Tag Archives: physical health

Physically Healthy Habits: Crying

health diagram by Stuart Miles

image courtesy of Stuart Miles / freedigitalphotos.net

It’s been a wild couple of weeks. I went out of the country for a brief vacation, went to my favorite rappers’ concert (Andy Mineo and Lecrae), and got sick while having very little time to recover. Emotionally during that time, I saw someone that had recently hurt me very badly, and hospice was called in for my father who is expected to live only a few more weeks. A couple of days ago, I found myself sitting at my dining room table bawling my eyes out. I knew that most of my tears were me releasing (physically) the emotional trauma of seeing that person again, and some of it was about my father’s impending death. But what I didn’t expect was that I would feel so much better and lighter after crying. Physically, crying had been incredibly beneficial to me.

You might think it’s weird that I’m blogging about crying as a physically healthy habit. But I’ve found that the body needs to shed tears to be healthy. Crying helps us to be physically healthy in the following ways:

  • Tears release us. I can’t tell you how relieved I felt once I cried a couple of days ago. It had actually been a few months since I had really cried that hard, and I knew that my body was needing to release a lot of stress. In addition, I knew that I needed to release what I was feeling from seeing that “someone,” so I had actually TRIED to cry for days afterward. So this cry was a few days in coming. And when it did, I actually felt the tension leave my body: my shoulders relaxed and my breathing deepened and slowed. Psalm 56:8 says that the Lord collects our tears in a bottle. And when we cry, we release our tears and fears to Him, which in turn releases us physically from being bound by those things here on earth. Need a good release? Try crying!
  • Tears purify us. Many times, our tears come from being a part of the refiner’s fire. Isaiah 48:10 says, “Behold, I have refined you, but not as silver; I have tried you in the furnace of affliction” and to me, that means that every situation in my life has been filtered through the hands of God. He knows what He’s doing by placing me in these situations. But let’s be honest: refining usually brings tears: tears of frustration, anger, sorrow, hurt. Growing and becoming refined as silver or gold comes at a costly price that often hurts as we are stretched and shaped into more Christlikeness. Shedding tears as a part of that journey is not weakness, it’s an expected part of the affliction. As a bonus, that purification happens both inside and out: you are shedding toxic chemicals from body as you cry and bringing clarity to your mind.
  • Tears make way for joy. “Weeping may last for the night, but joy comes in the morning” (Psalm 30:5). Once I cried this week, I was ready to move forward. Many times I’ve found that crying is the last step before I can proceed after some sort of affliction. It’s harder for me to find true joy when I haven’t gotten past something else. Even more, it’s impossible for me to grasp onto God when I’m holding on to past afflictions. I need to cry—to release and purify myself so that I can step up to the plate and hold onto God. And usually, there is something else God wants to place in my now empty hands! This time, it was some business blessings that He could not release to me until I had released my tears to Him. So if you want joy, know that tears come first!

Crying may not seem like a physically healthy habit, but it is! Even the Bible notes that Jesus wept (John 11:35)—and if Jesus did it, then we should, too! Tears can help us become stronger, better people by releasing us and purifying us so that we are free to accept the joy that only God gives. Are you ready to cry your way into physical health?  🙂

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Physically Healthy Habits: Touch

health diagram by Stuart Miles

image courtesy of Stuart Miles / freedigitalphotos.net

Believe it or not, I’m not a real touchy feely person. I tend to hug my close friends, but I’m pretty good with a handshake or slight nod to others. As someone who is not very touchy feely, there is one place where I allow more physical touch than others. I have noticed that when I visit my family, I am unusually touchy with my mother. I like to sit on her lap (yes, I am 37 and love sitting on my 70-year-old mother’s lap) and hug her a lot, and many times she will come into my room to hug me and tuck me into bed. It’s not just because I’m a momma’s girl—it’s because I physically crave that touch from my mother. And I realize that I crave it so much because of the long droughts of physical touch I experience normally.

Science has shown that physical touch is incredibly important to our health. And while some people (like me) are not as comfortable with physical touch, here are a few things to remember about this physically healthy habit:

  • Physical touch is a necessity, not a convenience. Studies show we need at least four hugs per day to survive! I don’t know how I’m surviving, because it is difficult for me to warm up to someone enough to allow them to touch me. Perhaps that is you as well. But I eventually realized the importance of allowing others to touch me in appropriate physical ways. Jesus was always touching people, and my favorite story is of Him healing the leper in Matthew 8. This man had not been touched by ANYONE in years, and Jesus could have healed him with words alone, but He chose to touch him. I believe Jesus touched this man to show how important physical touch is to us as humans. He healed him physically, but He healed him emotionally as well through touch, thus showing us the necessity of physical touch. Are you meeting the hug minimum?
  • Physical touch helps us to grow. A human infant that is born must have loving, physical touch in order to survive and grow physically. But it is not just infants who need that loving touch—it is an important part of being a physically healthy adult as well. Remember those four hugs we need to survive? Apparently, we need 12 hugs a day to grow! Neurologists claim that the more we touch others, the happier we are. This is due to a lot of physiological occurrences that I don’t understand (because I’m not a scientist). But the other day, I ran into a friend in Dunkin Donuts, and I hugged him, even though we’re not that close. That hug made me realize my own lack in this area and gave me the boost I needed to smile during traffic, be nicer to my coworkers, and work harder at my job the rest of the day. That’s growth!
  • Physical touch releases us. We are “falling” into healthy habits not to separate ourselves in these three areas but to see how intricately connected our emotional, spiritual, and physical wellness are. Touching others in appropriate, non-creepy ways can lead to more vulnerability and openness in our relationships with others. I have often been emotionally released by the touch of a loved one—like my mother or a close friend. I have seen people’s demeanors change when I’ve reached out and touched them instead of put up a distancing emotional wall. I have felt the presence of the Holy Spirit when praying while holding hands with friends. The Bible speaks of God holding our hand as we go through fearful times (Isaiah 41:13; Psalm 73:23), and Jesus was constantly touching others to create connection. So how can you break down barriers and weave tighter bonds with others using appropriate physical touch?

It may not seem like much, but the appropriate, caring touch of another person can breathe life into us, sustain us, and help us to grow as adults. If you want to be physically healthy, you must allow yourself to touch and be touched by others—and break down the barriers we have built around ourselves.

Physically Healthy Habits: Exercise

health diagram by Stuart Miles

image courtesy of Stuart Miles / freedigitalphotos.net

I had been working out twice a day getting ready for my family’s annual cruise. I was doing extreme cardio in the morning and resistance training in the evening, but I couldn’t seem to get my body where I wanted it. Then the blood type diet suggested that I try yoga or light walks, so I tried both. My entire world changed as I felt stress leave my body and watched the weight drop off effortlessly. I wasn’t pushing myself like others did, but I felt good and my body felt the best it had ever felt! And while I don’t have a set schedule for when or how I do yoga these days, I know that when I’m feeling blah or need a little extra energy, I can pop in a yoga DVD or take a low-impact walk somewhere to clear my head and release stress.

The first thought anyone has about being physically healthy is always that we need to exercise. And while it’s true that our sedentary lifestyle has contributed to us being less physically healthy, we don’t have to accept that as the norm! Here are three thoughts to remember about the role exercise can play in your life:

  • Exercise is what you make of it. Sometimes, I do yoga. Sometimes, I just walk a lot around the building at my part-time job, making conversation while I walk up and down the stairs running errands. Other times, I take leisurely walks around my neighborhood. I don’t have a prescribed thing that I constantly do, because I don’t always want to get up super early or have time to do yoga. But I can always be moving. I can turn housework into exercise if I want to! Back in Jesus’ time, they didn’t have exercise studios—they just walked everywhere. They didn’t create a special time to exercise, it was just a part of their everyday life. This is a challenge for our incredibly sedentary lifestyles, but a good one to consider. So how can you make exercise a part of your everyday life?
  • Start small and work your way up. Rome wasn’t built in a day, and you won’t run in a marathon right away. You have to begin with a small goal that becomes a habit, and then keep increasing it if your goal is bigger. To begin, try walking ten minutes a day, every day. Or practicing yoga for fifteen minutes a day, three days a week. Substitute cleaning your house for one day of exercise. Play tennis or golf for an hour two days a week. These are small goals that can be easily met by giving up a television show or by skipping a Facebook check. The Bible encourages us to be faithful in the little things so that we can then be faithful in larger things (Luke 16:10), so how can you start small with exercising this week?
  • Every body is different. Not only are we different emotionally and spiritually, but we are different physically. My mom walks briskly with tons of arm movement to get benefits—she needs a high amount of cardio. I walk at a more moderate pace, elevating my heart rate only slightly to achieve the same results. Your body’s needs are different than anyone else’s because you are fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139)! You are unique, and it is part of your personal journey to figure out what your body needs for exercise. In addition, remember that every body IS different—different shapes and sizes. Aim for a healthier and better you, not the “you-version” of someone else. No one is perfect, and physical perfection should not be your goal. Your goal is to be the best you! So what does that mean for you?

I am not perfect in the area of exercise, but I am always challenging myself to improve in this area. However, I also accept myself, flaws and all, and try to be the best me I can be at all times! As I renew my personal goals to move more, I’m going to start small this week with 10-15 minutes, for at least three days. Will you join me?

Physically Healthy Habits: Sleep

health diagram by Stuart Miles

image courtesy of Stuart Miles / freedigitalphotos.net

In preparation for some much needed time off, I have been hustling pretty hard the last month. Normally, I sleep 8–9 hours per night and many days, I even nap for a couple of hours. But I noticed that recently, I had been staying up later to work and going to bed about 30 minutes later than normal. I have also been skipping my nap times to increase my productivity. In addition, I was working right up until bedtime, not giving my mind time to calm down or empty before hitting the pillow. I was waking up several times per night from strange dreams about work and not getting my best sleep. So it’s no surprise that I’ve been feeling rundown lately. This week, I have been trying to go to bed earlier than normal and this morning, I decided not to work. I’ve been taking it easy today, but I know the remedy: more and better sleep.

Sleep can be a controversial subject, especially to those of us who want to get the most done! But to be physically healthy, sleep is essential—for our physical health and our emotional health. With that in mind, here are three rules of thumb to keep in mind about sleep:

  • No Less Than Six. Sleeping fewer than six hours per night does not give your body adequate time to rest and/or recover from the previous day. And since you can’t technically “catch up” on sleep, it’s important to make sure you’re getting that six or more hours each night. The experts in the medical field say that getting a good night’s rest affects everything from mental alertness to relationships. In fact, experts believe that less than seven hours is harmful to a person physically and emotionally, causing workplace accidents and making it easier for you to get sick. Medical experts have now determined that lack of sleep can also lead to increased risk of heart attack, stroke, obesity, and impairment for unborn children. So do you want to lose some weight? It might not be exercise you need—it might be sleep!
  • Ignore the haters. They may hate on you for getting by on so little sleep or for sleeping too much! I have been accused of sleeping my life away, missing out on all the fun, being depressed, and just plain sloth. I endure a lot of teasing because I am single and yet I am in bed before or at 9:00 p.m. each night. But honestly, the more I sleep, the better I feel. I know what my body needs, and I pay attention to what my body needs. I don’t overschedule myself, I leave early from get-togethers, and I stick to my routine. You have to know yourself in order to shrug off the criticism of others—so figure out what your body needs, and stick to it. How many hours of sleep do you need to run at peak performance? Focus on that, not the hate!
  • Check Yourself. Can’t sleep? Snoring keep you from sleeping well? Don’t just let it go—get yourself checked out! My mom snored for the first 25 years of my life. One weekend, she went on a church women’s retreat, and her snoring kept everyone else up the entire night. One of the women approached her before the weekend ended and said, “I was listening as you snored, and I think you stop breathing when you sleep. You should have that checked out.” My mom got it checked out and was diagnosed with sleep apnea—a disease that can kill you if untreated. But it’s not just physical—it’s emotional. Is there something bothering you—a relationship, a conflict, or something that’s keeping you awake at night? Solve those issues as well, before lack of sleep wrecks your health.

Psalm 127:2 says that we do not have to rise early, go to bed late, or be anxious because God will give even sleep to those He loves. So if you don’t get enough sleep, I challenge you to ask God how you can practice the physically healthy habit of getting more shut-eye. Your well-being depends on it!

Physically Healthy Habits: Eating Well

health diagram by Stuart Miles

image courtesy of Stuart Miles / freedigitalphotos.net

I had just had a pretty balanced lunch: leftover roast beef from the crock pot with potatoes and carrots. It was delicious and good, but I felt terrible. I was lethargic and felt like I needed a nap, but I had another few hours of work to go! I went back to my desk and decided to Google why I was feeling so bad after such a seemingly good lunch. I had read a few results when I came across an article explaining that I was eating the wrong type of food for my blood type. I went out and bought the book the next night and read it over the weekend. I changed my diet immediately and began feeling better physically and emotionally! I lost weight without even trying and got rid of some health issues I had been dealing with. I couldn’t believe it—eating well had changed my life.

Everyone knows that exercising is important, but as one Internet meme says, great abs are made in the kitchen! I’m not going to tell you HOW to eat right–YOU decide how you eat right! But here are three ways to eat WELL:

  • Find what works for you. The same eating plan doesn’t work for everyone. I have friends who are paleo, some who are vegan, and others who eat whatever they want in moderation—all successfully. You may have to try a few different things to find what works. I have been on several different eating plans, including the South Beach diet, a weight watchers type group, and just eating whatever I want in moderation. However, as noted, I now follow the Blood Type Diet by Peter D’Adamo because it cleared up a lot of different health-related issues I was having. It continues to work for me—I can say that I have not been to the doctor in almost three years, I have not gotten sick for five years, and I have never felt better. Whatever works best for you, figure that out and do it!
  • Research your food sources. I personally am a non-GMO proponent because I’ve seen how non-GMO food has helped me. When I cut out GMOs, I feel better, I have fewer health issues (like eczema and digestion issues), and quite frankly, non-GMO food tastes better! I shop at farmers’ markets, health food stores, and regular grocery stores—but I do a lot of research on the things I buy, especially at the regular store. It is important to know where your food is coming from. I personally don’t like eating meats that have been pumped with antibiotics, vegetables or fruits that have been genetically modified to withstand pesticides, and dairy products that have been laced with hormones. That’s not how food should be consumed, in my opinion. But you have to come to your own conclusions about your food sources—and research will help you with that.
  • Give yourself a break. I don’t follow the Blood Type Diet 100%, and neither should you follow any diet 100% (unless your doctor has prescribed it). Sometimes, I eat GMOs. I like sweets, and I allow myself to eat them! I do it for my body—so that it doesn’t get too out of whack if I have a food I technically should be avoiding. I don’t want to feel bloated or have a headache or stuffed up nose just for enjoying a banana. But I also do it for my mind: if I go too long without having sweets, then I tend to overindulge myself the next time. So I definitely am a proponent of having one cheat day a week! Just make sure it is only one day, that you control your portion size, and that you surround it with eating well.

Food is our physical sustenance. The right foods will give us fuel and energy and leave us feeling better than before we ate. So if you want to be physically healthy, make sure you are not just eating right, but that you are eating well! “And whatever you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God” (1 Corinthians 10:31)! Bon appetit!

Fall Into Healthy Habits!

health pyramid by Stuart Miles

image courtesy of Stuart Miles / freedigitalphotos.net

Pornography addiction is a habit that takes up quite a bit of your time. It’s just like any other addiction—once you get into it, you need it desperately and spend most of your time trying to fill the void of time with your addiction. But substance abuse and pornography addictions are not the only bad habits we accumulate. Last September, I was just beginning my coaching ministry, and I wasn’t quite sure how to handle my new part-time status at my job and starting my business from the ground up. Suffice to say, I spent a lot of time thinking about what I should be doing and not enough time doing it! I built some incredibly unhealthy habits—sleeping too much, trying to work at home from my bed, not exercising—and in return, I did not create many healthy ones. This summer, I decided that I would do things differently. I would find ways to be healthier—not just physically, but emotionally and spiritually as well.

September is a great time to begin anew—summer has ended, school has started for the kiddos, and change is in the air. Over the next three months of autumn, Pushy Prophet Girl Ministries will be talking about how we can fall into healthy habits in the three biggest areas of our lives:

Emotionally. In September, we will explore how to create better emotional habits in our lives. Being emotionally healthy is one of the most important steps you can take—so building good emotional habits is one of my ministry’s focuses! This month, we will discuss our hang-ups—forgiveness, anyone?—and how to better handle our hurts. How can you overcome that spirit of being offended? The Word frequently talks about compassion, but in what ways do we live that out in our daily lives? How do we practice responding to others in loving ways, even when they aren’t being loving towards us? We will talk about these things and more this month.

Spiritually.  Pete Scazzero says that you can’t be spiritually mature without being emotionally mature first! That’s why we will talk about our spiritual health during the month of October, after we have addressed our emotional habits. What are some spiritually healthy habits we can begin to practice? When can fasting help our spiritual life? What is worship—is it just what we do in church on Sundays? How does giving to others affect us spiritually? Our spiritual lives consist of more than just prayer, attending church, and reading Scripture. While we will talk about those things, we will also discuss many more spiritual habits we can practice in healthy ways.

Physically. We mature and grow from the inside out! Once we have thoroughly discussed our emotional and spiritual health, we will focus on our physical health habits. We will look at the different aspects of our physical bodies and how caring for them is not only a Biblical command but a necessity in this day and age. How does eating healthy become a habit? Where does sleep fit into your fitness regimen? If your body is a temple, are you caring for it the way God wants you to? I am always seeking to improve in this area as well, so I can’t wait to begin talking about these issues and more in November.

Today is a brand new day, and I am here to help you and cheer you on towards being fearlessly fulfilled. Are you ready to fall into emotionally, spiritually, and physically healthier habits? Then contact me today to get started on a personal coaching journey and keep checking my blog this fall for ways to become the best you!

Becoming Fearlessly Fulfilled!

Pushy Prophet Girl Ministries initially was started to help people discover more about themselves—their spiritual gifts, in particular—to help them become great leaders and better people. Recently, God has shown me some incredible things about Himself and myself that He is calling me to share with all of you. God is asking me to work with you on becoming fearlessly fulfilled.

fulfilled by nixxphotography

image courtesy of nixxphotography / freedigitalphotos.net

What does it mean to become fearlessly fulfilled? In looking back at my own life—my addiction to pornography and issues with lust, my troubles maintaining healthy relationships with others, my problems with anger—I realize that there was a decision to make different choices in my life—choices that affected all areas of my life: emotional, physical, and spiritual. I became fearlessly fulfilled by focusing on three areas:

  • Emotional health. I wasn’t emotionally mature as a 30-year old. In fact, I was downright immature and other people disliked being around me. I believed people were objects to be used for my pleasure instead of God-given gifts to be treasured. When people didn’t do what I wanted, I threw temper tantrums and was judgmental, angry, hurtful, and obnoxious. How did I remedy this? I resolved to attend Celebrate Recovery to work through all my past issues. I became fully involved, attending a 10-month step study while waving goodbye to my hurts, habits, and hang-ups. (Psalm 147:3)
  • Physical health. When you have wrong thoughts about yourself, it extends beyond your mind and into your physical body. I was stuck in cycles of eating badly and exercising in the wrong ways (if at all). How did I remedy this? Once I was emotionally and mentally in a better place, once I had plowed through all my past “junk,” I was ready to work on myself physically. I started the Blood Type Diet (Eat Right 4 Your Blood Type by Dr. Peter D’Adamo), which helped me get both food and exercise under control and helped me to thrive physically. (1 Corinthians 3:17)
  • Spiritual health. I did not know who I was in the Lord, and when you don’t know who you are in Him, you will try to find it in other places—even in the church! How did I remedy this? I learned about my motivational spiritual gifts. Knowing that I was CREATED BY GOD to be a bold pushy prophet girl (and not a mild mercy woman) changed my entire outlook on life. I felt accepted and understood for the first time in my life. In addition, learning about the gifts improved my understanding of others, changed how I interact with others, and allows me to teach others about their own gifts and uniqueness. (1 Peter 2:9)

It wasn’t just one of these areas that I had to improve—I had to improve all of them. Your emotional health, physical health, and spiritual health are intricately intertwined, and thriving in all three areas is important in becoming the person God wants you to be.

This year, I want to help you become fearlessly fulfilled in your own life! Pushy Prophet Girl Ministries is offering personal coaching, group coaching, free teleseminars, and training and workshops on DISC and spiritual gifts to help you tackle all three areas of your health. If you are tired of wondering if God has something more planned for you, if you can ever become whole, or if you really can get truly healthy in all areas of your life, then contact me today for a free 30-minute Identity Intensive. Let 2014 be the year you truly become fearlessly fulfilled!