May Newsletter
Eat Well. Avoid Toxins, Be Happy!
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Finding Joy


This month, I invite you to wake up with joy and also to experience joy throughout the day as you meditate, breathe, eat, think, work and play.  The fabulous Tzivia Gover, author of "Joy in Every Moment," as joined us this month with some inspiration.

Enjoying Spring


Are you enjoying spring?  One of the best things about this time of year is the diversity of vegetables available at the local farmers' market.  Have you ventured out there yet or are you waiting for it to be just a little bit warmer (it has been a cold May).

Rather than offering a recipe this month, I thought I would offer some ideas and challenge you to share with me an interesting use of a fabulous, fresh vegetable.
  • Roast beets and then sauté the greens.  When I roast beets, I peel them, cut them into little bite sized pieces, add a little olive oil and roast them. My friend, Rebecca, coats them with olive oil, covers them in tin foil and roasts them whole -- removing the skin after they cook.  What do you do?
  • Explore garlic. My husband loves the early garlic greens and the elusive garlic scapes.  He eats them raw and chops them up and adds them to salads, eggs, and sandwiches.  I take the garlic head, cut off the top, add a dash of olive oil, wrap it in tin foil and roast it.  When it's done it makes a fabulous spread.
  • There is such a wide variety of greens available here in the south.  I cook them, chop them into salad, put them in smoothies, and add them to sandwiches.   I've read recently how important it is to wash greens carefully, do you wash your triple washed veggies?  Farmers' Market veggies?  I think it's always a good idea..
  • Avocados are a fruit, but always worth a shoutout.  Add them sliced to a sandwich, dice them into a salad, or eat them solo,  I celebrate the recognition that some kinds of fats are healthy, including the fat in an avocado.  Do you slice your avocado creatively like me, or carefully dice it into similarly shaped, bite sized chunks?
  • Most of all take joy in all aspects -- the selection, the preparation, and the eating.   Find the joy in eating fresh, healthy, delicious foods!

Enjoying Spring


Are you enjoying spring?  One of the best things about this time of year is the diversity of vegetables available at the local farmers' market.  Have you ventured out there yet or are you waiting for it to be just a little bit warmer (it has been a cold May).

Rather than offering a recipe this month, I thought I would offer some ideas and challenge you to share with me an interesting use of a fabulous, fresh vegetable.
  • Roast beets and then sauté the greens.  When I roast beets, I peel them, cut them into little bite sized pieces, add a little olive oil and roast them. My friend, Rebecca, coats them with olive oil, covers them in tin foil and roasts them whole -- removing the skin after they cook.  What do you do?
  • Explore garlic. My husband loves the early garlic greens and the elusive garlic scapes.  He eats them raw and chops them up and adds them to salads, eggs, and sandwiches.  I take the garlic head, cut off the top, add a dash of olive oil, wrap it in tin foil and roast it.  When it's done it makes a fabulous spread.
  • There is such a wide variety of greens available here in the south.  I cook them, chop them into salad, put them in smoothies, and add them to sandwiches.   I've read recently how important it is to wash greens carefully, do you wash your triple washed veggies?  Farmers' Market veggies?  I think it's always a good idea.
  • Avocados are a fruit, but always worth a shoutout.  Add them sliced to a sandwich, dice them into a salad, or eat them solo,  I celebrate the recognition that some kinds of fats are healthy, including the fat in an avocado.  Do you slice your avocado creatively like me, or carefully dice it into similarly shaped, bite sized chunks?
  • Most of all take joy in all aspects -- the selection, the preparation, and the eating.   Find the joy in eating fresh, healthy, delicious foods!

"you are a joy"

5 Rules to Help You Access the Happiness That’s Already Yours - By Tzivia Gover
 
I can’t remember what prompted me to ask the question, but I’ll never forget the answer. Several years back I asked my mother, “What was I like as a small child?”
 
She could have answered in any number of ways. For example, I remember my siblings called me a crybaby. My father, with a mix of love and impatience in his voice, used to call me a pest. I once overheard a family friend describe me as a nervous kid. I remember being bossy, moody, friendly, and studious.
 
So my mother's answer took me by surprise. Without hesitation she replied, “You were a joy.”
 
A joy? This was not what I’d been anticipating. I’d done years of therapy, read dozens of self-help books, and participated in countless self-growth classes, all of which I believed had made me into a somewhat happier person.
 
But after my mother’s pronouncement, that as a child I was already “a joy,” I had an epiphany: Underneath all of my labels, stories, selective memories, and assumptions about how others saw me, I already was the person I had been trying to become: I was a joy.

I have gotten a lot of mileage from this insight.  But for the epiphany to stick, I needed to put my new belief into practice—and I needed to practice holding onto it. That’s where those years of soaking up all of that self-growth wisdom, studying sacred texts from various faith traditions, and the science of happiness, came in handy. I drew on what I had learned to create Five Rules on the Road to Happiness. I offer them to you now, so you too can wake up to the joy that’s been yours all along.
  1. It’s your mood.
    You can increase your level of joy and happiness by choosing where to put your attention (on negative or positive thoughts, on people who uplift you or those who drain energy from you) and creating and maintaining positive intentions.
  2. It’s an inside job.
    No one else can make you happy. That’s good news because it means no one else can control of how you experience your life. The tricky part is that you need to take the initiative to consciously choose which thoughts and attitudes to focus on, and to choose healthy reactions to the people and events in your life.
  3. You can have it now.
    You don’t have to wait to get a new job, the perfect partner, or your dream house to feel good. External events, possessions, or situations don’t guarantee deep or long-term happiness—but a daily commitment to feeling better can.
  4. The pursuit is what we’re promised.
    No one can guarantee your good spirits because finding true contentment is an active and ongoing process — it’s never a done deal. Living a full and meaningful life requires attention, practice and a commitment to healthy ways of being.
  5. The fast track to feeling good.
    Yes, living a joyful life takes some effort, but it’s not hard work. Simply shifting your thoughts and feelings to gratitude and loving kindness are easy ways to connect with your joyous heart.
 
This piece is adapted from Joy in Every Moment (Storey Publishing) by Tzivia Gover. To join Tzivia’s “Wake it Up Week”, a free week-long e-subscription, contact her at tzivia.gover@gmail.com and type “Wake it Up Week” in the subject header of your email or sign up here

Find Joy - Avoid Toxic People

I spend a lot of time thinking about (and writing about) avoiding toxins in our personal care and home cleaning products.  But what about toxic people? Toxic energies? In my HeartMath® training, we learned about how the heart sends a magnetic field out from the body.  The goal of HeartMath®, which is a stress reduction tool (and so much more), is achieving a state called coherence.

The magnetic field created by a state of coherence is so powerful that if you hang out with people who are in a state of coherence, just by being with them you will become coherent, your stress level will go down, and the amount of DHEA (the happiness hormone) in your system will go up. 

So, why not hang out with happy people, people who make you feel good, people who say, as Shel Silverstein did: 
“Listen to the mustn'ts, child. Listen to the don'ts. Listen to the shouldn'ts, the impossibles, the won'ts. Listen to the never haves, then listen close to me... Anything can happen, child. Anything can be.”


When you spend time with people who believe that anything is possible and encourage you to dream, how does that make you feel? Is that how you want to feel? 

My years in IT and project management have taught me that it is important to think about the don'ts, to think about what could happen, to plan for contingencies, but the dreamer in me knows that to soar, to be awesome, to be me, I also have to believe that anything is possible.  Spending time with people who can help me soar is a joy.  Sometimes, even often, this means spending time with people who challenge my beliefs, who ask if something is truly possible, and that's great.  Spending time with people who are toxic to me however is not great.  Figuring out the difference between the two might be a lifelong journey. 




 
About me

As the president of Break Through Academy, I work with individuals and groups to help them achieve their life goals through making choices to eat well, avoid toxins and be happy.  As a strategic planning consultant, I work with organizations to improve performance through incorporating health and wellness into the fabric of their culture.
I am a Certified Holistic Health Coach, a strategic planning consultant, a distributor of Pure Haven Essential products, and a HeartMath coach.
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If you are receiving this newsletter for the first time. Welcome!  It is because I  met you at a workshop, we are contacts on LinkedIn, or you are a friend of my mother's.  Please continue to enjoy this newsletter at no charge, or you may unsubscribe below. Thanks! Wendy
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