Lifestyle Solutions for a Happy Healthy You!

Posts tagged ‘Relationships’

The Case for Slowing Down in 2015

The Case for Slowing Down in 2015

Research has shown that it takes 25 minutes for the average person to mentally recover from a single phone call or other such interruption during work. The problem is, research has also shown that these sorts of interruptions occur in our daily lives every 11 or so minutes. So when you’re halfway de-stressed from one interruption, another one comes blundering along into your life. It’s like consistently getting 4 hours of sleep when your body craves 8; it’s going to catch up with you — and it’s not going to be pretty.

Chronic, unrelenting stress is dangerous to our health, happiness, and longevity, being at the root of myriad chronic diseases and imbalances. But the benefits of reducing stress and slowing down in life are universal:

-increased happiness and enjoyment of life

-better, deeper focus

-less tension and and stress-induced musculoskeletal imbalances    

Small life changes, like reducing an addiction to technology, can help you experience less stress in your daily life, and deal with stressors more healthily when they do come thundering along.

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Take a card from the techies at Google: take a technology sabbath. Shut your electronics off for one day or an entire weekend. Read books, play games with your family, go outdoors, experience creativity-inducing boredom.  

Even if you don’t have the luxury to take a technology sabbath, you can still slow down your daily routine. Make yourself a hearty homemade breakfast instead of rushed buttered toast, and give yourself the time to mindfully enjoy it. Eat dinner with your family without checking your phone midway. Listen to the sounds of birds instead of blasting music on your walk to the local cafe. Every little bit helps. Here are 4 additional ways to slow your life down:  

1. Do a few important things instead of many trivial things

2. Leave early for events so you don’t have to rush.

3. Practice basic meditation for 5-25 minutes a day. Become comfortable with ‘doing nothing’. It has been scientifically proven to reduce stress.

4. Spend as much time as you can in nature, undistracted; even if all you can spare is just one day a month. It revitalizes you.

5. Eliminate what is unnecessary in your life — people, technology, fragile furnishings, et cetera; anything that requires trivial efforts, causes stress, or serves no function.  “Our life is frittered away by detail… simplify, simplify.” Thoreau  

We are bombarded by facts and information in our everyday lives — so much so that it is impossible to absorb more than a fraction of it. Slow down and let yourself learn, hear, and see new things. Stop opening your browser window; slow down and open yourself up to the world.    

By Jordyn Cormier

Jordyn is a choreographer, freelance writer, and an avid outdoors woman. Having received her B.F.A. in Contemporary Dance from the Boston Conservatory, she is passionate about maintaining a healthy body, mind, and soul through food and fitness. A lover of adventure, Jordyn can often be found hiking, canoeing, mountain biking, and making herself at home in the backcountry! 

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Would feeling fantastic every day make a difference in your life?  

Healthy Highway is a Healthy Lifestyle Company offering Lifestyle Solutions for a Happy Healthy You!   We help people who are…

  • Wanting Work Life Balance.
  • Needing Stress Relief.
  • Concerned about their health and the environment.
  • Frustrated battling allergies to gluten, foods, dust, chemicals, pollen.
  • Overwhelmed with choosing the best products for their body, home, and office.
  • Unsatisfied with their relationships with the men and women in their life and are ready to transform them into satisfying, happy partnerships.
  • Standing at a Career Crossroad.
  • Preparing to start a family and want a healthy baby.
  • Seeking solutions for aging, more energy, and a good night’s sleep!

Are any of these an issue or problem for you?  Would it make sense for us to spend several minutes together to discuss your needs and how HealthyHighway can meet them? As a Healthy Lifestyle Coach with an emphasis on allergies and wellness, Leesa teaches her clients to make informed choices and enables them to make needed changes for a Happy Healthy Lifestyle. What you eat, what products you use ~ on your body and in your home and office, how you talk to yourself ~ it all matters!

Contact me today and Start today to live a healthier, happier life!  Don’t live in Atlanta?  Not a problem.  We do virtual coaching worldwide!

I look forward to helping YOU Live a Happy Healthy Life!  Remember, Excellent Health is found along your way, not just at your destination.

Live Well!

Leesa A. Wheeler

Leesa A. Wheeler

Healthy Lifestyle Coach, Artisan, Author of two books…
     Melodies from Within ~ Available Now! 
    Available on Amazon, Barnes&Noble, GooglePlay, iTunes! 

Member International Association for Health Coaches 

ring ~ 770-393-1284

write ~ info@healthyhighway.org

visit ~ www.healthyighway.org

coach, consult, contact ~ www.healthyhighway.org/contact.html

(Don’t live in Atlanta?  Not a problem!  We do virtual coaching worldwide!)

join our mailing list ~ www.healthyhighway.org

chcws ~ www.chews4health.com/Leesa

enjoy ~ www.chewcolat.com

follow ~ www.twitter.com/HealthyHighway

learn   www.healthyhighway.wordpress.com

like ~ www.tinyurl.com/Facebook-HealthyHighway

join ~ www.google.com/+HealthyhighwayOrg

join ~ www.google.com/+LeesaWheeler

link ~ www.linkedin.com/in/leesawheeler

skpe ~ healthyhighway

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8 Habits to Ditch & Embrace in 2015

8 Habits to Ditch & Embrace in 2015

Stop feeling guilty. We spend a considerable amount of thought-energy on guilt — and where does it get us? It doesn’t solve problems; it ironically worsens them by building up stress which takes an incredible toll on your body and mind. Instead, take a proactive approach to life and improve the situation. Don’t just sit around feeling sorry for yourself. No matter how bad you feel today, tomorrow is always a new day, and a new chance to live better.     

Accept yourself as you are. You are imperfect. Deal with it. Everyone is flawed in myriad ways. Thinking that you’re somehow any worse than anyone else is incorrect. Everyone makes mistakes. But, by practicing confidence and self-acceptance, you will exude the illusion of ‘togetherness’ that everyone is striving to achieve. Heck, you may even start to fool yourself!      

Exercise, meditate, and eat natural foods. No one’s telling your to try and win the next Ironman competition, but these 3 pillars are pivotal to a healthy, happy lifestyle. Think about it as a trifecta: Some gentle, fun exercise every day keeps you young; 5 or 10 minutes of meditation will nix your chronic stress; wholesome, natural foods will help your body function the way it was meant to. Start incorporating these into your life, bit by bit, week by week, and notice how much better you feel. Your body will love you for it.    

Embrace your dreams. Everyone has dreams. But, for most, that’s where they stay. Make your dreams reality this year; they’re not impossible. Make a realistic, step-by-step timetable to help you achieve your wildest, most desired dreams. It may take an entire year — it may take 10 — but you’ll be pursuing your dreams and enjoying the experience instead of just letting them flit about and wither within your mind.   

Stop fearing the unknown. Take chances this year. Fear of the unknown is what squashes most dreams. Comfort is overrated; try something you’ve never done before. Get out there. You may just discover a whole new dimension to yourself! What’s the worst that can happen? 

Stop stressing about money. Again, stressing only worsens the situation. Instead, do something about it. Be proactive. Financial stress can make you miserable. Figure out a way to deal with it and trust that, with effort, it will all work out in the end. You’ll feel the load on your shoulders lighten considerably. 

Do things that make you feel strong and independent. This is especially true if you are in a long-term relationship with loved ones and friends. We can get so comfortable and dependent on our partners and comrades that we lose a bit of ourselves — that beautiful, spunky spark. This year, take chances and rediscover yourself out on your own. Take a solo trip, delve into a new class by yourself, talk to interesting new people. It will bring further dimension and excitement into your life — and your relationships.       

Let go of negativity. The counterclockwise whirlpool of your mind can suck even your most intrinsic happiness and positivity out of you if you allow it. The beautiful thing is: you’re in control. You can cut the branches of negative thought off at the source. Most of what we experience in life is heavily influenced by the mind, meaning you have the power to alter and improve your experiences through positive thinking. Kick out negativity and negative words like ‘can’t’, ‘no’, ‘won’t’, ‘too hard’, and all the rest. Negativity is simply a waste of precious, beautiful time. 

2015 is the year to make yourself into what you want to be. Carve your own path and thrive in the positivity and confidence these habits will offer your life. So, go ahead and do it — there’s no better time. It’s all within you.

By Jordyn Cormier

Jordyn is a choreographer, freelance writer, and an avid outdoors woman. Having received her B.F.A. in Contemporary Dance from the Boston Conservatory, she is passionate about maintaining a healthy body, mind, and soul through food and fitness. A lover of adventure, Jordyn can often be found hiking, canoeing, mountain biking, and making herself at home in the back country! 

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Would feeling fantastic every day make a difference in your life?  

Healthy Highway is a Healthy Lifestyle Company offering Lifestyle Solutions for a Happy Healthy You!   We help people who are…

  • Wanting Work Life Balance.
  • Needing Stress Relief.
  • Concerned about their health and the environment.
  • Frustrated battling allergies to gluten, foods, dust, chemicals, pollen.
  • Overwhelmed with choosing the best products for their body, home, and office.
  • Unsatisfied with their relationships with the men and women in their life and are ready to transform them into satisfying, happy partnerships.
  • Standing at a Career Crossroad.
  • Preparing to start a family and want a healthy baby.
  • Seeking solutions for aging, more energy, and a good night’s sleep!

Are any of these an issue or problem for you?  Would it make sense for us to spend several minutes together to discuss your needs and how HealthyHighway can meet them? As a Healthy Lifestyle Coach with an emphasis on allergies and wellness, Leesa teaches her clients to make informed choices and enables them to make needed changes for a Happy Healthy Lifestyle. What you eat, what products you use ~ on your body and in your home and office, how you talk to yourself ~ it all matters!

Contact me today and Start today to live a healthier, happier life!  Don’t live in Atlanta?  Not a problem.  We do virtual coaching worldwide!

I look forward to helping YOU Live a Happy Healthy Life!  Remember, Excellent Health is found along your way, not just at your destination.

Live Well!

Leesa A. Wheeler

Leesa A. Wheeler

Healthy Lifestyle Coach, Artisan, Author of two books…
     Melodies from Within ~ Available Now! 
    Available on Amazon, Barnes&Noble, GooglePlay, iTunes! 

Member International Association for Health Coaches 

ring ~ 770-393-1284

write ~ info@healthyhighway.org

visit ~ www.healthyighway.org

coach, consult, contact ~ www.healthyhighway.org/contact.html

(Don’t live in Atlanta?  Not a problem!  We do virtual coaching worldwide!)

join our mailing list ~ www.healthyhighway.org

chcws ~ www.chews4health.com/Leesa

enjoy ~ www.chewcolat.com

follow ~ www.twitter.com/HealthyHighway

learn   www.healthyhighway.wordpress.com

like ~ www.tinyurl.com/Facebook-HealthyHighway

join ~ www.google.com/+HealthyhighwayOrg

join ~ www.google.com/+LeesaWheeler

link ~ www.linkedin.com/in/leesawheeler

skpe ~ healthyhighway

How to Be Happier Within 5 Working Days

How to Be Happier Within 5 Working Days

  Why wait to be happy until the weekend hits or the next vacation beckons? It’s possible to feel happy Monday through Friday. Let me chalk out a simple Happiness Plan for you. It is almost ridiculously easy to follow, because it requires you to do nothing but one feel-happy thing each day of the week.
Monday: Decide to do your health just ONE favor. Think of something you have been neglecting or not doing for a while. Avoiding exercise, perhaps? No time for the gym, no energy to go jogging either. Fine. How about going up and down the stairs for just 10 minutes today? A few stretches at your desk would work, too. A spot of exercise will make a remarkable difference in the way you feel. Check out this University of Bristol research study, which specifically states how exercising on a working day makes you happier (and more productive at work).
Tuesday: Do some good today. Helping others triggers the feel-good hormone in our own systems. This good deed does not need to be time consuming or expensive–in fact, you need not even step out of office to try and help someone! How about bringing a batch of cookies for your coworkers, paying someone a genuine compliment, offering to help lighten their workload… ideas abound. The important thing is to think of something that will make someone’s day, and then do it! A British study has established that kindness leads to happiness: so now you have a science-backed reason to be nicer!
Wednesday: Today is No Negativity Day! Resolve, this morning, to think positive thoughts and wave away everything that is negative. So, no talking behind someone’s back, no criticizing and complaining, no “can’t and won’t.” Just for today, be someone who makes a space feel happier and more positive just by being in it. Smile more, and while you are at it, let go of the grudges you have been carrying around in your heart.
Thursday: Get close to Nature today. Routine work life has wrenched us away from the beauty of butterflies and flowers, trees and sky. Reconnect! Take a stroll in an open space, perhaps visit a plant nursery, or wake up early to hear the birds chirp and the dawn paint the sky gold.
Friday: Meet up with a friend or five! The weekend awaits, with its gift of rejuvenating pleasures. Tonight, just let your hair down and treat yourself to the company of your friends. A research study done at the London School of Economics measured happiness levels among people when they spent time with their parents, children and friends. The results: people were found to be happiest in the company of their friends. Chart your own happiness plan step by one little step.
By Shubhra Krishan
Writer, editor and journalist Shubhra Krishan is the author of Essential Ayurveda: What it is and what it can do for you (New World Library, 2003), Radiant Body, Restful Mind: A Woman’s book of comfort (New World Library, 2004), and The 9 to 5 Yogi: How to feel like a sage while working like a dog (Hay House India, 2011).

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Would feeling fantastic every day make a difference in your life?  HealthyHighway is a healthy lifestyle company that offers healthy lifestyle solutions for a Happy Healthy You! We help people who are…

  • Wanting Work Life Balance.
  • Needing Stress Relief.
  • Concerned about their health and the environment.
  • Frustrated battling allergies to gluten, foods, dust, chemicals, pollen.
  • Overwhelmed with choosing the best products for their body, home, and office.
  • Unsatisfied with their relationships with the men and women in their life and are ready to transform them into satisfying, happy partnerships.
  • Standing at a Career Crossroad.
  • Preparing to start a family and want a healthy baby.
  • Seeking solutions for aging, more energy, and a good night’s sleep!

Are any of these an issue or problem for you?  Would it make sense for us to spend several minutes together to discuss your needs and how HealthyHighway can meet them?  As a Healthy Lifestyle Coach with an emphasis on allergies and wellness, Leesa teaches her clients to make informed choices and enables them to make needed changes for an optimal lifestyle. What you eat, what products you use ~ on your body and in your home and office, how you talk to yourself ~ it all matters!

Contact me today and Start today to live a healthier, happier life!    Don’t live in Atlanta?  Not a problem.  We do virtual coaching worldwide!

I look forward to helping YOU Live a Happier Healthier Life! Remember, Excellent Health is found along your way, not just at your destination.

Live Well!

Leesa A. Wheeler

Leesa A. Wheeler
Healthy Lifestyle Coach, Artisan, Author
 
ring ~ 770-393-1284
skype ~ healthyhighway

5 Things I Have Learned About Tackling Stress

5 Things I Have Learned About Tackling Stress

A Buddhist monk once said, “If a problem can be solved, why worry? And if it cannot be solved, what’s the good of worrying?”

Wise words, but admittedly difficult to practice. Problems are inevitable, and they cause stress. And stress can contribute to serious health conditions.

Like everyone else on the planet, I have my stressful days and moments. Finding ways to deal with them has taught me how to sift the useful tips from the less effective ones. Let me share some stress-relief strategies that really work for me:

1. Wait it out.

I can never forget what my father said while battling a bout of flu. “I am enjoying it,” he said, red-nosed but smiling. “It’s nothing but the body’s channels cleansing themselves. Another two days, and I’ll be fine!” This, when he had work deadlines he could not miss.

Another time, when I lay bedridden from multiple fractures, my surgeon gently told me the secret to dealing with the depression: “Think of the pain as a tunnel that you are slowly swimming through. At the end of that tunnel, there is light. Power yourself toward that light.” The image helped me tremendously. Stress will happen. Let it come and go. Hang in there!

2. Walk away.

When it comes to stress, don’t indulge in give-and-take, because stress can be contagious. It rubs off on others around you. And if somebody around you is stressed, the effects can ruin your own mood and day. When I feel a stressful situation developing, I try to move physically away from the scene and situation for a while. I am a book lover, so a trip to a bookstore always calms me. Sometimes, I go watch a movie, or just take a nice walk. If things are really stressful, you might consider a solo vacation. Nature offers a comforting shoulder indeed.

3. Analyze your anger.

It is easy to feel stressed when someone is saying harsh, hurtful words to you. And it is indeed difficult to put yourself in the other person’s shoes at that moment. But if you can teach yourself to empathize, you could let go of the intense negative feelings that stress brings. Remember, when someone says things that are painful for you to hear, it is likely that he is also feeling much of the pain he is inflicting. Here is a good reminder from writer William Arthur Ward:  ”It is wise to direct your anger towards problems — not people; to focus your energies on answers — not excuses.”

4. Use humor.

A good laugh fills your lungs with fresh, oxygen-rich air and releases feel-good endorphins into your system. The result: you feel instantly better. When stress comes knocking, treat yourself to some episodes of Candid Camera, a  Marx Brothers movie, or a stand-up comedy show—nothing works like a hearty dose of laughter. Shared laughter is even better, so take a friend or two along. Your stresses will have no choice but to melt quietly away!

5. Pamper your body.

This is my favorite way to deal with stress. Over the years, I have noticed how easily the body responds to a little TLC. A quick trim and blow-dry or facial massage are enough to take your mind off your stress. Checking into a good day spa or a spa resort over the weekend not only revitalizes your tired body, but also rejuvenates the unhappy mind. You emerge feeling more confident, energetic, and ready to take on the world. Massage, in particular, reduces muscle tension and improves blood circulation. A trained therapist knows and works on the right marma points, thus aligning the body’s healing energies to make you feel better.

What are your own strategies for dealing with stress? Do share!

By Shubhra Krishan

Shubhra Krishan

Writer, editor and journalist Shubhra Krishan is the author of Essential Ayurveda: What it is and what it can do for you (New World Library, 2003), Radiant Body, Restful Mind: A Woman’s book of comfort (New World Library, 2004), and The 9 to 5 Yogi: How to feel like a sage while working like a dog (Hay House India, 2011).

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Excellent Health is found along your journey and not just at your destination. Would it make sense for us to spend several minutes together to discuss your Health Issues or Problems and how HealthyHighway can help YOU Live YOUR Optimum Life? Please complete the information on our Contact Us page to schedule your consultation today! I look forward to helping YOU Live YOUR Optimum Life!

Live Well!

Leesa A. Wheeler

Leesa A. Wheeler

Healthy Lifestyle Coach, Artisan, Author

ring ~ 770-393-1284

write ~ info@healthyhighway.org

visit ~ www.HealthyHighway.org

consult ~ www.healthyhighway.org/contact.html

chews ~ www.Chews4Health.com/Leesa

enjoy ~ www.Chewcolat.com

follow ~ www.twitter.com/HealthyHighway

learn ~ www.healthyhighway.wordpress.com

like ~ www.tinyurl.com/Facebook-HealthyHighway

join ~ www.tinyurl.com/googleplusHealthyHighway

link ~ www.linkedin.com/in/leesawheeler

 

Happiness IS Contagious

Study: Happiness IS Contagious

 

It looks like Bobby McFerrin was right when he sang, “don’t worry be happy.” According to a study published in Statistics in Medicine and conducted at Harvard  University and the University of California, happiness is contagious.

That’s good news for friends, neighbors, and spouses of happy people.   The study found that when a person becomes happy, a friend who lives  close to the happy person has a 25 percent higher likelihood of becoming happy  too. The spouse of the happy person has an 8 percent increased chance  of happiness, and the next-door neighbors have a 34 percent  chance. But there’s more.

The researchers conducted a review of other studies, including the ongoing  Framingham Heart Study and the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health.  Upon analysis the scientists not only found that certain relationships are most  impacted by happiness, they propose a theory called the “social contagion  theory” of ”three degrees of influence“ This is where  the study results get exciting. Lead researcher and professor at Harvard Medical  School, Nicholas Christakis, says that “Everyday interactions we  have with other people are definitely contagious, in terms of happiness.” While  that may seem obvious, he adds that the effect goes well beyond the  people with whom we have direct contact. When one person  becomes happy, the effect can spread by three degrees, which includes friends of  friends.

The researchers assessed people’s responses to survey questions,  including:  “How often during the past week would you say:  ‘I enjoyed  life? I felt hopeful about the future?’”

Of course, happiness may come in waves and, as a result, there are challenges  linked to studying happiness. But, when you consider the belief that there are  only 6 degrees of separation linking people, and that we can influence 3 degrees  of those people, it is quite a remarkable notion that if we make an effort to be truly happy (no, not the fake stuff!) then we can have a profound effect on  those around us.

By Michelle Schoffro Cook

Michelle Schoffro Cook, MSc, RNCP, ROHP, DNM, PhD is an international  best-selling and 14-time book author and doctor of traditional natural medicine,  whose works include: 60 Seconds  to Slim, Healing Recipes, The  Vitality Diet, Allergy-Proof, Arthritis-Proof, Total Body Detox, The  Life Force Diet, The Ultimate pH Solution, The 4-Week Ultimate Body Detox Plan,  and The Phytozyme Cure.  Check out her natural health resources and  subscribe to her free e-magazine World’s Healthiest News at WorldsHealthiestDiet.com  to receive monthly health news, tips, recipes and more. Follow her on Twitter @mschoffrocook  and Facebook.

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Excellent Health is found along your journey and not just at your destination. Would it make sense for us to spend several minutes together to discuss your Health Issues or Problems and how HealthyHighway can help YOU Live YOUR Optimum Life? Please complete the information on our Contact Us page to schedule your consultation today! I look forward to helping YOU Live YOUR Optimum Life!

Live Well!

Leesa A. Wheeler

Healthy Lifestyle Coach, Artisan, Author

ring ~ 770-393-1284

write ~ info@healthyhighway.org

visit ~ www.HealthyHighway.org

consult ~ www.healthyhighway.org/contact.html

chews ~ www.Chews4Health.com/Leesa

enjoy ~ www.Chewcolat.com

follow ~ www.twitter.com/HealthyHighway

learn ~ www.healthyhighway.wordpress.com

like ~ www.tinyurl.com/Facebook-HealthyHighway

join ~ www.tinyurl.com/googleplusHealthyHighway

link ~ www.linkedin.com/in/leesawheeler

 

Simple Moments of Happiness

Simple Moments of Happiness

 

Happiness is still a mystery to most of us, but glimpses of it are to be  found in simple moments like these…

  • A fresh-from-the-farm meal, enjoyed in the garden with your family.
  • Popcorn at the movies.
  • Listening to an old song and leafing through the album of memories that it  stirs up in your mind…
  • Throwing “should” to the wind and letting the moment take you away!
  • Time spent with your best friend, even if it is a quick cup of coffee.
  • The sight of butterflies in a garden full of blossoms.
  • A lung full of pure, sweet, mountain air.
  • Children playing in the rain. Children playing anywhere.  Children.
  • A new shirt or dress that makes you feel fit and radiant.
  • The smell of vanilla and cinnamon filling your home.
  • Those moments before bedtime, when you curl up with a beautiful book.
  • A look of love from someone you love.

Really, happiness can be so very simple! A quick gladdening of the heart, a  fleeting but fulfilling emotion…

Please add to the list. I would love to hear about the things that make you  happy!

By Shybhra Krishan

Shubhra Krishan

Writer, editor and journalist Shubhra Krishan is the author of Essential  Ayurveda: What it is and what it can do for you (New World Library, 2003),  Radiant Body, Restful Mind: A Woman’s book of comfort (New World Library, 2004),  and The 9 to 5 Yogi: How to feel like a sage while working like a dog (Hay House  India, 2011).

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Thank you for visiting!  I believe that Excellent Health is found along your journey and not just at your destination. Would it make sense for us to spend several minutes together to discuss your Health Issues or Problems and how HealthyHighway can help YOU Live YOUR Optimum Life?   Please complete the information on our Contact Us page to schedule your consultation today!  I look forward to helping YOU Live YOUR Optimum Life!

Live Well!

Leesa A. Wheeler

Healthy Lifestyle Coach, Artisan, Author

 

ring ~ 770-393-1284

write ~ info@healthyhighway.org

visit ~ www.HealthyHighway.org

consult ~  www.healthyhighway.org/contact.html

chews ~ www.Chews4Health.com/Leesa

enjoy ~ www.Chewcolat.com

follow ~ www.twitter.com/HealthyHighway

learn ~ www.healthyhighway.wordpress.com

like ~ www.tinyurl.com/Facebook-HealthyHighway

join ~  www.tinyurl.com/googleplusHealthyHighway

link ~ www.linkedin.com/in/leesawheeler

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6 Ways to Detoxify Your Heart

6 Ways to Detoxify Your Heart

 

 

This time of year, there is info everywhere on how to detoxify your body.  Whatever toxin you want to remove, or part of your body you want to cleanse,  there’s a smoothie for that! Now, I love smoothies, and I believe that physical  detoxification is an essential health practice (especially by eliminating those  toxins to begin with — for my full views you can read Organic Manifesto and Demand Organic!). But I also believe that the most toxic  toxins start in our hearts. And for true health, healing, and happiness that’s  where we need to start. (By the way, I am not a therapist or doctor, just  someone who has personal experience in this area).

The Power of Emotional Healing

Don’t numb it, FEEL it. This is the hardest and first step.  How many different methods do we employ to avoid feeling what we really feel?  Drugs and alcohol are the easiest ways to recognize the numbing effect. But we  can also use food, TV, religion, sports, crafts, or just plain emotional  repression. Yes, emotions can be truly painful, but it’s the pain of living, of  personal growth, of healing. Let yourself feel what’s in your heart. Truly feel  it. Find a safe place and let those feelings wash over you.

Do the forensics and unpeel the layers. Often, what we first  think we are upset about isn’t the true thing that is bothering us. Our emotions  come in layers. The first layer might be anger. I AM ANGRY!!!!!! But when you  peel away the layers, what might truly be driving that is loneliness, or fear,  or hurt. This is where talking with a therapist can really help. Sometimes it  really helps to have someone help us dig out from under all those layers we’ve  covered our hearts in. As a parent, I often find that when a child is cranky or  annoyed, taking time out to sit and talk with them and help them get to the  original feeling can be transformative and enlightening for everyone.

Ask the universe for guidance. Sometimes it can be really  hard to get to the source of what is actually causing us pain or anger. When  that happens, it helps to carve out some quiet time in nature and ask for help.  The universe will often speak back through nature, through “synchronicity,” or  through bringing you teachers, if you are open to it. Sometimes those teachers  come in the form of a book, or a situation and suddenly you realize that yes,  the universe DOES listen! That’s when detoxifying your heart starts to get fun,  because it starts to feel like an adventure.

Replace fear with love. Easier said than done, right? Wrong. It’s easy.  Whenever you feel fear, question it and the situation. Ask yourself, what would  love feel like in this situation instead of fear? The world is filled with  threats and meanness and angry people–but imagine the pain they must be feeling,  the hurt in their hearts! It won’t get any better by adding to it. The key here  is trying to see the world from the other person’s perspective. I think this  gets easier as we age, since we now experience first-hand things our parents  might have felt, for example. It’s like exercise, the more you do it, the easier  it gets. And just like exercise, YOU are the ultimate beneficiary.

Let it out and let it go. This step requires action and the  courage to act, but is key to the healing process. Once you have identified what  is truly the toxin in your heart, the only way to get rid of it is to let it go.  If there is something you need to say to someone. SAY  IT. But say it with love. If there is something you need to do, a change you  need to make, MAKE IT. But make it with love. If there is something you need to  express, but don’t have the words, CREATE IT. But create it with love. Your job  here is not to hurt someone else (although sometimes that happens), but to have  them truly HEAR what you have to say. That doesn’t mean they will change. In  fact, they most certainly won’t. But YOU WILL. You will feel better, lighter,  happier, cleaner.DETOXIFIED!

Forgive yourself. Things will never be perfect. You will  never be perfect. Other people certainly will never be perfect (especially me!).  We will never eliminate every toxin — and in fact, the toxins are there for a  reason — just like all that bacteria in our bodies and world that seems bad and  dirty but in actuality we can’t live without. Every mistake, every wrong action  happened. You can’t change it. All you can do is apologize to the other  person/people and apologize to yourself and vow to learn and grow from it.  That’s living. That’s life! And it’s beautiful in all it’s imperfections, even  ours.

By Maria Rodale

6 Foods That Make You Smell Good

6 Foods That Make You Smell Good

 

Cinnamon: its lovely scent not only suffuses your home, but also lingers on to make you smell good!

Citrus fruit: split open a ripe orange, and you’re greeted with an instant  burst of refreshing fragrance, and a light spray of juice. Eat the orange, and  you’ll feel your mouth feel fresh, too. What’s more, citrus fruit is more  readily absorbed by the body, so you give off a pleasant scent.

Cardamom: the sweet, spicy seeds of green cardamom are a favorite ingredient  in mouth fresheners.  I never buy commercial packets, preferring instead to  simply split open a pod and pop the seeds in my mouth. For a long time after,  the mouth feels fresh. Besides, cardamom is a powerful healing spice that boosts  immunity.

Fenugreek seeds: they are a wonderful aid to smelling good. They are also  excellent for strengthening bone health. Soak them overnight in clean water, and  munch on them in the morning. At first, they taste slightly bitter, but as you  chew, the flavor sweetens and feels wonderful in your mouth.

Milk: tone down the strong odor of garlic by adding milk to your menu.  Low-fat or whole fat, either version of milk improves the way you smell.

Jasmine tea: if you’ve been in a lift with someone who has just had coffee,  you know what that smells like. A cup of pleasant, floral jasmine tea, on the  other hand, leaves you smelling good. If you drink herbal tea often, your  digestive system works better, which in turn helps your body smell good.

In general, avoid red meat, which are proven to cause unpleasant body odor. A  plant-based diet consisting of fresh produce, whole grains, sprouts, nuts and  seeds cleanses you from within and keeps you smelling fresh.  (Leesa recommends choosing organic when possible!) 

By Shubhra Krishan

Shubhra Krishan, Writer, editor and journalist Shubhra Krishan is the author of Essential  Ayurveda: What it is and what it can do for you (New World Library, 2003),  Radiant Body, Restful Mind: A Woman’s book of comfort (New World Library, 2004),  and The 9 to 5 Yogi: How to feel like a sage while working like a dog (Hay House  India, 2011).

Which Ways Are You Brave?

Which Ways Are You Brave?

When I started working on my latest book about how fear makes you sick and  how courage helps you heal, I had the nerve to tell Matt I was writing the book  for fearful people like him. (Note to self: Keep some thoughts private.)

Not surprisingly, Matt got offended and we had a bit of a tiff, which we can  now laugh about enough for him to give me permission to tell you this story.

Dirty Feet

For years, I’ve been calling Matt “Dirty Feet” from the Gandhi quote, “I will  not let anyone walk through my mind with their dirty feet.” I call him Dirty  Feet because I’ve spent the past five years taking sometimes terrifying career  and financial risks, and these particular breed of risks frighten Matt, who  projects his fears onto me, as if I don’t have enough of my own, leading me to  question myself. I’ve had to build a bit of a bubble around myself so I can feel  safe while taking sometimes radical risks, like quitting  my secure job in medicine or turning  down a book deal that didn’t feel quite right and losing my agent as a  result.

There’s More Than One Way To Be Brave

At first, I got pissed when Matt, who thinks of himself as brave, not  fearful, got defensive and felt insulted. But then I had an epiphany.   While he might be fearful about money and other career hooey, Matt is super  brave when it comes to love and relationships. From the day I met him ten years  ago, he was fearless in his expression of affection, in a way few men have ever  been with me. There were none of those silly games people play. I always knew  exactly how he felt, and he was brave enough to risk emotional intimacy from the  get-go.

I, on the other hand, straight out of an abusive marriage, was not so brave.  I guarded my heart. I made him earn his way in. Even when he did, I often gave  him only small pieces of my heart in measured doses, one teaspoonful at a  time.

It’s not just me that brought out the bravery in Matt. I’ve also witnessed  him putting his heart on the line in other relationships, risking rejection,  hurt, loss, or judgment in order to express his desires and needs.

I, in contrast, have only just this year started to become brave in my  relationships, as I’m learning to keep  my heart open with people I love, as I’m  teaching my daughter to do, as I’m taking  risks with my friendships by asking for what I need, and as the recent  loss of my dog Grendel reinforced.

Fear In Relationships

After apologizing to Matt and promising not to call him Dirty Feet anymore, I  realized that many of us are brave in one or two aspects of our lives but  fearful in others. As a teenager, I loved fearlessly. But after a failed  engagement and two failed marriages, I wound up pretty guarded when it comes to  love.

Taking career risks, however, is now pretty easy for me. I’m also unafraid to  take creative risks. I take wild leaps of faith all the time when it comes to  business, books, and money. Because I’ve taken many brave risks in the past few  years, most of which have turned out well, I fancy myself pretty fearless.

But when it comes to relationships, my track record isn’t so hot, so I’m more  than a little gun-shy. As far as I’ve come in learning to be braver in my  relationships with Matt, my other family, my friends, and my colleagues over the  past year, I have to admit that I’m still pretty afraid – afraid of rejection,  afraid of not being understood, afraid of being perceived as flawed and damaged,  afraid of not being valued, afraid of really making myself vulnerable. Lately, I  take more risks in my relationships. But it still feels very scary. I suppose,  as Susan Jeffers says, I just need to continue to feel  the fear and do it anyway.

It made me realize that we’re all brave – and we’re all afraid – at least a  little bit. Every one of us has “dirty feet” about something, no matter how big  our balls or ovaries. What varies is our comfort zone. Risks I take with  relative ease might be terrifying to you, while risks you take might leave me  hyperventilating.

Fear Is Personal

So is courage. Bravery exists on a spectrum. Even the most  fearful people have moments of wild courage, and even the most fearless can be  found cowering under the table sometimes. We all exhibit courage in our own  unique ways too.

Some, like Kathleen Prophet  who refused surgery for cervical cancer and chose to heal herself, are brave in  battling health issues.

Some, like Martha Beck, who risked  it all to write Leaving  The Saints and step away from her religion in order to step into her  faith, make brave spiritual choices.

Some, like Pamela Madsen,  author of Shameless,  make brave sexual choices, bucking convention to follow their desires.

Some, like Chris Guillebeau,  who chose to give away $100,000 to those who attended his World  Domination Summit in order to help make the world a better place, make brave  financial decisions.

Some, like Tama Kieves,  a Harvard lawyer who left her job to find her calling, make brave career  choices.

Some, like Vikki  Johnson, are brave enough to give away a kidney to save a distant relative’s  life.

Some, like Chaz  Bono, who had the courage to transition from a woman to a man, are brave  enough to come out of the closet and be unapologetic about who they really  are.

Some have the wild courage to leave relationships that weigh them down, or  even cause bodily harm. Some are brave enough to get sober and stay clean.  Others dare to heal from unspeakable traumas.

The capacity of the human spirit to find the courage to do the unimaginable  continues to leave me in awe.

How Are You Brave?

Are you brave in career or finance, love and relationships, sex, your health?  Do you take spiritual risks? Do you take creative risks? Are you willing to face  your past? Are you brave enough to grow? Are you courageous enough to take  heroic action?

Tell us… how are you brave? Post your comments, and if you’re  willing to share your story in more detail, please help me write my next book  about how fear can make you sick and courage can heal you. Submit  your courageous story here and you might be featured in my next book!

Ever curious,

Lissa

Lissa Rankin

Lissa Rankin, MD: Creator of the health and wellness communities LissaRankin.com and OwningPink.com,author  of Mind Over Medicine: Scientific Proof You Can Heal Yourself (Hay House, 2013), TEDx  speaker, and Health Care Evolutionary.   Join her newsletter list for free guidance on healing yourself, and check  her out on Twitter  and Facebook.

How Eye Contact Affects Our Brains

How Eye Contact Affects Our Brains

 

Did you ever play the Eye Contact Game as a kid? You’re supposed to  sit  directly across from another person and stare into his or her eyes  for as long  as possible while keeping a straight face. I don’t think I  won a single game;  every attempt would end in a fit of nervous giggles.  And as an adult, I feel  even weirder locking eyes with someone for too  long. There’s just something  about prolonged eye contact that makes you  feel vulnerable and exposed, as if  the person looking into your eyes has  access to your inner thoughts and  feelings. A loved one’s lingering  look can trigger a rush of happiness, but too  much eye contact with an  acquaintance or a stranger can bring on sudden  discomfort. How, exactly,  does eye contact affect us, anyway?

The Look of Love That old adage about eyes being the  window to our inner selves  isn’t far from the truth. We can feign a frown or a  smile, but it’s harder to fake expressions from the nose up. A true  smile will produce crow’s feet, and someone  who’s angry will narrow his eyes a  bit, according to body-language  experts. We learn a lot by looking into another  person’s eyes, a  behavior that’s ingrained in us from the start. As babies, we  use  adults’ gazes to figure out what’s worth our attention. In a 2002 study   published in Developmental Psychology, researchers found that  infants  followed people’s eye direction, rather than head direction. Eye  contact also  helps our younger selves with memory recall. Researchers  at MIT discovered that  four-month-olds were more likely to recognize  someone later if he or she made  direct eye contact.

Over time, we learn the difference between eye contact that makes our hearts flutter and eye contact  that makes us cringe internally. Oxytocin, also known  as the “love” or “cuddle” hormone, plays a big part in that. It’s a  feel-good chemical that’s released  when we feel bonded with someone,  either emotionally or physically. The release is prompted by a warm hug, holding hands,  falling in love, and so forth. A recent article in Biological  Psychiatry postulated that oxytocin’s the reason we’re so inclined to make   prolonged eye contact with our loved ones. And Dr. Kerstin Uväs-Moberg,  the  author of The Oxytocin Factor, believes that eye contact can  bring  about oxytocin release as well. Perhaps that’s why gazing into the  eyes of  someone you don’t feel emotionally close with can feel so  wrong—the oxytocin  might be there, but it’s not for the right reasons.  It’s also why eye contact  is deemed so essential for couples trying to  reconnect. Looking deeply into  each other’s eyes might rekindle  forgotten feelings.

A Simple Gaze Inspires Complex Behaviors Even if we don’t  appreciate meaningful glances from just anybody, we  do look favorably upon  those who look directly at us. Researchers at  the University of  Aberdeen asked  a group of people to look at two  pictures of faces that were almost  identical—the only difference was  that one face had eyes looking away and the  other’s eyes looked into the  camera, mimicking eye contact. Whether the  subjects smiled or looked  disgusted didn’t make much difference; instead, men  and women found the  faces making eye contact most attractive and likable.  According to the  journal Nature, the brain’s reward center is  activated when one  makes eye contact with a good-looking person. Not only do we  like  looking at attractive people, but it makes us feel even better when they   look our way.

Because eye contact is linked directly to our emotions, it has an  effect on  our behavior, too, as researchers at Tufts University proved.  Study  participants encountered a dime left in a phone booth and were  approached by a  random person claiming it as his or her own. When that  person made eye contact  with the participants, they were more likely to  give back the dime. Having  someone look directly at them made them more  honest, probably because their  inner thoughts—namely, “This dime isn’t  mine”—seemed exposed.

Direct gazes also prompt increased participation from people in groups  because it makes them feel more included. Dr.  Roel Vertegaal, an expert on eye  communication between humans, showed  that the amount of eye contact a person  received during a group  conversation was proportional to how much he or she  participated. Eye  contact also forces us to pay attention more: a 2005 joint  study by the  University of Wolverhampton and the University of Stirling found  that  viewers remembered what a speaker said better if he looked directly into   the camera at least 30 percent of the time.

This improved attention to detail shifts the other way if  someone’s expected  to answer a question while making eye contact with  someone else, as evidenced  by a University  of Stirling study. Kids  answered questions correctly only 50  percent of the time if they had to  look at someone while doing it; their scores  improved significantly when  they were allowed to avert their gazes. Eye contact  requires so much  mental work that it becomes difficult to think of much else in  the  process. It’s easy when our eyes are focusing on someone we trust and   love; we can concentrate solely on the adoration, instead of on keeping  up a  conversation. But most of us can’t even look into an acquaintance’s  eyes and  keep a straight face, let alone attempt complex problem  solving.

Use Eye Contact with Discretion Eye contact can help us  feel incredibly bonded or incredibly creeped  out, depending on the person in  view. It can make people more honest or  make them appear more attractive. It  has the power to enhance memory or  cause us to forget everything else but the  irises in front of us. Think of how many people we lock eyes with on a daily   basis, be it at the grocery store or during a conversation with a  coworker.  It’s a wonder we can get anything done!

Luckily, there’s a social difference between strangers and loved  ones when  it comes to eye contact time limits. A certain amount is  necessary for social  functioning (how weird is it when the person you’re  talking to refuses to look  you in the eyes?), but anything more than  that gets far too close for comfort.  Though we do it all the time, eye  contact is clearly one of the most intimate  behaviors we engage in. We  may look into people’s eyes throughout the day, but  we reserve the  prolonged kind of gazing for those we keep closest to our  hearts.

By Vicki Santillano, DivineCaroline

At DivineCaroline.com, women  come together to learn from experts in the fields, of health, sustainability,  and culture; to reflect on shared experiences; and to express themselves by  writing and publishing stories about anything that matters to them. Here, real  women publish like real pros. Together, with our staff writers, they’re  discussing all facets of women’s lives from relationships and careers, to travel  and healthy living. So come discover, read, learn, laugh and connect at DivineCaroline.com.

 

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