Category Archives: health little changes no diet encouragement

Keep the joy and say goodbye to stress this Christmas!

The pursuit of perfection has to go!  Be real this Christmas.

It’s so easy to get caught up in decorating the tree with the latest colours, baking Pinterest perfect cookies and shopping for hours for the best gifts.

I really do love Christmas but instead of feeling joyful I often feel grumpy and tired.  

Especially if my cookies ended up like those Pinterest fail photos. haha

My daily TO DO LIST gets too long and my stress level gets way too high.

But this year I’m taking back my joy. I’m setting new priorities!

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I’m making spending time with people my priority this Christmas.

TODAY’S little STEP:  Reduce the stress and increase the joy! Let go of the picture perfect Christmas and be real!

If this has encouraged you please share it on Facebook or Pinterest.

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3 Tips to deal with stress!

Are you stressed or anxious? 

There are big stressful events in our lives that we have little control over.  But some stress we bring upon ourselves. 

These little stressors of everyday life are under our control. 

I’m on a quest to learn how to identify my stressors, reduce my stress or handle it better.

I don’t think we need to go into all the scary details about how stress and anxiety affect our health.  We know it does.

What we need are the strategies to identify everyday stress,

reduce it and handle it better.

What causes me stress? 

What makes my heart beat a little faster? 

What makes my blood pressure to go up?  What causes butterflies in my stomach? 

A) Procrastination is a big one for me.  I think I have lots of time so I leave tasks to the last minute. 

Then I get stressed because I don’t have enough time to do the task well.  Then I also beat myself up a little because I didn’t get the task done earlier.  If my procrastination affects other people then I feel badly about that too.

This is a stressor I have control over.  I can do something about it.

How will I reduce this stress?

I will schedule time to get tasks done early, by actually blocking off a chunk of time. 

I will set an early deadline.  I think I will also add in some accountability. 

I will tell Don my imposed deadline and that will really help me get tasks done early.  

I will apply this principle to getting ready for Christmas this year.  (I hope to post some short videos on Facebook on how to reduce stress over the Christmas season.) 

B) Unrealistic expectations.  I am a ‘To Do List’ kind of person and I have a tendency to put too many things on my daily list. 

I think of all the home tasks that need to bedone.  I think about the preparation for the ministries I’m involved with. 

I think about all the people I should contact or have coffee with.  I think about the exercise I should do and the books I should read. 

I get stressed, because of my perfectionist tendencies, when I can’t do them all.

How will I reduce this stress? 

My new strategy is to have only 4 things on my list.  Those are the true priorities for the day.  Anything else is a bonus.

I’ve been trying this one for a few weeks and it has helped me a lot.

 My list is doable!

C) Thinking and worrying about the future. 

My Mom’s health is failing.  I’m helping her navigate doctor’s appointments and managing awful side effects from medications.

I’m wondering how she will cope this winter.  I want to fix everything and I can’t. 

How will I handle this stress?

This is a stress that I can’t reduce but I can control how I handle it.

I can’t change my Mom’s health but I can control how I think about it.  I can have control of my thoughts with God’s help.    

When I think about my Mom and start worrying about her future, I hold that thought captive for a few seconds. 

Then I say a quick prayer,

‘Thank you God for how you are already working out the details for my Mom. 

Thank you that You care about her. I will trust You.’ 

Sometimes this prayer gets said over a dozen times a day. 

But when I pray like this it puts God back in control. 

I can leave the problem in His very capable hands. 

Just insert your situation into this prayer if you like.

How about you my friend?

Identify some of those daily stressors-those things that cause your heart to beat faster and your blood pressure to go up.

After you identify them, take a few minutes and decide how you can reduce that stress or handle it differently.

Here’s a core verse to claim for our stress and anxiety. 

“You can throw the whole weight of your anxieties upon Him, for you are His personal concern’.  1 Peter 5:7Phillips New Testament In Modern English.  

I love how that version says, ‘for you are His personal concern’.

Wow. 

The God of the Universe cares personally about us and our stress and anxiety.

Today’s littlestep: Identify 3 things that cause you stress. Stressors that you have controlover. Then take a little step to reduce that stress or handle it differently.

I would love to hear what your stressors are and your plans to deal with them.   

Sneak in some exercise-10 tips

Exercise seems hard to add to our already crazy lives.  But when we add incidental exercise into our day it makes a difference.

Incidental exercise is the exercise we get during daily activities. Activities like taking the stairs, walking the dog and doing housework.

Every little change we make to be more active helps us be healthier.

If you move during every commercial break while watching 2 hours of TV you can burn 270 calories a day. That’s one sneaky way to add incidental exercise into our lives.

On those crazy busy days you can still add in little steps!

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Here are some ideas

  • Use waiting times. While cooking dinner do standing push-ups while you wait for a pot to boil.

    Stand about an arm’s length from the kitchen counter, and push your arms against the counter. Push in and out to get toned arms and shoulders.

  • Phone calls. When talking on your phone pace around your home or office.  Remember just 10 minutes makes a difference.

  • Wear a pedometer everyday. Keep track of a regular day and then make a goal to add 2000-3000 steps a day. check out pedometer resources here.

  • Take the stairs. Whenever possible take the stairs, up or down, instead of the elevator.

  • Park further away. Park at the far end of the parking lot and take your packages to the car yourself.

  • Stand more. Standing burns more calories than sitting! Stand more often than you sit.

  • Walk briskly. Don’t dawdle, walk at a quick pace, like you are late!

  • Get outside. Mow the lawn, garden, sweep the walk or wash the car by hand. These activities engage your core muscles.

  • Go get it yourself. If you need something from the basement or upstairs, get it yourself.

  • Store it downstairs. Purposely put frequently used items in the basement. Then you will have to take the stairs.

  • Walk at children’s sporting events. Pace the sidelines during soccer, climb the stairs during swimming or walk during half time breaks.

Most of these incidental exercise tips are ones I use. They have become part of my healthy lifestyle.

My kids still tease me that I find the farthest corner of the parking lot for my parking spot.

My family has gotten used to me walking on the spot during tv or movie watching, as long as I don’t block their view.

I purposely keep frequently used items in the basement so that I have to take the stairs more often.

I am convinced that these little lifestyle changes have helped me to keep the weight off.

Remember our core Bible verse, “And let us not get tired of doing what is right, for after a while we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t get discouraged and give up”. Galatians 6:9 New Living Translation

TODAY’S little STEP: Pick 3 tips to incorporate incidental exercise into your daily life. Every little step does make a difference.

Sites used as research.  Check them out for additional ideas.

easy ways to boost incidental exercise

lazy girl fitness

fitness the easy way

small changes that take off big pounds

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If you have found this helpful I would love it if you would share it with your friends on Facebook or Pinterest.

My 7 best tips for energy and restoration!

Is your life crazy busy? I love spring. It’s my favorite time of year. The snow is finally gone.

The weather is beautiful and I feel so energized. But spring is also a really busy time of year.

Church programs are winding down with special evenings. There are graduations, weddings, and anniversaries to celebrate. For our American friends there are Open Houses to plan and attend for High School graduates.

 

With all the fun activities we can have a tendency to keep running on empty.

How do we get recharged and refocused?

When my life is crazy I have learned that there are some

important things I need to do to cope.

 

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When I looked back over this last year I realized that I feel this way every May and June.

So I decided if I feel this way you might too.

This is a repost from last year. It was too good not to share again.

Here are the tips I’ve learned to stay energized!

1. Get enough sleep. When life is busy it’s easy to stay up late and get more done.

But then I start running on steam and even fun things seem like a chore.

I need to slow down in the evening and get to bed before 11!

If I’m short on sleep I want to eat.

It’s like my body says, “O.K. if you aren’t going to give me enough sleep then give me more food!”

We’ll have a blog post about that sometime in the future.

2. Eat good healthy food.

 As much as my emotions shout for junk food, especially chocolate, I know I need fruit, vegetables and protein.

3. Walk outside. Sometimes my walk is more like a stomp!

It clears my brain and helps me deal with stress.  The beauty of God’s creation touches my spirit.

4. Stay away from caffeine. I’m tempted to stop at Starbucks for a hot tall dark roast coffee to give me the energy to tackle my to-do list, but not anymore.

The caffeine makes me jittery and then I don’t sleep well that night. I’ve switched to sweetened decaffeinated tea.

5. Quiet. No radio, no TV, no background noise. It’s amazing how much silence can refresh me.

6. A good chat with a girlfriend! There’s nothing like a phone chat with a good friend to vent my worries and frustrations.

She doesn’t try to fix it like a man does. She listens, encourages and challenges me when my thinking is way off the mark.

7. SPEND TIME WITH GOD! It’s the most important thing I can do! He resets my priorities.

When I spend time praying, reading the Bible and good devotional books, I remember that God is on His throne.

I can rest because He is in control, not me!

 

TODAY’S little STEP: When life feels crazy take one or all of these 7 little steps to be energized and restored!  But remember it’s not about doing every little step perfectly!  It’s about imperfect progress!

If you have found this helpful please share it with your friends!

 

 

 

 

My life and yours reflected in blogging history.

Is your life crazy busy?  Do you wonder were the days have gone?  That’s how I feel as I look back over this last year of blogging.  As I review my blog statistics I learn about my life and yours too.

Here’s what I learned.

I can see how some major events of my life have been captured and recorded as part of this blog.  Click on the links to go back and read these stories.

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When life knock you down. Can God be trusted?

 
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My 6 day mission trip with no trip!

 

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Reflections from a brand new empty nester!

 

 

I can also see that some topics were very interesting to you.

 

 

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How to make nutrient rich choices everyday!

 

 

 

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8 Smart strategies for food on the go!

 

 

 

How To Get More Instagram Followers iPhone Layout-2

2 Little words you should never say!

 

 

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Healthy snack bar recipe!

 

Pure water is theworld's firstand foremostmedicine!

15 TIPS AND TRICKS FOR WATER HATERS

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MY PRAYER NOTEBOOK, BEST TREASURE EVER!

 

 

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Best benefits of 10 minutes of walking

 

TODAY’S little STEP:  Take a few minutes and read a favorite post!  Share one with a friend too!

My 6 day mission trip with no trip!

IMG_0915.JPGEver wanted to go on a short term mission trip? I have. This week the children came to me instead! We hosted the African Children’s Choir at our Church. I got to bring 3 girls and their chaperone home with me! A two day stay turned into six!

Sadly they left today but not without leaving me with a changed heart and mind.

I’ll tell you all about it next time. Now I have to clean up and get to bed early. Whew I’m tired!

Today’s little step: Be open to new ministries that God brings your way!