Spring Forward ZZZ!


The usual ritual of clock re-setting occurred with gusto on all floors of the Hasted residence yesterday evening…about 8pm! In my head, I had given myself an extra hour in bed that morning to counter-balance what I was about to lose last night. There is logic there, promise!
I was surprised this morning when I woke about 8am, that I didn’t do the normal…ooo well, it really is 9am mental calculation in my head. I just thought, hurrah…it won’t be dark until later this evening. THAT is the joy of BST. The realisation that I can still do things in the evening without feeling like it is time to roll into the duvet womb as soon as I get home from work.
With that feeling of night-time hibernation at 5pm, our bodies are purely responding like our ancestors to the phases of the moon and sun. It is a natural process in our unnatural way of life. We have altered the timing of our body’s rhythm and we wonder why we have problems sleeping! I noticed that there has been research into how the change to BST impacts our well-being.
In an article from the Mail Online today, it says that research has shown that heart attacks increase during the spring time change, as well as more traffic incidents, injuries and general grumpiness! Ouch…..
It is not rocket science to understand that however we try to alter our lives, the pull of Mother Nature will always override the human need to control. With the joy of longer evenings comes the penance of feeling out of kilter for a while. On balance, I’ll take it! Welcome to happiness….spring is my time of year.

Spring is nature’s way of saying, ‘Let’s party!’ Robin Williams

Dream BIG, Sparkle MORE, Shine BRIGHTLY

International Happiness Day



Awaking on International Happiness Day, I opened the curtains to find the usual greyness of Spring greeting me like a blanket of misery. The sunshine definitely at bay, that immediate unconscious lift it brings not occurring, how can I begin my happiness day? Well, I am alive, fairly healthy, with a brain, a roof over my head, food in the cupboard, clothes to wear…not a bad start I’d say.

The thing is, we tend to try to make grand gestures on ‘special days’ and that is where we go wrong. Today is a new day, but no more or less important than the last.  Our happiness should not be dictated from the external world, the core of who we are comes from within. It has taken me many of my nearly 44 years to really appreciate that concept. I used to envy those who would wake refreshed and cheery in the mornings, ignoring their happy salutations as I huffed and grunted my way through the first part of my morning. Now, I am better! My internal happiness gage has shifted hugely with age and experience. Life is great. If only I could have control and sculpt a better external world, my happiness cup would overflow!

So when you are asked how you are…take a breath and think before replying with the negative moans, try and tell people the positives, it really does have an impact. Appreciate what you have and live for today. See the good in your world.  Pass a smile; spread the happiness.  

“It takes no more time to see the good side of life than to see the bad.” ― Jimmy Buffett


Dream BIG, Sparkle MORE, Shine BRIGHTLY

Mental Health of the Young





It was interesting to read the article from the BBC News site that stated in its headline that we are in need of improving the mental health of children.  Who knew? After being amongst the teaching profession for the past 20 years, I have seen the impact of the modern world on staff, it is no wonder that now the attention has turned towards the pupils.  In highly pressurised age of data, league tables, budgets and expectation the teaching profession is in danger of losing those who joined for the love of imparting knowledge to the individual; of nurturing young minds to develop to be their best selves. Those teachers can see that the sheer enjoyment of being in the classroom with their class has been hijacked by the bureaucracy and heavy-handedness of an education system that is past its best and is in need of an overhaul to meet today’s way of learning.

It is this age of being accessible 24/7, of being accountable to everyone through technology, of having a more fragmented family structure that impacts on the children of today. Where can they get any peace? Where can they gain a sense of perspective when life gets so hard? Far too many people are there to offer an opinion, to wound and hurt via social media – it isn’t just adults who suffer the indignity of the keyboard troll. At least as adults we have built strategies to deal with all of this. We can turn off our tech (well….) we can retreat for some solitude, even if it is in our heads, whilst locked in the bathroom having a well-deserved soak.

What price do our children pay for the world that we have given them? There is less independence, more pressure to achieve, greater fear of encountering a huge debt to enter the world of further education – all things that I did not have to worry about.  With a nation who rely on drugs to try to regain a sense of equilibrium is it any wonder that this culture has fed down to the young people of today? I cannot see how this is sustainable moving into the future.  There needs to be a shift.

So what can we do for the next generation, the millennials? Well, I think that we can take a leaf out of the past. It is time to teach happiness, as this is one thing I genuinely feel is lacking within many of us.  We are more robotic in our habits and the work / life balance for many is totally skewed.

Imagine a waking unafraid of the day ahead, imagine being happy and content and knowing how to harness fear, use simple strategies to change your mindset. How powerful would that be? What if this was taught in school from an early age? What if we could re-shape the future generations to take control of their wellbeing?  Change moves us out of our comfort zones, it moves us on to better. But change is what we, as humans fight. I am worried about what comes next if something does not shift. Consciousness is happiness.

Dream BIG, Sparkle MORE, Shine BRIGHTLY

Happiness Science – don’t mind if I do!

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by Steven Parton

Having been sent the above article by a friend, I found myself reading, digesting and re-reading something that made me think harder than I have had to do for a while!

Happiness is often seen as a fluffy construct, a bandwagon for those who like to chant and talk to the plants. It is a reaction given by people who do not understand, who are not happy themselves.  In our modern generation  there are those who embrace and ‘get’ the more esoteric and ethereal side of well-being and those who firmly believe that you should just, ‘get on with it’ as our spiritual side is not fact, it has no bearing on the real world. It is to this breed that I say, read the article. Look at the science. Ahh, science…. yes, if things can be explained by real ‘stuff’ then they are most definitely true.

So, we are wired to accept the highly convoluted words and jargon of the science world, even when we really have no clue as to what has been said. But when someone puts it in layman’s terms with added visual element, even I can cope with the concept! And what a concept it is.


To think that we can grow the synapses in our brain to move closer with every thought is exciting. To also think that we have the power to create the synapses that are the closest together, with what and how we think, creating our default personality is amazing. We can literally re-shape our processes. It is however, only us who have the capacity to re-formulate for the better – no one else will do that for you.  Since training as a homeopath many years ago  (not an area that science and I agree on!) and following my spiritual path to listen, help and heal, I have become accustomed to being thankful for what I have in my life. I look and learn from the positives and negatives that occur, for no one has the perfect life. Whilst my inner core happiness is strong, my external world is challenging, often very challenging. Dwelling on the events that I have no control over or that wound has no health benefit in my brain and body.

“Accept what is, let go of what was and have faith in what will be.” Sonia Ricotti

Spending time with like-minded people to rewire your brain to think in happiness and positivity is something I have tried to do more of as I have become older. It is easier to ignore the ‘mood-hoovers’ and move away from the drainage merchants. Age has its benefits!

We all have choices, we can change our mindsets – metaphorically and physically.

It is a no-brainer, or rather a re-brainer!
Dream BIG, Sparkle MORE, Shine BRIGHTLY