Having a Pet Could Save Your Life

Pets Heal on So Many Levels

CatbeingheldLR"Cathy, Eric and their son Michael Keesling had retired early after handling a flooded basement and setting up a gasoline pump to empty it. Their beloved mellow cat, Winnie, sat in the window enjoying the sounds of the evening. All of sudden, Michael passed out in the hallway. Cathy and Eric soon lost consciousness as well, because of a gas leak. The normally gentle Winnie sprang on Cathy, pulled her hair and yowled in her ear to wake her up. Cathy kept blacking out, but Winnie insisted. Finally, Cathy called 911 and the family was rescued. If Winnie had waited 5 more minutes, they would all be dead!”

Pets are amazing healing agents and powerful lifesavers.  Trained dogs today can detect bladder cancer by sniffing urine and fire dogs can identify arsonists by smelling gasoline on their hands.  Service pets save the lives of their owners every day. They are also great stress relievers.

One study cited on WebMD found that 48 stockbrokers who adopted a pet had lower blood pressure readings under stress than non-pet owners. Another study found that those suffering from serious diseases, such  AIDS or cancer, are far less likely to be depressed if they have a strong tie to a pet.

According to the the University of Minnesota’s Stroke Research Center, simply owning a cat can cut the risk of heart attack. After studying subjects for 10 years, those who owned a cat were 40% less likely to die from heart attacks.

doglickcatLRPet ownership:

• lowers blood pressure
• prevents depression
• reduces incidence of stroke
• helps improve physical activity
• helps people be more social
• reduces loneliness.

So if you are battling stress like 80% of Americans, consider adopting a pet at a shelter.  It could save two lives- yours and theirs.

 

Kindly share this post if you liked it.

Sign up for free tips on success, marketing, happiness and stress relief. http://www.firedupnow.com/kindlings

©2014 Snowden McFall All Rights Reserved. You may share this post and reprint with author reference and copyright.

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

Can You Really Feel Better By Helping Someone?

Relieve Your Stress and Depression through Volunteering

Holding the hand of another“Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.” Leo Buscaglia

One of the last things you might think of doing when you are very stressed is to take the time to help someone else, volunteering. But it can truly be the best thing you can do. I know this from my own personal experience.

Not too long ago, I was tired, frustrated and upset over a business issue, not sure what to do about it.  I was very stressed. Heading home with my husband that night, we turned down our street. He said, “There’s a girl sitting on the corner crying.” We immediately stopped the car and I got out to talk to her. Turns out, she was working for one of those magazine sales companies where they drop off youths and pick them up at the end of the day. She had no phone and no money; her ride was two hours late. So we called her manager and he said a ride was on its way. She waited in the car with us, shared her tragic life story, and when no ride arrived after 45 minutes, we turned around and drove her the half hour distance to her motel. When we arrived, I spoke to the manager about taking better care of this young woman (she was 20,) gave her some money and hugged her goodbye with some encouraging words. As we drove home again, all thoughts about my problems had completely vanished. My concerns were for her and how I could help others like her in the future. I realized my problems were far less pressing. There are those who are struggling to get by every day on the streets. It gave me a whole new appreciation of how fortunate I am.

A new study by Dr. Suzanne Richards and the University of Exeter Medical School, UK, confirms what other studies have said in the past:  volunteering is associated with lower depression, increased well-being, and a 22 % reduction in dying.

There are infinite ways to volunteer:
• mentor a child • help a neighbor repair their home
• organize a fundraiser for the arts
• work at a soup kitchen
• help at a homeless shelter
• participate in a “clean up your park” project
• volunteer at an animal shelter
• read to seniors at a senior center or hospital
• collect diapers for newborn centers
• help out at elementary schools
• collect books for literacy programs and then read for them

Try it.  No matter how upset you are about your life, you will experience an instant turn-around.  Always come from your heart and volunteer for something that matters to you.  And just like that, your problems will seem insignificant.

For a free report on how to get and stay Fired Up!, go here http://firedupnow.com/top20tips/  This will also subscribe you to Kindlings, my weekly email newsletter.

Kindly share this post if you liked it.

©2013 Snowden McFall All Rights Reserved. You may share this post and reprint with author reference and copyright.

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

Asking For Help is Smart

Don't Deny Others the Chance to Assist

Holding the hand of anotherRecently, I heard from a  friend in the hospital who is critically ill.  She had been there for 5 days and was calling to let me know.  I was so grateful to know what was going on, to be able to pray for her and check on her.  I only wish she had let me know sooner. Another dear friend recently learned he has cancer, but reached out to me weeks after the diagnosis.  Those are weeks I could have been there for him, helping him sort through solutions, fear and pain.

Most of us have a tendency to put others first, and to not ask for help. And that's a mistake.  Martyring ourselves by saying we don't want to bother others or trouble them denies us the gifts of love and support.  We also deserve help, especially in difficult times.

Some people prefer to go off and isolate themselves while they figure things out,
and I respect that.  However, isolation can lead to depression and negative thinking, at a time when loved ones could provide compassion and understanding. Scientists have shown that reaching out to other people during a stressful event is an effective way to improve your outlook.  So your perspective could improve dramatically.

You never know- you might get some great solutions to problems you are having, connecting you with valuable resources you never knew existed.  Share your life, share with your loved ones, and allow yourself to be supported. You are worthy of it.

To sign up for Snowden’s ezine newsletter on stress, happiness, marketing and motivation, please go to: http://firedupnow.com/firedupemailregister.html

Kindly share this post if you liked it.

©2013 Snowden McFall All Rights Reserved. You may share this post and reprint with author reference and copyright.

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

Water is Critical to Your Health & Productivity

Are you massively dehydrated?

Glass of water from Stress ExpressIn many parts of the world, water is a rare and precious commodity. 780 Million people lack access to clean water. And yet in the Western world, we take it for granted, waste it on our lawns and forget to hydrate ourselves.

Every cell in our body depends on water to function properly.  Every day, we lose about 8 cups of water, which must be replenished.

A 2% drop in body water can trigger lack of concentration, short-term memory problems and trouble focusing.  A 5% drop in body fluids will cause a 25-30% loss in energy; a 15% drop causes death.  

80% of North Americans are suffering from dehydration, which causes:

• energy loss
• mental and physical exhaustion
• headaches and stiff joints
• anxiety and stress
• kidney stones
• cancer and diabetes

Even mild dehydration will slow down your metabolism by 3%!

A recent report says drinking 5 glasses of water daily cuts the risk of colon cancer by 45%, and the risk of breast cancer by 79% .  Imagine what would happen if you drank 8 glasses of water a day!

Caffeine dehydrates you as a diuretic, so for every cup of coffee or tea you drink, have two glasses of water. Avoid drinking soda.  The active ingredient is phosphoric acid, which leaches calcium from your bones, causing osteoporosis.

Carry around a glass water bottle, fill it regularly from the purified fountain at work, and drink it every hour.  You'll be amazed by how much more energy you have and how much better you feel.

 

To sign up for Snowden’s ezine newsletter on stress, happiness, marketing and motivation, please go to: http://firedupnow.com/firedupemailregister.html

Kindly share this post if you liked it.

©2013 Snowden McFall All Rights Reserved. No duplication or reprinting without permission and author reference

Follow my blog with Bloglovin


The Why Do It List- TIme Management Tool

Exhausted woman on files
THis woman needs a nap!

What are your true priorities?

Most of us are overwhelmed at work every day with "To Do" lists that never end.  Mike Vardy, author and blogger, says to approach your list differently.
 
He says make a list of the top things you need to do this week, including workfamily, personal, etc. with the answers to the question "Why do it" after each. Knowing the WHY instantly clarifies what has greatest value in your life. Then schedule your week. 
 
All too often, we let the real priorities in our lives, people, loved ones, exercise, fun, slide under the overwhelm of work.  And then we end up unhappy and unhealthy and resentful.  Once you know why you want to do something, you can prioritize what is most important and be sure your to do list is meaningful for you.

To sign up for Snowden’s ezine newsletter on stress, happiness, marketing and motivation, go to: http://firedupnow.com/firedupemailregister.html

©2013 Snowden McFall All Rights Reserved. No duplication or reprinting without permission and author reference

The Absolute Best Stress Reliever

The #1 Stress Reliever: Fun Exercise

smiling dancersWe all know exercise is important, and truly all the research points to exercise as the best panacea for relieving stress, extending life, removing toxins from your body and preventing serious diseases like obesity and diabetes. The key to sticking with exercise is to make it FUN and find a way to squeeze it into your day.

 
For my husband and me, the big three are salsa dancing, bicycling, andyoga.  And when we don't have time for anything else, walking for 15 minutes will do.
 
How to Fit Exercise Into Your Busy Day

I recently started a short-term consulting project that takes most of my day, and it means my healthy habits have been pushed aside for meetings, etc.  I've been trying to incorporate more exercise into these busy days and here's what I have learned so far:
 
- take the stairs whenever possible
- park far away from the entrance to increase your walking
- get up every hour from sitting (sitting too long is sooooo bad for you)
- go to bed earlier and do an exercise video before work; often it is 20 min of yoga
- take a long walk at lunch time
- find an exercise class at lunch or early morning.
 

(And if I plan ahead and take a healthy lunch to work, I am less likely to eat the wrong things.)

 
What do you do to sneak exercise into your life? ? Love to hear from you - please share any suggestions you may have.  Email them to me at orders@firedupnow.com and with your permission, I will share them in future posts.

To sign up for Snowden’s ezine newsletter on stress, happiness, marketing and motivation, go to: http://firedupnow.com/firedupemailregister.html

©2013 Snowden McFall All Rights Reserved. No duplication or reprinting without permission and author reference

Overcoming the Stress of Holidays

Stress Express; Family Fighting

You Can Overcome Holiday Stress

All too often the pressure of meals, gift-giving, family dynamics and time management get to be too much.  Here's how to prevent and beat that  holiday stress.
 
• Ask for help. If you are cooking a holiday meal, don't do it all.  Be specific and ask each guest to bring something you need.  It will lighten your load and expense.

 Use your neighborhood grocery- many will make all elements of your meal, or you can buy pre-made side dishes and desserts to save time and hassle.
 
• Do something untraditional- like Mexican or Italian

• Consider not doing the family thing.  A coaching client of mine was dreading the negativity that their family regularly spews at holiday functions.  I coached them to go on a vacation with their children.  It worked out great and everyone was relaxed.
 
• Put the battles aside for one day.  Vow to forgive and bite your tongue and change the conversation when it gets sensitive or controversial.

  

©2012 Snowden McFall All Rights Reserved. No duplication or reprinting without permission and author reference

To sign up for Snowden’s ezine newsletter on stress, happiness, marketing and motivation, go to: http://firedupnow.com/firedupemailregister.html


Add “New” to Fire Up! Your Life

Keep Your Life Fresh by Trying New Things

Brendon Burchard in his new book The Charge has some great suggestions about staying Fired Up!  Something you may not have thought of is trying new things.  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:
 
• 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 restaurants you have never visited, try different kinds of food

• Spend time with new people - go to different networking or social events and broaden your circle. 
 
• Develop new skillsets - my husband and I just installed a new glass tile backsplash in our kitchen.  It was challenging but fun, and we love the results.
 

©2012 Snowden McFall All Rights Reserved.  No duplication or reprinting without permission and author reference

Two Things That Shorten Your Life

Stop Sitting So Much & Cut Down on TV 

 According to an article in US Today, if you spent less than 3 hours a day sitting, it would add 2 years to your life.  And if you reduced your TV watching to less than to 2 hours a day, you could add another 1.4 years to your life.  Sitting is linked to diabetes, heart disease and stroke.  About half of the US reports sitting for 6 or more hours a day and 65% spend more than 2 hours a day watching TV.

 

New research presented at the American Institute for Cancer Research Conference reported that sedentary behavior is linked to breast and colon cancer.  Being sedentary (sitting) for long periods of time without moving increases inflammation (a leading cause of disease.)

The solution: set a timer for every hour.  Get up, move, walk around, look at nature, drink 8 ounces of clean water and connect with another human being. It could make a huge difference to your health.

 

©2012 Snowden McFall All Rights Reserved.  No duplication or reprinting without permission and author reference

Stress Tip: Ask for What You Want

At Work, At Home, Made Your Needs Clear

Exhausted woman from Stress Express!So many times, we get upset because someone did not do what we wanted how we wanted it, and we did not get our needs met. The easiest way to overcome this is to be crystal clear about what you want and ask for it. Most people are grateful to have clarity and to know how to help and support you.  They want to participate in your life but may not know how.

I have found at home that my wonderful husband cannot read my mind. So I ask, "The garbage is really smelly- could you please take it out now?"  He responds very well to requests. (Rather than complaints- most of us are like that.)

When you are swamped at work, at the end of your rope and so stressed, you are snapping at others, ask for help.  Try a  request like " This week is going to be difficult for me because I am overwhelmed with the new regulations. Could you please help me by following up on the___ project?  I don't want to slow down our progress.  Thanks so much for your assistance with this."  Others will be happy to help when you clue them in.

©2012 Snowden McFall All Rights Reserved.  No duplication or reprinting without permission and author reference