Have you ever been on the roller coaster of exercise and nutrition and found yourself doing a particular program for a while and then fall off? Thousands of individuals do this every New Year. You set your intention to make this change, and it seems to fade just a few months later. We ALL strive for lasting change.
Well, the New Year is not yet here, and we don’t need the New Year to make a permanent change. That “someday is today.” Let me explain. I’ve been in the fitness industry going on twenty years. Lifestyle, health, and fitness is my passion—rather, helping individuals find their path to becoming the best they can be in all areas of life is what I truly set my intention for, why I do what I do.
Going back to lasting change, I truly believe change in anything you set out to do has to start with your mind. Your thoughts lead to decisions and decisions lead to actions. Many of us have set the goals to change that are more surface laden and not deep rooted and concrete. Over my twenty years, I have had many clients come to me and set the goal of weight loss. I truly honor this, but I challenge all of my clients to get more concrete and specific as to what they want and “WHY” they want their goal. I believe with absolute certainty you need to be specific about what you want and why you want it. Your goal has to be mapped out.
What is the key ingredient to lasting change? What will this specific weight loss do for you in your life? Will this weight loss bring you renewed energy to get down on the ground and play with your kids? Will this energy bring you the self-confidence that you may have been wanting for so long in your life? Will this weight loss give you the vitality to enjoy your retirement in the coming years? Answering these questions shows you how specific you need to be. What does it truly mean from deep within you to obtain the goal you are after? What is the internal (personally for you and you only) and external (for family or another external reason outside of you) meaning as to why you NEED and WANT to conquer the goal you set out to accomplish?
Once you established your “WHY,” make it a concrete statement and place the goal in front of you where you read it on a daily basis and as a constant reminder of the importance of conquering this goal to make it lasting. It is a constant reminder of how badly you truly want lasting change. Put it on your bathroom mirror, in your planner, your fridge, etc.
Just like nature has seasons of change, so does life. It is inevitable that you will encounter the winter and with it the trials will come, but you will have the power of your “WHY” to help guide you through to find the springtime and ultimately your lasting change. Truly anything and everything that leads to growth in your life comes through challenge.
So, the next time you set out to establish the next area in your life of personal development, take the time to reflect “WHY” it is so important to you. Make this “WHY” statement concrete, very specific, and get in depth within yourself to find the importance of conquering it for lasting change. Just like in the weight room, to make a muscle grow, you have to continually do repetitions just like we do in the personal development area of our minds. Read your “WHY” statement through daily repetition. You become what you focus on.
By Ann Bischel, Mayo Clinic Health System
Got the flu?
Don’t worry quite yet. There are ways you can self-manage:
- Hydrate. Be sure to drink plenty of liquids, such as water, juice and warm soups, to prevent dehydration.
- Rest. Catch up on your sleep to help your immune system fight off the infection.
- Medication. Generally, you’ll need nothing more than bed rest and fluids. You also may consider an over-the-counter pain reliever to reduce some of the aches associated with the flu. But in some cases, your doctor may prescribe an antiviral medication. If taken soon after you notice symptoms, the medication may shorten your illness by a day or so and help prevent serious complications.
If infected with the flu, it’s important to take certain measures to ensure it doesn’t spread to others around you:
- Wash your hands. Thorough and frequent hand washing or an alcohol-based sanitizer are effective ways to prevent the spread of germs.
- Contain your coughs and sneezes. Cover your mouth or nose when you sneeze or cough, and wash your hands after. To avoid contaminating your hands, cough or sneeze into a tissue or the inner crook of your elbow.
- Avoid crowds. By avoiding crowds during the peak of flu season, you may reduce your chances of infection and spreading to others. If you’re sick, stay home for at least 24 hours after your fever subsides to lessen your chance of infecting others.
If you do get the flu, remember these tips to help get over it quicker and avoid spreading it to others around you.
If you have flu symptoms and are at risk of complications, see your doctor right away.
Ann Bischel is a nurse practitioner in Express Care at Mayo Clinic Health System in Eau Claire, Wisconsin.
Melissa Wilson always enjoyed makeup, often playing with her mom’s makeup when she was a child. But in her teen years, Mel suffered from acne and scarring. Later she found out she has polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) and that hormone imbalance was causing her acne. After trying many products—that didn’t work—Mel decided to try creating her own, natural skin-care products.
She’d been creating her own eyelash serum for a while, and friends and sisters encouraged her to go ahead and run with that. The serum is all natural—every other brand she’d tried from the salon would turn her eyelids colors, and she spent hundreds of dollars trying to get her eyelashes to grow better. She loves DIY projects like refurbishing furniture—all kinds of making and creating. She explains, “I’ve always been an artist, and I’ve always been an entrepreneur. I already had the ingredients. I had the time. I decided to make a bottle for each of my sisters. It was around Christmas-time, and as I texted my friend that her bottle was ready, she asked if I’d make one for her friend. So I did. Then I created a professional-looking label for the bottles. At first I was going to call it Elnaturel, but my sister, who is sassy, said, ‘You forgot the M, duh! Why not call your brand Melnaturel, playing off your name?’ And I thought, ‘Great idea!’ Soon after that, I posted on my Facebook page that I had 8 extra bottles available for $10 each. I ended up selling 165 bottles in that one post. I hadn’t even set up an official business yet! So I got to work ordering ingredients, setting up an LLC, getting insurance, and making everything legal, and on January 22, I launched the business—Melnaturel.”
Meanwhile, she had been working on looking for other natural skin-care products for herself, researching all of the reasons why she should be using completely natural products on her face. She had tried everything under the sun to treat acne but couldn’t get rid of it. Then when she started going 100 percent natural—no harsh chemicals—she started to see a major difference with scarring going away and acne clearing up. Then other people became interested in her research and products. By the second month of Melnaturel, she had already sold product in eleven states, and now her products are being used in over twenty states and in Australia.
She explains: “Once I started the official business, I started testing product with girls in various locations around the country that I knew were having problems. I mailed them product to test and give me feedback. Then I grouped them according to skin type and did various trial tests. If the trial worked, I’d bring it out to market. I had known it worked for me, but I wanted to know it was working for other people. And now I have frequent users all over the country.”
More information and Melnaturel’s full product line can be found at www.melnaturel.com/, or by following Melnaturel on Facebook, Instagram & Pinterest. You can also purchase some of her products locally at The Local Store (Volume One) in Eau Claire.
By Dr. Lynn Thompson
Stress is defined as the organism’s response to environmental pressures or demands either internal or external. The causes of stress in humans can include any event that the individual perceives, consciously or unconsciously, as a threat. It has been reported that at least 90 percent of all diseases are related to stress and the lack of the coping skills to alleviate the long-term reactions. This particular time of year has special risks for uncontrolled stress.
This time of year we find to be more stressful from lack of sunshine, increase in sugar consumption, and “family” or community traditions. We live in an area around the 45th north latitude and as such are very limited on the direct sunlight during the winter months. Stress can present as depression (also increased in the winter months). When the skin does not have enough sunlight, Vitamin D is not manufactured. If you do not have adequate sun exposure, you should include good sources of Vitamin D in your diet from egg yolks; raw cow milk; fatty fish like sardines, mackerel, salmon, and herring; shrimp; chicken liver; and orange juice.
Ironically, orange juice is very high in sugar. In a one cup serving (8 ounces), OJ has 124 mg (milligrams) of Vitamin C (more than 100 percent of the US government’s Recommended Daily Intake of about 60 mg/day. Research dating back to 1999 recommends an increase to 120 mg/day). Dr. Linus Pauling discovered that Vitamin C is needed by the body to fight bacteria and viruses. Glucose (simplest form of sugar found in the body) and Vitamin C have similar chemical structures. There are times when the body can confuse sugar and Vitamin C. When the blood sugar level reaches 120mg/dl, the body’s ability to destroy the bacteria and viruses is reduced by 75 percent for the next four to six hours. Here are some not-so-sweet facts about sugar, just to name a few.
- The average American consumes 100 pounds of sugar per year. Crazy, right? It is even crazier when compared to the mere 8 pounds of broccoli the average American consumes annually.
- The other white powder. Sugar is more addictive than cocaine.
- Sugar is hidden almost everywhere, especially in processed foods.
- Sugar in disguise: corn syrup, sucrose, dextrose, maltose, glucose, fructose—watch out for the “ose” at the end of the word!
- Refined table sugar (aka sucrose) lacks vitamins, minerals, and fiber. In fact, your body has to tap into its precious mineral and enzyme stores to process it.
- If your body does not properly digest sugar (and simple carbs for that matter), it contributes to candida overgrowth. If you are not familiar with candida, it is worth a Google or Bing search.
- It feeds the bad guys. Sugar contributes to an acidic environment, which cancer and other diseases love!
- It contributes to Type 2 diabetes.
This time of year, many of us celebrate religious holidays and overindulge in spending, eating, and lack of sunshine. Rather than participate in activities that increase stress levels, take a deep breath, go for a walk, have an attitude of gratitude, enjoy a hearty laugh, and share a healthy, low-sugar meal made with love and joy.
A cheerful heart is good medicine.
Dr. Lynn Thompson holds doctorates in chiropractic, naturopathy, and homeopathy. She has been involved in healthcare for forty years. Dr. Lynn resides in Foster with her husband, John, and travels extensively around the United States presenting classes on health and wellness utilizing essential oils and nutrition.