"…By what stretch of arrogance do you think a life form that looks like you is more important than a life form that doesn’t?”Joel Salatin

Nothing is more beneficial to your wellbeing than to look for and acknowledge those parts of everyday life that you enjoy.

"If you are happy where you are now, why does it matter how painful it was to get there?" -- Abraham

"It is no bad thing to celebrate a simple life." -- Bilbo Baggins a.k.a. The Hobbit by JRR Tolkien

"And forget not that the earth delights to feel your bare feet, and the winds long to play in your hair." -- Kahill Gibran

“And forget not

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Learning the Value of Relaxation

I have been familiar with guided imagery for relaxing for many years.  My mother had a series of tapes that  supposedly had subliminal messages on them.  The man's voice on the cassettes was purposely monotonous, but it was distracting to me, for some unknown reason.  My kids liked his voice, though. They said it was soothing.

Many years ago, my son, Ronnie, the DJ, used one of my mother's relaxation cassettes in the intro of one of his recordings which he named "Optimism".  It starts out with the man's voice, then as he speaks, music begins quietly behind the voice.  As it proceeds, the music is enhanced, and the voice starts to echo.  The man continues, "Imagine with me that you are out in nature, that it is a most magnificent beautiful day.  The sky is blue and there is an occasional puff of white cloud over head. The sun is brilliant and golden and directly above you. "

The tempo quickens as he continues but it is still soft and feels like it is building.  There is some more narrative.  As he says "Relax and let go," an emphatic drum beat sounds and the music begins.  "Optimism" is still one of my favorites of all Ronnie's recordings.  It is one which took a lot of planning, and editing and "doing it over and over again" to get it to happen -- just right .  I've listened to it so many times now that all I have to do to relax under most circumstances, is to "take a long - slow - deep breath -- and relax." Thank you DJ Ronnie Bruno!  I still love it!

Several years ago, I bought a new "guided imagery" cassette for the purpose of helping me lose weight.  It was by BelleRuth Naperstek. I love her voice!  The music behind her voice is soothing and emotionally rousing at the same time. In my opinion, the information on the recording is essential knowledge for those seeking to improve their sense of wellbeing.

But I lost it.

I've been looking all over for it since Ronnie was diagnosed, hoping that if I could find it, it would help both of us reconnect with our own quiet places in the midst of such turmoil.  My search for it intensified after he passed away because I was having so much difficulty staying tuned in to the joy that was present in my life, all around me, every single day -- even in his absence.  I knew it was there but I couldn't focus on it.

Last week, I found the cassette!  I was so happy to be able to get to listen to it, feel it again, to reap the benefits of it as I had done before.  But it is a cassette and I only have one small, battery operated cassette player to play it on -- and I didn't know where that was -- either!  So --- I put the tape someplace -- and now I can't find it -- again.

Something happened last week that was so upsetting, confusing and infuriating, I was questioning the validity and value of a certain aspect of my life.  When it happened, I ALMOST cried. But I took a few minutes to bolster myself, to remind myself of the value of going with the flow, of giving the benefit of the doubt and forgiving our trespassers, that is -- those who seek to diminish us in some way.

Doubts, disappointment and disillusionment bombarded me the rest of the day. Thank goodness, Ashley Josephine, the instructor at "Relax! Wichita Falls" downtown at Breathe Yoga, had emailed me my recording from the Wednesday night relaxation session, so I had it to help me release some of the negativity from that incident. Saturday, though was still a constant battle to convince myself to let it go.

Previously, when I searched the internet for BellRuth Naperstek, I was spelling her last name wrong. The search feature on my computer didn't have the ability to connect my spelling with the proper  spelling.  Technology is moving forward almost at the speed of sound, though, and last night, when I searched for "Bell Ruth Knapperstack", the search engine found her AND the wonderful recording that I had used and loved and dreamed about finding for all this time.

Sometimes, I build things up in my mind to be more than they are, but this was not the case with BelleRuth Naperstek's recording.  I clicked the link (below), stretched out on the bed and settled in to listen. It is as powerful now as it was when I first listened to it ten years ago.  My understanding of how the world works, has increased and evolved, which makes what she says even more effective.

The most important aspect of this recording is that she guides  the listener to understand that it is vital to our health and wellbeing to relinquish the negative and hateful thoughts most of us have about our bodies. The first time I heard her say, "My body is my ally, my oldest friend and steadiest companion," I felt that new knowledge sink deep into my being.  At that point in my life, I was not free to explore the mind/body connection to the extent I would have liked to, so the information eventually was forgotten or pushed so far back, it was not retrievable without appropriate coaxing.

Listening to it again, though, brought the information forward in a big way.  Although this recording is designed to help people learn to accept themselves the way they are presently, in order to bring about the changes in their body they are hoping for, the positive boost that it gives in the overall attitude about what our bodies are, how they work and how we see ourselves, is simply invaluable.

One of the worst plagues in U.S. history is  -- low self esteem -- and although many have their theories on how to fix the problem, no one has been able to do it, and those who do know, are not reaching enough people.

If we could see the beauty, the absolute awesomeness of the intelligence in every single cell of our physical being, regardless of whether our reflection in the mirror compares to the beauties in the limelight, we might begin to accept the fact that regardless of what those shallow, narrow-minded people in Hollywood tell us -- we are okay.

If we could figure out how to fill our CHILDREN with the knowledge that they are fine  -- just the way they are, we probably wouldn't have to look for solutions to the other problems that come from feeling bad about one's self.

If you  could see yourself through the eyes of your loving Creator, whatever you imagine that  entity to be, what do you think you would see?

You can check out BelleRuth Naperstek's inspiring recording at


Other recordings from Belle Ruth Naperstek can be found on this website  www.healthjourneys.com


  1. Well said Mother!! :) Love you!

  2. Hi Paula. Great post. I remember listening to the first set of tapes when I was a child. I would use the to fall asleep. Any idea the name of them?

  3. Hi Paula. Great post. I remember listening to the first set of tapes when I was a child. I would use the to fall asleep. Any idea the name of them?