Happiness and Joy

As a Kinesiologist a large part of my work with clients includes looking at the emotional aspects of the issue at hand.

Often the word to describe the emotion is very specific. Last week I was working with a lady who needed more “joy” in her life.  I had been testing “happiness”, which we had considered as the same, but “joy” definitely tested as the correct word.

There are subtle differences between the two feelings.

Happiness and joy are closely related and frequently occur simultaneously.  They both bring feelings of contentment, pleasure and satisfaction, but the reasons for these feelings are where differences lie.

Happiness is an outward expression of bliss and elation and comes from material things and earthly experiences, for example good food or company.  Whereas joy is a more inward experience of peace and contentment, from spiritual experiences like feeling connected to a god or people.  Joy requires an ongoing process of living a moral, more selfless lifestyle, caring for others and expressing gratitude on a regular basis.

Because happiness is based on outward circumstances, it is often more fleeting.  Whereas joyfulness takes longer to cultivate, it is a stronger, longer term state less influenced by life’s ups and downs.

It’s worth your time, effort and energy to cultivate more happiness and joy in your life.  There are health benefits, including; stronger immune systems, lower heart rate and blood pressure, fewer aches and pains and longer life spans.

Here are some simple hints to integrate more happiness and joy in your life. Read More…

The importance of touch

Rena Walker gives a kinesiology treatment to daughter Lucy

Sitting in a café last week and glancing at the occupants at surrounding tables, I was struck by the number of people looking at their phones rather than interacting with their fellow occupants.

It reminded me of an article I read observing behaviour of people at an airport.  It was written by Tiffany Field, a researcher who is considered a leading authority on touch and touch therapy with 40 years of experience in the field. She stated in the past she would have seen people hugging and napping on each other, but was surprised to see that people were now looking their phones instead of touching or speaking. This article predated the risk of infection from COVID-19.

There are numerous studies reporting the benefits of touch for physical and mental wellbeing.  It’s believed that when you’re touched, pressure receptors are stimulated which in turn increase the activity of the vagus nerve. The vagus nerve is responsible for a variety of internal organ functions, including; digestion, heart rate, breathing, cardiovascular activity and reflex actions like coughing, swallowing and sneezing. Read More…

Celebrate your wins

In the water at Casuarina Beach

Celebrating your wins is an important step on the journey to achieving your goals.

Pausing to congratulate yourself for following through on your new habit or goal buoys your energy and enthusiasm, and keeps you going.  Think how a sporting team is inspired by cheering from supporters.

Periodically taking time to notice how far you’ve come builds confidence. Reflect on your successes and mistakes, so you can apply lessons to new goals and challenges.

Celebrate with friends and colleagues, thank them for their help and support along the way – you may even inspire them to achieve their own goals.

A little self-promotion is good thing too. It shows you have confidence in yourself and other people may want to place their trust in you.

The more you celebrate, the more you have to celebrate!

A celebration can be as simple as a daily self-congratulation for taking action to achieve your goals or following through with new habits.  Then choose bigger rewards or celebrations for bigger achievements.

Celebrate each kilo lost, each fear faced, improvements in speed or efficiency and watch your commitment to achieving improve.

Are you dehydrated?

Dehydration occurs when your body loses more water than you take in, leaving your body without enough fluids to carry out its normal functions.

Dehydration is a particular risk for young children and older adults.  In young children it’s commonly caused by severe or prolonged vomiting or diarrhoea.

Older people naturally have lower levels of water in their system and some medical conditions and medications can deplete their fluids even more.

Living in the top end, all age groups can be susceptible especially as we start to sweat more in the increased heat and humidity of build-up and wet season.  If you drink caffeinated beverages, alcohol or exercise vigorously you are more at risk of dehydration.

Thirst is an obvious indication that you are dehydrated, here are some others that you may not be aware of. Read More…

It takes more than one thing to heal

8 Dimensions of health

People often think of healing only in terms of physical health but there are more aspects that should be considered!

Holistic health is linked to the choices and actions we take to bring together different dimensions to work in harmony: nurturing the spirit, engaging the mind as well as addressing physical aspects of good health. Importantly, it is also an awareness of the physical, social and cultural environments in which we live.

Eight dimensions of wellness should be considered when we strive to heal ourselves from injury or illness, neglecting one will eventually adversely affect another. Read More…

Multitasking? Stop it!

For a long time I considered myself an expert at multi-tasking.  I often would be working on 3 or more tasks at the same time, thinking I was being productive.  As a single mum and small business owner I figured multi-tasking the best way of getting everything done.  Wrong!

It made me constantly stressed and tired.  I made mistakes that I then beat myself up about, and, worst of all, I often over cooked or burnt dinner.

Then one day I read a list of “Zen things” and at the top of the list was “Do one thing at a time”.  I started putting this into practice and discovered that I was much more efficient and productive, made less mistakes and produced better quality results (and meals).  Admittedly, it took me a while to develop this new habit and even now I sometimes have to remind myself to stay focused, but it has been well worth the effort.

I did some research to find if other people had similar results and here’s what I found…. Read More…

Maintaining Mobility

Swimming at Darwin Waterfront – Rena Walker in the lagoon

Staying active is one of the most important tools for leading a long, healthy life, however, when pain strikes, it becomes challenging to maintain your activity.  Injury and pain often occurs because of a lack of mobility and flexibility.

When I work with my clients I define flexibility as the ability of a muscle to be lengthened and mobility as the ability to move through your full range of motion efficiently and comfortably.

In this context true mobility requires a combination of flexibility, balance, coordination, control and strength.  Muscles and tissues need to lengthen, as well as work together to activate and relax in a coordinated way to allow smooth, controlled movement throughout the full range.  This requires the neuromuscular system (the communication system between the brain and muscles) to be working effectively. Read More…

From struggle to ease with Kinesiology

Whether you are struggling with a lack of energy, confidence, motivation or persistent pain and discomfort, Kinesiology can help you live your life with more ease.

As I was looking through my records to find the reasons clients come for treatments with me, I discovered that the basic theme is to get help with overcoming problems that prevent you living your best life.  Here are just a few samples:


  • Men and women who want to enjoy movement and exercise without persistent pain and discomfort.
  • People looking for enough energy to power through their workday and still have some energy left to enjoy a pleasant evening with their family and friends.
  • Adults and children trying to build their confidence to develop and demonstrate their true value, skills and abilities in all aspects of their life.
  • People who realise it’s time to release their fears, unleash their potential and start living the life full of love and adventure they crave.
  • Grandparents who want the simple pleasure of getting on the floor to play with grandchildren then get up again with ease.

Read More…

5 Tips to take control of your chocolate cravings


Everywhere you look in the weeks leading up to Easter there’s chocolate!  It gets harder and harder to control your cravings, with foil covered eggs and bunnies calling out to you.  Seriously, it feels like the shops are out to undermine your latest commitment to eat healthier, avoid sugar and hopefully drop a kilo or two.

The good news is that there ARE health benefits to consuming chocolate, but moderation is the key.  Don’t deny yourself completely and then blow your diet by bingeing when your willpower finally gives in.  Try these tips to help you make healthier choices and enjoy chocolate in moderation. Read More…

Adapting to change

If 2020 was the year of cancelled plans and forced change, what does 2021 hold for us?

The risk of infection and prospect of lockdowns and border closures means uncertainty is our constant companion, at least for now.

We are not in total control of anything.  But being resilient and adaptable are qualities that have helped humans survive for centuries; these are the same qualities we need to navigate the changes forced on us over the past year.

Two maxims I use to view change in a more positive light are:  “Whatever happens I’ll be ok” and “What if this is the best thing that could have happened?” Read More…

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