PHYSICAL RENEWAL includes replacing old habits, repairing outdated thinking, prioritizing restorative stress reduction, and CULTIVATING strong healthy bodies.
Are you feeling exhausted?
Is it difficult to think clearly?
Are you experiencing ruminating thoughts?
Is your waistline expanding?
Are you short on patience?
Are your emotions volatile?
Do you feel isolated?
Are you depressed?
Do you feel anxious?
Are you frustrated?
Are you overwhelmed?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, it may be time to take a look at your priorities and to see if you can make some adjustments to better align your thoughts, words, and deeds to CULTIVATE C.H.I. to CREATE PHYSICAL RENEWAL.
“Renew. Come to the water. Live in the moment and be. Refresh your mind. Rest your body. Renew your spirit. Regain a gentle heart and peaceful soul. Reclaim yourself. Restore in the power that is greater than you.”
What is PHYSICAL RENEWAL and why is it important?
RENEWAL means to replace, repair, to make new, fresh, or strong again. It is the opposite of destruction, exhaustion, and impoverishment.
When was the last time you took time just for you? Do you feel guilty even entertaining the thought? Do you assess your personal worth by how busy you are?
Burning the candle at both ends is only sustainable for so long. Think back to when you were a teenager or young adult. You could probably function quite well with little sleep if you needed to stay up to cram for an exam or write a paper. When we were younger our hormones were produced in such a way as to handle this stress. As we age, our hormone production decreases or ceases all together and can no longer handle high levels of cortisol production, which is our stress hormone. Cortisol drives insulin levels, which in turn, directly influences fat storage around the mid-section of the body.
What do we as overachievers and perfectionists tend to do when we start seeing and feeling weight gain? We go into Blame and Shame. Blame and Shame is all about judgment and criticism.
“Worrying about scarcity is our culture’s version of post-traumatic stress. It happens when we’ve been through too much, and rather than coming together to heal (which requires vulnerability) we’re angry and scared and at each other’s throats.”
Blame and Shame originates in what Brene’ Brown calls our Culture of Scarcity. The idea that we see ourselves as “never enough”. Never smart enough, never thin enough, never successful enough, never extraordinary enough. This underpinning of negative thought wreaks havoc on our self-esteem.
This Culture of Scarcity is all about punishment and withholding. We do not give ourselves the foods to properly satisfy our appetite, spend hours punishing our bodies with exercise, and withhold physically pleasurable and renewing activities such as having a day at the spa, sharing lunch with a friend, taking a nap, or enjoying a walk along the beach. We may have an inner dialogue that says things like…”I don’t deserve this. I need to be punished. I have no willpower. I am not thin enough. I am not fit enough.”
This Culture of Scarcity actually results in just the opposite behavior than what we think we are trying to SHAME ourselves into doing. The part of the brain that controls our fight and flight response, the AMYGDALA, becomes triggered and instead of us being able to cut back on our food intake, we become overwhelmed with the urge to binge eat. Instead of adhering to a punishing 7 day a week training schedule, we fall into depression and can’t get out of bed. Rather than going to bed at a decent hour to get a good night of restorative sleep, we stay up late watching TV, playing video games, or lie awake with ruminating thoughts and anxiety. Every time we create this culture of BLAME, SHAME, and SCARCITY this part of our brain, the AMYGDALA, will fire up and push back. BLAME, SHAME, and SCARCITY are NOT the road to creating PHYSICAL RENEWAL or CULTIVATING C.H.I.
So how can we move from BLAME and SHAME and SCARCITY to CULTIVATING C.H.I. and PHYSICAL RENEWAL?
“In order to change your body, you must first change your mind.”
Am I suggesting that we give up on our fitness goals?
NO WAY!!! Our BEST years are still to come!
I am suggesting that as we age, our bodies change and we have to change our thinking and our strategy accordingly. We work smarter, not harder.
“We are often at war with ourselves. You have to find that balance between your heart and your mind.”
“Create balance. Feed your soul. Fuel your body. Expand your mind. Strengthen yourself.”
FIRSTLY, what can we do to CULTIVATE C.H.I.? Remember, C.H.I. means our thoughts, words, and actions are aligned with our INTEGRITY. When we know better, we choose to do better. If we don’t, we will continue to be out of alignment and to experience negative PHYSICAL consequences.
What are the consequences of not CULTIVATING CONGRUENCY and HARMONY and living out of alignment with our INTEGRITY?
What must we LET GO of to CULTIVATE CONGRUENCY and HARMONY and align with our INTEGRITY?
*Old Negative Thinking
SECONDLY, we must implement a New Strategy to CREATE PHYSICAL RENEWAL.
“Renewal requires opening yourself up to new ways of thinking and feeling.”
How can we CREATE PHYSICAL RENEWAL?
We must stop obsessing about diet and exercise. This only adds STRESS which is the enemy as we age. This continual triggering of the AMYGDALA results in the overproduction of cortisol which impacts insulin and results in more stored body fat. Cortisol also turns ON the reward center of the brain and turns OFF the satisfaction center of the brain. This means we are rewarded when we eat highly processed foods and are not satisfied with just a little bit, often resulting in binge eating trying to achieve satiation.
We can see by our continuing struggle that what we’re doing isn’t working. Stress producing cortisol is the issue here. Stress must be managed to achieve and maintain lasting health. Health should be the goal here. Weight loss is simply a wonderful side effect of CULTIVATING C.H.I. and PHYSICAL RENEWAL.
“The body and mind are one. When the intimate relationship between mind and body is disrupted, aging and entropy accelerate. Restoring body/mind integration brings about renewal. Through conscious breathing and movement techniques, you can renew the body/mind and reverse the aging process.”
Strategies to Reduce Stress, Lower Cortisol Levels and Cultivate Physical Renewal:
*Leisure Walking daily (not power walking).
*Weight training 2-3 x per week.
*Hot Detox Bath.
*Pedicures and Manicures.
*Lunching with a Friend.
*Snuggling with a Furry Friend.
*Adding in foods which reduce hunger and cravings such as foods high in protein, fiber, and water.
*Adding in nutrient dense fresh vegetables.
*Adding in healthy fats such as coconut oil, olive oil, avocados, nuts, seeds, grass fed butter.
*Crowding out fast foods, processed foods, and sugary foods.
*Hydrating with water throughout the day.
“Turn the midlife crisis to your own advantage by making it a time for renewal of your body and mind rather than stand by helplessly and watch them decline.”
You may be asking yourself…Now what? I would love to implement these recommendations but I really want or need some help.
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