Ballooning…..High on life

Coming to work this morning I saw a hot air balloon way off in the distance.   You only get to see these great machines if you are up early enough as they generally land no later than around 8am.  The heat can do funny things to all that gas in the silk sack.

I see the balloons very often around our way in the mornings, I even saw one land in the backyard of the little country gift shop on the highway, Meaning to Stop, is what the shop is called.  It actually landed in amongst the machinery next door if you are familiar with the area.

Every time I see a hot air balloon I remember a time when we lived in Nowra when my boss was given an opportunity to share some rides in a hot air balloon.  I jumped at the chance as it is very expensive if you are paying.  I also got to take my two eldest boys with me.  I have to paint the picture of the basket for you, it is a huge woven cane basket and the steps to get in are woven holes in the side of the basket.  My sons at that time were sitting in the bottom of the basket looking out through these holes.  They loved it but they were a bit short and one of them asked me if they could look over the side as we were crossing the Shoalhaven River.  I said of course, thinking he was just going to stand on the step and peek over the edge.  When he pulled himself up to the top of the basket my heart came up my throat as I felt he was about to launch himself over the side.   The scariest part of the whole ride!

Anyway that is not what I wanted to write about.  The feeling of being in the basket up high in the sky is extremely peaceful.  You see the balloon travels with the wind currents, so you don’t feel much wind, the only time is when you are going up or down and travel through currents going the other way, even then I don’t think I noticed any.  This feeling is very similar to the feeling I have been experiencing lately with my friends and family.

After a fairly long time battling depression I am becoming very clear in my head, only giving headspace to those things that matter.  Over Christmas I was only off work for a very short time, a week and a half.  In that time our family caught up with so many good friends and family and the time really flew by.   We had loads of fun and the fun has continued on, although I suspect it is more a feeling in me than the fun continuing, I have been making sure I have fun no matter what I am doing.

In short I guess the balloon this morning reminded me of how high I am feeling at the moment and how much there is to look forward to when you open your eyes wide to see everything that is happening around you and accepting it and enjoying it.  The key I keep in my mind all the time is that if I start to feel down, then there is something I need to do, talk to someone about something getting to me, stop doing something that is not sitting right with me, start doing something I keep meaning to do….much like the balloon pilot has to turn the burner on to keep his altitude we have to turn the burner on to realise what it is we need to do to keep our own altitude.

Have Fun and Keep In Touch people!

Matt

Managing Holiday Stress

I received this in a work newsletter and thought it to be relevant to share so here it is…

Understanding what may cause you stress during the holidays is the first step to managing it.    Setting high expectations and doing too much can leave us feeling overwhelmed.     Spending time with relatives or, conversely, missing our relatives, can stir up emotions.

The weather can contribute to our holiday mood as it gets hotter or colder (depending where you live in the world) and daylight increases/decreases.
Suggestions for making this holiday season less stressful:
  • Limit your schedule by selecting only the activities, parties, events, and traditions that have the most meaning and give the most joy to you.
  • Make healthy food and drink choices that will leave you feeling good and with no regrets come 2010.
  • Set a reasonable budget for the season and stick to it.
  • Exercise can be a wonderful mood elevator.
  • Spending time in well lit environments can be helpful.
Most important, seek help if your holiday stress becomes too great or you are feeling overly sad and/or disinterested in things you once enjoyed.
Have a safe, stressless, enjoyable Christmas.
Cheers,
Matt