Daily Inspiration for the Mind
Over 5% of the world’s population suffers from depressive episodes. You are not alone. Try to connect with friends or family. Talk to someone. Take a mental health day when you need it.
There is no shame in knowing when you are struggling. Mental illness is not a sign of weakness. It takes a lot of strength to seek out the help you need. You are courageous. You are strong. And you will persevere.
What you put in your body is what you get out of it. If you are eating low-nutrient, high-calorie foods, your body is not getting what it needs. Our physical state transfers over into our mental state. You won't feel well, and your mood may plummet.
Eat a healthy and balanced diet. Research what nutrients you require on a daily basis and try your best to reach the recommended amounts. Try mood-boosting foods, such as avocado, mushrooms, and nuts. Eat better and feel better!
Having a pet can provide helpful and healing health benefits. While it seems like a no-brainer that coming home after a hard day to a loving creature who thinks the sun rises and sets based on your command is incredibly heart warming, there are a surprising amount of studies that show the scientific reason for this. The unconditional love Whiskers and Fido provide us can help those of us with self-esteem issues, and logging tummy-rubs and cuddle time can lower our blood pressure and reduce stress.
When we spend time with our pets, our body releases the calming hormone oxytocin, which can counteract stress hormone cortisol. It's no wonder we feel calmer when we see those furry faces! We knew they were good for our hearts, who knew they were so good for our health?
What's going on in our bodies when we get stressed?
When we sense danger in some form, our bodies release a whole whack of hormones (namely adrenaline, cortisol, and noradrenaline), all of which are dumped into our systems to help us battle a perceived threat.
The fight/flight/freeze response was helpful when we were dealing with sabre-toothed tigers and beating off competitors for food and mates; nowadays, though, our physical safety is threatened much less often, but this evolutionary response remains nonetheless. When we feel scared or threatened somehow but no physical danger is actually present, our bodies still prepare for fight/flight/freeze. Our heart rate increases, we might tense up, hyperventilate, sweat, cry, or begin to panic, despite the fact that we're really in no danger at all.
Stress balls, daily meditation, yoga and exercise are just a few things that can help us release some of this built-up tension.
Aromatherapy is an easy way to relieve stress, appealing to your sense of smell and easing you into feeling more relaxed. Stress candles, incense, tea, oils or creams are all products that can help to bring soothing scent into your world, and each can be used in different ways.
Ylang ylang, rose, lavendar, vetiver and chamomile are all aromas thought to relieve stress. Using these scents as essential oils in your bath, during a massage therapy session or in a diffuser can have dramatic effect. Inhaling deeply while using these oils can enhance the effect and can even be a benefit when you're drinking chamomile tea, rubbing in cream or indulging in a foot bath, which has relaxing effects of its own!
A daily meditation practice can relieve stress and reset your mental state.
Those who practice regular meditation had higher brain activity in the areas that deal with stress and concentration. Healthy ways to manage stress can help ease depression and anxiety. Making meditation more accessible has even been suggested as part of Canada's mental health strategy.
Meditate for 5 minutes each morning to calm your mind. Be kind to yourself. Make your mental health a priority!
Daily Inspiration for the Body
Did you know the majority of people would say they are not getting enough sleep? While more men than women dream about catching extra zzz's, it seems we all could use more sleep in general. Other than considering your late night Netflix habit, how can you tell if you aren't sleeping enough?
Are you finding you're more hungry than usual? Are you making poorly thought out decisions or having a hard time remembering people's names or even what you did last Tuesday? Sleep deprivation brings many negative effects into our lives, but memory loss, impulsiveness and increased appetite are a few of the more obvious ones.
Losing sleep can have a haphazard effect on how we process emotional events and how we respond to stressful situations. Harvard Medical School has found a link between sleep deprivation and psychosis, or a loss of contact with reality.
While there are definitely extremes when it comes to the definition of that word, at the core, it indicates that the more sleep deprived we are, the less we are able to trust our perspective, and when faced with something that elicits an emotional response, we are less likely to be able to react rationally to control our reaction, or even to interpret it properly.
Did you know that good nutrition will act on the functioning of your brain? Nutrition can play a significant role in maintaining and even improving these functions. More than 40 nutrients are involved in the functioning of the brain. In this regard, it is also important to ensure adequate intake of macronutrients (Proteins, carbohydrates and fats) and micronutrients (Vitamins and minerals).
Proper nutrition can make our memory and concentration more efficient and help maintain our energy throughout the day.
Did you know you can self-impose a sleeping disorder? Psychophysiologic insomnia is one of the most common and difficult types of sleep disorder to treat. When you worry about not getting enough sleep, lying there thinking about it can start a cycle of sleeplessness and anxiety that can cause weight gain, stress and insomnia.
The next time you've had no rest, try not to stress about it when you get back under the covers the following night. Reading a book, having a warm bath and listening to music can help you stop thinking about sleeping, and actually give you some shuteye before you work yourself up into a larger issue!
Taking the time to eat is advice that may seem simple, but doing so will make all the difference. This will allow you to be more attentive to your hunger and feelings of satiation which, may take longer to manifest.
When we eat in front of the computer or the television, our attention is diverted from our body's signals, making it difficult to detect them. We often eat faster and it’s easy to consume all the contents of our plate without even appreciating it. Intentionally slowing down and taking the time to notice when you are actually full and don't need to keep eating is a great way to practice intuitive eating.
Sugar is found in most foods sold in grocery stores, as are carbohydrates. Both will affect your blood sugar levels and too much of either can increase the glucose in your body. Taking the time to read the labels will help you better control what you eat.
If you see that sugar is one of the first ingredients listed, put it back on the shelf and look for a low-carbohydrate product that will give you a better fiber and vitamin intake, and keep your blood sugar levels at a more reasonable number.
Daily Inspiration for the Soul
Today's Mantra: "I confidently step into my soul's purpose. Every breath I take fills me with courage as I align with my calling."
Today's Mantra: "When I want to change my life, I see the reality I am creating in my mind and take action to make magic happen."
Do you feel heartbroken? Your nerves respond to emotional trauma the way the body responds to physical trauma and healing the energy in your heart chakra can help you finally release your pain and recover. Eating lots of green foods like cucumber, spinach and green apples will stimulate your Heart chakra back into balance.
Certain crystals also help heal your Heart chakra, such as rose quartz and aventurine.
A combination of green foods, crystals, and heart-opening stretches that make your spine more flexible will help you mend a broken heart. When a relationship is damaged, even if it's your relationship with yourself, it's important to make an effort to repair the energy field so we can remain open and optimistic.
Do you have trouble speaking your mind? Balancing your Throat chakra can help you be more vocal and stick up for yourself. Lots of people go their whole lives without actually saying how they feel even though it's incredibly good for our health and relationships.
Eating blueberries and blackberries can help you stimulate the Throat chakra so you can communicate better. Wearing blue lapis lazuli stones as well as turquoise or blue-coloured clothing can help us balance an overactive or underactive Throat chakra. If it's overactive, you may be speaking without thinking, which can drain us of our vital energy.
Stretching the neck in yoga poses (such as plow pose) can also help balance your Throat chakra so you can find your voice!
Do you feel broken-hearted? Here's how to heal your Heart chakra.
The nerves respond to emotional trauma just as our body responds to physical trauma and needs to be healed. Getting healthy, high-vibe energy to flow through your heart can be done by using heart-opening mantras or doing yoga poses that stimulate the muscles in the surrounding area, like upward-facing dog, wheel pose, and forward bends.
Focus on self-love affirmations like, "I release the pain from past relationships and forgive the people in my past. I am open to healthy relationships."
Bring more of the color green into your life through decorations, clothes, and accessories to solidify your intention and increase the strength of the Heart chakra's energy.
Today's Mantra: "I am strong, I help people see the strength in themselves. I am a humble and find my self worth in my values and virtues and not external appearances."