Drowning in Goodness

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The time just seems to slip away on me at the moment.  The days are getting warmer and sunnier and as a consequence the opportunities to do more are mounting up ….. yes, I feel that I am currently drowning in goodness!

This is a first-world, privileged problem to be sure yet that doesn’t make it feel any less real and at times I have to pinch myself a bit and say ‘WTF …. you have so much.  If there is too much going on let go of something.’  However this is where my biggest fault lies …. I’m useless at letting go!! I like to thing I’m getting better on the material side however that internal voice that keeps telling me I need to do more is constant.

As a consequence I sign myself up to too may things or decide I want to get too many things done in a certain time frame …. I accept the free language course, I plan a workshop, I offer to volunteer, I begin to re-vamp website, I write that blog – yay, doing that ;), I create new power-points, I work on an EFT programme all at the same time as home-schooling, keeping house and trying to keep sane! Yep … so really feeling like I am drowning in goodness.  How do you let go of all that goodness though?  How do I prioritize which gets my attention first?  Usually it is the loudest ones that get first dibs … themselves that is ;).

So here I am sharing a thought instead of the power-point I was hoping to have completed or doing course work that I was hoping to finish.  Here I am letting go of all the demands (for the next hour or so at least) and going to enjoy the fresh air in my lungs and the Spring sunshine on my face.

Sometimes a break

I hope that if you’re reading this and feeling the same you can join me in my life-ring … before diving back into it all.

Arohanui

Y

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Misguided Self Love

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The last couple of weeks have been a bit of a roller-coaster here.  Lots of emotions have been dealt with, both kids have been unwell, a long weekend of travel embarked on, family dramas and with all that a LOT of tiredness and everything which comes with that!

For me, my way of coping and keeping on moving is to resort to my ‘security blanket’ (AKA Food).  So as I was beginning to berate myself for eating all manner of things at all manner of times and generally for ‘self sabotage’ behaviours I remembered a saying I heard a while back.  “What we see as self sabotage is actually misguided love’.  Now before your scepticism sets in I’ll explain a little.

take care how you speak to yourself

Thanks quotesology.com for this.

The (scary) truth is that we don’t continue to do something unless we are benefiting in some way – all of us!  This may be hard to swallow however in my overeating and eating foods which I know will cause me pain in the long term I am also getting the instant gratification of having a treat or even (most usually) it keeps me busy so I don’t have time to think about how tired I am or all the things I need to deal with.  I’m benefiting and getting something out of those seemingly unwanted behaviours, in short eating when I’m tired and/or stressed gives me comfort through avoidance.  In my quest to feel ‘better’ I use whatever means I can and usually the ones that were programmed in a long time ago, as in stress we usually revert to old patterns.

Now my logical brain knows that my actions don’t actually make me feel ‘better’ in the long run however in the here and now those actions are hitting the spot, even if only for a few brief moments.  Introducing the misguided self love 🙂  So my aim through these weeks while I get back to healthy eating is to acknowledge that my actions are trying to bring me ‘help’, rather than making myself feel worse by questioning why I am so bad at eating well in times of stress.  Man, it is HARD!! Years of doing the ‘hard talk’ feels impossible to let go of most days however I’m hoping that if I begin to treat myself with a little more respect and kindness by accepting that my actions are intended (however misguided they may be) to help then I may just be able to move on faster.

Hope this finds you loving yourself and being kind to yourself regardless of what the day brings and how hard it may seem.

Arohanui

Y

www.becominghealthy.co.nz

Kitchen Cures for Headaches

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Since the last ‘Kitchen Cures’ post was a bit of a favourite I thought I would post another one this week.  I heard this morning  on the radio that anyone who has avoided the flu so far this winter shouldn’t congratulate themselves just yet as they predicate – not sure who exactly this ‘they’ are but anyway 🙂 – another dose of flu to make the rounds.

Herbs are fantastic healers.

Herbs are fantastic healers to have close.

With flu usually comes headaches so if you do find you are being weighed down with ill health and sore heads this Spring then try out some of these simple kitchen cures.

Headaches are usually the body’s response to stress, both physical and/or emotional.  Stress causes muscles to contract and tension to arise; it can even affect blood flow. First and foremost though is using some common-sense.  If you know the cause of the headache then either remove yourself from that or cease whatever is causing it.

Lavender:
Rubbing lavender essence on your temples can work wonders for relieving and clearing away headaches.  Lavender is a well known sedative, antidepressant and relaxant.  Be sure to use a good quality oil when you are applying it to your skin.

Chamomile:
Why not try a quick easy cup of tea to relieve that head?  The combination of the compounds with in chamomile which relax you and ease pain and a sit down with a cuppa may just be the ticket to clear that headache for good.

Towels:
Yes, strange as it may first appear towels can help to relieve and often clear your headaches.  Colour therapist would add to this a purple towel or piece of fabric.  Colour or not this does help 🙂 Tie a towel firmly around your head, covering the eyes and have a quick lie down.  Sleep will come if you need it otherwise just 10-15 mins of fully resting your eyes and body can help.

Basil:
Making up a tea from dried or fresh basil is a favourite of a French Herbal Folk healer.  It not only relieves the pain, it also eases the restlessness that can accompany headaches.  If you don’t fancy drinking the stuff then try this compress made from 1 teaspoon of dried basil soaked in 1 cup of hot water for 10 mins (then strained) to which 2 Tablespoons of Tincture of Witch Hazel has been added.  Once the basil liquid has cooled apply it as a compress to the forehead and temples for a magical headache reliever.

Chives and Ginger:
If your headache is from sinus congestion then try this teas made from chives  and ginger. Steep 1 ½ Tablespoons of finely chopped chives and ½ teaspoon of finely shredded ginger root into a cup of boiling water for 30 minutes. Cover while the chives and ginger are seeping. Drink lukewarm while sitting for a rest.  In 20 minutes of less your head should feel much better. Repeat as needed.

Hope this finds you happy, healthy and not needing these ‘cures’ any time soon.

Arohanui

Y

www.becominghealthy.co.nz

Creating a Stress-Less life

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Thought I would share this article I wrote for Resonate e-magazine in September – now that I’m allowed to. Copyright 2014 Yossarian Fay 🙂

We all know about stress right?  I mean, in this busy, online, interconnected world where there is a ‘need’ to update, up-skill or up our performance daily there is hardly a moment that goes by without stress! I doubt that there is anyone reading this who has not felt the weight of stress on their shoulders at some time or another.  If there is someone out there who hasn’t felt stress then…..  Can you please, please e-mail and let us all know how you do it!

Stress, a term borrowed from physics, basically describes a force which produces strain on a physical object. Sometime in the 1920’s though, the term stress began to be used within the medical field and became a way of describing a huge range of non-specific issues which caused the human body to function irregularly.  The stress itself is a result of the hormones released in our ‘fight or flight’ response to events in our lives which strain us. In short, we ready ourselves for the perceived dangers in the world. Unfortunately for us though, in our modern age these dangers have changed from actual ‘physical’, external dangers to ‘mental’ dangers we perceive internally, more often than not.  Stress then perpetuates itself as there is no outside trigger to signal that the threat has gone.

Charles R Swindoll once wrote ‘…..life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I react to it…..” So it is with most of us, emotions and attitude dictate everything. The same applies with stress so I’d like to reword Swindoll to say that ‘Stress is caused by 10% of what actually happens and 90% of how we react’.   Our own mental arguments, inner critics and pushers keep us wired.  When we have a deadline to meet it is just that a deadline, there is nothing more to it.  We can either meet it or not. Our brains however begin to perceive it as so much more, as a possible danger to our sense of well-being or our position in life, and this is when the stress begins to creep in.  We feel that if we don’t meet deadlines then we have failed in some way or that others will think badly of us.  We create a ‘demon’ out of it by letting it loom over us with all our other tasks and deadlines. In the end the deadline becomes the force which gets the adrenal glands started, the cortisol pumping and then the stress reactions begin to descend.

The thing is that there are different kinds of stress, both good (the stuff that makes us productive and creative) and bad (the one that causes anxiety and illness), and by changing a few things we can begin to convert some of that bad stress into a more positive one.  Imagine again our deadline. What if upon feeling the stress kick in we began to break the task down into smaller chunks so that we can see the deadline is manageable? What if we began thinking of all the other times we have succeeded in meeting a deadline and in doing so change our outlook to a more positive one. What if we went for a gentle walk (strenuous exercise can actually cause more cortisol to be released) and let the exercise release some endorphins to counter-act the cortisol?  Even thinking of all those times we haven’t met deadlines or completed tasks and the world didn’t collapse will help to put the ‘perceived’ danger into perspective.

Stress will always be there, however it is completely within us to turn that stress into a positive motivator rather than allowing it to build into a destructive force which halts us in our tracks. So at this point I offer you a few simple ideas to change that negative stress into something more positive and in doing so help to create a stress-less life.

Making a plan – Today’s Negotiable Trio (TNT)

This simple tool ‘Today’s Negotiable Trio’ (TNT) will help you to define just three things which you wish to achieve. The idea is to just focus on three things that need doing and feel GREAT when we complete them! These will be your TNT which you need to focus on for the day.  To gain a bit of balance maybe choose one which is personal, one which is business related and one which is family related. Of course when the deadlines arise all three can be whatever you need them to be 😉

Creating Energy – Exercise and movement

You knew it was coming, didn’t you!  Yes, it is vital for us to move our bodies as part of creating our ‘Stress-Less’ life.  Gentle exercise helps us to renew our energy and refresh our minds while the body releases endorphins which are our ‘feel good’ hormones.

Not only will exercise and fresh air help you sleep better, it has also been proven to improve your mood and mindset in life which will help you deal with difficult situations better. Getting out of the environment which is ‘stressing’ you and expending energy will actually beget you more energy while reducing stress.

Clearing the negative – Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT)

Much of the stress we feel is caused by our emotional reaction to what is happening to us or around us. EFT is a great tool which you can use to help lessen that emotional response. EFT works on the principle of tapping acupressure points at the same time as talking. By tapping on the acupuncture points you ‘free’ trapped energy and by talking about the issue at hand you also gain ‘headspace’ through releasing your internal chatter to the world.  Science also shows that tapping calms the amygdala. This is the part of the brain which is the body’s ‘alarm’ , signalling when it is time to go into ‘fight or flight’ mode, essentially when it is time to stress out! To learn more about EFT head to Becoming Healthy or EFT Universe for a guide on the Emotional Freedom Technique.

Counting your blessing – Re-enforcing the positives

It is exactly as it says above, when the stress creeps in take some time out to focus on all the positives happening in your life. Focus also on all the successes you have felt in the past along with those times when everything turned out just fine despite a rocky start.  In doing this you will be actively changing the way your mind is operating and so when you come back to look at the ‘situation,’ which is causing stress,  you will be able to view it more objectively.

Nourishing your body – Eating and drinking well

Just as your car eventually won’t work if you are putting in diesel instead of petrol, your body can’t work with the ‘wrong’ kinds of food in it.  Nourishing our bodies with good food so that it can work at its best is important when creating a ‘Stress-Less’ life.  When the body is ‘stressed’ from combating the ‘wrong’ kinds of foods for us it begins to come into a state of dis-ease and from there more stress occurs.

In order to create the ‘Stress-Less’ life we are aiming for we need to be listening to our bodies, nourishing it and also giving it time to rest in between meals. How this occurs will be different for everyone.  It is so important to take time to really listen to your body and how it reacts with foodstuffs to find the ‘right’ nourishing foods for you.  Considering the amounts we eat, the frequency at which we eat and the quality of the food are all important to creating a ‘Stress-Less’ life in our physical bodies.

So there they are; a few ideas for creating your own ‘Stress-Less’ life.  A fact of life is that there will always be stress; however how you deal with the stress which occurs is up to you. Try the ideas out, give them ago and use them to help you create a life where you are in control not your emotional response to stress.  You create your own realities; changing stress into a positive motivator is a far nicer reality to live with.

Arohanui

Y

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Easing through the stress

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Honestly there really isn’t that much to stress about with this move; we are getting packers, the house has been freshly painted, all the maintenance on the property is done, it is a landlord’s market here with hardly anything to rent, himself will be here pretty much until we move and the kids are old enough to help.  Yet, me being me I still find something to worry about and stress over!

Our house on the hill

Our house on the hill

Last shift (2.5 years ago) my eating wasn’t as good as it was now and I resorted to late nights mixed with V energy drinks and rescue remedy to see me through. This time I am in much better health and with the absence of sugar in my diet there will be no V this time around 🙂 However the stress has made an old problem re-surface; diverticulitis.

I have pretty much sorted this diverticular dis-ease, which I have had for close to a decade, with changing my life style and eating however in times of stress is does appear for short bursts with vengeance!  In these times I get tapping, keep up the exercise and Bach Flowers to help the emotional side and I usually revert to a gluten free, diary free, increased liquids along with a nut and seed free way of eating which equates to a fairly dull old meal time.

So imagine my delight when I read a great wee recipe in my running magazine for a yummy wee ‘pancakes’ which fit into the above criteria!  I thought I would share it here because they really were very easy, yummy and best of all healthy 🙂

Coconut and Banana Pancakes

Thanks to Runners World Magazine – November 2014

  •  2 bananas
  • 45g ground almonds
  • 15g desiccated coconut
  • 1 egg
  1.  Mash bananas (just realised I did both when the recipe says one and to use the other for a topping – still yummy though) in a bowl and stir in the ground almonds and coconut.
  2.  Beat in the egg. (Recipe says to add in milk to make a batter however in using both bananas in the recipe I didn’t do this).
  3. Heat some oil in a frying pan and place a few teaspoonful amounts into the pan, keeping them separate.
  4. Cook for 3-4 minutes until golden underneath and then flip over and cook till the other side is golden.
  5. Serve as they are for a yummy morning tea or top with a drizzle of honey and  sliced banana for an easy dessert.
  6. Enjoy

Hope this finds you all happy, healthy and pain-free 🙂

Arohanui

Y