Health, and fitness blog

The power of feeling bad

Inside of all of us is a guidance system as old life. It is beyond your sense of sight, smell, taste, touch, and hearing. It is your ability to feel. It can be your greatest enemy or ally. Emotions play an intimate role with your physiology. They have a two way relationship with hormones, muscles, organs, and thoughts. Feeling good leads to better recovery, being able to thrive under stress, and is very attractive to other people. Most people know that fear response is what causes a lot of the disease and poor decision making that goes on today. Some say that it is an almost antiquated system and now causes more harm than good. In my experience it has a much larger place than simply coming to your aid when faced with a lion. So how do these negative emotions figure into where you are today?

Look at the media or most of your work environments and it is very easy to feel trapped, and helpless. People that don’t feel like they are enough and/or scared are ones that buy more and give up their power more easily. Which is exactly why an environment of I’m not enough, or I’m afraid is seen as beneficial to most corporations and governments. It’s easy to accept the status quo when logically it looks like you have no choice.  Our brain can interpret feeling bad into just an emotion, or negate the blame onto something else. We can try to kill these feelings with food, drugs, apathy or what have you. This works for brief periods of time as your body becomes numb to adapt and maintain homeostasis. However, a fresh new pain will be there to motivate you to face your feelings.

So remind me again how awesome it is to feel bad? You bet! Those bad feelings are really your inner guidance system telling you not to accept the nonsense that you choose to believe, and do. There is nothing wrong with wanting a beautiful car or brand new dress until you believe that your identity depends on it. Just like it isn’t bad to be hard working and follow leaders until you allow yourself to be taken advantage of. Then it is your emotions job to step in and remind you that you are not here to be a good looking robot. Don’t get me wrong, letting your emotions control you is just as bad and also causes problems. Just like everything else they require balance.

Both logic and emotions are there to help guide you. The difference is that using logic is much cleaner, and doesn’t make you want to punch anybody in the face. Feelings are way more abstract and one thing attached to an emotion can bring a whole flood of unrelated memories together. Using logic to try and sort your emotions out can be even more dangerous. This can lead you to reinforce the behavior, or belief that caused the emotion in the first place. Or even worse, lead you to disregard your emotions. Also throw into the mix that your organs and body in general can store emotions or create them as a way to ask for help or be helpful.

So now that I’ve made things even more confusing hopefully I can be of some help. You need to be a human being.  Not a human thinking or human doing. This is why people that are considered enlightened like the Buddha or Jesus Christ spent so much of their time Meditating, praying, and just listening. This provided them with great insight and ability that is not available to the average person. So my suggestion to you is to sit, stand, lie down, or whatever by yourself maybe with some music without words and get acquainted with the bad ass that you are. Harvard Medical School Professor Ronald D. Siegel suggest around 45 minutes a day as that is the amount of time it usually takes to notice immediate effects. He also does an awesome course through The Great Courses called The Science and Mindfulness: A Research-Based Path to Well-Being.  My advice is meditate for whatever time you will do it consistently (if you are just starting 45 minutes can feel like eternity). Even if that time is only five minutes a day or taking some deep mindful breaths. This will help you simply allow your emotions, and thoughts some space without interfering or associating yourself as them. Your emotions will tell you what you need if you are brave enough to listen.

The second bit of advice I have. Create space for your feelings, but don’t give into them. This way you can acknowledge and accept what you are feeling but not give into it and still be the master of your domain. Both of these parts are very important. If you simply try to ignore your feelings and create what you want, they will be right there to give you an emotional bloody nose. If you only make space for the bad feelings, this is exactly how you will feel. By using both techniques you are actually honoring the bad feeling emotions by allowing them to tell you that you need to do something different, and then creating what that different thing is.

So next time you feel afraid, sad, or angry, think to yourself. Thank you for reminding me to live up to my full potential. Whether that is refusing to take someone’s crap, stop giving others so much crap, both of those things too yourself or anything else life may throw at you. Much love everybody.

 

Meal Planning

I LOVE to cook. I am not the best at it, but I have definitely earned my place in the kitchen. Through trial and error which still goes on to this day. I like to read recipes but don’t usually follow them fully which has led to some interesting situations, and a lot of trouble for myself and any woman or roommate that has been in my life (thank you all for putting up with me). I have learned a few tips that may just help you out with your busy life trying to get and stay healthy.

  1. Cook once for several meals.

This has helped me stay on track immensely! I know that not everyone is a fan of eating the same thing for a couple meals like I am. This still can work in your favor though if you cook the meats or veggies all at once and then turn it into several different meals. Like roast and sweet potato for breakfast (I know, I’m a rebel), a roast sandwich on some nice whole grain or cauliflower bread (just look up cauliflower sandwich bread) for lunch, and then for supper cook some greens and then mix then in with raw ones as a bed for the roast. You get the idea.

  1. Keep snack food ready

Nothing is going to crash your diet faster and make you feel like giving up then suddenly feeling hungry and giving into some junk or fast food craving. Keep some nuts that you have soaked in the fridge (they don’t last long so be sparing). Keep veggies and fruit (for sweet cravings) that you know you will love to eat when hungry. Dehydrated meat and high quality sliced meat is also great to have and eat with some veggies for a great balanced snack (you can even use your own oven to make jerky).

  1. Package foods for individual meals

I use glass jars to put food that I’ve prepared into for work, and travel. I also recommend stainless steel. I don’t suggest plastic because it leaks into your food, especially when heated in the plastic container. I also don’t suggest using microwaves to heat the food up. I also know that I have a much easier time eating cold food then most others, and you only have so many options at work so the only thing anyone can expect is do the best you can.

  1. Cook what you will love to eat, and keep it simple!

A lot of people fail diets because they go way too far past their comfort zone and aren’t ready to really eat what they think they should be. Remember that there is always a step up, and that it is the combined steps that lead to real progress. Be compassionate with yourself and realistic about where you are at. Remember I’m rooting for you!

 

Some cook books I recommend are Rocket fuel on a budget by Joanna Rushton for beginners, and the Whole Life Nutrition Cookbook by Alissa Segersten and Tom Malterre which is extremely comprehensive and even goes over pros and cons of specific diets.

Lucid Dreaming

Have you ever wanted to fly, breathe underwater, or turn into an animal? I know I have, and I’ve even experienced it. That’s impossible, right? Nothing is impossible in our dreams. Dreams can be a lot of fun, and they can also be great tools into self development. Today I will be talking specifically about lucid dreaming and ways to use it for self development. I’m sure you already have a list of fun adventures you want to go on so I will leave the having fun part to you.

To talk about Lucid dreaming I must first talk about dreams. When you go to sleep you go through cycles. One of those stages in a cycle is called R.E.M. or rapid eye movement. This is when most dreaming occurs. Dreaming is a way for you to integrate things that happened during the day into your unconscious mind. It is also a way for your unconscious mind to communicate to the conscious one about unresolved issues, and warnings for the future. This should be enough for the frame work I will need for my topic, if you are interested in diving further into it, let me know and I will do another blog on it.

Lucid dreaming is being conscious, and in control of your dreams. This is not a normal state of consciousness and wasn’t even believed to be real by scientific communities for a long time. It is something that some fortunate people are gifted with regular occurrences, some people achieve it with practice, and some people have rare occurrences of this or never in their lifetime. Being conscious of dreams is well known and occurs with much more regularity. Lucid dreaming is rarer because in order to control and be conscious in a dream requires a very relaxed mind.

Before I dive into techniques I need to state that the basis for going into work this deep usually requires getting healthy first. As stated above you need to be relaxed for this work which is almost impossible, or at least requires intense training to achieve. If your body perceives it is under threat it is not going to want to lend you resources to go deeper if you haven’t done the more immediate work. Listen to your body and work on where you are at. Lucid dreaming will be there later, and will be more enjoyable when you are healthy.

There are several techniques and even gadgets that people use to lucid dream. I will not cover them in detail here because other resources are going to be better, and there are tons of approaches that you will have to look at and try to find one that is right for you. Some popular ones are WILD or wake induced lucid dreaming, creating a habit that you do on a regular basis to see if you are dreaming, and waking up then immediately going back to sleep. I have had the most success with the last one. I would like to caution you that learning to lucid dream can interrupt your sleep so be careful.

Once awake inside of your dream just go with the flow, I would recommend doing this for about a week. This will make it easier to relax and know what going with the flow feels like. This is important because once you leave flow you leave the dream. The next step is to try and change small things, and work your way to bigger ones. Keeping a dream journal will help you remember your dreams and go deeper into them. Keep it next to where you sleep so that you can record them upon waking when dreams will be the most memorable.

Besides the obvious benefit of how fun this can be, lucid dreaming gives you a doorway into your unconscious, and in my belief system other realms. This is very therapeutic because it gives you a chance to talk to your environment, change events, and become the creator of your world. The objects and people in your dreams are there because you allow them or chose them to be there. Talking to, and asking questions with these objects or people can give you great insight into your mind. You can even choose to have guides in your dreams that that will work in the same way that I would in coaching you. There is no greater teacher for yourself than you. You can also practice and explore abilities in your dreams. The carry over isn’t great because your dream self is much more capable, but this does make the exploration safer and can provide great insight in how to proceed.

Lucid dreaming isn’t for everyone. If this doesn’t sound like your cup of tea, but the self development aspects sound like something you are interested in check out shamanic journeying. This is basically a meditation involving your imagination where you also speak to your unconscious mind, and if you believe as I do travel to other realms.

 

 

Sleep

Sleep is our chief anabolic resource. To say it differently, it is the thing that brings in the most energy and recharges us. We as humans are designed to sleep during the night, and get the most out of our sleep by going to bed at 10 p.m. and rising at 6 a.m. Just like with all rules there are exceptions. Head trauma and illness are good examples of this. In these cases more sleep is a good thing. For most people it is not due to inactivity that results in poor circulation, fluid stagnation, and not to mention parasites and fungus usually come out and play while you are sleeping.

Circadian rhythm is our body’s energetic relationship with the large bodies of energy such as the sun and the moon that nurture us and our own internal systems such as the liver, and spleen. How this relates to sleep is certain parts of our body are designed to be active during the day while awake and the others at night while sleeping. It also means that our bodies are designed to be asleep when there is no sunlight outside. Our bodies are very sensitive to the subtle energies of the large bodies in the solar system specifically those close to us such as the moon.  This is evidenced in other life forms like mushrooms or flowers that blossom only when the full moon is out. Failing to follow natural circadian rhythm means, losing out on the energy boost gifted to us by these large bodies. It also means operating against the internal flow of our organs. I am not saying that nobody should ever stay up late, or that no one should work the grave yard shift. I would advise for those that are working grave yard shift that you should rotate out of that shift every 30 days. Failing to do so will more than likely result in more money spent on doctor bills from poor health than you would have gotten in pay compensation. At least try and make sure that you take naps, and switch back sleep times on days off to make up for some of the poor sleep quality. Ten to twenty minutes for a nap is optimal because you don’t go into a sleep cycle. It’s also a great for those that don’t meditate.

In my observation, few people know about proper bed times, and circadian rhythm. Even less know about proper sleep hygiene. To maximize sleep quality, it is important. Make sure your room is as dark as you can get it. Night lights, light from windows, cell phones or anything else should be avoided, light triggers the body to wake up and will prevent healthy sleep. Blackout curtains are very inexpensive and will greatly increase your sleep quality. Cell phones, tablets and wireless internet should be turned off before bed. This is a relatively new one, but a quick Google search should give all the research you need if you don’t want just to take me for my word. By the way, I hope you do not. Avoid electronic devices, specifically blue light devices such as television 2 hours before bed.  The blue light is very stimulating and takes time to wind down from. Most cell phones have apps that filter the light to different colors. Search for eye care apps. These should still be avoided before bed which brings me to my final tip for now. Gradually dim the all light. If you need to, buy a lamp for the bedroom. Candles, or the fireplace are preferable, because natural light is easier on the eyes.

Failing to observe good sleep times and hygiene can result in, or be the result of stress. Anything from moodiness, poor eating habits, illness, you name it. I could go on and on listing scary consequences of poor sleep habits but I will leave it at that for now. If you are having trouble sleeping or feeling rested when you wake up, and you have already employed or need help employing the information I have given you please seek out the help of myself or another CHEK Practitioner/ HLC.

 

 

addiction

 

Addiction is something that most people struggle with whether they are aware of it or not. When I hear people talk about addiction it usually has to do with Drugs, alcohol, or smoking. However in my definition an addiction is anything that is dream or possibly life negating that you have given away your power to choose other behaviors. Yes this does mean substance abuse and includes food, but is also means any behavior that provides you with positive reinforcement such as attention, comfort, a break from reality, pleasure, etc. that ultimately is destructive. This is different from abusing behavior because even though it can be just as destructive, the person that is abusing still holds power over the choice. It can be almost impossible to distinguish between the two because there are a lot of shades of grey in between. An example would be the difference between someone who switches from coffee to an herbal tea or quits all together with no problem vs. when I quit smoking, and at first didn’t have the will to do so.

So now that we have defined addiction let’s take a look at what causes it. When people choose behaviors that they know aren’t healthy or dream affirmative it is usually from stress. The stress can be from work, family, beliefs, you name it. People then turn to a behavior to try and escape, or comfort themselves. This works well at first, until your body and mind adjusts and you need more of the behavior to achieve the original result. Your body and Psychology start to adapt to the behavior, and then require the behavior to maintain homeostasis, or normal. This creates what is called a shadow. A behavior driven by an unconscious reason built to protect yourself until you are ready to uncover it, and build a healthier dream affirmative behavior.  These shadow behaviors usually have their own protective mechanisms built in. Such as denial, defensiveness, avoidance, etc.

Addictions aren’t easy to overcome. They are not however impossible. What exactly should be done usually depends on the individual, and needs to be adjusted during the process in order to achieve success. All processes though usually involve some way to bridge where you are to where you want to be. This includes gradually weaning off, trading habits, changing environments, and making other changes to life such as adding nutrition and reflection that will make the transition easier.

Addictions of all kind are very serious and the process of breaking them is greatly aided with support, and love. Self love being the most important as the choice is always yours. If you don’t change who you are before, during and after the transition the shadow will remain and you will soon be abusing, then addicted to another type of behavior. Great resources to overcome addiction are CHEK HLC level 2 or 3, and Paul Chek’s 1-2-3-4 of overcoming addiction Obesity and disease.

Stress Tips

Stress is something that all of us has to deal with, and can even benefit is. This is called eustress and is important for growth, and to ensure that our body does not shut down critical systems such as temperature regulation. The negative side of stress is what most of us think about because we get way to much of it. Stress buys cool cars for a lot of doctors, keeps the weight loss industry profitable, and is the main reason why I get to be am a Holistic Lifestyle and Fitness Coach.

I will not be covering all aspects of what causes stress. The tips I will give you to help combat negative stress are monitor your Quality, Quantity, and Timing of your external and internal environment. This will hopefully give you the biggest bang for your buck. To break this down into real life application I will be going over sleep, and thoughts

Food is a blessing that required the sacrifice of a life. Eating with respect and gratitude is important.  Anything you put into your mouth your body has to cleaned, breakdown, and then integrate or eliminate from your body. This takes energy and resources, such as enzymes, vitamins, minerals, acids, alkaloids, and hormones. If the food you eat is nutritionally deficient or even toxic your body must give resources it may not get back in order to try and utilize or eliminate what it has been given. Try and stay away from processed and inorganic foods. The more alive your food is, the more it has to give to you.

Overeating, and under eating are both issues I would like to address here, and one usually leads to the other. For women and to some degree men under eating equals weight gain. Your gender is beautifully designed by Mother Nature to hold on to nutrients in time of famine more so then men most likely because women carry and nurse children. This translates to weight gain. Not initially as you go into stage one adrenal fatigue, where the weight loss, muscle toning, and rosy cheeked complexion comes in. This tricks you into believing that you are on the right path, but it is your bodies’ way of dealing with what it believes is a war zone. The next stages of adrenal fatigue are where the weight gain occurs. The point for both men and women is under eating is a significant stressor on the body.

Overeating also causes weight gain, and hormonal stress on the body. This is because your body has to process all of that food it is not designed to handle. The body then uses the energy on processing and elimination instead of absorption of nutrients. Eventually the detoxification pathways get backed up and fat is used to store the extra toxins.

For optimal blood sugar, and hormonal response make sure that you eat at least every three to four hours. Snacks in between meals is fine and can be a good way to make sure that blood sugar doesn’t crash, and you don’t get to hungry before your next meal. Make sure what we have already talked about is kept in mind in regards to snacks.

Thoughts create words, which then create our actions. What most people aren’t aware of is that the vast majority of our thoughts our unconscious. Our unconscious mind is created by past thoughts and experiences that drone on in the background of our minds creating feelings and ideas that most of us are unaware of. According to research by Deepak Chopra around 90% of our conscious and unconscious thought is negative.  If you realize that anything you perceive real or imagined has the same response on your body it’s not hard to see that most people are killing themselves slowly with thought.

One way to start to change that unconscious tide of thoughts in your favor is positive mantras (phrases), or positive self talk. Pick an area of your life that you are having negative self talk and turn it around. For example you hate your job and catch yourself saying negative things about yourself, others or the environment while you are there. You can then create a phrase that you can tell yourself that will change your outlook. I love that I get paid every two weeks, I love helping customers, or I choose to make a difference are all good ones. I feel it is important to point out that you are not trying to discredit the negative thoughts you feel. This only leads to unresolved feelings that remain in your unconscious. It is important to create space and except the negative, but not let it control how you feel or what you choose what you do.

 

 

Sacred selfishness

Here’s a short video on sacred selfishness. This subject is pretty in depth, but I wanted to share three aspects to help you achieve your new year goals.

Limiting beliefs- such as believing you owe someone, and things will fall apart without you.

Giving to much- giving more than you have in the tank, or unhealthy giving.

Giving to yourself- giving “gifts” to yourself that will help you accomplish your goals, such as education.

Headache tips.

Headaches can be caused by many things. From spinal disc bulges, poor breathing habits, muscle knots, poor sleeping habits, stress, and much more. I have been experiencing headaches from detoxification lately so I thought I would share some healthy tips I’ve been using lately to help myself feel good and be productive. I go over some massage, essential oil, breathing, and movement points.