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Cecelia J. Bonwick is the pseudonym of Jane Smith

Mindset, Mind Maps and Memory Aids

August 8, 2017

Hello Readers,

      Hope everyone is well and safe in whichever part of the world you live in.

     Often life can be hectic and it is hard to change a thought pattern, process or a habit. Now this can be specifically so for some with chronic illnesses and brain fog. I hope, in this blog. that I can assist you to be able to focus on ways that may assist you in changing a habit that you may wish to fix.

      Mind maps are a great learning tool… memory aid… they also help to revise work completed. Today, there are apps and programs that we can use on our electronic devices… or we can draw them on paper. Sometimes, the electronic apps take a bit of playing with to be able to use effectively but are worth the hassle.

Mindset

Definition:
     A fixed mental attitude or disposition that predetermines a person's responses to and interpretations of situations. 2. An inclination or a habit. www.thefreedictionary.com/mindset

      The key selection of words here is ‘a person’s response to… a situation’. Even for the able-minded multitasking person, changing how one does something – or their response to something, isn’t easy. For those with a chronic illness, it may even require much more ‘willpower’.

     I still find changing mindset a challenge. As in many issues, being aware that there is a problem is the first step. But it doesn’t solve the issue. Especially if it involves the feelings of those we care about.

     Often, we tend to agree, forgetting that that ‘yes’ has consequences. Here is one example… the case with my gluten intolerance. If I am offered a food containing gluten, I have found myself saying yes and then I am in great pain a few hours or so after.

      My daughter says, “why did you say yes and eat it?”

     Good question! Usually, my brain is off somewhere else and doesn’t perceive that I have suffered this issue… more than once before… so my mindset is just a habitual response… it is not an informed and rational response. This is so easy when a chronically ill person is tired or just overwhelmed with the situation at hand. I am aware of that and therefore try and give myself some slack, but it often causes me to be angry at myself for just giving an absent minded irrational response.

So how can we correct our mindset?

1.     We must ‘own’ the issue. No one else is to blame. But we can ask for help.

2.     Be aware of the issue/mindset that needs correcting. There may be more than one. lol

3.     Recall why you need to change that mindset… I mean really, really connect your habitual problematic answer/action to that nasty habit or the resulting pain that happens from your response. Your response to that particular issue has to change so we need to cement that mindset… It might require a new chain of neurons to override the old ones.

4.     Imagine situations where the old mindset is liable to happen… it could be a place such as a shopping centre, work, home, meals… at family… friends… or it could be even a mood or emotion that either allow it or trigger it.

5.     Realise this/these particular trigger area/s will require you to use your new mindset.

6.     Focus hard on how you will respond in future to correct the issue.

7.     Connect your habit/issue, the trigger, the result… to your new response that will give you a desirable comfortable and safe outcome as a result of the new mindset.

8.     Sometimes, to get this new mindset working may require role play using your mind… the situation, the thought of what the negative outcome could be with the wrong response. Stop! Change that to see yourself giving an informed and decisive response that results in the positive outcome you desire.

     Be aware that a new mindset doesn’t just become permanent after the first test… so be persistent. Praise yourself mentally when you have used your new mindset response to correct the situation.

     If you fail, repeat the above process and maybe have a close friend actually practise the scenario with you… analysing verbally what the issue could be if you don’t use your new mindset… then give the positive response that will give you the desired outcome.

      Mental role play is a great back up plan for many learning areas. Sitting in the car waiting for someone… shut your eyes and use visualisation to ‘practise’ your guitar… while you wait… to hone your driving skills, use mental scenarios – not while driving the car but while resting at home - that could require your defensive driving skills and plan your response… so many different ways we can ‘train’ while stationary… never a reason to be bored. Lol.

Medical disclaimer: The articles here are only the author’s own personal opinion. Due to not being a medical practitioner of any form, any conflicting issues with harming habits or other habits should be discussed with your doctor.

Mind Maps

     Mind maps are a great tool for learning, note taking, revising or showing a particular set of outcomes to another person. They can be used for private use as well as in a business setting. Many people find them a great source for brainstorming. In my personal opinion, all children should be taught the benefits of mind mapping in school from an early age.

     In writing, mind maps can be used to summarise and organise chapters… an overview of the characters… information about regions/settings within a story…

     In maths, they can be used as revision cards. In some apps, the extensions can be condensed… this gives the student an opportunity to work the mathematical problem from the eye of the map. Then, when completed, click the extension to reveal the working of the problem so the student can check their knowledge… this is the case in most subjects where the student wishes to test themselves using these particular mind maps apps.

     Since MS word has shapes and icons, one can make up a simple basic mind map.  This one goes clockwise showing a mind map of my next novel.

 

Memory Aids

     “It is not a muscle but it behaves as a muscle. Strictly speaking and at the physical level, the brain is an organ, the most important one. However, there are some theories that describe the brain as a muscle in the sense that it can be trained to improve different cognitive functions like working memory or math skills.” Google.com.au

     Regardless of our brain capacity or our physical fitness, all of us need to work on ‘exercising’ the brain. Our brain, just like a bicep, behaves like a muscle… a very complex muscle and one of the most important in our body… it is the central system of our being.

     Many brain related issues have been corrected through forms of exercise for specific areas… Since it behaves like a muscle, it can deteriorate if not used and extended. Regardless of how brainy we think we are, keeping this muscle/organ exercised is extremely important. So, along with any exercise that you do, add brain exercise along with healthy eating.

Here are several memory aids

1.     Using the rooms of your house, number each one in order for easy retrieval. Add the items you want to remember  – one each to each room – give the item a bizarre mental image. Let’s say you need to remember milk – mentally see a cow standing in your bathroom sink looking at a bottle of milk… the more bizarre the image… the better the memory aid to recall. This ‘room’ method can be used from listing shopping items to presenting intricate public talks.

2.     Shopping lists can also be remembered using the alphabet. Pick the first three items and mentally place them alphabetically in your mind’s list.  Once these are concrete, gradually add more to the list concreting them mentally and alphabetically in order… recall and remember.

3.     The best one… lol… is the written method. Diaries and reminder lists. There are two problems with the written method… we need to remember to use them… then remember to refer to them... but when our memories are tired, we may need to resort to the old ways... even if using a device to list them in.

 

Brain Training

1.     Memory recall using a deck of cards. First, shuffle and place five cards face down. Turn them over one at a time memorising the numbers… turn them all back over… write the numbers down. If you can remember them easily… keep adding cards… once you feel you are mastering remembering the numbers… start remembering both the number and the card suite… 52 possibilities.

2.     Sudoku is a great game… free downloads… books in stores… games start at easy and progress to hard… nine boxes each with nine boxes… the idea is to get all nine numbers in each box as well as each row – horizontally and vertically – so that no number is used more than once for boxes and rows…

3.     Music is a great brain training aid… learn to read the music notes and sheets… learn to play an instrument… do not care if you are no Mozart… learn lyrics and sing…

4.     Enrol in an on-line course or two… something that is different from the normal focus of your day… art… criminal psychology… the environment… whatever extends your brain mass in a different direction. There are many on-line sites that provide free courses. Many of these do have a start and finish date... but there are other courses that are also self-paced.

5.     Writing… using words… create poems, stories or do your bibliography. Make a goal of at least eight hundred words per day. Learn grammar and rules so you can edit your writing. Great focus activity.

My busy person goal idea for Brain training is selecting three to five activities per day for as little as five minutes each… would suggest fifteen but five is better than none… such as learning a musical instrument… an educational game… writing a poem… card number memory game… the list is endless… but you need to enjoy and feel that you have achieved something different… not just work, food and television.

Diet Tips

So far to date, I have lost 20 kg. This has been a road of discovery. Once, I could lose weight relatively easy… but this time, each gram has been extracted with a lot of elimination of food groups which are considered healthy while listening to my body and its individual reactions to foods, food types and intolerances.

1.     Drink lots of water – winter and summer to flush the system out.

2.     Re-arrange your meal order… the old saying – breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince… tea like a pauper is true. This is a truly a great way of eating to lose weight… we do not need a three-course meal to go to bed on… a heavy meal that can be stored as fat… then to jump out of bed and refuel the body that really is still three-quarters full…

     That is not an excuse to skip breakfast… some people find it hard to make breakfast the main meal… If that is the case, then make lunch your main meal…  but do not skip breakfast… skipping breakfast is like taking a plane on a flight without first fueling up… disastrous for any dieter.

3.     For the meat eaters, check the type of meat you are eating. For some people, the liver/digestive tract doesn’t process meats equally. We have found that beef can affect our weight lost negatively. Fish – not crumbed – but done plainly with maybe added lemon, garlic and pepper… can be your best weight loss meat… along with a healthy salad and no-sugar low carb mayonnaise. We also use tin Salmon - maybe not the best healthy alternative - but for a quick lunch on the go, it works for us.

Medical disclaimer: The articles here are only the author’s own personal opinion. Due to not being a medical practitioner of any form, any dietary or eating issues should be discussed with your doctor.

My next blog will give homeschooling ideas and also more diet tips.

Kadi’s review

Hey guys! Well we'll be brief today the book I am featuring today is: 'The Doctor's Lady' by Jody Hedlund. This book is about two people who had their hearts set on becoming missionaries in the early 1800's but due to board changes they weren't allowed to be single so they married for convenience. This is a clean historical romance and is quite fast moving unlike a lot Oregon trail themed novels. I absolutely loved this book but it was the author's notes that convinced me to share it with you guys. The book is actually based on one of the first European women to make the trek on what was later to become known as the Oregon trail... from what I can understand the Author, Jody Hedlund, has actually used this remarkable  woman's journal to give background and historical factuality to the book. It is fiction but some of the main stuff was more or less based on fact, which I loved. I hope you guys will love it just as much as I did .

You can get it at amazon Here.

 

Well that's all for today

Take Care

Cecelia J.

  

 

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