Winter Solstice

Dana Brown

Dana Brown has created 4 entries
  • Self-Care: The Mental Health Benefits Of De-Stressing

    Every day, millions of Americans try to cope with stress, anxiety, mood disorders such as depression, and the physical issues that can be brought on by those feelings. For some, the stress that comes with everyday life can lead to issues at work or in school, problems within a relationship, and feelings of guilt or inadequacy when it comes to parenting. These are very real problems that can lead to bigger issues if left untreated, which is why it’s so important to practice self-care and de-stress once in a while.

    It’s different for everyone; what works for you may not work for someone else, so don’t be afraid to customize your routine. Whether you want to try a new workout regimen to burn off some of that negative energy or just carve time out of your busy schedule to sit down with a good book, make sure it’s something that makes you happy and relaxed.

     Here are a few tips on how to get started.

     Create Your Own Space

     Everyone needs their own space to relax in, especially if they have a large family. Create a place where you can go to relax. A meditation room can work wonders for your mood on those long days when nothing seems to be going right; all you need is a yoga mat or comfy chair, some soft lighting, and perhaps a scented fragrance oil or some relaxing music. This should be a place you can go when you need a few quiet moments to yourself, so don’t put in too many distractions. For some great tips on creating such a space, read on here.

     Get Some Good Sleep

     Adequate rest should leave you feeling like a million bucks when you wake up. Unfortunately, many of us face the day feeling groggy, achy, and wishing we could go back to bed. This could be due to a lack of good R.E.M. sleep, which can be caused by any number of things. For some, it’s the need to get up and use the bathroom in the middle of the night; for others, it’s a pet or partner who is restless in bed. Taking steps to get good sleep can help you feel more confident during the day and will keep you from feeling fatigued when you have a lot to get done, so cut off liquids an hour before you go to bed, turn off all electronics, and consider investing in a good mattress or pillows that will help you get restful sleep all night long.

     Just say no

     Being unable to say “no” to people when they ask for your time or attention can lead to quite a bit of stress. It’s important to learn how to deflect those situations when you’re feeling overwhelmed so you don’t take too much onto yourself. There’s no need to be rude; simply let the person know that you are currently at capacity where your time is concerned.

     Do Things You Love

     Spending your time doing things you enjoy is a great way to reduce stress, and the beauty is, you can change it up every day if you want. Sit down with a good book, go for a hike with your dog, start a garden, or play a game of basketball with your friends. Whatever it is you love to do, set aside some time to do it as often as you can.

     Practicing self-care is one of the best tools we have when it comes to reducing stress and living a long, healthy life. Talk to your family members about how they can help — for instance, not bothering you when you’re in your meditation room — and take time every day for yourself.

     About the Author

    Dana Brown is the creator of HealthConditions.info, which aims to provide Internet users with helpful content and resources that will lead them to make healthier decisions.

  • How to Help your Children Cope With Stress

    Adolescence and anxiety. The two seem to go hand in hand. From peer pressure to changing hormones, your kids have a lot to deal with as they grow into adults. To help your children through this tricky transition period, give them these helpful tools to keep anxiety from overcoming their life.

    Encourage Clean, Healthy Eating

    In adolescence, children begin to become more aware of their bodies. They perceive a real, although at times exaggerated, connection between the way their body looks and the way they and the world, perceive them. Instill a good sense of self-esteem early, but also help them choose healthy, wholesome foods at this critical point of growth and development. Many find peace in eating a vegetarian or vegan diet, which is full of health benefits. Help your children find their way to a strong, healthy body.

    Find Peaceful Ways to Relieve Their Stress

    Stress often becomes more prevalent in the lives of pre-teens and teenagers. Social pressures, school performance and internal stress can be overwhelming when left unchecked. As your children grow, teach them the skills they need to overcome daily stress. Deep breathingcan be a dependable way to relieve emotional strain. Having a healthy hobbycan help as well. Planting a garden, painting with oils or playing an instrument can have a positive impact on the way young people process stress. These creative hobbies can build self-esteem and mental acuity as well.

    Provide Tools to Build Positive Relationships

    As a parent, you set the tone for the relationships your children will form during their life. This is why it is essential to build a positive, calm bond between all members of your family. Encourage non-violent communicationwhen it comes to resolving sibling or parental arguments. Don’t yell or allow anger to influence the interactions your child experiences or sees. Teach your children the value of positive, loving relationships and be sure to observe the connections they make with friends and schoolmates. Studies show that negative or positive  pressure from peerscan have a great impact on those of adolescent age.

    Discuss Addiction Dangers

    Too often, the pressures and anxiety that children feel leads to them coping in negative ways. Drugs and alcohol are a real threat to the health of teenagers and pre-teens, so it is vital that you begin discussing addiction dangersat an early age. Have conversations about what is healthy and unhealthy when it comes to these possible toxins. Calmly convey your feelings on addiction and the well wishes you have for your children’s future.

    Maintain Spiritual Connections

    In this busy world, it can be easy to deprive our souls of the nourishment needed. Adolescents who don’t have a spiritual connection to themselves, or the world, may feel more confused and anxious. Ground your family’s everyday life in peaceful forms of spiritual practice. Make a family meditation space at home, or build each person their own space. Set aside a few moments of each day for every member of your family to come to their center and be thankful for the gifts they have. Teach your children how to remain mindful and find peace in their lives.

    Allow Time for Meaningful Rest

    We all need sleep to refresh our bodies and minds, but growing children may need more of it. Lack of sleep can lead to increased feelings of anxiety and stunted emotional growth. Ensure your children are getting the rest they need by setting a sleeping schedule early. Have your kids go to bed and wake up around the same time each day. Make their bedroom an oasis of comfort to help soothe them to sleep. Block out harsh lighting and keep the temperature cool at night. Use cool, natural fabricssuch as bamboo, for bedding and blankets.

    As a parent, your first instinct is to love and nurture your children. You can’t take all of their problems away but you can give them the tools they need to bring peace and calm back into their lives.

    Photo Credit: Unsplash

    About the Author:

    Dana is the creator of HealthConditions.info, which aims to provide Internet users with helpful content and resources that will lead them to making healthier decisions. Dana has 15 years of caregiving experience, and after seeing some patterns of poor health she became determined to help inform people about healthy living.

     

  • Making The Most Of A Bad Situation

    Using Holistic Methods To Grow From A Major Life Change

    Going through a major life change can have strong effects on your emotional, physical, and mental well-being, whether good or bad. It’s difficult to know how to move forward after such a change, especially if it involved the death of a loved one, a divorce, or a move to a new and unfamiliar town, because those events can alter us in unexpected ways. However, it’s important to learn how to cope and make those changes work for you, even if it seems like it’s in a limited way at first. Taking this opportunity to better yourself or your life can help you heal following such a major transition, and using holistic wellness techniques can have a major positive impact on your overall well-being.

    Here are some wonderful holistic approaches to wellness after a significant life change.

    Get organized

    Getting a divorce or making a big move can be extremely stressful; however, if you look at it as a chance to declutter and get organized, you’ll actually be helping to improve your mental state. Holding onto physical items from the past can keep you from moving forward, especially if there are strong memories attached to them. Go through your belongings and make a keep pile, a trash pile, and a donate pile, and think hard about what you want to keep. Letting go of some of those things — and perhaps finding a good home for them somewhere else — can help you move on after a major life change. Remember that you don’t have to get rid of everything; if there are several items that you don’t use much anymore but want to keep, consider boxing them up to go through at a later time when things have slowed down a bit and the task doesn’t feel as overwhelming.

    Give back

    Helping others can have a huge positive impact on your mental health and emotional well-being, and the time period following a big change in your life is one of the best times to get involved. You can use your own experiences to make a difference in the lives of others; for instance, if you lost a loved one to cancer, you might start a nonprofit that raises awareness about the disease, or sell your artwork and give the proceeds to a local hospice. Think about the best ways you can get involved in your community.

    Treat your body and your spirit right

    Many life changes bring stress and anxiety or even depression, so it’s important to focus on your health and use the time immediately following to get serious about the well-being of your body, mind, and soul. Daily exercise helps tremendously with stress and anxiety and can help you get into shape, if that’s what you’re after. Eating well-balanced meals with plenty of dark leafy greens is a good idea, too, as is getting enough rest. This can sometimes be easier said than done when you’re going through a rough time, so establish a bedtime routine that includes relaxation, such as taking a hot bath or lighting a lavender candle. Take a break from the screens — computer, phone, and television — before bed as well, as this can help you sleep better.

    Eliminate toxic relationships

     Going through a period of change in your life means you can really get to know who your real friends are. The people who are there for you and support you unconditionally are the ones you should maintain relationships with; anyone who only contributes toxicity to your life should be let go. Surround yourself with people who make you feel good and who you feel good being around.

    Holistic health in addiction recovery

    Perhaps one of the biggest life changes someone can experience is beginning a path to sobriety after struggling with an alcohol or drug addiction. Holistic therapies, especially when combined with the above tips, can be extremely beneficial to those in addiction recovery. Acupuncture and hypnosis are therapeutic and cathartic, and patients may see benefits as early as their first session. Activities like yoga and meditation can be performed alone or with a group, and can help establish a lifelong mindfulness practice that will be helpful on the journey to long-term sobriety.

    Remember that you may need someone to talk to during this transition period, so consider seeking a counselor or therapist who can help you get through it. Reach out when you’re feeling low, especially if you think you might be suffering from depression.

    Author: Dana Brown

  • Creating a Happy 2018

    …With Goals You Will Actually Keep

    The new year is upon us, and everyone is making New Year’s resolutions and setting goals. But according to Statistic Brain, only about 9 percent of people who set resolutions are successful at keeping them. So, what does that mean? Technically speaking, it means that New Year’s resolutions just don’t work. That’s why you need to create effective change in your life by creating sustainable goals that become habits and will lead to a healthy and positive 2018.

    Create Your Own Environment
    One of the things you can do right away is to create a relaxing and comforting home environment. In other words, set aside a room in your home without electronic distraction for your creative pursuits. Buy a comfortable chair, some paintings of nature, and other relaxing decor to inspire less stress. Also, consider adding an aromatherapy device, soothing fabrics, relaxing music, and greenery. Stress can lead to serious illness, and part of a healthy lifestyle is learning how to manage it effectively.

    Cut Down on TV Time
    Binging on your favorite Netflix show may seem like a relaxing activity, but studies actually show that this leads to increased depression and feelings of loneliness. According to CBS News, “binge-watching involves obsessed, intense, and dedicated behavior, characteristics indicative of addictive behaviors.” It also leads to other negative activities such as overeating, which can cause obesity, and a whole slew of other mental and physical health issues.

    Get Some Sleep
    Sleep is the time in which your body regenerates cells, and tissue recovers. That’s why sleep deprivation has been shown to be directly linked to a vast amount of health problems, such as diabetes, heart disease, and obesity. Make it a goal to get at least eight hours of sleep most nights of the week. If not getting enough sleep is a problem for you, try creating an environment solely for this purpose. In other words, banish things from your bedroom like TVs and laptops and add things like soothing colors and soft fabrics.

    Drink More Water
    Drinking more water is a fairly sustainable goal since most of us are drinking something throughout the day anyway. Just make the simple change of keeping a full bottle of water on your desk, and drink half your body weight in ounces every day. For example, if you weigh 160 pounds, make sure to drink 80 ounces of water. Not only will this replenish cells and keep your organs healthy, it will also keep your stomach full and reduce cravings.

    Practice Gratitude
    It may be hard to believe that the simple act of being thankful could have such a positive impact on your well-being, but according to Psychology Today, people who practice gratitude have more positive moods than those who don’t. They suggest doing things every day like writing in a gratitude journal, reflecting on people who have helped you, and taking walks in nature. Make this a daily habit, and you will be surprised at how much more optimistic you start to feel.

    Do Yoga
    Yoga is a more sustainable form of exercise than running or cycling, simply because of the more relaxed nature of it. But it’s one of those activities that will affect every part of your being positively, including body, mind, and spirit. In addition to the numerous health benefits of yoga, it also increases serotonin levels, leading to a happier and healthier state of mind.

    It’s important to think holistically when setting goals and creating healthy habits. If you can incorporate activities that benefit both your mind and body, you will be more likely to stick with them because of the incredible way they make you feel afterward. Most importantly, never try to change everything all at once. Avoiding burnout is one of the main keys in setting and sticking to goals.

    Author: Dana Brown