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Reflections, a Book is Born

Reflections

May 26 was a big day for me, it was the day Reflections got released. It is 3 years of my life that has gone into it and the book is about the last seven critical months in my husbands’ life. He was diagnosed with cancer in July 2017 and died in February 2018.  And yet it is a book of hope, healing, how to face fears and not be afraid to live life in full, no matter what. So to honor him and the book that is based on his blogs during those months, here is a background to his life.

Songwriter and Composer

Brian Hobbs, a songwriter and composer was dedicated to music most of his life. He wrote both music and lyrics in many different genres from R&B, funk, jazz, big band, instrumental, bossa, pop, country and even musicals. He was an encyclopedia when it came to early twentieth century music and his first inspiration was George and Ira Gershwin.

When Brian moved to Sweden he became the person to go to when it came to lyrics, but he also made quite a few instrumental albums on his own and he loved doing that. He found his perfect writing partner in Andreas Aleman and together they wrote Andreas four albums.

Brian also had songs released in Japan and Spain and many other countries. Here in Sweden he wrote lyrics for Björn Skifs, Janne Schaffer, Stefan Gunnarsson, Nils Landgren and many more. His highlight was when Michael Mc Donald sang on one of his and Andreas songs. But it was not until June 2017 that Brian released his first album that he sang on. He did not consider himself a singer so this was a big hurdle for him to overcome. He was already feeling his sickness but had not yet been diagnosed when the album was released. The album is called Genesis of Who I Am and is a reflection of who he was.

The biggest change once he got diagnosed with cancer was his lack of fear about putting out music that in his ears was not perfectly mixed and mastered yet. He knew that his time was measured and he wanted to get it all out there. During a few months he managed to release the following albums.

Brian Hobbs last albums

  • Genesis of Who I Am
  • Reflections (the album, not the book)
  • Impressions of the Outer Banks 2
  • Healing Purpose
  • The Independent Man (a musical)

These are the albums he relased from June 2017 to the end of the year. He also released the book The Craft of Creating which is a book about songwriting. The book came out in early January 2018 a month before he died so he was quite sick by then and I helped him get it all in order.

Brian truly found his life purpose when he realized he had inspired so many young students that he had taught as a singer-songwriter teacher.

The Earlier Albums

Here are some of his instrumental albums that he also played on and produced.

  • Impressions of the Outer Banks
  • Candle in the Window
  • Balancing Body and Mind
  • Second Glances

These are albums he co-wrote all or most of the songs:

  • Andreas Aleman 4 albums: This is Life, It’s the Journey, Home for Christmas, From Within
  • Peter Getz: Bossa my Soul
  • Monica Silverstrand: Been There Done That
  • Albert Hobbs Big Band: Love Remembered
  • Charlotte & Dea: Alabaster Nights

This is far from all Brian wrote but I know he was especially proud of these albums.

The Lesson of the Book Reflections

I hope the lesson to be learned is don’t wait for the perfect moment to get things done. If you have a dream of writing, painting, singing or whatever it is, just dive right in.  Let go of the fear of not being good enough or being judged. As long as you enjoy what you do, you have found your purpose in life and a way to feel fulfilled. For more inspiration go to Reflections, a Story of Hope, Healing, Facing Fears and Finding Purpose

Face Your Fears and Live Your Purpose

Fia Hobbs

www.fiahobbs.com

www.stresstostrength

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Hope, Healing, Fears and Finding Purpose

A Story of Hope, Healing, Facing Fears and Finding Purpose

Today I want to share my journey with you and reflect on the past three years that has ranged from hope to acceptance and everything in between. My husband started to write about his challenge facing late stage cancer as a way of handling his own fears and to inspire others who deals with a serious illness. Reflections is based on the blog he wrote during the seven months from his diagnosis to his death on February 8, 2018.

It has been intense at times, slow at other times, a lot of grief but also feelings of thankfulness. May 26 is the official release for the book Reflections, a Story of Hope Healing, Facing Fears and Finding Purpose.

How it Started

It started in 2017 when my husband became ill and got diagnosed with cancer for the second time. I realized from the start it was serious this time and dropped everything at hand and spent the last seven months with him. It was a journey, an inner journey, which brought a lot of sadness, grief, and worry. But it also came with closure and times where we felt content and grateful for every day we could spend together. For having true friends and family that helped us through the seven months and made it possible. I won’t go into details here as the book tells the story.

Hope and Healing

Reflections is also a book of hope and healing but not the physical healing we usually think about. It is more about emotional, mental, and the spiritual healing which in retrospect are just as important as the physical healing.

Brian also wanted me to write from my perspective as a wife and caregiver, as well as his counseling therapist. It is a role I know well, mainly from my work but also from having lost many friends to cancer. I was both his wife and psychological support and over the months, as he grew in spirituality, we had long conversations about life and death. Brian wanted to spread his message and was hoping in the early days that he could speak to people about finding purpose in life whatever they were up against, including facing death. He became passionate about helping people get over the fears that stop so many of us, something that he himself had struggled with for most of his life.

Inspiration

Unfortunately he was not able to fulfill the idea of public speaking but he did become a huge inspiration through his blog, especially to his singer-songwriter students. We were both overwhelmed by the response and he was lucky to find out while he was still alive that he had been an inspiration to many people over the years, without even being aware of it. He just followed his passion.

Book Release Online

I hope you will join me on May 26 at 5 pm Swedish time (GMT +2) for the book release that will take place online on my official Facebook page. There will be interviews with my husband’s friends from way back and fun stories as I believe in celebrating life and not the death of someone. My husband finally realized his purpose in life and the book will inspire you to find yours.

Face Your Fears and Live Your Purpose

Fia Hobbs

www.fiahobbs.com

www.stresstostrength.se

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Body Language Communication

Communication and Awareness

My reflection this week has been about body language communication. The lack of awareness and how confusing it can be when what we say and what we show does not line up. When we think about communication it is usually about words. It is about what we are saying, how we say it and the tone of voice we use. Our voice reveals our emotional state and it can be in a whisper or we can shout it out.

But the most revealing communication is the way we use our body language. It doesn’t matter how aware you are and try to conceal something, the body will tell the story if you let your conscious mind slip for a moment. Your true body language shows up and no one can be in control a 100 % of the time.

Who We Really Are

Our body mirrors our feelings and our thoughts and shows us who we are at that given moment. It becomes obvious when we look at posture, how we walk, sit and present ourselves or when we walk into a room. You might notice on a day when you don’t feel well that you drag your feet and feel at least a couple of inches shorter than usual. Another day you might wake up and feel really good and spring out of bed because you have something exciting to look forward to and you are a foot taller. At least that’s how you feel. The first people notice aboout you is your body language and the communication starts without you even opening your mouth. This is the first impression you make.

Authentic Communication

We are all true and authentic when it comes to our body language. It shows our emotional and mental state and of course the physical state. So what is my point here? If we want to have a true authentic communication with other people and you tell one story with words but another one with your body, you will not be perceived as authentic. It is of value to look at what you say and what you do and make sure that those two have the same message.

By aligning your body language with the spoken message you will present yourself in another way but remember it has to come from inside to be authentic. Because as soon as you let your guard down the old body language will take over and there will be a discrepency in your communication.

A Few Tips for an Authentic Body Language

  • Think about your posture and that it takes core muscles to be able to stand tall or to sit without slumping.
  • If your breathing is high up in the chest it sends signal to the body that you are anxious and when you feel anxious the body language change and you tense up. Take a few slow conscious breaths to lower your breathing and relax.
  • Don’t be afraid to look people in the eyes and smile. This is very important especially if you feel anxious or nervous.
  • If you are about to give a presentation or a speech it is natural to feel anxious and the body will show it. Again smile and look people in the eyes and they will smile back at you and you will become more at ease.

There are many ways to work with our body language to become more aware but these are a few of the most important ones. Next time you find yourself in a situation where you feel uncomfortable, take notice of your body language.  If you say one thing and feel that your body language tells another story you might not be able to communicate with conviction

Being a Therapist

In my work as a therapist and being a NLP practitioner I notice how we express ourselves with our body. I don’t judge but I do take notice of the tension and blockages that holds a person back.  I notice  hesitance, fear and anger but also joy and everything is expressed through the body.

This does not mean that you have to be constantly aware of your body language. It actually all starts with being authentic with your thoughts and your thoughts will carry your body’s message. It is when we are not true to ourselves that the body and the spoken language speaks different languages.

 

Fia Hobbs

www.fiahobbs.com

www.stresstostrength.se

The picture shows my dog who I was fortunate to have for over 16 years in my life. His body spoke the language of a big dog and he was not afraid of anything.

 

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The Power of Setting an Intention

Set Your Intention for the Week

It is easy to underestimate the power of setting an intention no matter what you want to accomplish. I’d like to give you an example from last Friday when I faced a challenge. I needed to create a promo video for the book Reflections, a Story of Hope, Healing, Facing Fears, and Finding Purpose. When I started I had no idea how to approach it. My first idea was to record myself in front of the camera and reading aloud from the pages of the book.

That idea didn’t excite me so instead I took my dog for a walk with an intention to open up my creativity without any preconception on how to solve my problem. It took me about ten minutes into the walk when I started to see parts of the video in my brain unfold. I saw the flow of a video of the surroundings where I live, the lake, the beautiful green trees that are blooming right now with white flowers. The more I saw the film playing in my head I realized that I needed to get my camera out.

The Unfolding

Things started to unfold when I walked down towards the lake and started filming. After a while I sat down and my dog sat down beside me. I started to see an outline of what I wanted to accomplish and the longer I filmed, the more I opened up my creativity in ways I had not been able to do earlier. I kept on filming and all of a sudden everywhere I looked was a beautiful scene that I could use in the video and I saw it unfolding in my mind.

What had Changed?

When I sat in front of my computer earlier that same morning I struggled to come up with any interesting ideas. The powerful change came when I set my intention and became willing to open up my mind. As a result I got out of my preconception and started with a blank canvas, not knowing how to do it. The change ocourred when I took my dog for a walk, set the intention and let go.

I’m sure that you already are doing this for yourself at times. Let me ask you when you get your best ideas? Isn’t it when you are in the shower or out walking when you have no pen and paper? For some people the best ideas occur first thing in the morning and for others when they go to bed.

Set Your Intention Everyday

If we use our intention with everything we do in life there is no telling what we can achieve. My suggestion for you this week is to start setting an intention with everything you do. Especially if you do not know how to solve a problem. Just set the intention and trust that it will be solved by your creative mind as we have so much more access to our fantasy when we let it loose and don’t try to control it. Give your conscious mind a rest so the subconscious mind can show you the way. Let the power of setting and intention begin. If you are curious about the result you can watch the video here.

Fia Hobbs

Stress to Strength

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Mindset during Times of Crisis

The Importance of Our Mindset during Times of Crisis

I want to reflect on our mindset and what happens when we get bombarded with information and find ourselves in a situation we cannot control. This probably happens to many of us most every day even without a pandemic. The way we normally deal with the feeling of being overwhelmed is with an enormous stress response. So what to do when we feel we have had enough stress and have maxed out our hard drive, our brain? How can we move from stress to strength when it comes to our mindset?

Stuck in a Loop

I hear a lot of people talking about all the things they cannot do anymore due to Covid-19. This in turn leads to a perfect set up for the brain to get stuck in a loop that can be hard to get out of. So how do we balance the fact that we are living in a situation that none of us have been through before. Unless you are old enough to have lived a hundred years ago and survived the Spanish flue we don’t really know what to expect and what it does to our mental health.

Fear of the unknown

We fear what we don’t know, that is how the brain is wired and it is a perfect set up to protect us. But when the fear goes on for days and months without being resolved, it puts us in a heightened state of being anxious. If we stay in this state for a long time it starts to affect our mind as well as the rest of the body and we react by either putting up a fight against it, try to escape or freeze up and do nothing. These are the three modalities we have and they serve us well under normal circumstances.

What to Do?

I don’t believe in pushing thoughts and feelings away as they will always surface later on and often come back with an accumulated force. By acknowledge them and their right to show up we can come to an acceptance of the feelings and for the situation that has caused them. Acceptance in this case means simply that you see things for what they are. No more and no less. We have a right to feel the way we do but sometimes it is wise to question how we act upon those feelings. The way we interpret our thoughts and subsequently act upon them vary depending on how we have dealt with them in the past.

What You Can Do

The best thing you can do is to be kinder to yourself and more accepting of the fact that it is an unusual situation you are going through. Also know that it will change even if we don’t know when. Living with the unknown is something we do every day without thinking too much about it. It is only when the unknown becomes a threat that we become aware of the things we cannot control.

In these circumstances the best way is to take control over the small things in life, the ones that are within your reach of control. It helps to bring back a sense of structure to your life and it affects your mindset in a healthier way. Also start to look at all the things you can do, this will completely change your mindset. Even write it down so you can see clearly that you have many options.

This is a good time to reflect on our life, what we want to do, how we want to live and how we can support each other. This takes the focus off you when you start to see that you can be of help to someone else. Pick up the phone, talk to your neighbor, and help out with what you can. Most of the time it helps just to know that someone care and sees us.

Summary

  1. All feelings are ok to feel
  2. Acknowledge and accept them
  3. Be kinder to yourself
  4. Take control of small things in your life
  5. Be aware of the loop of thoughts that leads you nowhere
  6. Look at what you can do instead of what you cannot do
  7. Reach out to help someone by beeing there

I believe that we will come out of this pandemic much stronger and with a new set of eyes to view our lives and the world we live in. My hope is that it will bring us closer and to see that we are all closely connected and what happens to one of us, happens to all of us. I also hope that we will treat the earth with respect and that includes all its’ inhabitants and animals.

These are my reflections of the week, I would love to hear yours.

Face Your Fears and Live Your Purpose

Fia Hobbs

Stress to Strength

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Mind Body Connection

The Mind Body Connection and How to go from Stress to Strength

I’d like to welcome you to my blog about the mind body connection and introduce myself. My name is Fia Hobbs, I am a speaker, an author, a therapist, a mother, a dog owner, a widow.  In addition I am also a forerunner for cancer survivors enhanced quality of life and founder of  a non profit organization.  Isn’t it funny though how when we try to put labels on someone, it still doesn’t describe who the person is?

Therefore I invite you to follow me on an inner journey in this blog where we will look at the connection between mind and body. I used to have two blogs, one in Swedish and one in English and from now on you will find both of them here.

Why should you be interested in my blog?

I will give you 3 reasons. 1. First of all If you are like me, fascinated by how our mind works and the mind body connection then I think you will like this blog. 2. Stress is on everybodys mind and for the past 30 years my work has been in stress management. Subsequently  I use different modalities to help people where mental training is the foundation.

The 3rd reason to follow this blog is if you want inspiration and reflection. I will encourage you to set intentions with whatever you do, whether it is for yourself at work or personally. Therefore my intention will be to start off the week with a Monday blog to inspire you and the Friday blog will be reflections of the week. I think we need to reflect more on the actions we take, or don’t take. However we live in such a fast paced life where it is easy to get overwhelmed and we need to learn how to navigate.

So what is my story?

I was first introduced to qigong in 1988 and have practiced it ever since and hold a Master’s degree in Medical Qigong. This brought me to go deep into meditation and mindfulness. It also led me to write my first book 10 years ago about mental training and my plan is to translate it into English over the summer and maybe add a few more chapters. The book, Öst möter Väst – Mental träning över gränserna, has a lot of different modalities in it plus great stories and is available in Swedish.

To sum it up, if you want to get inspired every week and learn about mindful living, wellness and also about deeper subjects covering life and death and everything in between, then you should follow my blog.

See you soon!

Face Your Fears and Live Your Purpose

Fia Hobbs