Thursday, December 26, 2013

What's Your Feeling on This?

How’s it going? Have the holidays treated you well? Mine have been rather chaotic.

First, I received late notice that my building was going to be closed on unexpected days, so I had to cancel a few client appointments for those days. Then, the AC/Heat went out in the building and I was forced to cancel more appointments. Then, my five year old got sick and I had to cancel out the last few remaining appointments of the year. Not to mention I had family in town, Christmas shopping (and wrapping) to get done, a dinner party to cook for, AND an office to move, too!

I felt VERY out of control and uneasy. And, I don’t LIKE feeling out of control. Who does?

Lucky for me, Lexi is a resilient child and felt better after just a few days (I think the thought of Christmas Day toys had a lot to do with it. LOL!), and I was able to take some time to chill, meditate and plan for my office move, and for the 2014 year.

As 2013 comes to a close I’ve been reflecting on this crazy year. To me it felt rushed. I always felt like I was playing “catch up” on personal things or business actions. But for me, January always brings a sense of revival and a clean slate.

So, as I planned for the coming year I thought about how I want to feel in 2014.

This was an “A-Ha” moment and here are some of the core desired feelings I came up with…

Uncomfortable (just a little)

This time of year is usually fraught with resolutions and goal setting; including the B-HAG (Big, Hairy, and Audacious Goal). By the way, I had to look up “audacious” in the dictionary… LOL!
Audacious: showing a willingness to take surprisingly bold risks.

Although I’m a HUGE fan of goal setting, I firmly believe it’s time to shift the focus from WHAT we want to accomplish to HOW we want our accomplishments to make us FEEL. What’s the point of reaching your boldest dreams, only to feel like a tired, burnt out piece of, well…. crap, once you’ve done it?

So, how DO you want to feel next year while you accomplish your Big Hairy Audacious Goals? Got any idea? It’s a huge task, I know.

But, if you haven’t considered how you want your goals to impact how you feel in 2014, make some time to do it this weekend. Dream HUGE! (Remember your goal is supposed to be audacious)

Then do me a favor; let me know what you’ve come up with. Seriously! I really do read your responses! Just reply to this email. Maybe I can help.

Anyway, from my family to yours; we wish you a safe, and very happy, New Year! Now, go ahead and eat a couple of those left over holiday cookies (tis the season) and don’t forget to share your B-HAG with me.

Be well, and always - Enjoy Your Life!

John Aaron Villarreal


P.S. I’m making a HUGE exciting (at least for me) announcement on January 6th and you will get 24-hour advanced notice before it goes public on January 7th. Talk about B-HAG… this is a B-HAG actualized.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Natural Ways to Relieve Migraines

The Migraine Research Foundation reveals that there are about 6 per cent of men who suffer from
migraines while 18% of American women have it. Richard Lipton, a neurology professor from the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City says that the causes of migraines can be 50 per cent genetics while the other half includes a lot of different environmental factors. If you are suffering from migraine, read further for some tips that will surely work.

Stick to a low-fat diet.
A study showed that participants who were on a low-fat diet for three months reported that their headaches reduced for up to 40%. And, by the time they experienced headaches, the pain was 66% less severe while its duration also reduced by 70 per cent.

Make time for exercise.
A 2011 research conducted from the University of Gothenburg, Sweden provided additional proof to the theory that exercise can be beneficial to migraine sufferers. The said research revealed that exercise is just as effective as topiramate in relieving headaches and migraines. Topiramate is the generic drug name that is commonly prescribed to people with migraines. In the said study, participants were asked to exercise using a stationary bike for 40 minutes three times in a week. After three months, the group of people who exercised and those who only took topiramate reported reduced migraine attacks. However, those who chose to take topiramate also experienced some side effects. Therefore, instead of relying on what medications can do, better opt to indulge in a regular exercise regimen.  But, be careful not to overdo it to avoid triggering your headache.

Try peppermint essential oil.
Peppermint essential oil is one of the cheapest and the most natural way to relieve an individual from the searing migraine attacks. Just dab a little on your temples and leave it there for thirty minutes or less and you will find yourself relieved from the pain. This sweet-smelling oil has anti-inflammatory properties that provide a soothing relief to the nerves.

Manage your stress levels.
Stress and its cousin anxiety are huge contributors to headaches and migraines. Unfortunately, many people are working too hard every day that they barely have enough time to take a break and slow down.  As a result, they always find themselves suffering from headaches.  Never wait for yourself to become all too stressed out.  Take a proactive approach against stress by evaluating just how much you can do in a day.  Start by checking your to-do list and see if something in there can be done the next day.  This way, you will not have to exhaust your physical and mental energy just to get these things done all in one day.

Practice relaxation techniques.
Headaches and migraines are often caused by not having enough time for relaxation.  As a result, they find themselves experiencing frequent headaches or migraine attacks. You may try indulging in Yoga exercises or just learn how to do transcendental meditation.  Of course, there are also easier and less complicated ways to relax such as sitting on the couch while listening to your favorite mellow music or hop in the bath tub for a soothing bubble bath. This just goes to say that relaxation is a very important part of one’s lifestyle and is a very effective way to ward off any symptoms of headaches and migraines.

Stick to your sleeping time.
Headaches and migraines are often hinged on sleep deprivation.  When you do not get enough sleep, your brain will not be able to defragment all those thoughts and memories leaving you with symptoms of anxiety, crankiness and intense headaches all throughout the day. This is why if you want to spare yourself from the debilitating pain caused by migraine, better come up with a definite sleep-wake routine.  A good night sleep will give your brain and body the chance to recharge and refresh so you would feel more relaxed, composed and calm the following day.

About the Author: Ryan Rivera loves to help his readers achieve a healthy lifestyle that is devoid of anxiety and other health problems.  For more effective health-related tips, just visit his Calm Clinic Google+ account.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Herbs and Spices Make Great Salt Substitutes

It’s been a general rule of thumb; less salt = lower blood pressure. So, why is it so difficult to use less of it at the table and in cooking? My guess is that we’re afraid to miss out on flavor. So, to avoid salt without sacrificing flavor, I have listed some of my tried and true remedies for you to add to your pantry. However, don’t be afraid to experiment with making your own seasoning blends. Just be sure to share your favorite blends with me.

Chinese five-spice blend for chicken, fish, or pork
Combine ¼ cup ground ginger, 2 tablespoons ground cinnamon, 2 teaspoons ground cloves, and 1 tablespoon each ground allspice and anise seed.

Mexican blend for chili, enchiladas, and tacos
Combine ¼ cup chili powder; 1 tablespoon each ground cumin and onion powder; 1 teaspoon each dried oregano, garlic powder, and red pepper; and ½ teaspoon cinnamon.

Mixed herbs for salads, steamed vegetables, or fish
Combine ¼ cup dried parsley, 2 tablespoons dried tarragon, and 1 tablespoon each dried oregano, dill weed, and celery flakes.

Hidden salt
In this age of tricky consumer marketing, it is doubly important to always check the nutrition labels of prepackaged foods for the amount of sodium it contains. Salt is commonly added as a preserving or flavoring agent in frozen entrees, luncheon meats, canned vegetables, and even frozen chicken and turkey breasts. So be careful!

Condiments like soy sauce, ketchup, mustard, pickles, MSG (monosodium glutamate), and some prepared seasonings typically contain lots of salt. Not to mention that restaurant and fast foods are notorious for containing high levels of salt.

Sodium causes the body to retain fluid, and this fluid retention is a major contributor to high blood pressure. Excessive water also means excessive body weight and inflammation that can produce physical pain. Experts recommend adults over forty limit daily sodium levels to 2,300 milligrams per day — the equivalent of about 1 tsp. of table salt. However, a lower sodium level — 1,500 mg a day — is appropriate for people 51 years of age or older, and individuals of any age who have already developed hypertension, diabetes or chronic kidney disease.

I know this doesn’t seem like much salt to work with, but that's because we have become so accustomed to the flavor of excessive salt in our foods. Once your palate has had a hance to re-adapt, you will begin to enjoy the actual flavor of the foods you are eating and the combinations of seasonings that naturally enhance the dining experience.

Stay fit. Eat healthy, and Always – Enjoy Your Life.

John Aaron Villarreal