I don't know if you're like me, but some days it seems so difficult to focus! Tell me I'm not alone here!!
I've got four easy steps that have worked for me countless times that I'd like to share with you if this is your struggle too!!
It has been shown that meditation boosts our immune system, increases positive emotions and improves our focus. So let's get all these wonderful benefits!! All we need to do to begin meditation is find a quiet spot and sit comfortably. I like to close my eyes and pay attention to my breathing. Feeling it entering my body and leaving. I focus on this for awhile and then I begin to notice my thoughts. I don't try to change them, just notice them and let them pass.
When I began meditating, I couldn't do it for more than 5 minutes. I've now worked myself up to 15 minutes. Do what works for you and I know you'll see all those wonderful benefits.
2. Make A List
I am a type A and RED personality. My mind races all the time with ideas and things that need to be done. If I didn't make a list I would be completely lost. Getting my thoughts out on paper helps me to clarify what I'm doing and where my focus needs to be. A couple tips on making a list that I have fine tuned over the years:
* Keep a notebook by your bed, that way when a thought pops in your head you can jot it down and be able to sleep.
* Make your list at the end of your workday. This allows me to "finish" my work day and move on!
* Tackle the most important items on your list first. We are most alert within the first 2 hours of waking up! Use that momentum to your benefit!!
Scientists have shown that exercise increases focus by up to two or three hours after you complete your workout!! How cool is that?? So, not only are we getting the tremendous health benefits from exercise, we now know it's helping our focus as well. This doesn't have to be rigorous, simply walking will do the trick. Feeling that afternoon slump? Get up and walk, even better if you can get outside!!
4. Essential Oils
Now you know I don't do any of the above without applying or diffusing essential oils. Some of my favorites to use are Brain Power, Cedarwood, Frankincense, Clarity and of course Peppermint. You can add any of these to your diffuser and get all the great benefits. I personally love to apply any one of these to the back of my neck for extra focus support. Essential oils are very powerful support as smell is the only way to stimulate the emotional side of the brain!
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Life can sure throw us some curve balls, can't it?? When that happens, we can feel unsettled, scared and overwhelmed. I don't know about you, but when this happens to me, it freezes me. I don't feel like I can do anything and that's the worst thing for me. Immersing myself into a daily routine helps me feel like I can continue to put one foot in front of the other. Before you know it, those things don't feel as scary or unsettling.
There are several things I like to do daily, and I especially need this when I'm in a transitioning phase in life.
1. I use my emotional oils. These are absolutely life saving for me. My go to's right now are Acceptance and Awakening. These blends help me accept what life is throwing at me and then help me emotionally handle what is to come. When we diffuse or smell essential oils, they are very powerful in affecting our emotions. These 2 help me look at these times in life like an ocean, naturally crashing in and ebbing back out. I like to apply Acceptance over my liver and on my ears. Many of our negative emotions are stored in our livers and the outer rims of our ears are our emotional vitaflex points! I use Awakening across my chest so I can smell and breathe it in! We have a number of emotional oils, and I will use others as well. These are my go to's right now.
2. Every day I begin with prayer and meditation as well as journaling. It's important for me to not just journal and read God's words or a daily devotion, but to listen. Meditation is my time to listen to what God has to say to me. I love my New Every Morning devotional book by Parable that I've had for over 20 years. Every year I seemed to get a new message from the day.
3. I immerse myself in self development. What do you want to improve on? Right now I am working through Brendon Burchard's Wellness Master Class. He describes well-being as a combination of wellness (physical) and being (how we are with others) and that it's important for both to truly be well. I'm loving it as he is sharing what they discovered over years of studying and researching High Performance individuals. It came at a great time for me with all the shifts that are occuring. I do not believe that was by mistake!
4. And lastly, your health!! It is so important to pay attention to what you are putting IN your body right now. I don't know about you, but I struggle with this one when I'm not feeling emotionally stable. I tend to want to make really poor choices in food and that makes this process even worse. Concentrate on more vegetables and fruits. If you have that sweet craving, go for the fruit. Also, I have to move! Just walking 30 minutes a day releases endorphins that make us feel good. We reduce our stress levels and we are able to sleep better as well as have better cognitive support! This is huge to help us through these emotionally trying times!!
What else would you add to this list?
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Awareness is the opportunity to DO BETTER!!
Sometimes looking at ourselves is the hardest thing to do. It's so much easier to point the finger at someone else, but truly who do we have the power to change? Did you learn when you were younger the saying, "when you're pointing your finger at someone else, you have 3 fingers pointing right back at you." ??
I don't know if you're like me. To the outside world, I had it all. Financial success, married, amazing kids, we traveled when we wanted. But my heart was yearning for more. I wasn't feeling satisfied and something was definitely missing. I didn't have "heart success"!! It was just a nice package, but inside I was not full.
But here's the key! You have the power to assess exactly where you are at! This is the time to be brutally honest with yourself. It will hurt, you will feel all the feels, you will wonder how it is that you've even come this far in life. This is a time to have a few very trusted people in your life that will be honest with you! You can't change what you won't acknowledge or are not aware of. Some of these things came easy to me and I made huge changes right away. Some of these I needed to hold onto for just a wee bit longer, (and I mean a lot longer) and some things were revealed as I walked down the path! To begin any journey we have to know where we are starting. How exciting that we get to put that pin in our life map and proudly claim, I AM HERE!! And I love that awareness because it means I get a chance to do better and be better!
I have grown more in the last 5 years of my life, been challenged more in my personal development than my entire life. And it all started with that awareness. I hope you'll look at awareness as a challenge; the opportunity that it is!
I just did probably one of the most vulnerable things I've ever done, and that was write my story for a book. It comes out next month along with some very incredible women in a book series called Overcoming Mediocrity ~ Victorious Women. This is where I began sharing the journey to my heart success! I share about not judging a book by it's cover and how an accidental meeting set me up on the best discoveries of my life!!
I hope you'll join me through my journey! You can follow me on social media by clicking on the links below and make sure you SUBSCRIBE to my email list to get my newest episodes sent to your mailbox!!
Science is proving that our lifestyle has a bigger affect on whether we will develop chronic disease or not. The American Cancer Society states that only 5-10% of all cancer cases are genetic. The good news is that means 90-95% is within our control. And doctors are finding lifestyle to be playing a more important role in heart disease, stroke and diabetes. In fact, you can live a life free of these diseases not dependant on medication if you will make a few lifestyle changes.
I encourage you to google the study of Epigenetics. This study is extremely fascinating on how genes are read by cells, and subsequently whether the cells should produce relevant proteins. There is a lot of research on this topic and it ties beautifully into today's blog , as there are studies around what we eat controlling our epigentics.
In today's video portion, I gave you a couple of simple breakfast ideas to replace those processed and highly sugarized breakfasts so many of us eat every day. I want to clarify, as I watched it, that you do not have to add all those fruits and vegetables to your smoothies, these were just great ideas to get you started!!
Let's look at some of the benefits of eating a diet high in whole foods (fruits and vegetables).
- Loaded in Nutrients
- Low in Sugar
- Heart Healthy
- High in Fiber
- Helps Control Blood Sugar
- Good for your Skin
- Helps lower Triglycerides
- Provides Variety
- High in Healthy Fats
- Decreased Risk of Cancer and Heart Disease
- Contains Antioxidants
- Good for your Gut
- Promotes Dental Health
- Less expensive in the long run
You can make simple changes that will have a huge impact on your overall health now and into the future! Start small. Some of the biggest mistakes we can make is trying to overhaul how we eat overnight. This was my biggest struggle as I looked to improve my health over the last 5 years. I would empty out the pantry and fridge, make my meal plan and make it one week. Then life happened and I would scrap the entire process. It was a constant roller coaster for me. The thing that helped me the most was to assess where I was. From there I needed to walk myself into this. So, I began by eating one meal a day that didn't have any processed items in it. After success there, I added another meal and so on. Now some of you can probably make the leap and I applaud you. But if you can't, it's ok. Just start like I did. What happened over time was that I found I began to gravitate towards the whole foods more and more. The processed meals and snacks began to not feel good to my body. I can still make less than favorable choices now, but the point for me is I no longer beat myself up for it and then punish myself by not choosing wisely going forward.
Make sure to check out some of my favorite recipes to help you replace those processed snacks!! FREE RECIPES
I would love to hear from you, do you have a favorite recipe? Feel free to comment below and share this with a friend!!