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  • Sunday LIVING INTO THE FUTURE

    Ottawa River Sunset

    Over the summer, a technique I learned about in a course was how to live into your future. 

    We started with setting a date we want to accomplish something, and then you reverse engineer what you hope to accomplish by that date backwards until you reach today’s date. 

    For example, my friend Wants an organic orchard on his land not too far for from here. He asked me how can he accomplish this using this method?  I gave him these steps to follow.

    1. Create your team.  His team is a horticulturist, seed supplier, and a friend who has an orchard near Niagara Falls. He needs at least six members on his team.
    2. Meet with the team assign tasks and a system for measuring accountability.
    3. Map what needs to be done each week until you reached the specific date of completion. 
    4. Visualize walking through the orchard look at the details how does the soil underneath your shoes feel is there a scent on the trees. I always have problems with this type of exercise because I have aphantasia, which means I can’t visualize images in my mind, but I can experience the feeling I want.  Our brain does not know what is real or imagined, what feeling does a walk through your orchard give you I asked him?
  • Inner Peace is in You

    Discover Inner Peace 2022 March 13

    It was after reading a friend’s Facebook page post it prompted me to write this blog post. Paul is a mediator and his words helped me focus on this piece. Thank you for your wisdom, Paul.

    My garden

    Inner peace comes from a relationship that is based on acceptance, intimacy, and curiosity. Like a garden we need to weed out what does not serve us, and cultivate beauty, resilience,and strength. Sometimes this requires a change in perspective.

    The late Zen Master, Thich Hanh Often wrote that peace should not be possessed, it should be a catalyst to help others suffering to discover peace.

    As a long time, meditator, I am comfortable exploring my feelings in meditation.  To know yourself more fully, explore with wonder each layer of who you are. My meditation practice became a lifeline after a brain injury a few years ago.

    In 2018, I was diagnosed with left side neglect ((ischaemic right brain stroke during surgery, which meant at first , my brain could not recognize objects on my left side. I approached my brain injury with curiosity.

    This injury led me to change my diet and empowered me to respond to a new version of who I am. I spent many hours researching the brain, reading, and listening to podcasts on neurology.

    My first thought was not why me, but how interesting is it that our brain works like this. I was really intrigued. It was not easy but I persevered, and made peace with what happened by understanding what happened in my brain. One can always reconcile a negative event with a positive perspective. It helps the process to have the right question or statements of inquiry that will lead you to peace.

    There is no right or wrong way of discovery. You’ll know it when it happens. I have found the key to peace is acceptance. Paul added the following steps, It is not verbatim. Meditate on these statements; to create a new perspective.

    • I create my reality (trust). This perspective becomes available once we are aware of cause and effect.
    • I am choosing what is happening (trust). Seeing ourselves as being endlessly creative.
    • I welcome what is here (accepting our current experience).
    • Appreciating physical sensations (intimacy). Appreciating the physical sensations in our body right now invigorates and increases the intensity of what we are experiencing. Think about eating your favorite food. When we slow down and taste each bite we feel more.
    • I am the entirety of what I am experiencing (intimacy). What I am experiencing is creating the sense of me.
    •  Viewing life as being connect to all. (Cause and effect.,we are all connected) A flower does not exist without rain,sun and wind.
    • I don’t know what I’m experiencing (Curiosity). Letting go of all ideas and labels about what it is we are experiencing. Looking at life as if we were a newborn baby seeing things for the first time. (wonder)
    • I don’t know what I am. Creates space for possibilities.
    • I experience a sense of excitement about what is about to happen next. Discovery of endless possibilities.

    Discovering your way to a peace is not easy, we all have our own pain, sorrows, and fears. Give yourself time and space to embrace and recognize how you’re suffering. Be compassionate and gentle when,Starting an inquiry to self. However, remember there’s no right or wrong way to do this.

    My meditation space/sauna
  • Luezan Tue called Our Name

    My family were environmentalists well before the term became popularized.

    We are Denesuline people, from Northern Saskatchewan. We are strong, proud. Stewards, of Mother Earth. We take this responsibility seriously.

    In the 70’s our dad answered the call of the land, and took his older children, to our traditional hunting lands. They hadn’t been back there for over 40 Decades until last summer of 2021. This is my dad’s legacy.

    He answered the calling of the traditional lands, Luezan Tue, and inspired four generations to return to Djeskelni. He passed his baton to the next generation. He reaffirmed our sacred connection to the land. Everyone he took back to the land were transformed and carries the calling deep within their spirit.

    In August, 2021, a small group of about of 17 family members went back to our land, organized by my nephew, Donald Deranger, who had gone there with Baba in the 1970s. They went to spread my late brother Patrick’s ashes around the lake to fulfill his last wish.It is clear to me that Patrick’s death facilitated a renewed interest back to our traditional land. The family answered the calling to return to the land. It is difficult to deny how powerful this spiritual calling is.

    FAMILY MISSION

    1. Increase the quality of life for seven generations by building upon our rich Denesuline traditional heritage based on being stewards of the land, lending a helping hand, and create business ventures to generate profits and financial independence. Our family embodies Dene cultural tradition the pillars of which is respect, and to honour the teachings of our ancestors.

    My family, like most Indigenous families, is complicated, affected by intergenerational trauma of colonialism, and residential school.

    We have sometimes temporarily lost sight of family, our connection to each other and the spirit of our traditional lands. We are easily triggered and often will cut off one another from our life.

    That said, I adore my Dene family, dysfunctions and all.

    I read somewhere when you change the beginning of your story it changes the end of the story.

    After I wrote this blog piece I went back and changed the beginning of our story.

    I remain hopeful for the next seven generations. That they will continue to answer the call of our traditional lands. I see renewed interest in some of my nephews and nieces. The calling is strong in them, and I am hopeful.

    3 generations, my nephew Donald Deranger, his son, and grandchild.
    Sand dunes on our traditional lands
    Older sisters preparing wild meat from our land for the feast.
    Brother-in-law John Mercredi (not at the camp) when you listen closely to Dene drum you hear the heartbeat of the land.

    Acknowledgment

    My brother, Roger for keeping traditional prophecies of the Denesuline alive.

    My nephew Donald Deranger for holding the baton for the next generations, and last, but so important, my late brother Patrick, a sacred pipe holder for passing the baton to his daughter when he gave her the sacred responsibility and honour of spreading his ashes on our traditional land.

    Patrick Deranger
  • 2022 striding into the new year with eyes wide open

    My intention in 2022 is not about losing weight although I could stand to lose a few pounds, it is not about exercising more. I could do more of that too. 

    My intention, my goal for 2022 is to not live small, to show up in life because  my actions matter and the people in my life deserve to see the very best version of myself, Which is to show up in service to indigenous peoples struggling with addressing their trauma.

    The next Being a Leader course starts in January 2022. If  your interested in creating the best life for yourself connect with  Tanyss Munro tanyssmunro@gmail.com     2022 I will continue my journey of growth and transformation,  particularly as it pertains to my foundation  Seventh Generation Indigenous  Foundation and Training. (G.I.F.T) I’m really excited To be part of a group of extraordinary humans on the foundation.  Our vision has capabilities to be a game changer in the delivery of services to indigenous communities across Alberta.

    First, I am excited to confirm renowned physician and expert on trauma Dr. Gabor Mate has agreed to support GIFT foundation in the capacity as advisor to our curriculum writers. secondly, we start the new year by inviting additional board members who hold expertise in the areas of psychology, sociology,, law, and curriculum development.

    My late dad, Isidore and older brother Fred Deranger
  • January 1, 2022!

    Living on the river shore is captivating, every day there is something phenomenal happening on the river, the neighbors made a ice rink over the weekend.

  • Family dynamics is difficult to navigate at times. Ditch the Negative Talk.

    building in Fort Chip is a success
    Fort Chipewyan the Spirit is Alive
  • Love Perspective

    April giving her grandma a message #love,#compassion

    January 05 What is LOVE? (Hint a perspective)  

    Canadian born rapper spoken word artist a poet and now an international bestselling author who writes about love and goes by Humble The Poet. this is from his new book How to be Love

    • Love Is always there
    • There are no flaw that we have which prevents someone from loving us
    •  Show up in service for others
    • Accept your body without judgement get naked look at yourself and list 5 things you love about your body, say it out loud, tell others. I love how strong my arms are for example, or my eyes sparkle and are beautiful
    • Honor yourself with gratitude
    • Dance with yourself daily get in tune with your body move with the music
    • Practice doing something outside your comfortable zone If you’re afraid of heights go for a hike. If you fear public speaking, join toastmasters.
    • Power is given to who you blame for your situation. Choose not to be a victim. Be accountable and responsibility for your situation, even if it is only 1% your fault, give the power to you.
    • Reframe your perspective I am not my challenges. A partial stroke left me with long term deficits and it has not stopped me from starting a charitable foundation (seventhgift.ca) or producing and hosting a podcast, Empatic Witness, when there are literally thousand in existence.
    • Be authentic and vulnerable
    • Meditate take out am I doing it right or wrong? just be still
    • Feel what you’re feeling. If you’re sad observe what you’re experiencing without judgement, be curious about that feeling.
    • Identify that one positive thing in the negativity around you
    •  
    Babies have all they need to be Love we can learn from them
  • December 31, 2022 Leaning into Gratitude

    We forgot to put the umbrella down before the high winds now we wait until Spring to remove it.!

    New Year’s resolutions: we love making them, right? We look forward to improving ourselves in some manner.  Maybe it is to lose weight or find love. Or we just want to be a better version of who we were in 2022.

    We believe by setting a New Year’s resolution we will get there. Does that work for you?  Truthfully, it hasn’t worked for me. That said, each December 31st gives a space to hope for love and prosperity and a new beginning.

    Last year, I did something different and created a gratitude jar. I didn’t assign myself any rules; I decided that only that when I felt gratitude, I would write it down on a sticky note and put it in the jar.  I wanted to look at things that pulled me into gratitude instead of things that didn’t work out in 2022.

    My first note of the year was in June “I talked to my nephew Mike D, and I felt we had pushed the reset button on our relationship.”  Maybe it was just me because I got the feeling, he didn’t completely trust me, yet.  I wrote “I am so grateful to have Mike in my life and offered him a position on Seventh Generation indigenous Foundation and Training (GIFT) seventhgift.ca board of Directors because of his involvement with youth. GIFT’s goal is to break the cycle of addictions in Indigenous communities within 3 generation. I thought he would like to be part of that movement. He turned down my invitation. We haven’t spoken since June.  I think highly of him, he is a thoughtful successful businessman giving back by guiding and mentoring Indigenous youth though his company. I won’t stop hoping to regain his trust.  

    My intention for 2023 is to be open to all who are interested in having a relationship, even if we’ve had disagreements in the past.  It is a new year and time to let the old year go.

    Relationships came up continually in my gratitude jar for 2022.  I reached out to a few people with a desire to create a better relationship with them.

    It didn’t surprise me that in the months of May, June, September, and November, I expressed gratitude for my immediate family, and how much they supported me. I never take that for granted.  In November, I expressed gratitude for my older sister, Mary and her husband, Ron for thinking of us on our 30th anniversary. I noted gratitude for my siblings: Jimmy, for daily texts, Rose for frequently phoning to check up on how I was doing, Mary for calling and giving me, family, health updates and Annie for telling me she thinks of her baby sister often. We always share laughter on these calls. And hubby for filling my kettle to make it easier for my morning tea, I am filled with gratitude when I think about all the little things he does for me, such as surprise me with Starbucks Chai tea, matcha tea, and cleaning up after dinner loading the dishwasher.  Not to mention working hard to support the family.

    I gave gratitude to Seventh Generation indigenous Foundation and Training (GIFT) which I founded for being my compass and giving me space for mental and spiritual growth.  The GIFT Foundation also was a conduit to connecting me with my cousin and other family members as we developed our legacy course. Three out of nine board members are family.

    My Empathetic Witness Podcast also expanded prominently throughout the year in my gratitude jar as I noted gratitude for guests who appeared on my podcast who gave their time and shared their knowledge continuing the conversation on Indigenous traditions, colonialism, trauma, mental health, diet, and addictions. I especially acknowledged family members who are on my podcast team, my granddaughter who is the editor and graphics designer, my daughter who is the researcher. My cousin, Leonard who gave permission to use his music, my brother Roger for his artwork. I am committed to recording 52 interviews in 2023 with phenomenal indigenous people. You won’t want to miss a single episode. Empathic Witness on Spotify.

    My journey in 2023 will be guided by my pursuit of Awe. (happiness) 

    I bought four 100 Day Gong & Gratitude Journals for 2023 after reading Pedram Shojai, former Taoist monk and now physician of Chinese medicine. My fountain pens are cleaned and ready.   

    Gong is a Chinese term referring to a skill cultivated through daily practice. I simply commit to perform a certain action that will improve my wellness for 100 days in a row. If I miss a day, I must start over at day one. Before I start the journal, I need to ask myself what the one thing I time had to do that would bring me joy.  I will use the Gong calendar to mark my progress by crossing out the box each day in my journal. I will reflect on the last 24 hours and write three things I am grateful for and why. I will use the journal to record the most meaningful experience I had in the previous day. Unlike the gratitude jar I will have everything contained in a journal which at the end of the year will be easier to read and see my progress. 

    May 2023 bring you much happiness, good health, and memorable adventures. You are the hero in your own journey. Happy New Year! 

    Lane to the house!
  • Awestruck!  Is the Fast Track to Happiness and Meaning- (Dacher Keltner)

    Douglas Cardinal, architect of the Museum of Civilization in Ottawa Canada and Walter Janvier, mural painting on the ceiling of the museum are my favorite Indigenous artist who inspire awe with their work!

    As an Indigenous person I am gifted vibrant oral stories passed down for generations and our traditional ecological knowledge. We are intrinsically part of ecosystems and connected to, animals, people, and nature.

    Seeing sunrise and the sunset brings awe. Walking in nature brings awe. Why not listen to music while walking in nature? Music and nature equal HAPPINESS.

    What does it mean to be awestruck? Do you actively cultivate awe in your life?

       Dacher Keltner A professor of psychology at the University of California, Berkeley. His book is AWE: The New Science of Everyday Wonder and how it can transform your life. The following is from his new book.

     He makes a bold statement at the beginning of his book; Awe is an emotion. He recommend a look at the map of emotional intelligence, think about the images that make us feel. They tend to be astounding and trippy. Tall trees, storm clouds the images in part that makes us feel beauty. Pretty faces Renoir like scenes in paintings they’re different. The Physiology of the vagus nerve is understanding the body and neurophysiology. When we are awestruck, there is a physical reaction.

    The Physiology of the emotion people tell us what it’s like to feel awe they would say I was at this festival of Guadalupe in Mexico City, or I saw the Grand Canyon and it blew my mind.

    This emerged in mammalian, in evolution to help us connect and be open to other people and it’s correlated with feeling open to others empathy kindness and in studies when we see incredible imagery of nature people have elevated vagal tone and that’s really good news for how you function in the world.  

    The tears are coming out of the lacrimal gland behind your cornea it’s again part of  social kindness-oriented regions of your nervous system the parasympathetic branch and you tear up when we see young people perform on stage, or you’re walking through the streets of the city and see somebody help another stranger we tear up at these moments of people being communal and kind and the goosebumps are amazing. The rushes of goosebumps up the back of your neck and your arms when you’re emotionally touched, or in other words awestruck.

    1. Warm sensation in the chest- the vagus nerve is the largest bundle of nerves in the mammalian nervous system really complicated starts at the top of your spinal cord wanders through your chest influences breathing, and heart rate.
    2. Tearing up
    3. Goosebumps those are little muscles around your hair follicles they contract, and they tend to signal in the mammalian world like it’s time to be together and a face mystery together there a sign of togetherness and leaning into each other.

    I ask the question for each of us when we feel these deep experiences How do we interpret it?   For some people it’s about divinity and it’s God it’s I have a soul.

    I personally I like Wilson, the evolutionary biologist he’s like isn’t it incredible that evolution working for billions of years billions of adaptations natural selection produce nature and ecosystems that can appreciate.  Niagara Falls, Sand Dunes, it blows my mind I feel it’s a very personal and complicated question but one reflecting on.

    1. Mysterious connect to one another gives us purpose and meaning
    2. Moral Beauty, courage kindness,
    3. Nature
    4. Music – synchronise- brains Concerts draw us together as we listen to music.
    5. Visual Design, pottery, patterns give us Awe
    6. Stories of awe must be self-discovered
    7. Stories of life and death, mystical discovery instil awe.
    • Epiphanies

  • A CHRISTMAS A TIME for REFLECTION and CONNECTIONS 

    A human’s best pal _ no ego no problem! Don’t leave friends out in the cold

     We must work on our relationships to experience freedom. There is no relationship that can’t be restored with effort and when we give up our ego, and meet each other soul to soul soul.

    Think about that difficult phone call you made to someone you have had a breakdown in your relationship with and how it positively impacted your relationship.    I have initiated number of these calls in the past I restored my relationship with an older brother months before his passing his last text to me was thank you baby sister.  It meant a lot to read his text. 

    When I called, my friend I was nervous and afraid and she was incredibly generous, and authentic. We had a powerful conversation.  I’ve since discovered our time together is limited.  Every day since I appreciate her more each day.

    I wish for you to experience this Christmas a new possibility in your relationships. It might be with your brother, a sister, cousin, nephew, niece, boss, partner, grandchildren or aunt.

      Making a difficult choice came with the best reward I could wish. But I had to lean into my bravery to do realize the reward. That meant I had to risk rejection.  And it was worth it.  We both felt the conversation although difficult, restored balance in our relationship.

    That said, sometimes the process must be repeated many times. Don’t give up.  

    People hold on to grudges and choose this mountain to die on, “I am Right”.  Three words so powerful it kills relationships. To be right people will stop all communication, even in the face of the other party trying to reach out, sometimes, regretfully.  I’ve been suborn holding a on to a grudge, but I’ve also been the other party reaching out to re-establish a connection.  

    Below, I write what people might say about one another when there is a breakdown in their relationship.  

    To that point, I am aware of things have been said about me behind my back too.  I know that I have hurt people with my words and actions.  The impact of my actions are that I lose the respect and love of people closest to me. The impact on them is they believe I am untrustworthy, and fake. Because of my actions it may make it difficult for them to trust other people in my family.  I am willing to rebuild their trust in me if they allow me the privilege.

    Three people I regret hurting and lost their respect and love are a niece a nephew, and a very close friend.  I mentioned I restored my friendship with my friend above. With my nephew and niece, it is still a work in progress. I am waiting for a call back from both.  I will never stop trying to recreate what we once had with them, I feel their loss in my life deeply.

    look honestly at the following points and see if you recognize if you said this about someone. Change them to a positive statement towards the person you are having a challenging relationship with. And I dare you to call them, begin with I saw you as___________________________

    But I come to discovered   you are__________________________

    1. He/She /Them/They don’t notice when they hurt people with their actions
    2. 2.He/She/ Them/They think they’re better than everyone
    3. 3.He/She /Them/They are greedy
    4. 5.He/She /Them/They can’t be trusted
    5. 7.He/She /Them/ use bad medicine to get what they wanted
    6. He/She /Them/They interfere in my life uninvited
    7. He/She /Them/They I can’t do anything right in their eyes
    8. 11. He/She /Them/They are untrustworthy
    9. 12. He/She /Them/They gossip and spread lies
    10. He/She /Them/They have no compassion or empathy
    11. I don’ want them in my life because ___________________________

    People stubbornly get more entrenched in their behavior because they feel justified, in being right.   It must look like there are no new possibilities in that relationship and they decide the effort is too much to restore their relationship. 

    Fortunately, I discovered there is always a possibility for a renewed relationship when you lean into being brave and are willing to change your perspective.

    The question becomes is it necessary to forgive someone to reset your relationship? Discover for yourself after you do the exercise.  

    I challenge you to make 2023 a year where you clean up your relationships with the people you have the most difficulty with. Follow the steps.

    1. Recognize the story you are telling about the person is not serving you.
    2.  Rewrite all the negative statements you say about that person with positive statements, be willing to let go of the hurt and being right.
    3. Call That person if they don’t pick upkeep trying. 
    4.  Ask How is your behavior preventing you from having allies

    Ask yourself what is stopping you from initiating contact with that person? Maybe that person is me?  I am willing to restore our relationship so what is holding you back from reaching out to me?

  • A DOGHEAD CHRISTMAS

    My Mom and me a couple of years before she passed away.

     Christmas Deranger style, Back in the day! 

    I have fond memories of my childhood Christmases at home after we were allowed home for Christmas from residential school. When I first was put into, residential school I remember receiving a gift and attending Midnight mass in the mission.   But my happiest memory is when we went home for Christmas.  

    Doghead Christmas was noisy chaotic, and included the customary walk to church for midnight mass.   I don’t know how they managed to get us into fresh washed and ironed clothes and to church on time.  Especially, my brothers who had so much energy and spunk even on the walk to the church, they could not contain their excitement.

    I noticed when the moon was bright there was sparkles on the snow like tiny diamonds, I remember a crunchy sound as our boots broke though the thin layer of ice on the snow on our way to midnight mass.  The Northern Lights would make an appearance and created a brilliant display of colorful dancing lights, we were enchanted no matter how many times we saw them.

    Magic was everywhere like glitter. We, my parents and a dozen young children lived in a small house without electricity or plumbing. That means no Christmas lights, but the coal oil lantern was bright enough.  We used ordinary plates for Christmas dinner.  We children received exactly one gift for Christmas each.  I don’t mention that to get sympathy, but to explain we were happy despite it.

    I Am grateful for my sister Dora and older brother Peter who along with mom and dad did their best to create a magical Christmas for all of us kids.  

    At Christmas our house was magical, Thanks to the cleaning, cooking, and decorating of the tree, they put garland on the ceiling and doorways as the small radio played Christmas carols. We didn’t have cloth tablecloths, or curtains. Instead, we replaced the old plastic curtains and tablecloth with a new festive Christmas theme.

    After midnight mass we ate P & J sandwiches, tiny oranges, and some hard Christmas candy, and we opened our present before going to sleep satisfied and happy. These rituals created a symbiotic flow in our home filled with anticipation and wonder. We had a stress-free Christmas, as far as we were concerned as children, we never noticed any tension between the adults.  On Christmas day community members came to visited bringing food and treats for us kids.

    As an adult, Christmas magic dimed, but it didn’t disappear entirely. It stirred within me when I had children and recreated as best as we could the magic of my childhood.  I realized that my nostalgia was for the chaos and boisterous children excited about Christmas. Like in Doghead.

    When we believe in Christmas, we, will notice that special magic in the air. And as children how we allow our mind to explore without being encumbered by the expectations of others’. Have your children experience a Christmas they will carry in their heart for a lifetime.

    Merry Christmas to you and Yours

  • My name is Authenticity     

    Dr. Betty Bastien Blackfoot Elder Extraordinaire

    Years ago, my social worker friend and I drove to a First Nations community in Alberta. Along the way she shared with me stories, the loss of her husband when she was in her twenties, her relationship with her mom. She told her stories like it was possible for me to experience. I was touched, moved, and inspired by her words and bravery.

     I decided to enroll in leadership courses, not just any type of leadership course but with Landmark Education because of its transformational curriculum.  I continued my quest for self-improvement the years since that drive and it serves me well. 

      In Man Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankel. He says we must answer the question who are we being?  The answer gives us purpose, particularly if it is in service to others.  If you live into bravery by your action even in the face of fear at personal cost, you create a new possibility for yourself.

     Believe in a new possible future by letting go of what is not working in your life and reach for possibilities you never thought possible. 

    Why do I say my name is authenticity? it is because every day I lean into being authentic. And, if I notice I am not authentic, I asked the question what is stopping me in this moment?   Doing so I create a space for a new possibility of being.

    Beginning today what is your name? Who are you being? 

    • Brave
    • Integrity
    • Authentic
    • Leader
    • Compassionate
    • Explorer
    • Lover
    • Teacher
    • Healer
    • Hero
  • HAPPINESS is WITHIN YOU

    Me, not sure what made me laugh but I love this pix.

     I wish you happiness!  Elbert Hubbard, a well-known American writer, and philosopher, said “Happiness is a habit – cultivate it.”

    This means you have control over your happiness. You can train yourself to be happy. The most important thing to understand is happiness like, a spark can ignite into something big within you. Don’t wait for something special to be happy. Here is how you can be happy without trying. 

    • Happiness is contagious, be around happy people call someone who makes you laugh.
    • Connecting with a friend will make you happier, but you must be 100% present and listen to what they say.  
    • Go outdoors, you won’t “try” to be happy you will BE happier.
    •  Floral scents and fresh flowers will brighten your mood.
    • Aim for specific goals – Consciously take steps to make yourself happy 15 minutes at a time. Make yourself a nice cup of tea or coffee and reflect on your blessings while you sip it.
    • Make the mundane exciting, connect it with something you regularly do. For instance, say “I will listen to my favorite songs and dance with abandonment for 20 minutes after arriving home from work while doing chores.
    • Make repetition fun – Relate your actions with things you love. Combine your desire to be happy and your love for certain things. Listening to your favorite song while you clean is good. Reading while you soak luxuriously in a bathtub.
    • Look for the appropriate social support – We are influenced by what we consume. Music, tv, or podcast   and reading. These can inspire you. Which is why I listen to happiness podcasts.  One of the meditation apps I use is called 10% happier. 
    • No matter what occurs in the day find something good about it.  Reduce your complaints 10% each day.
    • Finally do something for someone to make them happier.   
  • One Word -Senses

    December 8, Beginning another spin around the sun!  I am blessed and grateful for gifts received, yesterday.  I appreciated all my gifts with my senses to savor the moment.

    • Sight – received a couple of beautiful flower arrangements.
    • Scent -the bouquet of roses we’re fragrant and reminded me of summer
    • Sound – talk on the phone with a couple of family members who wished me a Happy Birthday, it’s music to my ears.  And received beautiful headphones. I when I opened it, I said Oh no, I might get killed and not know it is going to happen.  lol but a few minutes later, after installing the software into my phone, I said, this is amazing! Normally I don’t listen to noise cancelling headphones because I want to be able to hear the ambient sounds if someone comes to the door or walks up behind me. But these headphones allow you to hear ambient sound and I don’t need to be worried while listening to podcast or whatever.
    • Taste – the chocolate cake was moist and so delicious
    • Playful fun, and laughter – I received a couple of games for the switch and had so much fun last night playing these new games with Andrew.
    • Touch- I have something coming in today from my girls in Hawaii, and I can’t wait to open it.
  • Building A bridge in Our Everyday Dialogue Is Part of Truth and Reconciliation

    My dad, Isidore Deranger and older brother, Fred Deranger

    I started Empathic Witness podcast in October 2020. It has over a thousand subscribers.  I admit this is minor, but it is steadily building, and listeners are returning to hear new episodes.   By the end of 2022, more amazing Indigenous peoples from across Canada whose words inspire everyday Canadians can be heard on this podcast.

    My guests include professors, Chiefs, a clinical psychologist, Indigenous people in the health and wellness domain, lawyers, cultural Indigenous language keepers, and cultural knowledge keepers.

    When the Honourable Mary Simon was appointed the first Indigenous Governor General in Canada’s history last year, the Honorable Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, said we need people to build bridges. I agree, it is important to build bridges between Indigenous peoples and the rest of Canada. Each of us has a part in this, no matter how big or small. 

    The Empathetic Witness Podcast is doing its part in building bridges during this historic time of Truth and Reconciliation.  We are finding a way to build communication bridges in our everyday dialogue so we can give dignity and respect to all people.  Let’s walk together and learn how to address one another respectfully.  

    As an Indigenous woman and a survivor of the Holy Angels’ Residential School in Fort Chipewyan, Alberta, it gives me immense pride to invite Indigenous people across Canada as my guests.   My podcast is not political; it is educational and healing.

     The format is designed as an intimate salon conversation into which you are invited to eavesdrop. Episodes are an hour in length. in 2023 we will be introducing shorter podcasts, 15 to 20 minutes, as teasers for the longer one-hour version. I enjoy getting my guests to talking about their lives, their hopes, sometimes their setbacks but mostly their achievements.

    The Empathetic Witness Podcast is a part of a charitable foundation I founded during the pandemic, Seventh Generation Indigenous Foundation and Training (GIFT) (seventhgift.ca) The podcast’s goal is to create a national conversation on Indigenous topics, highlight Indigenous peoples who are role models and have made a difference to Indigenous Peoples and Canadian citizens, and to assist in the healing from addiction, colonization, and trauma. The podcast format is based on compassionate inquiry. Compassionate inquiry is a psychotherapeutic approach developed by Dr. Gabor Maté, a Canadian physician who specializes in trauma and addictions and who is an advisor to GIFT Foundation.

    Empathetic Witness Podcast is found at Empathetic Witness (google.com)