3 Reasons You're Stuck in Diet Mentality and How to Break Free

Have you ever wondered why you are stuck switching between diets? Do you wish you could break free of the dieting cycle but you're not sure how? I've got you covered. I'm going to share with you 3 common reasons I see that keep women stuck in diet mentality and 3 ways to shift those thoughts so you can break free.

Diet mentality. It's easy to fall into this trap.

Here's a typical scenario. You desire to lose 15 pounds so you go on a diet that your friend recommended. It's trendy, it's popular and everyone seems to be doing it. You lose the 15 pounds following the plan. You make a resolve to stick with "the plan" as much as you possibly can.

But then... life happens. You go on vacation and overindulge in everything you weren't allowed to have on your diet plan. You come home and resolve to do better but it's so difficult to get back on track. Several months go by and you've now not only put back on the original 15  and an additional 5 more. You're now on the hunt for your next diet plan so you can lose the excess 20 pounds.

This is one example of diet mentality and having this mindset will keep you stuck in a yo-yo diet cycle. 

How to break free from diet mentality

Diet mentality teaches you to label foods as good and bad. It teaches you to follow a list of rules that don't necessarily fit into your lifestyle. It teaches you that the only way to lose weight is to follow a strict diet plan. 

Freedom comes when you can break away from diet mentality, ditch the cycle of yo-yo dieting and really learn how to nourish your body the way it deserves. 

Here are 3 reasons you may still be stuck in diet mentality and 3 ways you can break free. 

 

You're stuck because you don't see food for what it is.


You have grown accustomed to labeling foods as good or bad. You might even be putting foods into a "cheat" category.  While it's true that certain foods provide more nourishment than others, it's best to break away from labeling. What happens when you do indulge in something on your "cheat" list -- feelings of guilt, shame and failure usually follow along. My question to you is, "Is this productive?" The short answer is no, it isn't. 


How to break free from this: See food for what it is. Food is the tool God gave you to nourish your body. Food isn't your enemy, it's not your friend, it's not your comforter. Food isn't inherently good or bad. When you learn to separate some of the emotion around food, which we all have, it's much easier to gain a sense of control over it.  I have previously talked about how to never cheat on your diet again. You can click here to check that out. 

Just to clarify, when I say food is not your comforter, I don't intend to imply that food is not comforting. In fact, just the opposite. Food can be quite comforting. The problem becomes when you create a reliance on food for a continual source of comfort. It will be well worth your time to find non food sources of comfort. A few I have found to be helpful are reading my Bible and spending time in prayer, exercise, go outside for a walk with my kids, or talk to a friend on the phone.

You're stuck because you are being overly restrictive around food.

When you put too many things in the no category, it may make them seem more enticing to you. Instead of thinking on what you can't have, think on what you can have.

How to break free from this: When I work privately with a woman who has a long history of yo-yo dieting, one thing we do at the beginning of our time together is to remove restrictions around food. Nothing is truly off the table, literally and figuratively. She can have anything she wants. However, I do teach her to ask herself a few questions before taking a bite of anything.

  1. Am I actually hungry?

  2. What I am hungry for?

  3. Do I really want this?

What is often discovered is how often she might be eating something when she's not even hungry, she might be eating something she    doesn't even want simply to satisfy a social norm (think office gathering or a similar social situation). The other thing that usually comes            up is my client will realize she doesn't know how to answer the first question. She doesn't really know when she's feeling true hunger.                  This is all part of breaking away from diet mentality. It allows you to get in touch with your body's true hunger cues. Then you learn to                  honor that.

 

You're stuck because you're more focused on the numbers than on whole food nutrition.


While it's true that you need to be in a calorie deficit to lose weight, I don't believe this means being overly obsessive with numbers. Sometimes counting calories or tracking macros can be helpful. It can help give you an idea of how much you're actually consuming. A lot of times we underestimate how much we are eating.

However, I view tracking as a temporary thing. When your diet plan becomes all about the numbers you just might end up consuming a lot of foods that aren't nourishing to your body.  Reminder, we're not labeling foods here as good or bad, but we are recognizing that certain foods provide the body proper nourishment and fuel while others provide little nutritional value and only satisfy a craving or desire. 

How to break free from this: Focus on giving your body lots of whole food nutrition. Shift the focus to eating real food, rather than items from a box. Two things will happen here. One, you will start to feel more energized, lighter and more satisfied. Focusing on whole food nutrition allows you to get more of the vitamins and nutrients you need. Not all packaged foods are bad per say, but next time you're in the grocery store, or maybe in your pantry in your house, turn a few boxes over and read the ingredient label. It may surprise you. The other thing that happens here is you will naturally start to crave the junk less. Remember, no foods are off the table. If you really want an Oreo you can have it. However, the more whole food nutrition you eat, the less tasty the Oreo will become. What I see happen with my clients, is they find they no longer crave the old foods. There are still no restrictions around it if they really want it they can go have it. But they want it less or not at all.

Diet mentality keeps you stuck. As long as you are in this state of mind, you will always be looking for the next great diet. Freedom comes when you learn to nourish your body well, honor your true hunger cues and make peace with food. The greatest book on the planet tells us

                                          What has been is what will be,
                                                     and what has been done is what will be done,
                                                                            and there is nothing new under the sun. Ecclesiastes 1:9 


This is no less true in the world of dieting. Most trendy, fad diets are actually older diets that have been re-named. Don't fall for the hype. 



Links to other posts you may want to read

Posted in Nutrition, Wellness. Tagged as dieting, diets, weight loss.

Beyond Willpower - How to Succeed With Your Weight Loss Goals

"If I just had more willpower, I'd be successful."

I have heard this numerous times in my coaching practice. I've said this before myself and I bet you have probably said this yourself.

It's a common misconception that your lack of success is due to your lack of willpower. 



In the world of traditional "dieting" this might be true. Diets in the traditional sense rely heavily on your strength of willpower. This is due to the fact that diets rarely address nutritional needs. Cutting out carbs, for example, won't meet your nutritional needs. Your body actually needs them so it craves them  -- your body is telling YOU to eat the carbs. Your diet is telling you not to eat the carbs. Enter the power struggle. Willpower matters a great deal in this situation.

Another example, would be following a 1,200 calorie diet in an effort to drop weight. (I strongly discourage this by the way. You'll be in for a huge backfire if you take this route). The problem with a 1,200 calorie diet is for most of us that number is too low. If you follow this strict caloric intake, you will be hungry. . . all. the. time! Again, following this type of a strict diet requires lots of willpower.

I know I would have an incredibly difficult time following either of these options. In both of these scenarios you're setting yourself up for failure and disappointment.

Fortunately, there are lots of ways to be successful in this arena without extremely reducing your caloric intake or cutting out all carbs.

First, make sure you are following a plan that addresses all of your nutritional needs. This is where working with a coach one on one can be a wise investment.



Here are 3 tips you can start implementing today to help ensure your success:

1. Access Your Physical Environment: Open up your pantry, refrigerator and freezer. Is your kitchen set up to help you reach your weight loss and health goals or is it set up for self-sabotage? Take note of foods in your home that are no longer serving your goals. Common examples might be potato chips, ice-cream, cookies, etc. It isn't that you won't ever eat these items again. However, you are much more likely to consume foods that are in your home, readily accessible.

The simple truth is you can't eat what isn't there. Rather than toss these items out, simply don't purchase them again. Instead, replace them with nourishing, life-giving foods. For the potato chips you might swap those with canned chickpeas. When you roast these with olive oil, sea salt and garlic they can really satisfy a chip craving! For the ice-cream, maybe you swap those with a fruit sweetened treat. You might also decide that you really don't have the desire for frozen treats and only ever ate the ice-cream because it was in the house. When I go through this process with my clients, many of them realize they don't miss the old food items at all.

Set your kitchen up for success. Let your kitchen work for you, rather than against you. If you have family members who show resistance to this exercise, consider giving them a designated cabinet in the kitchen. By storing those food items in a separate place, you'll be less likely to reach for them. Out of sight, out of mind.

2. Crowding Out Effect: Start by incorporating more nutrient dense foods into your diet. Your body is smart. It will continue to tell you are hungry until it gets the nutrition it needs. This is why, among other reasons, you can consume a 1500 calorie fast food meal and feel hungry again in an hour.  Perhaps it's enough calories to satisfy your entire daily need, but there is very little nutritional value. By including foods rich in nutrition, vitamins, minerals and fiber, you'll naturally feel fuller for longer. Keep this simple -- think minimally processed whole grains, dark leafy greens, nuts, seeds, etc.

3. Distraction: Let's face it. Sometimes you eat out of boredom.... or procrastination....or due to stress. We all do! It's a reality of the world we live in. This is where having distractions can be beneficial. Learn to recognize your true hunger cues. Before eating, ask yourself if you are actually hungry. Consider the last time you ate. Ask yourself if you are stressed or bored or putting off a project. If you're not truly hungry, have a distraction set in place.

Here are a few you might try:

  • Call a friend
  • Go for a walk
  • Do a load of laundry or some other household chore
  • Take up a hobby that keeps your hands busy - knitting is a great option

Don't place too much emphasis on willpower. Willpower and motivation are fleeting. Creating sustainable habits and discipline is what will drive your efforts.

Posted in Nutrition, Wellness. Tagged as dieting, willpower.

Discipline Succeeds Where Motivation Fails

Does discipline trump motivation?

I recently read an article that struck a nerve with me.

It was written by a fighter pilot and the topic was motivation and discipline.  His viewpoint was that discipline trumps motivation every time.

The fighter pilot said that when it's time to run head first into the enemy you don't feel motivated to do it.  After all you're full of fear and would rather turn and run the other way.  He said rather it's discipline that's so important at this moment. It's the discipline you've developed, your knowledge on the subject, the training and practice. You know what you have to do so you simply do it.

How to Stay Discplined When You Don't Feel Motivated #motivation #discipline #clearskin #acnefree

As I read this piece I felt immediately drawn to what he was saying. I realized that although he was referring to war time battle, the same principle applies to just about every area of our lives.

In fact, for many areas of our lives if we only relied on how motivated we felt to do something, nothing would get done.  Am I right?!

I see this often in my private coaching.  Women come to me feeling motivated to make a change. They are tired of the way they look and feel. vThey know they need a change and at first the prospect of it all is really exciting. 

They feel motivated to do something different.

But then reality begins to set in and the truth is changing the way you eat isn't always a straight, easy road. At this point discipline has to step in and take over. Otherwise you find yourself right back where you started.

When I had  adult acne  so severe that nothing I tried was working,  I began to look at my issue for what it was.
A sign of a deeper rooted problem that needed to be solved.

This is when I decided to change the way I was eating to bring restoration and healing to my body and therefore, ultimately heal my skin.

Motivation didn't play much of a role during this process. Initially, I felt motivated by the prospect of clearer skin but that quickly faded. One thing to understand about using food as medicine, is the results are not always immediate. Obviously, this can feel frustrating. 

More than that is what others around you see.

To my friends and family, the dietary changes I made, seemed extreme (although they really weren't).

People wondered if I was nourishing my body properly. I began to feel a bit of a stigma because I wasn't eating what everyone else was. The biggest struggle was that my skin didn't clear overnight and as it was healing it went through a few purging stages. You know the old adage, "Things get worse before they get better"?  In my case I experienced this. Therefore to those around me it appeared that all my efforts were in vain.


During these times I didn't feel motivated to keep pushing forward and pursue my goal.  In fact, at times I felt downright defeated.  Was I completely crazy?!  This entire process required discipline on my part.  I knew what I needed to do or I would never know the real results.  If I quit half way through I would never realize the truth.

Worse, if I gave in to temptation or peer pressure to be normal and do what everyone else was doing, I'd have to start back at square one.  I had to be disciplined everyday to follow the plan I laid out for myself.



Motivation is overrated.

If you want to accomplish real changes in your life, you have to develop discipline. 

For many of us, this is a struggle to handle on our own.  We need guidance and accountability. 

Ready to take that step towards clearer skin and better health?  Click here and I'll be in touch with you real soon.




Here's the link to the article I referenced http://www.businessinsider.com/top-gun-pilot-dave-berke-discipline-2017-7

 

Posted in Acne, Wellness. Tagged as acne, discipline, health coach, holistic healing, motivation, nutrition.

How to Never "Cheat" on Your Diet Again

What if you never again had to use the word "cheat" when it comes to food? FREEDOM!

It's sad that over the years we've forgotten how to eat. We seem to know nothing about listening to our own bodies. We use words like "cheating" when it comes to what we eat. It's nonsense and, when I hear it, I hurt for the person who believes it. 

The most recent statistic I heard is that the diet industry is a $72 billion industry. We live in a culture where people are obsessed with weight loss and quick fixes.   The problem is it's easy to sacrifice your health in the name of weight loss. The good news is you don't have to do it this way! 



You don't need to: 
  • Punish yourself for the foods you've eaten
  • View foods as "good" or "bad"
  • Use the word "cheat" when it comes to the foods you've put in your body
  • Ever again say, "I'll start Monday."





There are so many methods of eating available: paleo, vegan, vegetarian, pescatarian, lacto-ovo vegetarian, keto and the list goes on. 

Apart from food camps there are numerous diets available that promise quick, yet lasting results. Cabbage soup diet (been there, done that), apple cider vinegar and maple syrup fast, carb cycling (who can keep track?), counting calories, tracking macros, etc.

I've tried a few of these myself. In fact when I first began healing my body through nutrition I classified myself as a vegan. I'm the first to admit I've fallen into the trap of forcing myself into a food camp, and I've had my fair share of dieting.

Learning to listen to your body is one of the most valuable things you can do for yourself.  Tuning into your body will bring you peace with food. Weight loss, if it needs to happen, will occur in a much more sustainable, life giving way with lasting results. 

It's hard for women to believe that I don't follow a specific plan. What rules do I follow? How do I know when to eat or what to eat? I understand their questions because I had these same questions a few years ago. It's what led me to where I am today. Chasing weight loss, looking for quick fixes and miracle cures led me to a place of gut imbalance and chronic inflammation in the form of cystic acne. I had to find different answers.

Before jumping into a new diet plan or finding yourself feeling trapped by a food camp I encourage you to consider these few things.
  • Learn to listen to what your body is telling you
  • Identify your food intolerances and avoid them even if it's the healthiest food on the planet, if you don't digest it well, don't eat it!
  • Keep your body hydrated with purified water
  • Don't become legalistic when it comes to food
  • Focus on real, whole foods that nourish your body well.




When you follow my principles (the basic are cited above), and you put them into practice so they become second nature, something beautiful happens: you never have to diet again. I know because I'm finally at that point myself, after years of battling with my own body.

I will teach you how to get to this point yourself.

It is possible to not fret or worry every time you're around food. It is possible to feel good in your own skin without being tied down to a diet.

Tired of the nonsense? Click here to apply to work with me. 

Posted in Nutrition, Wellness. Tagged as cheat day, dieting, diets, eat real food, health and wellness, health coach, how to eat, how to eat to lose weight, stop dieting, whole food nutrition.

On the fence about choosing a "word for the year"? Try this instead

Everyone is choosing a "Word for the Year" -- everyone except me.

Here's why:

So much can change in your life in one month, one week or even one day, much more over the course of one whole year.

Some words I've seen chosen are: joy, trust, slow, rest, yes, brave, etc.  You get the idea.  The trend is to choose a word that represents the type of year you want, and then make decisions based off the word.

One major change in your life will sabotage everything, if it all rests on one word.


I plan my year for vacations, school schedules and big projects for my business, but for all the other things? Monthly.  My approach is more realistic, and healthier. Therefore, instead of adding stress when life goes crazy, I am able to adjust. Flexibility facilitates your wellness journey.


So often we view the month of January as setting the tone for the year. If we are successful with our health in January then we can assume we'll be successful for the rest of the year. I'm sorry but this is faulty thinking. First of all what if January is an incredibly challenging month for you financially, emotionally, or physically? What if you feel "unsuccessful" this month? Does that mean the rest of your year is shot? I sure hope not!
#wordoftheyear #clearskin #womenshealth


On the flip side of this, what if January is a highly successful month for you? You hit your fitness and nutrition goals you're on your way to your summer body and then reality hits and you find yourself back where you started. Does this mean you need to wait until next year to start over? Of course not! It would be silly to even think that. This is exactly why I enjoy the new year but I don't place too much pressure on myself to make the month of January "perfect."

A key element that is overlooked when it comes to New Year's goals is how to implement new habits to accomplish those goals. Goals are set with good intentions but, without a clear plan, it is likely you will fall short. This can leave you feeling like you failed. The remedy is to develop some new habits.

The greatest success I've seen with creating new habits is planning out and implementing one or two at a time. Focus on those few items and really perform them well for six weeks, at least. Then it will become an organic part of your day.  After that, add another new, healthy habit.

For example, let's say this year you want to implement a new exercise routine, cut out all processed foods, get 8 hours of sleep each night and implement a quiet time into your day for reflection. Wow I'm tired just writing all that! That's A LOT of pressure, and too much to handle all at any once.

The key is to choose one or two of these new habits, decide how you're going to implement it and then get to a point where it's second nature. Let's say you choose to focus on getting adequate sleep each night, but you're also eager to start working out. Determine what time you need to go to bed by to get the sleep you need. Then decide what you'll do to ensure that your head hits the pillow at the time and do those things.

To begin your new exercise routine start slowly. Plan to commit to 20 minutes a day to start. Work your way up from there. If you currently don't exercise at all, but set a goal to workout for one hour, 6 days a week, you'll probably revert back to your old ways.  It's just too much pressure on the body.  Will this take longer than implementing all the goals at once? No it will not, because it will work.

Whatever you do to inspire yourself for the new year I encourage you to remember this, one critical truth:

Taking care of your body is lifelong commitment
.

Don't rely on a  quick fix, trendy diet or fad exercise program as your be all to end all. These things are never a miracle cure.

I encourage you to view good health as a way of life. Adopt that way now and stick with it forever.

Happy New Year!



P.S.-- I am excited about improvements coming to my site. More than ever I'm passionate about helping women take charge of their health. I will help you quit dieting for good, and I've got just what you need for that.

Reader Feedback:  How do you view the new year? Do you feel a lot of pressure in the month of January to perfectly implement all your goals for the year? What would you like to see happen?
 

Posted in Wellness. Tagged as #newyearsresolutions, #wordoftheyear, creating healthy habits, goal setting, habits, health and wellness, new year, new year's resolutions, new years resolutions, nutrition, quit dieting, weight loss, weight management, word for the year.

Healthy Holiday Tips and Tricks

It's said that the average person gains 7 to 10 pounds between Thanksgiving and Christmas.

That's a significant amount of weight!

How accurate these numbers are, and whether this actually starts around Thanksgiving (I personally believe it to start in October with Halloween), the fact is the holidays can present a struggle.


As soon as the weather begins to turn cold our bodies begin to crave more nourishment. Unfortunately, our first thought is not of dark, leafy greens tossed in a vinaigrette. Warm, cozy, comfort foods are a more tempting choice and, during the holidays, they abound. That is not necessarily, however, a bad thing. There are plenty of delicious foods that are great options to eat over the winter.

The problem I've seen in my private coaching sessions are the number of events that surround the holidays: office parties, family gatherings, cookie exchanges . . . you get the idea.

The trouble all begins with the onslaught of your kid's Halloween candy that bag can be SO tempting!


#holidays #Christmas #thanksgiving #nutrition #dieting

As the holiday season comes to a close with Christmas and New Year's I'd like to share a few thoughts with you on how to manage the holidays.

  • When an event, party or social gathering is on your calendar, NEVER show up hungry. This one drives me nuts because I hear women say it all the time, "I have a party tonight so I'm not going to eat all day so I can eat at the party." No, no, no! I'm not sure where this idea originated, but its faulty logic. The biggest problem I have with this approach is it doesn't facilitate steady blood sugar levels. Blood sugar levels control the hormone insulin. It's best to avoid large spikes and falls with our blood sugar levels. We want our blood sugar, and therefore our insulin levels, to have minimal rises and falls like small, steady waves. Not eating all day, only to go pig out at night, is setting you up for failure. You can't save your entire caloric intake for one meal.  You just can't and be healthy with a steady weight.
 
  • If food is being served buffet-style, first peruse the selections and select what you really want to eat. A small sample of the menu items is okay, too. Eat a little of everything, and eat a whole lot of no one thing. I learned this trick from Bethenny Frankel who advocates, "No more dieting! I've had it!" She writes, Taste everything, eat nothing. Why shove a bunch of food into your face when you can taste small perfect bites of delicious food and stop before it ever gets ugly?  Naturally Thin, 2009.  While I don't agree with every point she makes in her book, I do agree with this school of thought. 
 
  • If you have dietary restrictions don't veer off course just because you're at a party. If you're highly intolerant to gluten, then don't eat it just because you're in a social environment. Trust me, it's not worth it! Of foods you tolerate in moderation, make your decision before arriving how much you will eat. Use your head, and not your emotions. Do not get ambushed by temptation. That is another reason to not show up hungry.
 
  • If you're hosting the event, anticipate the wishes of your guests. Have a gluten free/vegan option available. Serve healthy hors d'oeurves and a large green salad with a simple vinaigrette dressing, along with the classic favorites we all enjoy.
 
  • ​​​​​​​Make time for exercise. Life is busy and it seems to get even busier around the holidays. Making time for exercise is so important there's no excuse not to. Schedule it on your calendar, and hold to it as an appointment with your healthy self.
 
  • The key to making exercise stick is to find a program you love that gives you the results you're after. If you're new to exercise I highly recommend Leslie Sansone's walking program. Years ago I tried her out and dropped 18 pounds in about 2 months. I like her method because it's simple to use, there's no expensive equipment to buy and it's so easy on the joints. I currently do Tracy Anderson Method, and have for about the past 5 years. I love programs I can use at home. It makes it that much easier to get done. You don't have to join a gym, unless you want to of course! The point is:
    • Stick to it.
    • Make a commitment.
    • Find something you like.
 
  • ​​​​​​​Allow adequate downtime -- don't over schedule. Lack of sleep and high stress levels have a profound effect on our health, and our weight.

If you've already gained some weight, please, don't beat yourself up over it; and don't go on some crazy juice cleanse to eliminate it. Be gentle with your body, and nourish it with delicious, whole food nutrition.


Struggling to get the weight off? Let me help you. I have 5 spaces available beginning in 2018 for my private coaching program. Those tend to fill up fast, so don't wait! I offer a complimentary 60 minute session to discover if we're a good fit to work together, one-on-one. Click here and let's get started.
 

Posted in Wellness. Tagged as health and wellness, health coach, healthy holiday tips, holiday tips, weight loss, weight management.

The Link Between Air Quality and Acne

I just saw an article discussing the relationship between indoor air quality and acne. Contrary to what you may think, indoor air can be five times more polluted than outdoor air. Common culprits can be dust, candles, cleaning supplies and also the particles that travel inside with you on your clothing.

"These are commonly known as volatile organic compounds, or VOCs."
Frequently, these tiny, invisible particles lurk in things like paint, cleaning products,
candles, and air fresheners--and they can have all sorts of repercussions for your skin.
(https://www.wellandgood.com/good-looks/air-quality-and-skin/slide/2/)


It's easy to think of acne as only an external skin issue.  Having a proper skin care routine is extremely important to clearing your skin and maintaining that clear skin. However, it stands to reason that other factors play a role in the look & appearance of our skin as well.

Acne can be a deep rooted issue and it's important to get to the real source. Digestion, quality of nutrition, stress levels and quality of sleep all affect the appearance of our skin.


What about air quality? It's probably safe to say that many of us aren't focused on this part as much. However, there does seem to be a natural progression between improving nutrition and improving the quality of household cleaners, soaps, shampoos and makeup. Once we start changing the foods we put in our body, it's natural to begin examining the things our skin comes in contact with as well as those things we breath in.

I have made the switch from toxic cleaning products to safer alternatives. Before that I remember shooing my children away while cleaning the bathroom. On the days when I had to go in and scrub the tub, I'd come up coughing and eyes watering. Pretty sure that's a good indication that what I was breathing in wasn't great. Not only that, but the chemicals we use come into contact with our skin and may end up in our bloodstream.

Where to start?

Start small. Ditch plug in air fresheners and perfumed room sprays. My favorite alternative to this is diffusing essential oils.  


Consider having a few house plants. There's a lot of evidence to suggest that indoor plants help improve the air quality. Plus, they are attractive and can be a natural part of your home decor. 

Check out a quality air purifier. One thing to look for is how much square footage the unit covers. If you live in a small space one air purifier may do it. If you have a large home take that into consideration. If you cannot manage to cover the entire house, focus on the rooms in which you spend most of your time, including the bedrooms.



Awareness is the first step. It's easy to go through the "day-to-day" and not think about what comes in contact with your skin. If you have persistent acne it's certainly worth looking into.
 

Posted in Acne, Wellness. Tagged as acne, acne and air quality, air quality, heal my acne, healing acne holistically, health and wellness, health coach, indoor air pollution.

How to Beat the Sunday Blues

What is it about Sundays and feeling blue?

I don't think I'm alone in this as I've seen other bloggers write about this very topic.  Not to mention a good friend of mine and I call it
depressing Sunday.  In fact we call or text often on Sundays and say the words, "Happy Depressing Sunday!!" This little joke between us has actually brightened my day more than once.


How to Beat the Blues. #beattheblues #overcome sadness


I don't know about you, but I'm the type of person who thrives on routine. I like the mundane, ordinary tasks of the week and while I may get tired of it sometimes, there's also a great deal of comfort in it. 

I'm a Christian and grew up in a Christian home so Sunday was always a day of worship and rest in our house.  My parents even had a rule that any weekend homework had to be completed by Saturday night because come Sunday there would be no working on it.  I much appreciated this rule because I was never frantically trying to get school work done before Monday morning rolled around.


While Sundays have always had a calmer feel to them, there's something that feels almost sad to this day.

Whether or not you are a believer, and whether or not you attend a church, I don't think many would argue that Sunday does represent a somewhat slower pace that any other day of the week.  It's a time to sit back, be with family and rest for the week ahead.


It's the sitting back and resting part that can be a bit uncomfortable for me.  Weekly schedules and routine keep my body busy and my mind busy.  Do you find this to be true for yourself?


Routines and structure means there isn't much time for reflection and this also means there aren't many pockets of quiet.  While this does get tiresome, it also offers a certain level of protection.  I can't stop and think and reflect because I need to move on to the next task.  Sundays provide a large window of time where I really don't know what to do with myself and I'm forced to deal with the quiet.

Do you find this true for yourself?


Your state of mind is essential to your overall well being.

Everything is connected: mind, body, and spirit.  It's important these things are in tune with one another.

Now I'm not saying don't ever feel sad or blue.  Quite the contrary, when these feelings do arise don't ignore them but rather decipher where they are coming from and what's behind them.  My mother passed away three years ago and, since then, Sundays have become an even greater challenge -- missing her most in the quiet moments. The reality of her absence cannot be denied during those times.


Here are a few things I've found that help me deal with the Sunday blues and may help you as well:

  1. Stay hydrated.  Sounds ridiculous, I know.  It also sounds like it's just another excuse to talk about the importance of water.  However, there is no denying that when your cells aren't properly hydrated your body doesn't function optimally.  Any negative emotions you're feeling will only be amplified if you're running on empty.
  2. Take a walk and grab some sunshine. It's easy to stay in the house and hibernate with Netflix. This can be comforting but it's easy to not want to retreat from your personal space. Instead I like to grab my daughters and take them for a walk, especially when the weather is nice.  A little Vitamin D from the sun can go a long way to lift your spirits.
  3. List the things  for which you're grateful.  It can be easy to forget all the little things we have to be grateful for.  Try writing down just 3 things you are thankful for.  If you are in a tough season of life, you may feel that there isn't much to be grateful about but that's the beauty of this exericise.  It causes you to pause and see the beauty that's around you.  At night when my girls and I do their prayers, we always thank God for our warm beds and our full tummies. Two things most of us take for granted everyday but oh their significance in our lives! I thank God for my family, friends, for the roof over our heads and for food in the refrigerator.  Stopping to say these blessings helps me remember just how sweet life can be.  I challenge you to complete this exercise in gratitude and see if your spirits aren't lifted.


I'd love to hear from you! What are your thoughts on Sunday? Funday or Depressing? Is there a day of the week where you feel more uplifted and excited than the rest of the week?


Disclaimer: This blog is in no way intended to be a substitute for medical advice and/or professional help. If you struggle with depression it is important to seek professional counseling.
 

Posted in Wellness. Tagged as depressingsunday, depression, gratitude, healthandwellness, healthcoach, sundayblues, vitamind.

Feeling Powerless Over Acne

I've openly shared my life long struggle with acne. Battling cystic acne has been a part of my life since I was a teenager. What I haven't shared as openly is how utterly powerless I felt to stop it.


Here are a few of the things I have been told about acne:
  • Nutrition has nothing to do with it. Changing what you eat won't clear your skin.
  • To keep acne under control you'll always be on some type of medication.
  • Your acne is hormonal so therefore it's out of your control.


So basically there is nothing you can do except spend a lot of money on lotions, potions and pills.
No wonder I felt so powerless!


Do any of these sound familiar? Have you been told these things?
How to not feel powerless over acne #acne #acnefree #clearskin

I'll never forget the day I looked in the mirror and decided to take control of my acne.

It's like a switch was flipped in my mind and I completely changed my attitude about the whole situation. Knowledge is power and I decided to arm myself with as much knowledge about the body, nutrition and the way foods affect the body as I could.

I implemented what I learned and guess what?

The appearance of my skin improved! I was getting fewer and fewer breakouts. The redness and inflammation in my skin was lessening. Most importantly I no longer felt like a victim of my circumstances.

As I've continued my research I'm honestly amazed at just how much nutrition does affect the way we look, including our skin. I've also discovered a few other key areas, besides the foods we eat, that greatly affect our appearance.




Let me ask you. How do you feel about your skin? Do you like what you see when you look in the mirror? Being open to learning more about nutrition and the way food affects the body (for better or worse!) is the first step. When you're ready to take that step let's talk!  

Posted in Acne, Nutrition, Wellness. Tagged as acne, acne scars, feeling powerless, healing acne holistically, health coach, prevent acne scars, skin care coach.

All or Nothing

Are any of these excuses your excuses?
  • Not enough money
  • Not enough time
  • Not the right timing.

Those are common excuses I hear from women for why they are not ready to begin implementing a healthier lifestyle.
  • MONEY do you feel you  can't afford to eat healthier? That is, for the most part a myth. Eating well or eating poorly costs about the same. Factor in being healthier, and it probably costs less.
  • TIME do you think eating healthy is too time-consuming? That is, in fact, a matter of choice. Food preparation can be a pleasant and relaxing time; a time to form some new habits that you've probably wanted to develop anyway.
  • TIMING -- are you waiting for the perfect, golden opportunity to start -- after school is out; after school gets back in; after vacation; after Thanksgiving. . . . HUGE mistake! There will always be something to tempt you, to sway you, to steer you off course. It's called LIFE.
#nutrition #dieting #eatwell #havefun

I may sound a little unsympathetic here but I'm not. Those excuses used to be my top three. None of them can withstand the power of your decision to eat healthier and to be healthier. The single greatest challenge for me was to overcome the "all or nothing" mentality.

The world of nutrition can seem to be black and white, with little room for any gray areas. You either eat well or you don't. You either purchase only organic food or you don't. You either never eat processed food or you do.

Here's the thing: In a perfect world everyone would be eating only organic, locally sourced produce and grass-fed meats from local farmers and eggs from free-range chickens, etc. You get the picture. Sounds wonderful, but is it reality? Unless you own your own farm and you only eat what you personally grow and you never travel or go on vacation, this nutrition utopia is probably not a reality.

I see it all the time. It's sad, really, because here are some of the things I've heard:

"If you can't eat organic you may as well be eating ________ (insert fast food joint here)."
"Eating eggs is like smoking cigarettes. It'll kill you. You should only be 100% vegan."
"Eating meat destroys the planet."
"You have to eat ______ (insert your least favorite vegetable here) or you can't be healthy."
"Smoothies for breakfast are the pillar of healthy lifestyle."

Sounds really motivating, right? Geez! Hearing this stuff even makes me want to run in the opposite direction. Now when I come across those types of comments I simply smile and move on. I recognize that life is meant to be enjoyed, and a big part of that is enjoying good food. We are meant to nourish our bodies well. However, the stress we feel over food can be just as bad for our health as any less than ideal food choices.

Instead of viewing nutrition as all or nothing I encourage you to take a different approach. I teach my clients this saying, "Do the best you can, whenever you can, as often as you can." If you are able to eat organic that is definitely the better choice. However, eating conventional produce is not equivalent to eating a highly processed cheese burger and fries so don't make it out to be. There shouldn't be any shame in purchasing conventional produce if that is what is available to you.

And about that cheeseburger and fries -- I believe there is a place for that in life as well!! Again, it's not all or nothing. 

Where I've witnessed the most long term success is with women who gradually make changes instead of trying to do a complete overhaul overnight. It is very difficult to try to upend everything about the way you eat in a few days. It's too easy to slip back into old habits when life gets stressful. When gradual changes are made the chances of making them a permanent lifestyle increase. The reality is there needs to be balance and room for flexibility.



I want to hear from you.  Leave a comment!

Have you ever felt discouraged about eating better because of this all or nothing attitude? Have you felt held back because you aren't able to dive in 100%?
 

Posted in Nutrition, Wellness. Tagged as dieting, diets, eatrealfood, healthcoach, nongmo, organicfood, stopdieting, weightloss, wellness.