JOLT your life tips are currently updated every quarter and are a part of the JOLT Challenge newsletter.
===How to stay healthy when you've got no time===
1) Make a plan – an eating plan!
Know what you are going to be eating for every meal (& snack!). Write it down and take your ingredients list to the supermarket on the weekend and buy only what you need. Pre-prepare as much as you can. This is a great tip to save money too!
2) Gratitude List
It's hard to feel grumpy or depressed at the same time as feeling grateful. Rewire your brain back to the positive after a challenge by noting down every morning 5 things that you are grateful for. If you need to you can refer to it throughout the day!
3) Eat your Greens!
How many times have to said this to your children? Or your parents have said it to you when you were younger? Wise advise though, because green veggies are the most nutrient packed foods available. Get creative and add greens where ever you can.
* Replace your coffee with a green juice
* Add a side salad to your lunch
* Add green veggies to your breakfast smoothie
4) Get out in the Sun – your Vitamin D break
Vitamin D helps prevent osteoporosis, depression, prostate cancer and breast cancer, and even affects diabetes and obesity.
Stress and the resulting high-cortisol levels can deplete the body of vitamin D however, so when you're living a busy life, it is even more important to boost your levels of vitamin D.
Just spending a few minutes of your lunch time feeling the warm sun on your face can also really help to lift your spirits. This is a small investment of time to give you so many wonderful benefits!
5) Surround yourself with nature
This does not necessarily mean to go and run around in a field or a forest. But if you are sat in an office 9 – 5pm, 5 days a week, it's important to know that indoor air pollution and low humidity are now ranked as one of the top five threats to public health.
In many offices, the air we breathe is continually bombarded with toxins from all sorts of sources, including carpets, furniture, office cleaning products, computers, printers and photocopiers. Putting a plant on your desk is the most effective way to purify the air around you. Plants also reduce stress, improve concentration, improve productivity and reduce dust pollution.
===The Shift in the Season===
Many people look at the shift of the season from Summer into Autumn as a negative thing, the weather deteriorates into cold & wet, you tend to stay inside more because of this. But there are so many reasons and ways to appreciate Autumn. Rather than feeling down that summer is now a thing of the past, try acknowledging that every moment quickly becomes our history.
We need to look at Autumn in a more positive way, the trees may be losing their leaves, but look at the beauty in that – the colours of yellows, orange & reds, so vibrant! The trees are rejuvenating, preparing themselves for the coming months, and we should be too! There’s no need for us to stop, let’s embrace this time and make the most of the change.
Tip #1: Set some positive resolutions. Why wait for the New Year? Bringing awareness and intention to some positive affirmations and resolutions are excellent ways to bring yourself into a sound state of balance. Don’t be hard on yourself and set rigorous, harsh resolutions. Instead set positive, gentle intentions that will help ease you into a new season. Such resolutions could be as simple as introducing warm lemon water into your morning routine or you could be aiming to get more sleep at night, giving yourself an hour before bed free of technology, taking a walk around the neighbourhood each evening with your dog, spouse or whole family, waking each morning and calling to mind three things you are grateful for…that kind of thing. Positive, simple resolutions will give you purpose, asserting your intention within your body as you care for it and ease it into a new cycle of weather, daylight patterns, temperature and routine.
Tip #2: Clear out the clutter. Whether this be in the physical way, in a big clear out of your closet or garage of things you no longer need – what a perfect thing to do on a wet and blustery Autumn weekend. Or perhaps there is some emotional clutter standing in your way or holding you back – what things do you have in your life that you need to let go of? Write them down, get them out of your head and then destroy them – a ceremonial burning, or ripping up of the paper or whatever you see fit to clear your cluttered mind.
Tip #3: Align yourself with the Season. As the season shifts, give yourself permission to make different choices and changes in your lifestyle. The shorter days and longer nights are the perfect excuse to take the time to really look after yourself – give yourself time for you.
Spend time relaxing at home, wrapped up with a blanket, wearing your favorite pajamas or comfy pants and enjoying early nights. Watch movies, drink chai tea, or start reading that book you’ve been meaning to.
Autumn is a nice time to slow down and enjoy some internal reflection. Enjoy the moment—when cool breezes & rain become the norm and jeans or trackies become our standard clothing. Allow this season to be a chance to nurture yourself by eating fresh seasonal foods and living in alignment with nature.
===Resolutions for 2013===
Tip #1: Focus on what you will do, not what you won't do
With 2013 fast approaching, you may be thinking about your resolutions for the New Year. When we focus on negative thoughts (eg "I’m not going to spend so much time at work this year") we reinforce our bad habits rather than breaking them. Instead reframe and ask the question "What will I do instead?" to find positive solutions to focus on (eg "I will spend more time with my family this year")
"There is nothing good or bad but thinking makes it so" – William Shakespeare
Tip #2: Be positively grateful and impact your happiness and health every day
To say we feel grateful is not to say that everything in our lives is necessarily great. It just means we are aware of our blessings.
"Gratitude is the heart's memory" – French Proverb
Tip #3: Fall in love with yourself
Accept yourself unconditionally. By doing so you embrace all parts of yourself, the more you embrace, the more happiness you allow yourself to accept, receive and enjoy and the more you are able to accept others.
"Your task is not to seek for Love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built up against it." – Rumi
===3 ways to survive the Christmas Parties:===
The silly season is almost upon us which means lots of parties and sometimes having too much to drink. Now the only sure-fire way to avoid a hangover is to obviously not drink alcohol or at least drink in moderation. Failing that, here are some useful tips to help with those nights of revelry.
1. Drink 1-for-1: That’s one glass of water for every alcoholic beverage you consume. The headache you feel the next morning is a result of a lack of fluid in the brain along with the dilation of the brain’s blood vessels. As the blood vessels dilate, it puts pressure on the pain sensors in the brain. Alcohol is a diuretic so you need to replenish your body with water. The fructose in fruit juice also helps (apple juice rather than the more acidic orange juice). Coffee is also a diuretic so drinking it first thing in the morning doesn’t help to rehydrate you however it acts as a vasoconstrictor and reduces the swelling of the blood vessels that causes the headache. Only drink a maximum of two cups and make sure you’re drinking water as well.
2. Light is right: The darker the alcohol, the more chance of getting a hangover due to congeners, the chemicals that darken the colour of alcohol. Brandy is the worst, followed by red wine (but for a different reason – the chemical tyramine), rum, whisky, white wine, gin and vodka. A study by the British Medical Journal showed that drinking bourbon whisky is twice as likely to cause a hangover than the same amount of vodka.
3. Eat food: Food slows the absoption of alcohol so less alcohol actually reaches the brain. You can eat prior to, during and after drinking. High-fat foods help absorb alcohol and avoid sugary foods as the sugar makes if difficult to sense how much alcohol you’re consuming.
===3 ways to overcome limiting beliefs (WINTER ‘10)===
Where do our beliefs come from? Many things we believe come from the media, what we read, and other peoples beliefs such as our parents. How true are they? There will be a lot of people out there who'll be in awe of what the All Whites have achieved at the 2010 Football World cup. If the players had believed their critics and what they were saying pre-tournament, the scores would be quite different. So how can you do to ensure your beliefs are true to you and are working positively for you?
1. Uncovering beliefs: Make a list of beliefs that are important to you. Next to each, list from where or who this belief originates. Next, write how each belief serves you, then how it does not serve you. Finally answer the question, is the belief worth changing?
2. Power up: Think of an area of your life you are unhappy about. What is it about that area you believe makes you unhappy? Now what is the opposite belief to this? Take this belief on board momentarily and look for evidence for this to be true. If you look for the positive evidence on this you'll find it and be able to build on it. An empowering belief will make all the difference!
3. Re-View: Take another belief that you consider to be one that holds you back. It may be that you're not creative or you and a particular colleague will never get on. Now detach from your belief on the matter and look at it from a different point of view. How would a friend look at this, a family member, a famous person, the colleague in question? Come up with a couple of different points of view so the grip of your limiting belief is weakened.
===3 ways to reduce stress levels (AUTUMN ‘10)===
Stress is a major contributor to illness, lack of sleep, emotional outbursts, poor performance and eating disorders to name a few. Try one of the following when you feel you're getting stressed:
1. Self reflect: Stop what you are doing and focus on breathing through your nose, relaxing your shoulders down, with your back straight. Your in-breath should extend your lower abdomen, with your out-breath pulling it in. Continue until you are calm. This space will allow you the time to make a better choice.
2. Make a list: If you are stressed about having too much to do, get it out of your head and on to paper making a list. Work through and categorise items and then prioritise them in order of importance.
3. Change your perpective: Instead of thinking of all the things that could go wrong, shift your focus to how they will all go well. Control your inner voice, don't let it control you.
===3 ways to boost your serotonin (SUMMER ‘09)===
Serotonin is an essential brain chemical with roles in regulating appetite, sleep, mood, behaviour, memory and learning, temperature regulation, cardiovascular function and muscle contraction. It is important to ensure you have enough.
1. Catch some sun rays by taking a stroll outdoors or eating your lunch at the park
2. Get a massage – discover which works for you: Thai, Swiss, reflexology
3. Rent a funny DVD, go to a comedy show or spend time with some friends