Archive for the ‘Health and Wellness’ Category

Baby Boomers are getting older, living longer but with growing rates of obesity, diabetes and other chronic diseases. Not exactly the picture of enjoying a healthy, vibrant future for those in their silver or golden years. In fact, those turning 65 today “are more likely to live longer than their parents and grandparents, and much more likely to live sicker for a longer period of time,” commented Dr. Rhonda Randall, a senior adviser to the not-for-profit United Health Foundation which commissioned America’s  Health Rankings® Senior Edition: A Call to Action for Individuals & Their  Communities

This research confirmed that a serious health care crisis is brewing and vital for implementing strategies especially now since America’s senior population will grow by more than 50 percent in the next 15 years.

America’s Health Rankings has tracked the health of the nation for the past 23 years, offering insights into American health as well as state-by-state. The 2012 report suggests Americans are struggling to change unhealthy behaviors such as smoking and obesity, at the root of many health problems but challenging to get needed results. Read the rest of this entry »

Have you noticed the alarming increase in people suffering from chronic health issues? Obesity on the rise including young children, along with diabetes, allergies, autism, many cancers, autoimmune issues, and so much more.  

Our health is at stake and much of it at the root of our food supply which has changed dramatically over the last few decades with the introduction of Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) and without adequately testing their impact on human health or our environment.  As a result, with GMOs now unleashed into our food system, the American food industry is producing products with potential to negatively impact the health of us all. Read the rest of this entry »

In reorganizing my communication files tonight, bulging from years of researching and presenting Get Along programs, I came upon a button that reads, “I’m not bossy. I just have better ideas.” Know anyone who wears this invisible message and then complains of lack of cooperation? Indeed, it’s a big communication crusher when somebody tunes out or invalidates our opinions.

People need to feel they’re being heard and their opinions honored. When our ideas are discredited, it often crushes feelings of capability, makes us angry and creates bad connections. Criticizing or negating ideas can be deadly because it violates our universal need for respect. Think in terms of honoring both egos and ideas. For instance, when someone says, “That’s a really dumb idea!” it gets very personal because their ideas are being discounted and that stirs up a range of responses from anger to embarrassment. Keeping face keeps productive communication flowing. Providing a reason for your perspective instead of any inflammatory remarks allows others to have a better idea where you’re coming from. A face-saving alternative that avoids personal attacks would be,“That idea would cost an extra $50,000 which isn’t in our budget.” This focuses the issue on dollars, not egos.

Resistance sets up polarities—the more you resist, the more others push back and hold firm in their positions. Likewise, the greater the acceptance you express, the more flexibility they will feel, since you’ve honored their need to be heard and respected. You don’t have to like their ideas, you just need to hear and respect their thoughts.

Some responses instantly evoke antagonism, contempt, or animosity, all putting respect in jeopardy:

ž  “Do you really know what you’re saying?”

ž  “You’ve got to be kidding!”

ž  “Oh no, that would never work!”

ž  “Do you know what a stupid idea that would be?”

ž  “You can’t really want that!”

ž  “You can’t be serious!”

ž  “You’re crazy! You want what?”

ž  “Don’t be crazy … ridiculous … stupid … !”

ž  “You don’t know what you’re talking about!”

While you may be tempted at times to fling those phrases when others might deserve them, that won’t get what you likely want–less stress, teamwork, greater harmony, and cooperation. Providing an opportunity for a healthy exchange of ideas creates a safe environment to explore creative solutions, build respect and cooperation.


This morning I received one of those friendship emails, how the bond of friendship sustains us through life’s twists and turns, celebrations and challenges of life, and passed it on to those who have done exactly that. Then, an hour later, I got a call from a dear long-time friend, cancelling her birthday celebration tomorrow, having to deal with the crazymaking throes of her mother’s dementia living hours away. A disappointment because we don’t get to see one another often enough, but more importantly she needs a big dose of R & R because her stress level is tipping the scales in the danger zone between her mom’s care issues, son’s job search and work overload.

Times like this call for more than a Facebook update status. What undoubtedly would help in boosting sagging spirits is a”cappucino connection,” that utterly delicious blending of friends coming together to share a slice of time (and maybe something chocolate to take away some of the stress and heartache)—in a bottomless cup of comfort that lingers long after the last drop. Read the rest of this entry »

Many of us in the Washington DC metro area are still without power, days after the ferocity of Friday’s storm put millions of us in the dark. It perfectly coincided with record-breaking heat. No power + record heat = long days of misery and nights without any flickers of light. This is a ripe opportunity for dealing with “what is”, when unexpected events slam into your life requiring adaptability and some serious attitude adjusting.

Take away our electricity and our lives are instantly changed–far beyond the creature comforts of staying cool when it’s sizzling outside, keeping refrigerated  foods fresh or out of the dark when light is desired. Every time I forget what I don’t have and flick a switch out of habit, it’s a gentle reminder of gratitude for the things taken so much for granted. Living in a plugged in, wired up world of convenience, instant accessibility, work from anywhere, efficiency and countless other ways, what a lesson in adapability and attitude adjustment when it all goes kaput! Read the rest of this entry »

weight loss, health & wellnessIt’s truly heartening to see the Mega Mouse empire of The Walt Disney Co. take a stand in support of healthier food choices for kids and do something about it. Not just lip service but a plan in place for throwing out junk food advertising and the millions of lost revenue that goes with that committment, to help kids make healthier choices.

It definitely takes more than a village to impact global health with all of its complexities and the growing incidence of childhood obesity.  With Michelle Obama in attendance who’s championing fighting chidhood obesity, Disney Chairman and CEO, Roger Iger, announced earlier this week that Disney would ban all junk-food advertising, including from their Disney cable network and Saturday morning shows on ABC, with plans to take effect in 2015, the delay due to contractual arrangements with advertisers.

“We’ve taken steps across our company to support better choices for families and now, we’re taking the next important step forward by setting new food advertising standards for kids,” commented Iger. The new plan will follow nutritional guidelines similar to federal standards promoting fruit and vegetable consumption, limiting calories and reducing saturated fat, sodium and sugar.

We’re all ears, Disney, in hearing more about your committment for impacting healthier destinies. Hopefully, your leadership will inspire other companies to follow your lead with messaging that supports wellness for kids so they grow up making choices for delighting in a world of wellness and well-being. That is indeed the Magic Kingdom, when your world is filled with possibilities and you’ve got your health to make your dreams come true.



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