Thoughts from National Day of Unplugging

I hope that many of your enjoyed #nationaldayofunplugging. It was nice to take 24 hours to #unplug from my devices.  I was able to take some time to myself which is always needed. I read, ate good food, spent time with my family, went to Haute Sauna Studio, shopped, was able to breathe and think without any noise or distraction.

One of the things that I did during the day was to observe. I watched couples use their phones while they ate brunch, women taking pictures of their outfits at a clothing store and even observations of myself.  I remembered that sense of peace without my phone.  When you don’t have your phone you’re able to live in the moment and be present. It’s truly a beautiful gift.

Our brains were never meant to be processing so much shit at once.  There have been studies done that show our devices are causing us to stress, have sleep deprivation, be less productive, have anxiety, have depression and the list goes on an on.  But no one wants to do anything about it.  Because we’re addicted.  Think about it.  The first step to addiction is admitting you have a problem. And pretty much everyone would need to be going to a meeting over this addiction.  WE NEED OUR PHONES.  Right? I NEED TO BE ON MY PHONE FOR MY JOB.  FOR MY KID.  FOR MY LIFE.

I know that I have an uphill “battle” with helping people with my digital detox program because we’re all in denial.  I was in denial for a long time too.  It’s time we look at the portion control of our device time and find balance with it.

Everyday Life Coach Podcast – Episode 6 – Medicine Cabinet Makeover with Essential Oils

In this week’s podcast, I discuss how you can makeover your medicine cabinet with essential oils.

The essential oils that I recommend (you’ll have to listen to the podcast to get the deets) are all doTERRA.
  1. Digest Zen
  2. OnGuard
  3. Deep Blue
  4. Peppermint
  5. Breathe
  6. Lavender
  7. ClaryCalm®
  8. Serenity
 
I do want to say the following disclaimer:
The statements that I have made in my podcast have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.
If you’re interested in learning more about these oils please feel free to contact me. One of the things I am as a doTERRA wellness advocate and I enjoy helping people become healthier by using them.

Everyday Life Coach Podcast – Episode 5 – Savor the Shower

This week’s episode is how to savor the shower. Taking a shower is not self-care. I want to point this out ahead of time. Taking a shower is what everyone needs to do every day for their own personal hygiene. I’m just saying. HOWEVER what you do IN the shower could be a form of self-care. I want you to start SAVORING shower time. No eye rolls right now.

 

What I want you to try to incorporate into your shower is:

  1. Incorporate aromatherapy
  2. CalmMusic
  3. Head Massage – here is the one that I talk about on the podcast!
  4. Water Visualization
  5. Affirmation/Prayer/Gratitude
I hope this helps. I can’t wait to hear from you all once you try this. SAVOR YOUR SHOWER PEOPLE!  Get the full details of these things on the podcast!

Everyday Life Coach Podcast – Episode 4 – Digital Detox Tips

This week’s Everyday Life Coach Podcast is tips on how you can add elements of my digital detox to your everyday life.  One of the things that I suggest in my podcast is to turn off notifications. TURN THEM OFF.  Here are instructions on how to do it for Android or iPhone.  What you’re going to find is by turning them off you’re going to spend less time looking at your phone and that means more time to be present and focused on yourself and the people who are actually around you LIVE.  There are three other tips in the podcast. You’ll have to listen!

Everyday Life Coach Podcast – Episode 3 – Deep Breathing

This week on the Everyday Life Coach the topic is on deep breathing.  AHHHHHH.

Let me first tell you all the benefits there are with adding deep breathing to your everyday life.

  • Deep breathing calms the sympathetic nervous system which is activated in times of stress and anxiety.
  • Lifts mood
  • Raises levels of endorphins and lowers stress hormones
  • Boosts energy and stamina
  • Increases oxygen in your blood
  • Strengthens the immune system
  • Promotes better sleep
  • Reduction in blood pressure
  • Breathing normalizes the heart rate

Now, the next thing you should be saying is, where do I sign up?  Here are some great apps that I use to help me with my daily deep breathing.

Here and Now

Stop, Breathe and Think

If you do deep breathing for 20 to 30 minutes each day, it will reduce anxiety and reduce stress. Deep breathing increases the supply of oxygen to your brain and stimulates the parasympathetic nervous system, which promotes a state of calmness. Breathing techniques help you feel connected to your body—it brings your awareness away from the worries in your head and quiets your mind.

 

Everyday Life Coach Podcast – Episode 2 – Meditation

In this week’s Everyday LIfe Coach podcast, I discuss meditation.

Let me first tell you about some of the benefits that meditation can provide you:

  • Reduced pain
  • Boosts immune system
  • Lowers blood pressure
  • Cultivated willpower
  • Builds focus and concentration
  • Increases compassion
  • Improves empathy
  • Improves depression
  • Reduces loneliness
  • Cuts emotional reactivity
  • Eases stress and anxiety
  • Helps sleep

WOW! With all of those benefits, why aren’t we all meditating? I have apps to share with you that can cultivate a meditation practice.

H*nest Meditation App

Calm

Stop, Breathe and Think

How much meditation should you do?

There are studies showing 30 minutes per day for eight weeks can increase the density of gray matter in brain regions associated with memory, stress, and empathy. There are studies showing that only 20 minutes per day for four days improves cognitive skills and that only 20 minutes per day for three days results in a significant decrease in pain sensitivity.

The really good news is that this study found we just need to find just 10 minutes a day over 16 weeks for significant improvements in neural functioning associated with enhanced focused attention.

To listen to this podcast and others click here.

Everyday Life Coach Podcast

I’m happy to announce that I have created a new podcast, Everyday Life Coach.  I thought it would be interesting to have a weekly podcast that talks about different topics that help people with their overall wellness.  The podcasts are given in “snackable” bytes.  Many times I listen to podcasts and they’re so long that I have to take notes and try to remember where in the podcast they said something. Nobody has time for that!  I’m going to give you some great nuggets that you can do in your everyday life in less than 10 minutes. Then I’ll add a blog post so you can go back if you want to click on any of the items that I talk about in my podcast.  I hope that you listen, enjoy and subscribe.  You can find the podcast here.

Tips For Unplugging On Your Next Vacation

With Summer upon us I thought it would be good to write a post about unplugging. I know that so many of us are bound to our devices during the work week and even on the weekends. We’re checking emails, looking for answers on the web, updating our Facebook and Instagram pages. Constantly connected.  Trust me, you can’t keep it up. In fact your health is at risk if you do.  You need to make time to disconnect (plug: digital detox program) and there is no better moment then when you are on vacation.

Take a deep breathe, you can do this!  I know what you’re about to say….I use my phone as my camera.  I got you.  

Here are my tips for unplugging on vacation and reconnecting with loved ones and yourself.

  1. OOO – Out of office needs to be thought out in terms of copy and used.  When you are out of office that means not checking your email, not responding and certainly not accepting any meetings.  Outlook has alerts that if an email comes through with a subject or from a certain person it can be forwarded to someone else. Get that monkey off your back and plan ahead.  I would even recommend using OOO on your personal email if you’re active on there too.
  2. Airplane mode – Find this on your phone. This is going to be your best friend during vacation. You know why? You’re camera is still going to work but you won’t be able to RECEIVE or SEND anything through the internets.  That’s right, you’ll be able to still take those awesome shots of your family BUT you don’t have to share them until you get back from your trip of bliss.
  3. Schedule social media time – If you feel compelled to check your social media then find a short amount of time per day to do that. Maybe it’s when you come back from the beach OR after a long hike in the mountains. Set a timer and stick to it.  After that, back to airplane mode.
  4. Take emails accounts off your phone – I’ve done this.  You have the OOO all set up and now it’s time to believe that everything is going to be alright.  Breathe. Nothing is going to burn down and if it does, someone will text you or call.  This is HUGE deal and necessary in order for you to relax.
  5. No devices at meals – Vacation is the time to reconnect with your family and try new things.  You can’t appreciate either, if you’re head down in your phone.  It just doesn’t work that way.  If you have airplane mode on then you don’t need to be looking at your device anyway.  No one wants to see a picture of what you’ve eaten. 
  6. Delete apps from your phone – if you aren’t capable of full on airplane mode then my suggestion would be to delete the apps that you know are your go-to’s. Pinterest, Facebook, Snapchat, Games, etc.  Get them off your phone. When you come back home, add them back and everything will be like it was before.
  7. Turn off notifications – if you aren’t capable of full on airplane mode then my suggestion would be to turn off notifications on your phone.  You don’t need to worry about Groupon’s newest deals OR your Flipboard updates.

Vacation is about resetting.  Focus on yourself not work.  It will all still be there when you get back. You’re going to find that you have more time to meditate, read, have conversations, breathe and be present in your vacation with your loved ones. Let me know if you follow any of these tips on your next vacation.  I’m interested in hearing how you did.

#CALMDAY

Today is International Calm Day.  Yes, I know yet another silly holiday that someone created for no reason.  I want you to please embrace this one for me please.  We all could use some calm in our lives.

Let’s slow down, take a deep breath, and pause for a moment together. Now don’t you feel better?

“We all want the kind of mindset that allows us to be calm while driving to work in bumper-to-bumper traffic. Or the calm that helps us to stop ruminating about the past or worrying about the future so we can sleep well at night. For many of us, the stress and anxiety we experience seems to be greater than ever before. We rarely pull away from our digital devices and we end up feeling overwhelmed and overstimulated. We’re so focused on ‘the next thing’ that we regularly miss what’s happening in front of us. We fall into bed exhausted, waiting for weekends to come around, and when they do, we spend them worrying about what we didn’t achieve or thinking about what’s next on our plate…” – Excerpt from page one of the Calm book

AMEN.  Who doesn’t want this?  I created Digital Wellness BECAUSE of this.

Here are 5 quick tips to help you find a little peace today and in the future.

  1. Focus on your BREATHING. Take some deep breaths.  The Calm app will help and today to celebrate #calmday they are unlocking all of their premium content for 24 hours!
  2. MOVE.  Walk. Go up and down the stairs at work. Get some expertise in today.
  3. MEDITATE even if it’s a couple of minutes.  Here’s a video I like to use.
  4. Pull out the ESSENTIAL OILS. If you don’t have any, I recommend using doTERRA essential oils lavender, serenity or peace.
  5. SLOW DOWN.  There is no award for having a life full of extracurricular activities. Make time to just relax and be in the moment.

Creating a Routine

Routine provides a sense of structure and familiarity.  Structure is a way of organizing your life so that it makes sense to you.  You wake up with a sense of ownership, order, and organization of your life.

Need help with creating a daily routine for yourself?  Contact me to help!

Nurturing the most important relationship in your life

No, I’m not talking about your parents. I’m talking about the relationship you have with yourself. The most important and longest relationship we will have and yet the one we probably spend the least on is with ourselves. No more. If you lay a solid foundation with this relationship, it will carry on with the rest of the ones you have in your life.

The first thing I would tell you in this relationship it needs to have a level of RESPECT. Respect yourself, your feelings, your body, your mind, etc. Respect yourself enough to say no or to listen to that inner voice that gives you pause.

I think it’s important to have LOVE & COMPASSION for yourself. If you don’t have any for yourself than how can you have it for other people? Let go of being your worst critique and looking at your flaws instead have compassion for yourself that you’re doing the best you can. You are perfect being imperfect. Cut yourself some slack.

Just like in romantic relationships, HONESTY is key. You need to be able to look at yourself in the mirror and be 100% honest. You can’t bullshit yourself. It’s not going to work.

Another one that I think is important is TIME. Just like any relationship, you need to give yourself quality time.  This time can be used for self-care, for fun for whatever you want but you need time to yourself to be present in your life.

Never go to bed to bed angry. Always go to bed with a  CLEAR HEAD so that you can sleep better and not have the negative vibes looming over you the next day.

Five Websites That Inspire Me

The wild world of the internets has so many sites, blogs, accounts that you can “tap” into for motivation, encouragement and education. Here’s my go-to list of sites that provide me daily inspiration.

Wellness

mindbodygreen – I first found this website on Facebook. Their mission is to revitalize the way we eat, move, and live. And that’s exactly the type of content they provide. I will read articles when I’m taking a little mental break and always get new ideas to try.

Prevention Magazine – I don’t have a subscription to the magazine but I do follow them on Facebook and on Pinterest. Similar to mindbodygreen they provide tips on health, nutrition, beauty, mind-body, weight loss, and fitness. A great resource for healthy living.

Mindful.org – IS AMAZING! I feel like I’m always sharing their content on Facebook. Their content is about the art of mindfulness in your everyday life including at work.  It’s a must follow for sure.

Inspiration

Sweatpants & Coffee – My friends turned me onto this on Facebook. They inspire you through snarkiness (new word I made up) and I love that!  The Instagram account is on point and pretty much anything that has coffee as a main subject is awesome in my book.

Simple Reminders – Just like the name of this site, the book and social media accounts provide you daily reminders that will motivate you to be a positive and joyful.  You’ll want to share every Facebook & Instagram post with your friends. I have been following the site on Facebook for years.

I hope you enjoyed my list! I would love to hear what your go-to sites are too. Comment below and I’ll check them out.

Five People That Inspire Me

The wild world of the internets has so many sites, blogs, accounts that you can “tap” into for motivation, encouragement and education. Here’s my go-to list of people I admire.

Wellness

Kris Carr –  I want to be Kris when I grow up. She’s such an approachable wellness expert and gives you lots of recipes, tips and resources for a healthier life. I love her Instagram and Pinterest accounts!

Inspiration

Danielle LaPorte – Here’s another person I have followed FOREVER! Love her and the inspirational nuggets she provides each day. If you don’t know about #truthbombs then you are missing out. Read her books, follow her on every channel and learn more about yourself each day.

Hustle Heros

Lewis Howes – I learned about Lewis Howes around 2009 and have been hooked ever since. His hustle is full of passion and authenticity and through the years he has adapted with the use of social media. My current “addiction” is his talk show podcast, The School of Greatness.

Gary Vaynerchuk – This man inspires me every day. Every day. Especially Monday. I have seen him speak, read his books and follow all his social media. He was some great advice on content.  My favorite thing about Gary is he has a potty mouth. He keeps it REAL. 100% REAL.

Hayley Hobson  When I became part of the doTERRA family about a year ago as a wellness consultant I searched for people “like me” within the business. I wanted to find people who leveraged the digital space to grow their businesses. And the person who stood above all others was Hayley Hobson. WOW.  She has built her own personal brand, empowered others to replicate her model and educates the masses on the great value of using social media.  I am in awe of her hustle and hope one day to sit down and speak to her about her own path.

I hope you enjoyed my list! I would love to hear what your go-to peeps are too. Comment below and I’ll check them out.

 

Why Sleep Is So Important

Once of the things I talk about in my self-care webinars is sleep. Sleep is normally the first thing we “skimp” on when it comes to taking care of ourselves and probably one of the most important things we should prioritize.

Adults need about 7.5 to 9 hours of sleep per night – 20% overall should be deep sleep.

What happens when we deprive our bodies of sleep? The National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (NIH) states the following:

Sleep plays a vital role in good health and well-being throughout your life. Getting enough quality sleep at the right times can help protect your mental health, physical health, quality of life, and safety.
The way you feel while you’re awake depends in part on what happens while you’re sleeping. During sleep, your body is working to support healthy brain function and maintain your physical health. In children and teens, sleep also helps support growth and development.

If that didn’t scare you, here are serious health conditions that can occur from sleep deprivation:

  • Depression and anxiety
  • Obesity
  • Diabetes
  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Hypertension (high blood pressure)
  • Heart attacks
  • Immune system suppression & dysfunction
  • Digestive problems
  • Accidents (including deadly ones)
  • And more

YIKES.

One of the things that I recommend is creating a nighttime routine. This routine you can do when you’re at home, away on a business trip or on vacation. This alleviates any stress and allows your body to fall into a relaxed state almost every night. I apply Serenity doTERRA essential oil on the bottoms of my feet every night to help promote relaxation and a restful sleeping environment. I then use an app called Hear and Now which guides me in deep breathing exercises.  Deep breathing is known to help promote deep sleep.  I use melatonin if I need additional assistance with sleeping and put down my electronics at 9pm.  That’s it.  Facebook can wait until the next day. I lastly pray about the day and the things/people that I’m grateful for and the “worries” that I have on my mind.

Besides a routine another thing I recommend is looking at your bedroom and making sure it’s “optimized” for a good night sleep.  Here are some tips for a perfect sleep haven.

  • Make sure your sheets are kept clean. I use lavender essential oil (proven to lower your heart rate and blood pressure, potentially putting you in a more relaxed state) on my wool dryer balls to help infuse the scent.
  • Many sleep experts say that a cool room, somewhere around 65 degrees, makes for the best sleep.
  • Declutter and clean. When you walk into your bedroom you should feel peaceful and relaxed NOT anxious and worried.
  • Lighting is important. When it’s dark it tells our body it’s time to rest. So don’t use a bright light before you go to sleep or even keep lights on while you’re sleeping.
  • Turn the TV off at night.
  • Invest in a good mattress and pillows.
  • No electronics.

I am all about my sleep. When I focus on getting my zzzz’s , my outlook is brighter and I feel better.  I hope you will focus on this “easy” self-care practice starting tonight.

Gratitude Cycle

It seems every day you can find a “fun” holiday to celebrate.  Today is no different.  March 1st is World Compliment Day. It made me think about how compliments can be a way to show your gratitude towards someone else.  One compliment that probably only takes a second to give can provide a big difference in a person’s day.   I challenge you today to pay a compliment to someone it could be at the office, family members or friends.

I will be generous with my love today.

I will sprinkle compliments and uplifting words

everywhere I go.

I will do this knowing that my words are like seeds

and when they fall on fertile soil,

a reflection of those seeds

will grow into something greater.

Steve Maraboli 

(Life, the Truth, and Being Free)

What I find really cool about compliments is the gratitude cycle it creates. The person that is receiving the compliment from the other person practices gratitude too by them acknowledging your kindness in a gracious way.   What ends up happening between these two people are good feelings, happiness and optimism. And not only between the two people but hopefully it starts to spread among their tribe.

Look at compliments as gifts.  Gifts that you can give and ones that you can receive.  Freely and open.

Start the gratitude cycle today!

#Unplug this Weekend

Every Friday on Instagram I have an #unlplug post. It’s a quick reminder to everyone (and even myself) that it’s time to take a break from your device.

Here are some scary statistics:
A TIME mobility poll surveyed 5,000 people and found that 84% of participants couldn’t go a single day without their mobile device. One in four people check their phones every thirty minutes, while one in five check every ten. This is why I built my digital detox program. Houston, we have a serious problem here.

There are numerous studies that show unplugging relieves stress AND helps you sleep better. However, in today’s society there is a struggle with #FOMO (fear of missing out). We can go days without turning on our TV but not look at our phones for one whole day…crazy talk. Its time to TAKE TIME away from the texts, emails, notifications, likes, hashtags, updates, rants, etc.

Here are some things you could be doing instead of being on your device:

  • Connect with friends and family in person.
  • Connect with yourself.
  • Get outside and enjoying your surroundings.
  • Reclaim your time to do what you love to do.
  • Let your head be clear of the noise.
  • Read a book.
  • Breathe.

I challenge you to answer this question in the comments below. What would you do with #OneDayOffline?

If you want help with unplugging, please feel free to reach out to me!

#1 Self Care Tip

I’m going to let you in on a little secret. If someone asked me what my #1 self care tip is…it’s water.  I know that you want to roll your eyes at this post right now.  Maybe you’re even wondering if you still need my services but trust me that WATER is the answer to many issues that you are having.  Here me out.

I have gone to the hospital twice for dehydration.  TWICE. I forgot to drink water and after a week, I was like OMG all I have had is 2 cups of coffee each day.  I couldn’t think straight, I was weak and I overall felt like I was dying.

NOW. Water has become a ritual.  I have a water bottle that I use and I’m constantly drinking out of it.  I made a conscious effort to create a habit and it’s stuck.  I feel? GREAT.  My skin has never looked better. I’m sick less and can concentrate more. If you don’t believe me, check this infographic out on why it’s important to stay hydrated.

Here are some tips to drink more water each day:

  1. Add flavor to the water – my recommendation is doTERRA lemon essential oil.
  2. Use an app to track your intake.
  3. Buy a water bottle and keep it with you at all times as a reminder. There are even ones that are “fancy” bluetooth enabled OR a bottle that will track your intake on the side of it.
  4. Fill up an old water jug and drink the entire thing each day.
  5. Read this article from webMD.

The article in tip #5 is what made me drink more. More water = less stress. Is the stress going to “poof” go away? NO. But you will feel better and give your body less internal stress to deal with by hydrating it.  It’s a no brainer folks. Get on the water train today!

 

Living a Life of Gratitude

Living a life of gratitudeOne of the biggest and “no cost” self-care practices you can do is living a life of gratitude. When we take time out of our day (EACH DAY – multiple times a day) to think about what we’re grateful something happens to our psyche.  I’m not talking about the polite “thank you” which many of us had instilled in our upbringing.  I’m talking about focusing on the things, people, events, etc. that you are grateful for.  This focus can be either written down, thought of or told. I promise you if you develop a practice of gratitude, you will find more joy, happiness and hope in your life.  There has been scientific studies on this exact correlation.

Here are some ways you can start a routine:

  1. Morning ritual – Every morning when you wake up, go for a walk, or maybe let the dog out (this is what I do) instead of looking at your phone take 2-3 minutes and focus on the things (or people) you are grateful for.
  2. Gratitude jar – All you need here is a mason jar and post-it notes.  At the end of each day, write what you are grateful for on a post-it note and put it in the jar. At the end of the year pull out all the notes and read them.  Life changing folks!
  3. Five Minute Journal app – As usual there’s always “an app for that” and a gratitude journal is no different. The great thing about this app is it will even send you notifications and daily affirmations.
  4. Five Minute Journal – if you want to keep it old school with writing in a journal, might I suggest this one.
  5. Social media – I know that I am always telling people to spend less time on social media. This #5 doesn’t change that.  What if instead of posting a silly meme or what you ate for the lunch, you post what you’re grateful for?  Maybe even tag the person if it’s someone that made your day.  Add hashtags like #gratitude or #grateful to help spread the joy.

I always like to share articles that I find regarding the subject matter I’m talking about.  I hope you enjoy them!

Reader’s Digest – 12 Ways to Wake Up Happier Tomorrow Morning (and Every Morning)
Philly Voice – Harvard study finds strong link between gratitude and happiness
Zen Habits – Why Living a Life of Gratitude Can Make You Happy