SPARKS IN ACTION with Donna Sherman
By Donna Sherman
SPARKS IN ACTION with Donna ShermanNov 28, 2023
Ten minute Mini Toolkit for Calming Your Body and Focusing Your Mind
This is good for anyone at work, at home, in school, in athletics; even families can do this together. To reach Donna: https://donnalsherman.com
Meghan Wolff: An engaging and informative episode about the environmental and health threats from plastics.
Meghan Wolff, PhD., MPH is the Health Policy Director at Beyond Plastics. Beyond Plastics is a nationwide project that educates the public on the plastic pollution crisis. in our short conversation Meghan shares a wealth of information, and some concrete suggestions, for how we can all do our part in reducing damage from plastics.
Michelle Montone: Intermittent Fasting. Science backed health benefits.
A lively and informative conversation about exactly what Intermittent Fasting is, its health and mental health benefits, various ways of implementing the practice, contraindications and more.
Michelle is the host of the Fast and Fabulous Podcast.
Nachshon Ben: An insightful, level headed, journalistic perspective from an Israeli
Nachshon Ben's clear, informed, journalistic perspective is a voice that needs to be heard right now.
We discuss current life in Tel Aviv, how to discern "noise" from fact and how to go from getting lost in the ideological rhetoric and move into productive conversations and action.
Ethan Nadelmann: An information rich perspective on Israel.
The first of a few 30 minute episodes with people who know a lot about Israel, the history and the complexity of the current Middle East and antisemitism. Ethan studied and taught Middle East Politics before moving into the world of international & domestic drug policy; he gives his take on the challenges of the region.
A 14 minute guided Refresh and Restore
If you can lie down, or recline, please do. You can do this, with positive effect while sitting in a chair if you have to. Do NOT listen to his recording while driving or operating any machinery; your eyes will need to be closed.
The Beautiful Mess of a Growth Mindset with Alaina Levine
Alaina Levine is a professional speaker, career coach and science writer. This is our second SIA conversation and we discuss how to grow through pitfalls such as the perfectionism (mea culpa!) , comparison, shame and embarrassment all with the goal of embracing our messy selves as we seek to work, serve and earn a living.
Another Vivid Adventure with Sy Montgomery, Naturalist, Author and Adventurer
Talking with Sy and, reading any of her 35 (!!) books, is always an adventure, an education and a source of genuine inspiration. We talk about many things with an emphasis on all things Turtle. Sy's book: Of Time and Turtles: Mending the World, shell by Shattered Shell will be released on September 19.
Ketamine Treatment Demystified: Meet Jill Gabay, CRNA, Founder of Ketamine Wellness Infusions, PA
This episode covers: How the primary neurotransmitters involved (GABA & Glutamate) in Ketamine Infusion Therapy act on the human brain and body, what a Ketamine infusion treatment might look like in a professional clinic, when Ketamine treatments are contraindicated and more. Jill is a compassionate medical professional with extensive experience as a Certified Registered Nurse Anaesthesist.
Fall In Love With (almost) Anything. Listen past the point where I sign off....You'll get why once you get there!
Do you find yourself thinking that your life is filled with too much of the mundane? Listen to this and learn to flip the script.
Listen to the very end; keep listening after I sign off and let me know if you know can identify the sound I recorded.
Birdsong and Brains: Listen to this 6 minute episode.
How we start our day matters. I've got a behavioral tool for you that will lift your spirts and settle your mind.
Let me know what you thinkl.
Link for study: https://pubmed.ncbi.nim.gov/36229489
Love Your pet? Meet Sonja Olson, DVM and learn about what she is doing to help veterinary professionals.
Veterinarians face enormous stress; however we rarely think about the fact that they encounter death, loss and complex medical decisions on a daily, perhaps even hourly, basis. Dr. Sonja Olson worked in emergency veterinary care for many years and has an insiders understanding of the complexity of practicing veterinary medicine. Sonja is part of a dynamic movement to bring therapeutic services to veterinary professionals and is the author of: Creating Wellbeing and Building Resilience in the Veterinary Profession.
For information about Sonja Olson, DVM https://sonjaolsondvm.com
For information about me: https://donnalsherman.com
Cosmic Perspectives: Meet Raj Pandya and Allyson Sheneman. Hear some awe inspiring facts about our universe from two people who love their work.
Raj Pandya is the Director of the John R. Kirk Planetarium and a lecturer in the Department of Physics & Astronomy at the State University of New York in New Paltz, NY. Allyson Sheneman is a student of Astronomy, Biology and Physics and an outstanding presenter of planetarium shows. In our fact-filled, fun and lively conversation they explore a variety of topics such as the possibility of intelligent life in the cosmos, an icy moon of Jupiter that spouts geysers, thoughts about human habitation on Mars, the power of the new Webb telescope and more.
PLEASE subscribe and support this podcast (which is a labor of love with a team of one (me!)) by giving it a review on Apple, Spotify or Google.
John R. Kirk Planetarium http://www.newpaltz.edu/planetarium
For information about Donna: https://donnalsherman.com
Do this. Please.
I want to grow Sparks In Action and to do that I need a minute of your time. Please rate and review the podcast on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts and Spotify. SIA is an uplifting community service, please help me keep it thriving. Thank you! xoxo
Ignite you Innovation: Alaina G. Levine: Unapologetic Unicorn, Proud "Word Nerd", Author, Professional Speaker, Effective Coach and Ambassador of Authenticity
Alaina worked as a science writer and over the years has created a dynamic data-driven, and process- oriented, approach to helping others work and live outside of narrow boxes. She is especially interested in working with people in the sciences( and STEM) who wish to pivot and transfer their knowledge and skills in new directions. Alaina does all of this with humor, color, sincerity and fierce strength. Our lively discussion covers a lot of ground and offers some actionable steps so grab a notebook. Simply listening to Alaina will ignite your inspiration and belief in your capacity to innovate.
For more info: https://alainalevine.com
About me: https://donnalsherman.com
The Heart Behind the White Coat and Surgical Mask: Dr. Liz Levine Part 2
Liz is a medical doctor, a hospitalist, who is committed to her patients while also being actively engaged in programs aimed at caring for caregivers. Our first conversation on the podcast happened in May of 2021. In this part 2 we continue to peel back the curtain that divides patient and health professional. We discuss how medical professionals can attune to their patients vulnerabilities, the post Covid shortage of health care professionals, how patients can attune to their medical professionals strengths and vulnerabilities, some of the technological and architectural changes that are having positive impact on patient care and some of the systemic changes that are making health care difficult to access. We also talk about the role of genuine gratitude and its impact on health care providers and the patients they care for.
Sara Mednick, PhD Part 2. Tips For Using Your Innate Restorative Systems to Improve Sleep and Overall Health.
Sara is a Professor at of Psychology at University of California where she directs the Sleep and Cognition Lab. In this episode Sara lays out a little more about the premise of her book: The Power of the Downstate: Recharge Your Life Using Your Body's Own Restorative Systems and we discuss steps that will help you activate more consistent, health-promoting behaviors. Take some notes while you listen and if you really want to dive deep into how to enhance you innate restorative systems read her book.
Sara's website: https://saramednick.com
For information about me and my work: https://donnalsherman.com
Meditation Without the Hype: Meet Lisa Dale Miller, LMFT LPCC SEP
Lisa is a licensed psychotherapist, a long-time teacher of meditation, a fiercely intelligent and compassionate woman who has never shied away from speaking her straightforward truth. Lisa also happens to be a dear friend of mine. This rich conversation between colleagues and friends was prompted by our shared concern that the often popular approach of "optimization" can be misleading and detract from the enduring insights and wisdom that a non-performance based meditation practice offers us.
To learn more about Lisa's work and her book visit: https:// lisadalemiller.com
To learn more about me and my work visit: https://donnalsherman.com
Meet Ethan Nadelmann: My ex husband and good friend: On Drug Policy, Psychoactive Substances, Being Ex Spouses and a whole lot more
Ethan has been involved in progressive international and domestic drug policy along with innovative harm reduction policies for decades. Our lively conversation includes many aspects of all things drug policy such as how justice intersects with drug policy and the human desire to alter our consciousness. We reveal some personal information about our marriage, the dissolution of our marriage and our transition from being married to being supportive co-parents, and good life-long friends.
Meet Sara Mednick, PhD, Sleep scientist and author of The Power of the Downstate: Recharge Your Life Using Your Body's own restorative Systems and Take a Nap, Change Your Life
Sara, in her down to earth style, shares her vast scientific knowledge about how we can listen to, and utilize, our body's innate rhythmic cycles to increase our overall health. Sara has a vast and deep knowledge of our body's fascinating rhythmic nature and, more than that, she is devoted to bring her knowledge out into the wider world so we can all understand and work with our body's cyclic nature. This is part 1 of a 2 part conversation.For more information about her work: https://saramednick.com
Mornings are for the Birds.
How we start our day matters. Chirps are like sonic hits of gratitude and joy. Listen to this 3 minute episode, try my suggestion and let me know how it works for you. More info and tools: https://donnalsherman.com
Quell Your Anxiety & Distractibility: A Guided Yoga Nidra with Donna Sherman
This episode falls into the "tools for better living" category of the podcast. This new 25 minute episode moves right into a guided practice that is designed to mitigate mental agitation and physical exhaustion so you can resume your day with a clear mind and settled body. For more info and tools: https://donnalsherman.com
Meet Sy Montgomery: Award Winning Author who is "equal part scientist and poet".
Sy Montgomerys' love for our natural world, and all the creatures in it, has taken her on soul enlarging adventures to distant areas of the earth where she takes readers on deep dives into the mystery and wonder of the minds and behaviors of fascinating- and wildly intelligent- creatures such as pacific octopuses, hawks, pigs, dogs, amazonian pink river dolphins, tigers, tarantulas and more. Sy's prose is gorgeous with detail and fierce with truth. She explores the sacred in the natural world and from it, learns to"love like a God.' Listen and be inspired. Read her books and embark on an adventure that will enlarge your heart, feed your mind and light up your wonder and curiosity.
A short poem from me to you
I wrote this one way back in 2000.
"Wild life, life lived wild..." Let's celebrate it!
Mind/Body Refresh and Reset: Use at work, home or whenever you need a restore reset!
This is designed for mid -day or anytime you begin to feel brain fog, eye strain, mind overdrive or simply want a guided reset.
Do not listen while operating a car or any sort of machinery.
You can follow this while seated at your desk or lying on the floor. As always, if you have questions or want to reach out visit my site at https://donnalsherman.com
Meet 6 year old Lisa and her newly coined term: "Imaginationish"
After a few of us created a story that involved time travel, George Washington, a blue flying horse and a run in with a T Rex I asked Lisa this question this question:
" What's the best thing about being a child?" Here is her response.
Meet Kim & Allen: Creating Scientific Diplomacy with Israeli and Palestinian Students
Allen Taylor, PHD and Kim Kronenberg, MPH have created an inspiring and uplifting program called STEP-GTP: Science Training Encouraging Peace- Graduate Training Program. This visionary program pairs Palestinian and Israeli Graduate Students so they can do scientific work and research together with the aim of "reintroducing Israelis and Palestinians to each other" and cultivating enduring professional relationships built on respect and trust.
For information visit https://STEP-GTP.org. You can contact Kim or Allen at firstname.lastname@example.org
Meet Jimmy Buff: Radio Broadcasting meets Community Activism
Jimmy shares his rich history in the world of radio and how his path led him to where he is now at the the vibrant, non- commercial Radio Kingston in Kingston, NY. Radio Kingston (WKNY 1490 AM /107.9 FM) breaks the boundaries of commercial radio and creates a vital and diverse platform for the exchange of information, ideas, inspiration, story telling and community actions with the goal of creating a more "just and equitable Kingston". To learn more: https://radiokingston.org
"Wait": Another gem from Jason
The wisdom of non-reactivity and patience in 12 seconds.
Meet Jason: 36 seconds of 9 year old wisdom
Out of the mouths of kiddos...
Listen and hear a pearl of wisdom about accepting the goodness and the difficult. All I asked was: "What do you think we grown ups need to know?" This is what he said.
2 minute quick lift
If your tank feels empty and you need some juice, here is a stream of good sparks from me to you.
23 minutes of the deep rest of Yoga Nidra. Fast forward to 3:40 into the recording to bypass the intro and move right into the practice.
Whoever you are, wherever you are in this world, this is for you. I've received requests that I create a guided relaxation episode on this podcast so here it is. There is a lot I can say about the profoundly restorative guided relaxation that is Yoga Nidra but it's better for you to directly experience the therapeutic value. If you have listened to the introduction before you can forward/skip to roughly 3 minutes 40. seconds into the episode to bypass my intro and go straight into the practice.
If you want more information about Yoga Nidra in general, or my recordings from 2017 in particular, you can visit my website http://donnalsherman.com where you will find a "Guided Relaxation Recording" option on the menu bar. There are direct links for downloading my digital recordings from Amazon and the iTunes store. If you like CDs, I can get one to you. If you have questions or want to contact me there is a contact page on my website: https://donnalsherman.com
I wish you ever deepening peace and vibrant health.
Wake Up,Drink Water,Walk & Work Better!
Three (deceptively) simple- and easy to integrate- practices I gleaned from listening to Dr. Andrew Huberman, Neurobiologist at Stanford University School of Medicine. The information I mention is discussed in great scientific detail in episode #28 of the "Huberman Lab" podcast. I do not know, nor have I ever met, Dr. Huberman. I listen to many science-based podcasts and simply want to share good information, that could add to your health and overall well-being, with you.
Meet Irv Sherman: Three (unplanned) minutes of truth from my (almost) 90 year old dad on Father's Day
A wise elder, bereaved yet grateful husband, father, grandfather and great-grandfather, father-in-law, uncle and friend spontaneously speaks into my phone on Fathers Day.
We love you Dad.
Meet Marc Shaiman: Composer/Lyricist/Musician & Human Extraordinaire
Marc, a world renown, composer/lyricist/arranger and performer who works in films, musical theater and television ( along with his co-lyricist Scott Wittman) has received a Tony, a Grammy, an Emmy and seven Oscar nominations. We cover a range of subjects from how the language of music and lyric can evoke deep emotions in both adults and children and how humor, and joy, create bridges between us. Marc, in his honest and unassuming way, reflects on his many years in the world of theater and the process of giving air to the essential creative flow of composing/writing while also honoring the necessary progressions that the world of musical theater is undergoing.
Listen to the very end and you might just hear a some piano improv....
Meet Lisa Glick: Thriving with a BiPolar Brain
Listen and meet someone who speaks candidly about living a rich and full life with a brain that works differently. Lisa had a long career in the public school system as a musical educator, singer and choral director while being a mother, an ultra runner and outdoor enthusiast. During our conversation Lisa shares her truth with remarkable honesty while also sharing how she made a deliberate choice to drop her fear of being judged and misunderstood so she could live with unapologetic bold passion.
Meet Dr. Liz Levine: Bringing essential humanity to medical professionals and patients
Liz Levine, MD, is an internist and hospitalist at Northern Dutchess Hospital in Rhinebeck, NY. We talk about how she brings her medical expertise, her humanity and her wisdom to both her patients and her fellow health care providers. Liz is devoted to supporting fellow medical professionals in their process of drawing on their humanity while helping them resource tools that will help them negotiate the tricky territory of being a health care provider. We talk how both patients and medical professionals can be in their respective roles while also sharing their essential humanity (I share a bit about my cancer experience) and Liz offers some specific tools as examples of how she brings her desire to help "heal the healers" into her everyday work.
Drop Into Sleep: 10 Minutes of Soothing Guided Relaxation to Prepare You for Sleep
The recorded night noise that accompanies the first two minutes of this recording drops off by the 3rd minute.
I wish you restorative sleep. ~~ Donna
Meet Lieutenant Karen Pignataro: Journeying from Art Historian, to Innkeeper to Firefighter
Meet Karen who literally fights dangerous sparks while serving her community with fierce and loving devotion. Karen, the manger of a busy Inn in Woodstock NY, joined the Woodstock fire department at the age of 52 and since then, has become an interior firefighter, an EMT and a lieutenant. We talk about the interesting path that led Karen to join the fire department, what the training entails, why she does what she does and what the world of volunteer fire fighting looks like. Approximately 70 % of all fire fighters serve their community on a volunteer basis!
Turning Arrows Into Olive Branches
My short take and how to lessen the divide between us and have respectful conversations.
Meet Charlie Gadol, MD: Medical Pathology Meets Cleaning Up Environmental Pathology
What do you get when you mix the field of medical pathology with the love of, and care for, our natural world? You get Charlie Gadol! Charlie is an engaged and generous citizen who walks his talk with sincere humility and positive actions. Full disclosure: Charlie is my husband.Click play and join our conversation.
WHY you need to invite the Sparks In Action podcast into your life.
I'm not selling anything. My goal is to restore your faith in humanity and ignite your inspiration. Quite the deal!