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Align yourself with self-love

Align yourself with self-love

We are busy. We do all the things that need to get done: for work, around the house, maintaining the cars, do, do, do. Then we are asked to volunteer: at church, at the kids’ school, … When is it our turn: meditate, take a walk, curl up with a good book? The answer is never. Others look to us to see how we treat ourselves. If we are apologetic about taking time out for ourselves, others will be more than happy to pile on the requests and expectations. It is said if you want to get something done, give it to a busy person. And so it is. A busy person is more often willing to say yes to yet another task and is less likely to think of themselves and the downtime they so desperately need. They go, go, go until the body steps in and says enough. Then they come down with a cold or some other ailment to slow them down. Even then, there is little rest for the weary. Got to power through it and get everything done on that do to list.

Is this the life you lead? Is this the life you want to lead? What would it take to slow down and build in a commitment to yourself to give yourself some downtime? Downtime comes in many shades. It might mean an extra hour of sleep, or a mid-afternoon nap on a weekend. It could be curling up with a good book in front of the fireplace for a couple of hours. It might mean taking 15 minutes a day to start your day with prayer or meditation. It might mean at the end of the day writing in a gratitude journal. Or it might mean making time each week for a hobby or something artistic or creative.

For something more luxurious take a nice warm bubble bath, light some scented candles and have a glass of wine and may be a book. Or go get a massage.

The important thing is to schedule time for self-love. It may be challenging at first, but with practice it can become a way of life. First you train yourself, then you teach others how you want to be treated. Make your self-love time sacred, keeping your commitment to love yourself above all.

Next Step:

Decide what self-loving act you would like to do first. Then schedule it into your calendar as a firm commitment this week. Let others know that you will be unavailable during that time. Start small so you can feel successful when you have given yourself this act of self-love.

If you want more ideas on acts of self-love, here is a website with more ideas: http://www.abundancetapestry.com/70-ways-for-self-care/

 

Contact me: 

To determine if coaching with Edith can help you achieve a better life balance, schedule a complimentary coaching consultation. Call her now at 847-913-3900.

How do You Get More Resilience?

How do You Get More Resilience?

Resilience is the capacity to easily recover from or adjust to misfortune or change.

Since we are living in a fast changing world, it is to our advantage to build our resilience. So – how do you get more resilience?

There are several ways to increase resilience.

1. Good Relationships With Family  

Good relationships with family members provide you with a safety net. More and more households are living with two adult generations under one roof. This is often a stressful situation but it also provides several benefits. House-sharing with elderly parents can provide built in child care. For the elderly parents it provides safety when a medical emergency occurs. When adult children move back home with their parents, it can be a significant saving to recover from financial hardship. The proximity can be a challenge but it isn’t even an option when there is a rift between family members.

2. Close Friends

A small circle of close friends provide mutual support. They can be a listening ear, or a shoulder to cry on or help out in a pinch.

3. A Community

Being part of one or more communities can be a life saver. A couple of examples follow: A young woman had no close relatives but she was active in her church. When she unexpectedly lost her job, her church community pulled together for her. To save money the young woman gave up her apartment. Several church members stored her furniture and belongings in their basements. Then people with an extra bedroom in their home offered to let her stay with free room and board in their home for a month each. This community support helped save her from going bankrupt and helped her get back on her feet.

Another example: A retired schoolteacher became an avid photographer. She joined a local photography club and became active in the amateur photography community and its leadership. She learned and then taught others about photography. When she ended up in a car accident that left her wheelchair bound for many months, many jumped in to help. Some gave her rides to appointments, others ran errands like grocery shopping and the like, others brought companionship to this homebound photographer. All this made the long months of recovery much more bearable.

4. Ask for Help

In order for the young woman and the photographer to get help, they had to let people know about their difficulty and ask for help. They also had to be gracious about the generosity extended to them. I was particularly amazed at the asking skills of the photographer. Though many offered to help her, she was wise enough to find out what each individual enjoyed doing already. Then she asked for help that most fit in with the lives of those who offered. I was lucky enough to have a vehicle that could easily accommodate her and her wheelchair and I was able to bring her to photography club meetings. I really enjoyed the conversations and what I learned from her during those car trips. With my help she was able to get out of her condo at least once per month.

5. Set Goals

While the photographer was wheelchair bound she could not pursue her photography hobby. So she focused on another part of her photography. She organized the many photos she had taken, selected prints to be displayed, created slideshows she could present at future meetings, and found opportunities to sell her beautiful photographs. And she did it in the company of fellow photographers who provided companionship.

When adversity strikes it is important to have goals and to regularly take actions to achieve them.

6. Understanding That Setbacks Are Part of Life

Many of us have gone through setbacks, be it losing a job, health issues, natural disasters, loss of a family member or divorce. Those who are resilient are more likely to work through the difficult times, and move on from there. Believe that whatever difficulties you encounter, you have the strength to move on and rebuild your life.

7. Problem Solving Skills

When problems present themselves, learn to break the problems down into small and manageable steps. Then take the steps, one at a time.

8. Understand That All Things Are Temporary

Each day brings new challenges. Some are good and some are painful. Savor and be grateful for the good things that come your way. It makes the difficult times more bearable knowing that they will become less painful over time. Resilience doesn’t make challenges go away. It simply helps us rebound more quickly and with less pain.

Next Steps

If you are facing a challenge, don’t do it alone. Reach out. Support is out there. But also realize what strength you have, what challenges you have already overcome, and that you can overcome the current challenge as well.

If life has got you down and you are feeling excessive anxiety or depression, seek professional help.

If life is good to you, reach out to others and strengthen your communities. Reach out to others who need help and volunteer your time.

Contact me:

To determine if coaching can help you achieve your goals, schedule a free coaching consultation. Call Edith at 847.913.3900.

Two Yummy Vegetable Side Dishes

Two Yummy Vegetable Side Dishes

Today I’ll share with you two yummy and easy to make side dishes.

Roasted Cauliflower

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Wash the cauliflower and cut it into little florets. Spread them out on a cookie tray.
  3. Generously drizzle on olive oil,
  4. then sprinkle salt and
  5. garlic powder on the florets.
  6. Put in the oven for about 30 minutes.

Watch the video at http://youtu.be/-11gmhGWits

Roasted Sweet Potatoes

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Thoroughly scrub 2 potatoes (no need to peel).
  3. Cut the potatoes into wedges and spread them out on a cookie sheet.
  4. Drizzle on olive oil,
  5. Then sprinkle on salt,
  6. Paprika and
  7. Rosemary
  8. Put in the oven for about 30 minutes.

I’ll often put one tray of each in the oven at the same time. If combining both recipes, set the oven to 350 degrees and put the potatoes in the oven first for about 10 minutes, and then add the cauliflower and leave both in for 30 more minutes.

These side dishes are easy to make, and add a nice touch to any hearty meal or diet.

 

Contact me:

To determine if coaching can help you achieve your goals, schedule a free coaching consultation. Call Edith at 847.913.3900. Isn’t it about time you invested in you and your goals?

Sleep Your Excess Weight Away and Other Tricks

Sleep Your Excess Weight Away and Other Tricks

Wouldn’t it be nice to go to sleep and wake up the next morning at our ideal weight? While those kinds of results are best left to fairy tales, getting enough healthy sleep can help with weight loss. And there are other weight loss tricks as well that are often ignored.

Sleeping:

The researchers wrote in the commentary, published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal (September 17, 2012), “An accumulating body of evidence suggests that sleeping habits should not be overlooked when prescribing a weight-reduction program to a patient with obesity.”

In two of the studies cited in the commentary, study participants decreased the amount of calories they consumed and either slept 8.5 hours or 5.5 hours. The group that slept less, lost less weight.

Thermogenics (Heat Production):

We have two kinds of fat: white fat (WAT) and brown fat (BAT). The WAT is what we usually store as fat. The BAT on the other hand burns fat when stimulated. Exposing the body to cold temperatures, stimulates the BAT to burn glucose to keep the body warm. And once the fat burning machine is set in motion, it may keep burning fat for a while, even though the cold stimulus is gone. Cold exposure also increases your BAT fat. Ray Cronise from NASA has done research on how to increase the body’s thermal load to lose weight. http://hypothermics.com/home/ . Here are some ways to stimulate the body to burn excess fat through cold exposure.

  • Cold showers:

Start with a comfortably warm shower, and then slowly turn the water to cold. Stay under the cold shower for 2 – 3 minutes. For more benefits of cold showers see http://philanthropy2012.hubpages.com/hub/10-benefits-of-cold-showers

  • Ice packs:

Place an ice pack on the back of your neck for 20 – 30 minutes, preferably in the evening.

 

  • Drink Ice Water:

Drink a liter of ice water first thing in the morning.

  • Eat, Swim, Sleep:

According to Michael Phelps, he eats over 12,000 calories per day when in training. Besides that, he swims and sleeps. Period. So if you work out with incredibly high intensity, in your average 82-degree pool, eat mounds of food and sleep, you’ll have to worry about not getting enough to eat to keep up your energy:) Check out what Phelps eats for breakfast: http://blogs.wsj.com/health/2008/08/13/the-michael-phelps-diet-dont-try-it-at-home/

Why this matters:

Many find that the last few pounds are the hardest to lose. Caloric restriction and exercise just aren’t enough. Ray Cronise found that when you add thermal loading, that is, exposing the body to cold, it is easier to lose those last pesky pounds.

Contact me: 

Many people struggle to take the steps they know they need to take. As a coach I can help you clarify what’s most important and offer support and accountability so you make important changes in your life. Think about the life you could have. To schedule a free coaching consultation, call Edith at 847.913.3900. Isn’t it about time you invested in you and your goals?

Which Diet is Right For You?

Which diet is right for you?

There are many types of diets: diets to lose weight, diets to gain weight or strength, diets for heart health or to control blood pressure, diets for diabetics or to control cholesterol. U. S. News & World Report Magazine ranks the most effective diets that have been studied. Their ranking is based on those diets, where studies are available. Many diets are not on the list. The slow-carb diet that I have followed for the last month is not on their list. That doesn’t make it bad, just that any studies on its effectiveness were not included. In the end, the diet that you can stick to and that achieves the desired result is the one you should follow.

Here are some of the winners among diets:

Best overall diets were the DASH diet and the TLC diet.

Best weight loss diets were Weight Watchers and Biggest Loser.

Best diabetes diets were Biggest Loser and the Dash diet.

Best heart health diets were the Ornish diet and the TLC diet.

For more information go to http://health.usnews.com/best-diet

One of the keys to sticking with a diet is whether you have a support system. Weight Watchers has weekly meetings and weigh ins. It provides support and sharing with others who have the same goals.

Why even a little weight loss matters:

The article “Battling Belly Fat” (AARP Bulletin July-August 2012) states that there are 2 types of fat: subcutaneous fat (under the skin) and visceral or belly fat (surrounding your organs). The bad stuff is the fat surrounding your organs. It is also the easiest to lose and the first to go. “Numerous studies show a correlation between a large waist and a higher risk of death – even among people who are not overweight.” “Visceral fat actually secretes hormones and lipids – such as triglycerides – that are harmful to the body, says David Cummings, M.D., professor of medicine at the University of Washington Medical School.” “A John Hopkins University study of people with large bellies (over 35 inches for women and over 40 inches for men) found the group that ate a healthy low-carb diet lost both more pounds and more belly fat than the group on a low-fat diet.”

Taking it Further:

If you have visceral fat, check out some of the diets mentioned at this link: http://health.usnews.com/best-diet/best-weight-loss-diets. Watch what you eat and start substituting healthier low-carb foods into your day.

Consider keeping an “eating journal”. It’ll help you understand when you eat, especially between meals. What are your eating/snacking triggers? What were you doing just before you felt that sudden hunger even though you ate recently? What emotions were you feeling when you had that snack attack? Did you fill your plate too full and finished every last bite anyways? Just becoming aware can start you on your way to finding healthier behaviors for some of those eating (or drinking) attacks.

 

Contact me:

Many people struggle to take the steps they know they need to take. As a coach I can help you clarify what’s most important and offer support and accountability so you make important changes in your life. Think about the life you could have. To schedule a free coaching consultation, call Edith at 847.913.3900. Isn’t it about time you invested in you and your goals?

Selective Eating for your Health: It’s a Journey – Part III – Addicted to Sugar?

Selective Eating for your Health: It’s a Journey – Part III – Addicted to Sugar?

During week one of my selective eating journey I ran into several challenges and doubts about my ability to stick to a diet. One is worth special mention: withdrawal from sugar addiction.

The diet I have chosen to follow is the slow-carb diet described in the book, “The 4-hour Body” by Timothy Ferriss. I am working on eliminating foods from my diet that are quickly converted to energy in my body, such as cereal, breads, pasta, and of course sugary items such as candies, soda and the like. I didn’t feel well and someone suggested that I might be suffering withdrawal symptoms from sugar addiction. So I researched it. Here is what I found.

Sugar Addiction Symptoms

From the website http://lifestyle.iloveindia.com/lounge/addiction-to-sugar-555.html

  • If ever you manage to go a day without having sweet nothings, you start obsessing about the same.
  • Whenever you feel sad, you start eating foods with high sugar content.
  • You become defensive when somebody suggests that you are having too much of sugar.
  • You cannot go even a single day without having something sweet to eat.
  • You cannot sit for too long without munching on ‘sweetables’.
  • You eat high-sugar foods like candy, chocolates and cakes every day or even too many times a day.
  • You often feel lethargic, moody or depressed.
  • You start feeling uncomfortable around the same time every day and your answer to this is grabbing a high-sugar snack.

From the website http://www.webmd.com/diet/ss/slideshow-sugar-addiction

Sugar fuels every cell in the brain and influences brain chemicals, too.  And overloading on sugary foods may alter the brain receptors that regulate how much we eat. In laboratory studies, rats that binged on sugar had brain changes that mimicked those of drug withdrawal. In humans, just seeing pictures of milkshakes triggered brain activity similar to what’s seen in drug addicts.

Sugar Withdrawal Symptoms

From the website http://www.wikihow.com/Get-Through-Sugar-Withdrawal

Sugar cravings are the simplest of the many different sugar withdrawal symptoms, which can include headaches, lethargy, emotional distress, anger and even nausea.

From the website http://lifestyle.iloveindia.com/lounge/addiction-to-sugar-555.html

One of the clearest signs of sugar addiction is that you feel incredibly uncomfortable when you try to cut back your sugar intake. You may experience uncomfortable sensations like nausea, fatigue, headaches, irritability, anxiety, and moodiness – these are all withdrawal symptoms, which simply means that your body is craving a substance it is used to having.

Do’s and Don’ts

The advice on what to do to curb sugar addiction is quite varied, but it is clear that some withdrawal symptoms will need to be endured. But stabilizing blood sugar levels has many health benefits, including reducing risks of obesity, heart disease and diabetes.

Don’ts Do’s Reason
Don’t skip breakfast Eat a protein laden breakfast within an hour of waking Protein stabilizes blood sugar.

By eating soon after waking, the body doesn’t go into starvation mode.

Don’t drink diet sodas Drink plenty of water Diet sodas cause the liver to spend time on eliminating bad stuff instead of burning fat.
Don’t go cold turkey Eliminate sugar and highly processed foods gradually Rapid withdrawal is likely to cause cravings that willpower can’t overcome.
Don’t eat snacks between meals Eat a meal about every 4 hours Eating regular meals is healthier than the many tempting snack foods that are laden with sugar or fats

Call to Action:

Some say we take better care of our cars than our bodies. Yet we can buy a new car, but we only have one body. Don’t you want to feel healthy and fit for as long as possible? A little investment in healthy eating habits can make a big difference in how you feel.

Taking it Farther

The website http://www.beyonddiet.com/Landing?rdrtrk=3288843

has an introductory video with lots of good advice, including the 5 foods to avoid eating: orange juice, sugar substitutes, breads (breads, muffins, cookies, cereal, and even pasta), hydrogenated butter substitutes, and processed soy products. Go to the website and hear what Isabel has to say about these “bad for you” foods and what to eat instead. If this advice appeals to you, her diet plan and her many easy recipes may be worth investing in.

Contact me:

If you have trouble following a diet and sticking with it, call Edith at 847.913.3900 for a free life coaching consultation.

Selective Eating for Your Health: It’s a Journey – Part II

Growing Emotionally Healthier While Eating Selectively

This is an exploration of how memories and beliefs we formed earlier in life can negatively impact how successful we are in achieving our current goals. Examples in this article are from my journey of following the advice in the book “The 4-Hour Body” by Timothy Ferriss. But this isn’t about me. These examples are here to help you see how your own past can derail you and what you can do about it. By identifying current blocks and their link to a past memory or belief, their hold on us can simply dissipate. I hope these examples help you on your journey toward your goals.

One of the suggestions in Mr. Ferriss’ book is to start slowly. For a week, follow his “slow-carb” diet only at breakfast. Well, on that first day I felt like gagging all day. When exploring this with my “coach”, it traced back to a childhood event where I was told to eat something most unpleasant. Working through that scenario, I released the emotional hold it still had over me. So I almost derailed at breakfast on day one.

Somewhere around day two I developed an intense craving for soda, which I normally drink very rarely and which is not allowed. Working with my “coach” I was able to unearth a memory of another childhood event where my mother drank soda on occasion but I wasn’t allowed to have any. After releasing this memory, the craving lessened substantially.

On day three I became quite sad and despondent wondering if I could stick with this diet for a week, let alone for a whole month as I had planned. Again working with my “coach” I discovered that there was a childhood memory associated linking receiving food I liked with love from a parent. So, depriving myself of some of the foods I liked felt like being unloved. Wow, I was beginning to see that I have a lot of emotional baggage associated with food. I recommitted to resolving my food related issues and sticking with this diet for at least a month. Following the diet was harder than I had expected, but I approached each meal as if it was the only meal on the diet. Each meal I started over doing my best to follow Mr. Ferriss’ recommendations as closely as I felt able.

By day 4 I felt bored with the foods I had been eating and felt that I couldn’t possibly stick with eating the same few foods much longer.  Working through this issue with my “coach” I remembered that I had been a good cook when I was younger, but after repeated ridicule had taken on the belief that I couldn’t cook. I also discovered that somehow I had come to believe that I didn’t deserve to spend time on cooking meals for myself. Once I realized this, I took some time to search for “slow-carb” recipes online and expanded my choices with tasty and easy to make dishes. More importantly, I was more than halfway through the week and was working through my issues as they arose. Each issue I clear up will be one less issue holding me back from a healthy weight – for the rest of my life.

I hope that these examples from my own experience will help you become aware of your own struggles and how, by recognizing the origins, you can let go of the emotion associated with old memories and beliefs.

Call to Action:

If you have an unhealthy weight, I encourage you to work through any emotional issues you have around food. Once you resolve them, they will no longer have a grip on you, and you will naturally and effortlessly adhere to a healthier weight. Willpower can only take you so far, but in the end your unconscious emotions and beliefs are likely to take over and ruin even your best efforts. If you have unsuccessfully dieted before, get off the yo-yo and take control of all that is holding you back. You are worth it.

Taking it Farther:

Check out the Internet or the public library for a diet that works for you. I am currently following the diet from the book www.fourhourbody.com.

Contact me:

Do you have trouble following a diet and sticking with it? Are the goals reasonable and you still can’t do it? Have you checked with a doctor to see if there are medical reasons for an unhealthy weight? May be life coaching can help you let go of self-sabotaging behaviors or unconscious beliefs around food, and help you achieve your goals. For a free consultation call Edith at 847.913.3900

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