Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Fall has arrived here in Michigan! For the past two days it has been rainy, windy, and cold! I was scrambling this morning to find pants, sweatshirts, and yes...coats!...for my children as they were preparing for their day at school. All this scrambling and listening to complaints about how cold everyone was got me thinking about other things that need to happen as the seasons change.

Have you ever noticed that you crave salads in the summer but never seem to want to touch them in the winter? As soon as cool weather arrives, are you suddenly reaching for hot teas and preparing soups and warm, heavy casseroles? I do! Yesterday, I ate soup twice! Just as the seasons change, and we adjust our wardrobes from flip flops to closed toe shoes, tank tops to fleece jackets, and shorts to long pants, we also need to adjust what we feed our bodies!

Eating seasonally can be a very rewarding and economical choice. As the temperature outside changes, our bodies begin to prepare for winter as well. We need to maintain body temperature, feel grounded and warm inside. This can be accomplished simply by choosing the right foods! A salad full of cool, crisp salad green and raw vegetables is the perfect remedy to cool an overheated body in the summer. However, if you eat that in the winter on a regular basis, you will likely find yourself feeling cold all the time! A soup full of root vegetables that grow grounded in the earth, mixed with a warm comforting broth or a warm whole grain pasta dish with sauteed autumn vegetables would be a much better choice to help you maintain a feeling of warmth during these cold months of winter.

On the economical side, eating fruits and vegetables that are in season, and local, is much less expensive and practical than purchasing food items that grow in warm climates and ship halfway across the world ($$$$$) for us to indulge in during a time our body may not want, need or crave them. If nature intended us to eat mangos in Michigan in December, it would provide us with a mango tree that could sustain a harsh winter and still bear fruit! Sure eating some fruits, berries and out of season, warm weather vegetables is OK on occasion. Feeding our bodies food that can create warmth, energy, and a feeling of stability and groundedness is a much better choice physically, emotionally and financially for those of us who have to contend with months and months of cold weather!!

So give eating seasonally a try! Instead of eating a bowl of refined grain cereal with cold milk tomorrow, try having a bowl of warm, grounding, energy sustaining whole grain steel cut oats mixed with protein power packed walnuts, drizzled with a little agave nectar to start your day off warm and keep your mind and energy going strong throughout the day!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Dealing With Disappointment...

One of the reasons I became interested in health and wellness was because of my constant search for balance in my life and a way to successfully shed unwanted excess body weight. I was emotionally dependant on food for fulfillment and my body was showing the signs. Food was a very powerful tool for me. It filled me with sweetness, provided warmth and comfort, and powered me through hard, tiring, or trying times.

I have searched out the knowledge of others to help me figure out how to break free from my dependency on this powerful (and delicious) drug and begin to nourish my body with real nutrition (whole foods and love) and balance out my emotions in a much more healthy way. I have learned a great deal in the process and am confident that I have all the knowledge I need to be successful. I love the information so much, I can't get enough, and that is why I am embarking on the journey of creating a career out of helping others find wholeness and balance in their bodies as well as the environments should support them and their efforts.

This is great, right!? I should have so much success to report!! Well, I'm disappointed to share, it's not! The success I was craving, and the pounds I was hoping would just melt right off, are still sitting exactly where they were when I started this journey...which was quite awhile ago.

So why no success? I'm not sure. But it's disappointing to say the least! There have been road blocks...lack of motivation, stress, injuries, moves, sickness, etc...for sure. In contemplating the reasons why I am "stuck" where I am, and evaluating all my actions, I realized I was/am still using food to get me through the ups and downs of my day! These days it's more about getting through stress and the busyness of life, than it is about dealing with extreme emotions, although that arises on occasion. However, the fact that I can recognize that is progress to report! Being able to evaluate and identify your weakness' is a huge first step in achieving a healthier and balanced life. Until you are able to do that, you will likely continue NOT to see success. Knowing our weakness' allows us to plan better, learn how to cope better, and sets us up for success, not failure.

So I have learned something and I am applying what I have learned. Now the next step is to take action and put it all together! Instead of dealing with this disappointment of un-shed pounds by eating yet more comforting foods, I am going to continue to plug along and plan better, eat better, and avoid all the triggers that throw me off better. It may be hard at times, and I will fail at times, but the more we practice, the better we will get, and the healthier we will begin to look, feel and be!

Friday, September 18, 2009

Clearing the Clutter...In Life...

My absence from this blog is pretty reflective of my absence from all things I love lately! I have been very busy and I am ready to slow down, relax, and dig back in as my family settles into the fall routine and the cool weather rolls in. Time to refocus, restructure, and renew!

I have fallen tremendously behind in the world of all things health, balance, and wellness. But I am missing it terribly and putting it back into the forefront of my days. I am prepping to do a three week lecture series on staying healthy, balanced, and stress-free during the holiday season with my friend at our church at the end of October. I am really looking forward to presenting this! I am getting organized and seeing clients, looking for a new office space, and will be launching a new website soon. Things are getting very exciting!

I have been enjoying the final weeks of our farm share vegetables and am very sad that it will be ending soon. I have loved receiving fresh, organic produce right out of the ground week to week. The only problem is that I loved it so much we have nothing frozen for the winter because we ate it all!! I do have an abundance of blueberries stored for the winter so we will be enjoying lots of blueberry baked goods this winter...mmm...

As I think about how I want to go about refocusing my time back on the things I love, I quickly become overwhelmed by the process of getting "caught" up. When this happens to me, I tend to freeze up and do nothing because I don't know where to start. It's all important to me and I have a hard time prioritizing!

This morning, I eliminated one thing (ok...skipped it for today only) from my schedule that has the potential to weigh me down for the rest of the day physically. As soon as I did that, I felt like the whole day was wide open and felt a rush of relief. Yesterday, I officially announced I would not be renewing my lease on my office space downtown, even though I don't have a new one to move into yet. That was also a huge relief!! Just knowing the decision has been made means I can confidently move forward without second guessing if I should. Today, I am also canceling a gym membership that I have had for 7 years. I am comfortable there and like the atmosphere but have found that since moving to our new house, going there is a chore and takes up too much time because of its location. I will be working with my trainer again soon and will also be joining my husband at his gym right here downtown...where I live (hmmm...imagine that...adding convenience!).

I have found that when I eliminate things that hold me back, weigh me down, or drain my time and energy everything else opens up because it has space to breathe! Just by eliminating these few things from my life, even if something is only for a day, I have a new sense of focus, balance and clarity to move forward with other more important projects and responsibilities.

Is there something weighing you down? Is there a project you can delegate to someone else? Eliminate one thing from your schedule or life today and see what opportunities open up to you!!