Sunday, October 28, 2007

The road to Feeling Good

Something to Do, Something to Eat, Something to Drink, Someone to Love you

October has been a busy month for me, culminating with Halloween preparations, mid-term exams and work related activities. It’s probably as good a time as any to start thinking about breaking out of the bad habits that I’ve developed over the past several months and start shedding the excess weight before the arrival of Christmas and all the goodies that come with it. So here is part one of a Feel Good guide excerpted from the Sunday Times on how to free up our minds, think positively, eat properly and exercise for energy.

It’s time to Refocus. Just as you chuck out the mouldy carrots that fester in the recesses of your fridge, you should occasionally declutter your thoughts and seek out new ingredients for a more vital life. You need to understand what makes you leap out of bed in the morning. What subjects heighten your senses, who inspires you and what motivates you to be the best that you can be. It is only by deciding what your priorities are that you can discover a renewed sense of purpose.

Set aside a fixed time to achieve a task and just do it. If this involves wearing a Do Not Disturb hat, then so be it. Take that thing you’ve been putting off for ages, grab a stopwatch and give it 10 minutes. When the alarm goes off, stop. Just starting will go a long way toward making it happen, and you’ll probably find it wasn’t so bad after all.
Become an eternal optimist and you won’t just think you’re better off, you actually will be. So says psychologist Martin Seligman, who has demonstrated that mildly deluded optimists have more successful careers, live to a ripe old age, attract more friends and have more fun. Be open to as many new experiences as you can, from painting to paragliding, sailing to singing. Choose Nigerian cinema instead of your usual blockbuster selections.

We all feel good about ourselves when we’re doing something we’re good at. The protagonist in the film Being John Malkovich used his nimble puppeteer fingers to become the speediest filing clerk. Where can you use the skills you already have to the best advantage in other areas of your life?
Setting yourself realistic goals that challenge and excite can help you to find your “flow” or your “groove”. Remember that film, How Stella Found her Groove? Anything that is too hard or too easy won’t get you there. To increase motivation, share your goal with others, make sure there are as many benefits as possible and keep the payoff tangible and specific.

Keep adding to the pool of positive people who inspire and excite you. Don’t ditch your old and loyal friends, just keep your group fresh. Get to know the people around you, organise a party with colleagues or do an evening class. Simply start saying “yes” when people suggest new things. The more people you know, the more people you’ll meet and the more possibilities will present themselves.

Understand the culture in which you live, begin to comprehend the impact it has and use this knowledge to rejuvenate your own life and be the change you want to see in the world. What gets you up in the morning today may feel very different in the next three months. Keep experimenting by chopping and changing the ingredients in your life and as you spice up the recipe, your morning leap will follow suit. Remember to have a fabulous time while doing all of the above! E

Monday, October 15, 2007

Belizegial's Health Tip

Good morning Everyone,
According to a recent piece in The New Yorker by the physician-journalist Atul Gawande, if you want to have better quality of life as you age, these three things will have a dramatic effect:

1. Practice yoga or any form of exercise that will help your balance
2. Try to limit your prescription medicines to no more than four
3. Lift weights

And why these three? The single most serious physical risk that the elderly face is an injury from falling. According to Gawande's piece, "Each year, about three hundred and fifty thousand Americans fall and break a hip. Of those, forty per cent end up in a nursing home, and twenty per cent are never able to walk again. The three primary risk factors for falling are poor balance, taking more than four prescription medications, and muscle weakness."

Thanks for visiting here and have a splendiferous and healthy week ahead.