Resolutions.

Uncategorized

Another year another bombardment of new years resolutions. Lose weight! Eat healthier! Exercise more! Social media less! Save money! It seems as though everywhere we look we are reminded that everyone around us has these big plans to CHANGE this year. I’ll be honest, I’ve never been one for resolutions…particularly new years resolutions. I’ve always thought of them as…how do I put it, pointless? Not to be transparently blunt but I’ve held the idea that we should always be resolving ourselves, reinventing ourselves, and working towards the best version of ME. And in all seriousness, how many people ACTUALLY stick with their big new year goals? As the story goes, January 1st rolls around, we have high aspirations, maybe even hit the gym for a month or two, and by April the resolutions are out the window. Let’s be honest, half of us don’t even remember those bright eyed and busy tailed intentions we had three months before. 

As much as I’d love to bash on this lacking tradition, this year I’m thinking a little differently. I’m giving this resolution thing a shot, but not in the whole “I’m going to come up with these impractical, overly ambitious goals and forget them in three months” type of way. I’m going to set short, practical, realistic goals and take the steps necessary to ensure that I become a healthier, happier, stronger version of myself in 2019.

Before I jump into my new and improved resolutions I want to address how exactly I plan to follow through with my goals. A few steps to success, if you will. 

Start Small

Instead of coming up with a list of majorly daunting changes, focus on small, attainable goals to slowly work towards a better version of yourself. 

Write it down

Physical documentation is SO important. Even if you never look at your list again, writing it down will help to mold your goals into your mind and make them easier to remember. 

Revisit and Revise 

This might be the most important key to carrying through with our intentions. As we change and work towards achieving our goals it is important to revisit our initial intentions and make the changes necessary to ensure that we are on the right track. We might even achieve our goals faster than we think, giving us the opportunity to add new resolutions to our list. 

Ask Why

Why are you setting the goals that you’ve chosen? Are they for YOUR benefit  or for the benefit of others? Will they make you a better person mentally, physically, and spiritually? 

Keep it Simple  

Don’t set overly ambitious goals. Know your limits, where you are and where you want to be. Try to be realistic with what you can achieve and when you can achieve it. If there are major changes you want to make start with something small and take steps towards change instead of trying to change everything at once. 

Share Share Share

For some of us, it’s hard to talk about ourselves, especially the parts of us that we believe need improvement. Find someone or a group of people with whom you can share your goals. They will help to keep you accountable and saying it out loud helps us remember our intentions. 

RELAX

It doesn’t have to be all or nothing. Do what you can, but accept where you are. Don’t beat yourself up if it’s not as easy as you thought, or life gets in the way. We’re only human, remember that. 

While these are all great steps towards achieving and maintaining goals, remember you don’t need a new year, a beach vacation, a wedding, or an anticipated date to renew and reinvent yourself. We should constantly be asking ourselves what can I do better? Where am I at the moment and where do I want to be? What is holding me back? Set your mind to CHANGE, commit yourself to you and remember YOU are your best investment. 

For those who are interested or need some goal setting motivation, here are my new years resolutions for 2019:

  • Relax; I’m a type A, there is no doubt about that. I am constantly going, going, going. I love to be productive and stay busy but with that sometimes comes a price. I forget to relax, or even worse, I think I don’t need to relax. This year I want to dedicate time without distractions, without busy work. Time in which I can truly reap the benefits of pure relaxation 
  • Let the small things go; I’ll be honest. I’m a girl, I get emotional, sometimes my emotions get the best of me. This year I want to work on learning when to express emotion and when to keep it to myself. 
  • Be more giving; Remember the golden rule- “treat others how you want to be treated.” I was constantly reminded of this when I was a child, but as I get older I think sometimes we forget the basics. We get so caught up in our life, our futures, our present moment, that we forget to put others before ourselves. 
  • Find community; This is my most sought after goal on my list. It’s tough being a college student who doesn’t love to party, who rather stay in and cook, exercise, and spend long hours on the yoga mat. I’ve prided myself in being independent for as long as I can remember, but I feel that it is time for me to build deeper, more meaningful relationships.  
  • Grow in my faith; I am a christian. I believe in God, I’ve accepted Jesus as my savior, and I am always working on growing and deepening this relationship. This year I want to dive into scripture, find a supportive Christian community and truly learn to lead and love through faith.
  • Stop complaining; This one doesn’t need much of an explanation. I think we all succumb to complaining a little more often than we’d like to admit. It’s everywhere, from social media posts, to the small talk with the person in front of you at the grocery store. It seems as though we are always unsatisfied. I want to be the person pointing out the positives, bringing others up. Part of the solution instead of part of the problem. 
  • Take a chance; Part of change comes with uncertainty. It can be scary to make all these changes to yourself. You might grow out of friendships, grow into new hobbies, and become someone entirely new. There are beautiful things that come with change but we will never experience the beauty if we don’t allow ourselves to step out of our comfort zone and embrace uncertantity. 

One month. No exercise. Here’s what happened

Uncategorized

Helloooo everyone,

As some of you might know, recently I decided to take a break from the gym. While to some this might not seem like a big deal and maybe even relieving not to HAVE to workout everyday, it was a much different experience for me. I couldn’t tell you the last time I took a B R E A K. Actually, I can it was when I was obsessively working out, not eating enough and needed to stop before my health went plummeting downhill. I’ll save that story for another time. This time was different, this time was because I simply wanted to experience ME. Not the me that depends on the gym everyday, not the me on a high from working out every morning. Simply me, in all my endorphin-less glory. 

So here’s the story- I started feeling super stressed with school and pressed for time to workout everyday. I took a few days off and decided maybe I’ll keep this up for a while, you know stay up a little later (studying, hanging out with friends, reading) and sleep in (meaning 8am HA). The first week was fun really, I didn’t have to wake up and meet my demanding daily 7am appointment. But then something interesting started to happen, I stopped focusing as much on my body and more on the way I felt. I ate when I was hungry and admittedly, I let myself eat “non-clean” food every once in a while. AKA PIZZA. And to be honest it felt great. I truly felt that I was tuning into my true self and not this person constantly masked by the effects of working out (good and bad). I believe there are positives and negatives to just about everything, working out included. As great as it is for the mind, body, metabolism, heart, etc. there IS a point of diminishing return. Meaning the constant pushing, mental and physical stress is doing more harm than good. While I have not been to this extreme in a few years, a break was fully warranted and FULLY beneficial. 

Fast forward a few weeks and everything began to go downhill. A little back story: when I was in middle school (and a litttttle bit in high school) I used to have SEVERE anxiety in classrooms, only at that time I had no idea what anxiety was. I would be in class and when the teacher closed the door I would feel trapped. I would get myself so worked up to the point where I thought I was going to be sick. I remember having to calm myself down and continually reassure myself that I was fine, and everything was fine. The class would be over before I knew it and I would be able to bask in the fresh air of a crowded middle school hallway (not as appealing now if you ask me). Anyway…the point of this is I haven’t had that feeling in YEARS and honestly I completely forgot about those minor panic attacks until recently. Recently because it happened again. About two weeks ago I was sitting in class, I had gotten up that morning walked to Starbucks and studied for a few hours instead of going to the gym. It must have been a combination of the unmatched strength of Starbuck’s caffeine and a lack of my daily endorphin release that sent me over the edge, but it was happening. I felt a lump in my throat, sweaty palms and a sudden feeling of sickness. I couldn’t stop my thoughts. Over and over I kept thinking what is wrong with me? Why do I feel this way? I’m going to be sick. I couldn’t stop the shaking, discomfort and 100000mph thoughts racing through my head. After a mental battle with myself I got the courage to get up. I walked out of the classroom straight to the bathroom where I looked at myself, took a few deep breaths and told myself I WOULD be fine. Needless to say I didn’t learn much in class that day. What’s even worse? It started happening more. Not just in that class but in all my classes. I was constantly having to leave the room, go to the bathroom and give myself a pep talk to make it through a 50 minute lecture. What was wrong with me? As time went on I noticed various changes in my thought process, the way I felt and most apparent, my attention span. 

After worsening anxiety and some contemplation I decided I needed to get back to the gym. What had changed since now and middle school? Well a lot, but one thing I know for sure is my healthy habits, particularly working out. Just a few days after being back in the gym I noticed a change in my attention span. I was able to concentrate for longer periods of time and I didn’t find myself daydreaming as frequently. Most importantly my mood shifted. I was reminded of the empowering endorphin rush I get just after a workout and how beneficial it is for my mental well-being. Not only that but WOW it feels good to sweat. My body was giving me signs that I needed to be back in the gym. I was craving that rush and quite frankly could use some release to tackle my anxiety. While a break was just what I needed at the time, it had run its course and  served its use. Moral of the story- workout addiction is real. It is a problem and there CAN be too much of a good thing. Taking a break has allowed me to come back with a fresh start, a new outlook and new goals to work towards. It has taught me that there are aspects of my workout routine I need to focus on and improve. One of the most important things I have learned is the importance of a break. Taking more days off than anticipated is okay. Staying up late one night to hangout with the people you love is okay. Eating that piece of pizza and having that extra piece of chocolate is okay. If the mind isn’t healthy there is no use in focusing on the body. Working out provides me with confidence, ease, and release. It gives me something to work for and something to indulge in other than studying. The benifits of exercise are immense, any research article will tell you that. But a little time off is important too. Know your body, listen to the signs and honor yourself with whatever your needs of the day might be. 

Inner Beauty Doesn’t Age

Uncategorized

Life. It’s such a beautiful thing isn’t it? We start off young and invincible as a child, we grow excited, full of anticipation to see the world and do something with our lives, then slowly we reach an age of stress, anxiety and tension only to then return to an old age of carelessness and disinterest in most everything. This whirlwind takes us through ups and downs, and throughout it all we do everything in our power NOT to reach that final point of aging, of looking and being old.the-legend-of-youth-1214223

Throughout this time we spend hours, days, months, years exerting our energy to ensure we age as gracefully as possible. Anti aging creams, surgical procedures, fitness, and healthy eating are all a part of this barricade we use to fight our physical age. But why is it that we focus SO heavily on this physical aspect? Has anyone ever thought to focus instead on what manifests on the inside? After all, it’s this beauty that lasts forever.

Recently I heard a quote that really stuck with me. It was actually in a movie, in the midst of a conversation but for some reason something about it really resonated with me.

“Inner Beauty Doesn’t Age”

This really made me think about everything that we (and I personally) do in an attempt to postpone/avoid physical aging. Yes, I eat healthy and workout and I will admit that part of that comes from motivation to look healthy. But what about the inside? Every encounter we have, every year of our life impacts the person we become, and that person stays with us forever. What would happen if we made a conscious effort each day to work on our inner beauty? The world would be a little bit of a better place in my opinion. Generosity, courage, kind heartedness, a sense of humor, these are the characteristics that stay with us for the rest of our lives. Society has molded us to into image oriented beings. There is a societal obsession with looks, beauty, sex, and fitness in the unhealthiest way. If you take a moment to think about it, some of the most beautiful people are not necessarily the most “beautiful.” The people that radiate with their big smiles, generous hearts, and courageous personalities THOSE are the most alluring people in the world. We all know that one person that can walk into a room and instantly  win the heart of a crowd with their grandiose personality. They are bold, confident and captivating in such a way that their physical “imperfections” are unnoticed. These are the types of people that never age.

While the outside is still important, it does not take excessive skincare products, starvation and unhealthy exaggerations of fitness to beat the aging process and be deemed a beautiful person. It’s the inside that we should focus on crafting and strengthening. My humble advice to make the world a little bit of a better place is to practice cultivating beauty within, and be conscious of judgmental perceptions based on appearances. Remember appearances will fade but our souls are forever.

 

lotus-flower-1382267

When There’s a Will There’s a Way

Food, Uncategorized

I am currently posted in my cozy little writing corner-tea in hand reminiscing on the amazing opportunity I had this summer to visit the Grand Canyon. I love traveling, seeing new places and learning new things, but I always find myself stressing over where my next meal will be and whether or not I will be able to find something healthy-NOT a healthy habit I will admit, but sometimes I can’t help it.

This vacation was a bit different from your normal beach resort. We spent our days covered in dust and sweat hiking up and down the side of this monstrous canyon (the views were GORGEOUS-more posts to come on that). As or days came to an end we found ourselves exhausted and unable to conjure up enough energy to shower and make it to a big fancy dinner.
Instead of your typical room service we decided to create our own hotel masterpiece. The first night we took it upon ourselves to make a grandiose dinner sans oven/stove/microwave etc. With only a mini fridge, some plastic utensils and $17 worth of food (and food network playing in the background for support) I have to say we got pretty creative.
For our first course we had an elegant little appetizer consisting of Ancient Grain crackers and carrots dipped in tapenade hummus. Fancy right??
Next we moved on to the main course-salad. We started with our base, greens of course and got as crazy as we could with the extras. I bought pre made mixed greens with chopped carrots, sugar snap peas, and cherry tomatoes. From there we added sliced avocado and leftover apple from our hiking snack pack.
Since we were trying to keep things cheap and avoid lugging back extra food on the plane I was at a loss for my typical oil and vinegar. I had to settle for a pre made vinegarette- olive oil vinegar and a few added spices. I tried to find something with as little sugar and preservatives as possible. Sometimes you just have to settle for good enough. Regardless, the salad tasted amazing, my boyfriend said it was the best one i’ve made (HA).

We didn’t quite make it to desert but a few glasses of white wine made up for that. Laughing, joking, and criticizing chopped (favorite show) we had an exhilarating dinner in our private little hotel room. While this may not have been a five star gourmet meal we cultivated a filling, clean and nutritious dish.
This goes to prove that you don’t need fancy kitchen tools or suppliance’s to make a healthy and filling meal. You don’t need a never-ending budget either!

If you put fourth the thought and effort it IS possible to eat healthy no matter where you are.

Little Adventures

Food, Uncategorized

For better or for worse my parents have raised me to be a spoiled rotten foodie. I am always searching for new and unique restaurants (healthy and natural of course) and have been consistently dissatisfied with the typical bar and grill food. This past weekend my boyfriend arrived back in town and we had the opportunity to try a few new places that sparked our interest. seedz_cafe_menu

Recently I’ve been on a raw/natural and semi vegan kick. I found this little cafe in Clayton that may be my new favorite place. It’s called Seedz (a little cheesy but hey-it works). It was just a cute little shop on the corner, not too fancy or in-your-face, thats when you know it’s going to be good.

We decided to keep it light and split a veggie burger and a smoothie. The burger came on a light whole wheat bun, lightly toasted (YUM) with a side of mixed greens a lemon vinaigrette and some tortilla chips. The great thing about these places is that while it may not be a mound of food it is overflowing with quality-filled nutrients and just enough to keep you feeling full and energized. The veggie burger was one of the best i’ve had, it was made with chickpeas and cooked vegetables topped with cashew chipotle cheddar and a generous slice of avocado. I love this because instead of adding rice (more carbs) as most veggie burgers do, they used chickpeas which is much better for you and more flavorful. The burger was oozing with flavor and just the right amount of spice.  IMG_3350If that’s not enough, smoothie was a complete powerhouse as well. Simple yet delicious it contained banana, almonds, maca, Cacao and dates with a sprinkle of coconut flakes on top. I found it interesting that almost all of their smoothies contained dates (this is a rare ingredient for many restaurants). They are packed with preventative and healing properties, a great addition to a smoothie if you’re feeling under the weather or just maintaining a healthy body. The base of the smoothie was made from almond milk and the banana/dates provided a thick and rich flavor that kept me feeling fuller longer.

In addition to the whole and nutritious food the service was admirable. Everyone was extremely sweet and welcoming, providing us with the best experience possible.

This little cafe gives a few of my favorite places a run for their money, I would highly recommend if you ever find yourself in the St. Louis area.
IMG_3348

 

Friday Food For Thought

Food, Uncategorized

My philosophy on food is that everything you eat serves a purpose. When we consume food we should be focusing on nutritious, whole foods that benefit our bodies. Eating is more than just shoving good tasting, or pretty looking “food” into our mouths. It should be strategic and thought out, in this way allowing us to reap the full benefits.

I recently read an article on  Food Matters regarding the best foods for your mood and energy, it inspired me to be mindful of the advantages of specific foods. It can be easy to slip out of healthy eating during a season full of vacation and free time. Here are just a few ideas to keep you energized and feeling your best.

Coconut-I personally have a newfound obsession with coconut. I’ve been adding it to my smoothies, energy bars, and even snacking on raw coconut chips. This fruit/nut is unique in that it contains medium chain triglycerides-a type of fat that is turned into energy instead of being stored as fat (see there are healthy fats!). When you need a little extra boost coconut is a great option.

Kale-We have all heard more than enough about kale in the past 10 years but it truly is one of the healthiest foods we can eat. This superfood is particularly high in vitamins B6, B1, and B2 which are essential vitamins used to convert nutrients into energy. Along many other nutrients kale contains potassium, copper, phosphorus, and iron all of which are minerals our bodies need but may be difficult to find elsewhere.

Ginger Tea-This one may be my favorite, i’m always up for an afternoon tea (really anytime tea for that matter). Ginger has a multitude of health benefits and when infused into tea it serves as the perfect afternoon pick me up. Not only is it filled with antioxidants to flush out all the toxins in your body, it also contains vitamin C, magnesium, and amino acids. This surplus of nutrients improves circulation, manages glucose levels, opens airways, and alleviates tension. In addition a soothing cup of warm tea is always perfect in the middle of a stressful day at work.

Nuts-This powerhouse snack has been highly debated lately and deserves some praise. I personally eat nuts everyday, sometimes even too often. Nuts are one of the most natural and beneficial foods on the market and their nutritional value has been highly neglected. While nuts are full of fat, it is not processed in the body the same way as saturated fats. They are high in magnesium, which allows the body to covert sugar into energy, and will keep you feeling full longer. Raw tree nuts such as almonds, cashews, walnuts and hazelnuts are the most beneficial as they have been linked to improved cholesterol, decreased heart disease, and weight control. Not to mention they are FULL of fiber, and who doesn’t need a little more fiber in their life?

Avocado-EVERYONE should eat avocado everyday. Not only do they taste delicious, but they provide a burst of energy and are chock full of nutrients. They’re a great source of monounsaturated fatty acids, which most of us do not get on a daily basis. These fatty acids are essential for lowering LDL and maintaining healthy cholesterol levels. They are also filled with essential vitamins and minerals-calcium, magnesium, copper, zinc, phosphorus and potassium just to name a few. Even just one half of an avocado on your salad or in a smoothie will give you that little boost you need to make it through the day.

 

No to GMOs

Uncategorized

Have you ever really thought about the food you eat? I mean really thought about it. Not just counting the calories, or checking the nutrition label. I’m talking genetic makeup, means of production and where exactly it came from. Think about the last meal you consumed. The tomato you had on that salad this afternoon was most likely grown a year ago, preserved with ethylene gas and flown halfway across the world. The milk you had for breakfast this morning was produced from a cow given growth hormone banned in five other countries, and that strawberry you’re about to snack on has been injected with genes from a fish. GMO’s or genetically modified organisms are organisms in which the genetic makeup has been altered to produce a desired trait and they are found everywhere in our country. From fresh produce to a greasy McDonalds burger, genetically modified organisms are present in almost 80% of food in the United States. Now i’m sure you’re asking what exactly are they? Many Americans have heard the term and assume the products are some science phenomenon that in no way affects them directly. Sadly this is wrong.

Heres the rundown-GMOs are the direct result of human manipulation of an organisms DNA or genetic makeup. Scientists take genes from one organism and insert them into that of another in order to produce a desired trait. This mechanism is used to cultivate desired traits in organisms that do not posses them naturally. When it comes to food the process involves stripping crops of their natural elements and replacing them with toxins and genes from completely unrelated species. Scientists have three traits in mind when it comes to their crops;

Larger 

Longer lasting 

Pest Resistant 

While these may be good intentions the means of production are reprehensible.

The number one concern surrounding the issue of GMOs is the health and well being of consumers. There is no doubt that GMOs pose a threat to human beings. The effects are evident before the food even reaches the shelves. Farmers working with the crops are required to wear full body protective gear. When I say full body i’m talking head to toe in an all out spacesuit. Should they neglect to wear the proper covering they would break out in vicious reactions. These reactions may include crippling illness, gruesome rashes and various bodily ailments. If these effects occur when the crops are handled hands on it is terrifying to consider the harm they impose on our bodies. As genetically modified organisms have only been on the market for a brief amount of time it is difficult to determine the long term effects, but there have been many direct links between various illness and the consumption of GMOs. Inflammation, kidney and liver malfunction, birth defects and worsened allergies have all been shown to have a direct relationship to GMOs. When we consume this food we are giving it the capability to thrive and flourish inside our bodies. The DNA and chemicals in the food reaches the bloodstream and opens up a door for potential harm.gmo

The consequences span much farther than this. The production of GMOs leaves a devastating impact on the environment. From decreased genetic diversity to a rapid increase of chemicals, the environment has seen much better days. One of the main goals of producers is to cultivate a crop that is pesticide and herbicide resistant. Farmers are able to spray larger amounts of these chemicals without killing off their crops. More herbicides and pesticides means more chemicals and toxic substances in the atmosphere leading to increased pollution. This leads to the death and eventual extinction of many thriving species. Not only are populations dying off but the environment is losing its biodiversity. Genetically modified crops create uniformity among agriculture. The genetic diversity created through natural means of growth is being destroyed and a few staple crops are taking over the agricultural society. As a result the environment is more susceptible to crop failure famine and disease. Genetically modified organisms are key players in the destruction of the environment and should be eradicated.

If genetically altered crops pose such a threat to the wellbeing of consumers and the world why are they produced? What is the driving force behind the introduction of these eccentric products? The answer is simple and a common thread in our society. A profit. Major corporations such as Monsanto have introduced genetically modified organisms with the goal of creating a business. They have become the monarch of modern agriculture imposing a dictoral rule over the industry. With over 2000 patents worldwide they ensure they are the only farms producing genetically modified crops. A patent on a crop? Inserting toxins and foreign DNA does not constitute a creation. They are deceiving consumers into believing they are the creator and owner of all of agriculture. This is wrong and immoral. Seeds are a natural product intended to be bred naturally and available to anyone. Monsanto has impaired that opportunity. Small scale farmers have reported gruesome threats and intimidations by Monsanto in an effort to protect their patent. They impose relentless wrath on farmers until they get their way, some cases even making it to the supreme court. Additionally the company has spent millions of dollars in an effort to combat labeling acts. If genetically modified foods were safe labeling them would not be a problem. Monsanto clearly has something to hide. They are a ruthless company slowly destroying society while personally climbing a ladder of profit.

GMOs are lethal. They are toxic substances that pose a great threat to society. While it may not be feasible to completely eradicate them there are small steps we as consumers can take to diminish their impact.

The nongmo project has started a movement to label GMOs. As consumers we can check products for these labels and stray towards purchasing more of these foods.

Supporting local farmers is a huge step in moving towards a nongmo society. Purchase produce and fresh foods locally as often as possible.

It is important to advocate for the nongmo movement. Engage in the argument, make your opinion heard. A little goes a long way, even a small amount of support will aid in bringing an end to GMOs.

Additional links

*https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1H9WZGKQeYg

http://www.nongmoproject.org

Now I will leave the ball in your court-

What will you  do to strive towards a healthier society?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kicking the Common Cold

Uncategorized

Tis the season for a stuffy nose,  scratchy throat, and that annoying cough that never seems to go away. Our bodies must have some supernatural instinct, as soon as October hits the colds and viruses start to  fancy us with their presence. While the changing weather has a lot to do with it there may be another piece to the puzzle. This is the time of year when we start to kick it into high gear. Summer break is over and we are back in school, work, and attending to various obligations. We are constantly running around in a frantic quest to check the next thing off our to do list. As soon as we think it can’t get any worse we are suddenly reminded of the glorious holiday season right around the corner. Shopping, cooking,  cleaning, entertaining, the list goes on.We are overwhelmed wth social events and family gatherings, overcome with stress and anxiety. We have this constant pressure to do more, work more, be more.

Our bodies are screaming at us to STOP.

If you find yourself plagued with the dreaded flu or even a small case of the sniffles give your body the attention it needs. Take a day, call in sick and focus on rest and rejuvenation.

Below is a list of natural remedies to get you back on your feet:

  • Garlic-one of the worlds superfoods, with its antibacterial and anti fungus properties it has proven to relieve coughs, clear the sinuses, and boost the immune system. Add it to smoothies, soup or even consume it raw
  • Herbal Tea-green tea in particular contains antioxidants proven to help fight colds. Pour yourself a nice hot cup of tea, snuggle up and enjoy the benefits.
  • Vitamin C-cold season is the worst season to skimp on your vitamin C. It contains  nutrients that aid in natural defense, reducing mucus and clearing the respiratory system. Lemon, oranges and other citrus fruits are great sources.
  • Cinnamon-cinnamon is a natural antiviral and antibiotic, it aids in quick recovery and fights against illness. Add it to your tea, soup or yogurt.
  • Chamomile Herb-a wonder herb and natural relaxant. Chamomile h
    as been found to dramatically calm the nerves, reduce inflammation and fevers and reduce ailments. Sip on some chamomile tea before bed each night.
  • Neti Pot-my dad swears by this one. While it is a little gross and a bit painful I have to admit it does wonders for congestion.
  • Fermented Foods-fermented foods are great for the immune system. Try some kimchi, or kefir.
  •   Apple Cider Vinegar-I saved this one for last with good intention. Apple cider vinegar has recently become a phenomenon in the health community. It is said to have a host of benefits including relief from stomach pain, soothing sore throats, lowering cholesterol, preventing indigestion, aid in weight loss, curing acne and much more. Add one tablespoon to your tea, warm water or some honey. If you are brave enough throw it back as a shot.

cold-flu-cough-natural-remedies-runny-nose-headache-fever-chills

Beauty

Uncategorized

img_2345

A few weekends ago I decided to take a break from the crazy college atmosphere and spend the weekend at home with my lovely parents. Sunday afternoon we had lunch at one of my favorite little café’s the Wolf-I highly recommend if you ever find yourself in St. Louis. Their walls are filled with artsy pictures, maps and unique quotes. I found this one in particular extremely interesting.

Seeing the beauty in life is something that can lead to a paradigm shift. If we set our mind to focus on the positive and not dwell on the negative our quality of life has the potential to significantly increase. Part of focusing on positivity involves looking for beauty. Every human being and every situation has something beautiful to offer. From simple conversation, to the warm glow of a falling sunset, there is always a marvelous aspect to be observed.

Natural beauty is something I have been trying to focus on lately. It is common in todays society that we find ourselves searching for unfulfilling beauty. We look to our phones and obscene music when in reality these are artificial creations that distract us from the natural world. We often find these creations unfulfilling, leaving us wanting more, bigger and better. Our focus becomes distorted and the potential for contentment is overruled by negativity and dissatisfaction. Instead of continually dwelling on the negative we should shift our mindset to one of acceptance and positivity. Even the little things have the power to bring beauty and brightness to our lives. Something as simple as a conversation, a moment of connection or even a small touch can instill in us feelings of warmth and joy. Natural beauty is everywhere and can have a major impact on our lives if we let it.


 

 

Letting go of Labels

Uncategorized

Grab your tea, blankets and gather ’round it’s story time.

Quick update on my life: today I was sitting in class, statistics to be specific, allowing my thoughts to wander and attention to shift. I was looking around the room trying to find anything to grab my attention and entertain me for the next 48 minutes. As I scanned the sea of students a bright yellow shirt caught my eye. It was a guy sitting a few rows in front of me and on the back of his shirt it said “Go Greek or Go Home.” This got me thinking. Yes, I realize it is just a shirt and likely has no meaning other than to support Greek life but it made me question the expectations and judgement in the college atmosphere. A little disclaimer; greek life is pretty big at my school. This means labels are everywhere. From t-shirts, and water bottles to car decals and tattoos, we are all branded with our letters in some way or another. Every chance we get we flash our symbols and the first question of any conversation is “what house are you in?” When we proudly state our answer a judgement is made in .00025 seconds. We are placed into a specific category and a multitude of assumptions exist before we can even finish a sentence.

This idea of labels, we allow them to run our lives. It is not only in greek life, it dominates the college atmosphere and even beyond that. There are the band geeks, athletes, burnouts, Jesus freaks, pot heads, hippies, businessmen, the list goes on.

stereotype

It’s as if we are stuck in a box with a million characteristics written on the outside, each of them assumed true until proven otherwise. It’s unethical and immoral.These labels foster misjudgment and deception. They often lead to problems and missed opportunity. That person you met today could have been your future best friend, boyfriend or girlfriend and you let them slip away because of a misplaced judgement.

We are not all carbon copies filled with the same traits. We are made to be different and express ourselves in our own unique image.

The next time you meet someone I challenge you to ditch the labels. Think of them as a  newfound treasure, filled with mystery and opportunity. Try to delve deeper and find out who they are as a person, not who they are categorized to be.