5 Tips for Surviving the Holidays


5 Tips for Surviving the Holidays

The holidays are kinda weird. For all the ‘Most Wonderful Time of the Year’ jingles, it’s also the toughest for many people. Some people over-commit to family, friends, volunteer tasks and find themselves over scheduled and unable to actually enjoy the season. Some of us dread the inevitable, obligatory socializing and the pressure of being ‘on’. Some of us are grieving.

So here are a few less-typical Holiday Survival Tips. Some of them are brilliant. Some of them are not. But maybe you’ll find a nugget in here.

Ditch obligations

Just because you’ve always gone to Aunt Sue’s for Christmas Eve doesn’t mean you always have to. You can stop going.

Say, “I’m starting a new tradition this year, I’m really looking forward to cooking with my kids and having a quiet family night.” Then set up another time to visit Aunt Sue when you’ll actually be able to visit her, instead of just a hug between appetizers while stuffed into a small house with 30 loud relatives.

Reframe obligations

When I hear people complain about all the ‘stuff’ they have to do, I usually say, “Dude. Stop doing it.” The typical reply is, “Oh, but I really like having 37 different types of cookies and seeing all my 3rd cousins!” Cool. I can respect that. But stop looking at (and speaking of) the tasks and events like chores.

This isn’t a martyr contest. Nobody gives a darn that Betty SUV Soccer Mom makes her bundt cake from scratch and you use a mix. Except Betty, and that’s her issue. Do stuff because you want to, because it brings you joy. And quit doing the stuff you don’t want to do.

Stick with the people who warm your soul

Some of us are not close with our families. For many, many people, family relationships are rarely nourishing and often painful. We’ve built friendships that stand in for the sibling and parental relationships that will simply never be fulfilling.

So why feel obligated to spend a holiday with anyone other than those who bring us joy and unconditional love? Create a holiday plan with the people you most enjoy and cherish. or at the very least, an escape plan to unwind with the people who will let you vent after a stressful family interaction.

Step back from the gift-giving (and receiving) or just change it dramatically

Do you really want another gift set of perfumey bath gel and body lotion? Do you really want to be giving that to someone else? Blech. Maybe it’s time to reexamine your gift-giving habits. Instead of exchanging gifts with your adult friends and family, can you decide to spend that money having a great dinner together in January?

If you feel really attached to giving a tangible object, can you simplify the process? Find one universal gft, and give it to all your people. A jar of local honey from you favorite apiary, a holiday ornament purchased from a local charity.

Rethink your assumptions

Just because you’ve always done the holidays a certain way, doesn’t mean you have to keep doing that. It’s all a choice. Sometimes you don’t even need to change the pattern, just recognizing that it’s a choice is enough.

What changes have you made to improve your holiday season? Help a sister out and share in the comments!

Wishing you a happy, merry, joyous whatever-you-celebrate. I hope you get exactly the holiday you want (and deserve).

Love and light!

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5 Tips for Surviving the Holidays

Stop headaches before they start!!

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June is Migraine and Headache Awareness Month and we are going to jump right in and look at some ways to stop the pain before it starts. Are you ready? Let’s go.

 

Avoid triggers

If certain foods or scents have triggered headaches in the past, it could be time to make a note of them and avoid them at all costs. Things like caffeine, cigarette smoke, and bright lights can be a big culprit in spurring on pain, but it doesn’t have to be that obvious. Perfumes, loud noises, flowers, and even lunch meat have the power to make you miserable.

 

Workout often

Exercising on a regular basis reduces tension and can help prevent headaches. Choose something you enjoy doing – walking, biking, kayaking, hiking, etc. – and follow the proper guidelines for the exercise you’re engaging in. That means stretching and warming up slowly. And don’t forget proper hydration.

 

Bonus: It is also said that obesity can be a factor in triggering migraines, so exercise can help you maintain a healthy weight or lose excess pounds.

 

Eat and sleep regularly

Lack of sleep and skipping meals can aggravate symptoms for the migraine sufferer. Make sure you are getting enough fluids and are eating meals at regular times. Lack of sleep (or even getting too much sleep) will also aggravate symptoms, so implement routine and stick to it.

 

Control stress

Stress. Stress. Stress. It happens. Sometimes it’s hard to avoid. The only thing we can change is our response to it. Learn techniques to reduce stress levels like breathing, yoga and meditation. You can also combat stress with a massage, a long walk, a hot shower, or whatever you need to do to take the edge off.

 

Aromatherapy

Essential Oils are a wonderful tool to reduce the pain associated with headaches. Personally I have had migraines in the past, this was when I was first introduced to EO’s as a medicine versus aroma/perfume. Currently I have found that using a Peppermint inhalant helps to reduce the pain.   **please note: be sure that the oils you are using are from a trusted source. Any questions I will be happy to direct you**
According to the Migraine Research Foundation, nearly 36 million Americans suffer from migraine headaches. Acknowledging the triggers and patterns surrounding your migraine episodes will help you figure out what’s causing them and minimize your chances of experiencing headache pain.

 

Love & Light!

Naomi

Stop headaches before they start!!

Love your skin!

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As a child I never really enjoyed laying out in the sun. Although a few childhood summers  I just wanted to be like everyone else with the sun kissed hair, and the bronze skin. So I attempted to make a peace sign out of cardboard, I laid out on my driveway with my cardboard cutout on my leg, the radio blasting Paula Abdul, waited for my sun made tattoo and instead burned. Ever since I never have the golden bronze days just the lobster red. As a child of the 80’s & 90’s sun screen was known, but not forced to use like it is now. I bring my kids to summer camps with a mad dash of application just before they hurriedly run in! If they are  not smelling like coppertone they will call me back to lather up my kids! By the end of summer we have the routine down, I’m looking forward to a smooth summer of 2016! 

With my lack of sun tanning  and  the few times I times I laid in a tanning bed (I can count on one hand). I never thought I would be a candidate for Melanoma. I was wrong… August of 2003 I went in for a routine lady OBGYN visit and well long story short I had 9 small dark spots and two large brown areas tested and sure enough some came back positive and the borders needed to be fully removed. It was an eye opening experience. YOU CAN GET SKIN CANCER WHERE THE SUN DOES NOT SHINE!  So please in addition to your sun exposed skin please get your “entire” body checked! Hair/scalp, armpits, genitals.  

Simple Steps to Prevent and Detect Melanoma/Skin Cancer

Summer is right around the corner and where there is more sun, there is often more skin exposure. May is Melanoma/Skin Cancer Detection and Prevention Month and we are going to look at some ways you can prevent and detect skin cancer.

PREVENT

Cover up with clothes and sunscreen.

As a rule of thumb, cover up as much as possible. Be sure to wear a broad-brimmed hat and UV blocking sunglasses. Use broad spectrum (UVA/B) sunblock with SPF 15 or higher every day. If you’ll be active outdoors, opt for a water-resistant, UVA or UVB sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher. (Sunscreens should be used on babies over six months of age.)

Avoid harsh sun and tanning.

Avoid getting a sunburned at all costs. Skip the tanning and never use UV tanning beds. The sun is strongest between 10AM and 4PM, so try to avoid the sun during these hours and find some shade. Make sure to keep newborns out of the sun.

DETECT

Perform a head-to-toe self exam.

The Skin Cancer Foundation recommends everyone practices a self examination every month.  Skin cancers found and removed early are, more often than not, curable. You may find having a doctor perform the initial examination will help assure you that any existing spots, moles or freckles are totally normal and treat any that aren’t. After that a routine self exam shouldn’t take you longer than 10 minutes.

Get your partner involved.

In addition to seeing your physician annually for a professional skin exam, have your partner keep an eye out for any changes in your skin. Sometimes they see parts of our bodies that we don’t see everyday (like the small of our back or behind your neck). Have a discussion about the importance of paying attention to changes in your skin and make sure you return the favor by keeping an eye on any changes on their skin.

Get regular massages.

First, you should know, it’s not up to your massage therapist to check you for signs of cancer, but it definitely can’t hurt having an extra set of eyes on you! When you are a receiving regular massages, as your massage therapist, I will become familiar with your body and all the little markings that go with it. Sometimes, a massage therapist is a first line of defence since I will notice if a birthmark, freckle, or mole has changed size or shape.  

Prevention is only half the battle. And hopefully it’s the only battle you will ever face. If you should happen to find yourself in a different battle, the early detection of skin cancer is paramount. The sooner you catch it, the better your chances are of beating it.

Enjoy your summer, but remember to protect yourself from the sun and bring ANYTHING suspicious to your doctor immediately.

Love  & light!

Naomi

Love your skin!

Stress? What Stress… We got THIS!

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For stress awareness and national anxiety month, I want to pass along some tips to calm those nerves. First, let me say by no means am I a stress expert. Though, I have had my fair share of it, along with the rest of the world. In fact with all that is going on in current news we all should take 5 minutes a day to get back to our center, so we can fully handle what life is going to offer!

  • Exercise: Go for a walk, a bike ride. Do jumping jacks anything to get that blood pumping and flowing bringing all the good oxygenated blood throughout your entire body!
  •  Get regular sleep: Being tired and cranky can always make for a bad stressful situation. Prevent the stress blues by catching up on your ZZZ’s.
  • Massage!!  Keep up with massage maintenance!!

 Finally last one! It’s so simple you may laugh… BREATHE… YES! 

“But I am breathing, all the time in fact!” You say!

Well yes my friend you are, surely you are! You are alive and reading this!(thank you)  BUT, with this fast paced society we live in we don’t really take the time to ‘just breathe’. I mean deep down into your gut breathe. Pushing your inhale down into your belly, imagining, this breath, as a hand inside pushing your belly button out. What you are feeling is your diaphragm expanding. Now slowly exhale, being mindful, that upon exhaling you are bringing your belly button back into your spine. Try again! Deep inhale of life-sustaining air, try not to raise your shoulders, you are breathing into your gut. Exhale slow, steady. How do you feel? Life doesn’t have to be stressful. Breathe and know that our universe has this path for you and you’re exactly where you need to be at this very moment!   

Love and light,

Naomi

Stress? What Stress… We got THIS!

Brave Warrior

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It’s a sad one, but it does need to be mentioned. It wasn’t even a year ago that I was just scrolling through my Facebook feed and I saw what one would not want to ever see on any of their family, friends, or Facebook acquaintance posts.  

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It is the photo to the right, showing results of an X Ray that were so devastating there were no words.  Facebook has brought our society, in a way, closer. We are connected to people more now than when we were in third grade. I never thought it was possible to be so affected by a photo that was shared on a sunny day in Aprli, from a Facebook acquaintance that lives across the country. I took one look, the scrolling stopped. My heart sunk. My stomach knotted. It was awful. It was one of those feelings that no matter what the diagnosis was there is no way, this person is going to make it without some sort of MIRACLE. Then she went into more detail of whose X-ray photo this was. Her 8 yr old step-son, a third grader. (My two are 6,9 at the time) I was heartbroken. No human should experience their cells turning against them, completely backfiring against the natural balance of science. It was unfair. I cried for the boy. I cried for his family. I sent them long distance love and light. I didn’t even know these people. I followed a warrior page for Sawyer, fittingly called Sawyer’s Warriors. I followed his journey through radiation, chemo, surgeries. The poor kid, I thought. The poor family. His moms, dad, siblings, why them? Why anyone? But that’s not what this bright kid was representing. Everything the kid went through, he showed an unbelievable amount of strength, love for life, love for his family, love for himself, love for turtles, the Seahawks, beaches, cereal, laughter, and many more!  His spirit shone bright through his glimmering smile!!

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Burkitt’s lymphoma is humanities fastest growing cancerous tumor. It is a tumor that is capable of doubling in just 24 hours. The experience with Burkitt’s lymphoma is very intimidating and frightening. We seek to bring peace to the struggle by sharing experiences, information and hope to others who seek it.

Burkitt’s lymphoma accounts for as many as 40% of all childhood non Hodgkin lymphoma patients worldwide. It also accounts for as many as 40% of all non-Hodgkin lymphomas in HIV/AIDS patients. It can affect adults too and in the US more than 50% of all Burkitt’s lymphoma patients each year are adults. There are three classifications for Burkitt’s lymphoma. Immunodeficiency Burkitt’s is basically related to transplant patients and HIV/Aids patients. Endemic Burkitt’s which is associated to equatorial Africa and the Sporadic form of Burkitt’s that is “sporadic” or it just doesn’t fall into the other two classifications. The current cause of all Burkitt’s lymphoma is not known. It is known that it is DNA mutations, but what triggers these mutations is not known, but with the progress in DNA studies they are getting closer.

Source: Burkitt Lymphoma Society

Despite everything Sawyer went through, the physical changes that never once altered the boys handsome smile! Childhood cancers are no JOKE.

It’s the attitude of hope, love and family that I am expressing. Live your days like there is nothing out there that can knock you down. Live with spunk, love, laughter, and bravery! Each day, push through, persevere,  even though the outcome may seem dark .  The smile will always brighten the way!

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After surgery
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The smile, on his was to radiation
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So much thinking for a 9 yr old.

To learn more about Sawyer and what can be done to bring awareness to childhood cancers.  Check out the Facebook  Warrior page! Here

Also if you would like to see the journal written by his Mother click here! 

 

Love and light,

Naomi

Brave Warrior

Nutritional Charm!

March has National: banana cream pie, peanut cluster, pancake, blueberry popover, pi(3.14) baked scallop, potato chip, sloppy joe,chocolate caramel, ravioli, chocolate covered raisins (WHY??) and clam on the halfshell Day!

Not so nutritional for national nutrition month!!  

Yes! That’s right March is National Nutrition Month! Seems fitting since it is only two months after the “New Year Better You Resolution” month, and how can we forget last month, “let’s stuff our mouth with day after chocolate because it’s on sale don’t judge me!” So yes! The third month of the year has a healthy charm! (Wait is that where the leprechaun came into play?)

Nutrition, oh right!  

Nutrition: is a healthy diet that nourishes the body! “Nourish the body” sounds good doesn’t it!! How does one go ahead and “nourish” the body? Eat a well balanced diet consisting of foods that are geared toward your lifestyle,  taste, and medical needs. Easy enough, Right?!  I know just how difficult staying on the healthy food track can be! One of the main struggles in my life has been with food. Kinda the eating too much of it, part!

Last summer I tore my Right ACL, and recently, I fell. Sprained my right knee so good that, I was bruised down the length of my lower leg, on crutches for a week. Had x-rays taken, an MRI, and now I have started physical therapy. With all this down time, I began noticing just how much ice cream your massage therapist eats, jimmies included. How much pasta, the amounts of cheese, and the random pieces of chocolate; which the wrappers added up. (Gee! Thinking back  I could have made a new holster for my oil bottle!!) Needless to say it was A LOT!!! Too much, ENOUGH IS  ENOUGH!!  

How to choose a nutritional diet for you? I’m not a nutrition expert! I can google, and I have faith that you can as well! I know I have the general idea of more veggies, keep it green, fruits, proteins and limit carbs and fats. This is how I was brought up. Yet I always knew where the stash of candy was, at the store!!! Back then I could walk to the store by myself! It evened out, I walked the eating off.

As I’m trying to learn all I can about Polarity, I remembered back to my Level 1 training that The founder of Polarity Therapy, Dr. Randolph Stone, spoke about the importance of the energy of the foods going into our bodies. “The amount of food put into the stomach at one time, the quality, the combination, and at what temperature, are all important factors in the process of digestion” Health Building.

Looking deeper into the energetic compounds of the elemental pathways. Understanding what may be off and knowing which food to eat to supplement that energetic imbalance is something that I look forward into researching more and fully understanding! Another diet I found intersting and something I would be looking further into is a diet based on your blood type. Now doesn’t that kind of make sense? Why not eat according to how your body is made up, That’s earth for you. (Maybe more on that later)

I am just a massage therapist, a mother, a human that is just as curious as everyone else in this universe!  I am in no way promoting any of these. Always check with a doctor before any exercise and diet changes.

Love and Light!

Naomi

Nutritional Charm!