Are you Willing To Do What It Takes To Live A Healthy Life?

Millions of people are living with stress, chronic illness, loss, grief, and depression.

Is this you? If so, please consider making some life changes.

Good health is the cornerstone of our life. It determines how we ultimately look, feel, interact with others and thrive in life and work.

Here are some of my favorite suggestions for getting healthy, fit and creating emotional wellness.

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1. Exercise: Do any exercise you can stretch, walk, join a group in the park, run a 5K, swim, just get moving.

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2. Eat Healthy Foods. No matter what your budget is you can choose to eat healthier. Buy and eat fruit and vegetables every day. I often add vegetables to my organic eggs-it is delicious. Buy organic if you can, if not go to your local farmers market.

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3. Relax, Relax, Relax. My favorite place to chill out is the beach. We all need more time to unwind away from work and the stress of living in our world. It can be difficult to leave your work but just do it!

4. Surround yourself with beauty. Have fresh flowers in your house, create a garden, design a beautiful altar with sacred items, make your bedroom a sanctuary for sleeping.

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5. Honor the earth through prayer or meditation. Our mother earth needs our love and support as she goes through a deep transition and clearing. I never leave my home without meditating at least 15 minutes.

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6. I believe creating and living the life you deeply desire is one of the most important choices you can make. If you are working in a job you can not stand you will never live a healthy, well-balanced life.

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These are just a few of the ways to help vitalize your health and wellbeing. If you need assistance in creating a healthier life style, healing emotional issues or eliminating old patterns and beliefs please reach out. Call me at 404-824-7332 or go to jjdillon@mindspring.com

 

Is Stress Keeping You Up At Night?
7 “Stress Buster” Tips

Stress Management TipsWhat keeps Americans awake at night? For most of us and especially small business, executives and health care providers, as well as caregivers it’s stress. There’s just too much to do, and not enough time to do it all.

We push ourselves to do more and more…

We are a population that’s dependent on medication to get to sleep and get through the next day. This is often the result of our increased usage of technology and life-style choices we choose to engage in.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate that 70% to 80% of all disease and illness is stress-related. Add to that the fact that the needs for an estimated 75% to 90% of visits to physicians are stress-related, and there’s good reason the drug companies are having a field day. It’s not necessary to get all stressed out over stress when there is so much good information and knowledge about how to reduce it. Managing stress well leads to improved physical and psychological health.

As a life and wellness coach I teach these top seven “stress-busters” (stress management techniques) to all my clients that help them dramatically reduce stress and improve the quality of their sleep. The results are life-changing.

  1. Mindful awareness of thoughts and beliefs – Become aware of what you are thinking and feeling during the day. Are your thoughts negative, fearful or limiting? Do you worry about everything: money, health, and relationships? If you are thinking negative thoughts, you are attracting into your life negative people and unhelpful situations. You are doing the very thing you do not want to do. Try to “let go” of the thought and replace it with a positive belief or image.
  2. Set Boundaries – If you want to alleviate stress you have to set healthy boundaries. And in the world of business that means setting boundaries with technology. It means un-plugging from cell phones and e-mail at a reasonable time each day. It means not having to be on call 24 hours to answer you phone. Having advanced technology is fabulous but not to the extent that you are unable to sleep or engage in activities without checking your e-mail.
  3. Quiet The Mind – Mediating before bedtime for ten to twenty minutes can be very helpful for reducing stress and promoting sounder sleep. Sit quietly in a comfortable chair, close your eyes and breathe deeply. Focus on your breath; relax your chest and body. When your mind wanders and you find yourself lost in other thoughts, let the emotion or thoughts go and return your focus to your breathing. This practice works quickly to reduce stress and rebalance your body. Continue for at least ten minutes or until you feel drowsy.
  4. Exercise, Exercise, Exercise – It’s a great way to release tension and fortify ourselves against the physical effects of stress. Engage in aerobic activity; take a walk, run or swim. Try a new, fun exercise such as NIA, belly-dancing or boxing. Exercising in the evening, however can be counter-productive, particularly if the exercise is vigorous.
  5. Laugh and Have Fun – Laughter is one of the healthiest antidotes to stress. Take yourself lightly and your work seriously. When we laugh or even smile, blood flow to the brain is increased, endorphins are released, and levels of stress hormones drop. Start to notice how often you smile. People who experience joy, fun and laughter sleep well.
  6. Diaphragmatic Breathing – The following exercises make use of the breath and can enhance the ability to fall asleep due to their calming effect. Put one hand on your abdomen and close your eyes. Take a deep breath in through your nose and expel it slowly and completely through your mouth. You will feel your belly flatten. Exhale fully, drawing in your abdomen. At the end of each third exhalation, hold your breath for as long as you can. Then repeat the process two or three times, or until you feel sleepy.
  7. Take Action – Rather than worry, re-live the situation over and over or spend sleepless nights thinking about the consequences, take some action to move the issue forward. Get a wellness coach or a therapist, talk to a friend, and begin journaling… just do something! Procrastination weakens productivity, compounds your anxiety and causes the stressful side-effects of guilt, anger and low self-esteem.

If you need assistance in helping to reduce your stress and improve your life – balance check out our stress management services

I would love to know how your mange your stress!

How to Host a Women’s Wellness Weekend

Are you ready to shake off your winter doldrums and focus on a healthier new you this Spring? I am ready, and I found a fun way to do just that!

I threw a SPArty!

The gray days and nippy nights here in Atlanta have made me feel sluggish and subdued lately. I wanted a weekend getaway, and I also wanted a perfect way to celebrate the launch of this blog! So I rounded up my friends for a Women’s Wellness Weekend (“SPArty”) at one of my favorite destinations, the home of my friend and editor Michelle on St. Simons Island, Georgia. It’s where I have found all my favorite things in one place: sunny beaches, warm breezes, wonderful friends and fabulous food, and of course, yoga!

As I had hoped, this weekend was the perfect way to launch this blog, because it was all about relaxing with women friends while rejuvenating ourselves through an in-home spa experience, what we call a SPArty! A SPArty is a great way for us women to celebrate all kinds of new beginnings: a new job or career change, a child’s birth, a milestone birthday, a disease-free diagnosis, a book or blog launch, or simply to welcome Spring!

Michelle welcomed us into her home which was filled with scented candles and soft music. We began with a meditation to set the intention of this special event. Then, I shared my own intentions for this blog, which is my passionate desire to help people begin their personal journey toward living their most rewarding, empowered lifestyle.

Then we all chatted for a while about our concerns regarding our health, and the physical, mental and emotional changes we’re all going through. We talked about how we can cope with the stress we’re experiencing due to things like our jobs, our relationships, and our sleeping issues, and how to we can do simple techniques, such as breathing exercises and yoga to relieve that stress. We all agreed that we wanted to learn how to stay healthy and active; in other words, how to age well.

Then we needed some refreshment, so we moved into the kitchen where we juiced a variety of fresh fruit and veggies. While we sipped these delicious drinks, we talked about the obvious benefits of juicing.The research I’ve done says that juicing fruits and vegetables can maximize your nutrient intake, fight disease, strengthen your cells against the effects of free radicals, help you lose weight and even help you cut down on your medications. I gave everyone two of my favorite recipes so they could try juicing at home.

 

Here they are.. Try them and let me know what you think. Send me your favorite juice drinks, too! These juice drinks are from one of my favorite books on juicing. The Juice Lady’s Guide to Juicing for Health.

 Immune Builder

1 handful watercress
1 turnip, scrubbed, tops removed, ends trimmed
3 carrots, scrubbed well, tops removed, ends trimmed
1-2 garlic cloves
1/2 green apple such as Granny Smith or pippin

 

 

Swollen Joints and Arthritis

Peppy Parsley

1 handful parsley
2 ribs celery with leaves
2 carrots, scrubbed, green tops removed
1 cucumber, peeled if not organic
1/2 lemon, peeled (optional; don’t use if you are sensitive to citrus)

Next, we moved outdoors to Michelle’s backyard where Patty, our yoga instructor, was setting up our mats. Patty led us through some simple movements and stretches while she told us about some of yoga’s benefits. After this great 45-minute session, we all agreed we felt calm yet invigorated… and hungry!

We went back into the kitchen where Michelle and I had prepared a lovely, large lunch salad brimming with locally grown produce, with a side of fresh broiled shrimp. Eating locally produced food is one of the many ways you can enjoy a healthier lifestyle. (We’ll talk about the many good reasons to buy locally grown food in a future post.) We finished our meal with a seasonal fresh fruit dessert.

We gathered one last time in the living room where I asked everyone to join me in a simple ritual to bring closure to our time together. Michelle had placed a large, low bowl of water on the coffee table with a number of “wish” stones in the bottom. Each stone was imprinted with a word such as “Dream,” “Inspire,” “Explore,” “Heal,” “Believe,” “Imagine,” “Hope”. Each woman selected a stone from the bowl and shared about the meaning her stone held for her, and what she had learned from the day’s activities. One guest shared that she recognized hers to be a “stepping stone” toward her goal of a healthier lifestyle! Everyone agreed this was a wonderful keepsake by which to remember this special time with friends.

Ritual for Gathering

I invite you to hold your own SPArty in your home this Spring. Write to me or comment below and let everyone know about your own activities, your healthy juicing recipes and meals, and your special rituals!