Thursday, February 4, 2016

You are NOT a Number!

Weight.  Pounds.  Ounces.  Kilograms.  Whatever!

These numbers do not define you.  Are you hearing me on that?  You need to hear me.  You are not defined by a number on a scale.  It is a number.  It does not reflect you as a whole.  It does not reflect you as a person, as a woman, or as a child of God.

On Tuesday, I issued a challenge on my Periscope broadcast.  I challenged my viewers to stay off the scale for the entire month of February.  I challenged them to just spend the month working on fitness, making healthy food choices, and loving who they are inside.  I challenged them to let go of that number that plagues them.

Let it go!

Why would I issue such a challenge?

Because health is not measured entirely in a number.  Because you can start a fitness program and GAIN weight due to building muscle.  And because we are women and our bodies go through cycles and water retention is a real thing.

And... most importantly... because the depression that occurs in the minds and hearts of countless women over a number is something that I want to stop.

So I encourage you, dear readers, to hear what I am saying and to understand that your value and worth is not defined on the scale.  You are more.  You are so much more.  For the rest of this month, stay off the scale.  Put it away where you won't see it.  Allow yourself to love the person you are without berating your efforts because of something you stepped on in the bathroom.

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Ribbon Clips!

I just learned how to make ribbon clips and I am thrilled at how they came out.  I only have very plain ribbon, but they are still quite pretty.  I'm hoping to get some fancy ribbon soon.

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Is Comparison Stealing Your Joy?

One of the things I have suffered from a lot in my life is the negative effects of comparison.  I have found my own self-worth damaged by the unhealthy and negative voices that plague my inner thoughts... She's prettier, she's skinnier, she's smarter, etc...

Coming into the fitness world has been quite a challenge for me in the comparison department.  I've noticed that I look at what other people are doing by way of exercise programs, calories burned, and weight loss, and I start to bash myself.

Why am I not doing that? 
Why am I not burning as many calories? 
Why am I not losing that much weight?

Recently, I actually had to leave my fitness apps because of comparison.  I have been on My Fitness Pal for a long time now, but watching what my friends were doing and seeing people log in and post weight lost each week and feeling like I just wasn't measuring up has been soul crushing.  My self-worth can't take it.  So I gave up fit tech for a while.  I announced I wouldn't be on and I left.

Do I still struggle with comparison?  Of course!  The world around me is full of beautiful people and beautiful images and it is a daily battle for me to keep the unhealthy thoughts away.  But I know what bothers me the most and I took some action.  I don't want comparison stealing my joy.

I left fit tech to keep my joy.

I know that I am worthy.  I know that I am more.  I know that I am beautiful.

I also know that the enemy lies and he is out to destroy me and he knows my weaknesses.  I have to be on guard.

If you have found comparison to be an issue in any area of your life, I would like to encourage you to step back from whatever situation you are in that is causing it.  You don't have to leave forever.  I still have my fit tech accounts, I am just not using them for a time.  Stepping away for a season can help you refocus on what is good and pleasing and help you get away from negative thought patterns that are killing your spirit.

Your joy in this life is important.  We will all have struggles, but if we can find a way to rid ourselves of the ones that don't need to be there (like weight loss comparison) we will live much more abundant lives.

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Little Wooden Planner Clips

I have been having so much fun making my own planner clips.  All I did for these was take some small, wooden clips (clothespin style) from the Target Dollar Spot (Bullseye's Playground) and some Valentine stickers and joined them together.  In this case, there wasn't even a need for a glue gun.  They just stuck and stuck well.  I love them for Valentine's Day.

These next clips are still the wooden clips from Target and this time I used the hot glue gun to add embellishments that a friend sent me (thanks, Sara!).  The way I see it, there is no limit to the possibilities with these clips.  All you need is a good imagination.

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Replace "I Can't"

One of the things that I think can be the most self-defeating in life is the unhealthy way people tell themselves that they can't do something.  Since becoming a Beachbody coach, I have heard "I can't" used more times than I ever thought I would.

"I can't exercise."

"I can't eat healthy."

"I can't lift weights."

"I can't afford good food."

It's a horrible habit to be in, saying "I can't" to everything.  Today, I would like to encourage you to replace those words with better words... "I'm going to try."

Rather than convincing yourself that you can't do something, tell yourself that you are going to try.  I am using this in terms of fitness, but you can apply it to any area of life.

Here are some examples of how to change your wording:

No: "I can't exercise."
Yes: "I'm going to try to move more."

No: "I can't eat healthy."
Yes: "I'm going to try to make some healthy food changes."

No: "I can't lift weights."
Yes: "I'm going to try to modify this workout to suit me."

No: "I can't afford good food."
Yes: "I'm going to try to replace one thing in my diet with a healthier option."

The simple act of replacing "I can't" with "I'm going to try" will change your overall attitude and your positive results will increase because you are being more positive.

Give it a try - yes, try trying!  What have you got to lose?

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

5 Benefits of Outdoor Recreation for Children With Autism

Getting outside and playing doesn't just increase strength, endurance and agility in children with autism. Outdoor recreation also benefits other areas of their lives, from improved social skills to improved safety. A 2011 rehabilitation science study found that children with varying degrees of autism are able to achieve optimal physical activity levels with support from families. That being said, here are five benefits of outdoor recreation for children with autism:

Improved Spatial Awareness

If your child has difficulty with spatial awareness, or understanding the relationship between objects or other people and themselves, rollicking on a playground is helpful in improving this concept. Exploring on a swingset or jungle gym enables autistic children to become more aware of the way their bodies interact with obstacles as well as better navigate environments occupied by other children while still protecting themselves.

By playing with a variety of static objects that are made of diverse materials, shapes and sizes, children with autism are able to learn how to appropriately interact with real-world structures. They become more aware of proper movement and more respectful of others' space.

Decreased Self-Destructive Behaviors

If your autistic child engages in harmful actions toward himself or herself, physical activity can act as a deterrent and help keep your child safe. A 2012 study published by the U.S. National Library of Medicine found that participating in physical exercise results in subsequent decreases of repetitive behavior, including self-injurious ones.

Outdoor recreation promotes fatigue and replaces the stimulus the child craves when participating in destructive behavior. A break outdoors during or after school and at home can better help children with autism regulate their behavior.

Enriched Social Competence

Oftentimes, playing outdoors involves teamwork, whether it's playing together on a sports team or it's taking directions from a coach. Phoenix magazine reports that the simple social interactions found in sports, such as high-fives, can filter into other areas of life. Participating in recreational activities helps kids with autism learn to listen, collaborate, and give and receive positive reinforcement. Outdoor play helps autistic children become more aware of social cues, which benefits them in a classroom setting and at home as well.

Increased Self-Esteem

There may be a special talent inside your child that's raring to come out. From leading a sports team to showing off acrobatic skills on a jungle gym to scoring a goal, there are many opportunities for your child to build up their confidence outside while playing outside. Structured settings like team sports allow for cheering by onlookers, while building something or creating chalk art gives your child something tangible to celebrate.

Preparation for Adulthood

Working with others, interacting with physical objects and taking direction are all essential skills your child needs to enter the workforce. Group activities instill a sense of community in autistic children and give them the chance to interact with peers and mentors.

Autism Speaks reports other areas where outdoor recreation can benefit children with autism, including improved attention span, improved learning and higher levels of happiness. All of these skills help cultivate a healthier, more well-rounded lifestyle in childhood and beyond.

Carpe Diem!

One of the planners that I am currently using is the Carpe Diem planner by Simple Stories.

I bought my Carpe Diem planner to use as a business planner for my Beachbody work.  So far, it is working out really well.  I love that there is so much space to write my daily stuff in.  The pictures above just show the monthly calendar view, but beyond that is a weekly spread that is incredible.  I love that I have space for notes and lists and more!  I also love that I can decorate it.  I mean really, what kind of planner girl would I be if I wasn't decorating?  Washi tape is my new love language, know what I mean?

Being new to the planner community, I don't have tons to compare this planner to.  I also use a travelers notebook for personal journaling and fitness planning (for my personal health and fitness).  And I have a Happy Planner that I use for household planning (meal planning, things with the kids, cleaning, etc...).  The Carpe Diem is the first A5 planner I have owned and I am definitely happy with it.  I also love that the Simple Stories people provide multiple free printables on their website to help add to my decorating fever.  It's just fun!
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