Why the view of #Acropolis and #Athens sightseeing are #Moodmaking – Greek to me !

Could the Cradle of Western Civilization have a special brain effect to humanity  through Ages?

Does the view of such a monument, or a visit on the sacred hill alter our minds? And How Happy as an experience is that for a Traveler?

Find out on our Greek to me ! exclusive article 

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Meet The Inspired #Tarot Of #Love, In the heart of #Athens – Greek to me !

“The tarot of unseen power puts in order the thoughts, cleans up the horizon and studies the power which defines the destiny, targets and facilitates the communication with the highest (sublime) self ”

Lydia Venieri…

Go to our Greek to me ! article on greek2m.org Newsblog 

Invest in relationships… What makes a good life? Lessons from the longest study on #happiness 

 

The clearest message that we get from this 75-year study is this:

Good relationships keep us happier and healthier. Period.

Over and over, over these 75 years, our study has shown that the people who fared the best were the people who leaned in to relationships, with family, with friends, with community.

So what about you? Let’s say you’re 25, or you’re 40, or you’re 60. What might leaning in to relationships even look like?

The possibilities are practically endless. It might be something as simple as replacing screen time with people time, or livening up a stale relationship by doing something new together, long walks or date nights, or reaching out to that family member who you haven’t spoken to in years…  

Robert J. Waldinger (born 1951) is an American psychiatrist and Professor at Harvard Medical School. He is known for his  TED talks about his findings from the unique 75-year-long Harvard study on adult happiness.

Waldinger is the current Director of the Laboratory of Adult Development at Massachusetts General Hospital, a longitudinal study that has tracked the health and mental well-being of a group of 724 American men for 76 years.

 

Stay with us 24/7

 

Go to our Romantic Greece Special Page by Greek2m

This is Greek to me !

greek2m.org 

Change your Brain in Greece! the Blue Space Effect

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For those who might have wondered why Greece does immediately make us happy , the reasons are one by one identified and proved by science. Blue space effect is of the primary ones . And it’s obvious.  In sight and in practice

It is  the impact of the sea, rivers, lakes on our happiness and well-being that is referred to as blue space and is being more and more often researched nowadays by neuro-scientists and psychologists

 Wallace J. Nichols, a marine biologist, has discussed and published the different ways bodies of water really can positively affect us and many psychologists have researched how just having blue space in front of you can boost your mental health.

Go to our Greek to me ! article on our Newsblog 

Imagine #Walking in this place to boost your #mood?  The #moodhacking tips to #Walk2Happiness  

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#Sunset in #Lesvos Photo by Manolis Binos in #Vatera. theotheraegean

Study Shows a 50-Minute Walk in Nature Beats Urban Walk for Mood and Memory

  • 50-minute walk

Taking a walking break in a nearby park beats walking the sidewalks. This study of 60 participants found decreased anxiety,rumination and negative affect for the subjects who took a walk in a nature park. They also had increased working memory performance and preservation of positive affect.

The walk in the park both helped their mood and got them away from negative thoughts. Taking a 50-minute walk in an urban setting did not have these benefits.

90-Minute Walk in Nature Decreased Rumination – Urban Walk Did Not

Do you constantly rehash a negative experience or have trouble getting a problem out of your mind? Rumination is a destructive mental habit that is associated with risk of depression.

  • 90-minute walk

The Stanford researchers found that a 90-minute walk in a natural setting decreased self-reported rumination. They went further to measure this with a brain scan of neural activity in the subgenual prefrontal cortex (sgPFC), which is associated with rumination.

They found decreased activity in this brain area, confirming the self-reported results.

Walking in an urban environment did not decrease self-reported rumination or activity in the sgPFC.

“Accessible natural areas within urban contexts may be a critical resource for mental health in our rapidly urbanizing world,” the study concludes.

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a walk in the chestnut forest, in Agiassos, Lesvos, Photos by Spyros Pavlis, The other Aegean, fb

 

Walking in a Park Affects Brain Differently From Walking in Urban Zone

Does your brain operate differently when walking in a green space compared to an urban area?

  • the 25-minute walk

A study in Edinburgh measured how subjects’ brains reacted. They wore a mobile EEG recorder while taking a 25-minute walk through three different environments. Their walk took them first through a busy shopping zone, then into a green space, and then into a busy commercial zone.

Analysis of the brain activity showed evidence of lower frustration, engagement and arousal, and higher meditation when moving into the green space zone; and higher engagement when moving out of it.

It may be great for your mood and mental functioning to include green space along your walking routes.

The Japanese Forest Bathing

  • the 15-minute walk

The Japanese encourage Shinrin-yoku or “forest bathing” to reduce stress and refresh the mind. They have studies that showed clinical measures of reduced stress when walking for 15 minutes in a forested park as well as spending 15 minutes viewing the forest.

A small study published in 2010 compared salivary cortisol, blood pressure, pulse rate, and heart rate variability after subjects walked in a forest area for about 15 minutes and spent 15 minutes viewing it, compared with doing the same in a city environment.

The subjects who walked in the forest had lower concentrations of cortisol (which is associated with stress), lower pulse rate,lower blood pressure, greater parasympathetic nerve activity, and lower sympathetic nerve activity compared with their measurements after walking in city environments.

The research was repeated with a larger cohort of 420 subjects. Published in 2011, this study found

  • a 12.4% decrease in cortisol level,
  • 7.0% decrease in sympathetic nervous activity,
  • 1.4% decrease in systolic blood pressure,
  • and 5.8% decrease in heart rate when either walking or sitting in a forest environment.
  • Parasympathetic nerve activity increased by 55.0%, indicating a relaxed state.

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Colors of #autumn in #Lesvos! Photo by Giorgos Pantas, by Lesvos the other Aegean

What a chance! An island walk

Taking a 30-Minute Easy (Park/Island) Walk

by Wendy Bumgardner, a walking expert and certified marathon coach 
1. Find a Green Space: Look around your area for a park that includes trees and greenery. Even a small space can be beneficial. Use online maps and mapping apps to quickly spot parks nearby (they are usually displayed in green). If only a small area is available, include it on your walk and take a pause there.

2. Wear the Right Gear: Wear clothing that doesn’t restrict good walking form. This walk will be at an easy pace, so you could wear any shoes, but athletic walking shoes are best.

If you will be walking on a natural trail through the park, you may wish to wear trail shoes for better traction. If it has an uneven surface, you may want to use trekking poles for better balance.

3. Screens Down and Eyes Forward: You need to put away the cell phone and take out the earbuds for this walk. You will focus on the sights and sounds of the natural environment. Start with standing up and check your walking posture so you will be able to breathe fully and deeply. Good posture with head up, chin level and eyes forward will focus your attention on the natural environment.

4. Ease Into Your Walk: This walk will be at an overall easy pace. Walk at an easy pace that feels comfortable. Fall into a natural pace that at your body’s own rhythm. This may be faster or slower on different days.

5. Absorb the Sights, Sounds and Sensations Around You: Open up all of your senses as you enter the park or green space. What are you seeing? What do you hear? What smells do you detect? What do you feel on your skin and through the soles of your feet?

6. Take a Pause: Plan a stop during your walk to sit or stand and deeply observe a green space. Locate a park bench or shaded area where you have a good view of greenery. Look at the pattern of the leaves and branches against the sky. Look for flowers, birds, insects and squirrels. See the work of the wind, rain and sun on the plants around you. Observe the ground – rocks, soil, grasses, puddles. Listen for natural sounds as well as the sounds of human activity. Reach out and feel a leaf or stone.

7. Continue Your Walk: Resume your walk. You may take a new path back to your starting point or repeat the same route. You can repeat loops and see how you will detect something new each time. Make a game of finding something new each time.

8. Reflect on Your Observations: Contemplate what you have observed. How does the natural environment affect you? What memories were stirred? What new ideas or plans sprung to mind?

9. Finish and Stretch: Finish your walk and wind down with a simple stretching routine.

10. Plan Your Next Park Walk: Repeating the same walk can be beneficial, but you may also want variety. Check for other parks, green spaces and trails to explore.

 

Don’t miss our Greece make up your mood Special Page on Greek to me 

Aricle Source about.com

 

Top #destination of a lifetime, #Atlantis bookshop in #Santorini, best in the world by National Geographic

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According to the National Geographic list of the top 10 bookstores in the world published in the book Destinations of a Lifetime, Atlantis Books in Santorini is the best bookstore in the world.

You will find it on the island, in Oia, into the side of a cliff , situated below street level, making it feel like you’re descending into a secret literature stoa. Atlantis Books was opened in 2004 by expats from the US, England, and Cyprus, who fell in love with Santorini and decided to stay.

“We found an empty building facing the sunset, drank some whiskey and signed a lease. We found a dog and cat, opened a bank account, applied for a business license, found some friends, built the shelves, landed a boat on the terrace and filled the place with books.” , their website writes.

The store has hosted readings on the terrace, bookbinding classes, and food and film festivals, National Geographic notes

Following Atlantis bookstore, in the list of 10 bookstores you should visit in your lifetime, come

Walking in Nature Can Change Your Brain

New research suggests that getting out into nature can help city dwellers — and others — improve their moods.

Living in the city can raise your stress levels and risk of depression, but finding even a little urban green space can make a big difference.

New research from Stanford University suggests that spending a little time in nature actually changes your brain activity, leading to less anxiety. As Gretchen Reynolds reports in the New York Times, Gregory Bratman, a graduate student at the Emmett Interdisciplinary Program in Environment and Resources at Stanford, measured the effect of a 90-minute nature hike on 38 adult city dwellers and found that brain activity in their subgenual prefrontal cortex, an area of the brain focused on “morbid rumination,” was lower than those who walked along a nearby highway.

Those who experienced a more natural environment were less likely to dwell on the negative aspects of their lives, Reynolds reported. The results suggest that getting out into nature can be an simple way to improve the moods of urban residents.

For more on the effect nature can have on your moods, see “Nature Quest”

 

Visit also , our Relax in Greece greek2m.org Special Page

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Don’t miss our Happiness in Greece greek2m.org Page

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photos Lesvos, March 2016, by I LOVE LESVOS, fb

Source: Walking in Nature Can Change Your Brain, experiencelife.com

Plant yourself a good mood garden, grab, consume and treat yourself from bad mood

Ward off the blues with a backyard filled with stress relieving, energizing plants for eating and aromatherapy

Plant yourself a good-mood garden, and get the benefits not just of a little garden therapy but of all the healthy foods linked to lower rates of depression.

Certain vegetables and herbs are rich in antidepressant compounds and minerals that can do everything from taking the edge off a bad day to curing full-blown depression.

Here’s a guide to get you started—10 of the most potent antidepressant foods and herbs and how to grow them anywhere.

Go to article

Make Your Relationship Great in Romantic Greece

 

#Greece has been named the Fifth Most #Romantic Destination in the World according to a recent 2017 study, while being also one of the most flirtatious places worldwide according to travelers’ polls.  

While Science provides us the keys to upgrade our relations at best today,  consider “investing” in your relationship on your holiday trip to Greece.

Enjoy your romantic moments in Greece, when nature, the sunrise or sunset ,the sea, and the whole landscape make up the most picturesque surround to Upgrade your Relationship to being More Great .

 

Happy couples see the positives, says Psychology Today . They provide support and take the focus off the partner

They exchange expressions of affection , openly or more discreetly  , by words or even eye-hugs… .

When the world around you shows its affection too, by creating the most romantic landscapes on these moments, while in Greece, invest in these moments , and Make Your Relationship Great on your trip in Greece

 

Besides, to find Why Love Was Born In Greece…

Visit our Greek to me ! Romantic Greece Special Page,

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Romantic Greece by Greek2m.org

 

Modern Science  has so many tips and information about Making A Great Relationship today.

Manage Your Energy, Not Your Time

“I never have enough time”. Ironically, you would be an even better performer if you invested your energy, not your time, writes Margaret Beaton on her beatonexecutivecoaching site

In researching how to help a seriously stressed corporate executive, the Executive Coach  reveals that the old paradigm of being a better time manager is less helpful than a new way of thinking, namely managing your energy.
slide1-624x468The table on the left helps us see that high performance, good health and happiness are more likely to be found by focusing on skilful investment of energy, Margaret Beacon makes clear .

 

Time management advisers say ‘switch off the email and check it once every hour’. Sure, I agree that’s smart time management, but it’s not a fundamental approach. It’s a well-proven part of the old paradigm.

 

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The new paradigm: Manage your energy, not your time

The beauty of this way of thinking is that you own and control your energy. As an executive, it’s not at the beck and call of others to nearly the same degree as your time.

This thought leads to new paradigm as the table above outlines. Several of the ideas in the right hand column are quite the opposite of we have been taught to believe, e.g. seeking, not avoiding stress; and focusing on purpose rather than reward.

“Energy, not time, is the fundamental currency of high performance”. and is now seen by the experts as the ‘power of full engagement’ .

“Every one of our thoughts, emotions, and behaviors has an energy consequence. The ultimate measure of our lives is not how much time we spend on the planet, but rather how much energy we invest in the time we have.”

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To make maximum use of managing energy, rather than time, you must draw on four separate, but related sources of energy: physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual

To perform at your best, you must consciously and skillfully manage every aspect of our human sources of energy, namely physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual. These sources work together; if one is absent or low, the others are impaired. As an executive, like everyone, you need to strive to be whole person. You can’t fire on only two or three cylinders.

 

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You must balance energy consumption with energy renewal, because energy capacity diminishes with both over- and under-use

We rarely count our energy; there no energy watch on your wrist or energy alarm clock like there is with time. Energy is finite and you should not assume that your energy is limitless. You need to find ways to recharge your battery. Think of your executive life as a series of sprints between which you recover, not as a marathon.

You must push beyond your normal limits to build energy capacity; you must train in the same way as top athletes do

Stress is a gift if sensibly managed. It is a key to growth. Think of pushing your muscles hard while exercising to train them; you must push yourself on all four energy fronts to build your full capacity.

 

You need rituals for managing energy to be capable of sustained, all-round high performance

slide11-300x225Humans are creatures of habit. As a result most change initiatives are less than fully successful
because you have to re-learn and do things differently.

To be successful in this you need new routines that become the your new habit. Make these rituals. Plan the day at the start or the z
night before. Get home after work prepared for the most important conversation of the day–with your partner. Never allow a meeting to start with a clear agenda and an agreed hard stop time.

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Energy is the common denominator in all dimensions of our lives

The table depicts the dynamics of energy: Your physical energy capacity from high at the top to low at the bottom. And your emotional capacity from negative on the left hand side to positive on the right.

Into which quadrant do you fall most of the time? If it is the top right, you need to understand why you are successful in nurturing and investing your energy for high all-round performance.

If you are in one of the other three quadrants for most of your life, then start today to learn to manage your energy, not your time. And become a more fulfilled, more productive, happier person.

 

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You Have 25,000 Mornings As An Adult; Here’s How To Not Waste Them

If you take a moment to think about it, you’ll probably realise that you are better at doing certain tasks at certain times lifehack.org suggests For example, my creative energy is highest in the morning, so that’s when I do my writing each day.

By comparison it could be wise to  I block out  afternoons for interviews, phone calls, and emails. You don’t need your creative energy to be high for those tasks, so that’s the best time for me to get them done.

Use the morning to do what’s important rather than responding to what is “urgent”.

What type of energy do you have in the morning? What task is that energy best suited for?

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The science of stamina has advanced to the point where individuals, teams, and whole organizations can, with some straightforward interventions, significantly increase their capacity to get things done, according to the recent Harvard Review article .Don’t miss it

Source: Manage Your Energy, Not Your Time

This is Why Traveling Solo in Greece empowers your inner strength 

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Wandering through the clusters of beautiful white and blue buildings that make up the Greek Isles is an ideal solo activity. You can also lounge on the beach or go for a boat tour to see the surrounding islands.
wrote businessinsider recently, picking Greece as one of  the best places to travel alone

 

People who travel solo possess great mental strength, and this is one thing all solo travelers have in common . in the “People Who Travel Solo All Share This Admirable Characteristic” article by trekeffect the editor explains how traveling frees the mind as well as it teaches the traveler to celebrate every breath.

Increased mental strength: the biggest benefit of solo travel

One of the biggest upsides of traveling alone is the power it holds to stimulate psychological growth. After returning from a major solo trip, you are going to feel like your life has changed for the better. Not only will you come back home with a ton of new friends and pleasant memories, but you’ll also become wiser, smarter and mentally stronger.

They can have a blast even when nobody’s around

 You are going to be tremendously empowered, once you realize that you’re capable of having a swell time without relying on somebody else to either approve of your choices or generate ideas for your activities. As a matter of fact, you may even prefer to spend more time by yourself than be enslaved to the choices of others. After all, people who travel solo don’t depend on anyone for a good time.

Traveling alone breeds enlightenment

When you venture by your lonesome into the unknown, your senses will be in overdrive. Humans are in general never more perceptive than when they are deeply involved with the unfamiliar – it is a survival mechanism.

Therefore, solo travel lets you recognize and absorb far more than you would if you go with a bunch of companions. You sense, learn and feel more than you would ever expect.

Individual trips help you shed naïveté about the globe, broadening your perspectives while making you more aware keenly of your idiosyncrasies and vulnerabilities.

People who travel solo are self-reliant and adaptable

Being responsible solely for your enjoyment and well-being helps develop self-reliance. When you travel for a significant amount of time, you are likely to bump into obstacle and difficulties. And what matters is not whether you face them, but how you overcome these challenges.

They know how to communicate effectively with others

There are cultural differences and language barriers that you need to overcome with a little patience and ingenuity, as you travel solo. But, this will create a positive effect of making you a whole more willing meet others halfway, whether at home or abroad

They know they can trust themselves

 It’s all down to you where you will stay, how you will finance the trip, what you will do, and where you will go. Travel entails making plenty of choices, so having the utter freedom to make them all on your own will compel you to develop a self-image as a competent and trustworthy person.

 

Travel solo increases self-awareness and reduces stress

Make no mistake about it – there will be times you’ll feel extremely lonely, as you travel solo. Even if you’re surrounded completely by people, loneliness can sometimes creep in, especially if you’re in places where communication is difficult and no one speaks your native tongue.

The experience, however, will also help you understand the important difference between feeling alone and being alone.

Loneliness and solitude aren’t the same. Loneliness depletes the spirit as well as increases your feelings of isolation. Solitude, on the other hand, increases your self-awareness and ultimately makes you feel more connected with the whole world. We’re never truly alone, but it is fairly difficult to recognize it, without the ample amount of time to reflect on it.

Humans are essentially social creatures, and the truth is we can’t survive without the presence of other individuals. But, in seeking out company, we sometimes fail to recognize the merits of solitude.

According to recent research, mindfulness meditation – or the practice of intently focusing on the present – can significantly decrease anxiety, as it helps reduce cortisol – a stress hormone.

The increased awareness that comes with solo travel, coupled with the excitement of new fun experiences, focuses unconsciously your mind on the present.

Ultimately, you start to let go of the past together with the regrets and pain that usually come with it.  And at the same time, you stop worrying much about your future.

Vacation Health Benefits Including Changing Your Brain, Genes – Dr. Axe

For starters, just planning a vacation can actually boost happiness levels. Whether it’s from the anticipation of the unknown or the excitement of planning time away, getting ready for a holiday can increase happiness in participants of one study for about 8 weeks before going away. (3)

But the real magic occurs when you vacation. Being in a new environment, particularly abroad, affects how our neural pathways respond to things – also known asneuroplasticity – and can make us more creative. When we’re in our normal, day-to-day lives, our brains can go on autopilot: they know how things work and where places are. But when our brains are exposed to new sounds, tastes and cultures, different synapses fire off in your brain, revitalizing our minds and encouraging us to try new things, if only because you’ll have to. (4)

Maybe you’re not too keen on getting in touch with your creative side. Going on vacation will help you physically, too. The Framingham Heart Study, which began in 1948 and is still going strong, found that women who took vacations just once every six years were nearly 8 times as likely to have a heart attack than those who took one at least every two years. (5)

Vacation health benefits can change your health on a genetic level, according to science.

A recent study published in Translational Psychiatry found that both taking a vacation and meditating actually make an impact on our molecular networks. The study followed 94 healthy women between the ages of 30 to 60 years old. They all stayed at the same resort, with half simply on vacation and the other half following a meditation training program. To better understand the “meditation effect,” the scientists behind the study also followed a group of 30 experienced meditators also staying at the retreat the same week. (1)

The research team looked at changes in 20,000 genes to figure out which genes changed during and after the resort trip. The results showed that spending a week at the resort significantly changed the molecular network patterns of participants in all the groups — the vacationers, the beginner meditators and the experienced meditators.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, the most notable gene activity was in those areas relating to stress response and immune function. And a month after the experience was over, those newbie meditators were riding the relaxation wave with fewer symptoms of depression alongside visible stress relief compared to the non-meditating vacationers.

Essentially, while it seems logical that taking a vacation or engaging in heavy meditation would reduce stress, this is one of the first times that researchers have been able to pinpoint large changes in the body’s genes in a short amount of time.

 

Source: Vacation Health Benefits Including Changing Your Brain, Genes – Dr. Axe