With all kinds of food now available any time, any where I think we're in danger of forgetting what a diet is, let alone ensuring we have one. I don't mean 'to diet' as in to lose weight I mean our everyday blend of food. I keep seeing this 2000 calories a day guideline but who actually knows what that is in terms of the food we consume?
It's just too easy to eat treats everyday and this to become the norm. We mentally don't give ourselves time to even realise what we're eating half of the time. I feel we're falling into a culture of compliance, just blindly stuffing things into our mouths without understanding or taking responsibility for the impacts on our body and health.
The famous quote, 'you are what you eat' is fact, your body uses what you eat to function. It gives you energy, it feeds your muscles and brain etc. So I question what percentage of us give ourselves the vitimins, minerals and blend of food needed to keep you at your best? Afterall you only get one body if you abuse it then that's your choice.
As I'm sure you can see strength of mind and self control are becoming much more important as the availablility of so many food choices increase. You now have to rely on will power and decisiveness to create a diet which you're happy with and to stick to it, despite many temptations from advertising, shops, kids, restaurants, takeaways etc.
So what makes up a good diet? Now this is about balance so I urge you to include some treats. We're not talking about deprivation here, doing that sends you into craving mode and you're more likely to eat the entire supply instead of just the one. So be kind on yourself and your body and create something which is a balance.
This is what I focus on in my weight loss plan. A healthy balance which you can sustain and enjoy free from demons, habits and thoughts which have held you back. Along with some brain boosting power to make you feel great and tips to help you be nice to yourself. If this sounds like something you need please do get in touch, I'd love to help.
Have a great day.
There's something I've noticed from talking to people this week and it's something which causes a lot of anxiety and feelings of personal rubbishness. Which is one of my pet hates. Making yourself feel inadequate or not good enough is one human nature I'm sure we could do without.
So what is it I'm talking about?......It's the frequency we compare our inner world with someone elses outer world. We seem to do it way too often from what I've seen. This excessive comparing creates all the shoulds and shouldn't that we add to our mental ammo to crush our self worth eg "well this person does this, that and the other so why can't I, I should be able to do that" or "I must be a failure because they can balance 3 jobs, 3 kids and a stack of plates on their head and still be smiling". Ok so that last one is a slight exaduration but I'm sure you get my point.
How many times have you done this? How many times have you looked at someone elses's situation or demeanor and made assumptions about what you should or shouldn't be able to do? And what influence has this had over how you feel about yourself?
So lets flip this around, do you go around and melt into a jibbering wreck in the middle of the street or do you but your best face on when others are around? I think I know what your answer will be.
We all but on our brave face when in the company of others, telling everyone we're fine when actually we're not. With the exception of true friends I guess which is when the chocolate and tissues come out or if you're a man you go somewhere for a man chat.
Comparing your inner feelings, thoughts and emotions to someone elses outward facade is like comparing apples and oranges. You don't know the truth about their situation, what's going on in their head, they might just be feeling the same as you (or felt the same way once). Similarly others will be looking at your situation and thinking gosh I wish I was more like that.
My advice would be to look at others realistically, we all benefit from seeing and learning from what other people do but we don't have to put our rose tinted glasses on when we see it. Neither do we need to be nasty and assume everything is terrible in their life, we just need to strike a balance and live in the reality. Maybe even share and communicate to understand how others really feel rather than making your own assumptions.
So banish the unrealistic shoulds and shouldn't you've presumed to be true from watching others and notice when this natural human behaviour rears it's ugly head. I'm sure doing this would do wonders for your self esteem.
Hope this helps.
I was inspired to write this today by a Horizon programme my friend posted on Facebook. It asked the question, "can you change your personality". Interesting concept and some interesting findings which would be really beneficial if you are prone to anxiety, insomnia and general pessimism.
If you're interested in watching the programme the link is here:http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b036ypxw/Horizon_20122013_The_Truth_About_Personality/
I loved the mix of psychology and scientific proof in the programme as it's not easy to have quantitative proof of the effects on someone's personality.
If you don't have time to watch the programme here's a roundup of the things I found interesting and how these can help.
- A study in Ohio (USA) has found that a positive outlook can extend your life by an average of 7 years. If we could cure cancer tomorrow it would add only half as much!! So mental attitude has a bigger impact than originally thought.
- Only about 50% of your personality is from your genes, the other is from life experience/events and therefore it's much more maliable than you would expect.
- Changes in your personality can happen quite quickly by training your brain to see the positives and by practising living in the moment (both things can be taught by using hypnotherpy). The guy in this programme saw significant scientific results in just 7 weeks.
So if you are suffering from anxiety, insomnia and general pessimism you don't have to put up with it, you can literally change your mind.
Want to get started? Give me a call on 0113 2536137 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
and you can learn the techniques becoming optimistic.
Have a great day.
Today I have a question for you....why is it human nature to critisise and pressure ourselves so much? I swear nobody could possibly be a bigger critic than ourselves and what's more concerning is the level of impact this can have is massive and I do mean uba-massive.
So many of my weight loss clients have convinced themselves that they're rubbish at losing weight and instead are at the mercy of an uncontrollable inner self that sabotages their every attempt. They're trapped with all the old evidence of past successes and failures along with our super healthy culture which seems to have exploded lately to a point where you feel a failure if you have a single slice of cheesecake.
They're all desperately trying to get to 'that' goal (which is usually unbelievably big) and they're fighting the whole way mostly feeling it's exhaustingly hard work. An averlanche of shoulds, shouldn't and guilt erode any will power and motivation they once managed to muster and they end up convinced it's just too difficult, can't do it or might as well just get used to the fact they're fat. Sound in any way familiar?
Well I bet that does wonders for their self esteem and leds itself beautifully to raiding the fridge for something to make them feel better. What's more I can probably guarantee that won't be a piece of fruit!
So what's the answer?
Another question for you: why don't we natually go for the low hanging fruit? The easy stuff which wouldn't be too much of a big deal to change? We all know the little stuff adds up the a mountain so why not concentrate on that and eventually you'll get there without the emotional hard battle of wills. To start with you'd lose a few pounts, which would boost your mood and give your brain the evidence that you can do it. Then you're more likely to start the snowball effect, a few more good decisions and a few more etc. So why not be nice to yourself for a change?
Take each decision as just that, one easy decision and sod the bigger picture, high pressure, 1000 reasons why it won't work, hard work attitude. It's just one little decision at a time and I'm sure you could do that.
I dare you to take the challenge, what are the little things which you could do and start doing them one easy decision at a time.
Go on be nice to yourself and good luck losing those pounds.
If you'd have said to me 2 years ago, when I was struggling to breathe after walking up Malham cove on the Jane Tomlinson 14 mile walk, that I'd complete the Yorkshire 3 Peaks I'd have laughed so hard and dismissed it without question.
But here I am having completed the 24.5 miles and 700 meters in elevation in 13 hours. To say I am proud just doesn't seem to convey the feeling to it's fullest. And to top that we estimate that the team of 20 of us has raised approx £8000 for the Reuben's Retreat charity. Sponsorship money is still coming in so the accurate amount will be announced soon. It's just incredible.
I still can't believe I did it to be honest, the small steps really do add up to a mountain. Then you look back and think wow, did I really do that! Along the way there were times when I had to keep focused, sometimes just on the next few feet and conquer my inner negativity but there were also times of laughter and fun.
Reminds me of any goal and the value of taking it bit by bit. You'll be amazed at where you end up. I've learnt that its your mind that gives in way before your capability.
So what's your personal goal/challenge? Something you've wanted to do but talked yourself out of? Let me know in the comments box below. Sign up for it today because you're more capable than you think and the feeling you get when you've done it is amazing.
Thank you to everyone who donated and made it so worth while.
Do you feel it yet? That feeling of crawling out of hibernation and feeling the benefits of increasing your vitamin D levels?
Yes, spring feels like it's finally here and I can already see the difference. I've spoken to my neighbours twice as much in the last few weeks, had a sudden urge to deep clean the house and generally been better equiped to get myself out of bed in the morning.
I think it's amazing how much impact a little change can have on how you feel and I don't know about you but I have to keep reminding myself of that fact. Too often I overlook the little things, wrongly thinking that couldn't possibly make it better.
Haha, silly isn't it........no I won't try all that easy stuff, I'll tackle this mountain instead because that's bound to make me feel much better. Never mind the ditch the coffee and opt for a little more fruit, that's far too easy. Let's starve ourselves and feel miserable instead.
Ok so that's a little extreme but you get my point. We generally feel we need to challenge ourselves to big things and forget all the simple stuff which could have such an impact.
So this week I've vowed to make the little changes which I've cast off as insigificant. I'm going for the easy stuff like making the effort to smile more and finally getting around to that job which is always bottom of the priority list. What do you think? Will these things make a difference to how I feel?
If so, what little things could you do to improve your springy feeling? Be sure to know that they will make a difference to how you feel so go on but your efforts into picking the easy stuff for a change. You might even surprise yourself by how much of an impact they can actually have.
Have a great weekend
Last night I met a group of amazing ladies and I got into a conversation which I'd like to share. It has humour and advice which I think will make you smile on this snowy spring day.
Have you ever found yourself in a situation where you feel overwhelmed? The underdog, the opposite of confident and far from strong or proud. An occasion when you should logically be fine but crumble into something totally different. And you know that happens then, your brain takes over with all the negative wit it can muster, telling you you're not qualified, gonna mess up, not as good as everyone else, don't deserve to be there, can't do the task in hand. If you weren't so busy kicking yourself you'd probably marvel as how creative and cunningly hurtful your mind can be. I'm sure very few people could muster something more devastating than the contents of your own mind.
I've experienced countless examples myself, sitting in a meeting quiet as a mouse when I could have spoken quite eloquently on the given topic. Furthermore kicked myself profusely after the event at how unbelievably rubbish I'd been. This generated endless laughs as we recalled the devastation and shear skillful wonder of these situations last night. Great we can all have a laugh about it after the fact.
But far from a comical part of life these situations actually matter and do effect our lives. Maybe it's a job interview or a meeting which could change your life, maybe even the simple things which devastate our confidence and limits our abilities. So here's the practical yet enjoyable way of getting a grip before you crumble.
1) Before you step into the situation think about how you'd like to feel.
2) Ask yourself what would make you feel that way. Examples from last night were putting on a pair of leopard print shoes or imagining you're walking like Angelina Jolie.
3) Now you need a trigger, something which you see/hear/feel just before the situation eg pressing on the door handle, the carpet changes, the walls change from brick to glass windows. You could also use the noise levels increase or the air is cooler. Pick something which you'd notice.
4) Next imagine that every time to come into that situation the minute you hit the trigger you do your thing eg put on that pair of shoes, become Angelina etc. And mentally do this every time you come across the situation.
You'll be amazed how it changes how you feel and act. If nothing else it will put a smile on your face which always feels better. I think I may keep a pair of those shoes for myself :)
Let me know how it works for you.
Yay the Refreshed Minds wedding services now have a dedicated home. Check out www.theweddingkarma.com
for tips, freebies, help and information.
Weddings are an amazing time in your life and are meant to be enjoyed. And that means all of it, from the engagement, through the planning and even avoiding the wedding blues. So if you're not enjoying it for any reason check out the website and keep in touch.
I have lots of things to share with you so this website will only get bigger and better. I suggest saving it as a favourite so you can keep your eye out for any new stuff.
I'm always looking for feedback to so let me know what you think. Email, Facebook, Twitter, I don't mind how people talk to me, I love talking! My contact info is at the top of each page of the website.
Hope you like and enjoy the new addition to the Refreshed Minds family. If so please share it so everyone can benefit.Many thanks
So you start the new year with great intentions, you know you want/need to do something, maybe get fit, stop smoking, stop stressing, be nicer or lose a few pounds. Whatever it is you wake up and think this is the year you'll make it happen.
So how is your resolution going so far?
I was struck by this article I read today in the guardian where 78% of people failed in their resolution. So what can you do to make sure you're in the 22% that succeed? Well here's my top 5 tips.http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/2009/dec/28/new-years-resolutions-doomed-failure
1) Start with one thing. Trying to change to many things in your life at once is a recipe for disaster and one thing generally snowballs into others so pick something important and stick to that one for now.
2) Set a goal, what is it you want? If you want to lose weight, how much do you want to lose? If you're stopping smoking how much money will you have and what will you do with it? Having a goal gives you something tangible to work towards.
3) Bring that goal to life. What will it be like? What will you be able to do? How will you feel? This is a way of checking the goal to make sure you'd be happy when you've achieved it. Think about the negatives too and work around them. This way they won't stand in your way of success. So for example if you're going to lose weight you'll need to buy new clothes, maybe you know you can't afford it. Ok so you could decide to sell the old things to make money for the new stuff. Doing this means that excuses doesn't hold back your progress.
4) Break the goal down into simple steps you can manage. What are you going to do each day/week etc which will lead to your goal.
5) Rewards. Decide what you can do along the way to celebrate your achievements. Have a range of rewards from something small for those little successes to larger things to celebrate amazing achievements. Maybe get your family, friends or kids involved so they have a way of supporting you. When kids are little they suggest using a reward chart so they can see what they've done and have a sense of pride. You need the same pride so think about how you can reward yourself along the way.
Finally, if you do slip up along the way take each one as just that. Realise how far you've come, don't drown in guilt or entertain the brain's 'oh well I might as well give up' messages. Get back on it and keep going.
And that's it. Good luck with your amazing successes in 2013.
Hope this helpsZoe
Want more help to quit smoking?
I'm running a small group session in Leeds on Sunday 10th Feb and you can reserve a place for only £20. More info can be found in the Products & Services, Quit smoking page.
Have you ever noticed how someone can say 1 negative thing and you feel deverstated, maybe you mull it over in your brain for days, not sleep well because you can't stop thinking about it or just feel really angry.
Compared to someone saying 1 nice thing, which lingers for a few minutes. Then its impact is gone and you're on with the rest of the day.
Technically these things should have equal impact so why does your brain not work that way? Well here's my take on it. I hope it helps you understand and therefore work with your brain instead of against it.
A couple of things to think about.
1) What do you hold dear? Your values and beliefs are deep routed, you hold these very sacred. If the 'negative' comment is challenging these, you end up with a very emotional reaction because it's like they're challenging the very person you are. Look at any relious conflict, someone holds a belief which they've based their life on, someone else comes and says it's not true and hay presto we have a very strong emotional response. They only need to say a few words.
2) Conscious vs unconscious. I explain your unconscious like a massive filing cabinet full of all the experiences, sights, sounds and feelings you've ever had. And your conscious can only hold a small amount of information. If you've heard you can't do it often enough you have a huge filing cabinet full which says that is true. One small comment saying the opposite is like a single water droplet in a large pond. It just doesn't make an visible impact.
So what do we do to change it?
1) Know what your beliefs and values are and make a conscious effort to understand that not everyone's is the same and that's ok. They're not criticising you they're mearly posing a different way of looking at life. Neither view will be wrong, just different.
2) You can override the unconscious filing cabinet by filling those files with something else, once there is enough of them you'll start to believe it. Tell yourself the positive thing over and over again. See it around you, look at pictures relating to it, fill yourself with it. Allow yourself to notice and take in that positive comment and give a genuine thank you. Soon your filing cabinet will be telling you something new and it's the occasional negative comment which seems out of place.
Have a great weekend.