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Books about Reflexology

Here are my favorite books about reflexology that are an excellent starting point for beginners:

Reflexology: Health at your fingertips by Barbara & Kevin Kunz

Hand Reflexology: simple routines for health and relaxation by Barbara & Kevin Kunz

Healing Yourself with Foot Reflexology by Mildred Carter

Feet First: A guide to foot reflexology by Laura Norman

Books about Wellness in general

Here are my favorite books about wellness, spirituality, or other topics:

Body Cards: Insight from the body, Wisdom for the soul by Courtney Putnam - these are oracle cards, but each card includes a meditation and art project, so it's a wonderful tool for self reflection and sparking creativity.

Stretches and Exercises

Here are some of my favorite stretches and exercises:

For building foot strength:

For stretching the calves:

For shoulders and back:

How to Test Your Shoes & My favorite shoe companies

How to test if your shoe is the right shape for your foot:

1. Get two pieces of paper, a pen, scissors and a friend to help you.

2. Barefoot, stand on top of the paper, one foot on each sheet.  Stand up straight.  Have your friend trace the outline of your foot. 

3. Cut out the shape of your foot and try to put it into your shoe.  If the paper can lie flat inside, then your shoes fit.  If the paper needs to bend or fold inside the shoe, then the shoe is too small.  You will often find that the sides or tops of the toes fold. Western shoes tend to be too narrow for most feet.  Make sure to do this with both the right and left shoes, as it is common for our feet to be slightly different size or shape.

Benefits of minimalist or barefoot shoes - YouTube Video

How to transition to minimalist shoes - YouTube Video

My favorite minimal shoe companies:

Lems Shoes

Softstar Shoes

Astral Designs

Meditation Tools

I cannot emphasize enough how much meditation has helped my improve emotional state, concentration and patience.  I recommend it for everyone.  Learning to sit still without distractions, watching your thoughts without getting carried away by them, breathing, being aware of your body are all really beneficial skills to have.

First and foremost, I recommend the app Headspace.   There is a free ten part course simply called "Basics".  Each session is 3-10 minutes long, features a little video lesson and guided meditation.  There are five teachers to choose from; Andy is my favorite.  I have taken this course over and over again.  It's a fantastic place for beginners or a great refreshers course for experienced meditators. 

Next I recommend the podcast "The Way Out Is In" which is a conversation between a Buddhist monk at Plum Village (a student of Thich Nhat Hanh) and a lay person.  Each week they discuss a different aspect of life, and always finish each podcast with a short, guided meditation which relates to the topic they just discussed.  This is the kindest and gentlest podcast I've ever listened to, and I want to share it with everyone I know.

I love Qigong, and here's a great example on YouTube video.  It's a moving meditation that connects breath with movement and is easy enough that people of all physical fitness levels can do it.

If you're looking for minimalist background music for meditation, reading, or studying, I like the app Endel.  This is a subscription app ($6 month) which plays music based on your mood, your activity, the weather, or the time of day.  But it's one long stream of uniquely created music so it never repeats, you won't get tired of it.  Backed by neuroscience to promote longer periods of focus.

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