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The woman behind the Sunshine Experiment

by Heather Ramsay-Focusing attention on our heart's desires is the key to the Sunshine Experiment, says Rosie Quigley, the woman many islanders are crediting for the warmer September days.So who is Ms Quigley and how did her experiment come about? The Observer looks at the energy force behind the "Yes, yes, yes" sunshine.Ms Quigley, who has lived in Port Clements for 17 years, says the Sunshine Experiment was inspired by a course she took over the past year about becoming a life coach.A life coach is someone a person can call when they have a goal in mind, but need help in finding ways to reach it. For example, says Ms Quigley, if someone wants to meet the man of her dreams or make a major career change, she can help them by focusing the person's attention. "We would come up with an action plan for you to take," she says. One of the keys to succeeding in your goals, she says, is tapping into the invisible helping hands of the universe. She says there is a habit of attraction in the universe; meaning energy exuded toward a goal will be brought back to you.The important thing, says Ms Quigley, is rather than putting attention on things we don't want, we should be focusing on our heart's desire."We are not always conscious of where we're putting our focus," she says.Of course, she had a personal motivation in wanting to see more sunshine in September.Ms Quigley makes flower girl cards with daisy and pansy faces and leaf and petal dresses. The flower girls are glued onto glass, photographed and turned into cards which local businesses sell.But this summer's grey skies and cooler temperatures were having an impact on her flower crop. "The garden was a disaster this year," she said.Not only did she hope for more flowers, but Ms Quigley knew of another experiment where people are meditating to create world peace. According to Lynn McTaggart's website, the intention experiment is part of a series of scientifically controlled, web-based experiments testing the power of intention to change the physical world.She was intrigued by this, but wanted to involve not only those who are already practicing meditation, but people who haven't been "converted" too."I wanted to get the whole community involved," she said. "Anything is possible if there is enough of us to join forces."And by all accounts, it seems to be working. But even if it wasn't, Ms Quigley says "if it makes us feel better, that's important." Not only has there been more sunshine, but, she says, the experiment has awakened the joy in her life. "I was coming out of the bathroom and I heard my husband repeating the mantra and we burst out laughing. It's put a lot more joy into the house."And for Ms Quigley, who has spent the last 15 years struggling with illnesses including chronic fatigue syndrome, that's essential. She says she is now getting well. "I feel like a butterfly coming out of a cocoon."