Mindfulness moments on Nova Scotia’s craggy shores

Mindfulness moments on Nova Scotia’s craggy shores

Mindfulness moments on Nova Scotia’s craggy shores

We recently learned that many of our Landing Strong community members are rock hounds. I thought it was just me, wandering the beaches of Nova Scotia gleefully gathering prized specimens. It turns out, it’s a shared passion. We are united in the joy we glean from finding beauty in our craggy shores.

Is there something simple and beautiful that helps you keep your thoughts in the moment?

– Appreciating the afterglow of a sunset as the pink hue reflects on water.
– Enjoying a cool iced tea on a hot day.
– Hearing the sound of waves crashing on a long expanse of sandy beach.

It’s often the simple things that ground us. Rather than actively working to problem solve the future, or process the past, these activities hold our attention, actively engaging us in the present. There is something calming about going out in the world with the sole intention of nothing bigger than finding the next great rock.

Warm thoughts,

Belinda Seagram, Ph.D., R. Psych.
Executive Director, Landing Strong

Thankful for partners who pick us up

Thankful for partners who pick us up

Thankful for partners who pick us up

Tomorrow is a big day for me. Friends and family are flying in from across Canada to witness the marriage of my son Kyle to his beautiful bride Kaitlin. What a pleasure it will be to celebrate the joy of two happy young people who form such a strong partnership. This is the beginning of the next stage of their journey together.

I can’t help but reflect on the role of partners, spouses and friends in being witness to our lives, celebrating the good moments as well as offering support and lifting our spirits when it may be needed.

In group, we perform a similar function for one another, celebrating the wins, commiserating with challenges, and ensuring no one is walking alone.

I wanted the opportunity to share my joy with you, just as you so often share your life’s important moments with us.

Warm thoughts,

Belinda Seagram, Ph.D., R. Psych.
Executive Director, Landing Strong

Conversations that matter

Conversations that matter

Conversations that matter

We recently had a visit from Invictus Games athlete Darrell Ling. Darrell brought a yellow bench that he built out of completely recycled wood, which we are proud to have sitting by our front door. The Invictus Games introduced “The Yellow Bench” as a way of creating shared spaces for people – even strangers – to have conversations that matter. 

Athletes were invited to bring the concept of The Yellow Bench back home to their respective countries and communities.

In the Invictus Games, each athlete competes in 2 individual sports and a team sport. Darrell brought his competitive spirit to Archery, Sit-down Rowing, and Wheelchair Basketball where he successfully scored a basket in the final minutes of the game. 

Darrell shared that one of the most meaningful aspects of the Invictus Games was the opportunity to meet other athletes who understood his experiences, without needing an explanation. He described the implicit understanding amongst the Athletes of what it took to get there; something that doesn’t always exist in the civilian world. Darrell also noted with pride that the person in last place got the loudest cheers, something that warmed his heart.  Competing and finishing an event requires a tremendous amount of preparation, training, determination and courage. Not all accomplishments are marked with a medal, but this certainly doesn’t detract from the success. 

He was also thrilled to meet Prince Harry in person. 

We invite you to take seat and connect the next time you visit us. 

Warm thoughts,

Belinda Seagram, Ph.D., R. Psych.
Executive Director, Landing Strong

Shouldering things together

Shouldering things together

Shouldering things together

Just because a problem has been around for a long time doesn’t mean it’s there to stay.There is something intimidating about an issue that we’ve been carrying for a long time. It can almost take on its own life. In my experience, the longevity of a problem does not indicate the difficulty it will take to sort it out.It is often a matter of looking more deeply, or through a different lens. This emphasizes the importance of not carrying things alone. By talking things out loud, and being open to new perspectives, it opens the door for change to occur. Positive shifts happen.If you have been carrying around a weight for a long time and aren’t sure how to get rid of it or lighten your load, we hope you’ll consider giving us a call.

Warm thoughts,

Belinda Seagram, Ph.D., R. Psych.
Executive Director, Landing Strong

Preparing for the aftermath in Nova Scotia: how we can help

Preparing for the aftermath in Nova Scotia: how we can help

Preparing for the aftermath in Nova Scotia: how we can help

In times like this, it’s easy to feel powerless, wishing that we could do more. We are incredibly grateful to our first responders who have been working tirelessly over the past week to contain wildfires across the province.Being a small province, we feel the impact strongly when family, friends, or people in our community are facing undue hardship.For those who have been trained in first responder roles but are unable to work due to injury, the draw to active service can be particularly powerful.It’s important to remember that there are many lines to fighting a fire. There are those on the front, and there are multiple levels of invaluable and necessary supports who stand behind them.What each of us does makes a difference.

  • Family members of those who are on the front line are making sacrifices and staying supportive while those they love move toward danger.
  • Community members are opening their homes, readying beds and preparing meals for those who need them.
  • Businesses are contributing through food donations and free services
  • Many people are reaching out through text and using social media proactively to check on those they care about, offering support and letting them know they’re not alone
  • Farmers and friends are taking in livestock and pets, ensuring their safety. We heard of a local farmer who took in 200 horses that needed to be evacuated.
  • For the most part, people are using common sense, keeping out of wooded areas and following evaluation orders and safety restrictions as required.

Perhaps one of the most powerful things we can do, is to ensure that we are taking the time to have an open ear and heart for those who have been affected, understanding the varying emotions they will experience through this process.  As always, we stand behind those who serve their communities. We recognize that there are very real injuries that arise from such selfless service. As an organization, our mandate is preparing for the aftermath of such significant events. If you’d like to support first responders in accessing the mental health care that they need and deserve, please follow this link to donate.

Warm thoughts,

Belinda Seagram, Ph.D., R. Psych.
Executive Director, Landing Strong

A community that rocks!

A community that rocks!

A community that rocks!

Each month, members of our community gather for a group program, designed to support ongoing health. This is an opportunity to check in on a regular basis with how we are doing, offer support when needed, and celebrate each other’s growth. Something has struck me in recent months. As members work to find new avenues of creative self-expression, even with no artistic backgrounds, beautiful things emerge, not just with the art, but also in the relationships we have with one another. In this month’s Maintaining Health, among other things, we discovered the hidden joy of rock wrapping. It never really matters what activity we are doing, I always seem to leave these sessions feeling connected, relaxed, happy and refreshed.This program is available for anyone who has successfully completed any one of our full Landing Strong programs. Mark the summer dates on your calendar and let us know if you to come: June 15th, July 13th, August 17th.Our Friday Healthy Living program also spends the afternoons at Makers Studio. It’s an upbeat program designed to look at what’s really important in our lives and how to bring more of that in. Give us a call.

Warm thoughts,

Belinda Seagram, Ph.D., R. Psych.
Executive Director, Landing Strong