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National Indigenous People’s History Month – June 2024

National Indigenous People's History Month

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Indigenous People's Day

June 21 2024

June is National Indigenous People’s History Month and is also the month National Indigenous People’s day happens, on June 21st. In 2009, the Canadian House of Commons designated June as National Indigenous People’s History month as a time to learn and celebrate the many unique cultures of the Inuit, Metis and First Nations People across Canada. In 1996, June 21 was celebrated as Indigenous People’s day after it was proclaimed by the governor general of Canada, Romeo Leblanc.

This month we celebrate and reflect on all the unique and amazing cultures, traditions, and experiences of Indigenous, Metis, Inuit and First Nations people across Turtle Island. Without your wisdom, strength, resilience, and loving spirit, we would not have the country we have today.

Managing Stress using Cultural Knowledge

Managing Stress with Cultural Knowledge

Sometimes, the amount of stress in our everyday lives can build up and seem overwhelming and unmanageable. From work to family obligations, to paying the bills, the number of things we need to do in a day can add up and put a lot of pressure on your physical and mental health. This stress can inhibit your emotions, your joy and even your ability to think clearly, throwing you out of balance.

But with the right tools the stresses of everyday life can be managed until those stresses are eased.  Here are some tools you can use to self regulate  and bring yourself back into balance:

Get out and ground yourself in nature

Spend time outside on the land wherever you are, whether that is your yard, a garden, your communities’ land, a park or a nearby hiking trail. Being outside and communing with the land and mother nature can act as refuge from everyday stresses and help you disconnect from the causes of your anxiety.

Release your emotions

Sometimes when we are overwhelmed, we hold everything inside and forget to release what we are feeling. It’s okay to cry, to vocalize the stress and pain, to talk about what you are feeling and release that energy. If needed, find a trusted friend, or loved one, or maybe a counsellor with whom you feel safe with and let those emotions flow.

Reach out to your community

If you are feeling stressed and overwhelmed, you don’t have to go it alone. Speak to your family, to your friends and elders and let them know what is happening for you. Let them help you with their wisdom, their laughter and their love. Strengthening your connection to your community and your loved ones in difficult times can help ease the burden that stress is causing you.

Lean into your cultural and spiritual teachings

If you have a favorite cultural or spiritual practice that you enjoy, like smudging in the mornings, jingle dress dancing, drumming, creating art, or singing, embrace them. Lean into those things that bring you joy and connection in your traditions and spirituality.

Eating a balanced diet

Getting proper nutrition when you are feeling overwhelmed is an important part of managing stress. It will help make your body feel whole and strong and keep your emotions and mental health balanced. Make sure to eat a nutritious and balanced diet of proteins, carbohydrates and fruits and vegetables. Whenever you can, incorporate your traditional foods into your meals and fun foods as well! The joy in eating what is familiar, comforting or fun can help boost your mood and nourish the spirit.

Take regular exercise

Move your body in ways that make you feel good. Whether that’s playing your favorite sport, swimming, going for a walk outside or dancing. The important thing is to move your body and move your body regularly. The more joy you can have in your movement the better it will make you feel.

Get enough Sleep

An important part of bringing yourself back into balance is getting enough sleep. Some ways to help make sure you get those needed hours of rest are getting off your phone/screens at least an hour before bed; give yourself a regular bed time; regular exercise can also help relax you and get that deep restorative sleep you need.

Above all, make sure you give yourself a lot of compassion and grace when you are feeling stressed. It can be confusing as to where to begin helping yourself when you already feel overwhelmed. Start small by incorporating one healthy habit at a time, and slowly build on the confidence that the positive changes bring.

For more information, culturally sensitive resources and supports, check out the links below:

Metis Counseling – 15 ways to reduce stress

First Nation’s Health Authority – Traditional Wellness and Healing

First Nation’s Health Authority Culturally Safe and Trauma-Informed Services​

Hope for Wellness Help Line offers immediate mental health counselling and crisis intervention by phone or online chat. Call toll-free 1-855-242-3310 or start a confidential chat with a counsellor at hopeforwellness.ca​.

Indian Residential School Crisis Line is a national service for anyone experiencing pain or distress as a result of their residential school experience. Call toll-free 1-866-925-4419.

Kuu-Us Crisis Line Society provides crisis services for Indigenous people across BC. Adults/Elders line 250-723-4050; youth line 250-723-2040. Or call toll free 1-800-588-8717. Learn more at www.kuu-uscrisisline.com.

Métis Crisis Line is a service of Métis Nation British Columbia. Call 1-833-MétisBC (1-833-638-4722).

7 Kinds of Personal Budgets and How They Work

7 Kinds of Personal Budgets and How They Work

7 Kinds Of Personal Budgets and How To Use Them

It can be easier to know where you are at financially and achieve your financial goals if you keep track of your money every month. A budget can help you monitor your money and make you feel in control of your finances. The catch is to find a budgeting style that works for you so you will use it consistently and reach your goals. Here are some of the different types of budgeting styles you can try:

A Traditional Budget

This is possibly one of the most widely used styles of budgeting. You simply subtract your expenses from your income and what ever is left over at the end of the month can be used for savings, retirement, additional payments towards debt or extra purchases. This is one of the easier to use methods and is recommended for beginners.

The Zero-Based Budget

With a Zero-based Budget, the goal is to give every dollar you earn a job, making your income get to Zero every month. But that doesn’t mean it all goes to spending, you give each individual dollar a job, whether that is savings, retirement investing, or paying necessary bills. You choose where you spend the money, making sure each cent has a job and at the end you have nothing left over.

The 50/30/20 Budget

This budget is great for people who want to separate their income into precise portions. The idea is that 50% of your income goes towards necessary expenses, 30% goes towards things you want to spend money but aren’t necessities and 20% goes towards your savings and/or debt.

A Goal Based Budget

So perhaps you have specific goals in mind that you want to achieve. This would be the budgeting style for you. In this budget you have financial goals you want to accomplish, and you set aside money to help reach those goals. Usually, you choose one to two major goals and work with those. Examples of this could be:

  • Save 15% of my income every month.
  • Put 10% of my income into a retirement plan.
  • Pay down 20% of a debt every month.
  • Spend no more than $200 each week on groceries.

With this budget, you choose the goal(s) and then put money aside to achieve them.

The Pay Yourself First Budget

This method puts you and your financial goals front and centre. When you get your pay cheque, you literally pay yourself first by paying towards your financial goal before any other expenses. Whether that’s putting money in a high yield savings account, retirement plan or whatever savings goal you might have. This plan is especially good if you have a hard time making you and your savings a priority. After you pay yourself first the rest of the money goes towards expenses like rent, groceries, car, etc.

Spending Cap Budget

This budget says it all in the name: SPENDING CAP. In this budget you include all that you are willing to spend in a month to a maximum. This includes groceries, bills, debts, and savings all in one monthly limit and you can’t go over that amount. What ends up being left over you are free to do what you want with it, but we will always recommend you put it into savings.

The Envelope Budget

If you are more of a visual person and get encouragement from seeing your money pile up before your eyes in real time, then this budget might work for you. In the Envelope budget, you take physical cash and portion it out into labeled envelopes that are categorized for each expense and savings. For example, one envelope for a vacation, another for the car payment, another for groceries, etc. For maximum visual appeal you can get clear plastic sleeves in a binder or keep it simple with regular letter envelopes.

So which Budget is the best one for you? The one that works and gets you using it consistently. Some people like more restrictive budgets like the “Traditional Budget” or the “Spending Cap” method. Others might want more freedom like the “Pay Yourself First” style. Either way, the best budget is the one that works for you and helps you achieve your financial goals.

For more information or to speak with one of our advisors click this link to get in touch, we are here to help!

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