased by 75% since the millennium.
According to a recent poll, there are over 60,000 storage facilities in the US, and more being built each day.
WHY... do Americans feel the need to have so much stuff?
Researchers at Yale University identified that there are 2 areas of the brain associated with pain that are triggered when we are asked to "LET GO" of our items.
Other research results showed that people seem to have an unrealistic attachment to things that they KNOW they will not use or have room for
because of their DESIRE to remember the item.
Another study from Princeton University compared people
who work in an organized vs. disorganized environment
and revealed that PHYSICAL clutter competes for neuronal mental attention
showing a significant decrease in performance and far higher levels of stress.
When our senses are OVERLOADED with stuff...
our BRAINS ARE NOT functioning at their highest levels!
So... the more I kept reading, the more my desire to "LET GO"
and not contribute to this problem grew.
I began just like they do on TV and cleared the entire garage out
before I put a single item back inside.
I decided exactly what I needed the garage for and came up with 4 distinct uses.
1. Yard/Lawn needs
2. An Art Space
3. A workout Space
4. A Tool Workshop Area
Space #1 done.
Our brand new yard/lawn area!
Stay tuned NEXT WEEK for the rest of the "clean out"... I am on a mission to clean up our clutter and clean up our lives during my 1st Summer of THE NEW ME!
Sometimes you encounter people along life's journey
and you have to STOP and say......WOW!
Then take a moment and be GRATEFUL
that this is NOT your life!
I just got home from my GRATEFUL Graduation Get-Away
in Hollywood, California where I had the most amazing time
with one of my dearest friends in all the world,
.....in the Airbnb condo next to ours was the most ANGRY woman
I have come across in a very long time.
I have not seen or heard anything quite like this
and had forgotten that there are people doing life
with EXTREME amounts of daily anger.
image from bravotv.com
All 4 days we were in California... you could set your watch by it....
there was going to be a nightly battle.
GRANTED... I do NOT live with these people,
and do NOT proclaim to know any of their history or their story....
so I can only give you a neuroscience perspective
of the ENERGY coming from that room,
and tell you a little about the inner workings of the BRAINs
of myself, and the couple involved during these OUTBURSTS....
I have been known as a "smiler " my entire life, and my own children
tell me on occasion to "reign it in MOM" when we are taking photos
because I can quickly look like the cat who is holding the canary in its mouth....
but did you know there is actual neuroSCIENCE behind a SMILE.
A 1989 groundbreaking study by Dr. Robert Zajonc, on the emotional effects of a SMILE, revealed that even a "fake" smile (one you purposely create) has a direct effect on chemical signals in the brain. The facial muscles used to create a SMILE... change the blood flow to the carotid artery which is the main artery supplying oxygenated blood to the brain. In Dr. Zajonc's study, participants were asked to produce "fake" smiles by making the vowel sound of a Long E, as well as by placing a pencil horizontally in their mouths while clamping down on it with their teeth..... AND.... regardless of whether the smile was "fake" or "real", the same endorphins, (better known as the brain's "feel good" chemicals) were released.
So... what does that mean for the average person
who is NOT walking around being a part of some scientific study...
It means you need to SMILE MORE!
The next time you're having a bad day, something in life is stressing you out, you're having anxiety, feeling sick, or just in a down right grumpy mood... stop and force yourself to smile! I know that sounds crazy, but there are mounds and mounds of evidence showing scientific provable data that your brain is releasing chemicals into your body because of the facial muscles used when you smile. Those muscles are creating a firing of neurotransmitters in your brain that cause the chemical components of happiness.
image by hfboards.mandatory.com
Edinburgh, Scotland.... known to have some of the most unhappy people
across the globe (based on world happiness reports) used this "fake" smile research
to see if it might work with average people on the street.
Watch this 2 minutes video to SEE WHAT HAPPENED!
It says in Proverbs 29, "Where there is no VISION, the people perish"......
and you don't have to be religious or even know this scripture to
use the SCIENCE behind Mental Imagery!
Today I am going to talk to you about something that I KNOW many people will think is whooooo whoooooo, (and that's ok... I'm ready, I've heard it all)
but I am here to tell you I have personally been doing this since 2013
and TOMORROW night (as I walk across the stage)
100% of my original 8 image VISION BOARD will be complete.....
and here is a little bit of both SPIRIT and SCIENCE to explain why.
I Photoshopped my face on the above image
5 years ago......
(nope... that's not my body and I don't even know those people)
LONG BEFORE I had even applied to Grad School,
much less been accepted to the program,
attended a single class, or completed my degree!
BUT.... in October of 2013 I read the book :
by Terri Savell Foy
that changed my life forever.
The book talks about Vision Boards and Goal setting.
Neither of which I'd ever heard of in this way.
The book left me with an "ok" to DREAM again.....
even in the midst of Middle Age.
So.... I sat down one Saturday morning,
and thought of all the things I would dream for myself ....
I wasn't afraid to fail, and truly believed that
"All things are possible to him who believes"
That last part...... Is the KEY
"To him who BELIEVES!".....
and here comes the neuroscience
behind the words that were written about 2000 years ago.
When most people hear of the word "FRAMING" they think of the object surrounding the family photos in their home, the beautiful works of art they cherish, or even those priceless children's drawings scattered about the refrigerator. But.... the term "framing" is also a very important term as it relates to how our brain works.
The Neuroscience bias of "FRAMING" is a term which describes the way information is USED to influence how the brain receives it. "USED" being the Key Word here. Neuroscience has done extensive studies on how people, commercials, marketing and our own words can be USED to influence the way we think.
This is (the same way a picture FRAME influences how you see artwork).
If you have ever gone to Hobby Lobby or another frame shop to have a piece of art or photo framed, then you know the difference between how a cheap frame vs. an elaborately designed frame makes the art appear. It INFLUENCES the way you see the art due to the FRAME that surrounds it. Most everyone understands this concept as it pertains to art however, did you realize your OWN thoughts and words are influencing or FRAMING the way your brain works?
For example.... Do you FRAME your day with:
Good God it's Morning!!!!!
God, it's a good moring!
The choice is yours.
The FRAME you choose determines the way your entire day looks.
Let's dig a little deeper.
art work images by the world famous Itzchak Tarkay
Here you can see a perfect example of some very expensive artwork
by one of my all time favorite painters:
Israeli Post-Impressionist artist Itzachak Tarkay.
This is an excellent way to see how something beautiful can suddenly look like something you might buy at a garage sale or Goodwill,
as compared to something that looks like it has
an important value placed on its WORTH
based on the FRAME one chooses to display it in.
Neuroscience knows that our thoughts and words work EXACTLY the same way!
You've heard the phrase you're a glass "half full" or glass "half empty" kind of person.
But... I didn't know until very recently that there is actual
SCIENCE behind that statement.
Staci is a one-of-a-kind mix of JOY and Neuroscience who is teaching people all over the world to BUILD a BETTER BRAIN by using Gratitude to create a BRIGHTER future. She has a Master's Degree in Educational NEUROSCIENCE and 25 years of teaching experience where she developed a reputation for being able to uncover potential in others like no one else could. Let her teach you how to live a HAPPIER Life by using the neuroscience of GRATITUDE to rewire your brain and build a better future!