Combat stress through better nutrition!

We will all experience stress to some degree through our lives, some more than others. We have developed various coping strategies to deal with stress, some effective, some less so. Some of us exercise, while others listen to music. Some people like to take time out for a hobby, or to play with their children. We have to accept that stress is all around us, in our work lives, at home, in our relationships. Some people are innately and genetically better at dealing with stress. Others can teach and train themselves to handle stress more efficiently, what most people don’t realise is the right food choices can dramatically assist the body in better handling stress.Stress

Therefore, we have more control over stress than we might realise; that’s good news!!

We have total control over what we put in our bodies, typically when people are stressed they make bad nutritional choices such as caffeine, alcohol and fast foods. Every cell in the body needs good nutrition to work optimally; stress depletes the body of vitamins, minerals and nutrients. It can degrade digestive function and slows the metabolism resulting in you feeling more tried, irritable and angry. Very quickly we can see a vicious circle beginning where we make poor choices which will compound our ability to deal with the stressful situation in the first place.

The hormonal chaos prolonged stress causes can increase your risk of blood sugar problems, high blood pressure, fatigue and weight gain. A well-balanced diet is crucial in combating stress.  Stay away from the usual culprit’s caffeine, alcohol, salty foods, fatty foods, sugar, refined and processed foods.

When the body is under stress, it has been proven that he body uses up its resources until they are bare.

The following are the main nutrients that he body will use up under stress:

  • B vitamins: These help the body cope with stress (build your metabolism) and control the whole nervous system
  • Proteins: Assist in growth and tissue repair
  • A vitamins: Essential for normal vision
  • C vitamins: Protection of the immune system (antioxidants, diabetes protection etc.). Lowers the amount of cortisol in your body (Stress hormone
  • Magnesium: Needed for a variety of tasks such as muscle relaxation, fatty acid formation, making new cells and heartbeat regulation.

source: http://www.stress.org.uk/files/Combat-Nutritional-Stress.pdf

Let’s take a look at some stress reducing foods:fruits-and-veggies

Celery– contains nutrients that clam, including niacinimide. It’s an old folk recipe to lower blood pressure.

Sunflower seeds – rich source of potassium, B Vitamins and zinc which play a critical role in the health of the adrenal glands.

Brown rice is a slowly absorbed carbohydrate that can help trigger the release of the body’s feel good chemicals

Cabbage is a good stress busting source of the antioxidants vitamins A, C and E, beta-carotene and mineral selenium

Berries – are rich in magnesium and vitamin C. Insufficient vitamin C can weaken your immune system and make you feel generally stressed and run down.

 

Read more stress busting foods in – “You are what you eat” by Dr Gillian McKeith

 

I personally used to juice for 8 years after learning just how important a good diet rich in fruits and vegetables is to keep us performing at our top-level. The effects of stress on the body should not be underestimated, I was very fortunate to be introduced to a whole food nutrition supplement which is the essence of 26 fruits, vegetables and berries which I take every day; I have said goodbye to time consuming, messy juicing! For more information visit www.energisejuiceplus.com

Simple steps to much less Stress

I also recommend you take a look at this book by Ann Peckham “Simple steps to much less stress”. A wonderful book full of easy to implement strategies to combat stress. Anne has transformed her own health, reducing her weight, lowering blood pressure and cholesterol and all without dieting or medication. And is passionate about helping others to do the same!

 

Finding ways to reduce the level of stress in your life will open up reserves of energy and determination you may not know you had!

 

Advertisements

What do you really appreciate in your life right now?

One of the main reasons most people do not have what they want in their life right now, is because they are not grateful for what they already have. When we focus on being blessed and grateful for the things we have in our life – it makes us think in the NOW… and we pay attention to the best of our life – this makes us feel good, and great feelings lead to great emotions. Gratitude drives emotions of belief and faith… and being thankful for what we have is Gratitude.

Being able to live in the ‘NOW’ allows us to appreciate what we have, in this age of distraction we are constantly worrying about the future or obsessing about the past that we let the present pass us by. We are always doing ‘something’, not many people practise stillness and clam.

“We need to live more in the moment. Living in the moment—also called mindfulness—is a state of active, open, intentional attention on the present. When you become mindful, you realize that you are not your thoughts; you become an observer of your thoughts from moment to moment without judging them. Mindfulness involves being with your thoughts as they are, neither grasping at them nor pushing them away. Instead of letting your life go by without living it, you awaken to experience.”

source: http://www.psychologytoday.com/articles/200810/the-art-now-six-steps-living-in-the-moment

gratitude

Gratitude is available the instant you bring all your awareness to this moment and really open up who you are to experience what is here. In order gratitude to be true and real, there must be a total acceptance of where you are right now – even though it might not be exactly where you want to be – by embracing it fully inside you, this allows you to accept life’s blessings and if you really experience this, your heart will open up to more than you could ever want or dream about.

How do you life in the moment?

Living a wonderful life

Why can’t I have a wonderful life? Of course, you can! It just depends on how you FEEL about your life and what you DO to HAVE a wonderful life!

That’s it! You don’t need to read any more; you’ve found the answer! However, just in case you have hit a little stumbling block and aren’t really sure, let me tell you a secret.

Taking action is part of the formulae of living a fulfilling life – BE – DO – HAVE

Grab a massive sheet of paper and a pack of coloured pens. If you have a spare roll of wallpaper, even better! You can make your sheet of paper at least 2 metres long! Now choose the brightest coloured pens and write down all those positive feelings you want to have and as you write them focus on the energy they provide. Make those words absolutely MAHOOSIVE!! We don’t want little, scrunched-up words that are hiding away in the bottom corner! If you haven’t been feeling these positive thoughts for a while they HAVE to jump out at you. Big & bold!!

Here are some that may grab your attention but it’s up to YOU. Write down as many words as you want: happy, confident, daring, strong, brave, interested, interesting, alive, kind, content, thrilled, wonderful, thankful, joyful, loving, loved, comfortable, secure, passionate, optimistic, enthusiastic, free, dynamic & thankful.

Don’t forget about the way in which you write those words. They have to be BIG & BOLD!

Go ahead! Create the wonderful life you want & deserve!

Go ahead! Create the wonderful life you want & deserve!

Many people find that once they start their list that they know many more. Why not fill the whole page? When finished, step back from your masterpiece and circle three words that are the most important to you – draw a picture, symbol or write a few words that says what you will do to make you feel that way.

Make a promise to yourself today! Lead your life the way that you want to. Sure, there may be influencing factors that take you in one direction or another but the next time you find yourself choosing what direction to take, firstly consider how you want to feel.

Let’s think through an example: Emily lives in a small flat with her two flatmates. She has completed her list and she draws some flowers next to the word “wonderful”. She doesn’t have a garden, one of her roommates has a severe pollen allergy and after failed attempts to grow watercress – the first batch went yellow & the second only grew by about 3 cm – she has given up gardening for good. However Emily connects flowers with feeling wonderful- the bright colours & lovely smells. So what can Emily do?

It’s often quite easy to come up with solutions for others or to help someone out so take a step back and imagine you are giving advice to someone else. Take your three words and write down a few words or draw an image connected to what you will do.

Lastly, fold up your paper and write down today’s date on it AND what date it will be in a month’s time.

Go back to your list in a month’s time and let me know how you’ve got on. Have you put the wheels in motion to carry out your promise?

How to build morale in your team?

There are many factors that can affect the morale of a team, if you are in a leadership position it’s vital that you recognise the level of morale. As a leader if you want a team to perform it’s your responsibility to inspire and lead your team to create a productive environment.

According to sociologist Alexander Leighton, “morale is the capacity of a group of people to pull together persistently and consistently in pursuit of a common purpose.” – See more

You might not be able to measure morale as such but teams with high morale have low turnover of staff, low sickness rates, high productivity, high levels of staff engagement, all of which can be measured.  These will directly affect the profitability of your business so I urge you to pay attention to team morale!

Happy team

Ways to boost morale

  1. The first step begins with you as the leader. You have to inspire your team if you have the attitude that employees are easy to replace or people should be grateful for their position you will not recognise the signs of low morale. You must recognise the value of your employees!
  2. Mix it up! Being stuck in the same routine day after day gets boring for you and your team. Find ways to change the day-to-day grind. If you always have a meeting in a boardroom, go out for lunch instead. Find ways to make life more pleasant in general for employees, could you offer flexible schedules, work from home schedules, gym memberships etc ?
  3. Understand that the work environment can greatly affect employee morale. Ask your employees what they would like to improve and make it happen
  4. Recognise the special events in employee’s lives. Birthdays, weddings, births, the accomplishments of employee children—if you have a reason to celebrate, do it!
  5. Open, 2 way communication is a must. Communication is often one of the biggest challenges in business, you must encourage the lines of communication between management and the team. Employees what to feel important and have their ideas and opinions listened to, likewise the want to be trusted with important company data and business decisions. Most employees in the workforce want to work for a company they can trust and believe in!
  6. Invite in local experts. Find out what interests your employees have outside of the work environment and perhaps once a month invite in an expert to give an hours talk or class. Provide lunch and refreshments, make it fun! It could be a Zumba class, a gardening hour, personal trainer, massage therapist, whatever the subject it gives a break from the routine.
  7. Train employees to develop positive attitudes. Mindset makes the difference in business, one negative mindset can affect the moral of the whole team. Invest in your team with training days, workshops, coaching, whatever is suitable for your business.  Understanding each others different perspectives will go along way in boosting morale and reducing conflict. To truly  reach the top your team needs to shed its limiting beliefs and embrace opportunities to shine.
  8. Saving the best till last, above all HAVE FUN! You don’t have to dress in a clown’s costume, but you can promote a feeling of happiness and satisfaction in the workplace. Go out and talk to your employees. Smile. Recognize what they do, for without them, you wouldn’t have a business to start with.

What’s worse than training your workers and losing them? Not training them and keeping them.”

—Zig Ziglar

 

Visit my website http://www.transform-my-life.com/ for more information; get the right mindset and lead the transformation!

Do you take your health for granted?

WHO definition of Health

“Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.”

How much attention to you pay towards your health? As busy business people under pressure from deadlines, juggling family life, traveling from conferences to meetings, you could be constantly eating on the run, wanting to find time for the gym, reaching for the wine glass after a particularly stressful day; we have all been there! Often we let our health slide because we don’t prioritize it against the many other tasks we have to deal with. Unfortunately we can’t see the damage we are doing on the inside, the human body is a wonderful machine and will take years of abuse but in the end something will give. Often we are like sitting ducks, only valuing our health when we are faced with an illness.

In our fast paced, convenience driven lifestyles how did we become so far removed from what is good for us? Hippocrates, often known as ‘The father of medicine’ said:

“Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food”

 

“The natural healing force within each of us is the greatest force in getting well.”

medicine is food

Hippocrates was born something like 460 BC and was the first physician of the time to separate medicine from religion, believing and arguing that disease was not a punishment inflicted by the gods but rather the product of environmental factors, diet, and living habits. Wouldn’t you think after all this time we would be much better equipped to look after our health?

We throw at our bodies all sorts of insults in the form of processed food, alcohol, environmental toxins and lack of exercise hoping that it will cope and that nothing bad will happen. It’s funny that we will have our car’s serviced each year because we know it will save us money in the long run yet we don’t treat our bodies with the same respect;  it’s the one thing we all own which can’t be replaced!!

Don’t ignore the warning signs!

For some people it will take a major health challenge to get their attention and motivate them enough to slow down and take better care of themselves.  For others, the mere inconvenience and nuisance of getting the flu and colds regularly, regular headaches, having no energy or feeling run down will be enough of a warning sign  to make fundamental lifestyle changes. Getting the balance right between sleep/relaxation, exercise and nutrition is the secret to well-being. Can you afford not to prioritize your health?

 

Visit my health blog for more advice www.synchealth.co.uk  on maintaining a healthy lifestyle.