radiant magazine (autumn 2013)

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A faith-impacted look at life and culture, a sense of place, a sense of fun and a positive vibe.


  • R A D I A N T

    AUTUMN 2013

  • 2013 Hitchin Christian Centre

    PUBLISHER Hitchin Christian Centre | Registered Charity 1005126

    EDITORIAL Paul Rigby @rigbypaul, D McGhee, Kate Middleton @communik8ion

    DESIGN Paul Rigby

    CONTRIBUTORS Tracy Bengougam @TracyBengougam, Brendan Devitt, Sharon Eason, Suzy England, Tim Hallas @tim_balance, Chris Igoe @CMIgoe, D McGhee, Kate Middleton, Jen Rigby, Matt Summerfield @mattsummerfield,

    Gary Turner, Nora Upchurch, Paul Windo @paulwindo

    PHOTOGRAPHY Nat Cowan @Nat3006, Jen McGhee, Paul Rigby, Nicola Robert, David Rudeforth @DavidRudeforth, Dan Shepherd @DanielShepherd

    ONLINEwww.radiantpeople.net | @HCClatest | facebook.com/hitchinchristiancentre

    HCC SUNDAY SERVICES9:15am & 11:15am

    LOCATIONHitchin Christian Centre | Bedford Road | Hitchin | Hertfordshire | SG5 1HF

    CONTACTinfo@radiantpeople.net | 01462 442238

    COVER IMAGE Pegsdon Hills near Hitchin, by Nicola Robert


  • COTS



    stress less!

    foodbank, headspace in hitchin

    food The RISe of The gaSTRo puB, ReCIpe


    beards gooD IDea oR haIRy SCaRy?

    radiant year phoTo wall

    film & dVd apoCalypSe

    books gReaT BookS (foR kIDS) you May have MISSeD

    sounds alBuM RevIewS

    moldoVa CaSa heleN

    ThRee gReaT ThINgS aBouT westmill

    7 things you didnt know about hitchin, tweet me

    dont make history, change the future

    was jesus an anarchist?


    instagram hitchin




















  • Hello. A big welcome to the first issue of Radiant, a magazine with a faith-impacted look at life and culture, a sense of place, a sense of fun and a positive vibe.

    Amongst an eclectic mix, in the following pages were taking a look at stress and how to handle it without doing less, the essential lowdown for your next beard style, the apocalypse in film and leaving a legacy you can be proud of.

    Please get in touch with us. Let us know what you think of the magazine or ideas for next time. Or even come and check us out at Hitchin Christian Centre sometime; wed love to meet you.

    Paul Rigby paul.rigby@radiantpeople.net



  • Happiness is waking up, looking at the clock and finding that you still have two hours left to sleep.

    Charles M. sChulz

    It is not how much we have, but how much we enjoy, that makes happiness.

    Charles spurgeon

    Let no one ever come to you without leaving better and happier. Be the living expression of Gods kindness: kindness in your face, kindness in your eyes, kindness in your smile.

    Mother teresa

    A cheerful disposition is good for your health; gloom and doom leave you bone-tired.

    proverbs 17:22

    aint got no cash, aint got no style,aint got no gal to make you smilebut dont worry, be happy

    bobby MCFerrin

    happiness...With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams,it is still a beautiful world.Be cheerful. Strive to be happy.

    Max ehrMann

    Lifes a happy song...When theres someone by my side to sing along.

    the Muppets


  • StreSS iS everywhere,

    And it S getting the

    bl Ame for All k indS

    of Stuff: StrokeS,

    heArt diSeASe, mentAl

    heAlth problemS

    one report even cAlled

    StreSS the bl Ac k deAth of

    the 21St century. but iS

    it reAlly thAt bAd?



  • e think of stress as an emotional thing, but its much more physical than we realise. Stress is about real changes in the levels of

    chemicals, hormones and activation in your body and brain, triggered by the demands placed on them. So, from the moment your alarm goes off in the morning, youre dealing with stress - even if you dont feel stressed out.

    Emotional stress, however, is about your brain trying to alert you and prepare you in case you might need to do something. It triggers the same physiological changes in your body, just as great as when you are actually reacting, if not greater. Emotional stress is about anticipating something happening - and of course its much more stressful when you know there is nothing you can actually do about it.

    So are we more stressed now? Some people argue were just labelling a lot more stuff as stress than we used to, but theres pretty good evidence that some physical health problems which are becoming increasingly common - think high blood pressure, heart problems, type two diabetes etc - are linked to increased stress.

    Scientists argue two things about 21st century life make it more stressful. The first is the interactive, communication-rich nature of our world. The pure complexity of our social world creates a lot more potential for stress. The second is our tendency to try

    Dr Kate Middleton What do you do to chill out after a tough day? Is it as good for relaxing your mind and body as you think? Heres the good and bad sides to some common chill-outs.

    VIDeo gAmes Rough day? Shooting some zombies sure can feel like a good way to take out some frustrations. Emotionally it will help you switch off from the things inside your head, but its not so relaxing physiologically. All that adrenaline means your body is as hyped as it was to start with. So shoot away - but make sure it doesnt stop you from getting out and into the real world.

    HoT BATH Sometimes theres nothing better than to close the door on your day and soak away the tension in a nice warm bath. Or is there? Baths are great for muscle tension because the warmth of the water helps your muscles relax and unwind. But dont just lie there worrying! Take something with you to fill your mind with worry-free distractions and let the warm water do the rest.

    ALCoHoL Weve all done it - long hard day, get home and reach for the fridge. That glass of wine or bottle of beer might feel like its helping, but is it? Alcohol can help you feel more relaxed and fuel an evening out with friends but watch it long-term use of alcohol can actually increase the level of stress hormones in your body, as well as decreasing the amounts of chemicals in your brain that help you deal with emotions like anxiety. Plus alcohol changes the patterns of your sleep, meaning youll wake less refreshed and even more tired the next day. Not one to rely on.

    exeRCIse We all know were supposed to exercise to stay healthy but what role does it play in overcoming stress? In the long run, exercise helps you deal with stress better - theres even some evidence that regular exercise helps reduce your brains response to anxiety. The best stress busters are sports where you can pound out the frustration. Avoid those which require you to keep calm or controlled - play those when you are stressed out and its unlikely youll play well. And that probably wont improve your mood one bit.



    stress is about real changes in the levels of chemicals, hormones and activation in your body and brain


  • id you know that the human body wasnt designed to function under constant pressure? You are built to respond well to short term stresses. But long term stress can

    mean that the same changes, which are helpful in the short term, start to cause problems.

    The key to managing stress well is to make sure you build in regular and effective time when you can relax.

    Effective relaxation means your muscles loosen, your brain stops buzzing and your whole system gets the chance to rest.

    Its easy to think you dont have time to relax. It can be hard to stop and feel like you are not achieving anything. But relaxation could be the most important part of your week. For lots of people the thing most likely to limit how much they can do in life isnt anything to do with ability or drive its how they deal with stress.

    Love what you are doing? Want to still be doing it well in 5 years? Then learn how to relax well and make sure you build it into every week.

    1. Think of yourself standing in a pool.

    2. As stresses come in, the water

    level rises. Everyday life throws in extra

    challenges, making waves.

    4. Relaxation is like pulling the plug out in

    the pool so that your physical stress levels

    fall. As your stress hormone levels fall,

    your body responds allowing you to come

    off high alert and get back to the more

    mundane housekeep-ing jobs like digesting

    food or sleeping.

    3. Youll cope fine so long as the wa-ter level doesnt rise too high. But if it does, theres a point when youll start to feel at risk of going under.

    to pack more in. We all tend to work more, and play harder. Our boundaries between work and leisure are a lot more blurred. Work has become more fluid and portable but that means we struggle to ever get away from it. And in our 24 hour society, genuine time for relaxation that acts as a fire extinguisher for stress is much harder to come by.

    In the midst of all this, too many people hear a de-stress message that simply tells them to do less. And that will probably help. But doing less is a killer to your potential. Managing stress is about learning to handle it well so it doesnt limit what you can do. No one is superman - theres a limit to how much any of us can pack in. But stress issues shouldnt push you into becoming a couch potato.

    RELAX ?D

    Dr Kate Middletons book Stress: How to De-Stress Without Doing Less is available at amazon.co.uk


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