DECEMBER 2015
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Dear Friends,
Cindy enjoying time with her husband and daughters.


At the holidays, lack of snow doesn't keep us from being festive here in Florida! My one wish for each of you this holiday season is that you be given the gift of time. While it can't be wrapped in a bow nor placed under the tree, time allows us to be present and share with those we love. And isn't that the greatest gift of all?

May your warm and happy memories of years past be added to in abundance this holiday season.

Happy Holidays from my home to yours!

Hugs, Cindy
your health |De-stressing December     
tag_says_relax.jpg
3-Minute Mediation Video
Manage Your Stress:
Listen in as Cindy talks about good self care practices during this busy (and often stressful) time of year. Presentation slides and written transcript of this original presentation courtesy of the Lupus Foundation of America.
Take a Quick Break:
The sounds of ocean surf and a gloriously setting sun sooth in this short 3-minute video. Click above to be transported to a calm and nurturing place where you can breathe, relax, and simply be...at least for 3 minutes. A Cindy original!

featured article |The Gift of Presence    

"Time is the most valuable thing a man can spend."
~Theophrastus (371-287 BC), Greek philosopher

This time of year my thoughts naturally turn to the gift list I keep in my purse for reference during holiday shopping trips. I love presents and finding that "just right" gift for each person on my list. This year, to jump start my holiday shopping, I've been thinking about the best gifts I've ever given or received and realized that not one of these "best gifts" has ever appeared on any shopping list. Why? Because the very best gifts haven't been about presents at all. Rather, my best gifts have all been about presence...connecting, creating and enjoying a shared experience with another person.

Happy hours spent with my niece one year making gingerbread houses was a gift of presence that brought a smile to both our faces. The lopsided, over-decorated confections and the fun we had together making them is indelibly etched in my mind. My heart is full to bursting with cherished memories such as these.I will carry with me into old age the memory of the Christmas morning my husband and I walked into our long-awaited infant daughter's room, reached into her crib to stroke her warm pink cheeks and baby soft hair, and gave thanks to the adoption agency for the gift of her presence in our family. And, many years later, the Christmas Day video call we received from Morocco as our daughter served overseas in the Peace Corps. The memory of her face on the computer screen that day remains dearer to me than any store bought gift I've ever received. They cost me nothing to create; all that was required was my presence. I just had to show up.

red_gifts_angel.jpg This year my gift list is divided into Presents and Presence. I am hoping to give everyone I love a little something from each category. The former will be opened and enjoyed Christmas morning and perhaps in months to come. But the latter? The gift of presence doesn't wear out. The memories it creates and the joy it brings will last me a lifetime.

books |What Cindy's Reading
In the midst of this busy holiday season, I hope you find time to relax with a good book! Cindy
  
The Little Locksmith: A Memoir
by Katharine Butler Hathaway

I heard about the reissue of this 1943 title and thought it would be fun to locate a first edition. After finding one online, I dove into the yellowed pages of my 72-year-old copy. The Little Locksmith is the remarkable story of a young girl with spinal tuberculosis who was strapped to a bed to prevent hunchback. Her story is one of struggle, adversity, courage and a spirit that soars in spite of her co
ndition. I especially enjoyed the author's telling of her later years, her writing process and the eloquent description of her home. I highly recommend this book. 
 
Come Rain or Come Shine
by Jan Karon

I've always enjoyed Jan Karon's Mitford series and found this latest release a perfectly heartwarming read for the holidays. Like its predecessors, the characters are thoughtful and kind and the story easy to follow. With all the busyness of the holidays, choosing a simple and enjoyable read that doesn't require a lot of mental energy works for me! May there be more Mitford novels to come.
Speaking
Cindy is currently booking her 2016 speaking engagements. If you have a group that may be interested in hearing her uplifting messages of hope, optimism and overcoming challenge, please email her at cindy@cindyconey.com.
encouragement
Read Cindy's latest blog entries Visit our blog
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ABOUT CINDY CONEY Nationally recognized keynote speaker and resiliency educator Cindy Coney has assisted thousands in moving beyond "coping" with limitations to recapturing joy, balance and freedom through her speeches and pioneering educational training for patients and healthcare professionals. Diagnosed with lupus in 1980, Cindy has traveled the globe to share her story of thriving after a chronic diagnosis. Read more.