Tag Archives: AARP

My Coaching Journey

by Dudley Evenson

I was curious about life coaching and always felt I could be helpful in that field. My life experiences have prepared me in many ways to understand issues people are dealing with. A few years ago, I volunteered at our local low power radio station and met the wives of a couple of the guys working there. These two ladies, Laura and Terri, were both practicing ‘life coaches.’ I realized that my long marriage with Dean Evenson has taught me about relationships; raising children about parenting; our ‘decade of intentional poverty’ and living in a school bus about simple living; running our music label, Soundings of the Planet, about being a successful business owner and entrepreneur; my own life path about healthy living. I had a lot of life experience, but I didn’t know yet how to translate that into being a useful life coach.
Northwest Corner Coaches
Laura and Terri invited me to join the Northwest Corner Coaches Meetup group and I got to know a lot of people in the field. We networked and put on events to raise awareness about the coaching profession. I then trained to be guide and lead AARP Life Reimagined Checkups to help people through the inevitable changes that life presents, especially for people over fifty. After that, I was able to get professional training with Impact Coaching Academy and was fortunate that Terri was my teacher. In the course, I got a full overview on how to be a coach and all that entails on a professional level and recently I received my official Life Coach Certification. I now have several clients and still have some ‘pro bono’ clients who I am working with for free to give me more experience and hopefully in the process, put my new skills to use in helping them move forward in their lives.

Coaching Cafe graphic 600
This past weekend, Terri and I led the AARP Life Reimagined Checkup here in Bellingham. We had a great turnout and people got to go through a process of looking at their passions, values, skills and experiences to choose ‘what’s next’ in their lives. This coming Saturday (May 21, 2016), our Northwest Corner Coaches group is sponsoring a free COACHING CAFÉ where we will share more about the coaching field, introduce people to some local coaches and offer the ability to sign up for free coaching sessions to those who attend. Click here for details. Continue reading My Coaching Journey

The Healing Power of Music

AARP Healing MusicIt’s wonderful when big organizations like AARP are communicating to their 37 million members about the healing power of music. This is what Dean Evenson and I have been talking about and teaching for over three decades and it feels like the ‘mainstream’ is finally catching up. An article in the recent AARP Bulletin shares advances in helping Alzheimer’s patients by using music and the results are amazing. In his book Musicophilia, neurologist, Oliver Sacks, states that music can be very much like medicine for Alzheimer’s patients. “Music in no luxury to them, but a necessity, and it can have a power beyond anything else to restore them to themselves, and to others, at least for a while.”

In a study at George Mason University, Jane Flinn, a behavioral neuroscientist along with graduate student, Linda Maguire, tested a group of patients with various forms of dementia who regularly sang familiar songs like ‘Somewhere Over the Rainbow’ and ‘Isn’t It Romantic.’ In observing them over four months, the researchers discovered that the mental acuity of those who regularly sang went up considerably. With the ineffectiveness of many pharmaceutical drugs to deal with dementia, it is exciting to witness the benefits of alternative approaches.

A group in Minneapolis even formed a choir of people living with Alzheimer’s and other brain diseases and their caregivers. Since people with these diseases have difficulty navigating through many phases of their lives, being able to laugh and be joyful through singing can lift the spirit and improve connectivity and engagement.

Some of you may have seen the recent film called Alive Inside: A Story of Music and Memory. Or maybe you were one of the 11 million people who watched the clip from the movie that went viral on YouTube. It showed an Alzheimer’s patient named Henry who was reawakened listening to a favorite song by Cab Calloway, clearly showing the power of sound to reconnect the neural pathways of memory.

Dan Cohen, founded Music and Memory initially to provide iPods with personalized music for elderly patients in nursing homes. He started by donating 200 iPods and now the program has expanded to hundreds of facilities throughout the country. One of the states that has picked up the ball and is running with it is Wisconsin where two-thirds of the state’s nursing homes use personalized playlists of music as part of daily caregiving routines. Here’s a statement by Deb Jacoby of the Rocky Knoll Health Care Center that attests to the benefits of personalized music for patients ~ “iPods are making a huge impact here in Wisconsin. I have about 30 iPods in use at this time. Families are excited about how some of their loved ones are more engaged in conversation, in better moods, and actually awake and more engaged throughout the day.”

So the blessings of finding Peace Through Music continue. We are glad to be part of this important movement and look forward to learning how we can contribute more to the healing of people and the planet. Visit us at soundings.com to learn about the part of the universe we are playing in.

If you are interested in learning more about the healing power of music you might want to check out our DailyOM online course called EXPERIENCE MUSIC AS MEDICINE. It’s practically free (you just pay what you want to or can afford). Also available as a ten DVD set called SONIC HEALING: MEET THE MASTERS VIDEO COURSE. A bit more expensive but then you have the videos and they include Public Performance Rights so you can show them in public.