Women are More Stressed Than Men

http://www.dreamstime.com/stock-images-business-woman-cubicle-overworked-stressed-image5934154According to American Psychological Association’s  Work and Well-Being Survey,women are more stressed than ever.

• 37% of women feel stressed at work, versus 33% of men.
• Only 48% of women feel work is an equal playing field for both genders, while 54% of men do.
• Only 43% of women feel they are paid enough, compared to 48% of men.
• Only 35% of women feel they have the chance to move up, versus 43% of men.
•To manage their stress, 34% of women say they have enough resources to do so versus 38% of men.
Women are under greater pressure in part because they are responsible for an increased share of their households’ earnings and because they are still trying to juggle more of the home workload.


How to Reduce Your Stress:

Get at least 7 hours of sleep a night.   Any less and the World Health Organization labels it a carcinogen. You carry an extra 20 pounds of weight and are 3 times more likely to catch a cold or flu.

Drink water- lots of it.  80% of North Americans are dehydrated, and that leads to overeating, high blood pressure, and sleep disturbance.

Exercise in a fun way, preferably with a buddy- at least 4 times a week. All it takes is 15 minutes.  Exercise is good for you on so many levels, especially as a stress reliever.

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Are You Getting Enough Hugs to be Healthy?

You Need More Than You Think!

 

Me and Cinderella
Me and Cinderella- the woman who gave me my hugs growing up!

According to noted American pyschologist and educator, Virginia Satir, we need 4 hugs a day for survival, 8 hugs a day for maintenance, and 12 hugs a day for growth.

Most people are lucky if they get 1 or 2 hugs a day.

So up your intake and give hugs freely. . Recently, I was visiting one of the non-profits I volunteer for and talking to a little boy, stroking his back. He just leaned in for a hug, which I was more than happy to give.  We all need touch, and in this day and age, hugging can heal so much.  Take the time to give full-on, heart-felt hugs to others as a way of sharing.  The rewards for everyone are so worth it.

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Feed Your Brain Right

A Healthy Brain Impacts Everything

http://www.dreamstime.com/royalty-free-stock-photography-hard-day-image22576797Believe it or not, your brain is key to everything you do.  Your body couldn't function without your brain, your decisions, communication and life choices couldn't happen without your brain.  You can't be truly happy or Fired Up! without a healthy brain.  And your brain has everything to do with stress.  Worry, anxiety, fear, sleeplessness- all related to our brains.  We take our brain for granted and Dr. Daniel Amen, brain specialist, says that's a big mistake.  Here's some food for thought:

the more you weigh, the smaller and less effective your brain- yikes!

• damage to the front of your brain hurts decision-making for the rest of your life, so that's why helmets for skiers, bikers, etc are so critical for both adults and children

• less than 7 hours of sleep means low blood flow to the brain: you can't think right.  Get at least 7 hours!

Stress Tip: Feed Your Brain the Right Activities & Food

You already know that ice cream, processed foods, sugary white foods are bad for you,
on so many levels.  They impact the way you handle stress, they impact your energy and blood sugar levels.  You can't be motivated and happy with a poor diet.  Brain food is a healthy diet:

• lots of raw fruits and vegetables
• small protein meals throughout the day
• nuts and protein snacks at afternoon meetings to improve mental clarity.

Low blood sugar = poor decision-making.

Exercise is important, but include weight training twice a week.  The stronger you are as you age, the healthier your mind.  And do coordination exercises each week- ping pond, tennis, dancing are all great.

 

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Are You Stuck in a Rut instead of Fired Up?

chargebkcoverHumans Need NEW to Keep Growing 

In his  book The Charge, Brendon Bouchard has some great suggestions about staying Fired Up!   The brain is hardwired for novelty and challenge and needs to be engaged to keep thriving.  Here are a few ways to incorporate new into your life and have a Fired Up! life, filled with motivation and fun:

90 day getaway - every 90 days go away and explore someplace you have not been, doing new activities. It does not have to be expensive- it just needs to be different.

Restaurant tour; explore dining establishments  you've never visited, try different kinds of food.  Exploring new places will keep you motivated

Spend time with new people - go to different networking or social events and broaden your circle.

Develop new skills - At home, my husband and I just installed a new glass tile backsplash in our kitchen.  It was challenging but fun, and we love the results.

To feel more Fired Up! about life, to keep growing and keep motivated, try doing new things.

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The Surprising Source of Most Pain

Lack of Sleep Causes Many Serious Issues

sleepless

New research out of England shows that lack of sleep is the strongest predictor of pain for those over 50. Pain obviously causes more stress and makes you sleep poorly.  It's a vicious cycle. Restless or insufficient sleep has so many negative consequences and severely impacts wellness:

• the World Health Organization has considered labeling less than 7 hours a night of sleep as a carcinogen- cancer-causing agent
• increased risk of heart disease
• fewer new brain cells created
• premature aging
• excess weight- 20 pounds usually
• 3x more susceptible to colds and flu
• greater stress and less ability to respond well to problems

Three factors influence your ability to get a good night's sleep:
• timing- try to go to bed at the same time every night
• duration- you need at least 7 hours of sleep
• intensity- which is impacted by whether you got 30 minutes of sunshine during the day and whether your room is nice and dark at night

Be careful not to look at your ipad®, phone screen or computer before bed- leave at last an hour before bed when you shut down exposure to visual stimulants from computer screens. Your overall health and wellness depends so much on good rest.   Getting a good night's sleep every night has a huge impact on your health, your stress levels, your body's pain and more.  Make it priority. Your body will thank you.

 

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Sugar is my Nemesis- How about you?

cookietinLRI can't be trusted around sugar.  I know this about myself.  Because I eat it.  Even though I know better.  So I never have it in the house.  If it's there, I eat it.

There are so many reasons why sugar is bad for you.  Try reading Sugar Blues, which I did decades ago when I switched to stevia and stopped eating double-stuffed oreos.®  (Sigh...I miss them.)

According to a recent article in Prevention, people with heavy sugar intake have a 58% higher risk of depression. Sugar weakens your skin and causes wrinkles, damages your kidneys, creates inflammation  and can make arthritis much worse. Not to mention how it contributes to obesity and disease.

I had been doing so well for several weeks (after Christmas)  and then I decided to throw a surprise birthday party for one of my best friends.  This, of course, meant I had to bake her a cake, and I did.  Not one but two cakes, since she told me she loved banana cake as well as chocolate.  (Look it up- very similar to banana bread with icing.)

And that was my downfall.  Because when I iced the cakes, some icing got on my fingers.  And when we sang happy birthday and she blew out her candles, I cut the cake. . I had to have some myself just to be polite. (LOL) They were good- wayyyyyy too good. So this morning I sent most of the chocolate cake off to work with my husband, where I thought he might give it away (although I knew better. He has the same addiction I do.)

I kept one piece for me to enjoy and savor. I threw the excess icing in the trash so I could not get to it.  And after being out on the road all day, seeing clients, preparing for a speech, coaching a great lady, I came home to that piece of cake.  And I savored it.

And tomorrow as I look at my swollen stomach, which has now pooched out in front by several inches, I will no longer eat the sugar. I will return to my normally healthy eating habits of organic food, fruits and veggies and protein. What can I say...I'm only human and I'm working on it.  I forgive myself and move on.  What about you?  What are your guilty secrets?

 

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