#1 NYT bestselling author Linda Lael Miller
I truly appreciate your patience

This illness has been rough.  The cough and congestion are long gone, but the bone-deep fatigue has been slow to fade.  I’m almost back to normal–as normal as I’ll ever be, anyway–:) and I am eager to write and blog regularly.

Our winners this week are Cheryl Gagne and Pat Yates.  Each of you will receive an autographed book, as will the winners of next week’s contest–two names will be chosen at random, notified by Jen, and announced here.  Just leave a comment, and you’re entered.

I’m almost through the first 40-day cycle of the Vimala Alphabet, and I am so pleased with the results, subtle as they are.  If you decide to check this out for yourself, I would suggest starting with “Your Handwriting Can Change Your Life”, by Vimala Rodgers.  The book is terrific, and it will get you off on the right foot for sure.  

This is a case of do as I say, not as I did.  :) Vimala recommends practicing only a few letters at a time, for 40 days.  I have never been very good at following instructions, which is probably why my results have been subtle–I practiced the entire alphabet.  Granted, I have a pretty good grasp on the letters now, but I might have seen more dramatic changes if I’d focused properly.

That said, I did see results, most notably a significant reduction in stress.  I will be practicing F, R and S in my next 40 days, as these are the letters of creativity, among other things.  I love the practice, and look forward to it every morning; I can feel my brain lighting up as I write.

I’ve been gobbling up the audio books since I got sick, keeping up my bullet journal, and–:)–checking out pictures of Rob Lowe on Google Images.  It’s a dirty job, but somebody’s got to do it.

Almost Out of the Woods

I think the c-diff is under control, and I am feeling much stronger, though I’m not quite there yet.  The trip to Atlanta was a marvelous experience, and I’m so glad I went.  I’m also glad I kept a low profile and returned home in fairly good shape.  Due to crowds and the general stress of travel (much as I love it!), I’m often under the weather when I return home.  What I’ve learned from this: that it’s okay to take things easy, lounge around in the hotel room when my presence is not required.  :)

Some of you have asked for more information on the Vimala Alphabet, which I discovered quite by accident, while looking online for something else, and have come to love.  I realize, however, that the title of Vimala Rodgers’ easily understood book is not the one I gave you before.  If you’re interested, look for “Your Handwriting Can Change Your Life”.  In short, the book is not about analyzing handwriting, but using this particular alphabet to make deep and lasting changes in the way your brain operates.  Practicing the letters actually alters the wiring and, furthermore, I can feel the sparks flying as my busy brain responds.  I look forward to practicing every day, and consider it a form of meditation.

Ms. Rodgers presents the alphabet she personally designed, many years ago, utilizing a comprehensive knowledge of graphology as a foundation.  Each letter is presented in its ideal form, in order to wire the best possible personal traits into the three pounds of gray matter between our ears.  She holds a Phd, so she knows her stuff, but her book and the accompanying diagrams are simple to understand.  She suggests a 40 day commitment to practicing the letters, and there are a few rules.  One writes in ballpoint pen (never with a pencil or a felt-tip), on plain, unlined paper, turned sideways into the ‘landscape’ position.  Why ballpoint?  Because the pressure the writer exerts matters.  Unlined paper is necessary because the ruled type makes it difficult to ‘think outside the box’, and the landscape position sends a message to the brain: “this is something different, so pay attention.”

At first, the practice was difficult, rather like writing with the non-dominant hand, so one must persist.  As instructed, I fill two pages on both sides, and mark the accomplishment on my calendar in descending numbers, starting with 40.  I have 14 days left on the trial period, but I have been convinced of the value of changing handwriting from the first week or so.  Once I have completed this first round, I will start a new one, focusing on certain letters and ligatures, which are the attachment of two letters, as in ‘th’, ‘be’, etc.  Each letter has a particular meaning and instills valuable qualities.  The letter T, for instance, is always crossed at the very top of the stem, with no gaps or loops.  (There are very few loops in the Vimala Alphabet, which presented a challenge to this loopy ole cowgirl.)  Among other benefits, writing T’s this way affects self-discipline and aspects of creative thinking–Nicolo Tesla, along with other visionaries, crossed his T’s in this way.  O’s are written in a clockwise direction, and that was tough, too–I’m still working on getting it right, in fact.

Have I noticed changes since beginning the challenge?  Yes, though they are quite subtle–I am more tolerant and open to the ideas of others, and I am not nearly so stress-prone as before.  I certainly plan to continue the practice indefinitely.  For more information, check out the website, iihs.com.  Jennifer Crebbin has authored at least two books on the subject of the Vimala Alphabet, and I can recommend them, too.

As I recover, I’ve been listening to TONS of audiobooks.  More on that next week.  

A new contest begins on Monday.  Get those comments in, and have yourself a marvelous, healthy weekend.