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Gifting, Generosity, and Gratitude

by Dr. Randy

Christmas Presents

Gifts are a wonderful expression of generosity. If your tradition includes giving gifts this holiday season, you may want to take a moment and consider the motives and dynamics of this generous pursuit. Children can be included in a discussion about the purpose of exchanging gifts. That purpose is the personal benefit of generosity and gratitude. And the lesson can extend over the entire year. Give whatever you can. Give the gift of listening, attending with concern and interest. Forego your own personal interests and appreciate the spirit and interests of that other person in front of you. Appreciate the interconnectedness of everyone and don’t take relationships for granted.

Make gift giving personal. It is especially amusing when the season turns into a gift unwrapping frenzy, which leaves parents dismayed and disappointed in their carefully crafted purchases. Personally handing gifts to their recipient is an expression of caring. “I thought you would really like this.” Even if the gift is from “Santa,” parents can say, “This looks like something special for you.” Children already know their parents are psychic. Slow down the whole whirlwind of the holidays and there will be less post-gifting let down. Savor the flavor of generosity. And express gratitude. Model gratitude for children. “Wow that is so amazing. I bet you are feeling really grateful you got that.”

Giving gifts is an outflowing of generosity. We may have stress about choosing the perfect gift for that special person, and apprehension about whether they will like it. We may have expectations that we will get a certain response from the recipient. Or we may give with a spirit of generosity and no desire for any reciprocity or recognition.

At this holiday season we can remember to express gratitude. There is a great deal of evidence from clinical studies that feelings of gratitude are beneficial to our mental state and level of happiness and even our health.

On a daily basis we can expand our awareness by being grateful for everything. The world is complex and functions in a hidden and fundamental network that we take for granted. We can start with gratitude for our families and friends, then expand to the awareness of objects that we use, the trees and lumber industry that provide our paper, the farmers and distributors and stores that supply our food. Even the workers that pave our roads. Everything in fact is interconnected, the cycle of oxygen and carbon dioxide in nature, the cycle of birth and death, the miracle of our daily existence. Be grateful for everything.

Include Homeopathy

by Dr. Randy

Holistic health care is an inclusive practice. A holistic view covers a wide-ranging perspective: physical symptoms, diet, exercise, emotions, relationship support, work or school stress, and spiritual life. Some of these areas may be doing just fine and some may have lots of stress.  The goal of holistic practice is to bring all of them into a healthy range. This array of coverage calls for different types of interventions at various times. The medical model considers nutritional supplements, herbs and dietary changes. A psychotherapeutic model considers emotions and life situations. An educational model supports learning styles and learning differences. And a spiritual model provides sustenance for the relief of suffering and existential concerns.

Few therapeutic systems are able to affect a majority of these realms. But Homeopathy does have the potential to provide a healing stimulus that spans a broad swath of life’s imbalances. Classical Homeopathy in particular offers a comprehensive remedy for the physical, mental, emotional body. Homeopathy does not cure or even treat many health issues, such as structural physical problems or family dysfunction. But the directional force that a constitutional homeopathic medicine provides is truly amazing at times. No other medical system has that potential. Chinese medicine covers a lot of ground in its scope and effect on the body. The difference between homeopathy and other medical systems is the energetic power that a well-chosen remedy can provide. The kick start that homeopathy can stimulate often allows other interventions to work much better. And conversely, the support of diet and herbs and nutritional supplements often builds a stronger foundation so that a homeopathic medicine can do its job more profoundly.

So the bottom line is, don’t neglect to include constitutional homeopathic treatment in your holistic medical plan.

Mindful focusing

by Dr. Randy

I want to share a technique for solving a problem with a unique method that may be helpful to you. You may have a personal problem and thinking about it, or weighing pros and cons, has not led you to an answer. Your body may know the solution and there is a technique for accessing this information. The method called Focusing, is part of a broader technique that identifies buried feelings that may not be conscious or known to us. It is a technique that accesses a “felt-sense,” something that our body is aware of that lies below consciousness. Try this guided meditation if you like and see if it is helpful to you. Click here.

Wanting things to be different

by Dr. Randy

Not everything goes as we planned or imagined things should be.
Sometimes we need to simply recognize the way things are and observe that.
We need to set up the conditions for success and adapt as things unfold. Extra stress comes when we want things to be other than they are.
You should be aware that we are in Scorpio now (until Nov 21), which is a dark time, a time of death of old ideas and a rebirth of a new perspective. We can become aware that things may not be going as we imagined. Just be with that. Everything is constantly changing. Just stay with it right now and watch your feelings about it.

Here is an attitude you can try:

Not knowing – how things will turn out
Stay aware – of how things are right now
Take action – to make things better

Trust your insights, your strengths, and your path.

Wellness Program

by Dr. Randy

Family running along beach

Are you promoting your health in the best possible ways? It is helpful to periodically review your health plan. Look at specific areas of your lifestyle including your diet, sleep patterns, exercise, and relaxation. Review how you are treating health problems including medications and holistic care. And review your spiritual practices: relaxation, exposure to nature, and meditation/mindfulness.

Some of these personal practices are preventive, and some may be directed at problems, but the line between prevention and treatment can blur because many things that you do can serve both functions. Each of us can move in a direction of better health, despite the inevitability of aging for adults and our lack of control over some areas of our children’s lives.

Let’s talk about each of the areas that effect health and wellness in a little more detail. I have summarized them below, but I am happy to arrange a time to personalize a wellness program for you that considers your unique health patterns, your goals and priorities, and your busy life.

Holistic Healthcare

A range of holistic treatment forms have the ability to address imbalances and cure symptoms. These treatments include targeted nutritional supplements, homeopathic medicines, and Chinese and western herbal formulas. The goal of an individualized treatment plan is to increase the overall level of health and treat specific disease symptoms.


Diet adjustments and recommendations need to consider individual lifestyle, food preferences, food sensitivities, and cultural styles. Of course, a whole foods, natural diet is best, with a minimum of processed foods free of artificial chemicals. Different individuals have varying needs for specific amounts of protein, fat, and carbohydrates and other specific nutrients. So an individualized eating program is necessary for long term health.


There is no question that an exercise program is necessary to maintain healthy bodily functions, ensure good sleep, and foster mental focus and emotional well-being. For some people this may involve daily walking, and for others a more rigorous program of cardio, aerobics, sports, resistance training, yoga, or exercise classes. Children and adults need to keep their bodies moving.


Adequate and quality sleep are not always available to everyone. Young children wake parents, worries occur in the middle of the night, or some people have difficulty calming thoughts to fall asleep. There are excellent supplements and techniques to solve sleep problems and ensure good rest for alertness and energy the following day.

Mental Health

Relaxation training, meditation, and specific methods for focusing on the present moment are some of the techniques that can help achieve a more peaceful mental state. In our modern lifestyle where many people are bombarded by stressful situations, electromagnetic radiation, and a rushed, fast pace of life it is essential to take some time to slow down and become more centered. Getting out into nature has tremendous health benefits. But all of these activities require a time commitment and scheduling these into the daily flow of life.

Develop a Wellness Plan

I would love to help you develop your individualized wellness program. I am available for local office visits in the SF Bay Area or by phone or video consultation for those living at a distance. Let’s get you on track to create a higher level of well-being and health. I am happy to be your partner in creating and maintaining a wellness program that fits your life.