Healthy Nutrition for the Mind
‘Karen and Jay share thoughts on the importance of nourishing the mind and spirit.’
As humans, we tend to think about our physical nutrition. We give great thought to the foods we eat to nourish our body. But, at least equally important, and probably much more important, we need to take great care in how we nourish our mind. We need to feed our mind with positive, uplifting thoughts to enliven our spirit; with challenging intellectual exercises to sharpen our thinking; with art, literature and music to enrich our souls, and with meaningful social interaction to give our lives purpose. In essence, we need to take control of the diet for our mind.
One great place to start each day is actually the night before. Clear your mind of worries and think thoughts of gratitude for the day that has just passed. Awake with a positive spirit and a sense that the new day will be the best day yet. Go out of your way to see each obstacle as an exciting challenge and opportunity. Each of which contains the seeds of its own solution. Reach out to someone else and take a genuine interest in their well-being. Offer to lend a hand – with no expectation of anything in return.
Then, take time to feed your mind. Whether it’s reading or some other form of entertainment – make sure that you’re finding ways to stretch, to learn new things, to engage with the world. And, when you do this – day after day – over time the impact will be enormous. You will be amazed by the growth in your abilities, your insight and your overall mental well-being.
At one time it was generally thought that the human mind matured at a certain age, and then stopped its development. But today we know that this is not true. The mind has a nearly infinite ability to adapt, to grow and improve. It’s incredibly elastic. And, what you feed it makes all the difference!
So, as you go about your life – you may find it useful to reflect on an old saying – but apply it in a slightly different way. You may have heard the expression about diet or food that goes: ‘You are what you eat.’ Well, in a very parallel way, the same is quite true in terms of the mind. The health of your mind and is also a consequence of how it is fed. So, take great care to nourish your mind.
Art, Culture and Food for the Mind in New Hampshire
In 2019, CNN reported former George W. Bush saying, “Painting relaxes him.” The once commander-in-chief was inspired to take up painting after reading how Winston Churchill enjoyed painting and how it helped him process and bring balance to his life. As much as physical health is so important so is mental health and your ability to digest art and culture for a healthier and better life is one of the keys
We are very fortunate here in the Granite State as our New Hampshire State Council of the Arts, a state agency founded in 1965, offers a variety of enriching programs. One in particular is their ‘Arts in Health Program.’ This wonderful initiative partners with other state and local agencies, non-profits, and a number of organizations who provide services to our most vulnerable populations. Through collaboration these art education programs help with physical therapy for seniors, reflection and emotional release for those affected by substance abuse and addiction, as well as bringing together those who feel isolated and alone. What the new State Council of the Arts is doing is truly remarkable, and we are thankful to everyone involved.
Meanwhile, in the Queen City you can appreciate captivating exhibits and pieces of art at Currier Museum of Art or take in the area’s unique history through a series of photographs showcasing Manchester’s sports programs through the years which are on display at the Millyard Museum. Or simply, take a moment to visit the State House in Concord to see the historic murals and portraits of our State’s leaders that are on public display. Incredibly uplifting!
Or how bout over in Exeter? I invite you to pop over to the downtown gallery organized by the Seacoast Artist Association, an all=volunteer group of artists and art lovers. And of course, my hometown favorite, definitely make sure to visit the Newport Library Art Center which features local artists, displays and fun exhibits. Fran and Kate do a truly terrific job in making the Art Center a ‘must see’ attraction.
I could go on and on. But the truth is – there are so many great things to do and see right here in the Granite State that will bring nourishment to the mind and enrich your soul. With the cooler months ahead of us and as we look for things to do, I encourage everyone to visit a gallery, see a show, or even sign up for a class. Your mind will truly appreciate the good ‘food!’
Fall – Our Favorite Season
There is nothing like Fall in New Hampshire with the crisp air and the trees that look like they are ablaze with deep ambers and bright orange flames. Fall of course signals the end of summer and the beginning of winter, but Granite Stater’s are perhaps their busiest at this time of year. With pumpkin and apple harvest festivals happening in many small towns there is a strong sense of community and a certain energy in the air.
Certainly, there is no better place to be during Fall in New Hampshire than the great outdoors. People come from around the world to enjoy our state’s natural beauty. While these out-of-state leaf-peepers may sometimes appear to be a bit out of place, I view their presence in our state as a huge compliment. Not only do they come to spend their money and bolster our economy, but it really is a compliment that they choose our state as the escape from theirs. We should always strive to greet these visitors with kindness and gratitude and while the traffic might be a bit of a challenge at times, think of the message it sends by their presence!
With Fall in full swing, I urge everyone to get outdoors and enjoy everything our state has to offer.
Positive Profile of the Week: The Wiz!
Icons, we have them in sports, in history, in business, and more. In the City of Manchester few will dispute that Ray Wieczorek is an icon – widely admired for his steadfast leadership as Mayor that brought innovation, culture, history, and a rebirth to the Queen City.
Those who are honored to have known Ray refer to him by his nickname ‘The Wiz.’ An insurance company owner in the Queen City, the Wiz first got active in the community serving as the Chairman of the Manchester Housing and Development Authority the late 1980s. Seeing first-hand the need for transformation and guidance to turn the Queen City around, he transitioned control of his business to his family, and ventured into politics, being elected Mayor of Manchester in 1989.
Under his 10-year leadership, the City of Manchester achieved great progress, change, and experienced new life. In the mid 90’s, The Wiz led the charge for Manchester’s new Airport Terminal which resulted in a major economic boost for the City including new revenue and jobs. Wanting to bring new life into the downtown, Ray Wieczorek made it his priority to bring a Civic Center to the Queen City, even sacrificing his own political career to seeing it through. He knew that the creation of Civic Center in the heart of Downtown Manchester would help bring the downtown area back to greatness and it surely did. Today, the downtown area is packed with restaurants and businesses, the mill yard is the center for innovation and education, and every day new companies are eyeing Manchester for their future base of operations.
The City of Manchester and the State of New Hampshire owe a great deal to Ray Wieczorek. For if this small business owner hadn’t gotten involved to make his city a better place to live, work and raise a family, many of the places we enjoy today wouldn’t be here.
Mayor Ray saw the potential for greatness and made an immensely positive difference through vision, sacrifice, determination, and heart. Thank you, Ray Wieczorek!
Quotes of the Week: Food for the Mind
“We should learn as a people to pay good money for the food that feeds the soul and mind, same as we do for the food that feeds the body.” — Nana Awere Damoah
“What drains your spirit drains your body. What fuels your spirit fuels your body.” – Caroline Myss
“A calm mind brings inner strength and self-confidence, so that’s very important for good health.” – Dalai Lama
“To ensure good health: eat lightly, breathe deeply, live moderately, cultivate cheerfulness, and maintain an interest in life.” – William Londen
“The concept of total wellness recognizes that our every thought, word, and behavior affects our greater health and well-being. And we, in turn, are affected not only emotionally but also physically and spiritually.” – Greg Anderson