Have you ever asked how someone’s day was going and the response began, “Well, it was going great until…“ And then it continues on about something that someone else did… or something that happened that ruined the person’s day?
Human instinct makes us want to listen to their story and agree with them that they have every right to be feeling what they’re feeling – instead of feeling better!
We feel compelled to agree with them that whatever happened was unjust and unfair and should never have happened.
In my first month as a Coach, I did this during a coaching session and my own Coach (who happened to be supervising me during the session) stopped me immediately. She said,
“Wait! Do you know what you just did?
Your client was drowning in the deep end with no way out.
Instead of throwing her a lifeline,
You jumped in and swam a lap with her!”
She was right. My job as Coach and even as I see it… as a good friend… is to help people feel better… not worse. My jumping in and swimming a lap wasn’t good for either of us. My client continued feeling awful about her situation. And I was totally ineffective as her Coach.
That day I decided I would rather be a Life-Liner than a Lapper.
Being a Lapper can get exhausting. Lappers spend lots of the time in the pool, tread lots of water, and considering all the time spent in the water… can make themselves and their friends all wrinkly before their time. Besides that, even with good intentions, Lappers can actually weigh down the people they want to help.
Making the choice to be a Life-Liner takes guts. Gone are the days of agreeing with friends and people in order to be liked. Being a Life-Liner involves searching for tools – life jackets, kickboards, and ropes – in the form of words that offer glimpses of hope.
Being a good friend/ coach/ confidant doesn’t mean we need to agree with those we care about. It’s just the opposite… we care enough about them to find the words to say:
The ladder’s over there.
One of the most common questions I am asked is, “What should I be eating?” My feeling is that food should be flavorful and fun while also being healthy. After all, this is the fuel we provide our body. Food is used for celebrations, gatherings, ceremonies, and many of us plan our vacations around food!
Below is a summary of healthy eating recommendations. Try to spread your food out over 4-6 meals per day. They can be any combination of breakfast, mid-morning snack, lunch, mid-afternoon snack, dinner, and an evening snack (though try not to eat within a couple of hours of bedtime).
- Vegetables: 7-9 servings of vegetables daily.
- Fruits: 1-2 servings per day.
- Protein: With each meal (approximately 10 grams per meal).
- Beans/legumes/lentils should be the primary source of protein.
- If you’re going to eat meat, then eat fish, turkey, or chicken. I’m not talking about fried fish or chicken! (I know that some of your mouths are watering right now thinking about fried fish and fried chicken, but NO FRIED FOOD!) Try to get organic, grass-fed meat whenever possible.
- Avoid processed meats (cold cuts), bacon, sausage, and ham.
- Grains: Whole grain is better (oats, whole grains, barley, quinoa, etc.).
- Dairy: Primarily yogurt or yogurt smoothie.
- Drink: Water as your primary drink.
- Bread, Rice, Potato, Pasta, Cheese – try not to eat these after lunch.
The above is a broad summary of a healthy eating pattern. Everyone’s caloric needs are different and you should create your meal plan based on your health conditions, allergies, and other needs. For more information, you can refer to Harvard University’s Evidence-Based Healthy Eating plate (web link: http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/) or to the US government’s My Plate (web link: http://www.choosemyplate.gov/). They have several resources and tools to help guide you to healthier eating and healthier living!
Kaushal B. Nanavati , MD, FAAFP, ABIHM
Physical Exercise – Make it a Daily Appointment!... in the April issue of THRiVEcny.
I can’t possibly be the only one who has ever said things to myself like:
- I’m so impatient.
- I need to be more involved.
- I’m always late.
- I am really unorganized.
Really… I know… we are SO kind to ourselves!
But anyway, these statements may all be true… or not. Maybe they’re true sometimes and not other times.
Have you ever had an incredibly stressful day where you felt like you couldn't even catch your breath? And then you thought, “Man, I need to learn how to meditate?”
If stress has you feeling anxious, worried, or depressed maybe now is the time to try meditation! Just a few minutes in meditation can help you feel more relaxed and peaceful.
Despite popular belief, meditation IS for everyone, and you can practice wherever you are. During meditation, you’ll focus your mind away from the incessant thought patterns that play like broken records in your mind. Breaking free from your thoughts, you will experience the peace and aliveness that the present moment has to offer!
Such finely tuned wonders our bodies are -- each working like a delicately balanced machine. When each part functions at its peak, all parts are in harmony and the body is in balance. The healthy body is comprised of a system of glands, organs, nerves, and chemicals. But if one component gets out of order, an imbalance is created and the effect is felt throughout the entire system.
This is the basis of Reflexology.
The principles of Reflexology embody the techniques designed to keep the body's system operating at its peak efficiency, thereby keeping the body in tune.
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