Had a Bad Day? 7 Things I Strive Not to Do

All of us have bad days.  Sometimes even bad weeks, bad months, or even times we feel like we are trapped by events or people in our lives and it lands us in a bad mood.

Many times the advice you get are all the ways to make you feel better.  Ways to relieve stress, or take the worries off your mind, but it can be hard to even have the initiative to do those things!  No one ever really talks about the things you should NOT do.

At our house, things have been a little crazy and upside down.  It feels like at least one person is having a bad day in our house everyday.  We are adjusting to a new schedule, home programming, and a whole new diet plan to support our son with his Brain Balance program.  We try to play outside, visit with friends, get out of the house to get our minds off of the stresses, but many days lately I feel like we are circling the drain!  So, how can I help my family and I to STOP doing things that contribute to a bad day?  Here are some ideas…

1. Quit Feeling bad for feeling bad.

So many times I apologize for my mood, for feeling bad.  But really, we CAN’T be happy ALL the time.  It’s ok to experience our full range of emotions from time to time.  Instead of dwelling on your bad feelings, please just allow yourself to be present in your emotions and work THROUGH them!  Many times you are able to let things go and make room for a sense of peace.

2. Don’t Eat Your Feelings.

I promise, it only feels good for a moment!  In my experience, shortly after I’m done eating that comfort food, guilt and shame make their way in and I end up feeling worse than when I started.  It’s taken me a LONG time to remember that each time I’m tempted by that feeling of a need for comfort food, that I feel worse afterward.  Now I’m able to reach for healthier food options or make a smoothie.  So remember to keep your favorite healthy food options close at hand in your home, especially when bad moods strike!

3. Are you focusing on the problem, or the solution?

Sometimes it feels really good to vent to your friends and share all your troubles with them, but be sure you aren’t complaining about the same things over and over without searching for a solution.  Plus, your bad mood could spill over on them, and you don’t want to be the cause of someone else’s bad mood.  So instead of complaining, try and come up with ideas and steps you can take to better your mood or situation.

4. Are you avoiding the fresh air?

Go OUTSIDE!  It will boost your mood almost instantly. Don’t give in to that feeling of wanting to crawl in bed and binge watch episodes of your favorite show on Netflix.  Instead to out and enjoy nature!  Find a local nature trail, take the kids to the park, or simply go for a walk around the block.  Sunshine is nature’s antidepressant.

5. Never moving at all. Ever.

I know, I know…exercise is tough, and not fun for so many, but even if it feels like the least appealing thing to do in the entire world, DO IT ANYWAY!  5 minutes with an elevated heart rate can boost your mood for hours after.  For me, taking TRX class has been a giant help for my mood.  Even when I don’t want to go, I go anyway because I know how much better I will feel after it’s over!  Plus my coach is really awesome about accountability.  So get up and DO something, I promise it’ll be worth it to help you get out of your “blah” mood.

6. Staying in your head.

When we’re in a rough mood, we tend to focus on the bad. We go over negative situations and outcomes like a video replaying in our mine. Don’t wallow in self-pity or overanalyze past drama, start living in the here and now instead. Do activities that bring you joy: coloring, cooking, reading a good book, or doing yoga.  Find what works as an outlet for your mind to release those bad emotions.

7. Use some essential oils.

I know, crazy right?  But really they help tremendously with helping your body feel more balanced.  One of my favorites is Stress-Away from Young Living.  I put a little on my neck, or a few drops in the diffuser and it makes a world of difference for all of us in our home.  Check out Oils 101 for more info on these wonderful oils, I’d be happy to help you with a wholesale discount.

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I HATE Junk Food!

This past weekend was a little tough around here.  Being fully committed to our Brain Balance plan and completely changing our food.  Gluten-free, dairy-free, no refined sugar, no processed food, no junk…NOTHING!

Now that’s hard for anyone, but for a 6 year old who already ate a restricted diet because he is so picky…it is SUPER FRUSTRATING!  It’s been really tough for him to understand, and really, he’s done so much better than we anticipated.  BUT he seems to constantly be telling us he’s hungry, and that’s hard for a mom to hear all day!  I know he’s not starving, I know he’s ok, but it’s still hard to hear and hard to see him break down because the food he knows and loves is no longer a part of his life.

Saturday night I went to bed really unsettled.  I started getting really angry at the food industry in general.  Why do they have to make so much food that gives us absolutely NO nutrition?  Why is it in our face and advertised EVERYWHERE?  Why do they have to put sugar in EVERYTHING?  It is all around us and makes my job of feeding my kids healthy nutritious food that much harder.  Constantly having to tell him that a particular food isn’t on our plan and we’ll have to look for a healthy recipe to make that item at home isn’t a good enough answer for him right now.

I know it will all come in time.  He will adjust, he will get used to it, and in the long run this is what is BEST for ALL of us.  But right now, I REALLY hate junk food!

What do you think?  How do you handle encouraging healthy eating when there’s all this bad stuff all around us?

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I Don’t Want My Kids to Worry About Food

I read this blog post the other day, and so much of it resonated with me that I wanted to share it here.  (Plus it’s  a really awesome blog/resource for me right now)

http://www.100daysofrealfood.com/2013/05/10/i-dont-want-my-daughters-to-worry-about-food/

Changing our diet as a family is hard.  Helping other people in our life understand why it is important is even harder, and frustrating.  I don’t want my children to have a bad relationship with food, it’s something I’ve struggled with for many years, and I don’t want that for them.  I don’t want them to feel left out or singled out at birthday parties or family events either.

It can be a fine line between teaching our children to value their bodies and minds by choosing healthy food and becoming too extreme. I like how she talked about seeking the balance between the two. What do you guys think? What kinds of conversations do you have with your children about healthy eating?

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Angels in the Snow

This right here…it’s the one movement that is part of his home programming that he actually enjoys.

It’s called the Angel, but he calls it “Angels in the snow”.  It’s the only one that I don’t have to correct his breathing, or help him with it to get his body movements going the right direction.  I do the deep breathing right along with him, mostly for my own sanity.

Stepping back and realizing that this isn’t as easy for him as it is for me, has been a great adjustment.  All his exercises in the home program are things I’m able to just do, with very little effort, but for him it takes great effort to overcome those primal reflexes that we are trying to work out so that he can better control his body and overall self awareness.  This is just as much a learning moment for me as it is for him.

Day by day, we are making tiny bits of progress, and I am so excited to see where he will be in a few months!

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Little Victories

We tried some brown rice cereal, sweetened with organic cane sugar and it also had unsweetened cocoa.  Then we poured unsweetened coconut milk over it.  He took a few unsure bites, but decided he liked it.  My other 2 kids liked it as well.  We also tried some coconut milk yogurt that he really didn’t like, but I got each kid to at least take 2 bites.  It will definitely take some time to change how they eat, but I’m excited that they have been more willing than I expected them to be.  My oldest was NOT happy that she was having to join her brother in eating differently, but after I explained to her that it was for the best for all of us, she’s actually been quite helpful most of the time with encouraging him to try more.

Food has always been a struggle for our “O”.  We discovered when he was about 12 months old that he has a severe allergy to eggs and peanuts, then lower on the spectrum is tree nuts, corn, and soy.  We are able to eat peanut butter around him, but he has never ingested it.  We’ve always tried to limit how much he eats of the other things, but corn and soy are in nearly every processed food, like crackers and other snacks he loves, so it has always been hard to find him alternative food for in between meals.  He also deals with some texture issues.  Even when it is a food he likes, if it is cooked in a different way (or “wrong” according to O) then he won’t eat it, sometimes he will even gag and throw up.  He used to LOVE blueberries, when he was about 2 and a half we went to the farmers market and he asked to carry the bag of blueberries and he ended up eating nearly the entire bag as we walked around, that’s how much he loved them.  Well, at some point he got a “yuck filled blueberry” and he hasn’t touched them since.  😦  So far we haven’t even been able to convince him to try them again.

Another texture issue for him is the crispy-ness of chicken nuggets.  For example, we generally were at Chick-fil-a every week and he always peeled most of the breading from his chicken so that he could eat it, but give him the grilled chicken and he won’t touch it!  Those are just a couple of the battles we face.  It’s a journey, and ultimately changing his diet is for the best and is going to help him greatly in the long run!

Do you have a child who deals with texture issues?  What are some tips or tricks that you have tried?

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Harder than I thought

We are sitting in the waiting room while O is in the back doing his thing at his 3rd day at Brain Balance.   When this began,  I thought this would be the hard part. Traveling 30 minutes to get here,  him receiving his 1 hour program treatment, then the 40 minute drive home (because traffic is worse then).  I really thought this would be the hardest,  then food would be really hard for him too.  Well, he’s thrown me for a loop!   His home program and exercises are a REAL STRUGGLE.  He doesn’t want to do it (correctly), no matter what we say or do.  We try to make it fun,  we set a timer and tell him he only has to work for that amount of time,  then we’ll take a break, we remind him of the Brain Bucks he gets to earn for doing his work, but so far we haven’t discovered what will help him actually do the exercises like he needs to.  I keep reminding myself that we are just in the beginning, and that it takes time for him to really get this,  but it’s hard.   I spend most of the time with him reminding myself not to get frustrated and breathing deeply so I don’t lose control while working on home program.  
Hopefully soon we’ll find how to reach him in this area.  He’s actually done well in the other areas of the program, so I’m trying to see the bright side of our situation.