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CHeadrickTherapist’s Corner…
Life As It Is
 

At the beginning of April my best and nearly life-long friend died. I knew she was ill with several conditions, and she was in the hospital 2 weeks before she died, but that she was so near death was not on my radar at all.
     To say that the last 3 months have been mostly a “fog” for me is an understatement! After a shock to one’s system like that, where does one start? How does one think? Can feelings and emotions really change that quickly, or that many times in one 24-hour period of time? I argue with myself - I wouldn’t want her to come back because I believe Heaven is far better, and yet I so want to tell her so many miscellaneous details (you’ll never guess who I saw today, etc.) and would love to give her one more hug, tell her one more time why she is so special, and a million other things.
     As I have traveled through life’s events, I have always been able to look back to my memory store for the “Mother would say” section, where I would find wisdom about how to think about and/or navigate the situation I found myself in.
     With this experience, I realized that I have very little “Mother’s wisdom” to draw from. Mother was a woman of great Faith and I know she would never question “God’s will” in any situation. My father was killed in a private plane crash just days before I was born, and mother has told me the story many times. I am their first and only child. She was always proud to end the story with something like, “and then you were born, and I had to give my attention to taking care of you”. Perhaps that is part of the wisdom that I need –to be intentionally more mindful of, and attentive to, the needs of those around me instead of focusing on myself.
     The one thing I am sure of is that the process of grieving is very different from one situation to another, even when done by the same person (maybe that’s why Mother didn’t have ‘bits of wisdom” about it!), and that it isn’t easy. I was fortunate to see a quote that seems to sum up a lot of the reality – at least for this stage of my grief. It says, “Peace is the result of retraining your mind to process life as it is, rather than as you think it should be”. Wayne W. Dyer
     Sending positive energy to all of you who are also in process of trying to navigate an experience of grief at this time! Any of us here at Family Resources would be honored to help you if you would like!

~Carlene Headrick, Therapist

Waddington TracyTherapist’s Corner…
Bringing Inner Peace Into Your Life 

My focus in writing this monthly newsletter is in giving ourselves permission to be deserving of rest, peace, and relaxation. Like so many of us, I too have struggled to give myself permission to stop, pause, and think, about the ways in which I am leading my daily life. So many times we can become so overloaded in doing for others, that we often forget to do for ourselves. Learning how to incorporate peacefulness and relaxation into our lives is vital in keeping us energized, motivated, and inspired in meeting the daily demands of everyday life. One of my favorite blogs to read is by Henrik Edberg who writes the “Positivity Blog” that I find great information for my own health and well-being, as well as being able to be reminded to make time for myself, so that I may continue to be a good teacher to those around me, whom I love and adore as well! Practice these objectives daily that Henrik shares shares and reveals:     1. Set limits. If your life is overfilled with stuff you may need to set some limits. You may need to stop doing some of the least important things, the things that if you are honest really don’t matter that much. Don’t hold yourself to “perfect” standards. And set a limit for how many times you will check inboxes, Facebook, Twitter etc. per day. Checking on stuff all the time creates a lot of stress. And say no if you really don’t have the time.
     2. Find a relaxation technique that works for you. I like belly breathing and working out to release tensions and recharge during the day. What works for you? Long walks, music, yoga, meditation or going for a swim? Find out and do that.
     3. Don’t make mountains out of molehills. This can create a lot of unnecessary stress. When facing what looks like a mountain then ask yourself questions like: Does someone on the planet have it worse than me? Will this matter in 5 years? These questions help you zoom out and realize that in most cases things aren’t really that bad and you can handle them.
     4. Slow down. Your emotions work backwards too. If you slow down while walking, moving your body or talking you can often start to feel less stressed (compared to if you move/talk fast). Slowing down to decrease stress goes for many other things you do in everyday life too like riding your bicycle, driving the car, working at your desk and eating.
     5. Declutter your world, declutter your mind. Just take 5 minutes to declutter your workspace or the room you are in. A decluttered, simplified and ordered space around you brings clarity and order to the mind. So don’t stop at the workspace or the room you are in. Declutter, simplify and organize your home and life too to live in a more relaxing environment.
     6. Use a minimalistic workspace. My work space is just a laptop on a small black desk made out of wood. I use a comfy chair and there is room for my glass of water beside the computer. That’s it. There are no distractions here. Just me, the computer and the water. This brings peace and makes it easier to focus during my working hours.
     7. Accept and let go. Now is now. But if something negative from the past – something someone said, something someone did – is still in your mind then accept and let that feeling and thought in instead of trying to push it away. When it is there, when you accept that it is then it starts to lose power. And while the facts may still be there in your head the negative feelings are much less powerful or gone. At this point, let that thing go like you are throwing out a bag of old clothes. And direct your focus to the present moment and something better instead.
     8. Escape for a while. Read a novel (I like twisty thrillers), watch your favorite TV-show or a movie. It’s simple but it works well to just release pressure and relax.
     9. Solve a problem that is weighing down on you. Don’t procrastinate anymore. Solve your problem and release it and all the underlying stress and tension that it is creating in your life. You probably already know what to do, you are just not doing it yet. But the longer you wait the worse the tension inside becomes. So get up from your chair and get started on doing it now.
     10. Breathe. When stressed, lost in a problem or the past or future in your mind breathe with your belly for two minutes and just focus on the air going in and out. This will calm your body down and bring your mind back into the present moment again.

~ Tracy Waddington, Therapist

HainATips from Our EAP…
Exercise 

Getting the appropriate amount of exercise benefits nearly all aspects of a person’s health. Not only does exercise help control weight, it also improves mental health, mood, chances of living longer, and the strength of your bones and muscles.
     Adults ages 18 and over (including older adults) need at least 2½ hours of moderate aerobic activity each week and muscle strengthening exercises twice a week. Children and adolescents need an hour of physical activity every day, with vigorous activity at least 3 days each week. They also need muscle and bone strengthening exercises at least 3 days of the week.
     Moderate intensive activities include briskly walking, gardening, playing doubles tennis or a leisurely bike ride. Vigorous intensive activities include jogging, running, swimming laps, jumping rope, hiking or group activities like Zumba or step aerobics. Muscle-strengthening activities to include in your routine twice a week include yoga, lifting weights, resistance band exercises and body-weight resistance activities like push ups and sit ups. You don’t have to spend hours on a treadmill each day to meet the recommended amounts of physical activity. Ten minutes of moderate or 
Exercise…
vigorous activity at a time 15 times a week (roughly twice a day) will take care of it.
     Not getting enough exercise puts you at increased risk for cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, metabolic syndrome, high blood pressure and some cancers. Additionally, if you sit or stand for too long, you are more likely to have back pain, so it is important to alternate standing and sitting throughout the day and make sure to move around periodically.
     Boost your workout and maintain motivation with music: Dr. Costas Karageorghis, deputy head (research) of the School of Sport and Education at Brunel University in London, suggests warming up with songs that are 80-90 beats-per-minute (bpm) and working up to a tempo of 120-140 bpm. See how many beats-per-minute are in your favorite songs at www.songbpm.com.

Anna Hain, EAP Program Director

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