Live :: Optimistically :: Through :: Universal :: Struggles
"The goal of meditation isn't to control your thoughts, it's to stop letting them control you. "
As we are in a few months into this pandemic, everyone has been more stressed out and anxious. Whether we are worried about finances, paranoid about contracting COVID 19 or struggling with dealing with finding our new normal, we can all use a little zen in our life. Meditation could be the calm to your chaos. I challenge you to join me in a meditation challenge! I know I know, it feels like we can't possibly take on more than we already have right now; but trust me, I promise this will help. The answer to all of this chaos is to focus within and focus on what we can control...our thoughts. Meditation is an integral part of controlling your inner peace and finding your zen. Any behavior that is done 21 days in a row becomes a habit.
Now, before you make any excuses, hear me out. Meditation can be done anywhere and at anytime! There is no perfect way to meditate. In fact, mediation is a practice, the more you do it the easier it becomes. Some people like to create a zen space (candles, crystals, and cushions); while others go into nature and connect to Mother Earth. Is it your first time meditating or have you struggled with being consistent with your practice, you can benefit from this meditation challenge. And my girl, Gabrielle Bernstein, is here to make your meditation easy peasy for you. All you need is 10 minutes a day. When you sign up for this challenge, you will receive daily emails with directions on your daily meditation and an audio recording. I am on day 3 and already have noticed how dedicating 10 minutes of my day have improved my sleep and mood. Now, who doesn't want that? Let's find our zen together!
Essential oils can help support your body to reduce stress and anxiety by relaxing your mind and body. Like a favorite candle, essential oils stimulate the smell receptors in your nose. This then send messages through the nervous system to the limbic system, the part of the brain that controls emotions.
Essential oils like lavender, wild orange and roman chamomile can help to relax your mind and body after a long day. Ever wonder why spas use specific aromas in their facilities and aromatherapy massages? More than just a good smell, essential oils can have a positive impact on your mood.
4 Tips to Relax After a Long Day:
1. Turn on your diffuser with a favorite uplifting or calming blend when you walk in the door. Fill your diffuser with water and add 5-8 drops of a desired oil or a combination of a few oils. Looking for something uplifting? Go for citrus and mint oils – lemon, lime, tangerine, grapefruit, peppermint, spearmint. Need something relaxing? Opt for florals and woods – lavender, geranium, white fir, cedarwood, vetiver, roman chamomile. Set the scene for your evening from the moment you get home.
2. Take a relaxing bath. Place a drop of Eucalyptus in the corner of your shower for an invigorating shower. Or, treat yourself and enjoy a soak in your tub with Epsom salts and a few drops of essential oils like lavender, rosemary or bergamot. Play relaxing music and relax as the stresses of the day wash away.
3. Add 1-2 drops of copaiba essential oil to water or tea to support the health of the cardiovascular, immune, digestive, nervous and respiratory system. Or, add a few drops to an empty veggie cap or take a ready-made copaiba softgel. Taking copaiba internally helps to soothe and calm the nervous system.
4. Place a drop of lavender or doTERRA’s Serenity blend on your pillowcase for a night of restful sleep. Turn on your bedroom diffuser 10 minutes before bedtime with a relaxing sleepy time blend to set the tone for a night of blissful sleep.
Written by: Michelle Fujii
For questions on essential oils she can be contacted here.
As we are adjusting to a new normal and constant health updates, we are all struggling with stress, fear and anxiety. With so many things being temporarily banned - the ability to eat in a restaurant, go to the beach, hang out with friends - we are all seeking ways to gain control of what we can. With hospitals reserved for COVID-19 patients and emergencies, the desire to stay healthy has become even more important.
Are you seeking safe and healthy ways to help cope with all these changes? Essential oils to the rescue! Essential oils are more than just a great smell, they can help to improve your emotional, mental and physical health.
What are essential oils?
Essential oils are extracted from different parts of plants and are 50-70 times more powerful than herbs. Essential oils have provided simple and powerful solutions throughout history.
How to use essential oils?
There are three ways to use essential oils:
1. Aromatically – Aromatherapy works by stimulating smell receptors in the nose. This then send messages through the nervous system to the limbic system, the part of the brain that controls emotions. (Ex: the smell of cookies baking = happiness)
a. Open a bottle and take a deep inhale
b. Place 3-5 drops in a diffuser
2. Topically – Essential oils are nutrients that penetrate the cell membrane. Unique chemical structure allows oils to pass directly through the skin for immediate systemic response to topical application.
a. Dilute with fractionated coconut oil and apply directly to area of concern or under the soles of your feet
b. Mix with unscented lotion for a customized essential oil lotion blend
3. Internally – Essential oils work with the body to address issues and root causes on a cellular level.They can affect the whole body – including the digestive system, mouth, throat, liver, and urogenital tract
a. Place a drop under your tongue or in a gel cap
b. Add a drop to your water, tea or favorite recipe
*Caution when taking essential oils internally. Not all brands are created equal, make sure the essential oils you are using are pure and safe to take internally.
Through these three simple ways, essential oils can quickly and effectively enter your body and improve your mental, physical and emotional health. The best part? Essential oils are derived from nature, and non-toxic and safe for you and your loved ones.
Consider turning to essential oils for the additional needed support you seek during these unprecedented times. Stay tuned to the next blog for essential oil recommendations!
Written by : Michelle Fujii
Exercise...it really does do a body and mind good!
5 reasons to implement a PE class with your kids:
1. Exercise builds immunity
2. Exercise improves mood
3. Exercise improves sleep
4. Exercise keeps us fit
5....because we all know we have been eating more baked goods and carbs then we typically do.
The American Heart Association strongly recommends that children get vigorous exercise at least 60 minutes every day. With the stay at home order in place, it is definitely harder for kids to get outside to get their exercise, but here are a few tips and ideas to get your kids moving an active...and remember the more exercise they get, the better they sleep and the better their mood will be. Who doesn't want their kids to be in a better mood, especially when we are stuck in the house with them 24/7.
There are many different websites and apps that are currently offering free workouts for adults and kids. Find ways to engage your kids in these exercises and do them with them. Are your kids climbing up the walls and need an outlet to relax their body and mind...try yoga. Use one of these printable yoga routines or pick up some yoga cards decks. My favorite is the angel bear yoga deck. Have your child choose a few cards a day, a few times a day (before school, after lunch and before bed) or end with a yoga kids book at bedtime.
I have always loved board games and use them regularly in sessions and in my personal life. At home, board games provide an opportunity for everyone to get off their devices, sit together and make new memories. In sessions, I use board games to engage kids and teens, and voila, therapy isn't as scary for them. We are still talking and working on the same issues, but there is something about getting on the floor with a child and stepping into their world. On top of building engagement, board games help children use problem solving skills. Each game helps kids practice critical thinking and impulse control, some even have the added bonus of practicing math.
I invite you during this pandemic to get on the floor with your children and step into their world. Play with them! Play can be way more than just a past time, it can be the avenue that opens up conversations, repairs/mends relationships and of course, builds new memories.
Dr. Shayna's top 5 games during quarantine
All 5 of these games help kids (...and adults) to improve think outside of the box (cognitive flexibility) and wait their turn, stop and think what their next move will be (impulse control). Trust me, invest in these games to make new memories with your family, keep them busy during this quarantine and support your child's problem solving skills.
What other games do you and your family play together?
Have you seen the moon lately? Last night, we couldn't help but stare at it's beauty. I honestly think with everyone staying home, the earth is healing itself. There is less pollution and the skies are clearer. Let's enjoy the positive changes in nature. Tonight's Pink Supermoon is said to be the biggest full moon of the year! A supermoon is a full moon that has orbited close to the Earth, making it larger than a typical full moon. Take your family outside to see its spectacular beauty. Here are some activities you can do with your family to celebrate April's Pink Supermoon.
Oreo cookie moon phase activity – this is a fun one! Use oreo cookies and cut out shapes of the moon from the yummy filling!
Moon phase worksheets – turn your moon viewing into a science class.
Moon journal – track the phases of the moon daily.
Aluminum foil moon art – have your toddler create a moon, use foil to create texture and make it a sensory activity
Moon dough – make homemade moon dough, as the phases of the mood change, have your child mold each phase of the moon.
Mosiac moon – use an old CD to create a mosaic moon.
Facts about the moon – have your kids read this website and create true or false questions, winner of the true and false game could win a prize.
Have you ever heard the saying - "laughter is the best medicine."
I have to admit, a good portion of my Sunday was going down the youtube rabbit hole. It all started with watching a Corona parody that quickly turned into this blog. I have highlighted a few videos that had me flat out laughing! If you need a good laugh, watch these youtube videos. Thank you to all the creative souls out there who are using their skills to put smiles on our faces during this crisis.
Happy Sunday! Hope everyone is hanging in there and making the best of their time at home. If you are running out of ideas to stay busy, I have created some bingo sheets. On each block there is a task for you to complete. Challenge yourself, are you able to complete an entire row? Or even better, go for blackout! How satisfying would that be for you to mark off each box!
There are two separate keiki bingo sheets - one to encourage them to try knew things and another if they are struggling to control their impulses. If you have your child participate, offer up a prize for bingo and blackout. Maybe they could earn a new app, book or movie to download or you can order than a toy or board game they've been wanting.
Feel free to pass these bingo sheets on to anyone. Keep a look out for some different bingo sheets in future posts.
Looking forward to hearing what tasks you do and your take on your BINGO experience! Have a great week!