Gratitude: The Surprising Solution to Better Health

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A little gratitude can go a long way in having a positive effect on your health and life.

Did you know that gratitude can have a tremendous impact on your health? A recent study, titled “The Role of Gratitude in Spiritual Well-Being in Asymptomatic Heart Failure Patients,” found that it plays an important part in overall wellbeing.

The study found that being thankful helped improve the health of heart disease patients.

This has wider implications, and researchers believe it can help anyone. So, you don’t have to be a heart disease patient to benefit from showing gratitude to others. Anyone can be thankful and see improvements in their health.

Try these strategies to use gratitude to benefit your health:

  1. Understanding the heart of gratitude. Being thankful is an important part of staying healthy.
  • Do you show your gratitude when it matters?
  • Do the people in your life feel you appreciate them? Have you told them how much you enjoy the things they do?
  • Being grateful may require a conscious effort. It’s important to start noticing your thought processes and how you react to various situations.
  1. How to show gratitude to your loved ones. The people who are closest to you need to know you appreciate them.
  • You can begin to show gratitude by thanking them for a specific action.
  • You can also show your thoughtfulness by doing small things for them and making their lives easier.
  • Sharing your time is important. Offer to do something your loved ones may enjoy. This will show you care and pay attention to their lives. It also shows you want to help.
  • Everyone loves compliments, so give them out frequently with love.
  1. How to show gratitude to your coworkers. They spend hours with you and need to know you appreciate them.
  • Send thank you notes to your coworkers to show them you care.
  • Show your gratitude by bringing them lunch or offering to buy it for them.
  • Sometimes just listening to your coworkers can be a good way to show your gratitude.
  • Bring flowers to work to brighten your coworkers’ day.
  1. How to show gratitude for yourself. Recognize the great things that are happening in your life and be thankful for them each day.
  • Sometimes making a simple list of all the positive and good things in your life can start you on the path to gratitude.
  • Remember to give yourself compliments, too!
  • Thinking about the positive things you have done for others can help you see how you impact the world.
  1. How to show gratitude to strangers. You may not know their name or life story, but the strangers you meet throughout the day can also benefit from gratitude.
  • Does the person who makes your coffee stand next to a tip jar? You can make a generous tip and help brighten their day. You can also point out something they have done well.
  • You don’t have to know your servers’ names to be grateful. You can thank them, compliment them, and share something positive.

Gratitude is an important part of life, and showing it to others can help strengthen your health. It’s crucial to note the positive things occurring every day. There are many ways to be thankful, you can share the joy with others.

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All content on this ​website was created and/or compiled by ​Natural Stress Relief Women. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material (including text and images) without express and written permission from this ​site’s author/owner is strictly prohibited.

If Your Life Feels Stuck Use These Tips to Move On

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To be free, you must first find out why your life is stuck. Then you can move on.

Do you feel like your life has been in a rut? Why is it that our lives rarely change, even when we’re miserable?

There are forces within our minds that conspire to keep us stuck. They’re also spectacularly effective at accomplishing this. In fact, they’re so good, we don’t even realize it’s happening.

These reasons may very well be the cause of your rut:

  1. You lack the knowledge necessary to make a change. You might know that you need to be more confident, but you might also lack the knowledge of how to develop confidence. Not all skills are available at our fingertips. You might need to do a little studying before a change is possible.
  1. You don’t know specifically what you want. If you think you might like to be a fireman, but also think becoming an accountant sounds interesting, you’re stuck. At some point, it’s necessary to make a clear decision and set a goal. If you can’t choose a vacation destination, you’re stuck at home.
  2. You lack willpower or fail to use it effectively. Willpower is limited, but it’s great for creating new habits and behavioral patterns. Sticking with a task after the urge to quit surfaces can develop willpower. Continue for another 5 minutes. Increase the amount of time each week until you can work through the urge to give up.
  • Use your willpower to develop small habits that can grow into useful routines.
  1. You can’t deal with being uncomfortable. Anxiety, nervousness, and fear are great for preventing you from jumping off a 10-story building. But they’re worse than worthless when it comes to keeping you stuck. Some level of discomfort accompanies any change, but your emotions are misleading you. You’re not in any real danger.
  • Use your logic to talk yourself through it. “Nothing bad can happen from giving a speech. In fact, there are many benefits.” Use the logical part of your brain to override your primitive instincts.
  • There are many techniques to lower your levels of discomfort to more manageable levels. Meditation, prayer, and counseling are a few that can be beneficial.
  • Start small and push through slight discomfort. Your ability to handle the bigger and scarier situations will grow with experience.
  1. You give up too quickly. Change can take time. 80% of the change you ultimately see won’t reveal itself until at least 80% of the work has been completed. Your early efforts show little results, but things are happening behind the scenes. It’s necessary to persevere to see a meaningful change in your life.
  • Learn to be a finisher. Start completing all the little tasks in your life. If you decide to walk on the treadmill for 20 minutes, keep going until you’re done. Avoid letting yourself off the hook until an activity is 100% complete.

Making any change can be a challenge. Understanding your roadblocks to change can enhance your ability to bring about meaningful changes in your life. Have an objective and develop habits that support that objective. Learn to lower and deal with uncomfortable emotions. You have everything within in you necessary to create a spectacular life. Go for it!

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All content on this ​website was created and/or compiled by ​Natural Stress Relief Women. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material (including text and images) without express and written permission from this ​site’s author/owner is strictly prohibited.

Inspirational Tip Of The Day: Stay Grounded and Be Inspired!

Have you ever read a quote or inspirational saying and felt very inspired? So inspired in fact that you wrote the quote down and placed it somewhere near at hand to refer back to again and again. Turns out inspirations and quotes can help women stay grounded, focused, inspired and empowered.

 

Back to Basics: Visual Journaling Techniques

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Give visual journaling a try. It can be a powerful stress management tool.

When you were a child, you probably drew pictures showing how you felt about having a new baby brother or learning to swim. Now that you’re grown up, you can still use art to process your emotions and reduce stress.

Many artists and therapists use visual journaling techniques to help them with their work. Whatever your personal goals, see how images can be part of your strategy for moving ahead.

Benefits of Visual Journaling

  1. Articulate your feelings. When you’re struggling to put your emotions into words, it may be easier to sketch them out. The shapes and colors you choose could be revealing.
     
  2. Increase your willpower. Each time you update your journal, you remind yourself about the positive changes you are trying to achieve. It’s a simple way to create triggers that reinforce new habits.
     
  3. Manage stress. Protect your mind and body from the effects of chronic stress. A journal soothes you without any extra calories or extravagant expense. You may even want to carry it with you to the airport or dentist’s office.
     
  4. Stimulate your creativity. Any art project can trigger innovative thinking. You’ll discover solutions to longstanding challenges at home or work.

Visual Journaling Techniques

  1. Record your feelings. Let whatever you’ve been bottling up come pouring out. Ask yourself how you’re feeling. The answer may surprise you.
  2. Mark up a book. Find inspiration by searching for prompts in a children’s story or an advertising supplement. Alter the pictures or the text. Add your own illustrations.
     
  3. Doodle a little. Even if your time is limited, you can see what appears spontaneously when you put pen to paper. Your free form doodling may uncover your subconscious concerns about your health or your family.
     
  4. Assemble a collage. Browse through magazines for pictures or collect various types of items you can use. Paste them together according to your own design.
     
  5. Dream on. Park your journal on your nightstand before you go to bed. You may be able to capture a snapshot of your dreams while your memory is fresh.
     
  6. Add text. Maybe you want your journal to combine words and images. Invent captions or drop in some favorite quotes. Turn your adventures with dieting or dating into a graphic novel.
     
  7. Note the date. Try keeping track of the day and time that you update your journal. An ongoing log will help you to see changes or patterns that develop over time. You may also notice how your mood or energy levels shift from morning to night.

Techniques for Using Your Visual Journal

  1. Keep it private. You may decide that you want to keep your journal for your eyes only. Knowing that you’re the only person who will see it could help you to feel free to experiment and divulge your innermost thoughts.
     
  2. Browse online. There are many websites and forums devoted to visual journaling and art therapy. Look at samples on Pinterest. Participate in a community and exchange support.
     
  3. Collaborate with a friend. If you tell your friends and family about your journal, they may be interested in joining you. You could discuss each other’s work. You could also suggest themes or materials that you could both work on together.
     
  4. Show it to your therapist. If you’re already seeing a counselor or plan to start therapy, you may want to incorporate your journal into your sessions. Mention your projects to your therapist and follow their recommendations.

Creative expression is good for your health and wellbeing. Lift your spirits and clarify your thinking by keeping a visual journal.

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All content on this ​website was created and/or compiled by ​Natural Stress Relief Women. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material (including text and images) without express and written permission from this ​site’s author/owner is strictly prohibited.

Positive Thinking Tips: Small Successes Lead to Greater Goals!

 Small successes can have a huge impact on how we feel about ourselves.


CelebrateSmallAchievementsMy approach to small successes is to be thankful for being able to achieve them. It’s one of the positive thinking tips I implement in my daily life. 

I know that taking little steps is what leads to eventually reaching significant targets.

I take on challenges that I know I am able to conquer. I avoid overwhelming myself with the enormity of a mammoth end result. Instead, I focus on manageable goals along the way and celebrate the small victories.

Debt sometimes seems like an unending challenge. When I look at my overall debt, I feel discouraged. At times, I feel I lack the resources to clear what I owe.

But I give myself credit for the small, consistent payments I am able to make each month. I set manageable repayment targets for myself and feel encouraged when I make those payments.

My career plans are moving along nicely because I am focused on the journey at hand. I avoid looking at how much further I have to go. I work with today’s goals today.

Today, my small successes have a huge impact on how proud I feel about myself. I know that being able to reach small goals consistently proves my ability to reach larger ones. I commit to keep persevering on the road to greatness.

Self-Reflection Questions:

  1. What are some of the things that my success teaches me?
  2. Why is it important for me to acknowledge the small achievements?
  3. In what other areas of my life do I see improvement as a result of achieving small goals?

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All content on this ​website was created and/or compiled by ​Natural Stress Relief Women. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material (including text and images) without express and written permission from this ​site’s author/owner is strictly prohibited.

Are You Always Angry? You’re Making Yourself Sick!

arguing-couplesAre you angry all the time?  Do you fly off the handle at little things?  When you’re angry is it virtually uncontrollable, causing you to go into an almost blind rage, yelling and screaming and cursing and maybe even getting physical as well?

If so, you’re doing a tremendous amount of damage to those around you, especially if they’re children.  A child’s sense of security and well-being is tied in to how the adults in the home act and when they are uncontrolled, a child’s entire world is turned upside down.  And of course anger can affect your job, your spouse, your neighbors, and so many others.

You Are Making Yourself Sick!

But have you ever considered how anger affects you, especially your physical health?  People that are always angry and that have no self-control often suffer from ulcers, digestive disorders, headaches, blurred vision, dizziness, vomiting, acid reflux, interrupted sleep, severe weight gain or loss, dizzy spells, thinning hair, acne, dry skin, elevated blood pressure, heart disease, and heart attacks.

There are many reasons for these physical problems but those reasons are very much tied to anger and the physical reactions it brings about in the body.  Unfortunately many of these problems are very serious and some are potentially fatal.  Elevated blood pressure, heart disease, and other cardiovascular diseases can bring about an early death.  Interrupted sleep can actually cause brain damage and a buildup of toxins in the blood.  It can also mean falling asleep during the day at inappropriate times such as when behind the wheel of a car which then can have tragic results.

Obviously there may be other problems that can cause these health problems but if you have a temper problem and also notice problems with any of these other conditions, chances are they’re related.  Temper brings about a chain reaction in the body that elevates the heart rate and produces adrenaline in very unhealthy ways and in unhealthy measures.  Most of the systems of the body also overreact, including the digestive system and respiratory system.  This overreaction on their part can cause damage when left unchecked.

Control Your Anger To Live A Longer, Happier Life

Are you always angry? There are many reasons to consider learning anger management skills but of course the damage your temper does to your health is one very important one.  Everyone deserves to live the longest, healthiest life possible and if anger is in your way of that long and healthy life, isn’t that a good enough reason to learn to control it?

How to Forgive, Release, And Be FREE!

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Forgiveness does not only benefit the person you’re forgiving. It can be very beneficial to you too. I’ve learned to forgive, release, and Be FREE!

Each day, I see the benefits of offering forgiveness to others. I see how it helps to put someone’s mind at ease. I know that granting my forgiveness to another helps them move on with a light heart and clear conscience.

I feel rewarded when I forgive someone for offending me. I am happy to have the opportunity to resume a positive relationship with them.

Sometimes it is challenging to overlook an offense. When I am hurt, I initially feel unwilling to give my trust back to someone. But I take the time to think it through.

I believe in my role as protector of good in the world. Even when I am mistreated, I put aside my pride. I know it takes two to resolve any conflict.

Forgiveness gives me a stronger sense of purpose.

I choose to be a bigger person who learns from negative experiences. I shun the chance to hold onto something that keeps my heart dark.

I am a good example for my loved ones because I practice forgiveness. I am proud to be a role model.

Today, I acknowledge that forgiveness builds me up. I strive to make amends. I am poised to be strong and positive because I choose to forgive others.

Now it’s YOUR turn.  Answer these self-reflection questions:

  1. In what ways can I forgive others without portraying myself as weak?
  2. What positive attributes do I develop as a result of forgiving others?
  3. When was a time I failed to intervene during a conflict when I possibly could have helped?

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All content on this ​website was created and/or compiled by ​Natural Stress Relief Women. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material (including text and images) without express and written permission from this ​site’s author/owner is strictly prohibited.

Top 10 Financial Skills For Adults To Master During Economic Uncertainty

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When faced with challenging periods in your life, it’s a good idea to master these financial skills for adults to help you through.

The ability to survive on a modest income is a skill. However, it’s a skill that could be useful for anyone, especially in these uncertain economic times. Even if you’re great with money in general, you might not have the expertise to live on a low income, and such expertise could come in handy.

Master these financial skills for adults and you’ll be prepared for any financial challenge:

  1. Be able to differentiate between wants and needs. What you consider to be a need will change when financial resources are scarcer. Before spending any money, ask yourself if the item or service is a true need or a want.
  2. Save anyway. Saving is often a challenge during good times. It’s even more challenging when money is limited. It’s still important to save a portion of any income.
  3. Know how to budget and have discipline. Just about anyone can create a budget, but it’s sticking with the budget that’s hard. It takes practice and discipline. It’s no fun to barely scrape by each month, but a budget makes it possible. It also highlights the little ways to get ahead each month.
  4. Use your car as little as possible. It costs money to use an automobile. Combine shopping trips. Create a carpool to minimize driving to work. If possible, use a bike or walk.
  5. Find an additional source of income. A part-time job can be a big help. There are many things you can do on your own instead of seeking additional employment. You can rent out your car, rent a room in your home, buy and sell items on Craig’s List, or any number of other activities.
  6. Learn to eat inexpensively. A bag of rice costs less than a dollar. Chicken leg quarters are less than $0.70/lb. Choose the least expensive type of fruit. Food is a considerable expense for most families. It’s also an expense that’s easy to minimize if you know how to eat healthy on a budget.

Hit the local food bank. Most cities, towns, and counties have one or more food banks. You typically can’t get enough to satisfy all of your food needs, but you can take care of 50%.

  1. Purchase used clothing. Use clothing stores are everywhere. For example, Goodwill sells most of its clothes for slightly over $4. The first Saturday of each month is half-price.
  2. Be aware of all the public assistance programs. Medicaid, welfare, food stamps, heating subsidies, and the Affordable Care Act are just a few programs that are available in most areas. If you’re used to living a middle-class lifestyle, you might not have the slightest idea of how to take advantage of these programs. Become familiar with what all is available in your area.
  • Most areas have employment assistance or job training programs to help you find work.
  • You can also receive a big tax break if your income falls below certain levels.
  1. Find inexpensive healthcare. Often pharmacies or bigger stores, like Walmart, have an inexpensive clinic. You might be able to find a free clinic if you do some research.

     

  2. Find less expensive housing. The citizens of the United States enjoy some of the most spacious living quarters in the world. In many countries, it’s not uncommon for ten or more people to share a small apartment. You can probably find a less expensive place to live that will work.

Surviving during challenging financial times requires a new way of viewing money and the world. The less money you have, the more scrutiny each dollar requires before it’s spent. If you find yourself with less income than you’re accustomed to, it’s important to aggressively conserve at every opportunity. Challenging times require a new set of skills.

Please Share Your Thoughts 

In the comments below, share with us:

1. Share with us what financial strategies have helped you through trying times.
2. Which one of my tips do you think would be particularly helpful?

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All content on this ​website was created and/or compiled by ​Natural Stress Relief Women. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material (including text and images) without express and written permission from this ​site’s author/owner is strictly prohibited.

 

Tips For Self Employed Entrepreneurs Who Want To Be Healthy

15 branded blog image 5-4Being self-employed makes it 100 times easier to stick to a workout.

Now you have much more control over your time and you will be much more able to choose when you want to work and when you want to relax, or exercise.

The problem is, if you aim to finish early at the end of the day and workout then, you will almost always find that it never actually happens. The problem is, you’ll still get tired and once you get into the ‘flow’ you’ll find it’s almost impossible to break out of it and to return later on while being just as productive.

Working out first on the other hand, means you’ll have more energy and a better mood as you work. It’s just a matter of being disciplined enough to convince yourself to do so.

Here are some tips for self employed entrepreneurs that can help.

Set Everything Up the Night Before

One way to help yourself workout before you start work is to set up your gym kit etc. the night before. The aim here is to create the minimum barrier between you and the gym so that there’s no effort involved other than the workout itself. Setting things up the night before means you can just grab your bag and go and that helps a lot.

Make Your Workout Fun

If you’re going to convince yourself to workout first thing in the morning then it can help a great deal to do a workout that you actually find fun. Working out can be fun – and especially if you do something like rock climbing or sparring with a heavy bag.

Find a workout that you enjoy and don’t worry too much about your strict goals – they’ll come with time as long as you put in the effort.

Oh and your workouts don’t have to be super long either. Ten minutes is better than nothing if that’s all you have!

Join a Nearby Gym

Which gym do you join?

The nearest one. It’s as simple as that. This way you’ll save a ton of time and feel much more inclined to workout. And if you don’t have a nearby gym, then you should workout from home.

Stress

If you’re struggling to workout at all, then you should bear in mind that the problem is most likely linked with stress or your energy levels. It may just mean you’re taking on too much work, in which case: try to tune it down a bit!

How To Relieve Stress Headaches

TensionHeadacheDoes your head hurt? 

Headaches are not unusual; it’s estimated that some 95% of people have gotten a headache at some point in their life. 

As a matter of fact it would be a little unusual to meet someone that can claim that they’ve never had a headache before. 

But for some, headaches are not only common they’re chronic and consistent and may even be so severe that they interfere with everyday life, relationships, and career.

So why does your head hurt?  The answer is probably complicated because doctors have pinpointed some 300 or more causes of head pain. 

When you learn of how complicated the muscles and nerves are that surround the head and neck, it’s no wonder that people get headaches.  Any of those muscles can be cramped up, pulled or overextended and any of those nerves can be pinched or otherwise injured – all from just a quick twist or sudden jarring movement.

But for many, headaches have a root cause that is much different than the cause of pain they may experience in any other area of the body, and that root cause is stress. 

Being stressed, tense, upset, worried, nervous, frustrated, irritated, and experiencing any other negative emotion can give a person a headache. 

Yes, these things can affect other areas of the body as well – your back can hurt, you can experience nausea or tingling in the fingers and toes when you’re upset and any other number of physical symptoms that accompany emotional symptoms. 

But there is a definite connection between stress, tension and headaches, and it’s even believed that tension related headaches are the second most common type of headache there is, right behind migraines.

You may already realize that there’s a connection between tension and headaches; the question is, now what?  How do you address that tension and how do you make the pain go away? How to relieve stress headaches?

Very often those suffering from chronic stress headaches need to address the stress itself rather than rely on medications to make the headache go away. 

It’s true that many over-the-counter medications are effective in fighting headaches and as long as you’re not overusing or abusing them there shouldn’t be a problem with their occasional use. 

But compare the situation to wearing shoes that are too small – when your feet hurt, should you take a pill to make the pain go away or buy better shoes?  Obviously addressing the cause of the pain is much better than just using medication in trying to make the pain go away.

So how can you address tension? 

You probably can’t go live on some isolated mountain where there are no people around to make you tense, and even then your life would probably have tension – have you ever heard how annoying mountain goats sound? 

So rather than thinking of running away, here are three (3) quick suggestions for eliminating or at least reducing tension in your life.

1.  Face it.

Smothering or denying your problems will not help you to fix or address those problems and is probably one major cause of tension over them.  You may think that you’re putting the problems out of your mind when you deny they exist or don’t want to think about them, but in reality they’re still simmering right there under the surface, causing you tension and stress.

2.  Make a plan.

When you write out the steps needed to face the problems giving you tension you realize that things perhaps aren’t as overwhelming as you may have thought they were.  You also have a plan in hand for how to address those problems.

3.  Get help.

Think that your problems are yours to deal with on your own?  It’s true that no one likes a whiner or some sorry, “sad sack” that is always complaining about their lot in life, but going to the other extreme and bottling everything up inside is not healthy either.  Sometimes just talking out a problem with a trusted friend or family member can help to relieve tension quite a bit.