Pain Relief from Kindness and Laughter

 

 

Kindness & (1)-78834


Have you ever suffered from searing pain that…

  • drained the blood from your body and almost made you pass out?
  • kept you up all night?
  • made you feel depressed, hopeless, and scared that it will never get better?

It was exactly this time of the year last year that I was living in this nightmare. A year ago, I couldn’t walk without being in excruciating pain. Simple activities such as sitting, standing, and sleeping made me anxious and worried from the unexpected shooting pain. Both unfortunately and fortunately this painful episode lasted for about one month. While it was unfortunate that I experienced intense pain, it was fortunate that I saw a glimpse of what life was like for people living with chronic pain and importantly able to see firsthand the healing power of two unlikely techniques— an act of kindness and an act of laughter.


Dismal with Disability

What led to my temporary disability is still unknown to me.  I was in great shape last year! I had a personal trainer and worked hard at keeping my weight within a reasonable range. I felt good about myself, I had great energy, and I enjoyed seeing my favorite clothes falling nicely in areas that they were supposed to. To this day, I cannot pinpoint the very moment when it started. Over and over I asked myself.

Was it working out too hard and not stretching long enough?

Was it the way I slept?

Was it my new high heels I wore to match my holiday dress?

 Who knows? All I know was I was in pain and I felt miserable!


The Pain

I always took pride in having a high tolerance for pain but this one was nothing like I’ve ever experienced. I thought I knew what pain was. I’ve had plantar fasciitis on both feet as I worked 12 hour shifts as a nurse. I’ve had shooting sciatica pain from my pregnancies that would have me gripping the furniture or walls around me so I didn’t fall down. Lastly, I endured natural deliveries twice because my childbirth labor always came fast. But this holiday pain felt like a perfect storm of angry sciatica pain, tight hamstring muscles and back pain. The jolt of spasm would catch me so unexpectedly that I would gasp with pain and feel cold, sweaty, and pale from a head rush of blood, making me feel as though I was going to pass out.


Natural Cures

Although I am a nurse, I always went for natural cures before going to the doctors. Years of learning over a dozen proven Complementary Alternative Medicine techniques and Positive Psychology provided me with an array of modalities and techniques to try. I tried everything I had in my natural tool-box such as: Reiki, hot and cold compresses, muscle rubs, homeopathy, and magnets. I went for weekly chiropractic adjustments and deep tissue massages. Little by little I started to feel better but my recovery didn’t start to sky rocket until I did something different. That something different was doing something for someone else. I found that doing something good for someone else help me stop ruminating on my self-pity and suffering. It helped me think of someone else who I cared about and this made me feel better and better.


Doing Good to Feel Good

One day during my one of my more painful afternoons, I decided to do something to get my mind off my pain. I decided to contact an old friend, who had been going through a divorce. Because we had not been in contact for awhile I wasn’t sure how he was doing. When I did reach him, I told him that I was going to give him a special present that I called “7 Days of Cheer.” I explained to him that I was going to send him one pun per day for a week. Knowing that he was very busy, sending him daily puns was a great way for him to know I was thinking him and wishing him well. He agreed to play along and I started. Every day, I looked for puns that I loved; ones that made me laugh so hard that I couldn’t wait but send to him. The puns were silly but hilarious.


Happy Inside and Out

I loved reading the puns during the day because they made me feel happy inside and out. This new found idea was exciting and made me feel good. Each day I looked forward to finding just the perfect pun to send him. The more I sent him, the more I noticed I felt better and better. I noticed something profound that I had been teaching all along in my stress management and wellness workshops for busy professionals.  I noticed that doing kind deeds for someone else does boost your own happiness, decrease feelings of depression, and reduces pain levels.  Further, I noticed the very same thing with laughter as well. As a laughter yoga teacher for professionals, seniors, and cancer survivors, I knew that laughter also provides the same positive benefits. I was amazed at how laughing and doing kind deeds helped reduce my pain.

HotDog

Positivity for Pain Relief

Acts of kindness and laughter, although a very unlikely pairing, provide powerful doses of positivity that are sure to help with pain relief. Our natural pain killer hormones called endorphins are secreted within our brain and nervous system when acts of kindness  are done and with deep hearty laughter. Endorphins, our bodies’ natural pain killers, are similar to morphine that is prescribed by doctors for severe pain. What seemed like a great idea to distract me from pain while cheering up a good friend, quickly became a main source of pain relief. It was as if my inner physician knew what I needed to help me feel better, and I am grateful that I listened to her. It was no surprised that his 7-day gift became a 14-day gift. Not only did my friend enjoy my gift, I was able to experience the pain relief that both kindness and laughter had to offer. It was a holiday that I will always remember.


More on Kindness and Laughter

Both acts of kindness and laughter have much in common. They are known to:

  • decrease pain
  • boost levels of happiness
  • decrease levels of anxiety
  • lead to faster healing


Gifting the “7 Days of Cheer”

Are you or someone you know suffering from any sort of physical, mental, or emotional pain?

Would you like to try something that doesn’t cost anything except your time and energy to feel better?

Are you interested in applying simple techniques that can make you feel better whether or not you are suffering from pain?

I invite you to try the “7 Days of Cheer” with anyone of your family or friends. It’s a fun and unique way to feel good as you do something good for someone. It’s truly a gift that keeps on giving.

Here’s how you can start.

  1. Pick a family member or friend that you want to give a special gift to.
  2. Contact that person and let him or her know about what you want to do.
  3. Decide on the length of time you want to do it.
  4. Use the internet for funny images, quotes, or video clips.
  5. Begin.
  6. Notice how you feel.
  7. Repeat as necessary.
  8. Have fun.

Next time you feel miserable from physical, mental, or emotional pain try taking care of it by doing something positive for someone else. It will help you to put a stop to focusing on what feels bad and instead direct you towards what feels good. Remember that your body has the capacity to help you feel better by releasing natural feel-good hormones.

Got other natural and proven ways to reduce pain? Please comment below and share it with us.

Let’s get physical

 

Healthy and Happy March to you!

I don’t know about you but I am so excited that this new month has finally arrived. It’s been such a cold and snowy winter in the Boston area that it seems like everyone, including me, has gotten “cabin fever.” It really made me appreciate the warmth of the sun and being outside for just a few minutes so I could clear my winter blues away.

Physical activity can boost our mood

Did you know that experts say that doing any physical activity can actually help boost your mood? It’s true and it does work. Every time I would start feeling low or down, I would start doing a physical activity such as de-cluttering my workspace, walking to the post office, or even walking on the beach. Of course your physical activity (notice I am not saying the “e” word that ends with “cise”) will depend on your health and activity tolerance.

An inspiration

I coached a group from the Boston Senior Home Care’s Stronger for Life Program recently and they were a wonderful inspiration to me! They are so determined to reach their goals to lose weight and to increase their endurance. They do their physical routine in their apartments, hallways, and stairs. They did not let the cold harsh winter ruin their goals of becoming stronger for life.

What an inspiration they were!

As for me, walking around my neighborhood, shoveling, making snowmen has become my winter sport. I’ve also found snowshoeing to be a wonderful way of getting out and having fun in the cold weather.

Debbie snow-62596

How about you?

What have you been doing this winter to help you lift your spirits? Please share it with us. Just remember, anytime you start feeling the blues coming on, it’s always best to recognize it so that you can make the choice to shift from that state to be better one. What better way to make a positive shift than to start getting…physical. Have fun!

Need coaching?

Have you been feeling stuck and stressed not knowing what to do to move closer to your dreams and goals?

Has there been a goal that you have been wanting to achieve but just don’t know how to start?

Are you finally ready to serve your own needs instead of others for a change?

Contact me at info@ultimatehealingjourney.com so  we can get you moving towards the direction of your dreams.

 

Thank Your Stress Away

Hello there!

Here’s a quick guide to use anytime you feel stressed throughout the day.

My mother’s recovery from her double cancer surgery inspired me to create this technique.  Two years ago—just about one month after celebrating being breast cancer free for 5 years—my mother was diagnosed with endometrial cancer and lung cancer. It was one of the worst years of my life, seeing my mother undergo so much physical and emotional stress from her diagnosis and myriad of hospital tests and surgeries.

As a nurse, I knew how extensive and painful her surgeries were going to be. As a daughter, I was afraid of losing my mother and worried about my father who always relied on my mother. While I did my best to be supportive and strong, “the nurse,” for the rest of my family and relatives, I had moments where I would just break down and cry. Ironically, that year the source of my strength, besides God, was my mother. I felt so much better every time I saw my mother. I recall how she would laugh at herself when her hair was growing back and I remember the countless of times I heard my mother say “thank you.” One of the most memorable times that we as a family said “thank you” was when she got the results from her endometrial, lung, and thyroid biopsy (yup, they found a suspicious area there too) that all of her cancers were not related. This meant that they were not a metastasis from her breast cancer.

During each of her surgeries that summer, I would hear her say, “thank you” when she woke up and was able to get up from her bed by herself. She would say “thank you” when she would have enough strength to walk from her bed to the bathroom all by herself. She would say “thank you” when she had a restful night of sleep without bone pain that was caused from her chemotherapy. Her days were (and still are) filled with thankful moments from morning to night. She uses gratitude to fuel every action and every thought.

My mother naturally used gratitude as a way to become resilient and to thrive after that long, hard summer.

Next time you feel stressed or scared, try this technique that I call, Thank Your Stress Away.

thankyourstressaway

I hope you enjoyed this technique. Please share it with friends who might benefit from it.

Need extra support in managing your work-life stress? Contact me at info@ultimatehealingjourney.com.

Cheers!

Debbie signature

Time Leadership

Here’s a wonderful quote that made me stop and remember how I used to run around during the day feeling overwhelmed by the overly busy schedule that I had created for myself.

“To be everywhere is to be nowhere.” -Seneca

What I’ve discovered and learned (the hard way) is that being busy has a lot to do with my state of mind and my perceived obligations. These supposed responsibilities grew worse when I felt tired or insecure about what was going on at the time. What would tend to happen was that I would either mindlessly take on more to compensate for how I felt, or I would challenge myself (in a form of punishment) to go the extra mile to prove that I was as good, if not better, than the next person.
It was a mentality that eventually became a habit for me and manifested in an unhealthy physical, mental, and emotional state of being. This self-defeating habit made me gain more weight than I cared to imagine, made me take sleeping medications to help quite my mind in order to sleep, and made me have panic attacks that would momentarily distress me.
I realized that I had to change my way of thinking and start taking care of myself in order to get things done more efficiently. I took on a Time Leadership mentality that changed everything for me.

What is Time Leadership?

Time Leadership is purposely taking ownership of the time you spend doing that which feeds and fuels your inner spirit. It becomes the very essence of which you do any business so that your day is filled mindfully with things that are in alignment with your overall personal and professional mission. Understanding this allows one to have full control over where you choose to spend your time, who you want to spend it with, and what you choose to do with it. It is feeling connected to your heart’s desires and your very own version of success. It is a way of mindfully and passionately engaging with your schedule. Different from time management, Time Leadership places you in the captain’s seat. Time management places you among the crew, running around and taking care of more than what you are supposed to do. Time leadership allows you to stay long enough in one place to reflect, reframe, and react appropriately to your day. I share this concept that empower today’s busy people to find easy ways to add themselves back into their schedules during my work-life balance programs. Basically, one can say that Time Leadership is akin to being Heart Led.

Steve Jobs

3 Time Leadership Tips

Here are 3 Time Leadership Tips is get you started:

  1. “Know thyself.” -Socrates 

Knowing your own body and stamina is one of the most important ways to gauge how to best schedule your projects and unleash your genius. If you are a morning person, try to complete all of your creative or complex tasks before noon. Socrates couldn’t have said it any clearer when he said this quote. Knowing yourself allows you to better control what you think, say, and do with your time.

  1. “Ask yourself if what you are doing today is getting you any closer to where you want to be tomorrow.” -Unknown

Inquire within! Search yourself for what is truly giving you the sense of busyness; we can easily become conditioned into a habit of saying that we are “busy” when we actually aren’t. Yes, there will always be something for us to do—that is life. But my challenge to you is to question yourself when you start saying it out loud. You might just be surprise when you ask yourself what it is that you are really busy with—it might not seem as much as you think. This practice has worked for me tremendously and helped me become more mindful when I do say it.

  1. “There is never enough time to do everything, but there is always enough time to do most of the important things.” -Brian Tracy

Priorities in life should drive us—not our pains. Time leadership means knowing not only yourself but also what makes you happy. Next time you plan out your schedule, try adding something in there that makes you feel good and is important to you. It can be as small as taking a 15-minute walk outside or a power nap. This small addition can help you ease back into your busy schedule in a realistic way.
As you can tell by now, Time Leadership begins with you. It starts with how much you know about yourself and grows from the ways that you purposely add yourself to your schedule. Remember, as the captain of your own ship, you—and only you—navigate your work / life by following your own stars.

 

Many Famous People Use It

Did you know that Homeopathy is considered to be the fastest growing system of medicine in the world?

In this day and age where natural healing modalities are becoming widely accepted, I am hearing more and more people asking about homeopathy and what it is. Homeopathy seems to be becoming a “fad” word in the health and wellness world and I believe it deserves some attention to educate the public.

As a graduate student of the Teleosis School of Homeopathy in Cambridge, MA., I have come to respect the power of this medicine from 4 years of studying various case studies of people overcoming mental-emotional and even physical disabilities and ailments from the use of the right homeopathic remedy. Homeopathy has become such an important part of my life that I never leave home without it. I am a firm believer in its effectiveness to help people feel better.

As mentioned in my newsletter a few years ago when my oldest son went away to college, I gave him his very own homeopathic first aid kit. I rejoiced when he would call and tell me that he is recovering from a cold or flu after taking the remedies I instructed him to take in his kit. I have given homeopathy to my husband after he slammed the garage door on one of his fingers one summer right before leaving for our family vacation. Minutes after taking the remedy, we were on our way to our family vacation without so much as an inkling of pain from him. I have given a remedy to my one of the painters that was working on my house (with his permission of course) who was suffering from food poisoning that resulted in his co-worker being hospitalized from dehydration and discomfort. Within minutes of taking the remedy, my painter was whistling Dixie from feeling better. I have taken remedies for days when I feel so exhausted that I can’t think straight. There are so many uses for the right homeopathic remedy that the possibilities are endless. Of course, one must understand that only a trained practitioner will know what the right remedy is and that is why people are encouraged to seek treatment from a professional homeopath in order to gain the healing and relief that they seek.

homeopathy

What is homeopathy?

Here is a definition of homeopathy according to Merriam Webster Dictionary.
ho·me·op·a·thy
: a system for treating illnesses that uses very small amounts of the substances that would, in larger amounts, produce symptoms of the illnesses in healthy people

Homeopathy was discovered by Dr. Samuel Hahnemann in the late 1700’s. He based this form of natural and vibrational medicine on treating “like with like.” This theory is based on an idea that a condition can be cured by a substance that produces the same signs and symptoms in a healthy person. Further, from his studies and experiments, he found that a highly diluted form of a natural substance can become more potent and effective. The dilution process is repeated so many times that one will no longer be able to detect the chemical properties of the original substance under a microscope. In fact what is left is the energetic property of that substance. Homeopathy treats according to the presenting symptoms and not the name of the disease or ailments.

Don’t call it alternative medicine in Europe!

Homeopathy is so widely accepted and used in Europe that for it to be called an Alternative Medicine can be insulting to some Europeans. This form of medicine is an integral part of European mainstream medicine. There are homeopathy clinics that sells homeopathy to the public and the practicing physicians. The British Royal Family has used and supported homeopathy since the 1830s. Homeopathy has a longstanding presence in Britain’s national health care system. In the past there were 22 homeopathic medical schools in the US, including Boston University, University of Michigan, New York Medical College just to name a few.

It’s been proven to work.

There is research data that supports the efficacy of this medicine. It’s been proven to be effective in treating infections, wound healing, hay fever, rheumatoid discomfort, mental or psychological disorders, and digestive system ailments. More information can be read in The British Medical Journal**.

Many famous people use it.

Here is the list of famous people who benefited from homeopathy:
Louisa May Alcott, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Henry David Thoreau, and Harriett Beecher Stowe, Gandhi, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Pamela Anderson, Paul McCartney, Tina Turner, Cher, Cindy Crawford, etc.

Who can use it?

Under the treatment of a trained practitioner, Homeopathy is said to be very safe and effective for anyone. Infants, elderly people, people with ailments, pregnant women, etc. have benefited from homeopathy.

What does it look like?
Homeopathic remedies come in lactose white round pellets or pastille from manufacturers. It can also be prepared by the homeopath or the clinic in a liquid form. Regardless of how it is provided, always read the directions, do your research, and consult with a professional before taking it.

Next time you walk down the organic section of your local grocery take a look at the health and wellness section and see just how many homeopathic remedies or medicines are being sold. If you have any questions about the remedy seek the help of your local homeopath to gain the best guidance and treatment.

I hope this newsletter has helped you learned a little about homeopathy and its potential to cure an ailment.

*Disclaimer: This newsletter is not meant to replace medical treatment or a prescription for you to start using homeopathy. You are always encouraged to seek professional advice and care before using any of these homeopathic remedies.
** J. Kleijnen, P. Knipschild, G. ter Riet, “Clinical Trials of Homoeopathy,” British Medical Journal, February 9, 1991, 302:316-323.

Balancing Your Work and Home Life: Achieving Higher Enlightenment

WorkLifeMaze

If you suffer from stress, depression, anxiety or even high blood pressure, then you will understand the importance of just being able to relax. Many people try to multi-task too much in their daily lives, thinking that they can achieve more by doing so. This simply isn’t the case and multi-tasking often leads to errors which take even more time to correct. This makes us frustrated and angry, which is often taken out on family and friends. By taking the time to relax for just a few minutes, we realize that our lives don’t revolve around how many things we can do per day, and that by simply concentrating on one thing at once, we can achieve more than we ever thought possible.

Acting Out Of Character

Stress can certainly make us act out of character, especially when you’re stressed because you can’t perform an action on time or at the same time as something else. Your child may interrupt you to ask a question, to which you shout in response. This creates a negative atmosphere for everyone.

Creating a Better Balance

If you want to create a better work-home balance, take a step back and analyze the things you need to do that day. For example, if you need to do the washing and take the kids to school, find a way that you can do both without necessarily multi-tasking.  Start off the washing machine before you go in the morning, and dry them when you get back from your commute. You will have time by yourself to do the washing properly and in good time, and you will also have time to relax between loads. You’ll be doing one thing at a time, but you’ll still get the same amount done per day. This can really make a difference to your life, and by not multi-tasking. You’ll find that you won’t get as stressed, meaning that you can achieve more per day!

Can you think of some simple steps right now that you can do to create more balance in your life? Start with that first thing that you think of.

If can’t think of any right now, here are 3 tips to get you started.

They are:

  1. Divide and conquer- Delegate the tasks that others can do for you. Remember that you are not alone. Decide on one or two tasks that others can do easily and do not require your immediate attention. According to the July 26, 2012 Harvard Business Review, article written by Amy Gallo called, “Why aren’t you delegating” even though delegating tasks is an important skill for leaders and managers, not everyone is doing it—it is underutilized. While most feel they are too busy to ask, some are not trained to think and ask the right questions to ask for help.
  2. Go the distance- Deliberately go out of your way. Many people who are too busy during the day with work and life are way too busy to exercise. The best way to get in some physical activities is by going out of your way. Purposely park in the far end corner of the parking lot and walk or use the stairs instead of the elevators. According to an article called “Exercise and Stress. Get Moving to Manage Stress” by the Mayo Clinic, any form of physical activity can help reduce stress. This reduction is caused by the release of hormone called endorphin. The very hormone that gets released when runners experience the “runner’s high” when running.
  3. Distraction- Clear off your desk, your inbox, or even the noise around you. Distraction leads to wasted time trying to get back on task which can create more feelings of stress, overwhelm and imbalance. According the June 22, 2008 New York Times article, “Fighting a War Against Distraction,” it takes almost 20 minutes to get back on track after being distracted for one minute.

Just know that it is very possible to add more balance in your life. If you need support and coaching on ways to gain more balance in your work-life, contact me at info@ultimatehealingjourney.com for ways we can work together.

Effective Cold & Flu Home Remedies

Did you know that according to statistics the average person will catch anywhere between two to four colds this winter?

It’s that time again here in the New England where the Fall foliage is peaking and the temperatures are dropping. While I do love this time of the year, because of the picturesque Fall foliage and the smell of wood burning, it does make me want to prepare myself and my family for the winter associated ailments like the cold and flu.

One of the best reassuring statements that I heard my son’s pediatrician say to me the other day when I brought my 9 year old son in to be evaluated for his chest congestion and questionable wheezing was:

“No, his lungs are clear and he doesn’t need any medications. Keep on doing what you are doing because it obviously is working.”

After I told him of the natural cures and homeopathic remedies that I was giving to my son, he said confidently to keep it up. I did reassure him that I know about homeopathic remedies because I studied it for 5 years and graduated in from the Teleosis School of Homeopathy in Cambridge, MA.

For the sake of today’s topic, I will focus more on my most popular “go-to” natural cures that I use once I suspect a change in my health or my family’s. Next month, I will talk about homeopathy and my 3 favorite remedies that I always carry as my 1st aid remedy.

As soon as I start detecting that my body is feeling extra fatigue, my nose is getting stuffy, and I am colder than usual my mind starts running it’s very own medical evaluation. I believe that immediate response to wellness increases the body’s ability to get better sooner rather than later when the condition has worsened.

The questions I typically ask myself are:

“Am I coming down with something or am I just run down?”
“Does anyone at home or at work have these symptoms?”
“What can I do now that can help?”
“What do I have at home that can make me feel better?”

Ginger Lemon with Honey

Once I determine that I am coming down with something I go in my natural cures mode that I call, 4 D’s to Fortify.

The 4 D’s stand for: disinfect, drink, dietary, and dream.

1. “Water, air, and cleanliness are the chief articles in my pharmacopoeia.” Napoleon

Disinfect: I replace my toothbrush and disinfect my bathrooms, change all the towels, disinfect the hand rails, door knobs, kitchen eating area, replace all the kitchen towels and dish sponge. I also disinfect the electrical and computer devices such as light switches, TV remote, telephone, cell phones, and computer keys. Basically, I go on a “germ quest” and think about the most commonly touched areas of the house. I do this to cease and contain the germs from spreading to my family. If you don’t have a spare toothbrush, take your current one and soak it in salt water to allow the antiseptic qualities of the salt to cleanse the bristles of your toothbrush.

2. “True healthcare reform starts in your kitchen, not in Washington.” Anonymous

Drink: I get the pot of hot water going and drink ginger tea with honey. Ginger is a great warming root and helps with congestion. It’s also great for an upset stomach, nausea, vomiting, or dizziness. Ginger helps with detoxification of the body; it helps the body sweat and release toxins. Honey on the other hand is a wonderful sweetener and has many antiseptic and soothing qualities such as being a natural cough suppressant. Honey, especially locally harvested, is great for seasonal allergies, coughs and sore throat. If you can tolerate the taste of the real thing, get a fresh ginger root from your grocery store and cut up approximately 1 inch of the root and set it to a boil on your stove. You can drink this all day and it will help loosen congestion and warm up your bones on a cold day. If you are a diabetic, please avoid using honey and use your preferred no-sugar sweetener.

3. “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.”  Hippocrates

Dietary: Chicken soup, need I say more? But really, there is something about chicken soup that is soothing when we are feeling a little under the weather. It is both fluid for hydration and food for nourishment. It is perfect when you have little appetite from not feeling well. If you don’t have someone around to whip up a nice pot of chicken soup for you then here’s a delicious semi-home made trick to make a delicious chicken soup. Buy an already cooked rotisserie chicken from your local grocery store and bring to boil and simmer for 1 – 2 hours. Add chicken stock or chicken base to it to taste. Add 2 sticks of carrots cut into cubes, 1 celery stalk chopped, and 1 medium size onion chopped. Add whatever pasta or rice that you might have around then salt and pepper to taste. Enjoy! Try adding some lemon with your chicken soup next time to really kick up the healing qualities and flavor of the soup. Lemon is another one of nature’s healthy foods that is loaded with Vitamin C, it is a wonderful antioxidant. If you made too much soup take the extras and freeze them.

4. “A man too busy to take care of his health is like a mechanic too busy to take care of his tools.”  Spanish Proverb

Dream: In order for our wonderful human body to recharge and replenish itself we need sleep. This is one of the most important things that we can give ourselves in order to reach optimum health. Take naps when you can during the day. Listen to your body. If you are at home and feel tired lay down and rest. This is the best time to be gentle to yourself. Trust that the time you invest in yourself will help you bounce back quicker. If you are too busy to take care of yourself your sick body will find a way to stop you and put you in bed one way or another. It is always best to do it at the start of an illness in order to allow the body to do what it needs to do for you.

I hope that you have found these natural cures helpful. I invite you to try one or two of them that you feel might be reasonable. Please note that the techniques and cures that I just mentioned are also great for when you are feeling healthy. I agree with Benjamin Franklin when he said, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” Prevention is important.

If you have natural cures that have worked for you in the past please email them to me. I’ll be sure to add it to the next newsletter so others may benefit from them as well. Until then, I wish you a healthy and happy day.

Disclaimer: The above natural cures are not a replacement for your existing medical treatment. Always consult with your doctor regarding any changes to your medical care. These natural cures are not a prescription but a suggestion. For any questions regarding the effectiveness of these natural cures please perform your own educational research and bring your questions to your physician to see if they are contraindicated to your medical condition. The sole purpose of these tips is to bring awareness of the many simple and natural ways to reach optimum mind-body-spirit wellness.

If you or someone you know needs support or coaching in ways to become healthier and happier, please contact us at info@ultimatehealingjourney.com or visit our website www.ultimatehealingjourney.com to learn more about ways we can help you sustain you level of happiness.

Happiness

WomanInGrass

As a Health & Happiness Specialist™ I often get people coming up to me after my programs asking the same question over and over again .

“What do I do to be so happy?”

With a look of desperation, they ask me how is it possible for them to be happy, especially when there are so many negative people around them complaining or judging all the time.
I love this question because from years of trial and error, of making big and little choices, I know that happiness is a journey, it’s a conscious way of living and expressing your inner truth—freely and faithfully. My answer to this loaded question usually starts with a smile on my face, followed by a deep breath, and a sentence that starts with …”Well…” then another deep breath… and the rest of the sentence sounds like …”it’s a daily practice, a change in habit, a new way of seeing life. It boils down to the millions of little choices that we make along the way to dedicate to that practice.” I would sometimes receive a perplexed look on their faces with a “what are you talking about?” look, but other times I get asked more questions such as, “Yeah, but how can I do that knowing the people around me are not happy?” or “What can I do right now to start?” or “How can you help me?”. The simple answer to that begins with choices: the choices that we make, the choices that we are willing to abide by, and the choices that are willing to live and die for.

Our choices are the secret to happiness.

The “pursuit of happiness” is a choice and once you put your foot down, you literally create a magical path that will unfold before you. Being happy and being able to sustain it is a choice that carries with it tremendous responsibilities, reflections, and realization. When one chooses to be on this fantastic road, one has to be courageous, compassionate, and careful. Depending on the company that you keep, being happy can make you either accepted or isolated. Happiness is not something to take lightly, it’s something to hold so dearly that you are willing to do whatever it takes to experience and express it. Choice is one of the most forgotten secrets to happiness. Without choice there is no movement. Choice is the initial push that will pave the road to the desired destination.

Courage to let your happy self shine.

“Stick to your guns!”

Happiness requires courage because it’s a combination of many acts of authenticity, wonderment, empowerment, self-compassion, optimism, mindfulness, and enjoyment. Happiness is the fullest expression of who you are to everyone around you, and this state of being may or may not be welcomed depending on the group you are with. One has to “stick to their guns” in order to be in their own joyful state. In other words, it takes a great deal of courage to let your happy self shine in a room full of darkness. Happy seekers must learn to keep their mind-body-spirit intact in order to maintain their happy bubble from others who are quick to “burst” it. In fact, you will stick out like a “sore thumb” because there are many people who are in deep pain and do not know how to release it other than creating pain for others. It takes courage to be happy but it’s worth it. It’s worth it because it gives others the permission to be happy or at least find support in it.

Compassionate towards yourself, then others.

“Put the mask on yourself first, then the other.”

Happiness requires that you become compassionate towards yourself first, then others. “Put the mask on yourself first, then on others.” Stop the following: leaking all your mental-physical-emotional energies on those who will never be satisfied. Stop being the only one that takes care of things for everyone because you are a nice person and everyone is too busy to do it. Stop creating a co-dependent relationship because you think people need you and they will not survive without you. Simply stop and ask yourself if what you are doing is an unconditional act or is it an act that is conditional and will lead to resentment or irritability if you were not appreciated or acknowledged. Sometimes happiness means giving yourself “tough love” to make sure that you stay true to your promise.

Careful of the company you keep.

“You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.”

Jim Rohn’s quote above best describes this aspect of being happy. Being on the happiness journey means you need to be careful of the company that you keep—be discerning but not paranoid. That means be around like-minded people who share the same positive views without judgment. This will make you feel at home and safe to be your happy self. For some, it might be easier than others to do this, but it is possible. You can find like-minded people either around your community or online. There’s no need to feel isolated when you have the world at your finger tips.

3 R’s for Your Choice to Pursue Happiness: Responsibility, Reflection, Realization.

1. Responsibility– Know that you and you alone are responsible for you happiness. You are your own source for this and it is your responsibility to find creative ways to maintain it.
2. Reflection– Go back periodically to what went well in order to do more of it. Reflect on your growth and your goals. This is a time for refinement based on your reflections of your experiences.
3. Realization– Realize that you have the choice to decide on the “who, what, and where” that resonates with you on your happy path. On this path, you are the captain of your ship. You decide, based on this realization, who will join you and where you will go. This could mean relationships, clutter, space, job, diet, etc.

I hope you found this helpful to get you started on your path to happiness. You have what it takes to be happy. You are whole, complete, loving, and lovable. You as much as the next person is meant to be happy—no matter where you are and who you are with.
Always remember, happiness is not the destination, it’s a journey. One that will bring your more than you will ever know!
If you or someone you know needs support or coaching in ways to become happy or happier, please contact us at info@ultimatehealingjourney.com to learn about ways we can help you sustain you level of happiness.

“Choices determine the lines on our faces. Be it a frown that goes down or a wrinkle from your twinkle. Your choices create the grooves the path.” ~Debbie Lyn Toomey

Smile!


Happy September to you and yours!

It’s back to school time again here in Massachusetts. It’s a time of mixed emotions. While for most parents it’s a time of structure and routine for their family schedule, it could be a time of stress for children entering a new grade or even a new school. As a mother of 3 boys all entering their 4th years (college, high school, and elementary school) I noticed some common feelings of uncertainty and anxiety of the year ahead. It’s certainly a big year for us as a family to make sure that we are there for each other in order to help everyone take their next steps.

There’s one small thing that I did notice that helped alleviate these uneasy feelings for me as a parent and my kids in a big way, and that is a smile. Why a smile? This simple gesture was enough to make my nervous 9 year old walk faster and faster towards his 4th grade line-up on the school yard as soon as he saw his smiling friends. It was a smile that I saw in my middle son’s face, that gave me relief at the dinner table when I asked him how it felt being back at school knowing that he had an full plate of Advance Placement courses ahead of him. Lastly, it was a smile on my oldest son’s face when he was leaving to go back to college, knowing that he had to make important career decisions in the coming months.

smile baby

 

Smiling is innate in all of us. Experts have been studying this for over a decade.

Here are 3 interesting facts about smiling:
– it’s a natural gesture
– fake smiles can make us feel better
– smiling releases happy hormones

 
Smiling is natural for us. Smiling is a gesture that is innate to all of us according to experts like gynecologist Dr. Yehudi Gordon. According to Dr. Gordon, all the emotional capabilities that we will have in life are formed at birth. Dr. Stuart Campbell in 2010 took the first known 3D and 4D images of a fetus smiling in utero.

Smiling can be a body-mind technique. Amy Cuddy, a social psychologist that teaches at Harvard Business School, states that body language can govern the way we think of ourselves. We can fake it until we make it! Smiling is just one of the many gestures that we can do to create a positive outlook in our mental and emotional landscape.

Smiling releases happy hormones. Smiling sends a message to our brain to release neuropeptides that decreases stress according to Health and Wellness expert Brian Seaward Ph.D. Neuropeptides help alert our whole body when we are happy, sad, angry, excited, etc. Three of the more commonly discussed feel good neurotransmitters are dopamine, endorphins, and serotonin. Researchers Richard Lane and Lynne Nadel state these are the very hormones that get released when we smile. Moreover, not only do they relax our body but they can lower our heart rate and blood pressure. Read more on these interesting chemicals, how the help us, and so much more in the next newsletter.

As for me being a Health & Happiness Specialist™, I consider smiling as my favorite yoga power pose. I hope that the next time you find yourself nervous or anxious about any impending event in your life you remember to “turn that frown upside down” and allow your inner sunrays to shine. If you or someone you know needs support in how to add more health and happiness into your life, contact me for A.W.E.S.O.M.E™ Life coaching to help you discover sustainable ways to become your best self.

3 Easy Steps to Be Like Telfon and Let it Slide

Teflon-skillet

Hi there,

 

Debbie Lyn Toomey here, your Health & Happiness Specialist™, with a unique perspective on stress.

 

Do you tend to let stress stick to you, like Velcro, all day long, or do you tend to let it slide off your back, like Telfon, and forget about it?

 

Here is a study to help you find out more about your stress management style. It’s called The Velcro Teflon Study. This fascinating study done by Penn State University researchers viewed how people handle stress. The Velcro Teflon Study observed people’s response to stress and their health in 1995 and then again 2005. David Almeida, professor of human development and family studies at Penn State, and his team found that the stress experienced and held on to by the “Velcro” people today can help predict their state of health 10 years from now. These people are more likely to suffer pains and cardiovascular problems than the “Teflon” people who do not hold onto their stress.

 

Which one are you, Velcro or Teflon?

Velcro-or-teflon

The purpose of this article is to raise awareness in the way you handle and hang on to your stressors. *Awareness is the first step to making wise and healthy choices. If you are the Teflon, keep doing what you are doing. However, if you are the Velcro like me and have a difficult time letting go of the stress, here are 3 easy steps that I have cultivated to be like Telfon and let it slide.

 

Step 1: Belly Breath – Take deep breaths that will go all the way down to your abdomen. Notice how your belly gets bigger as you inhale. When you are ready to exhale your stomach will go back to it normal resting position. Belly breathing is one of the oldest ways to help calm the mind-body-spirit. This is my initial “go to” technique when I notice the Velcro wanting to hold on to my stressors. Then I move to step 2.

 

Step 2: Physical Activity– Start moving your body. Go for a walk, run, swim, jump, or dance. Your location will determine the kind of healthy steps you can do. If you are at work, take a quick break and go for a walk or go to the nearest stairwell and work off your steam. If you are at home, put on some feel good music and either run, jump, or dance your stress away. Allow your body to have a natural way to release the tension and the angst from the stress in a healthy way. This will help diffuse your stress.

 

Step 3: Use Your Words – Talk to someone about your feelings. Ideally, talk with the person or people that have upset you. If there is no one around that you can talk to then talk to yourself. Yes, don’t ever forget about the one of the most brilliant people in your life, YOU. Ask yourself what is really, really, really true in the situation and not what your mind thinks is going on. Another way of expression is journaling. Spill your words on to the paper. This will help you get rid of your aggravation to avoid holding on to it or letting it ruminate in your mind, which can cause you deeper and longer lasting negative health-related outcomes.

 

How about YOU?

 

Are you like a Velcro or Teflon when it comes to your stress? Let us know and “hit” reply. We would like to announce the stats in the next email.

 

Enjoy these tips to help you to be like Telfon and let it slide.

 

*These techniques are some ways help you get started in managing your stress in a positive way. If you are interested in coaching to help you gain more ways to reduce your stress and assist you in becoming more consistent with your healthy choices, contact info@ultimatehealingjourney.com to discuss ways we can work together.

 
Interested in learning more unique tips and techniques from us? For more fun, simple, and quick ideas to add more balance, health, and harmony in your day, sign up for our free one page download on called 5 Quick Steps to Efficiency & Enjoyment today.

 

The best way to show us how you like our post is to let us know. Post your comments and “share” it on FB, “tweet” it, and “subscribe” on our Health & Happiness channel on YouTube.

 

Thank you in advance!

 

Cheers,
Debbie