Australia’s Youngest Politician is Changing the Future for Local Shops

Australia’s Youngest Politician is Changing the Future for Local Shops

Robert Schmitz Local Shops The start-up sensation taking the future by storm all in the name of supporting local shopping. Look out Amazing here comes the Millenial of the year.

 Anyone can have a good idea…

But making it happen takes a special kind of person. Robert Schmitz is one of these people. This 27-year old boy from the bush may just be Australia’s new Mark Zuckerberg. He has created a website that is set to change the future for local shops and aims to retain human experience in a world that seeks convenience.

Inspiring and highly intelligent, Ponderings had to intverview him. My Local Shopsnot only presents local stores on their own online shopping platform, but the quirky high end market atmosphere is disruptive and revolutionary. If he is to have his way, the haunting sound of small town shop closing will be a thing of the past. Tech + Heart has arrived in Australia and the gutsy move has us truly captivated.

Retail industry futurist, Doug Stephens, predicts that within 15 years, e-commerce will overtake conventional retail sales.

The more we buy online the closer shops come to extinction.

A study conducted by Roy Morgan found that Australians spent a whopping $41.3 billion on online shopping last year.  This is a major concern. Not only are local shops vital for employment and our cities economies. Real-life-shopping is a meditative, social, human experience that awakens the senses. You get to feel the plush pillow, smell the candle, listen to the quality of sound playing through the Harvey Norman headphones. You’re actually required to interact with people! Buying off Amazon is convenient but doesn’t support the local shops that need it.

Schmitz has created the website with the latest tech and algorithms- allowing you to enjoy the time-saving convenience of shopping from the comfort of your home, while still supporting local shops and getting to know your community.

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At just 21 years old you became the youngest councillor in Australian politics. What was your motivation behind this?

I thought, instead of moving from my country town, Whyalla, I would find a way to make a positive change myself so that I didn’t have to move.

Now you’ve left politics to pursue My Local Shops; a platform that allows customers to browse and purchase products from stores in their location. How does it work?

The website allows you to type in your location. Then any store in that region that is on My Local Shops will appear with all the stock they currently have in store. This way, if you need something that day, you can find what store has the product you want and order it online. Then you can head straight to the store and pick it up that day, rather than waiting days to receive it.

What are the benefits of using My Local Shops?

For me, it’s a lot of seeing and getting a taste for what’s out there before even leaving your doorstep. Amazon and all these other platforms are convenient, but they’re just not supporting local stores, and they are the ones that need it the most. Browsing on My Local Shops also means you might come across a shop you didn’t know existed.

 

When did you get the idea?

The idea really came together last June and was launched in January, so it’s all happened really fast.

Who can access My Local Shops?

It’s currently being trialled in Whyalla. However, even though it’s only meant to be accessible there, we’ve already had someone purchase a 3.75L cactus drink dispenser from QLD. Due to a glitch in the system, a woman has been able to click on the direct link to My Local Shops and purchase the product from Whyalla, while living in QLD. So now she’s waiting in QLD to have this fantastic party with her cactus dispenser!

What will be the next step?

Well, I was born and bred in Whyalla, so naturally, I wanted it to start there, but it isn’t a hustling bustling shopping community. The Geelong region is geographically ideal with the surf coast and Bellarine Peninsula so close. Ideally, it will expand nationwide, but this comes down to local retailers. E-commerce giants are going to continue to grow and take over bridge and water retail. If retailers accept that they need to be online, we can work together and stop this from happening. How big it gets will also depend on consumers. There needs to be a collective thought that supporting local shops will directly affect your life and your children’s future. It’s not just a ripple in a pond if we all do it!

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What is your advice to anyone with an idea?

Don’t procrastinate, action it immediately! Boil it down to its simplest, raw, form, and then make it happen. You’ll never be proud of your very first addition, there’ll always be changes to be made, but I would try a little less for perfection, and more for action to begin with.

About Robert:

Robert Schmitz works with the community anyway he can. He was elected to the City Council of his hometown Whyalla at just 21 years old, making him the youngest Australian councillor ever. 5 years later, the talented tradie, left politics to pursue his next endeavour, e-commerce website My Local Shops.

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Anxiety- One Brave Step

Anxiety- One Brave Step

What’s the difference between a professional and an expert?

The person who not only has impressive qualifications but has walked the walk and speaks from experience. Bravery comes in many forms and sharing a personal story that may in some way help another is a type of courage we love at Ponderings. We welcome one such person: Sarah Healy- Health Professional and life changer.

 

Here’s a discovery that may help you on your journey: exercise helps to reduce anxiety but how do we put it into action? I can speak from experience, and I want to share this with you.

 

I’m an Exercise Physiologist, and up until recently low and behold I had a fear of exercise.

 

Sounds ridiculous right?  I started to avoid exercise, feeling anxious and using every excuse under the sun to resist.  I used pain and injury as my excuse. My clients come to me with pain and injury, and I give them exercises to help.

 

I wasn’t always this way, but I have for a very long time identified myself as an injured person. I remember going to a chiropractor as a gymnast at ten years old because I was experiencing back pain and that continued through years of gymnastics, competitive aerobics (never was very good at that fake smile), track cycling and anything else I could try.

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After having my first two children, my anxiety levels were through the roof.

 

Sometimes just the thought of going for a walk or a ride would stir up pain in my back and knees. Back spasms weren’t uncommon, and I feared it would be too debilitating to feed and carry my babies. None of my pain or injuries were severe, but my anxiety would cause tension, and that tension and memory of pain would bring on more pain and panic.

 

Stress or anxiety causes a stress response, fight or flight. Chronic anxiety can lead to hyperstimulation, even if the threat has passed, leading to headaches, tight and painful muscles and general aches and pains.

 

I was anxious about exercising, not exercising, having injuries, having pain, putting on weight; afraid people would think that because I was injured, unfit, in pain and overweight I wouldn’t know what I was talking about professionally.

 

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I didn’t initially realize that my anxiety was increasing my pain.

 

It was when I noticed it in a family member that was experiencing pain always just before the same event and always less when away on holidays that it finally linked for me. I was also very aware of what I was missing out on with my family when my husband would take the kids for a walk or ride, and I wouldn’t go. I was missing out on so much. I was determined not to identify myself as an injured person. It wasn’t the exercise as much as wanting to move daily as part of my routine, wanting to move and not thinking about it so much.

 

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The mental aspect of pain is so incredibly powerful that you can experience higher levels of pain just by receiving an MRI diagnosis than compared to those with the same injury but without MRI investigations. You are not your MRI; you are not your diagnosis.

 

Countless studies have identified the benefits of exercise for the symptoms of anxiety so I was well aware that exercise could help me too. Where I stumbled was the very thought of exercise was making me feel anxious. I needed to reduce the fear of exercise and the only way I could do that was also to reduce my fear of pain and injury. If I was to try exercising I needed to be calmer and accept that if I was to feel pain during or after my session that would be ok. My pain was not an emergency.
Blog space Teknique Health Sarah Healy Ponderings Magazine


New neural pathways were needed in my brain, to bypass my routine response of ‘oh no I’m about to exercise and make all of my injuries and pain worse!’ Who would create those pathways? Me.

I would meditate and imagine my body relaxing, my muscles relaxing and when I started to add more exercise, I would treat myself like I would treat my clients (I know right? Who knew?) As therapists we are so good at helping others we often neglect ourselves!

 

I went back to basics but also changed things up because with different exercises or environments I was less likely to predict a movement that would cause me pain.

 

A local ‘Ninja Warrior’ gym was one I tried. Ninja training meant fun climbing rope ladders and monkey bars and flipping tyres, the time would fly by. It didn’t feel like a workout, and I gradually started to trust my body again and not obsess over little niggles. Activities I did not even consider through fear of pain and debilitation were now an option.

 

Muscle fatigue and pain from exercise, the ‘good pain’ -I don’t fear. I love the feeling of my body reminding me I have put in the effort. I have enjoyed welcoming that feeling back into my life.

 

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Please find movement that you enjoy even if it takes you years and many trials to work it out. ASK FOR HELP from physical and mental therapists. Meditation and mindfulness are such powerful tools too. I have learned to believe I can heal and if I do experience pain, I can relax with it before panic makes it escalate. I have even recently started playing Gaelic Football, it’s not easy, I haven’t run in years but its fun, so much fun.

We are blessed with so much choice here in Australia, take advantage of that. It doesn’t have to be an organized sport it can be hiking to a waterfall, swimming, a circuit with a group of friends, walking your dog on the beach, street orienteering (it’s a thing, look it up, it can be fun) Moreover, if that means being the slowest on a Gaelic football team and sitting on the bench for the finals than do it and cheer as loudly as you can. At least then you’ll have a reason to train.

 

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I can’t say that my anxiety is gone, but it has diminished.

 

There were a few anxious tears before the first few Gaelic training sessions, could I do this? What will others think of me?  I’m too heavy, slow, uncoordinated? However, each time I attended those sessions, it would get easier to tie up my boots and go.  

 

So why am I sharing my story with you?  

 

Because for someone with anxiety you can feel very alone with your experience. You agonize over every detail and can become very focused on your own story and worries. Once you start to open up, you realize your story is not that different from so many others. I have learned so much from everyone that provided me with the tools to help myself, and I have continued to research more so I can help my clients get back their joy in movement.

 

 

Sarah Healy Teknique Health Want to get in touch with Sarah and find out more about healthy healing? This inspiring human can be found HERE.

About Sarah Healy: 

Exercise Physiologist – AEP AES ESSAM | Bachelor of Applied Science – Human Movement |

Graduate Diploma – Exercise for Rehabilitation | Cert IV – Training & Assessment

An Exercise Physiologist with over 13 years of experience and has been employed in the sport and fitness industry since 1996. Sarah works with individuals experiencing pain, musculo-skeletal injuries, posture/muscle imbalances and those that have developed anxiety relating to exercise and movement.

 

 

 

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A Transformative Life

A Transformative Life

Jillie Carter Article Ponderings

There is a photograph of Jillie A. Carter as a young school teacher and beauty queen…

 

Her delicate features and radiance shining from the picture, the kindness in her eyes stands out in a way that says “I am here to help people.” I saw this picture once on a visit to her home tucked away in the hill rise of Geelong. I was taken aback, many decades later her external beauty had not faded one scrap, and in addition to the elegance and kindness in her eyes, there is a wisdom of ages that validates this did in fact happen. Jillie A. Carter has indeed helped people.

 

 

The Road For Hope Cancer Journey From Ponderings Magazine

 

 

 

With a career spanning more than 40 years dedicated to the service and well-being of others, Jillie has walked the road less traveled.  From the offices of the corporate world to the classrooms of our children and the vulnerable space of women’s shelters- Jillie has been a guide for transformation. An advocate for the broken and inspirational.

 

Jillie has a trove of chapters in her story, but it is the one about her guidance from Louise Hay back in the formative days we thought you may enjoy.

 

Some influential humans have impacted holistic healing in the world, but one that genuinely ensorcelled the world is Louise Hay. The incredible author, mentor, and movement maker has impacted the lives of millions of people around the world and continues to do so via Hay House, a legacy that carries on her work internationally after her passing in 2017.

Jillie became acquainted with Louise’s work in the late 1970s, and what has ensued is a journey of servitude to others and a life of healing.

 

planet spectrum

What Drove You to Start Your Self Awareness and Healing Journey?

I read Louise ’s book “ You Can Heal Your Life  “ which had a profound effect on me.

Before this, I had been to wellness retreats in Australia and had delved into meditation. I heard about Louise’s courses coming to Australia and I was interested in it but was procrastinating about going.

In sheer frustration in listening to my procrastination, my husband dialed the phone number for Louise ’s course, handed me the phone and I found myself talking to Patricia Crane, Louise Hay’s co-worker who assisted Louise with the writing of the workshop manuals for the Teacher Training and  Personal Coaching.

The Teacher Training Course involved about 35 people from different parts of Australia, coming together to connect with the aim being to change their life.

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This course was to be a powerful channel for me to investigate and acknowledge the resentment, guilt, and feelings of not being good enough that I held deep within my own being.

So off I flew to Perth, Western Australia, to undertake the Louise L. Hay Teacher Training Course. This was a unique opportunity to get close to Louise’s work as it was the first time a training course based on her book was to be run in Australia. It was a life-changing, intense and nurturing environment exploring extensive therapies.  

As well as the Louise L. Hay growth exercises we were introduced to her Mirror work. Each one of us had a mirror into which we were to look and say out loud “I Love Myself.”

How powerful was this exercise?

 

Most of us were in tears because this was just too threatening. Gradually we learned about the power of affirmations and the steps to arriving at being able to say “ I Love Myself. “

Later in September of the same year, “The Advanced Training Course/ Personal Coaching Course” was run in California U.S.A. and off I went. This gave me a qualification to work one to one with people as a “Personal Life Coach.” The past eighteen years I have worked with a wide range of clients including professional, trade, students and people from multicultural and diverse backgrounds.

The training I received enabled me to identify client specific issues and apply the relevant healing process required within a safe and confidential environment. It was a beautiful collection of tools to add to the work I love to do. To this day I continue to incorporate Louise L. Hay’s philosophies in my healing work.

What was Louise Hay like in the flesh?

 

She had an amazing presence, and I could see a violet aura around her which appeared to be huge. In one of her first books, I presented to her  “ Love Your Body” she wrote “ LOVE LIFE JILLIE” in violet ink. I still treasure this.

 

We hear in conversations about personal growth the importance of Inner Child Work which Louise was an advocate for. Can you explain why this is important?

 

To go into the heart to meet your inner child enables you to surround her/him with love denied through physical, mental and or sexual interference and to replace anything negative that happened in childhood with positive unconditional love. If you had any form of abuse in your life as a child, shock or continuously being put down by others whether parents, siblings or friends, these hurt feeling stay locked in your heart and as hard as you try you can never feel relaxed, happy or that you have achieved your goal. Often those who have been hurt as children are high achievers as some part of them is crying out be recognized. This work also goes to the subconscious mind for transformation. This may lead to new career opportunities, new relationships, high self-esteem, confidence, travel, try new ventures and lead a fulfilling and rewarding life.

 

 

How does helping people to heal impact your life?  

 

I enjoy seeing people become whole and well so they can fully embrace a positive life. There is a joy that comes with this work, to teach others to step into their own power, balance and self-harmony are incredibly rewarding.

 

Why is being of service to others important?

 

I went through a period of transformation which has enabled me to fully embrace beautiful things in life. I want to continue this service to others while I am alive on this planet, and my health allows me to continue this healing work.

 

It is in this response that I reflect there has not been a time when Jillie has not actually been in service to others during her career.

 

 

In the Ponderings office, we are quite fond of Kahlil Gibran.

This quote from him reminds me of Jillie and her loving kindness.

 

“The teacher who is indeed wise does not bid you to enter the house of his wisdom but rather leads you to the threshold of your mind.”  

 

 

More About Jillie A. Carter:  In addition to a corporate career in Non For Profits Organisations spanning decades, Jillie has spent over 40 years developing an entire scope of modalities and qualifications that are a seamless reflection of assisting people in transforming their lives. Jillie is a celebrated keynote speaker, facilitator and specialist guide with a focus on transformational healing, guidance, meditation, mind-body connection, and personal growth.

 

For more information about Jillie go to: https://www.facebook.com/Jillie-A-Carter-Transformational-Concepts-2103440829899812/ and Natural Therapy Pages

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Underworks has partnered with the Salvation Army, who together are on a mission to provide socks...

Join our other 22,000+ Ponderers and discover the real stories and voices of us. Subscribe today and get your Free Copy.

 

 

  • You get a copy of Ponderings Magazine Anthology featuring the year's best stories and features delivered to your door.  

 

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Get your free copy and all of this for $24.95 a year, YES PLEASE! 

 

 

Independent Media is critical; it means no large media giant is pulling our strings or dictating what we write. Ponderings provides an alternative to networked media, producing stories about issues of social justice and humanity; that might not otherwise be told. Some you will need no introduction and some you will be uplifted to find out about and be inspired by. This year, in particular, our lineup is going to delight and surprise you.

 

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Outspoken – The Voice of Justice

Outspoken – The Voice of Justice

Outspoken by Fr Tod Bower Ponderings Magazine Australia

by Fr. Rod Bower

 

There are twelve minutes and four seconds of my life of which I have no actual memory.

That is the length of time I stood on the stage at the International Convention Center in Sydney delivering my TEDx talk.

There seems to be a gap in the space/time continuum between the second the stage manager said ‘go’ to the moment my appointed minder asked ‘can I get you anything?’ It’s not that I am ‘unaccustomed to public speaking.’

I do it all the time. There was more than six months notice, weeks of preparation and days of rehearsals; it’s just that the bar is set so high.

There seems to be a focus and intensity to a TED talk that doesn’t exist in any other forum.

As I left the stage my response to my minders question was simple; ‘water,’ I was just so dry in the mouth that it’s a wonder that I could speak at all.

Perhaps that’s why TED talks are so popular; we are parched, thirsty for well-considered thoughts, honed arguments tested and reviewed reflections were deliberations have been distilled to their essence.

 Presentations where we know people have given deep thought to their subject and have not only already been challenged on their content, but are willing to open themselves up to further criticism.

So there was TEDx and then came a book release.

As Kirsten put it “how could you ever imagine placing a message on your church sign could lead to these things?”

Fr Rod Bower Ponder Kindness on Church Board

Kirsten asked me what inspired me to write the book. The question the strikes fear in the heart of most authors is this actual question. In my case, the superficial but truthful answer is “Penguin Random House asked me too.

However, as I took up the challenge from the publisher a deeper and more complex reason emerged.

Outspoken became an answer to a parishioners question “Why are you different to all the other priests we have had in the parish before?”

Outspoken is the story of how I came to see that social order without justice is nothing more than tyranny and how and why I felt compelled to do something about it.

I hope that by telling my personal story, others may be inspired to reflect on their own stories and learn how order and justice might be better partners in the dance that leads to a more just society for all.

Because of my story, I see everything from the perspective of an outsider. This  has given me a particular empathy for those who are marginalized by a society that values order over justice. I hope Outspoken contains something contagious for the reader and the world becomes infected with compassion.

From Penguin: “Dear Christians. Some PPL are gay. Get over it. Love God.’ On 24 July 2013, Anglican priest Rod Bower put up these words on the roadside sign of his Gosford parish church. Sparking a social media revolution. The post was shared thousands of times – suddenly the one-time butcher was on the public stage.

Today Fr Rod has close to 65,000 followers on social media. He uses this platform to raise questions about Australia’s corporate soul, to assert that we are all brothers and sisters – asylum seekers, Muslims, those identifying as LGBTI, Indigenous Australians …And for such messages, the death threats pour in. How did a shy adopted kid from the country become this steadfast conscience of our nation, preaching both peace and disruption? Part life story, part love story, part manifesto, Outspoken describes evolution as surprising as are Fr Rod’s views about Christianity.

Utterly frank, both philosophical and funny, this is a singular book by a singular person. It illuminates the life and work of the man behind those signs.” To get  your copy go to: Penguin Books

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Join our other 22,000+ Ponderers and discover the real stories and voices of us. Subscribe today and get your Free Copy.

 

 

  • You get a copy of Ponderings Magazine Anthology featuring the year's best stories and features delivered to your door.  

 

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Get your free copy and all of this for $24.95 a year, YES PLEASE! 

 

 

Independent Media is critical; it means no large media giant is pulling our strings or dictating what we write. Ponderings provides an alternative to networked media, producing stories about issues of social justice and humanity; that might not otherwise be told. Some you will need no introduction and some you will be uplifted to find out about and be inspired by. This year, in particular, our lineup is going to delight and surprise you.

 

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The Secret Language of Tiffany

The Secret Language of Tiffany

The Ferris Bueller soundtrack is playing on Spotify, Twist and Shout sounds so good on a Saturday.  

The sun has finally decided to show up, and I am sitting here, fingers to the ready- heart on a wire and full to the very edge of the teacup with feeling. Is it a safe time to write? The new discovery for me is- yes. These are the times when the writing comes easily, flowing from brain to page like an overzealous child- all vulnerability has sidestepped when this takes place. She has taken off, shaking her head in disgust. I ignore her. We need to give her a name. She is the hider of the Freak Flag, she doesn’t like it when I fly it. We shall name her Sargeant Tiffany. She’s no fun.

Tiffany the fun police

It is a big week for us. For me.

It either has the potential to go either way- a crazy game of Sliding Doors and what’s behind door 27? Shall we peek? Let’s not think about it. Let us think about it non-stop. Distraction, distraction…Hello, Monday you wonderous creature.

There are several options on offer Monday at the Hospital. Are you ready Madame?

Option 1: This revolting thing in my brain has actually completely stabilized, which means is still sitting there like the terminator with its finger on the trigger, but the finger stopped getting itchy.

Option 2: The bugger has gone. I repeat the A-hole has left the building. See you later alligator, astalavista. Like a magical butterfly and the power of all healing, it is completely gonesky, which means I can just die like mostly everyone else- unexpectedly.

Option 3: It has sprouted some new leaks which means more brain surgery. This means getting really fat again because of steroids. This is not an option. I love a good rolly polly belly like anyone else, but enough already.

Option 4: Some wonder human somewhere on this planet has come up with a way to fix it. Let’s call him Bob.

Option 5: I don’t go, and I pretend everything is perfectly peachy. This is a very tempting albeit stupid. I have done this multiple times. It stops me thinking about the D word. No one likes that word. No matter how enlightened we believe we are. No one likes a D word dropper.

Option 6: I’m still pondering on this one…I will keep you posted. At the moment it resembles smoking a joint with Willie Nelson and playing with a basket of baby Sloths. I can’t technically smoke a joint so I might be on rolling duties for Willie. That’s ok. I can roll a mean paper (don’t judge me, I had to roll my dad’s cigarettes ok?)

Sloth Ponderings Kirsten Macdonald

This resilience thing is mad.

Yesterday I stood at my sink, elbow deep in this beautiful new grandma sink, fired in France, beautiful fireclay, deep and shiny. I hated washing dishes, now it’s like a lovely bath. Blue eyes stood next to me drying the dishes.

“You ok?” “I don’t want to die.” “I don’t want you to die either.” “Well, that’s good. Because if you did, that would kind of suck. Lucky you still like me.” “How can I not? You make me laugh.” “It’s not very fair any of this is it?” “Nope.” “I am feeling sorry for myself.” “Me too.” “I just want it to be fixed and never think about it anymore. It’s taking up too much space in my brain.” I am good at puns.

Then Hilltop Hoods Cosby sweater starts playing, and he does the dance that makes me laugh too hard. There is some pelvic thrusting that is slightly off rhythm and this thing he does with his butt.

How did we become this resilient?

We talk about it a bit. As we get older, the conflicts between humanity become more obvious. The bigger things mean more to us. The need for emotional intelligence suddenly becomes the focus and not the mortgage. It occurs to me that the friction of humanity is the cause of joy and pain.

Echoes of the inflictions of childhood build walls of muscle and grit- a toolbox of tricks that can protect us and then trip us up. All in one- a double doozy. The perseverance and seeking of peace propel us forward if we are brave enough to break open the armor and bare our skin. Telling old Sargent Tiffany of vulnerability police that it is ok to show vulnerability and truth.

Leaderboard Ponderings 2

It is vulnerability and truth and being aware of the silent witness within that breaks us into freedom. Deep huh? Hey don’t analyse mine, check out your own muscles, those suckers are there, along with a peacepipe and a marching band. So many situations rely on those muscles, and then we need to break free of them. All sorts of circumstances, in all walks of life. 

The opposite of this is building a romance with defense.

Gathering evidence to keep ourselves safe. The internal bodyguard becomes a jailer. Whispering platitudes, distractions, and conflicts on replay. Playing back all the old vinyl with their scratches and grooves. Maybe it’s time to sharpen the needle, to play the real music and stop whistling everyone else’s tune.

I have realized I don’t like significance. Weird huh? I love it when other people wear it like a beautiful cape or jacket- but it’s never looked delicious on me. It makes my skin feel ick.

I do not want to be significant. The feeling creates anger within. Why? 

If I am sick- it is significant. If I suddenly become miraculously well- this is also significant.

Both matter. Both have weight. I don’t like the weight. I learned very young that importance of not being too significant- to go under the radar. I don’t do it very well, but it is a primal part of my core belief system. These feelings of deep anger are being triggered by the romance of defense. So I write these words fiercely as if I am paddling as fast as I can in rapids, something pushes me forward. The anger is not good. It makes me angry. The irony is deafening.

Leaderboard Ponderings 3

The cognitive pieces of the puzzle are slowly coming together. Stealth mode can kick in at any time, so watch it. I cannot control it. 

Tiffany just sat down in front of me looking very dazed and confused, she just dropped her badge on the table and asked me why I was writing this piece of communication? Who is it for? 

Tiffany the Vulnerable Police

The introvert-extrovert pendulum is swinging like a crazy monkey on a swing with a banana.

I am not an angry human as a rule. It doesn’t sit very well in my body. But I am a writer. So what does one do in this situation? She writes, prints and rolls it up, placing into a very groovy hipster bottle, it is some kind of pharmacy bottle from the 1940’s, pop a cork in the end and throws it out into the sea, watching the waves take it to whoever feels they may like to read it. I just wrote about myself in the third person. It’s a Ferris Bueller thing to do.

Then I get off the car in the middle of the street, the marching band and street parade has gone home.

So I go to my candle, and I pray. The anger has gone. Just like that. With a request and a chord of silver shooting to the architect. I am grateful for life. A big fat full life. The little version of blue eyes comes out and asks if I would like a cup of tea. The middle blessing is smiling getting ready for a party, very handsome. The eldest, the strong and vibrant young woman is finishing an essay. We did ok. We did more than ok. We are here and that sun is shining.

I stop typing, and then there’s that Ferris soundtrack. Hey ustj-ay no-ay het-ay- uietqay- does anyone have Willie Nelson’s phone number?

To read the latest from StevieAnne Minner Click Here. Beyond Blue: https://www.beyondblue.org.au LIFELINE: https://www.lifeline.org.au BRAIN FOUNDATION: http://brainfoundation.org.au

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Friendship- How To Do It Better

Friendship- How To Do It Better

Navigating the waters of friendship can come easily for many who have had a stable upbringing and a great example of closeness among their parents’ friends.

For most of us, sustaining a healthy and long-term friendship can be exhausting and bring on the arousal of fear, insecurity or some of our deeper heart issues. Even those who have had incredible experiences and examples around them can turn sharply towards isolation after one destructive encounter with someone deeply cared about. The desire to be a part of a community and family larger than those living inside our shared four walls has been there in every human since creation. Leaderboard Ponderings 3 We all long for a connection to others that allows us to not only gain insight and wisdom from them but also pour out of our own accomplishments the ability to help and give. Most relationships require five basic things to be healthy and sustainable.

Listen-

It’s clear when sharing something either intimate or important if there are attentive ears or not. We all want to be heard and understood. Being a listener is vital to a friendship. Body language, pause and reflection, and eye contact convince another that you are listening. It’s important to even recap what your friend is telling you, so they know you heard them clearly and thought about what they said. Sustainable friendships (2)

Accept-

In most cases, no two people will ever share the exact same opinion on everything, and I am sure the odds decrease drastically as you add more people to the mix. Creating a healthy long-term friendship will require you to accept others as they are with no expectation of being able to change their view or opinion. Recognizing we are ALL flawed in our own way and caring for another in spite of those flaws is genuineness in friendship. Ponderings Friendships

Respect-

Plans, conversations, and interactions won’t always go exactly how we picture them with our friends. Learning to not use manipulative or offensive language is a must to cultivate better relationships. Respect their decisions, choices, and needs. A mom who cancels on an engagement may have something deeper going on than trying to ruin your plans. Respecting their boundaries and loving them where their needs can be met will be a foundational exercise. Friendships Ponderings

Care-

A wise man once said that if you desire to be great, you must be a servant of all. Caring for ourselves is not a bad thing, but when we unhealthily prioritize our needs above others, we are left feeling empty and unfulfilled. This idea goes against everything culture would teach us. In a world that centers around ‘me,’ finding a friend that cares deeply about you and your family can be rare. This does not mean that we don’t take care of ourselves, but when crisis strikes or the needs of our friend are pounding at the heart, we stop and care for them. Making a meal to help them after the death of a parent, showing up with a shoulder to cry on when they just discovered an unfaithful spouse, or even offering to help drive their child to school to relieve morning stress can all be simple and practical ways to show you care. Leaderboard Ponderings 2

Trust-

In any relationship, especially in friendship, honesty is crucial. If you have ever felt betrayed because of lying and manipulation, you understand the strain it causes on your friendship. It becomes a solid brick wall separating you from their emotions, actions, and behaviors. It is the one thing that is harder to regain in a relationship than anything else. Be trustworthy and loving in your honesty to have deeper friendships.   There is no surefire way to create deep, long-lasting friendships. There will always be conflicting personalities, abusive relationships and those to avoid. By using these simple tips along with exercising forgiveness, commitment, and humility, you can better the friendships you do maintain and have them be life-long trustees of your heart.      

Our Author

StevieAnne Minner is a Christian comedian who has always been a bit of a goofball.  “Quick-witted and punny” is what those closest to her would say. A published writer, stand-up comedian, mother and talented columnist is a loveable gem of the Ponderings Team.

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Independent Media is critical; it means no large media giant is pulling our strings or dictating what we write. Ponderings provides an alternative to networked media, producing stories about issues of social justice and humanity; that might not otherwise be told. Some you will need no introduction and some you will be uplifted to find out about and be inspired by. This year, in particular, our lineup is going to delight and surprise you.

 

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