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WHEN THE CUCKOO BIRD FLAPS ITS WINGS INSIDE YOUR HEAD

23 Jul
July 23, 2015

There is a well-established relationship between Parkinson’s Disease and mental illness.

I know.

After 20 years of Parkinson, and a life-altering medication mistake by an Emergency Room physician, I’ve endured my share of neuro-psychiatric demons.

I’ve also felt it’s a truism that the “creative brain is a troubled brain,” but I’ve never had the science to back it up.

Until now.

A genetic link between creativity and psychiatric illnesses

a_genetic_link_between_creativity_and_psychiatric_illnesses

The idea of a link between “madness” and “genius”, no doubt brings to mind a few notable examples: Vincent Van Gogh, the recently deceased John Nash, Virgina Woolf, the list goes on. Added to this, previous studies have shown that psychiatric disorders tend to run in families where creative professions are prominent. Despite the seemingly obvious connection of psychiatric illness to creativity, scientists have not been able to pinpoint whether the association is due to common genes or simply shared environmental factors. That is, until a recent study published in Nature Neuroscience found a common genetic link between creativity and the development of schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, implying the underlying mental processes also partly overlap. The results were based on an analysis of genetic data from 86,292 people in Iceland; revealing genetic risk scores for both schizophrenia and bipolar disorder were significantly higher among those defined as ‘creative’.
Would you be defined as ‘creative’?

Researchers define ‘creativity’ as someone who takes “novel approaches requiring cognitive processes that are different from prevailing modes of thought or expression.” In the study by Power et al., creative individuals were defined as those belonging to the national artistic societies of actors, dancers, musicians, visual artists and writers.
Does this answer the age-old question of “nature vs. nurture” for certain psychiatric illnesses? The answer to this question may best be put into words by the author himself, Dr. Robert A. Power: “Our findings suggest that creative people may have a genetic predisposition toward thinking differently which, when combined with other harmful biological or environmental factors, could lead to mental illness.”
Power et al. (June 2015). Polygenic risk scores for schizophrenia and bipolar disorder predict creativity. Nat Neurosci.

 

 

 

 

 

THE ELDER COMPANION TRAINING PROGRAM

19 Jul
July 19, 2015

Elder Companion: Overview1

Elizabeth B. Bolton and Muthusami Kumaran2

This document is best viewed as a PDF. Click here to access the PDF.

The Elder Companion Training Program

The Elder Companion training program is designed to train persons interested in becoming employed by local service providers as sitter/companions for the elderly. The objective of the program is to help participants develop the necessary skills to provide high-quality care including assistance with daily living activities, home management services, and companionship for the elderly adult.

This training course is preparatory to studying to become a certified nursing assistant (CNA).

In the Elder Companion training program, the following topics are addressed:

  • Elder Companion: Lesson 1 Roles and Responsibilities
  • Elder Companion: Lesson 2 Aging
  • Elder Companion: Lesson 3 Communication
  • Elder Companion: Lesson 4 Nutrition
  • Elder Companion: Lesson 5 Home Maintenance and Safety
  • Elder Companion: Lesson 6 Stress Management
  • Elder Companion: Lesson 7 Time Management
  • Elder Companion: Lesson 8 Leisure Activities
  • Elder Companion: Lesson 9 Getting a Job

In addition to the nine topics which are taught as Lessons 1 through 9 in a classroom setting, training program participants will be required to make a field observation at an elder care facility. An Agent’s guide and observation form are provided in Attachment 1.

Assumptions about the Elder Companion Training

  1. The Elder Companion Curriculum is designed to serve as a training guide for use by Extension county faculty or other professionals with expertise in the subject or content and type of learning activities to be used.
  2. The design of the training should be individualized to meet the needs of the local job market for elder sitters/companions.
  3. Training can be delivered in an approximate time frame of 35-40 hours with a minimum of 5 hours being a field observation at an elder care facility. Teaching/learning activities include short lectures, group discussions, demonstrations, skills practices, role playing, written exercises, and hands-on experiences for work with the elderly.
  4. The Elder Companion Training will be used to train people for employment by service providers/agencies. The initial cost of liability insurance and bonding make self-employment prohibitive for most participants.
  5. If the service provider/agency that employs the Elder Companion is required to provide a privacy practices notification in compliance with the Health Insurance Portability Act (HIPAA), it is their responsibility to send the notice to the client.
  6. All participants will be required to sign the form releasing the University of Florida of any liability.
  7. Participants who complete a minimum of 30 hours of class time and the field observation will receive a completion certificate from the agency providing the training.

Program Planning and Implementation Guide

  1. Contact your area/local agency on aging. They can provide information on the employers in your area.
  2. Assemble a group of people who will be hiring people as elder companions. Involve them in identification of:
    • requirements for employment;
    • training needs; and
    • job availability.

3. The following curriculum is available at the EDIS website: http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/TOPIC_Families_and_Consumers

    • Role/Responsibility of a Companion
    • Sensitivity to Aging
    • Communication Skills
    • Time and Stress Management
    • Managing Nutritional Needs
    • Home Maintenance
    • Using Leisure Time
    • Getting a Job as an Elder Companion

4. Compare local needs and requirements with what Cooperative Extension or other agencies are prepared to offer. Using this information, develop a plan of action.

5. Determine how potential trainees will be identified. Will they be screened for interest in working with the elderly? Will they do background checks?

6. Determine the dates, location, and persons who will be involved with the training (i.e. instructors, resource persons). Confirm any outside instructors who will take part in the training. Identify the locations for clients to complete their field observations, and confirm dates and times.

7. Duplicate any materials needed for the training. Handouts should be provided for each participant. These are a part of each lesson and are designed to be used as overheads. Some of the handouts are EDIS publications and are available fromhttp://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/TOPIC_Families_and_Consumers.

8. Conduct the training.

9. Give Pretests before each lesson and Posttests after each lesson to determine how much knowledge each participant absorbed. (See Attachment 2.)

10 After the training, issue certificates to individuals who complete the training. It will be necessary to keep an attendance record for each participant to insure that they complied with the completion requirements. (See Attachment 3.)

11. At the final session, have clients evaluate the training program. Evaluation forms are provided in Attachment 4.

Selection Process Considerations

Background Screening

Many of the companion/sitter jobs being advertised require background screening, drug testing and clearance by the Florida Abuse Registry under the Department of Children and Families. When taking a position with a service provider and/or agency, the background check and abuse registry requirements must be met within five days of the person going to work. There is a nominal fee for the background check.

It would seem reasonable that part of the screening process should be to eliminate people who are known to be drug users, or who have criminal or physically/mentally abusive backgrounds. This elimination process will avoid raising false hopes for obtaining employment. Some of the local providers for the job training are going to require the background checks as a prerequisite to participation in the training. Other sites will allow anyone to be trained and require the background checks as a condition of employment.

Issuing a letter along with the completion certificate will serve as a reference for future employment. The letter will state that the background checks, drug use, and abuse register clearance are the responsibility of the employer. A sample of this letter follows for your use and/or adaptation.

Sample Letter to Prospective Employers

Dear_______________________:

Attached you will find a list of persons who have successfully completed the 35-hour Elder Companion Class. The content of the training included sensitivity to aging, communication, nutrition, home maintenance and safety, time and stress management, and leisure activities for elderly clients. They have received their certificate of completion as of (date).

Also enclosed is a copy of their resumes, to familiarize you with their experience and background.

These graduates are trained caregivers whom you may choose to recommend as you receive requests for someone with these skills. We encourage you to suggest that your clients follow through with screening procedures by checking references, completing a background check, etc., since this is not a pre-requisite for our class.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact me at (____) _____________.

Sincerely,

_____________________________

Program Instructor

Desirable Skills

Many of the jobs being advertised require the following skills/resources as a condition for employment:

  • Ability to Read: The newspaper, the mail, directions on prescription bottles, preparation instructions for food, use of cleaning supplies.
  • Valid Driver’s License: To drive the elderly client to doctor appointments and/or the store.
  • Reliable Transportation: To get to work and arrive on time.

With the exception of ability to read, these are not requirements to participate in the training, but they would make the person more employable.

Desire to be Elder Companion

Working as an elder companion/sitter is not suitable employment for every individual. Even though there is an increasing need, placing the wrong person in a position with elderly clients could create a potentially harmful situation. It is highly desirable that only participants who are interested or have some experience in this type of employment be trained as Elder Companions.

Suggested Program Outline

DAY ONE

Roles and Responsibilities

Aging

DAY TWO

Communication

Nutrition

DAY THREE

Home Maintenance and Safety

Stress Management

Time Management

DAY FOUR

Leisure Activities

Getting a Job

DAY FIVE

Field Observation

DAY ONE

Suggested Daily Schedule

DAY TWO

Suggested Daily Schedule

DAY THREE

Suggested Daily Schedule

DAY FOUR

Suggested Daily Schedule

Table 1.

DAY ONE. Suggested Daily Schedule

DAY ONE

Time

Content

Resource Person(s)

8:30 – 9:45 Welcome

Registration

Get Acquainted

Overview and Objectives

Agreement

County Faculty
9:45 – 10:30 Introduction to the Job
10:30 – 10:45 Break
10:45 – 12:00 noon Introduction to the Job (continues)

• Clients’ Rights

• Roles and Responsibilities

• Personal Appearance

• Personal Qualities

• Ethics

• Dos and Don’ts

• Emergency Situations

• Daily Activity Lo

County Faculty and person from hiring agency
12:00 noon – 1:00 Lunch
1:00 – 3:00 Aging

• Who Are the Elderly?

• Facts about Older Americans

County Faculty; person from area local agency on aging
3:00 – 3:15 Break
3:15 – 4:30 Aging (continues)

• Physical Changes of the Elderly

• Elder Abuse

County Faculty; person from area local agency on aging
Table 2.

DAY TWO. Suggested Daily Schedule

DAY TWO

Time

Content

Resource Person(s)

8:30 – 10:30 Communication with the Elderly

• Communication Process

• Basic Human Needs

• Self-Awareness

•Sending A Message

County Faculty
10:30 – 10:45 Break
10:45 – 12:00 noon Communication (continues)

• Active Listening

• Physical and Emotional Blocks to Communication

County Faculty
12:00 noon – 1:00 Lunch
1:00 – 3:15 Managing Nutrition

Nutritional Health

Food Guide Pyramid

Are My Hands Clean?

How to Measure

Food Safety Guidelines

County Faculty; local dietitian
Table 3.DAY THREE. Suggested Daily Schedule

DAY THREE

Time

Content

Resource Person(s)

8:30 – 10:30 Home Maintenance and Safety

• What is Clean?

• Keeping the Client’s Home Clean

• Organizing for Cleanliness

County Faculty
10:30 – 10:45 Break
10:45 – 12:00 noon Home Maintenance (continues)

• Managing the Laundry

• Sanitation Procedures

• Safety

• Agreement with Client

County Faculty and person who works doing home maintenance
12:00 noon – 1:00 Lunch
1:00 – 3:00 Stress Management

• Stress—What is Yours?

• Warning Signs of Stress

• Job Stress for the Elder Companion

• Strategies to Deal with Stressors

County Faculty, Psychologist, Mental Health Professional
3:00 – 3:15 Break
3:15 – 4:30 Time Management

• How Do I Spend My Time?

• Prime Time

• Making Better Use of My Time

County Faculty
Table 4.DAY FOUR. Suggested Daily Schedule

DAY FOUR

Time Content Resource Person(s)
8:30 – 10:30 Leisure Activities

• Purposes of Leisure Activity for the Elderly

• Possible Activities for My Client

County Faculty and/or Recreation Staff Member
10:30 – 10:45 Break
10:45 – 12:00 noon Leisure Time Exercises

• Simple Exercises to Use with Clients

Exercise Physiologist
12:00 noon – 1:00 Lunch
1:00 – 3:00 Obtaining Employment

• Things I Like About Me

• What Do Employers Look For?

• Resume Writing and Application Completion

• Getting Letters of Reference

County Faculty and employer of Elder Companions
3:00 – 3:15 Break
3:15 – 4:30 The Interview Process

• Preparing for the Interview

• The Job Interview

• Contract for the Elder Companion

County Faculty or Human Resources Director

Elder Companion Training Outcomes and Student Performance Standards

Required Section (25 hours)

Table 5.

Required Section (25 hours)

Assist in the Care of the Elderly

Behavioral Outcome

Activities

Handouts

Describe the role of the companion in providing care and assistance to an elderly person. View clips from “Driving Miss Daisy” video. (Available at most video rental stores.)

Make a list of the roles performed by a companion

Roles and Responsibilities of the Elder Companion

Guidelines for Personal Appearance

Personal Qualities

Ethics

Client Rights

Describe the physical, social, emotional, and mental changes that may take place in aging. Sensory Exercises Physical Changes of the Elderly and Ways to Help
Describe the special needs of the elderly. Sensory Exercises Physical Changes of the Elderly and Ways to Help
Identify own feelings toward the elderly. Case Study
Describe problems of clients with decreased mobility, decreased vision or hearing, decreased tactile acuity, low energy, and confusion. Sensory Exercises
Describe symptoms of abuse and neglect. Exercise: Abuse and Neglect of the Elderly Emergency Reporting
Review the laws in reporting abuse or neglect of an elderly person.

Apply Effective Human Relationships and Interactions

Table 6.

Apply Effective Human Relationships and Interactions

Behavioral Outcome

Activities

Handouts

State four physical needs that all humans share. Human Need Scenarios Basic Human Needs
State three psychological needs that all humans share.
Describe how individuals and families differ. Case Study
Describe the need for dignity and circumstances which contribute to loss of self-esteem in elderly. Case Study
Demonstrate how emotional control affects human interactions and changing relationships and/or communication. Case Study
Explain what is meant by communication, and what verbal and non-verbal communication are. Exercise: Self-Awareness and Communication Suggestions for Communicating Behaviors Which Interfere with Listening
Demonstrate active listening skills and communication skills. Exercise: Receiving Messages

Exercise: Stating and Listening to Differences

Exercise: Active Listening

Suggestions for Active Listening
Demonstrate patience and techniques for working with other family members.

Assist Clients with Personal, Social, and Recreational Matters When Needed

Table 7.

Assist Clients with Personal, Social, and Recreational Matters When Needed

Behavioral Outcome

Activities

Handouts

Explain the importance of family and friends as part of the support system.
Explain the role of the companion in assisting a client with social and leisure activities such as reading, board games, music, or other social and recreational activities. Possible Activities
Identify accountability tools to show interaction with the clients… daily log/schedules. Daily Log
Demonstrate exercises for older adults. Role Playing of Exercises for Older Adults Exercises for Older Adults
Describe client’s need for privacy and confidentiality. Case Study

Assist in Maintaining a Safe and Sanitary Environment for Clients and Provide Personal Care Services for Clients

Table 8.

Assist in Maintaining a Safe and Sanitary Environment for Clients

Behavioral Outcome

Activities

Handouts

Demonstrate proper hand washing techniques. Hand washing exercise using black light. When to Wash?
Demonstrate proper storage and preparation of hot and cold foods. Practice Demonstration

Safety in the Kitchen

Check Sheets on Kitchen Hazards

Prevent Food Poisoning Food Safety and Storage
Describe how the spread of disease is controlled in the home in relationship to kitchens, bathrooms, laundry, dusting, and food handling. Demonstrate sanitation as it relates to laundry (if the person has an accident and soils themselves or bed, action has to be taken). What Is Clean?

Tools to Do the Job

Cleaning Agents to Do the Job

How to Clean

Organizing to Get the Work Done

Household Tasks – Rules of Organization

House Cleaning Plan

Weekly Plan for Household Cleaning

Describe emergency response (numbers, directions to the house, fire extinguishers). Role play emergency situation Emergency Reporting
Identify safety measures necessary for maintaining a safe environment such as clear traffic areas or walkways, loose rugs, electricity, and safety bars. View pictures and/or video which illustrate home hazards and identify them. Household Safety Checklist

Safety for Older Adults

Provide Personal Care Services for Clients
Explain the difference between administering medication and assisting with medication. Role playing assistance with medication Do’s and Don’ts

Demonstrate Stress Management

Table 9.

Demonstrate Stress Management

Behavioral Outcome

Activities

Handouts

Identify factors that create negative stress and explain how they affect behavior. (Needs to include alcohol.) Know Your Stressors

Warning Signals of Stress

Stress Diary

Check for Behavior Warning Signals

Describe methods of managing stress such as diets, leisure activities, and exercise. Role play what can be done forstress management Steps to Manage Stress

Handout on Exercise

Handout on Leisure Activities

Explain how problem-solving techniques help in stress management. Stressful Situations Scenarios Stress for an Elder Companion

Demonstrate Employability Skills

Table 10.

Demonstrate Employability Skills

Behavioral Outcome

Activities

Handouts

Look for a job. Things I Like about Me
Secure information about a job; skills and training required by the job. Job Search
Describe documents that maybe required when applying for a job. Information needed to apply for a job. Resume Writing

The Application

Complete a job application form correctly. The Application
Demonstrate competence in job interview techniques. (Dos and Don’ts in the interview.) Preparing for a Job Interview Questions You Can Ask

Questions Not to Ask

Identify acceptable work habits. (No smoking.) What Do I Have to Offer
Demonstrate acceptable employee health habits.
Write a resume for this specific job. Resume Writing My Practice Resume
Identify personal characteristics desired for working with people. What Are Employers Seeking? Top 20 Positive Characteristics Employers Are Seeking
Participate in a Field Observation program with someone who is an Elder Companion (5 Hours)

Optional Sections (7 hours is required in one of the following areas)

Provide Basic Homemaker Services to Client and Family

Table 11.

Provide Basic Homemaker Services to Client and Family

Behavioral Outcome

Activities

Handouts

Identify a logical order for performing tasks to save time and energy. Organizing to Get the Job Done Housekeeping Task- Rules of Organization

Household Cleaning Schedule

Weekly Plan for Household Cleaning

Demonstrate correct procedures for basic household cleaning tasks performed daily, weekly, monthly, and occasionally. What Is Clean?

How to Clean

How to Clean
Demonstrate correct procedures for selection, use, care, and storage of supplies and equipment. Tools to Do the Job

Cleaning Agents to Do the Job

Demonstrate correct procedures for laundry including stain removal. Managing the Laundry Eight Basic Steps to Clean Laundry

Develop Plans for Meeting Nutritional Needs of Clients and Families

Table 12.

Develop Plans for Meeting Nutritional Needs of Clients and Families

Behavioral Outcome

Activities

Handouts

Evaluate own diet for one week in relation to the Food Guide Pyramid Nutritional Health

The Food Guide Pyramid

What Did you Eat?
Assistance with preparation and serving of foods or meals according to the Food Guide Pyramid considering client’s cultural preferences and personal needs. When Do I Wash?
Apply the principles of special diets that may be used in the plan for care of the client; i.e., measure food accurately by using correct procedures and equipment. How Do I Measure?
Explain ways to assist a client with feeding without feeding the client. Dos and Don’ts
Apply the principles of food safety and storage. Keeping Food Safe Smart Not Sorry- Keep Food Safety in Mind

Prevent Food Poisoning

Adapted by Extension Professionals attending Elder Companion Training, March, 1999. Original source: Florida Department of Education, Curriculum Framework, Elderly and Disabled Care Services, July 1998.

Elder Companion Teaching Activities

Table 13.Elder Companion Teaching Activities.

Roles and Responsibilities

Overview of Training

Roles and Responsibilities

Dos and Don’ts for the Elder Companion

Handling Emergencies

Clients’ Rights

Aging

Who Are the Elderly?

Physical Changes

Elder Abuse

Communication

Basic Human Needs

Self-Awareness/Sending Messages

Active Listening

Nutrition

Nutritional Health

The Food Guide Pyramid

How Do I Wash My Hands?

How Do I Measure?

Food Safety

Home Maintenance and Safety

What is Clean?

Tools to Do the Job

Cleaning Agents to Do the Job

How to Clean

Organizing to Get the Job Done

Managing the Laundry

General Home Safety

Safety in the Kitchen

Stress Management

What Is Your Stress?

Warning Signals of Stress

Handling Stress

Stress for the Elder Companion

Time Management

Time Analysis

Prime Time

Organizing Time

Leisure Activities

Why Engage in Leisure Activities?

Leisure Activities for the Elderly

Exercises for Older Adults

Getting the Job

Things I Like About Me

What Are Employers Seeking?

Job Search

Resume Writing

The Application

Preparing for a Job Interview

Interview Questions You Might Be Asked

The Job Interview

Sample Contract for the Elder Companion

Field Observation

Field Observation (5 hours)

Debriefing the Observation

Credits and Acknowledgments

The Elder Companion Training curriculum was originally developed as a component of the UF/IFAS Welfare-to-Work Initiative (Grant #A6218) funded by the Florida Agency for Workforce Innovation (formerly Florida Department of Labor and Employment Security); Principal Investigator, Elizabeth B. Bolton, professor of Community Development, Department of Family, Youth and Community Sciences.

The curriculum was developed by Linda D. Cook, former Professor, University of Florida, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, Family, Youth and Community Sciences, and revised for electronic publication by Elizabeth B. Bolton, professor of Community Development, University of Florida, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, Department of Family, Youth and Community Sciences.

Parts of the Elder Companion program were adapted from the Home Care Companion program first developed by the Alabama Cooperative Extension Service, Auburn University, and the Senior Series developed by the Center for Rural Elderly and the University of Missouri.

Attachments

Attachment 1

Agent Guide Field Observation

Time: 5 hours (all at one time/or at various intervals in the training.)

Introduction: The best way to see what the job of Elder Companion will be like is to shadow someone for a period of time during their work day. We have arranged for each of you to make a field observation in the community. After your field observation, we will reconvene to discuss what you observed.

DO:

  • Review with the Elder Companion trainees the Field Observation Sheet.
  • Discuss conduct which is appropriate for a field observation.
  • Send trainees to their field observation.

REFLECT:

  • What was the Elder Companion/Sitter doing with the client while you were present?
  • What was the relationship between the elderly person and the companion?
  • Would you have done anything differently?
  • What did the companion do well?
  • What did you learn?

APPLY:

  • How will you use this in your work as an elder companion?

Field Observation Sheet

Date of Field Observation: __________________________________________________.

Location of Field Observation: _______________________________________________.

List of the Job Responsibilities Observed:

Describe the elderly person being cared for:

Describe the relationship between the elderly person and the companion:

List things that you learned during the Field Observation:

Identify any areas where you would have dealt with the situation differently:

Name of Person Observed:________________________________________________.

Name of Person Doing the Observation:______________________________________.

Attachment 2

Knowledge Tests: Roles and Responsibilities

Name:______________________

Date:_______________________

Agent Fill In:

Pretest – Posttest (Circle one)

T F A companion always knows what is best for the client.

T F A companion may wear the same clothes two days in a row if the clothes do not look dirty.

T F A companion’s shoes should not have open toes or high heels.

T F It is always okay for a companion to wear perfume.

T F When caring for elderly clients, you should encourage self-care and independence.

In dealing with the client’s medicines, a companion should NEVER:

_____(a) put pills in a client’s mouth.

_____(b) hand the client a medicine bottle when asked.

_____(c) remind a client when to take a medicine.

_____(d) tell the person in charge if a client is not taking medicine.

Name two responsibilities that a companion may have.

  • _____________________________________________________________________
  • _____________________________________________________________________

Knowledge Tests: Aging

Name:___________________________

Date:____________________________

Agent Fill In:

Pretest – Posttest (Circle one)

T F Elderly people are all alike.

T F Changes in hearing can affect a person’s behavior.

T F As we age, our bones are more brittle and more likely to break.

T F Older people have some of the same basic human needs as do young people.

Name three senses that aging affects.

(a)___________________________________________________

(b)___________________________________________________

(c)___________________________________________________

Name two steps to take in an emergency situation.

(a)___________________________________________________

(b)___________________________________________________

Knowledge Tests: Communication

Name:___________________________

Date:____________________________

Agent Fill In:

Pretest – Posttest (Circle one)

T F For good communication, it is important to listen well.

To improve communication with persons who have a hearing problem, you can do which of the following? (Check as many as apply.)

_____(a) speak at a shout.

_____(b) speak clearly in a moderate voice.

_____(c) vary the loudness and tone of your voice.

_____(d) face the person directly.

_____(e) talk faster.

Knowledge Tests: Nutrition

Name:___________________________

Date:____________________________

Agent Fill In:

Pretest – Posttest (Circle one)

T F Hand washing is very important in preventing the spread of disease.

Older people may not eat well because:

_____(a) they can not afford the right food.

_____(b) they are physically unable to shop and prepare food.

_____(c) they do not like eating alone.

_____(d) all of the above.

Name three occasions when the companion should wash his or her hands.

(a)_____________________________________________________

(b)_____________________________________________________

(c)_____________________________________________________

Name three of the five major food groups.

(a)_________________________________

(b)_________________________________

(c)_________________________________

Knowledge Tests: Home Maintenance

Name:___________________________

Date:____________________________

Agent Fill In:

Pretest – Posttest (Circle one)

T F Keeping a house clean means different things to different people.

T F Baking soda is good for deodorizing the refrigerator.

T F Sorting is an important step in doing laundry.

Knowledge Tests: Stress/Time Management

Name:___________________________

Date:____________________________

Agent Fill In:

Pretest – Posttest (Circle one)

T F Stress can be both good and bad.

T F Time management helps you have more time.

T F Prime time is when the soap operas are on.

T F Sleeplessness is a warning sign of stress.

Knowledge Tests: Leisure Activities

Name:___________________________

Date:____________________________

Agent Fill In:

Pretest – Posttest (Circle one)

T F Confused individuals are not able to enjoy recreational activities.

T F Elderly people can engage in physical activities.

T F Physical and leisure activities address the social needs of clients.

Record of Attendance

Attachement 4

Evaluation of Training

Please complete the following to help us evaluate the Elder Companion Training.

1. Of the information presented and experiences offered, how helpful do you think each lesson will be to you? (Circle one for each lesson.)

Roles and Responsibilities

Very Helpful

Helpful

Not Helpful

Aging

Very Helpful

Helpful

Not Helpful

Communication

Very Helpful

Helpful

Not Helpful

Nutrition

Very Helpful

Helpful

Not Helpful

Home Maintenance and Safety

Very Helpful

Helpful

Not Helpful

Stress Management

Very Helpful

Helpful

Not Helpful

Time Management

Very Helpful

Helpful

Not Helpful

Leisure Activities

Very Helpful

Helpful

Not Helpful

Getting a Job

Very Helpful

Helpful

Not Helpful

Field Observation

Very Helpful

Helpful

Not Helpful

2. How do you plan to use the information you learned? (Check all that apply.)

_____ as an elder companion employed for wages

_____ as a volunteer companion

_____ to care for family member or friend

_____ I probably will not use it

_____ other (please explain) _________________________________________

3. How would you rate this program?

Excellent ____ Very Good ____ Good ____ Fair ____ Poor ___

4. What suggestions would you make for improving this program? (If you need more room, write on the back of this sheet.)

5. Have you ever attended an Extension activity before? _____Yes ____No

6. Would you like to receive information about other Extension educational opportunities?

___Yes ___No

If yes, give address below.

Additional Comments:______________________________________________________

_______________________________________________________________________

_______________________________________________________________________

_______________________________________________________________________

Name (optional)__________________________________________________________

Address:_________________________________________________________________

Tables

Table 14.Record of Attendance.

Attachment 3

RECORD OF ATTENDANCE

Name

Dates

Footnotes

1.

This document is FCS5246, one of a series of the Family Youth and Community Sciences Department, UF/IFAS Extension. Original publication date October 2003. Revised May 2015. Visit the EDIS website at http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu.

2.

Elizabeth B. Bolton, Ph.D., professor emerita; and Muthusami Kumaran, assistant professor, Department of Family, Youth and Community Sciences, UF/IFAS Extension, Gainesville, FL 32611.


The Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (IFAS) is an Equal Opportunity Institution authorized to provide research, educational information and other services only to individuals and institutions that function with non-discrimination with respect to race, creed, color, religion, age, disability, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, national origin, political opinions or affiliations. For more information on obtaining other UF/IFAS Extension publications, contact your county’s UF/IFAS Extension office.

U.S. Department of Agriculture, UF/IFAS Extension Service, University of Florida, IFAS, Florida A & M University Cooperative Extension Program, and Boards of County Commissioners Cooperating. Nick T. Place, dean for UF/IFAS Extension.

The Family Of Man

15 Jul
July 15, 2015

iStock_000026972563Small

As we stand on the brink of extinction, we become mindful.

In a Petri Dish, standing shoulder-to-shoulder with seven billion, we become mindful.

Living in a house of cards, whose foundation is the threat of terror and the fear of scarcity, we become mindful.

Watching children become joy-resistant strains of self-detonating predators, we become mindful.

In a country where 6% of the planet’s population own over 50% of its wealth – and are chronically unhappy – we become mindful.

In an Oval Office where the name of the Nazarene is passed around like Pez; and biblical scholars and theologians search in vain for the elusive reference to collateral damage, we become mindful.

In the offices of corporations who turn shares of Plough into swords; and men with tiny hearts live on glaciers of ambition, we become mindful.

Seeking refuge in the unity of nations, we turn to the five permanent members of the UN Security Council, only to discover they are the world’s five largest arms dealers, we become mindful.

In becoming mindful, we rise above our feral nature to discover the the pure, inexhaustible waters of compassion, and learn to turn that stream of compassion inward.

In becoming mindful, we open ourselves to transcendent hope: kernels of human potential and opportunity that exist in the vortex of challenge and adversity.

In time, mindfulness becomes an indefatigable commitment to wisdom, personal courage and self discovery despite the psychotic brutality of terrorism: the ultimate act of anti-evolution.

The Family of Man reaches out like an empty hand to remind us of a simple truth: the source of our greatest strength is without shape or form, subject neither to birth nor death. And that which is beyond birth and death is also beyond terror. And no IED or car bomb in the universe will ever alter that.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As we stand on the brink of extinction, we become mindful.

In a Petri Dish, standing shoulder-to-shoulder with six billion, we become mindful.

Living in a house of cards, whose foundation is the threat of terror and the fear of scarcity, we become mindful.

Watching children become joy-resistant strains of self-detonating predators, we become mindful.

In a country where 6% of the planet’s population own over 50% of its wealth – and are chronically unhappy – we become mindful.

In an Oval Office where the name of the Nazarene is passed around like Pez; and biblical scholars and theologins search in vain for the elusive reference to collateral damage, we become mindful.

In the offices of corporations who turn shares of Plough into swords; and men with tiny hearts live on glaciers of ambition, we become mindful. Seeking refuge in the unity of nations, we turn to the five permanent members of the UN Security Council, only to discover they are the world’s five largest arms dealers, we become mindful.

In becoming mindful, we discover the the pure, inexhaustable waters of compassion, and learn to turn that stream of compassion inward.

In becoming mindful, we open ourselves to transcendent hope: kernels of human potential and opportunity that exist in the vortex of challenge and adversity.

In time, mindfulness becomes an indefatigable commitment to wisdom, personal courage and self discovery despite the psychotic brutality of terrorism: the ultimate act of anti-evolution.

A Morning of Mindfulness reaches out like an empty hand to remind us of a simple truth: the source of our greatest strength is without shape or form, subject neither to birth nor death. And that which is beyond birth and death is also beyond terror. And no box-cutter or car bomb in the universe will ever alter that.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As we stand on the brink of extinction, we become mindful.

In a Petri Dish, standing shoulder-to-shoulder with seven billion, we become mindful.

Living in a house of cards, whose foundation is the threat of terror and the fear of scarcity, we become mindful.

Watching children become joy-resistant strains of self-detonating predators, we become mindful.

In a country where 6% of the planet’s population own over 50% of its wealth – and are chronically unhappy – we become mindful.

In an Oval Office where the name of the Nazarene is passed around like Pez; and biblical scholars and theologins search in vain for the elusive reference to collateral damage, we become mindful.

In the offices of corporations who turn shares of Plough into swords; and men with tiny hearts live on glaciers of ambition, we become mindful. Seeking refuge in the unity of nations, we turn to the five permanent members of the UN Security Council, only to discover they are the world’s five largest arms dealers, we become mindful.

In becoming mindful, we discover the the pure, inexhaustable waters of compassion, and learn to turn that stream of compassion inward.

In becoming mindful, we open ourselves to transcendent hope: kernels of human potential and opportunity that exist in the vortex of challenge and adversity.

In time, mindfulness becomes an indefatigable commitment to wisdom, personal courage and self discovery despite the psychotic brutality of terrorism: the ultimate act of anti-evolution.

A Morning of Mindfulness reaches out like an empty hand to remind us of a simple truth: the source of our greatest strength is without shape or form, subject neither to birth nor death. And that which is beyond birth and death is also beyond terror. And no box-cutter or car bomb in the universe will ever alter that.

 

FEAR SWALLOWER

16 Jun
June 16, 2015

Joy Loverde

Virtually every day for the last ten years – barring overextended itineraries(hers) or medical emergencies(mine) – I log into Skype about 6:00 AM EST  and place a call to my dearest friend on the planet – Joy Loverde.  Author of The Complete Eldercare Planner. This successful author, mother and eldercare advocate is not only my friend; but over the last decade our friendship has blossomed, like a special flower, rooted in mud and pond scum, to rise through murky waters and become a Lotus.

A couple of  weeks ago, she configured her smart phone to stream video and treated me to a visit at Chicago’s Lincoln Park Zoo – just two blocks from her home. I enjoyed the virtual tour immensely, especially in the moments that this fearless woman spent with the zebra, lion and tiger. As we approached the protective barrier for each animal, they seemed to stop what they were doing and focus completely on Joy. What I’ve learned from this amazing woman is the topic for another post.

 

Today, I’d like to introduce you to David Goff’s Salient Risk.

Salient Risk

A report from the Slow Lane

There is only one way I know that takes my worries and anxieties and turns them into growth and maturation. This is a move that, in my mind , is equivalent to turning a pile of straw into gold. This, however, is not a DavD-tale task, it is a real-life escape into freedom. When it comes to living fully, balls out, gut-extending, risking, then I think that one has to make an intentional effort. And when one does, by actually going to bat for oneself, then one has to use their head and come up with something I call “salient risk.”

A salient risk is one that is personally cooked-up for the express purpose of putting one’s sense of self on the line. The personal part is where the salience lives. This is the kind of risk-taking that can only come from the inside out. That makes it a rare form of risk, which many people have a hard time conceiving of. It takes self-knowledge. Real self-knowledge, not the kind made-up to make oneself feel good, but the kind that unfailingly haunts one, with more than one wants to know about one’s self. This kind of self-knowing, the kind that isn’t based on certainty, resides in our self-doubts.

It is not-knowing, feeling greatly uncertain, being dubious even, about one’s own character, which makes this form of risking so powerful, and so on-target. There is a hair-raising, harrowing quality, that is extremely germane, central even (to one’s fears), that empowers this kind of risk-taking. It is like a ropes course, only without the safety harnesses and nets. People go to this extreme, in themselves, because they love the idea of being themselves. And one cannot find out who one is without salient risks.

This is the self-administered test, the one where there is really doubt about the outcome. Strangely, the benefits that come from this kind of risk-taking, are exactly proportional to the amount of uncertainty aroused by it. This is both the confidence-builder, and the test for hubris. The good news is that one gets a better, more accurate picture of reality no matter what. Simply risking everything, throwing one’s self into the grave, has the paradoxical impact, of strengthening the self. So, one of the best formula for growing the self is putting it to the test through salient risk-taking.

I first came up with the idea of salient risk when I was learning about ways of undermining chronic anxiety. You know, the “what-if” stuff that keeps one anticipating some disastrous future. I found that a burst of acute anxiety, anxiety grounded in the reality of the moment, had an effect upon one’s ability to tolerate chronic anxiety, so it didn’t tend to run the show. The effect is, that by weathering the storm, the spike of real in-the-moment acute (higher than usual) anxiety, one develops one’s tolerance for anxiety, and this feels like being less anxious. There isn’t really any important change in one’s level of chronic anxiety, but there is a new level of tolerance of anxiety, and this translates subjectively into a greater confidence.

I didn’t know it yet, but I had stumbled into a discovery of the emotional immune system. It turns out, that each of us is equipped, by Nature’s providence, with an on-board system for dealing with the emotional character of this ride through Life. In other words, each of us can become more solid, and resilient, by looking for anxiety-provoking circumstances of the right magnitude, and putting ourselves through them. Later, I realized this was a kind of self-building process. After that, I have been on the look-in for these kind of opportunities.

Maturation, it turns out, is partly self-directed. We are all like our cousins, the salmon. It is our desire to be all that we can be, that takes us out to sea, but it is the even greater desire to fully be ourselves, which draws us back to the source. Risking ourselves is how we swim and develop the capacity to deal with obstacles.

We live in a society that doesn’t provide many ladders, that has very little idea of the source, that doesn’t easily regard inner evolution. So it is up to each of us, to create for ourselves the wherewithal to turn ourselves free. The real ladders, desire and source are all within. Salient risk unlocks the inner door, and each of us must muster the courage, in the face of the pressing unknown, to motivate ourselves, and enter.

There are no free lunches. There is no ride through life, where Life itself, doesn’t ask things of us. Salient risk-taking is one of those things. One can live without it, but how one lives, and how much of Life one embraces, depends upon the saliency of the risking involved

l/d

*          *           *          *           *          *           *          *           *          *           *          *

For more pieces like this, go to  http://www.elderssalon2.blogspot.com  (2014 on)

To hear archived versions of our radio program Growing An Elder Culture go to www.elderculture.com

To read excerpts, or otherwise learn, about Embracing Life: Toward A Psychology of Interdependence go to http://www.davidgoff.net

 

voices

09 Jun
June 9, 2015

Voices by Martin Bayne
Wikipedia | NY Times | Washington Post | Health Affairs

Recently, I had an insight that has changed the way I think, feel, and respond to nearly every component of long-term care.

It all began during a conversation I had five days ago with a fellow resident we’ll call ‘RF’, a woman in her mid-90s who was having significant assisted living transition issues — loneliness, helplessness, and despair had become her 24/7 companions. At some point in the conversation, she folded her hands in her lap, looked me in the eye and said, “I appreciate your kindness, but all I really want to do is die.”

In previous conversations with others, when I’d reached this juncture, it was as if a black hole event horizon had been breached – and deep within the canyons of my mind, klaxons sounded and a loud voice repeated the warning:

 “DANGER – Possible Suicide Risk. Proceed with caution. Notify the proper medical authorities.”

But the shouting never materialized.

Not five days ago. Not yesterday. Not today.

Why? I haven’t a clue. All I know is my inner voice has changed. Yes, there’s still a voice. There’s still plenty of ‘back-chatter’, a vast array of demons still occupy my cranial space, but it’s a kinder cranial space – not as much yelling and screaming, and the default communication’s bridge, the primary interface to my fellow human being, simpler, yet metamorphic. It whispers eight words that change lives forever:

Living brings delicious dangers,

dying is completely safe.

Later that evening, just before falling asleep, I stumbled onto the following passage in a book I hadn’t picked up for a year:

Nothing real can be threatened

Nothing unreal exists

Herein lies the Peace of God

The outcomes from the Inner Voice are already clear. When I walk by a resident sitting in her wheelchair in the lobby; sitting in exactly the same spot she sits all day, every day, I’m less likely to judge her, to form an opinion that says: Something is wrong with this woman. She’s not engaged. She’s not living her life to the fullest. She might as well be dead.  

Well, maybe she IS dying. And perhaps, just perhaps what we perceive as resignation and despair is nothing more than a desire to listen to that still, small voice within – a need to surrender everything tangible and intangible in preparation for the journey home.

In short, is it really necessary to make dying that complicated? We trust nature and the Eternal to bring us into this life, is it that incongruous to believe they can safely guide us out?

Yes, I know. What about the resident who is mentally ill? How do we determine if the behavior we witness with our resident is catatonic or cathartic?

How will we know?

We will ask her.

 

Copyright Martin Bayne © 2015

 

 

SLOWING DOWN

12 May
May 12, 2015

Slowing Down

A report from the Slow Lane

Two major sources of grief, and one delight have come over my horizon. They haunt me. As much as the world is changing, I have detected very little movement regarding these first two matters. And, I am elated by the last one, a surprising development, which alters everything, despite efforts for or against it.

This brings me to explain. I started sharing the Slow Lane writings, some 10 years ago. They evolved from being sections of my journal, which I felt moved to share with my community, to what you see appearing here. I gave these written reflections the title of The Slow Lane to emphasize my awareness that slowing down, something the stroke and brain damage did to me, revealed other important aspects of reality. My altered time sense was my motive for sharing this new (to me) perspective.

As I mentioned, it is now 10 years, since I began sharing the wealth that came to me, because fate slowed me down. Every year, to celebrate the importance of the altered perspective that I have been introduced to, I have written one, or more, of these Slow Lane pieces, emphasizing the dangers of speed. I wanted to give words to how life-changing this awareness is. Sadly, one of the grief’s I have, is that life keeps speeding by. My humble words have made little difference. The bubble of my naivete has burst.

This loss of narcissistic hope has furthered my second grief. I have a sense of what is being missed as the cultural and commercial worlds speed along. I feel the ache of all, that isn’t just slow, but moves at something other than the machine speed of our times. The grief I feel— is the grief of Life — being overlooked and overridden by the cultural exigencies of the moment. There is a little piece of everything that is dependent on relationship, which expires under the pressure of speed. I ache in all the places, where I know connection lives. I feel the violence inherent in hurrying.

Living under the weight of racing — I long for the freeing relief I am finding — as I am aging. Decrepitude carries many gifts. They all aren’t about the illusion of being somehow young. Some just creep into life, slowly transforming it, into the miracle it is. I have been pleasantly surprised to discover, that along with greying and wrinkling, comes time. Time to move at the pace of authenticity, to genuinely go the speed that satisfies.

So, this is my delight, a feeling of elation really. Life has conspired to create an era of human life, whereby we humans, despite our culture-of-origin, wealth, education, or position, are slowed down, and confronted with our own existence. For a while we, humans, become human beings (as opposed to human doings) again, naturally. Life delivers an age of integration, a delicious interlude, a chance to catch up, a glimpse of the big picture, and noticing, suddenly becomes intelligence. Old age isn’t a sentence. It is natural democracy. Anyway, I like it, because it provides lots of slowly unfolding perspective.

I’ve written, too many times, that “speed kills.”  I’m not so young, or naïve enough, to believe in efficiency anymore. An inconvenient truth, is that the slow way is actually the fast way around. I’ve learned that we are more complex than most of what motivates us.  The truth is, that the lie of efficiency, and doing things faster is, that what matters to me, the subtle signals of relationship lines, and fields of connection, are de-valued, and like the old, are dismissed and abandoned. This is waste not efficiency! What delights me, is that Life has taught me this, and what grieves me, is that I live in a cultural world where this important lesson has been largely ignored.

The truth about speed, in a Universe that has taken billions of years to get to this moment, is that it misses what really has gotten us here. The Universe had the patience; one might even say the wise necessity — to unfold Life within the bounds of time. It takes time to create a miracle, while it takes almost no time, as most hustling businesses believe, to innovate. Slow is actually the sign of quality, while speed only delivers short-term benefits (and then only to some).

Try panting your way through life.

I’m tired, all the hurrying wears on me. I don’t have to participate. In fact, I can’t. But, I’m still affected. The rejuvenating relationships that feed, and sustain me, are under assault. I worry about the future, about the young, the planet, life as a whole. And therein, lies a darkness, I am not in a hurry to get to. Instead, I want to bask in the ever-present glow of enoughness. Eternity is right here, right now.

If, I go slow enough, I sometimes perceive the stealthy timekeeper, the one who has a moment for each existence. When that happens my fears dissolve, and breathing becomes easier — as does all life. If only I can develop enough immunity, to what is going on around me, to not forget, and try my version of hurrying too.

l/d

*          *           *          *           *          *           *          *           *          *           *          *

For more pieces like this, go to  http://www.elderssalon2.blogspot.com  (2014 on)

To hear archived versions of our radio program Growing An Elder Culture go to www.elderculture.com

To read excerpts, or otherwise learn, about Embracing Life: Toward A Psychology of Interdependence go to http://www.davidgoff.net

 

SOTO ZEN, H. PYLORI and BILL THOMAS’ AGE OF DISRUPTION

24 Apr
April 24, 2015

109

In 1981, if you had stopped Dr. William Thomas on the street and asked him for a brief summary of stomach ulcers – the Harvard-trained physician would probably have (1) described the anatomy and physiology of the stomach and small intestine, (2) elucidated the likely causative agent of ulcers in the stomach and duodenum and (3) presented treatment protocols. (For the purposes of this discussion, it should be noted that in 1981, stress, diet and dysfunctional HCL acid receptors were thought to be the primary causative agents).

A year later, in 1982, Barry Marshall, a physician and research biochemist, would discover and describe an unshakeable relationship between the ulcers and the screw-like bacterium Heliobacter Pylori.

Doctor Marshall was ridiculed, mocked and derided – his colleagues would not even publish the original study for five years.

Then, in 1994, with overwhelming evidence now supporting Dr. Marshal’s conclusion, the National Institutes of Health convened a consensus panel that issued guidelines for the management of ulcer disease, taking H. pylori into account.

Arthur Schopenhauer, perhaps the most influential philosopher of the nineteenth century, described the three stages in the recognition of any truth:

First, it is ridiculed; next, it is resisted; and finally, it is considered self-evident.

*****

            Let’s shift temporal gears for a moment . . .

In 1972 I read the book – Be Here Now by Ram Dass (Richard Alpert) – from cover to cover, standing in a book store in Middletown, New York. For me, the most seminal concept the book offered was a simple one: Beginners mind is  free and uncluttered mind.

            I bought the book, made a couple of phone calls, and a week later was on a plane to California for a two-week workshop entitled Selling Water by the River. My host for the two week class was Shasta Abbey, a Soto Zen Buddhist monastery in the Serene Reflection Tradition.

As it turned out, my stay was not weeks – but years. And what did I learn during those years as a monk? I learned to ask the following question of myself every morning as I sat in the meditation hall

WHAT IF NEARLY EVERYTHING I THINK I KNOW ABOUT MYSELF IS WRONG?

            As my training deepened, this question was the single most important one I asked of myself as a monk.  Ultimately, there was no way to avoid it.  If we are to discover who we truly are, during this Great Age of Disruption, we must all stand toe-to-toe with our demons – imagined or real. Saint John of the Cross and the Dark Night of the Soul; Jesus of Nazareth in the desert; Shakyamuni Buddha in zazen under the Bodhi Tree; David standing against Goliath; Reverend Martin Luther King Jr. arm-in-arm in Selma.

And the day will come when we find and muster the courage within each of us to accept the challenges and rewards of growing old. And during those great days – even as we are born, live, grow old and die as Nature intended – we will discover who we truly are.

Let’s Make Sure She Hits the Ground Running

15 Apr
April 15, 2015

immigration

Dear Ms. Clinton

Can you even imagine what it’s like to be housed in a facility filled with floors of fellow residents crippled with disabilities and struggling to keep their head above the ambient despair of depression, dementia, and death?

I can.

Although I’m only sixty-five years old, I’ve spent the last thirteen of these years as a resident of an assisted living facility (Young-Onset Parkinson’s).

Recently, I was struck with an idea so simple, efficient, and powerful, I was compelled to call my closest friends to share the idea with them. To the person, they responded – “How can I help?”

Now, I’m going to share that idea with you – with the sincere hope that you, too, will call me with one simple question . . .

“How can I help?”

THE 2017 CARE ACT                         

This legislation is designed to create an entrance strategy for foreign nationals who wish to become US citizens, while simultaneously easing the burden of long-term care on American families.

The program itself is straightforward: a person seeking US citizenship applies for a visa under The 2017 Care Act. This special visa binds the applicant to an American family for “x” number of years – a negotiated period of time (minimum value for x is five) in which they will care for a member of the family who needs long-term care.

During this period, known as the “care stage”, the applicant is responsible for the care (Activities of Daily Living – bathing, feeding, transferring, etc.) of the family member for the agreed-upon compensation and number of hours/days/week.

The host family is responsible for the applicant’s housing and meals during the care stage. Ideally, the applicant has familial ties to the host family.

At the end of the care contract, the applicant has satisfied his/her portion of the contract and is free to live out the remainder of their life as an American Citizen with no further obligation to the host family.

13 Apr
April 13, 2015

Comparison of Assisted Living vs Nursing Homes

by Skilled Nursing Facilities and Assisted Living Facilities

When the Soul Matriculates

08 Apr
April 8, 2015

I am a fortunate man. Not only was I given the opportunity to study at the most prestigious technical school in the world — The Massachusetts Institute of Technology, but I also trained for a number of years at a Soto Zen Buddhist monastery: Shasta Abbey, Mt. Shasta, California.

At MIT, my focus was on the biochemistry of the human cell – and my teachers included Nobel laureates David Baltimore and Philip Sharp, At Shasta Abbey, under the watchful eye of Reverend Master Jiyu Kennet Roshi, author of Selling Water by the River, a gifted musician who trained as a novitiate at Japan’s Sojiji Temple – the first woman to do so in 600 years, I learned how to “eat when hungry and sleep when tired.”   Monastery 1974

There is no way to compare the two educational experiences except to say:

MIT trained you to become the best in the world at what you did, and Shasta Abbey trained you to experience the simple and immutable truth that, regardless of what you ‘did,’ you are always complete and whole just as you are.

Over the years, I created a list, The Nine Principles of Dynamic Kindnessbased on what I’d learned after 44 years of insight meditation. (zazen) 

 

 

1. With gratitude, both “good” and “bad” become capable teachers.

2. With generosity, even small stones can create great ripples.

3. With tenderness, we turn the stream of compassion within.

4. With stillness, we sit quietly in the center of the cyclone.

5. With insight, we accept the change of life’s seasons

6. With courage, we move forward – despite our fear.

7. With service, no time to ask, “Why am I here?”

8. With forgiveness, we discover true freedom.

9. With faith, we learn to surrender.

Martin Bayne. All rights reserved.