NY blues: are resolutions good for you?

Time to resurrect a New Year's post from three years ago ... As 2013 rapidly approaches, thoughts may have turned to all sorts of resolutions for the new year: 'I must lose weight', 'I will refrain from alcohol', 'I will do more exercise' … Long (and many) lists of dos and don'ts are underway. Endless …

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Do you have seasonal stress?

free from stress

There’s an old Zen adage that goes something like: ‘You should meditate for 20 minutes every day, unless you’re too busy – in which case you should meditate for an hour.’ This piece of advice seems particularly relevant in the 21st century as we race through the hours and weeks at breakneck speed. So much to do. So little time to do it. Certainly, no spare capacity to sit and do nothing – particularly if you are trying to plan the perfect festive break on top of everything else! Yet time and again, scientific studies have proven the efficacy of simple relaxation techniques in allowing us to free ourselves from the stresses of modern-day living. Being still and relaxing the body can help us to release physical tensions that build up (most commonly around the neck, shoulders and jaw). Focusing on the present moment (or mindfulness, as it is often called) lets…

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Remember, please remember, on the 5th of November …

It's not just humans that suffer from stress. Animals do, too. The difference with humans and animals on events such as Bonfire Night is that most humans understand why there are loud bangs, lots of flashes, perhaps flames, large gatherings of people and different smells in the atmosphere. For domestic pets, and even wildlife, these …

Food for thought

Here are some statistics I heard on a recent radio programme (BBC Radio 4’s Food Programme): the average American spends 27 minutes a day cooking and 4 minutes clearing up. As the programme suggests, 4 minutes clearing up would indicate a fairly low level of preparation and would perhaps mainly consist of throwing away the …