Taking ownership: making your health & well-being priority

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January turned out to be the month to exercise kindness: to myself (see “A new way to approach the New Year: what’s your word?“). Because let’s face it: if I’m not personally invested in myself, then who will be? On my quest to take ownership of my overall health and well-being, I’ve met with various doctors this month—including my primary care physician who ordered a glut of labs to rule out myriad disorders (yay, me), and my cardiologist who I retain to monitor a congenital heart defect. The good news: in all areas tested, I either show normal or improved results. There is no bad news. I feel like I’m finally back on track. And that the lifestyle modifications I’ve applied over the last half year are not only working, but they’re realistic and maintainable. For me, that’s a win-win. Next up: annual echocardiogram, and lab work to dismiss a familial blood disorder. Oh yes, and an overdue skin cancer checkup.

How do you invest in yourself?

Image courtesy of digitalart at FreeDigitalPhotos.net.

Body shaming comes in all shapes and sizes

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Body shaming

 

The other day, a couple of (well-meaning) people thought it was okay to comment about my weight on Facebook. If I were heavier, I think it would be un-PC to call me out on it. But I weigh in on the smaller side with a lean BMI. The biggest (no pun intended) thing to note, however, is that my weight is nobody’s business, except my physician’s. What is important is that body shaming is inappropriate toward any size or shape. A few years ago, I wrote an article for In With Skin magazine—titled “Body Image Can Shape Well-Being”—about the ways people close to us may influence our feelings toward our bodies, either positively or negatively, plus tips on how to develop a healthy body image. And as someone who has lived in the shadows of an eating disorder for decades, I speak from experience. It’s okay to express concern (privately, rather than on social media). But remember: words create a lasting impression.

How’s your body image?

Image courtesy of Aleksa D at FreeDigitalPhotos.net.

Balancing it out

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Balancing it out

[Image credit: Stuart Miles]

Life is a constant give and take where many of us strive for balance as we navigate our individual journeys. Some might be led by an all-or-nothing mentality, others with moderation as their guide. Personally, I’m on a mission to better balance my overall well-being. While Bikram yoga has been my go-to safe place to nurture my physical and emotional health, as well as share in a sense of community among other yogis, I’ve recently begun exploring additional ways to bring cohesiveness to my everyday life. This may look like time carved out to enjoy a new hobby, practice self-love over a glass of wine and a good book or find solace in prayer or corporate worship. Just like one food cannot provide the nourishment we need to maintain healthy, fruitful lives, we cannot expect to sustain our zest for life if we invest 100 percent of our energies into a single endeavor. It’s about sometimes taking the scenic route.

What different ways do you balance it out?