Wednesday, 16 April 2014

The Simplest Way To Relax

The Simplest Way To Relax

Most relaxation techniques combine breathing more deeply with relaxing your muscles.

Don't worry if you find it difficult to relax at first. It's a skill that needs to be learned and it will come with practice. Practise for three to five minutes, two to three times a day! You can use this technique whenever you feel the need to calm down!

Relaxed breathing

Practise deep breathing at a regular time and in a quiet place where you won’t be disturbed. Loosen or remove any tight clothes and make yourself comfortable! If you can, sit in a comfortable chair which supports your head or lie on the floor or bed. Place your arms on the chair arms, or flat on the floor or bed, a little bit away from the side of your body with the palms up. If you’re lying down, stretch out your legs, keeping them hip-width apart or slightly wider. If you’re sitting in a chair, don’t cross your legs.

Good relaxation always starts with focusing on your breathing. The way to do it is to breathe in and out slowly and in a regular rhythm as this will help you to calm down.

·         Breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth slowly.
·         Fill up the whole of your lungs with air, without forcing.
·         Imagine you're filling up a bottle, so that your lungs fill from the bottom.
·         Breathe in slowly and regularly counting from one to five (don’t worry if you can’t reach five at first).
·         Then let the breath escape slowly, counting from one to five.
·         Keep doing this until you feel calm.
·         Breathe without pausing or holding your breath.

While you are doing this concentrate completely on your breathing – let the thought of your breath fill you heart and mind completely!

You will be surprised by the power of this very simple technique which you can use any time and  in more or less any place.  Please try it.

Tuesday, 15 April 2014

If you have to fight for something you have no reason to give up

If you have to fight for something you have no reason to give up. 

Here is another inspirational post from contributor, Stephanie Carfrae. She is a Creative Writing Graduate; you can find her own blog at and I think you will be inspired by Steph's videos on YouTube at

When the referee blows the full time whistle you have my permission to give up. 

My point is no one has a referee with a whistle to blow full time in this life. Everyone has highs, everyone has lows. Who are you to think your lows are worse than anyone else’s? 

Of course good things come to an end, and they have to so you can learn to appreciate them. The good times account for memories: sometimes that’s the best part of being alive because you know that things can only get better. 

Of course there will be moments of heart ache and you will go through hard times, but just hold onto the belief that if the past good times have been that good the hard times will get better. Though at times, when fighting for something, you cannot see the light at the end of the tunnel you just have to keep going because it will be out there. Somewhere.

You can’t change the events that go on in someone else’s life. Even though you might want to, particularly when you care so much about someone you just want their pain so that they don’t have to face it. But life doesn't work that way. While you can always be relied upon for moral support, oftentimes there is nothing you can do when life plays out such catastrophes. And that is painful.

Just know that you have the biggest heart and someday that will be noticed, if it hasn't already. 

Sometimes there’s nothing you can do. It is hard, but that’s the way life is. 

For years I blamed myself for an episode that happened when I was eleven. I kept thinking if I hadn't done things in the way I did, the bad events that occurred may not have happened.

Just as with my previous point, you can’t control other people’s reactions. Just because it’s not the way you would react, doesn't mean it’s wrong. People are different. Something that’s natural for you may not be for someone else. 

You are not in charge of everyone. The only person you are accountable for is YOU. People who rely on you (kids/friends etc.) are individuals themselves and need the chance to be able to make mistakes so that they can set them right. Not you.

Imagine if you were wrapped in cotton wool all your life, without being able to make a single mistake or live. 

Mistakes are a part of living, and even the most composed, self-assured person has made a mistake in their past. Just because they’re not making them now, doesn't mean they haven’t. 

It might takes a lot of tries to get to where you want to in life, but if you focus on ‘how to do it better next time’ it’s so much less time-consuming and much more positive than thinking about the amount of times you failed. 

Stephanie Carfrae is a regular contributor. She is a Creative Writing Graduate; you can find her own blog at and I think you will be inspired by Steph's videos on YouTube at 

Friday, 11 April 2014

Bánh bột lọc - Vietnamese clear shrimp & pork dumpling

Bánh bột lọc - Vietnamese clear shrimp & pork dumpling

I'm eating Vietnamese food tonight so I thought it was time for this. Plus the accompanying song made me feel happy.

With thanks to

Full recipe in English and Vietnamese at
400gr tapioca starch
200gr shrimp
For the dough
400g (14 oz) tapioca starch
250ml water (1 cup) boiling hot water
For the filling
200g (7 oz) shrimps, deveined and diced
200g (7 oz) pork belly, diced
1 tsp minced shallot
1 tsp minced garlic
Salt & pepper
½ tsp paprika powder
2 tsp vegetable oil
1 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp fish sauce
For garnish
100g spring onion, chopped
¼ cup vegetable oil
Cilanto and fresh red chili, choppped
Vietnamese dipping fish sauce "nuoc cham"

More Vietnamese BANH recipes:

Items in my kitchen and pantry

Join the Helen at

Soundtrack by Le Cat Trong Ly - "It's so great to be a girl"

Tuesday, 8 April 2014

Explore A Little Magic for Inspiration - Pegasus

Explore A Little  Magic for Inspiration - Pegasus

The symbol of Pegasus gives you inspiration, quick and agile wisdom and inspires your ability to fly over any situation.

He can be a helper with spiritual explorations and a protector during your spiritual travels.

He will help you work to change evil into good.

Pegasus, though gentle, is very strong and in Greek mythology carried of Zeus' thunderbolt.

He is the horse of the Muses, in the service of poets and I hope you are privileged to ride on his back to find your inspiration!

Monday, 7 April 2014

Other People And Their Expectations

Other People And Their Expectations

Here is another inspirational post from contributor, Stephanie Carfrae. She is a Creative Writing Graduate; you can find her own blog at and I think you will be inspired by Steph's videos on YouTube at

You shouldn’t not do something just because it’s been marred by other people. They don’t know what you’ve been through and they don’t know where you’re going.

Other people’s opinions are rated highly. Why? We don’t know them. We don’t know their story. They’ll only be a passing stranger in your story; don’t let them have the power of deciding what you do. 

Other people are so over-preoccupied with their own issues that they don’t notice your faults as much as you think they do. As a human race, we are selfish in that way.

So don’t ever be too hard on yourself. 

Most of the time you’ll find that you, yourself are applying the pressure on yourself. Everybody messes up. And in a tense situation it may provide a light moment – as long as you can laugh at yourself. If you can it will warm people to you. It’s a difficult thing to do you just have to let go.

Being able to make a mistake and see the funny side is good for you as well as other people. They will feel immediately at ease with you and surely that’s what you want?

Expectations are a killer. 

Having expectations of anyone else's actions or responses is dangerous. You can have high expectations of yourself but please remember not to beat yourself up if you don't meet them!

We are all pioneers who learn life on the job. And no matter how old you are, you are still learning. New situations come up all the time and though you may have been through similar in the past you have never been through this. And that’s Okay. People may have been through similar themselves but they can only provide suggestions as to how you handle it. They are not living your life. 

Hopefully you will have people who support your decisions but if you don’t, I know it’s very hard but keep holding on. There will be a silver lining on a cloud somewhere.

Other people’s expectations of us drain us. You can only be you. 

Stephanie Carfrae is a regular contributor. She is a Creative Writing Graduate; you can find her own blog at and I think you will be inspired by Steph's videos on YouTube at