1st March 2022


Hung out to Dry

Big hugs and caring wishes to many friends and readers affected by the floods demolishing southeast Queensland and northern NSW (Australia).

It’s been horrifying to watch.

And strange to be under blue skies, far away at my sister's in Hervey Bay. Raced up for my brother in law’s funeral. Expected to be just a few days but with the floods there's no going home yet. Left a couple of bananas in my car parked at Brisbane airport, and am anticipating a rotten banana stink bomb on return (if car still there and not tugged away by floodwater!!).

So dreadful for flood-affected folk losing homes, cars, pets, lives. And here am I thinking about bananas in my car safe (hopefully) at Brisbane airport.


Uncertainty triggers a cascade of mind states.

There's nothing like a disaster to amp up both the caregiving system (compassion for others) and the threat response (what if my car gets washed away, what about the bananas).

Do you find you alternate between compassion for the people affected and horror for damage to property, pets, loved ones?

Between feel-good and feel-fearful.

The tribal-survival adaption of the hardwired caregiving circuitry rewards us with feel-good dopamine when we step up and help. Read more  

On the fear side, the prospect of rising flood waters lights up the threat system in the body like location markers blinking on a disaster map.


Facebook post, 28th February 2022


A Mindfulness Angle

It’s possible, even advisable, to let yourself experience two opposing emotions at once: compassion and fear alongside each other.

Not in competition.


So your fear is not alone, dominating. Compassion is woven in.

And to deliberately call upon the opposite of a difficult emotion. For example, if you're feeling ungrounded, call upon the feeling of groundedness for support. 

Here is a fantastic audio titled "Welcoming Opposites of Feelings and Emotions" guided by Richard Miller of iRest, a program to heal PTSD, chronic pain, insomnia and chemical dependency.

Read more about linking opposite emotions: 

H.E.A.L. with Rick Hanson

Home-made Mantra joyfulmind blogpost

On the Edge


Manali photo by Surya Teja, Unsplash


Melting snow for tea, Himalayas 1993

The hardwired aspect of the caregiving system is an interesting one.

I remember once Nish and I were resting in the hamlet of Manali in the Himalayas.

The snow season was ending and leftover pockets of snowy ice dotted the hillsides. One day we decided to shortcut over one of the hills to buy provisions (probably sugar … and definitely bananas).

When we were halfway up, at some distance from each other, each of us independently realised the hill was a hell of a lot steeper than it had looked from below. Radically so. Dangerously so.

The sense you get when you pay your money at Dreamworld to go on the rollercoaster. Suddenly you’re ‘up there’ … and you wish you weren’t. Please, you pray, would a kindly hand come out of the sky and lift me to safety.



> Like the people on rooftops in the floods were wishing. <

Somehow we both got to the top, each hugely relieved to find the other had survived too.

The interesting thing about it was that neither of us had been fearing for our own personal safety. Nish, as it turned out, had been thinking only of my safety as he clung to the precipitous hillside, handhold by slippery icy handhold. Just as I had been focussed only on his, as each foothold and handhold edged me closer up … making the vertical drop below even more menacing.

The care-giving survival system in action.


A Bright Spot


Puppy Remy, half Jack Russel, half mini fox terrier.

The up-side of this week (funeral, floods) is that my sister was given a puppy. What joy! Highly recommended for grieving and losing. It's a welcome distraction here in Hervey Bay to have a cute, adorable furry companion frisking about!

>> Provided you have a home that is. I appreciate the housing crisis post-floods has gone up many levels.



The Darjeeling Limited

Wes Anderson transports his highly visual, comic/melancholic sensibility to India, where three estranged brothers meet after their father's death and hop a train in a quixotic attempt to heal their spiritual wounds. Amazon Prime.

Riviera | Drama | SBS On Demand

Perfect escapism. Art curator Georgina's life (Julia Stiles) is in tatters when her husband of a year, the billionaire Constantine, dies in a yacht explosion. Fabulous location, divine decor, dripping with money, crime, expensive art and dark secrets. Very addictive.



For a deeper dive into the care-giving and threat systems, and how they play with our head, moods and emotions.

A self-paced online course that will take an hour or two of your time and give a valuable skill to last a lifetime.


Special introductory price $47 ends on 3rd March. Hurry before the price increase!   ** Offer Ends Soon **


What happens when you drink a cockroach infused veggie juice? Can anyone tell me? I was feeling most virtuous (fresh juice instead of coffee, a milestone) and had reached into the back of the drawer to pull out the juice cup (that's how long since it's been used).

Juiced the carrots and apple, added lemon and orange (yuuum!!), swilled it down, enjoying every slow, tangy moment … until there came a crunchy texture in the mouth … an apple core perhaps?

What? What on earth? Jagged on my tongue? Urgghh! Spat it out, and even without my 2-strength Reject Shop glasses on, recognised the tell-tale legs and the core, not of an apple but of the dreaded beast.

Next dilemma: whether to finish the rest of the tantalising liquid or pour it down the sink?

What would you do?

ps, It was only a little cockroach. Well, little to middling. Without the glasses.


LAST DAYS of Self-kindness Bootcamp special price of $47 until 3rd March. Hurry! Don't miss out.

Thanks for opening and reading folks, I greatly appreciate your time. If you've enjoyed this Newsletter, please forward to a friend with an invite to join us. 

Best recovery wishes if you've been affected by the floods.

Love, Shakti


YOGA online. Series of six classes here

Rest is Best and ZipZap Brain Snap here 

Self-Kindness Bootcamp here​​​​

Next issue 1st May 2022. Find previous issues here.