Archive for the 'Storytelling' Category

New Online Creative Caregiving Guide

NCCA Creative Caregiving Guide

Imagine a world where every caregiving act for adults with alzheimer’s disease and related cognitive disorders contributes to quality days for both the caregiver and their care partner.

The public is invited to utilize FREE video clips and curriculum materials developed by the National Center for Creative Aging to facilitate cognition, self-expression, movement and social connection in adults living with Alzheimer’s disease and related cognitive disorders.*

The guide is constantly expanding with lessons for additional languages and cultures.

http://creativecaregiving.creativeaging.org/

* Note from Ping Ho, MA, MPH – Founding Director of UCLArts and Healing:

The lessons are applicable to other populations such as special needs and young children.

Re-Write Your Life

Mindset Book 3

A New York Times blog by Tara Parker-Pope offers examples of studies that show how changing your narrative can change the trajectory of your life.   Scroll down to see the blog.

The examples that she cites suggest that changing one’s story contributes to a growth mindset that is associated with learning and achievement.

According to Carol Dweck, of the Stanford University Department of Psychology, those with growth mindsets seek challenges for an opportunity to learn and those with fixed mindsets of intelligence avoid challenges that lead to self-judgment.

Research from Dweck’s lab has shown that exposure to even simple messages (e.g., “You must have tried really hard”) can have a profound effect on academic performance, and that parental messages heard by children from ages 1-3 determine their mindsets by ages 7-8.

When we re-write our stories, not only do we change our mindsets, but also we visualize new outcomes, which register in the brain as if real, hardwire us for new behavior, and can even change our memory of past events.

Click here to view a TED Talk by Carol Dweck.

Click here if you are interested in a teleseminar on re-writing your life, which will enable participation from far and near from the comfort of home.

Blog post by Tara Parker-Pope

The scientific research on the benefits of so-called expressive writing is surprisingly vast. Studies have shown that writing about oneself and personal experiences can improve mood disorders, help reduce symptoms among cancer patients, improve a person’s health after a heart attack, reduce doctor visits and even boost memory.

Now researchers are studying whether the power of writing — and then rewriting — your personal story can lead to behavioral changes and improve happiness.

The concept is based on the idea that we all have a personal narrative that shapes our view of the world and ourselves. But sometimes our inner voice doesn’t get it completely right. Some researchers believe that by writing and then editing our own stories, we can change our perceptions of ourselves and identify obstacles that stand in the way of better health.  Read More… Continue reading ‘Re-Write Your Life’

Stories Can Drive Social Change – We Want Yours

animal conference FINAL_centered_imagePURPLE

On February 7, 2015, a cardiologist, integrative veterinarian, author and storyteller shared their personal, transformational stories of healing choices and end-of-life care.  They spoke about the elephant in the room.  The experience was profound for everyone.

Why did we organize this program?  My experience of the effectiveness of holistic treatment options in animal care made me wonder whypeople can’t have these options.  As integrative veterinary medicine involves less regulation, I wondered if exposure to these practices could motivate PET OWNERS to drive the HUMAN integrative medicine movement through their stories and advocacy.

The other reason that I organized this program is because the therapeutic uses of the arts are a branch of integrative medicine, and I saw an opportunity to demonstrate the relevance of the arts in health policy and practices.  Time and again we see in our community writing programs the power of stories to elicit emotions and facilitate meaningful dialogue.

We encourage you to add your voice to the movement for choices in healing and more humane approaches to end-of-life care.  Your story can make a difference.  If you have one to share, please send it to info@uclartsandhealing.org.  We are also collecting them on behalf of Dr. Richard Palmquist, who will post them on the website of the American Holistic Veterinary Medical Foundation in order to fuel the proliferation of research.  As he noted in his presentation, when patients hear that “there is no evidence” for a particular treatment, it does not necessarily mean that things do not work; it means that there is no research to support the intervention.

Some resources for your preparing your story:

Barbara Clark will be teaching a workshop on Finding Meaning in Love and Loss as a follow up to this program, where you will learn how to craft an effective story that is imbued with meaning.  You will leave with a complete story imbued with meaning for yourself and your audience.Click here for details.

Barbara Abercrombie’s blog that includes writing tips and exercises: www.BarbaraAbercrombie.com.

Special Message from Richard Palmquist, DVM:

If you have a story involving the benefits of integrative veterinary care, please consider writing it and sending it to me at this email address, cahdogcat@aol.com. These stories are incredibly helpful for those trapped in a disease cycle and having nowhere to turn. Upon discovering one successful outcome, a dedicated animal guardian may then find the path to assist their friend in recovering or improving its state of health.

The AHVMF, the American Holistic Veterinary Medical Foundation, at www.AHVMF.org is dedicated to expanding humane research and education in integrative and holistic veterinary medicine. Through our work we are supporting important steps to improve health care options for both people and animals. To see how we use these stories go to our website and look at the “Inspiring Stories” and “Animal Teachers” links.

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The following are links to books from our Feb. 7 event: Love and Loss: The Power of Stories in Healing Choices and End-of-Life Care

Dr. Barbara Natterson-Horowitz’s website: www.zoobiquity.com.

Link to her book: Zoobiquity: The Astonishing Connection Between Human and Animal Health  http://www.amazon.com/Zoobiquity-Astonishing-Connection-Between-Animal/dp/0307477436.

Barbara Abercrombie’s blog that includes writing tips and exercises: www.BarbaraAbercrombie.com.
Link to her book: Cherished: 21 Writers on Animals They Have Loved and Lost  http://www.amazon.com/Cherished-Writers-Animals-They-Loved/dp/1577319575/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1423898820&sr=1-2&keywords=cherished   All royalties will be donated to Best Friends Animal Society.  Includes stories by Anne Lamott, Jane Smiley, Jacqueline Winspear, Carolyn See, Mark Doty, and more.

(Barbara Abercrombie’s husband Robert Adams died on February 10th.)

Dr. Richard Palmquist’s Centinela Animal Hospital website: www.LovAPet.com.

Link to his book: Releasing Your Pet’s Hidden Health Potential  http://www.amazon.com/Releasing-Your-Hidden-Health-Potential/dp/1449908446/ref=sr_1_fkmr0_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1423899576&sr=1-1-fkmr0&keywords=palmquist+unleashing+your

Ping Ho, Founding Director, UCLArts and Healing

Wesleyan student wins award at College National Poetry Slam and bears witness to societal repression of women

Lily Myers, a student at Wesleyan University, performed “Shrinking Women” at the 2013 College National Poetry Slam Invitational at Barnard College and was awarded with Best Love Poem at the competition.  Her poem, which has gone viral,  passionately and movingly articulates in three minutes the societal repression of women and the power of spoken word poetry to bear witness to truth.  Finger snapping heard in the background replaces applause in the slam poetry world, so we can hear more.

Excerpt from the Huffington Post:

“Women in my family have been shrinking for decades,” declares Lily Myers.

Her slam poem, “Shrinking Women,” which won Best Love Poem at the 2013 College Unions Poetry Slam Invitational in April, perfectly expresses the pressure women feel to take up less and less space, to be quiet, to be small and to eat sparingly.

She explains the difference between the ways men and women are socialized to her brother:

You have been taught to grow out, I have been taught to grow in. You learn from our father how to emit, how to produce, to roll each thought off your tongue with confidence. You used to lose your voice every other week from shouting so much. I learned to absorb. I took lessons from our mother in creating space around myself. I learned to read the knots in her forehead while the guys went out for oysters.

Founder of Invisible People captures stories of the homeless for social change, using only social media and iphone

Caution: Some content may be offensive. Our hope is you’ll get mad enough to do something. InvisiblePeople.tv

Mark Horvath refers to himself as “Invisible People Founder, Chief Evangelistic Officer, Do-Gooder and Loud Mouth”.  Since its launch in November 2008, Invisible People has leveraged the power of video and the massive reach of social media to share the compelling, gritty, and unfiltered stories of homeless people from Los Angeles to Washington, D.C. The vlog (video blog) gets up close and personal with veterans, mothers, children, layoff victims and others who have been forced onto the streets by a variety of circumstances. A former Hollywood producer,  Mark took to the streets to give the homeless a voice, after becoming homeless himself.

Mark was a featured panelist at a UCLA presentation on Transmedia Storytelling for Good on September 23, 2013.  He is an inspiring, dynamic, and larger-than-life character who interviews homeless people and captures them on video.  He likes to ask: What would your three wishes be? If he gets into an interesting conversation with someone online, he invites them to coffee to build the conversation and develop some trust before asking permission to film them.  He says that photo releases don’t help build relationships.  After he meets with people, he gives them a business card and promises them that at any point if they want their video removed, he will remove it.

Mark captured such a compelling interview with a homeless woman in Great Britain (where she explains that she can’t find work because of homeless-related medical condition but she doesn’t qualify for assistance because she isn’t pregnant and so forth) that attracted so many viewers that it ultimately led to a revamping of British homeless policy.  He says that when he walks the streets, real homeless people will take his socks, gladly.

According to Mark, we over-think stuff when it comes to capturing stories on film; that we think we need special equipment to do the job. He launched his successful campaign with $45, a laptop and an iphone.  “Just do it.,”  he says.  He calls this kind of work “life casting” or “reality twittering” and believes that authenticity replaces production values.  Tumblr syncs to Twitter and Facebook, and so on.  That is the concept behind Transmedia storytelling.  He uses Instagram to link to all the other social media platforms.  He says to post where your people use the media.  He thinks that social media will turn into cable TV and suggests purchasing all possible user names as soon as possible.  His website allows homeless people to post comments and have a voice.

For more information, see: http://invisiblepeople.tv/blog/ – This link has clips of his interviews with homeless people.  To see some of his other blog posts, go to http://www.huffingtonpost.com/mark-horvath/.

Transmedia Storytelling for Good, was an innovative panel presentation at UCLA on 9/23/13 that demonstrated ways to promote health, create social change, and educate through storytelling via multiple social media channels.  The event was sponsored by the UCLA Department of Community Health Sciences and MPH for Health Professionals Program, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health,  Weinreich Communications, and  Transmedia for Good SoCal29. 

Click here to view the panel presentation.
Mark was the second presenter.

Most of the information in this blog post was contributed by Ping Ho, MA, MPH – Founding Director of UCLArts and Healing, who attended the panel presentation.