Manage Stress Without Pulling Your Hair Out

Stress is unavoidable, but also manageable. If you feel like your stress levels have been up lately, it’s time to be mindful of ways to lower these levels before you begin feeling worse and noticing the ramifications in other areas of your life. Stress management is a crucial part of overall health, and finding what works for you is just as important. Here are my favorite ways to lower stress naturally…

Practice deep breathing. This is my go-to quick fix. When you feel stress building up, take a deep breath. Breathe in for 4 seconds, hold your breath for 4 seconds, and exhale for 8 seconds. Repeat this two or three times, and you will feel incredible afterward. Insider tip: this breathing exercise also helps you sleep like a baby!

Healthy lifestyle. Eating healthy, whole foods and regularly exercising helps lower your stress levels immensely. Focusing on healthy foods and exercise will also boost your energy levels and overall feeling of well-being. Exercise doesn’t have to be anything extreme — a simple walk around your neighborhood will help!

Don’t forget your social life. When you’re drowning in work, it’s tempting to forsake your social life and spend all your time working to get rid of the stress, but this will only have the opposite effect. Spending time with loved ones is a great stress reducer, so find more ways to be social in your busy schedule.

Prioritize your sleep. When you’re not sleeping enough, your cortisol levels will start to rise, which means that this feeling of constant stress will only get worse. On top of this, poor sleep will make you crave caffeine and sugar, which also increases your stress levels. So, to solve both these issues, work on hitting the sheets and getting 7-8 hours of sleep each night.

When you start to implement these ways of reducing stress in your life you’ll be sure to feel a lot better in a short amount of time. Some are only minor changes, while others take a little more effort. What can you start implementing this week to help manage your stress in a healthy way?

Why Autumn is Great for Resolutions

What feelings come up when you think of summer ending and autumn creeping in? Is it one of refreshment and excitement for the new season to begin? Or perhaps you’re disappointed for the summer fun in the sun to come to an end? Which side of the road are you on? Autumn is my favorite season.  I love the cooler weather and seeing the leaves change when I visit my cabin in GA.  The fall colors are my favorite <3

If summer’s half as busy for you as it is for most, the impending fall season may feel like an incredibly necessary wind-down time. As the weather begins to cool down and we gear up for a change, it’s the perfect time to reevaluate your goals that may have slacked off after New Years, and use this time as a second resolution season.  What in your life needs a fresh start? Think about 1 or 2 things that would improve your life for the better, that you’ve been meaning to get around to doing. Does this mean going to bed earlier on a regular basis? Making sure you eat fruits and veggies daily? Choose just a few things so you can stick with it!

What goals are you striving to achieve that need a tweaking? Anything you’ve been working on that’s taking longer than expected? That could mean you just need to slightly tweak your plan to make it more actionable, less daunting and more easily accessible. What could that be?  What projects around the house didn’t get checked off during Spring Cleaning? Is the closet still overflowing and the basement a mess? What project can you tackle that you’ve been putting off?

Aside from the beautiful colors, delicious seasonal foods and crisp air that autumn brings, it brings a new chance for achieving your goals by the end of the year as well. Don’t feel guilty if your new year resolutions fell to the side — pick them back up and reach your goals.

So, what will it be for you?  I’ll be training for a half marathon at Lighthouse Loop on October 29 and a full marathon at Tomoka in March of 2018.  I’m also working on decluttering my home and a few other health coaching programs.

Just Completed: Mastering Thyroid Imbalances for Health Coaches

 

I thoroughly enjoyed the Mastering Thyroid Imbalance for Health Coaches course! It has helped me so much personally because I have Hashimotos and hypothyroidism.  Awesome ideas and so much valuable information!!!  I can’t wait to share all that I’ve learned with you!!!

 

 

Over ¾ of medical visits are related to this

The Global Stress Summit is FREE and online April 24 - May 1

Not everyone experiences stress the same, but everyone does feel the pressure that comes from not having enough time, energy or resources to get everything done. Yet, no one talks about it for fear of appearing disorganized or weak–but, there’s hope!

During The Global Stress Summit, researchers and thought leaders will teach you about the “new” science of stress, which shows that you can be in control of your experience! Don’t miss this event from April 24 – May 1, 2017, free and online!

Stress can impact you in many different ways, making it critical to carefully navigate this potentially damaging ailment. The Global Stress Summit is here to help!

Register for FREE

The Global Stress Summit will teach you to:
– Recognize stress-related signs, symptoms and conditions
– Understand historical and present-day stress/resilience research
– Learn how stress can be harmful (or helpful!)
– Practice important stress-management skills during each talk
– G2ain simple, practical tools to build a more resilient brain and body
– Acquire the super-skill of using stress to optimize health and performance

The Global Stress Summit is online and free from April 24 – May 1, 2017!

You can also own all of the expert talks to watch at your own pace.  This is an awesome option.  You will be able to download them and listen on the go.  I’ve already ordered mine 🙂

I’ll see you online at this educational summit!

P.S. It’s true, every purchase made helps us continue to reach people struggling to live healthier lives. I thank you in advance for your support.

I am a proud affiliate of the Global Stress Summit and if you sign up with my link, I may receive compensation.

Why Self-Care is Important

Tips to implement self-care into your day to day life

self-careDo you ever forget about self-care?  Taking care of yourself is one of the most important things and is essential for a healthy mind, body and soul.  Self care is never selfish and not only important when you are stressed, it should always be on top of your to do list.

Below I will share with you more information about self care and how to implement it into your daily life.  Don´t wait any longer and make your own well being a priority!

self-care1What does Self Care look like?

When it comes to self care it is all about bio individuality – like with your diet.  There is no one-fits-all guide to self care. Only you know what is good for you and what gives you energy and joy.  If you don´t know where to start then just sit down for a couple of minutes and think about things that make you happy.  Things that let you forget about your work, your to-do list and other tasks you have to do.  Sit quietly and connect to yourself to find out what makes you smile, gives you goose bumps or a feeling of peace and calmness.

What ever it is, it should be part of your self care routine.

self-care-mindSelf Care Ideas for the Mind

If you feel stressed, anxious, overworked or unhappy it is even more important to give your mind some extra space and calmness.  If it is difficult for you to quiet your mind and stay in the present try out one of these ideas:

• Sit outside and watch the clouds for 5 minutes
• Listen to your favorite song
• Meditate
• Read a book or magazine
• Unplug for an hour – flight mode on all devices
• Focus on your breathing – take a few deep breathes and exhale out what doesn’t serve you

self-care-body1Self Care for your Body

Whatever is making you happy and you enjoy doing has a positive effect on your body.  Give your body some extra self care every single day.  Only a few minutes daily can make a big difference, such as:

• Get 15 minutes of sun
• Move and feel your body – run, walk, dance
• Have a short nap
• Stretch and release tension
• Eat a healthy nourishing meal


Self Care for the Soul

Nourishing your soul with something that makes you happy and gives you a break from your busy life is more important than anything else.  Self care isn’t something you do once and tick off the list.  Implement self care habits for your soul everyday.self-care-soul

  • Pray or read the Bible
  • Enjoy your coffee/tea in the morning
  • Take a hot bath after work
  • Meet with your best friend
  • Have a good laugh
  • Watch your favorite movie
  • Help someone else

What do you do as part of your self-care routine?  Share in the comments below or email me.  Do you need more tips and ideas?  You may also want to check out my free e-book 3 Days of Self-Care.

 

 

Manifest Your Life

What you think you become

manifest thoughtManifestation is a powerful tool.  What you think, you become.  Your experience of life is shaped by how you perceive it.  We are manifesting things all the time unconsciously.  Every thought you are thinking forms your reality and your energy.  If you want to create a life of abundance and positivity you have to be present and mindful about what you are thinking and what you are wishing for.  Use the power of your own thoughts to attract positivity and happiness in your life!

specific“Watch your thoughts for they become words.  Watch your words for they become actions. Watch your actions for they become habits.  Watch your habits for they become your character.  Watch your character for it becomes your destiny.”   – author unknown, attributed to many sources

Write down your goals, your visions or your wishes.  You can create a vision board or write them into your journal.  By doing so you are forming your thoughts into something “real”, into something you can actually see.  Create a list of all the things you desire and get clear about them.   Where do you see yourself in a year, 5 years, or a decade?

wordsWords are powerful.  If you change the words you are using, you can change the situation you are in and also your own feelings.  Most of the time we don´t even realize how much we are using negative words.  If you are in a difficult situation try to use positive words instead of making the situation worse with negative words and thoughts.  Try to avoid words like “I can´t” or “I am not good enough”.  Use positive words for EVERYTHING and soon you will realize how your life changes to the better when you focus on the positive.  What words do you need to remove from your vocabulary?  What words can you replace them with?

present

You can´t manifest something for your future because the only the present moment is real.  If you say “I want to be happy” it will always be in the future and not in the now, therefore you are not manifesting happiness in your life.  Change your thoughts and say “I am happy right now” to create happiness in the present moment, the only moment where you can actually feel happy.  I like to repeat affirmations throughout the day – Louise Hay has many great ones!

grateful

If you are thankful for what you already have and not worried about what you don´t have or someone else has you are automatically focusing on the good things in your life.  Doing so you are attracting more positivity because you are focusing on things that make you happy and therefore sending out positive energy.  Gratitude changes everything.  Try to think of 3 things you are grateful for every morning before you get up to attract more abundance in your life.  I also write 3 things in my gratitude journal every evening.

What will you start doing today to manifest you life?

 

How to stay on track this holiday season

5 tips to help you get through the holiday season without packing on the pounds

As this holiday season approaches, many of us are preparing for big celebrations and parties.  Food, snacks, wine, beer, beverages… there is no other time of the year that people like to fill themselves up till their hearts content (or stomach is bursting!)

If you want to maintain your waistline this holiday season or even lose weight while people around you are packing on the holiday pounds, then this is for you!

Below are 5 tips for staying on track this holiday season:

stay on track sneakersEat Snacks Moderately – Let’s face it, snacks are abundant during the holidays seasons (as if they aren’t already throughout the year).  If you take a seat within an arm’s reach of the snack table, you’re going to have a tough time keeping yourself from unconsciously grabbing handfuls of party mix, candies, and the like and picking at them all day.  By sitting on the other side of the room, getting to the snacks involves a conscious effort into getting up and walking over to get at the snacks.

Exercise, Exercise, Exercise! – If the weather permits it, go out and take a quick walk around the house or block.  If your celebration is taking place in a colder climate, you’ll be more inspired to quicken your pace and burn a few extra calories in the process.  If the weather is bad, do 10-20 squats, stretches, or other brief exercise each time you go to the restroom.  You only want to do just enough to elevate your heart rate, but not break out into a sweat.  Chances are, no one will know what you’re doing, and you won’t have to feel self-conscious about trying to maintain your figure.

stay-on-track-waterEat More Raw Foods – Take an extra scoop of vegetables and fruit when filling your plate, and by the time you finish, you won’t have room for the other foods which are higher in calories and more likely to cause you to gain weight. Also, avoid fatty and fried foods (they taste good, but you know they aren’t good for you!)

Drink A Lot Of Water Throughout The Day – Water helps your body stay hydrated and healthy.  Drink a glass or two of water around 20 minutes before each meal, as well as during and between them.  The liquid in your stomach will help trick your mind into not feeling as hungry, which reduces the tendency to gorge yourself on potentially fattening foods.  Water also aids in the digestion process allowing your body more time to actually absorb the goodness in the food you consume.

stay-on-track-fruitEat In Smaller Portions – Instead of eating platefuls of food, try eating smaller portions throughout the day.  No doubt, everything at the table looks good, and it’s all you can do to keep from filling your plate 2-3 times so that you can sample everything.  An easy way to combat this urge is to simply take a smaller portion than you normally would of those dishes you’re most interested in, especially belt-bursting desserts.  Split a piece of pie or cake with your spouse, child, or another family member so you aren’t eating a full portion.

Do you have any tips you’d like to share?  Comment below or email me.  Let’s make this holiday season happy and healthy!

5 Habits that are Part of a Healthy Morning Routine

How you start your day plays a huge role in how the rest of your day will unfold.  A healthy morning routine can totally transform your life to the better.  With this easy to implement but powerful morning routine you´ll feel more energized, less stressed and more  grounded.  Below I will be guiding you into 5 healthier habits for your morning routine.  Try to get up 30 minutes earlier (although it might be hard in the beginning) and make room for these 5 steps that soon will become healthy habits of your life.

Breathebreathe

Before you jump out of bed stay a couple of minutes longer, put your right hand on your belly, your left hand on your chest and take 10-15 deep breaths.  Focus only on your breath without thinking about anything else.  Doing this simple breathing exercise before you start your day will enable you to start your day without stress and to feel connected and grounded.

hydrateHydrate!

After your breathing exercise it’s time to drink a big glass of warm water (preferably after brushing your teeth).  Your body is dehydrated after sleeping and so drinking warm water helps to jumpstart your metabolism after your rest.  Add fresh pressed lemon juice to your water to detoxify and alkalize your body.

mindfulnessMindfulness

After breathing and drinking a big glass of warm water try to start every morning with a mindfulness practice.  Sit down comfortably and meditate, write into your journal or make a list with 5 things you are grateful for in your life.  If one of the first things you are doing after getting up is meditating, being grateful and focusing on the good things in your life you will soon notice that you become happier and less anxious or worried.

stretchStretch it out

After doing your breathing exercise, drinking your warm water and practicing 5-15 minutes of mindfulness it’s time to stretch it out.  Don´t worry!  You don´t have to run a marathon or do one hour of power yoga in the morning.  When we sleep, our muscles are inactive for many hours and the blood flow decreases, that´s why some light movements in the morning help you to wake up your muscles and prepare your body for the day ahead.  Simply bend and stretch or do some light yoga for 3 minutes minimum to get the blood pumping after your rest.  The most important thing though is that you listen to your body.  Find out what movements feel good for you and don´t overdo it.

breakfastEnjoy a nourishing breakfast

Breakfast is a must if you want to create a healthy morning routine.  Your body needs energy for the day ahead so it is a necessity that you nourish your body with nutritious foods.  Be sure to include healthy fats, high quality protein and complex carbohydrates to feel energized and happy as well as preventing cravings later in the day.  Try to start your day with eggs, avocado, wholegrain toast, porridge or muesli.  Always add fresh fruits, vegetables or greens for an extra vitamin boost.

Will you commit to making these part of your morning routine?  Are you ready to be more energized, less stressed, and more  grounded?  Pick a day and start.  You can do it!

Why I Participated in the Facebook Love Your Spouse Challenge

Bailey with a toy

I was challenged by a coworker to participate in the 5 Day Love Your Spouse Challenge on Facebook where I was asked to post a picture of me with hubby and tag 2 friends to do the same each day.   I thought it would be fun to post some pics of me with my husband of 27 years  so I decided to do it (I did not tag others).

I normally don’t post much on my personal Facebook page – workout pictures, fitness articles, recipes, and pics of my cute Boxers.  I spend more time in Facebook groups and posting on my health & wellness Facebook page.

I shared pictures of me and my hubby each morning for 5 days.

A reminder of our trip to Hawaii years ago 🌴

Hawaii

Hawaii

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A family photo of Bailey graduating from a puppy training class

Bailey's Graduation

Bailey’s Graduation

Another family photo – this one taken at a Jacksonville Jaguar football game

Monday Night Jaguars Football Game

A picture of hubby and I in our caps and gowns graduating with our Masters degrees and walking in the same ceremony

Graduation

And lastly a picture from our trip to Europe celebrating our 25th anniversary

Italy

It was fun to go through pictures and remember some of the fun times in our marriage.  The pictures made me laugh and smile.  I also hope that it offered some of my friends hope.  It isn’t easy being married.  It really is a lot of work.  We were young when we got married.  We’ve had many good times over the years but we’ve had some real struggles too.  Financial trouble, health issues, demanding work schedules, and lots of responsibilities are just a few things I can think of off the top of my head.  We didn’t give up.  We worked through problem after problem.  There were some really hard times and I’m sure we’ll go through more in the future.

Some people are against the Love Your Spouse Challenge.  They think it is a bad idea to post pictures with your spouse celebrating good times because there are lots of difficult times in marriage and if you only post positivity you’re not sharing truthfully.  I disagree.  I focus on the good because that is who I am and what I have been called to do.  I look for the good in every situation.  Sometimes it isn’t easy.  I have saved the Bible verse Philippians 4:8 on my iPhone and iPad to help me remember.  I also know that there is too much negativity and drama on Facebook.  I can add some joy by sharing some photos of happy times.  Those pictures were of real memories.  They weren’t Photoshopped or dressed up.  They were pictures from our real lives.

I participated in the Love Your Spouse Challenge on Facebook because I love my husband.  That’s the reason.  There was no hidden agenda.   I took a vow 27 years ago to love my husband.  I promised to love, honor, and cherish him in sickness and in health, in good times and bad, for richer or poorer.   Yes there are times that he drives me crazy.  Yes he makes me mad.  But he is there for me when I need someone to talk to.  I trust him.  He understands me.  He cooks for me 🙂   He makes me laugh.    I love him.

 I encourage those of you that are married to remember your vows.  It won’t be easy at times but nothing worth having is.  The challenges you face can make your marriage stronger, please trust me on that.  Remember the good times because difficult times will come.

Let’s spread more love ❤️

Wishing you all love and happiness,

Kim

Becoming Healthy

A Lifelong Journey

beforeWhen I think about what it means to be healthy I think of so many different things, mental health, emotional health, physical health, spiritual health.  All of these areas are important but I have found when working on one area others seem to improve.  An example that comes to mind is when I started following the Daniel Plan in January of 2014.  When I started the study I wanted to improve my spiritual health and faith.  In doing so my physical, mental, and emotional health also improved.  Over the past few years I have made a lot of improvements to my habits that have helped me get healthier but the journey is not over.  I will also strive to be healthier in one area or another.  I want to keep growing.

How do you want to improve-We all start in a different place.  Some may do well with exercising but need help improving their food choices.  Others are emotionally strong and lacking physical health.  We need to think about where we are now and where we would like to be in the future.  How do you want to improve?  What steps can you take to start working towards your goals?

I also want you to think about the areas that you are strong in.  I am very runconsistent when exercise and being active but that wasn’t always the case.  Just a few years ago I could barely run at all and I actually stopped training for a 5k after the first workout due to having an asthma attack.  Now I normally run 3 days a week and have completed a half marathon.  I have not had to use my asthma inhaler before,  during, or after running.  It is truly amazing what can be accomplished when you are determined and ask for God’s help.  What areas are you seeing improvement in?  How did the change start and what kept you moving in the right direction?

10 steps infographicTo help people on their journey to better health I created a FREE guide:  10 Steps to a Leaner, Healthier You.  There may be items that you are already doing pretty regularly and some you should add to your routine.  The guide gives you small action steps.  Make a change or two and then when you are ready add more changes.  Slow steady progress leads to lasting change.

6 Weeks to a More Amazing youI also created a FREE 6 week email program:  6 Weeks to a More Amazing You.  You will receive 1 email each week with 1 simple but very effective way to feel better, look better, and have more energy.  Sign up Today!

My hope is that these free tools can help you on your journey to better health.  Some of the steps might be easy for you to implement and some may take more time and be more challenging.  I would love to hear from you so you can let me know what changes you made and how they impacted your life.

Reading books with a spiritual focus has helped me grow and consider ideas and concepts I hadn’t thought of.  I am also listening to podcasts again and love Matt Ham’s podcast Whole Life Matters.  It is short, only about 15 minutes per episode, and is great when I am taking a quick walk in the afternoon.  I also listen to Daily Hope with Rick Warren, Saddleback Church:  Drivetime Devotions, and Small Biz Life.  What are some of your favorite podcasts?  I would love to check them out!

As some of you know, I lead many online Bible studies.  The largest study I currently lead is The Daniel Plan  which is a 6 week study that discusses the 5 essentials of faith, food, fitness, focus, and friends.  I also lead the follow up study called The Daniel Plan 5 Essentials Series.  It is a 20 week study that goes into more detail for each of the essentials of the Daniel Plan.  In the past I have help studies on Breathe by Priscilla Shirer &  Made to Crave by Lysa TerKeurst.  I have plans to lead a few more later this year.  Spiritual health is so important.  I love being able to lead and participate in studies and help people grow spiritually.  Sign up for my monthly newsletter and I’ll keep you updated about studies that I will be leading in the future.

Healthy Habits Challenge 1On August 1st I’ll be holding a FREE 7 Day Healthy Habits Challenge. It will help you kick-start your weight loss goals and feel your best.  There’s no time-consuming research, complex workouts and recipes, or overly restrictive dieting. During these 7 days, you get the chance to take a breath and simply focus on YOU as I show you real-life, practical habits you can incorporate into your day quickly and easily to start making progress towards your goals.

As soon as you sign up, you’ll get access to our private Facebook group. Once the challenge starts on August 1st, I’ll be sending you 1 email per day that details the each of the 7 healthy habits that are going to transform your life for good.

You’ll have my support and guidance every step of the way… PLUS you can even invite your friends and co-workers to join us for even more fun and support!

I want to help you on your journey towards better health.  How can I help you?