1. Set your intentions for the day with affirmations. Before getting out of bed, take a couple minutes and verbalize out loud or to yourself how you want this day to go. I like to say it out loud. I think it has more impact when you hear your own voice setting your intentions (your family or your dog may find some inspiration as well!). Set your intention for how the work day will go, how your latest report or speech will be received, even how well your kids will behave at the dinner table that evening. Keep it positive. Your intention is for only good to come from this day.
2. Visualization. Taking a few minutes each morning to visualize how you want your life to flow, will make it more likely to become a reality. You’ve probably heard the phrase: you can’t get what you want, until you know what you want. This is why visualization is so important. Think of how your dream life would feel, the people who would be a part of it, the surroundings, the work and your daily routine. Set this in your memory and take a few minutes to focus on this every morning. Worst case scenario? It puts a smile on your face and elevates your mood. Want to make this exercise even more powerful? Write it down!
3. Walk in Nature. Want to kick start your metabolism? A brisk walk in the morning before work will kick start your metabolism but it also gets those happy endorphins going. There is something very soothing and grounding when getting back to nature. We spend most of our hours indoors, so take a few minutes first thing in the morning and walk the neighborhood. Your health will thank you!
4. Meditation. I’ve found that I can usually carve out a few minutes in the early morning for meditation rather than waiting until the end of the day when there seem to be too many tasks to accomplish before bed. Meditation often frightens people or they think it’s too hard to do. In reality, just sitting for 5-10 minutes and focusing on your breath will quiet the mind and help you reap the rewards of meditation. When you find thoughts and problems entering your mind while sitting quietly, observe them and then let them go. Refocus on your breath again until your mind quiets down. I teach people in my workshops that there isn’t one right way to do it. The purpose of meditation is to give your mind a break and to relax and focus inward. Just sitting quietly for a few minutes provides enough benefit. *Need a little divine guidance? I help people one-on-one learn different meditation styles. I would be honored to help you. Click here to set up a complimentary 30 minute call to discuss how I can help you learn how to ease anxiety, stress and cultivate more joy in your life with a regular meditation practice.
5. Offer Gratitude. It’s hard to be angry, upset, depressed or out of sorts when you start thinking of all the good things that are happening in your life. We all have at least one or two things to be grateful for, so try focusing on these gifts rather than what you are lacking. It can be as simple as being thankful for your comfortable bed and a good night sleep, your family or pets you share your life with, the sunshine, the fun little outfit you picked out to wear today or maybe something we take for granted here in America as having the ability to wake up to a hot shower with running water. Whatever it is, and however bad you may be feeling about life that moment, try to find the gratitude in one little thing and say a big thank you.
6. Read or listen to inspirational quotes or book. Find your inspirational authors and listen to them regularly for motivation while in the shower, making breakfast or driving to work. Need some suggestions? Check some of these great people whose works can be found on youtube for free: Tony Robbins, Wayne Dyer, Louise Hay, Deepak Chopra, Eckhart Tolle
and Cheryl Richardson. You can also check out my book, The Wisdom of You, A Transformational Journey to Creating an Extraordinary Life. In my new book I share my own personal struggles and the tools and techniques I used to face life’s challenges and rise strong. These powerful tools will help you reconnect with your greatest self and find your power, passion and purpose, improve your relationships and ultimately take control of your life. You can download a free chapter and learn more on my website at www.PeaceandPear.com
7. Eat a good breakfast. It really is the most important meal and sets the tone for the day. Take the extra few minutes and make a healthy smoothie or egg scramble to get your day started right. So many of us are in the habit of grabbing a quick bagel, muffin or highly processed, sugar-laden protein bars and these foods are hijacking your day. Foods loaded with sugar, simple carbohydrates and artificial ingredients will leave you feeling tired and hungry in a very short time. This leads to brain fogginess, moodiness, weight gain and fatigue. See below for a healthy breakfast recipe to kick-start your day.
Try and make as many of these actions, if not all a part of your morning ritual and you will begin to see results within one short week. If you continue beyond that first week, they will become habits, helping you create a happier, healthier, more balanced life. I’ve seen amazing results from practicing these simple strategies, how about you? I would love to hear about your daily rituals and if this article has helped you.
P.S... The new Self-Care Gift Box is now available and we've included free shipping for a limited time! This unique gift box is curated especially for you or to give as a gift for someone you care about. It is filled with beautiful self-care products that will feed your soul. Developed and written by transformational coach, Christine Porter, each product is designed to take you on a journey of self-discovery with help and guidance in creating your best life. Makes a thoughtful, heart-felt gift. Give as a holiday, birthday or mother's day gift or for someone who needs a gentle reminder to slow down and practice more
self-care. Check it out here.
P.S.S... need a little extra inspiration? Check out my Peace and Pear Facebook page on Tuesday nights at 7pm (EDT) where I host live workshops and mini retreats to feed your soul. You can watch past episodes also on Peace and Pear's YouTube channel.
Peace, love and pear!
Christine Porter, CHHP, AADP
Board-Certified Wellness and Transformational Coach
Founder of Peace and Pear: A Mindfulness Company Creating Products and Programs to Feed Your Soul
Ever have one of those really long weeks that seems like it may never end? I’ve had this feeling for the past week now. It seems like no matter what I do, I can’t get ahead of the workload, find time for myself or make all those healthy meals I was planning to make.
I haven’t totally fallen overboard. I’m not eating at fast food restaurants, making mashed potatoes out of box (oh there were years where this was my “go to” side dish) or binging on donuts, bagels and candy bars. But I haven’t been juicing as much or eating many veggies and I’ve started snacking on chips and salsa and sugary granola bars. Canned tuna has crept in as a main dinner staple. I’m frequenting the sushi bar and gluten free pizza has been on my plate more than I’d like as I struggle to get a quick lunch.
I’m starting to feel the fatigue and my sugar and gluten cravings are starting to kick in. Where’s the veggies? Where’s the clean eating I’ve been following for years? I’ve allowed a crazy work schedule to take over my life.
The less attention I pay to nutrition and the more I don’t cook at home and start buying even the so called “healthy foods” at the store, the IFLC syndrome kicks in (also known as: I Feel Like Crap). The more I eat like this, the more I begin to crave the sugary, high-carb foods that packed the pounds on years ago. As a wellness coach, I know this. So what gives?
Life has become a little off balance, much like the days when I worked in the high pressure, fast paced advertising industry. I remember I kept a steady diet of coffee, sugar, packaged foods, sandwiches and donuts, leftover from the early morning office meeting, to get me through. Oh and lots of wine and cheese happy hours with colleagues as we decompressed from our long, pressure-cooker days.
Those were really long days. There was a lot of stress. There was great anxiety over aggressive deadlines and a general feeling of dread that hovered over my days as I sometimes struggled to keep up and be creative. Ever felt like that? It’s uncomfortable and if you live with that feeling long enough, you begin to pick up bad habits like I did and start emotional eating to help ease the stress and frustration. And we all know that doesn’t work.
I’ve left much of that behind but we all have great intentions and we all have lives that sometimes get in the way of what we think we should do and what we can do.
There is always that delicate balance. And while we can’t always control the “little things” that hijack our days, we can pay attention to these events and try for “better” the next day.
Remember, your most precious asset is you. Take good care of it.
Meditation and Mindfulness have become regular practices that have helped me get my life more in balance, reduce my anxiety and build more resiliency. I also strive to sleep 8 hours a night and am very mindful of my emotions and triggers that can set me off in a downward spiral. I’m also aware that what I put in my mouth to eat is important. My eating habits are a part of what affects my mood, my anxiety levels and the amount of resiliency I have in any given moment.
When I find myself searching for a quick meal at the store, I ask myself; how will this make me feel? If it doesn’t fuel me, it most likely will deplete me. This is the fine art of making the food/mood connection.
I don’t beat myself up anymore when I have a bad day of eating or even if it lasts a couple of days. But I try to be more conscious of this and make adjustments to my schedule and put myself first again. This isn’t being selfish, it’s a form of self-care. This is taking care of yourself so you can be of service to those you love and care about. If you are depleted, there isn’t much left to give anyone, let alone yourself. That’s when things start to fall apart and we spiral into self-destructive thoughts and habits.
So what are some simple steps we all can do to make better food choices when in a pinch? Making larger batches of food and having left over’s for the week is a life saver. I love the concept of cooking once and eating twice. Or more! My grandmother was an expert at this. She always had leftovers and most of the time could make another 2 or 3 quick meals out of last night’s dinner.
Now when I grill dinner for family and friends, I try to add additional protein and veggies to the recipe so I have leftovers to add to my salads for the week. This helps me eliminate frequent trips to the store to get “less than healthy” packaged salads with sugary, carb loaded salad dressings. Making smoothies ahead of time and storing in mason jars and freezing helps on those frantic mornings when you need a quick grab-and-go breakfast. Or having hard-boiled eggs on hand. What about a delicious twist on an old classic, oatmeal. Now I'm talking about real oatmeal you have to cook in a pot, not the little packets you add water to or microwave. Those instant oatmeal packets are full of quick oats with little fiber and a whole lot of sugar added. Real steel cut oatmeal is a great breakfast option you can make the night before in large batches and enjoy all week. Add chia seeds, nuts and berries to add extra nutrition and fiber. When we don’t have convenient foods on-hand on busy mornings, we usually make bad choices and end up grabbing a bagel or going through a drive thru window. We also tend to overeat throughout the day when we skip breakfast.
Bottom line, I wasn’t prepared as much as I normally would be this past couple of weeks due to travel and a busy work schedule. But I’m not going to beat myself up. I’m going to do better starting today and go shopping so I can prepare for the upcoming week! It takes a little bit of planning but in the long run I feel and look better. That’s my goal for today. How about you? What little changes can you make to keep on a healthy eating path?
P.S. Need some extra inspiration in the "taking care of myself" department? The new Self-Care Gift Box is available now! This unique self-care gift box is curated especially for you. It is filled with beautiful self-care products that will feed your soul. Developed and written by
transformational coach, Christine Porter, each product is designed to take you on a journey of self-discovery with help and guidance in creating your best life. It also makes a thoughtful, heart-felt gift this upcoming holiday season. Oh, did I mention I’m offering free shipping for a limited time? Take a peek inside here.
Peace, love and pear!
Recently, I ran a workshop with a group of amazing people. Everyone was so engaged, inspired, supportive and eager to improve their health, eating habits and mindset as well as to learn ways to create lasting changes in their lives so they could go from surviving to thriving.
I always get inspired and “fueled up” when I get a chance to conduct these workshops and coaching classes. I feel energized and really fulfilled knowing I am sharing knowledge that can be life changing.
What fuels us is the substance of true living. It’s our positive thoughts, the healthy foods we eat, our feelings of being needed and supported, having a deep sense of purpose and passion that should be our fuel of choice. Yet many of us struggle to find this fuel and can end up running out of gas feeling depleted and sick or worse just numb and tired.
Just as it’s important to eat real, whole foods and avoid sugar and chemicals, it’s also important to nurture your emotional side. Very early on in my wellness coaching career, I discovered the relevance of the concept of primary and secondary foods. It’s pretty simple concept but a very powerful one that I do most of my teaching around.
All the things that we eat and put on our bodies (and that’s a biggie because our skin is our largest organ), is considered, surprisingly, secondary foods. Just as important, if not more in my opinion are our primary foods.
Primary foods are all the things that fuel us emotionally and spiritually. Think about your career or your job. Do you enjoy it? Is it fulfilling? Do you look forward to your days? Or do you dread getting out of bed in the morning? What about your relationships with family and friends? Are you feeling supported or depleted? Are you in a chronic state of giving? Are the kids taking all your time and there’s nothing left for you? Do you have a spiritual practice of quiet meditation, sitting calmly perhaps or just carving a little downtime for yourself? Are you comfortable with your finances or are you in a perpetual state of needing to make more money? Have you taken a little time and created a budget that can help you achieve your goals and alleviate the unnecessary spending?
More importantly, are you living in a state of chronic stress and fear that’s keeping you uptight, sleepless and overeating to relieve anxiety?
All of us have experienced times in our lives that feel out of balance. It’s important to remember we are all a constant work in progress. But the primary foods of life; our relationships, finances, spirituality, career and hobbies are some of the most important things in our life that either keep us healthy, motivated and feeling fulfilled, or they make us miserable, unhealthy and stuck in bad habits and negative thought-patterns.
Stress and depression are a huge detriment to our health and are becoming an epidemic in our society. Not to mention it’s a crappy way to live on a regular basis.
There was a time in my life where I experienced all of these symptoms. I was working all the time trying to make more money because it never seemed enough. I became a workaholic and found most of my enjoyment in running myself into the ground. I treated my body like a machine and I was lonely, tired, stressed, unhappy, overweight and fatigued. My family was feeling the same as they began mimicking my behaviors. Can you relate to this? I hope not, but if you do, you are joining the ranks of millions of Americans caught up in the race of life. But I remember the day when I started thinking, is this all there is? What if I did a little work on myself and tried to change my mindset? What if there is something to the mind/body connection and trying to live a more inspired life. If I really changed my eating patterns, would my moods improve? Could I go from surviving to thriving? Maybe it was time to try something different. Maybe it was time to think differently so I could expect a different outcome.
One of the first things I did was take an inventory of my life. I really looked at what was not serving me well in my life. I began looking at what I wanted and how I could feel more fulfilled. And not just with more “things to buy,” or finding happiness in the bottom of a Ben and Jerry’s ice cream pint! Yes, there is a brief moment of bliss from that, but then, I must confess I am a recovering sugar addict. But the sugar rush is so fleeting and left me with this guilt feeling and really tight jeans!
Years ago, I went on a little 4-day retreat that was life changing. I spent some time quietly journaling, hiking, learning how to meditate and be more mindful. I practiced gentle yoga daily and learned how to eat a healthier diet of lean proteins and veggies. I also cut out processed foods and limited my sugar. What happened next was amazing! I had more energy. My mindset shifted and I started thinking of ways to take this new-found self-care program home with me and incorporate it into my daily life. Even for just a few minutes each day, I began practicing meditation and mindfulness and I began paying attention to my thoughts, feelings and actions. Even around dinner time; I limited my take-out food choices and began cooking some simple and healthy meals. I also realized it was time to go back to school and follow my passion to become a wellness and transformational coach. That led to a new career in which I began writing books. In my new book, The Wisdom of You; A Transformational Journey to Creating an Extraordinary Life, I share my own personal journey and the tools and techniques I learned so that you too can begin your journey to feeling, thinking and looking your best.
It’s a horrible to feel physically or emotionally stuck and I know how this can impact the quality of your daily life. Sluggish, foggy, grumpy and tired are what come to mind when I think about how I was feeling. Many of my clients feel this way also. But constantly waiting for the "right time" to change keeps us stuck. Sometimes you have to take that leap of faith and just go for it!
No more waiting, join me today! Each Tuesday night, at 7pm (EDT), I host a Facebook Live program at Facebook.com/PeaceandPear. I cover a variety of topics from healthy living, self-care, meditation and mindfulness tools and techniques, to self-empowerment and more! It’s fun, it’s educational, it’s thought-provoking and it can be life changing. These episodes are free so stop by and check it out. It’s free transformational coaching that promises to be one of the best hours you will spend on yourself. It’s like a mini retreat for the Soul. You can also watch past episodes at Peace and Pear's YouTube channel.
I’m also giving away more free stuff to jump start your transformation in creating your best life. Log on to my website and sign up to download a free chapter of my new book, The Wisdom of You; A Transformational Journey to Creating an Extraordinary Life. You will automatically receive my free newsletter with tips and recipes, inspirational quotes and self-care reminders. It will also give you information on the upcoming Facebook live episodes so you can mark your calendar and join me live.
While I gave up some things along the way and have had some struggles on my journey, I kept at it. I tried not to berate or judge myself and gave myself permission to just be human and to recognize I am trying my best. Years of living with some bad habits, overworking, feeling rushed and stressed became a normal way to live. It is only natural to realize, it will take some time to make major life shifts and reduce these bad habits.
No more punishing our selves, trust in the process and put one foot in front of the other right now.
Peace, love and pear!