A podcst hosted by Shane fame Alexander

EP001S001 – An Angst-y introduction: We cover Angst, a film about anxiety

An introduction and we chat about anxiety

On this trailer episode of Shower for the Soul, Shane fills us in on what exactly this podcast is about. He also speaks with Karin Gornick, one of the producers of the film, Angst. The film is doing its tour of duty at schools around North America. It focuses on anxiety in young people. Karin and Shane discuss anxiety in the young and old, the medical mumbo-jumbo of what exactly causes anxiety and safe ways of battling it.

Michael Phelps and his battle with anxiety and depression

 

Michael Phelps tweeted in May about his past struggles with anxiety and depression. He tweeted, “questioned whether or not [he] wanted to be alive anymore” before going on to say that therapy “helped save [his] life.”

Another tweet read that the Olympian will be teaming up with Talkspace for Mental Health Awareness Month.  “To let you know that getting help is a sign of strength, not weakness.”

“I can tell you I’ve probably had at least half a dozen depression spells that I’ve gone through,” he said in a 2017 interview with Today’s Jordan Muto. “And the one in 2014, I didn’t want to be alive.”

Ways Phelps fights anxiety and depression

Lion breaths. That’s what Phelps calls his way to combat his anxiety and depression. He and his wife, Nicole Johnson, teach their son, Boomer Phelps. Whenever Boomer gets upset, his parents tell him to take a lion breath. At that point, Boomer inhales as deeply as if he were trying to suck all the oxygen out of the universe, then lets out the breath in one extravagant exhale.

“There are times when I struggle with identity because for so many people, all they see me as is a swimmer,” Michael  says of the passing judgments he receives. “Honestly, that’s when a lion breath does come into play.”

But how can something so simple — say, simple enough to work on a two-year-old — have such an effect on an Olympic medal–winning adult?

It’s partially the push-to-the-limit environment Phelps grew up in, similar to that of Generation Z. “Because my life was always go, go, go, go, on to the next thing,” he says, “I never had a chance to take a breath. So I don’t really know how to do it, I guess.”

In fact, Phelps had learned a practice called “diaphragmatic breathing” — a type of exercise involving deep inhalation and exhalation. This breathing method was found to be successful not just in stress-relief, but also in commanding sustained focus in adults, according to a study published in June 2017 in the journal Frontiers in Psychology.

 

 

 

Helpful links that were mentioned during this episode:

a-plan Coaching
Headspace app
Calm
Rachel Melvin (How Bitches are Made podcast)
Camp Grounded

 

EP001S001 – An Angst-y introduction: We cover Angst, a film about anxiety – listen below.

General Hospital’s Maurice Benard launches State of Mind website

Maurice Benard has been dealing with anxiety

The soap actor, Maurice Benard, has launched his own website called State of Mind. It’s all about dealing with anxiety. This past weekend, the two-time Daytime Emmy award winner launched his new website.

“State of Mind to me means being 100% present, feeling completely at peace inside of you, not letting your thoughts control your life and always looking for ways to be the best that you can be.”  The new site features merchandise in `State of Mind’ t-shirts as well a link to pre-order Maurice’s upcoming memoir, “Nothing General About it.”

Maurice Benard has been been a huge mental health advocate, having been open about his own struggles with mental illness over the years. He wants to use this website to help dispel the stigma of those who battle with it.

Along with a regular vlog that will be posted every Sunday, he offers links to organizations he works with. NAMI (National Alliance of Mental Health),  Didi Hirsch Mental Health Services, and the International Bipolar Foundation. are a few of them.

Maurice Benard explains why he started the site

How you can take care of yourself and others on World Mental Health Day

It’s World Mental Health Day, here’s what you need to know

This year the main aim for World Mental Health Day is suicide prevention. According to World Health Organization, more than 800,000 die by suicide a year, making it the top cause of death among people fifteen to twenty-years old. While that stat only looks at younger people, mental illness doesn’t discriminate, touching the  lives of people in every corner of the society – from the homeless and unemployed to builders and doctors, realty stars and athletes.

Signs your mental health is at risk

According to mental health charity Mind, here ar esome of the common warning signs to look out for:

1. Difficulty speaking
You may struggle to speak, think clearly or make decisions and feel down, upset or tearful.

It may also become difficult to remember certain things or to concentrate on simple tasks or jobs at work.

2. Bad relationship with food
You may have no appetite and be losing weight, or eating too much and gaining weight.

3. Avoiding social events
You might avoid social events and activities you usually enjoy and have no self-confidence or self-esteem.

You might find it difficult to talk about your depression and instead you might cut yourself off from other people.

The more overwhelming your symptoms, the more isolated and lonely you might become.

4. Poor sleeping patterns
You may be finding it difficult to sleep at night and are constantly plagued by anxious thoughts.

On the other hand, you may also be sleeping too much and never want to leave your bed.

This in turn may make you feel tired all the time.

5. Physical aches
You may have physical aches and pains with no obvious cause whatsoever.

Friends and family may notice you’re beginning to move very slowly, or becoming restless and agitated.

6. Addictive behaviour
You may start using more tobacco, alcohol or other drugs than usual.

7. Losing interest in sex
You may feel empty and numb and no longer feel as though you have a sex drive.

8. Self-harming or suicidal behaviour
If you are feeling low, you might use self-harming behaviours to cope with difficult feelings.

Although this might make you feel better in the short term, self-harm can be very dangerous and can make you feel a lot worse in the long term.

When you’re feeling really low and hopeless, you might find yourself thinking about suicide.

Whether you’re only thinking about the idea, or actually considering a plan to end your life, these thoughts can feel difficult to control and very frightening.

If you feel as though some of these warning signs apply to you, you should speak to a doctor immediately.

People tend to wait a long time to report their symptoms but they sooner the issue is reported the sooner people can begin to recover.

Here’s a list of international suicide hotlines. Please call if you feel the need to talk to someone. Don’t forget, you’re not alone.

“Gingers” Prince Harry and Ed Sheeran unite for World Mental Health Day

The dynamic pairing posted a video on Instagram on Thursday to call attention to World Mental Health Day. The clip has the singer visiting the royal at his abode.

“I’m really excited today. I’m going to go and film a thing with Prince Harry,” the Grammy winner said while getting a shave. “He contacted me about doing a charity video with him, which, you know, is going to be good. I’ve long admired him from afar.”

Once Ed arrived, the two got down to business. Ed then told the Duke of Sussex he was “quite passionate” about this cause.

They weren’t fighting the same cause. Funny but yet a very important PSA from Ed and Harry.

 

 

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Both Prince Harry and Ed Sheeran want to ensure that not just today but every day, you look after yourself, your friends and those around you. There’s no need to suffer in silence – share how you’re feeling, ask how someone is doing and listen for the answer. Be willing to ask for help when you need it and know that we are all in this together. #WMHD Check out the accounts below for more resources and support: @Heads_Together @Calmzone @MentalHealthFoundation @CharityNoPanic @SamaritansCharity @YoungMindsUK @GiveUsAShoutInsta @Childline_official @LetsTalkAboutMentalHealth @Jedfoundation @Pandas_UK @Charitysane @MindCharity @TimeToChangeCampaign @RethinkMentalIllness @MentalHealthMates @ActionHappiness @MHFAEngland @DitchTheLabel @TheBlurtFoundation

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Here are my publicity pictures – It was an afternoon of (fake) laughing and drinking

An afternoon of pictures, stout and laughing

Before I get into more of a background to these pictures, let me take this time to thank all that were in involved in such a meaningful, fun day. Biggest shouts to Nikki at HRM Photography, the gents at Gentlemen’s Barber Massonville, and to Fionn MacCool’s for the huge space to create in.

 

Community, conversation and fun

I had been to the venue a few days before I concocted this wacky idea of not only creating a podcast but creating a whole new brand. If I were to do it, I would need to go all in. I would need to get my voice (and face) out there. First step was to do all the obligatory internet stuff to solidify that I’m here, and I’m doing something. Next, was to get professional shots done – ’cause I just love getting my picture taken. I wanted the shots to not only capture me but capture what Shower for the Soul stands for. What it means. I wanted the shots to reflect community, fun, and conversation.

That’s when I thought of doing the shoot at MacCool’s. I stalked the joint again. I knew it’d be perfect. If done well, it’d capture what Shower for the Soul is – and Nikki captured it strikingly! The early afternoon shoot was much easier than I thought it’d be. Beer and fake laughing. My sorta Thursday funday.

I’ll be using these pictures going forward for Shower for the Soul promotional material and episode posters. I’ll try not to over do it, though.

 

 

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And here they are, folks. My podcast publicity shots. Before I get into more of a background to this shoot, let me take this time to thank all that were in involved in such a meaningful, fun day. Biggest shouts to  Nikki at HRM Photography, the gents at Gentlemen's Barber Massonville, and to Fionn MacCool's for the huge space to create in. I had been to the venue a few days before I concocted this wacky idea of not only creating a podcast but creating a whole new brand. I knew if I were to do it, I  would need to go all in. I would need to get my voice (and face) out there. First step was to do all the obligatory internet stuff to solidify that I'm here, and I'm doing something. Next, was to get professional shots done – 'cause I just love getting my picture taken. I wanted the shots to not only capture me but capture what Shower for the Soul stands for. What it means. I wanted the shots to reflect community, fun, and conversation. That's when I thought of doing the shoot at  MacCool's.  I stalked the joint again.  I knew it'd be perfect.  If done well, it'd capture what Shower for the Soul is – and Nikki captured it strikingly! The early afternoon shoot was much easier than I thought it'd be. Beer and fake laughing. My sorta Thursday funday. You will be seeing my mug going forward on a lot of Shower for the Soul promotional material and episode posters. I'll try not to over do it, though. 📸: @hrmphotography.ca ✂️: @Gentlemensbarber 🍻: @fionnmaccoolsnorthlondon #fionnmaccoolsnorthlondon #Gentlemensbarber #hrmphotography #showerforthesoul #podcasts #shanefamealexander

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10 quotes from Keanu Reeves to kick-start your week

Keanu Reeves is legend

Keanu Reeves is a wonderful soul. And if you’re aware of what he has battled in life, you will love him even more. Here are 10 quotes from the acting legend to help you kick-off your week:

  • Every struggle in your life has shaped you into the person you are today. Be thankful for the hard times, they can only make you stronger.
  • It is incredibly empowering to know that your future is in your hands.
  • Grief changes shape but it never ends.
  • Try to be wrong once in a while, it’ll do your ego good.
  • Our saving grace! Um, as a species [humans] we can be pretty warm and fuzzy. But maybe for this, it’s adaptability, or the heart and soul. We’re not all that bad. I don’t really know!
  • Multi-culture is the real culture of the world — a pure race doesn’t exist.
  • Energy can’t be created or destroyed, and energy flows. It must be in a direction, with some kind of internal, emotive, spiritual direction. It must have some effect somewhere.
  • The simple act of paying attention can take you a long way.
  • Sure I believe in God and the Devil, but they don’t have to have pitchforks and a long white beard.
  • I will always be in love with love.

As a child, Keanu Reeves lived in Toronto with his mother

Check out the video to find out more about Keanu Reeves biography and life challenges.

How New Kids’ `Tonight’ became an important track in my budding radio career

 

It happened one morning on CFTR radio

As I get closer to the first episode dropping, I’m looking back to what truly brought me here. I wasn’t the biggest NKTOB fan but heir track `Tonight’ is a very important piece to my journey.
It’s the first song I voiced over in a real radio station. I was there visiting my radio mentor and buddy, Tom Rivers, He fronted the top rated morning show.

While I was doing bits along with Tom that morning, he asked me to introduce the new New Kids track and hint a concert announcement. I was nervous as hell, knowing this would be my first time being a real radio disk jockey. If I were playing radio in my room, no problem. I would know exactly what to say. But this was C-F-T-R. THE radio station for morning radio and THE radio station all my friends listened to.
Tom wrote the script and told me where to breath and follow my `DJ instincts’. He told me when I hear the music, I’ll know where to shut up and where to elaborate words.
All this prep for a song that only had a 15 second intro.
All the nerves disappeared as soon as I turned on the microphone. I later learned most radio announcers are the same. Stumbling, incoherent folks off-air. Poets on-air.

Word for word, pause for pause, tone for tone, this is exactly what I said that morning on CFTR.

 

Angst is a very important film to check out

Angst is a new film about anxiety

During my morning scroll through Instagram I noticed that my old high school, Toronto Waldorf School will be screening a new film this weekend. The film   or project – is very interesting, here’s why:

 

The Angst project is an IndieFlix Original documentary and series designed to raise awareness around anxiety and mental health with an emphasis on youth and families throughout the world. Our goal specifically is to help people identify and understand the symptoms of anxiety and encourage them to reach out for help. Angst will be screened in schools, communities and theaters around the world. The film, VR experience (the Panic Attack) and corresponding materials provide tools, resources and hope. AngstMovie.com

 

The producer of Angst will be on the show!

I’ll be speaking with the producer from the film on the trailer episode of the podcast. I’m excited to see what Karin Gornick will share with us. If you have any questions for Karin, please shoot me a note. Stay tuned!

Our Instagram game is on point

You really need to check out the our new Instagram

Our Instagram has been up for a week and it’s getting   modest attention. With the social media page I want to create a vibe. Well thought-out content with inspiring, thought provoking posts.  The   Check out our Insta-stories for cellphone wallpapers. I post behind-the-scenes videos that are usually off the grid of the regular Instagram format. There’s daily quotes to help you get through the day and of course the obligatory shameless self-promotion.

If you have a minute, cruise over to the account and take a peak. Follow us and we’ll follow back. Find us here.

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I could work-in a cool way to remind you to listen to my podcast October 30, but this is wholeheartedly something everyone needs to do more. Including me. Take the time to truly listen to the people you're speaking with today. Avoid distractions, plug yourself out from everything else for that short moment and give your all to the person that's expressing themselves to you. It's natural to want to interrupt, loose focus. Be there. In the moment. Being in the moment is something I'm learning to do now. Are we ever just there? It's something I'm working on. Something we can work on together. Just be there. #listening #communication #beinthemoment #podcasts #selflove #shanefamealexander #showerforthesoul

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It’s officially Fall 2019 and it’s time to kick-in the fall playlist

First duty on the second day of fall is to make a playlist

This evening I created a fall playlist. Here’s why:

My favourite seasons aren’t winter or summer. My favourite seasons are fall and spring.  I appreciate fall because it’s time to box away the summertime Hip Hop tracks in favour of colder, smokier, soulful-er, lovelier, low tempo tracks. It’s time for the fall playlist.

Most of the tracks I chose for the playlist are songs that I bonded with during the fall. I listened to The Cure’s “Pictures of You” on the bus on the way home from work one rainy September evening. I played the track over and over again. It soon became one of my all time favourite tracks.  I bought Bon Iver’s album in the fall and at the time, “Skinny Love” was my jam. “Any Time, Any Place” by Janet just reeks fallen leaves and lower-teen temperatures. “Time to Pretend” was another one of my jams right around Halloween, 2008. The bond I have with songs is one thing I have never broken. I still honour our connection and how we met. Most people forget where they were when they first heard a certain song, but I keep those memories close to  the vest. Closer than some friendships, in fact. I know, that might sound weird but it’s the memory connected to the song that built other bonds. Real life bonds.

I will chat about my bond with Hip Hop and all types of music during the first season of the show. If you have any memories to share or would like to give your opinion on our relationships with music, feel free to give me a shout.

 Here’s the Shower for the Soul (official) fall playlist

The playlist is now available on Spotify. Feel free to download, share, and follow the channel for more playlists. I’ll be making many more. And always, let me know what you think!