evidence-informed strategies and encouragement for your self-care

May 2021 Weekly Wellness Recap

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Sci-Fi Wisdom Battlestar Galatica Adama

"The one human flaw that you spend your lifetimes distressing over... Mortality is the one thing ... Well, it's the one thing that makes you whole." - Number Six (Tricia Helfer), Battlestar Galatica

* * * One of my favorite teachers had a poster which read: "Before you choose how to react: will it matter tomorrow? Will it matter next week? Will it matter next month?"

There's a never ending list of stuff that completes the sentence "life is too short for..." We stress so much over the very same things that are on that list.

Top among them our mortality itself. Yet as Number Six points out, it's the one thing that makes us whole. The point and the pointless in one tidy bundle. An unfixable flaw. The most distressing of stressors.

That poster had really great typography, which originally drew my eye, but also a great point. There's always be something to react to, whether it be spilled milk or existential dread, but putting our reaction into a larger context over a larger span of time, helps narrow down how we ultimately respond.

To memorable posters,

Rae * * *

10min read Am I Depressed or Just Exhausted? It’s pretty obvious when we’re sleep-deprived. The fogginess and fatigue in our body and mind are unmistakable. But how can we tell if we’re just really tired, or if we’re actually experiencing depression? read article

37min listen One Man’s Impossible Quest — To Make Friends in Adulthood Billy Baker, journalist and author of We Need to Hang Out: A Memoir of Making Friends, talks about how he came face-to-face with the anemic state of his own friendships and how he set out to try to do the miraculous - make friends in middle-age. listen to podcast

Sci-Fi Wisdom Battlestart Galatica Starbuck

"Listen, you may feel like hell. But, sometimes, lost is where you need to be. Just because you don't know your direction doesn't mean you don't have one." - Slick (Roark Critchlow), Battlestar Galatica

* * * When a significant loss happens. When a realization hits us in the face. When something wicked this way comes. We can feel lost.

Untethered. Uncertain. Cast aside.

Without anchor, compass, or forecast.

But feeling lost is still a feeling.

Being lost is still a place.

It's that dissonant chord, hanging in the air, yet unresolved.

Sometimes, that's were we need to be.

To being lost, Rae * * * P.S. A few resources for the week:

5min read 12 Things to Do When You Feel Lonely There's been some real lonely times in recent months. Even when surrounded by a rotating cast of quarantine buddies, and even though I'm a natural introvert home-body ... loneliness can still creep in. This was a great little article on some things to keep in mind when the lonely gets to us. read article

10min listen Mind-Body Connection thru a Stoic Perspective My new fav podcast has been Stoic Coffee Break - a weekly meditation on how Stoic principles can help us be better humans - and I thought this episode was particularly good. One of the hardest things that we have to deal with as humans is anxiety. The problem is that we are built to handle threats that don’t exist for most of us. Getting your brain to understand and appreciate that though is a whole other challenge to our modern world. listen to podcast

Sci-Fi Wisdom Battlestar Number Six

"But are they truly incomprehensible? In my experience, communication is a matter of patience, imagination. I would like to believe that these are qualities that we have in sufficient measure. " - Jean-Luc Picard (Patrick Stewart), Star Trek TNG

* * * I've heard a few things recently that have left me baffled. Stumped. Why? How could they do that? Did they really just say that? What the hell are they thinking?

It's hard to fight against the simple urge to just write it off, write them off. That's stupid. They're crazy. They don't know X. They don't see Y. Delete. Unfriend. Block.

The gap grows wider. Trenches deeper. High horses higher.

In one of my all time fav Trek episodes titled Darmok, the crew contacts a culture with an entirely story-based language system. Without knowing the fable's references to characters, places, and lessons, understanding what they are saying seems impossible. Yet Picard questions: are they truly incomprehensible?

With those I don't understand in my own life... are they truly incomprehensible?

Or might it just take some patience, some imagination, to see past the something. They way it's stated, the approach, the wording, the tone. What's beyond those barriers to comprehension? Even if we ultimately still don't see eye to eye, maybe we can see shoulder to shoulder.

To "Darmok and Jalad at Tanagra",

Rae * * * P.S. A few resources for the week: 5min read The Best Sleeping Positions for Lower Back Pain Back sore after sleep? Tossing around like a dying fish most the time? Here's some useful info - with pictures! - on why some sleep positions may be better than others. read article

56min listen The Case for Blue Collar Work With Mike Rowe Remember Dirty Jobs? Man, that show was great - and it's been rebooted! Coming back early July! So stoked. Definitely an influence in why I support and encourage trade work. In this interview Mike Rowe speaks on how the denigration of trade work has left us economically and spiritually poorer, both on the individual and national level. Despite the 2017 air date, it feels even truer now. listen to podcast

6+hour read Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World I'm half way through this book by Cal Newport and think it's fantastic. A compelling research-based case with practical advise for daily application. My fav combo. "Deep work is like a super power in our increasingly competitive twenty-first century economy. And yet, most people have lost the ability to go deep - spending their days instead in a frantic blur of e-mail and social media, not realizing there's a better way." get the book

Sci-Fi Wisdom Battlestar Galatica Tigh

"One can begin to reshape the landscape with a single flower." - Spock (Leonard Nimoy), Star Trek TNG * * * It's yard work season. A frantic effort to get everything pruned, planted, plucked, and prepped for the coming summer.

My project this past weekend involved donning a plastic head-to-toe coverall, rubber gloves, and rubber boots. An outfit not well suited to the humidity, but perfect for the task at hand: pulling up poison ivy.

I noticed several fledgling leaves of three in the northwest corner a few weeks back. Noted it. Put it on the to do list, to where it was promptly buried by many other, much more fun projects.

But as Spock noted, a single flower can do much. So when its tendrils made their way to the dog's Fetch Area, well, it had to go.

Three trash bags and three buckets of sweat later, it was gone (for now). I was stunned by how quickly the vines had covered so much distance, in so little time. A single flower, much like thoughts and ideas, really can reshape a landscape.

To reshapes, Rae * * * P.S. A few resources for the week:

60min listen Overcoming the Comfort Crisis Our world has never been more convenient and comfortable - food delivery, endless entertainment, climate control. A growing number of us don’t have to put in much effort, much less face any risk or challenge, in order to sustain our daily lives. In some ways, this quantum leap is a great boon. But in other ways, author Michael Easter describes how it’s absolutely killing our minds, bodies, and spirit. listen to podcast

6+hr read What Happened to You? Conversations on Trauma, Resilience, and Healing This is a truly beautiful book. Practically useful, researched-based dialogue, artful visual diagrams. Honestly though, I wouldn't expect anything less from a book written by Oprah Winfrey and neuroscientist/physiologist Dr. Bruce Perry. It's stunning. find the book And if you don't have time for the full read, check out this interview with the two authors on Brene Brown's Unlocking Us podcast.

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Hey there! My name's Raechel. I'm the author of The Bodies We Live In blog. I'm also a licensed massage therapist and owner of Massage Sci in Holland, Michigan.


In my free time, I enjoy writing about wellness; researching pain science; trying to grow things in my garden; being far too fond of semi-colons; and avid sci-fi nerding.