2013 is rapidly approaching! The New Year is traditionally a time to take stock – to reflect on the year just past, and to contemplate our course for the year to come. The New Year is a blank slate for us to plan, and think about any changes we would like to see happen. It’s a perfect time to evaluate where we are and where we want to go.
Whatever you hope for 2013 — to lose weight, to begin an exercise program, to spend more time with family or spend less money —the good news is that those who make formal resolutions tend to have more success in actually making improvements over the long term. Those who make it through the end of January have a good chance of sticking with their goals a lot longer. The reality, though, is that most people who make New Year’s resolutions will not be able to keep them by the end of the year, even with the best of intentions. A third of those resolutions will not last until the end of January, and over half will not make it to July.
There are lots of reasons for this – not having a realistic goal, lack of a strategy, lacking the proper tools, not having enough support. Challenges may occur that threaten to derail even the strongest resolutions and throw you off the track.
Do you use your innate strengths and talents to achieve your aims? Do you even know what they are? Most people don’t! All of us have gifts – special abilities and assets that we were either born with or have developed over time. These traits are the best of you and are sometimes called Signature Strengths – and these core strengths, once recognized, can be harnessed and applied to move you forward towards your goals and help you maintain the changes you want to make, personally, professionally or in your relationships.
Join me for a 6 week Teleclass, Discovering Your Strengths to Achieve Your Goals, where you will uncover your unique Signature Strengths! Every Monday, beginning February 4, 2013, at 4:00 – 5:00 p.m. MST/6:00 – 7:00 p.m. EST.
In this Teleclass you will:
•Identify your top strengths and talents and learn how to use them to move you toward your goals.
•Discover the blocks that might be preventing you from moving forward, and how to overcome them.
•Learn how to create more of what you want in your life and less of what you don’t want.
•Learn practical tools and strategies that can help you develop a focused, strengths-based approach to making positive choices in your life.
•Create a vision and a step-by-step plan to achieve your most important priorities.
•As an added bonus, I am also offering a 30 minute private coaching strategy session to all participants.
For the month of December only, I am offering this workshop at the very low investment of $197.00. The price for this workshop will be $297.00 after January 1st, so please book your space now. Space is limited and advance registration is required.
Upon registration, you will receive a confirmation and the bridge number you will need to dial into the call. Dial in from the comfort of your home or office. You will see how easily it works!
If you have questions or would like additional information, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call: 303.670.7863.
The holidays are often associated with an over-abundance of food, and with good reason. It’s a time to eat, drink and enjoy parties and other festivities. It is also a time when we make special meals and serve dishes we may not have at other times of the year. We bring out our mom’s special recipes, invite the neighbors over for brunch, and go out of our way to give our best to those we love. And that’s exactly what makes a holiday special, so staying on track with eating healthy doesn’t mean depriving yourself of joining in on the celebration. What it does mean is planning ahead for holiday dinners and parties, and making smart choices. Here are some ideas to help you do just that:
- Plan healthy meals at home for yourself and your family. Look at your week, and plan to shop for groceries so that you have healthy options on hand. If you are conscious about healthy meal planning most of the time, you’ll be able to allow a splurge here and there.
- Write it down – keeping a food journal has been shown to be an effective way to track your intake and prevent overeating. Aside from being a record of what you eat, it is also a good way to be aware of those times when you might be vulnerable to emotional or mindless eating. Knowing that you have to write down an extra snack may help you to think before you eat, and keeps you accountable.
- Another key advantage of keeping a food journal is that you start to become much more aware of the amount you eat. Portion size is important! Many of us are not even sure what an average portion size is. Some nutritionists estimate restaurant portion sizes are anywhere from two to five times bigger than they were 30 years ago, and our culture reinforces the notion that bigger is better. Take an “average” serving of poultry, meat or fish, for example. One serving is generally considered to be 3 ounces, which would be roughly the size of your palm or a deck of cards. How often is this the reality of a restaurant portion? Pay attention to portion sizes – sometimes a few bites of something is just as satisfying.
- Have a plan. I can’t stress this enough. Planning ahead for a holiday dinner party might mean having a salad with protein that will keep you going until dinnertime, and deciding beforehand on what you will indulge in when you get there. For example, if your hostess is known for her fabulous holiday buffets, you can choose to indulge in smaller portions of her traditional specialties, and only the ones that you would truly enjoy.
- If dinner will be late, have a healthy snack so you don’t arrive at the party starving. A handful of almonds, apple slices with peanut butter or cheese, or carrots with hummus are great. Be sure to stay hydrated. Often we think we are hungry, when we are really thirsty. Some nutrition experts recommend drinking a glass of water before going to a party or dinner. Water is always a good idea, but in this case it can help fill you up and prevent overeating.
- If you are eating out, most restaurants now post menus online. This is a great way to plan ahead. If you know what you are eating before you get there, you eliminate last minute, impulsive choices. You can make an informed decision ahead of time and concentrate on enjoying the company once you arrive.
- Finally, if you do over-indulge, just get back to healthy eating at your next opportunity. Sometimes we tend to think “Well, I blew my healthy food plan, I might as well go ahead and really blow it.” Don’t go there! You may have overdone it – everyone does at times! – but don’t give yourself permission to really overdo it. Just guide yourself back on track. And enjoy the holidays!
Hosted by Leslie Gail and Suzanne Levy
Two Tele-classes to Ease you into a Delightful Holiday Season
Monday, December 3, 2012 – 7:00-8:00 p.m. (MST)
Monday, December 10, 2012 – 7:00-8:00 p.m. (MST)
The holiday season is right around the corner and it’s no secret that this time of year can also include holiday stress!. There’s more to do of just about everything – visits, parties, entertaining, out of town relatives visiting. Do you stress about preparing, planning, shopping, gift-giving? Do your healthy habits fall by the wayside? Do you spend more time “doing” rather than being and enjoying? Do you get anxious feeling you have to spend more than you can afford?
Your life is about to get easier because we’re here to help. It is absolutely possible to create a Delightful Holiday Season this year and every year because we are going to give you a blueprint for making it happen.
Brew a cup of tea, get comfy and join us fireside for two Monday night classes on creating more joy, ease and delight this Holiday season.
Here’s what you will get:
- Each class will provide you with practical, special and simple tips and ideas that you can immediately begin using to create an unforgettable holiday season easily and effortlessly.
- Daily practices to help you stay centered and stress-free.
- You will get worksheets, tools and resources to help you design an appealing and authentic experience that is a true reflection of the holiday you want to create for family and friends.
- You will leave with a personal blueprint to take you through the season with grace and ease.
- A Q&A at the end of each class.
- Support and accountability via weekly email check-in.
- You will meet inspiring, empowered and like-minded women!
- You will be eligible for future discounts and bonuses from both of us.
- A special surprise holiday gift from us to you!
If you have any questions at all, please contact either of us at:
Special: Bring a friend for 50% off the workshop price at time of registration.
If you’re like most people, you probably have goals you want to accomplish or changes you have thought about making at one time or another. It may be you want to lose that last 10 pounds, or are thinking about changing careers. You may have thought about getting started, or even taken the first steps. Maybe you haven’t been sure where to begin. You might also have fallen into thinking that goes like this: “Someday, when (fill in the blank), I am going to (fill in the blank again…”) Despite really good intentions and for whatever reason, your goal, your dream, keeps going on the back burner. Sometimes life, with its competing priorities, comes between you and your aim. Or you may start out with enthusiasm, only to find yourself getting bored, or losing motivation, at some point. These things happen to most everyone at one time or another, especially when contemplating making a significant change or starting out on a new path. If you find yourself in any of these scenarios, it may be time for you to consider hiring a personal coach.
What does a coach do, and how might one benefit you? Coaching is sometimes confused with therapy or counseling, but it is neither of these. It isn’t consulting or advising. These are different approaches with different skill sets and, even though there may be some similarities, there are also important distinctions. Personal coaching is a process which is sometimes referred to as a designed alliance between client and coach. It is a professional relationship that is based on the client’s agenda – his or her interests, goals and objectives. Coach and client work together to focus on the client’s goals and develop a structure from that starting point to move the client forward.
Clients generally come to coaching because they have experienced difficulty achieving an important goal on their own, or wish to attain greater fulfillment in some area of their life that has remained elusive to them. There are lots of reasons why a person may hire a coach – to be more effective in their career, or to start a new one. They may wish to lose weight, improve their health and fitness, their relationships, or to gain more control over their time and level of stress. Some coaches specifically work with women or men who want to start a business for the first time, write a book, become more effective parents, or plan for retirement.
The International Coach Federation (“ICF”) which sets the standard for professional coaches, defines coaching this way: Coaching is partnering with clients in a thought-provoking and creative process that inspires them to maximize their personal and professional potential.
A professional coach uses various techniques to help clients identify personal, business and/or relationship goals, and develop action plans for their attainment. The client takes the action and the coach assists with positive support and feedback to help the client improve his or her personal effectiveness and ultimate achievement of their aim. This assistance can take a variety of forms, including:
- Assisting a client in defining and clarifying goals, and a vision.
- Helping a client identify their readiness to change, as well as supports and structures they may need to have in place.
- Helping clients target their strengths and values which, in turn, can assist the client in using resources they already possess towards achievement of their aim.
- Assisting the client in identifying the larger goal and then developing an action plan necessary for the interim steps on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis.
- Holding the client accountable for their agreed-upon actions.
- A coach may also help the client identify possible challenges or roadblocks along the way, and strategies to deal with these, as well as provide the client with possible resources and tools to accomplish objectives.
- Support the client in devising ways to maintain the desired change or goal once it is reached.
In the world of health and wellness, wellness coaching has emerged as a new role. It is now recognized that true wellness is much more than an absence of disease. Health and wellness coaching is becoming recognized as an important way to help individuals proactively manage their health, along with learning ways that a holistic lifestyle can impact chronic illnesses and conditions. As a society, we are now living longer than ever before, and we want to enjoy our lives in optimal condition, to thrive as we enter our later years. A wellness coach can assist a client in assessing and designing a healthier lifestyle, weight loss and maintenance, stress management, creating a healthier environment, or a more fulfilling life. Wellness coaches work with clients to bring about desired change with special skills and techniques that help clients discover how to live more fully, to flourish rather than just get by.
A professional coach can be a powerfully ally in the process of moving towards more of what you want in life. If you have that one goal (or maybe that Big Dream) that you have always wanted to make happen, having a coach might be just the thing to finally get you there.
How do you start your day? Do you wake up refreshed from a good night’s sleep? Do you stay in bed until the last possible minute and then get up in a rush to get yourself (and everyone else) out the door? Do you make time for a nourishing breakfast that will give you the energy you need to get you through to the lunch hour? Do you start your day with exercise? What about taking a few minutes to connect with your loved ones – or yourself – before you start out?
How we start our day can make a significant difference in how the rest of the day goes. Everyone has those days where they start out feeling stressed or rushed, and things just don’t seem to go smoothly from there. The days that start out when you are feeling rested, collected, nourished – those days seem to invariably go better, and we are better at handling unexpected situations that come up.
So how can we start our day so as to make the most of it? Here are a few ideas:
- Go to sleep earlier and get up 15 minutes early to give yourself time to ease into the day. Take a few minutes to read a page from an inspirational book, or to write in a journal. Go outdoors for a few minutes to meditate and connect with nature. If you have a spiritual practice, this is the perfect time for it. The point is to get centered and start your day with ease, rather than hurry. Begin your day with intention.
- Exercise, outdoors if possible. Go for a walk or a run while all is still quiet. Our energy levels are higher in the morning, and your good feelings and sense of accomplishment will last all day.
- Have a to-do list. When you have a plan for your day, you feel more organized and collected starting out, and that sense of order sets the tone for the day.
- Plan or lay out your clothes the night before. You will eliminate last-minute dilemmas when you can’t find the jacket that goes with your outfit (it’s at the cleaners…..) Take time to look your best – you will feel more confident throughout the day.
- Connect with those you care for. Kiss your husband or wife, hug your kids, say I love you. Supportive connections with others is one of the most important components in maintaining a sense of wellbeing.
Begin your day mindfully, with intention, and you may find yourself experiencing more happiness, and less hassle.
Here is a favorite quote of mine to inspire you: “Life is a work of art designed by the one who lives it.” Chris Peterson
Today’s world is a digital world, a world powered by technology. Use of personal home computers, once a far-off dream, is now commonplace. Much of life is now conducted online via the Internet. Your computer crashing can have a huge impact on both your home life and work. Add to that I-pads, Smartphones, Blackberries, instant messages, texts, and we need never be out of touch. And if you’re not online, in today’s society, it seems you can’t possibly be in touch.
Technology has opened up a completely new world over the last fifteen years or so. I remember having a conversation with someone around the millennium who told me he planned never to be online, and felt that to give in would be to give away his right not to participate in the Internet age and, as he put it, “being forced to use computers.” I sometimes think about that conversation and wonder if he finally caved in. It would be hard, just from a practical standpoint, not to. The Internet has opened new channels of information, communication and convenience that can’t be denied. It’s interesting to me, however, that when I talk to people about what is going on with them, many report they are busier and have less free time than ever. A recurring theme seems to be managing technology. For many, it ends up being a struggle and it seem hard to disconnect. A recent article in Newsweek magazine (July 2012) cites a survey that fully one-third of smartphone users go online before getting out of bed. It makes me wonder: What is that important? That same article goes on to discuss how the newly revised DSM (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual) will, for the first time, include Internet Addiction Disorder when it is released in 2013. In some countries, notably China and Korea, internet addiction is now being treated as a serious public health crisis.
Another recent article in The Atlantic (May 2012), asks “Is Facebook Making Us Lonely?” It goes on to discuss how, despite the prevalence of opportunities for connection via social media, over 25 percent of Americans surveyed in 2004 reported having no one with whom to discuss important matters in their life. It talks about an “epidemic” of loneliness in our culture. It seems that, despite so much opportunity for connection, people are feeling more disconnected than ever.
It seems that we often don’t feel a sense of control over the time we spend in front of our computers. And I think that is important – knowing that we have a choice in how we manage technology instead of feeling managed by it. I believe that is key in this new world – making sure we deal with technology in a way that works for us, not the other way around. So how can we do that?
Here are some ideas:
- Time spent dealing with email consistently tops the list of time-wasting activities. Each time that you stop to check email creates a pattern of distraction which then prompts the need to re-focus on the initial task. What ends up happening is constant interruption to the task at hand. Most emails are not urgent and unless you are expecting an important one, schedule your time to check email. A suggestion would be three times daily – morning, after lunch, and before the end of the day. Apply the same idea to your cell phone – voicemail and texts..
- If you have a home office, do your morning routine first, then check email. This means you wake up, go for a run or stretch, shower, and have breakfast, then check email when you are ready to start your day. Again, it’s about distractions. You check your email, send off a response or two, then you see an interesting article, might as well check Facebook……you get the idea.
- Don’t read and send work emails after work hours, or on weekends. If you must read and respond to some of business emails at these times, schedule delivery for the next business day. This accomplishes two things: you enforce your guideline that you are not available after hours, and you avoid back-and-forth exchanges after hours.
- Observe National Unplug Day (March 20) or create your own day once a week – unplug, get outdoors, hang with your family, read under a tree. Connect with yourself and what you value.
- For families with children, make the dinner table a No-Phone (and no computer game) Zone. (Attention Mom and Dad: This applies to you, too.) Have rules about how much video game time is allowed , and stick to them.
- Be sure to make time for in-person connections with those you value. One of the drawbacks to connecting through social media over time is a lack of intimacy with others. A computer is, in the end, only a machine. Nothing can replace a real person. .
- Some people establish clear boundaries for themselves, rules if you will. An example would be not checking email during times with your spouse or children, or after 8:00 p.m. Be mindful of what works for you. Pay attention if you find yourself feeling stressed about the amount of time you have been at your computer, and take breaks. Turn your cellphone off when you are working on a project, so that you aren’t distracted by calls or texts.
- If some forms of communication aren’t your cup of tea, don’t engage in them. You don’t have to text if you don’t like texting. (You can actually say, “I don’t text.” Really. ) If you would rather hear someone’s voice, pick up the phone and call them instead of emailing. You have choices about how much you engage with technology. Again, decide what works for you and stick to that.
I think that last point is important. Technology is not going away, and we have to find a way to deal with it so that it works for us. It’s a great tool when we are in charge. I think part of this is stepping back and reminding ourselves: Technology is here for our convenience. If the way you engage with technology is enhancing your life and well-being, great. Keep doing what you’re doing. If it isn’t, take a look and see what changes you might need to make. Establish some guidelines that work for you, and stay with them. And remember who’s in charge of your time.
Fruits are a delicious basic when it comes to healthy eating – with nutrients vital for health, energy, disease prevention and longevity. Here in Colorado, fall is when peaches are at their peak. Apples, too, are at their best this time of year, and there is a wide variety to choose from. (Over 7,500 varieties worldwide!) The most common in North America are Red Delicious, Golden Delicious, Gala, Fuji, Braeburn, Granny Smith, MacIntosh, and tmany more. Try a variety of fruits, but be sure to include some in your grocery shopping list. They are a great addition to kids’ lunches, or yours, and a perfect snack anytime for everyone in your family.
I believe in always having fresh fruit on hand. It’s a staple at our house. Do you eat at least 5 servings of fruits and vegetables every day? This is the most recent nutritional recommendation from the U.S. Government’s Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Recent research indicates that people who eat a diet rich in fruits and vegetables have lower rates of cancer, cardiovascular disease, heart attack and stroke. Fruits and vegetables are high in vitamins and minerals, and may also help you manage your weight. Here are a few ways for you to enjoy whatever fruit is in season for you.
- Fruit Salad – Choose your favorite fruits, and pick the best available. Some ideas: cut cantaloupe and honeydew, sliced strawberries, blueberries, pineapple chunks, seedless green or red grapes, sliced peaches. I sometimes will use sliced bananas and apples, but add these close to serving time to maintain freshness. You can also add in some raisins and chopped walnuts or pecans for extra texture and flavor. This fruit salad is delicious any time, and makes a great lunch topped with vanilla yogurt.
- Smoothies – This is the breakfast of choice most weekdays at our house. Toss in any kind of frozen fruit – you can slice and freeze bananas, strawberries, blueberries, peaches, whatever you like. You can also buy freezer bags of fresh frozen fruit, if you prefer. To that, add a scoop of vanilla protein powder, vanilla soy milk or almond milk, and/or fruit juice, and whirl together in a blender. This is a delicious and nutrition-packed way to start the day and keep you going until lunch time.
- Snacks – Snacking on fruit is a healthy choice when it comes to high nutritional content without adding empty calories. Fruits provide us with natural sugars, which can give us a boost if we are feeling low on energy. Berries – blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, blackberries – are filled with antioxidants and vitamins. Citrus fruits are another great source of vitamins, minerals and fiber. Apples and pears are also excellent snacks, providing healthy fiber, with low sugar content. Browse your local produce stand or farmer’s market for your favorites.