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Taking The Next Step

As I said in my last post, it’s now July and some of you may still be wondering what happened to those lovely New Year’s resolutions you made. Well, you are not the only one. We almost all do it. We make New Year’s resolutions to get healthy, to exercise more and to live a more happy and positive life. Then, as they say, life happens. We fall off the ball and eventually we’re right back where we started a year ago.

Sometimes it’s just a matter of losing our motivation to continue. Reaching the goal might be taking longer than we hoped or harder than we anticipated. But there are things we can do to boost our motivation along the way.

Tell other people about your goal or invite them to join you.

Work on taking small steps every day that leads you towards your goal.

Celebrate your success at preset milestones. Did you go to the gym every day this week? Then treat yourself by going out with friends and don’t be afraid to brag about your success.

Work on changing your thought patterns as you work on the new behavior. If you don’t change how you think about eating healthy, you will likely have trouble maintaining it.

Have fun and laugh at yourself when you slip. But get back on track as soon as you can.

The statistics are scary. If only eight percent of people setting New Year’s resolutions are able to achieve them, then why do so many attempt them year after year and fail? It’s not because they are lazy. Often it’s simply because we set too high a goal or try to achieve too many resolutions at once.

Achieving your goals is a lot like taking a long trip. You wouldn’t set out without a plan on how you were going to get there, where you’d be staying or even what you planned to take with you.

So when you find yourself slipping, take the time to reassess and revamp the plan on how you are going to reach that health goal. Hit the gym, turn down that piece of cake and eat less processed foods. Give yourself a reward, and then get out and do it all over again tomorrow. It’ll be worth it when you finally achieve it.

Need help reaching and keeping your goals? Just fill out the form below.
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Why We Fail

Have you stopped and looked at your calendar, your watch or your phone lately? What do you see? We are now in July, seventh months past the day you made those lovely New Year’s Resolutions. Are you still struggling to get on track with your health goals? Do you feel like you have failed? Maybe you have – so far, but that doesn’t have to be the end of your efforts. You can still achieve the level of fitness you desire. Before we go any further, let’s look at some of the reasons you are not yet where you want to be at this time of year.

• High motivation with no real plan. Those New Year’s Resolutions don’t come with instructions. We can easily say, “I’m going to lose 20 pounds this year”, but that’s only the first step. To stay motivated, you need a detailed plan and often expert advice to be more likely to succeed.
• Setting unrealistic goals. Often we set unrealistic goals, such as going cold turkey from smoking or losing 50 pounds in 6 months. We sometimes set multiple resolutions that have nothing in common (like losing weight and getting out of debt) expecting to accomplish them all simultaneously. We set our expectations too high.
• Being too tough on ourselves. We have big expectations for ourselves, and then end up having an even bigger disappointment when our progress is slower than we expected or we have an occasional setback. This can cause you to give up.
• Lack of support or accountability. Trying to stay motivated on your own is tough. We’re social beings. We do better trying to reach a goal when we have support and are being held accountable for what we do. If no one knows you’re on a diet and fast food isn’t on your approved menu, the only thing keeping you away from the fast food lane is your own self-control.

Now you know what causes you to fail at your New Year’s resolutions. Making them work involves changing your behavior, setting realistic goals, having a system for reaching the goal, and having others hold you accountable. Do you think you can do that all by yourself? Maybe not. Why not let me help you? With eighteen years’ experience as an occupational therapist, I possess the knowledge and skills to help you take control of your life and achieve your goals. Just fill in the form below to schedule a free consultation.

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National Health Care Decisions Day

Today is National Health Care Decisions Day, and according to the National Day Calendar, April 16th is the day that has been set aside to educate and empower the public to make advance planning for their healthcare. It deals primarily with the importance of having an advance directive or a living will.

 

While you may consider this something that only senior citizens should think about, one never knows what may happen in the future, so it’s never too soon to make that decision.  And while you are thinking about that, what about your present state of health? What decision can you make about your health for today?

 

Can you decide today that you are going to consume less sugar, increase your physical activity and do something that makes you feel better about yourself?

Which brings me to the second focus of this post: Orchids

What do orchids have to do with making health care decisions, you ask? Well, today is also National Orchid Day, and I think it is no accident that the two days fall on the same date, because like most plants, orchids do have some healing properties.

 

According to Orchid Care Zone, the Chinese were the first to discover the healing properties of these beautiful plants and today use it as a medicinal tea.  The flower, bulbs, stems and even the root are used for medicinal purposes. The article states that orchids are used to treat  illnesses such as asthma,   arthritis, diarrhea, fever, pimples and even cancer, to name a few.  And guess what? I just learned that vanilla extract comes from the orchid Vanilla planifolia! So now I have another reason to love orchids.

Now, I’m not a doctor, and I have never used orchids as medicine, but I love them for their beauty, their sturdiness – I haven’t repotted my orchids in a year and they keep on blooming – and the relaxing ambience they impart to my home.

 

So, even if you are wary of using orchids as medicine, why not purchase one and care for it as you would a pet?

Here are some of the benefits you will receive:

  • Improved air quality
  • Relaxed atmosphere
  • Reduced dust and airborne pollutants
  • Lower room temperature
  • A feeling of pride as you watch your orchids bloom

Do I need to say more?  Whatever healthcare decision you make today, let it include getting an orchid. You won’t regret it. Also, if you are still putting off getting a health coach, include that in your decision-making as well.

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Enjoy Better Sleep

Feeling tired, lacking in energy, can’t concentrate? Chances are you are not getting enough sleep and this can prevent you from performing your best. Apart from making you feel tired and irritable, sleep deprivation can have serious consequences, such as falling asleep on the job or while driving; slow reactions, weight loss or weight gain and memory problems. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention says sleep deprivation is a national epidemic.

Experts recommend seven to nine hours of sleep at night for adults, eight to ten for teens and nine to eleven for school-aged children.

Sleep deprivation may be due to several causes:

Emotional stress – if you are anxious or constantly worrying, you will have difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep.
Exercise – can help promote a good night’s sleep, but for some people, exercising a few hours before bedtime can make you hyperactive and prevent sleep.
Hormone imbalance – in men and women can interfere with sleep.
Schedules – work, school and other responsibilities can deprive you of much-needed sleep.
Blue light – the kind given off by electronic devices and energy-efficient light bulbs- can interfere with the body’s circadian rhythm and produce wakefulness.
Sleep apnea – a potentially dangerous sleep disorder in which a person’s breathing stops and starts during sleep. People who snore may have sleep apnea.

What can you do?

Before you reach for that bottle of sleep aid, you can try the following:

Don’t try to fight sleep. Go to bed when you feel tired.
Establish a sleep routine by going to bed at the same time each night. Your body will easily adjust.
A warm shower or bath and a cup of your favorite tea can lull you to sleep.
Have your room dark and at a nice, cool temperature. If you have electronic lights that must stay on, cover them up.
Quit worrying. Practice relaxation techniques and deep breathing to calm and relax your body and mind. Prayer and meditation also help.
Avoid scary movies at nights.
Avoid exercising just before bedtime.

If after following these tips you still cannot enjoy a good night’s sleep, you may need to see your doctor to determine the cause of the problem. But don’t wait too long. Sleep deprivation can seriously impact your overall health in a negative way, so take action today.
And remember, proper sleep is an important part of wellness. If you are sleep deprived and need help overcoming this problem, why not sign up for a free health coaching consultation and let me help you get the rest you need.

This is an affiliate link, meaning if you click on it and make a purchase, I will receive a commission.

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Wednesday Wisdom – Do Something Different

Hi everyone, it’s the second  Wednesday of the year. How is it going so far? What are you doing today to help you move toward your goals for 2018? I’m not just talking about health goals. I’m talking about any type of goal – relationships, work, health, spiritual, whatever.

When you wake up each morning, what goal do you have in mind for that day? Notice I said goal, not plan. You may plan to go to work today, and after work you may go to the gym. Yay! But those are plans, not goals. Your goal would be something you hope to accomplish. For example, I will walk 1 mile in 30 mins, 3 times a week.

If you get up this morning and decide to go for a walk without having a Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Time-bound (SMART) goal in mind, then you are not doing something different, and chances are, you will not stay on target.

So today, I challenge you – do something different. You don’t exercise? Go for a short walk. Eat something different. You are not used to eating fish? Try it. Don’t like drinking water? Drink one glass. After work you collapse in front of the TV? Try reading a book instead, or listen to some music. Do Something Different.

Will you?

This morning I read an article online about this woman who was talked into buying a 2-day health coaching program for a couple thousand dollars. Ridiculous, right? But this person says it happened to her. If you decide to do something different and sign up for my health coaching program, you won’t pay anything close to that, not even for 12 sessions, which is what I recommend you sign up for. And the consultation is free.

So, what are you waiting for? Do Something Different Today to bring your weight, diabetes, high blood pressure, pain and stress under control. When you fill in the form below, I will let you know how you can arrange for a free consultation with me.  Until next time, get up off that couch!

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What Your Next Step Is

It’s only the first week in the New Year, and the weight loss industry has not wasted any time. Weight loss and exercise commercials are flooding the TV screen faster than the rain that has been falling here in South Florida. And like the rain, it’s difficult to ignore them. Especially if you know you over-indulged during the holidays and/or you need to lose a few – more than a few – pounds. So, which of those companies are you going to go with?

As I said before, I’m not one for making New Year’s resolutions, but if you like making them and can follow through, by all means go ahead. But, statistics show that 75% of all New Year’s resolutions end in failure. This is not to alarm or discourage you. It’s just to show you what you are letting yourself in for when you choose to go that route.

So, what should you do? Only you can decide, but if you know you are not able to slay that dragon alone, then why not enlist the help of a health coach at the beginning of the year so you can start on the right foot. This is not to say you shouldn’t enroll in a weight-loss plan. Just remember, your ultimate goal should be achieving optimum health and not losing weight so you can squeeze into a smaller size jeans.

Or maybe you don’t need to lose weight. Maybe you are at your ideal weight, but you are experiencing emotional problems related to stress. Or you are struggling with diabetes or other health concerns. If any of these apply to you, please fill in the form below and let’s have a talk. With eighteen years as an occupational therapist working with physically and mentally-disabled patients, I have a lot to offer.

This is a new year. Take control. Don’t put it off any longer.  When you fill in the form below, I will get back to you quickly and I will let you know how I can help you. God bless.

Do you suffer from type 2 diabetes? Would you like to know how to control or even reverse your diabetes through proper diet and exercise? Then fill out the form below for a free discovery session. Contact me.

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The Benefits of Exercise

I’d like to share this article that I wrote for the Wellness Universe, a group that I’m a part of. The article supports what I’ve been saying about the benefits of exercise since I started this blog. Read and enjoy!

And don’t forget to sign up for my mailing list to receive updates and special offers. Also, if you would like to arrange for a free coaching consultation, please state that in the form below. [contact-form][contact-field label=”Name” type=”name” required=”true” /][contact-field label=”Email” type=”email” required=”true” /][contact-field label=”Website” type=”url” /][contact-field label=”Message” type=”textarea” /][/contact-form]

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How to Incorporate Exercise into Your Daily Lifestyle


Studies have shown that daily exercise can improve not just your appearance but your overall health and well being. However, having a daily exercise routine can be difficult depending on your lifestyle and your state of health. If you are new to exercising or you haven’t done it for a while, the best way to begin incorporating exercise into your life is to begin with small steps.
• Set your mind to the idea of moving more. Remind your body to get more movement every day by standing more or taking the stairs more often. Other ways to get more movement in are to do stretches in your chair, squat to pick something up from the floor or park farther away from the door.

• Move more. Find ways to move more in your regular daily activity.

You don’t have to join a gym or do anything strenuous. Just make sure you increase your physical activity so you burn those calories – if you want to lose weight. The key is to keep it simple.

In my next post, I will show you more ways you can include exercise into your daily lifestyle for optimum health.

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National Call Your Doctor Day

In checking through my email last night, I saw this message from The National Day Calendar that today is “National Call Your Doctor” Day. Now I haven’t called my doctor in a while so I thought I’d read the post to see why I should call the man in the white coat. According to the site, today, the second Tuesday in June is a day set aside by Bright Pink, a woman’s health non-profit, for young women to call their doctor and schedule their annual Well-Woman Exam.

As women, we make all kinds of appointments: hair dresser, manicure and pedicure, massage etc. Even pet grooming gets priority. Why not take a few minutes to schedule an appointment for something that can save you months, maybe years, of illness later on?

Other reasons why you should schedule a Well-Woman visit?

1. Like I said above, it can save you years of illness later on. It may even save your life. Years ago during my annual exam, my OB/GYN discovered I had abnormal cells. Had I waited a little longer, they would have become cancerous.
2. Establishing rapport with your doctor. Health care, thankfully, is becoming all-embracing. You don’t just go to your doctor when you have a cold or some ache or pain. During your well-woman visit, You should ask questions and voice your concerns so your doctor will know what else he should screen you for. Weight gain or loss, stress, fatigue, all of these can be discussed with your doctor.
3. It’s free. Under the Affordable Care Act, a well-woman visit comes under preventative care and therefore carries no out-of-pocket costs. So when you call to schedule, today, be sure to say you’re coming for a well-woman exam.

Now remember, when you schedule that exam, you are not just doing it for yourself, but also for those you love. So pick up your phone and call today. And when you finish calling, call your BFF or family member and make sure they do the same.

Need more information? Here are some helpful resources:
Healthcare.gov

Home


http://www.health.gov/nhic/
http://www.cdc.gov/wisewoman/faqs.htm

Do you have health concerns you would like to discuss with someone? Why not fill in the form below and let’s talk about it?
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Mental vs Behavioral Health

May is mental health month, and as I thought about what I should write in this post, I felt confused. Well, it is mental health month after all, but for someone who worked in a mental (behavioral) health unit for over ten years I should have no difficulty discerning between the two. And yet, when I think of mental vs behavioral health, I see the faces of some of my patients – some alert, others flat, still others inappropriately animated. Many of them have coexisting conditions, either substance abuse disorders and/or chronic illnesses such as diabetes or high blood pressure. How do you address these problems?

MentalHealth.gov states that “mental health includes our emotional, psychological, and social well-being.” It goes on to state that mental illness affects your thinking, mood and behavior. Does that mean then that if a person can change his behavior he could become well? Not exactly. Someone suffering from bipolar does need to learn to modify her behavior, but until she gets her mania and depression under control with medication, we will see little or no change in her behavior. This is why doctors recommend a combination of medication and therapy or counseling.

Many times, a hospital stay is inadequate to make a significant impact on a person’s performance. Continued counseling or coaching is needed to help the person benefit fully from treatment. In my practice, I can help you make those lifestyle changes that will help you deal with depression, anxiety and stress.

In this month of May, the emphasis is on mental health. If you have been struggling with the disorders mentioned above for a long time, now is the time to take control. Fill out the form below and arrange for a free consultation. I will be happy to hear from you.

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A diagnosis of type 2 diabetes can send your life into a tailspin. It can leave you feeling alone and overwhelmed, but it doesn’t have to. Join my type 2 diabetes network group and get the help and support you need.