Episode 19: How can we connect to ourselves, to others, and to Nature? with Christina Echevarria

Do you feel that you are truly connected to yourself, to others, and to Nature? What does it mean to suffer from ‘nature deficit disorder’? How can we use ancient rituals such as tea ceremonies and sharing circles to bring about a more connected, conscious world?

ChristinaChristina Echevarria, MSc is a Transformational Mentor, Breathworker and Ceremonialist based in St. Petersburg, Florida. She is devoted to serving her community (virtually and locally) in ways that empower embodied awakening, heart-centered transformation, holistic healing, and authentic connections to ourselves, to others and to the Earth. I met her during our MSc course, where we were two of the only people who seemed to recognise the importance of spending time in nature for our overall wellbeing.

In this episode, we delve into everything from heart-opening cacao ceremonies to how we can help society to face the existential crisis presented by the latest climate science. We discuss the importance of rituals and rites to bring us in line with others and ourselves, and emphasise how vital it is that we are able to recognise that we are part of nature.

Listen here: http://thewayweconnect.buzzsprout.com/160260/1796407-how-can-we-connect-to-ourselves-to-others-and-to-nature-with-christina-echevarria 

Resources:

Christina’s website Stellar Shift – https://www.thestellarshift.com/

My MSc thesis – 30 Minutes in Nature a Day Can Increase Mood, Well-Being, Meaning in Life and Mindfulness: Effects of a Pilot Programme

Article – Children spend half the time playing outside than their parents did
Article – 3/4 of UK children spend less time outdoors than prison inmates
Article – People spend most of their waking hours staring at screens

Book – Richard Louv – Last Child in the Woods

Article: 10,000 – 100,000 species going extinct every year

Article – It’s official, spending time in nature is good for you

I also recommend Project Wild Thing, a documentary I was a *tiny* bit involved with back in 2015 (I helped them get a couple of screenings in Welsh cinemas) – https://www.thewildnetwork.com/inspiration/project-wild-thing

Episode 12: Wanderlust, Adaptability, Chimps and the Velvet Revolution – What does it mean to connect to a place?

How can we feel a sense of connection with a new place? Is it easier to fall in love with some cities or countries than with others? Are some of us just more able to adapt to change than others, and is this a blessing or a curse?

61665097_356121341928133_2118324114300076032_nWe begin our journey with a story of international love across the Iron Curtain. Our guest, Eva, grew up hopping between three very distinct cultures – Denmark, the USA, and Communist Czechoslovakia. A self-described novelty seeker and chameleon, Eva enjoys getting to know places. And yet – though she feels very at home in USA (and many European countries), it hasn’t always been easy building a connection with the Czech Republic. She’s not giving up though! Now that she finds herself raising her teenagers and running businesses here in Prague, we talk about what it means to be a third culture kid, to ‘connect’ to a place and a people, and about what lessons we can learn from chimpanzees (she majored in Anthropology!) about being accepted into a new group.

Listen here: http://thewayweconnect.buzzsprout.com/160260/1189082-wanderlust-adaptability-chimps-and-the-velvet-revolution-what-does-it-mean-to-connect-to-a-place

Mentioned resources:

Expats.cz – giving expats in Prague information about news, jobs, events, services etc

Learn.cz – Eva’s business – teaching English and business confidence to Czechs

Migrants less likely to be retraumatised when they achieve cultural competence: George, M. (2012). Migration traumatic experiences and refugee distress: Implications for social work practice. Clinical Social Work Journal40(4), 429-437 (PDF)

Also useful:

If you’re interested in the behaviour of chimps when adapting to new societies, have a look at this article: https://www.mpg.de/12125811/grooming-social-relationship 

How to make a new city feel like home: https://www.inc.com/jessica-stillman/9-ways-to-make-a-new-city-feel-like-home.html

I also recommend www.meetup.com to find new events and groups!

Episode 8: What does it mean to ‘fit in’ somewhere?

How do we fit in to new places? What does it mean to feel like you belong? And is it harder to feel that you don’t belong in your home town, compared to a completely new place?

Amelia has lived in many places, from Kansas to Prague, but the biggest adjustment came from moving to Namibia as a Peace Corps volunteer. In this episode, we discuss what it was like to stand out in a small Namibian village, whether she felt homesick, and how Amelia has felt about ‘fitting in’ in a variety of locations, from Kansas to Prague and everywhere in between.

One idea that came up in this episode was whether or not it’s harder to handle the feeling of not ‘fitting in’ to your own home town, as opposed to somewhere that you’ve moved to and where being an outsider isn’t so unexpected, anyway.

“One of the reasons I want to live abroad… is because there’s something more painful about not feeling like you belong [when it’s] in your own home” Amelia.

Amelia would like to apologise for using some Colonial names for places in Namibia, and hopes that they did not cause any offence.

Listen to the episode here: https://www.buzzsprout.com/160260/1037383-what-does-it-mean-to-fit-in-somewhere
Find out more about Namibia:

https://www.info-namibia.com/info/general-information 

https://www.worldatlas.com/articles/tribes-and-ethnic-groups-of-namibia.html

Find out more about the Peace Corps: https://www.peacecorps.gov/