Make your living space a place that honors the person you are. Whether you live in a single room, a small apartment, or a large home, make that space comfortable and attractive for you. If you share your living space with others, have some space that is just for you--a place where you can keep your things and know that they will not be disturbed and that you can decorate any way you choose.
The light at the end of the smoky tunnel was a shining She Recovers Retreat. The timing was perfect; divine some may say. At the end of July, one of the more challenging months I’ve survived in a while, I would board a ferry and meet my favorite women on Salt Spring Island for a week of rejuvenation. There was no way I’d smoke while enjoying nature, doing yoga, and working on recovery. There was no way I’d admit this to my friends or smoke in front of them.
May we use “Live long and prosper” not only as a blessing but also as a way of reminding those with whom we share our journey that long life and prosperity are often more about quality than quantity. This is not an injunction to extend life or wealth. It is an encouragement to seek wisdom, practice selflessness, and live a life worth emulating. May we provide such a powerful example of all these characteristics and more that others will understand how to pass this blessing on to those who come after us.
Me. The tree-sap leaking, makeup melting, yoga ninja. The puddle was growing, and I was non-too gracefully gliding through it. My head hung down between my lubricated hands, my eyes burned, blinded by sweat, and my butt perched high in the air. Every limb wiggled in different directions. Sort of like a newborn fawn might look on an ice rink. Only less graceful. And less cute.
The biggest paradox of “Stand Firm,” as Brinkmann is well aware, is that it calls for an individual solution to a collective problem. There’s good reason to fear being left behind by an accelerating society, especially a society, like ours, that is not kind to those who don’t, or can’t, keep up. Brinkmann at least has the Danish welfare state to fall back on. Still, you don’t need to agree with everything he says to recognize that there is value in reading his book. Mainly, you come away with the comforting sense that there are other people out there struggling with the same pressures and frustrations, who experience similar dissatisfactions and worry about their own inadequacies. That feeling—solidarity—is another Brinkmann value. We may be blundering forward, but we are not blundering alone.
Psychologists have been studying "expressive writing," or journaling about difficult moments in your life, for a few decades. They've found that a few minutes journaling improves everything from your mood to immune system to sporting performance. Psychology researchers have repeatedly found that keeping a "gratitude journal" can improve well-being.
When you spring clean your house, you take stock of what you have, get rid of things you don't need, organize what is left, and clear space to bring in new things. You need to do these same things to spring clean your life. This means getting rid of things that no longer work for you, updating the way you do things, and freeing up some space for new and exciting opportunities. These are the four steps of spring cleaning your life: Taking Stock, Cleaning Out the Old, Tying Up Loose Ends and Trying Something New.
YOU are more important than your weight or body size—believe it! Your health and happiness can be hurt by drastic weight loss plans. If you have not yet reached your adult height, rapid weight loss could interfere with your growth. Instead of trying extreme approaches, focus on making small lifestyle changes that you can stick with for life. This approach will leave you feeling healthier and happier in the long run.
Fresh, Frozen, or Canned Fruits ― don’t think just apples or bananas. All fresh, frozen, or canned fruits are great choices. Be sure to try some “exotic” fruits, too. How about a mango? Or a juicy pineapple or kiwi fruit! When your favorite fresh fruits aren’t in season, try a frozen, canned, or dried variety of a fresh fruit you enjoy. One caution about canned fruits is that they may contain added sugars or syrups. Be sure and choose canned varieties of fruit packed in water or in their own juice.
Try a lower-calorie version. Use lower-calorie ingredients or prepare food differently. For example, if your macaroni and cheese recipe uses whole milk, butter, and full-fat cheese, try remaking it with non-fat milk, less butter, light cream cheese, fresh spinach and tomatoes. Just remember to not increase your portion size. For more ideas on how to cut back on calories, see Eat More Weigh Less.
Similarly, podcasts are a great on-the-go news source. And a lot of the time they’re just what you need to unwind without completely wasting away in front of the TV (not that I have anything against relaxing that way). I’m a big fan of tackling one podcast during my commute—half of it on the way to work, half on the way back, and the stories always bring out some real emotions. (For reference, my favorites are This American Life and You’re the Expert.)
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