Category Archives: perseverance

Homesick girl

 
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When you have moved thousand miles away from home you are excited. It’s an adventure. You are a little scared, yet you do it. You packed your bags and made this quantum leap into the future.

Now it is a reality.
You faced a totally new environment, new experiences, and new faces. You have people around you, yet you don’t know how to connect. You feel lonely and sometimes scared.
You see happy FaceBook and Instagram posts from everyone else. You do the same… You are trying to keep the appearances and you have no one to share your true feelings with. Yet too often you feel empty and alone, sad, scared and angry. The closest people in your life don’t get you. You don’t share this turmoil of emotions with people you left behind in fear of hearing “we told you so!” You continue to hide and the sadness wells up inside of you, taking over.
You ask the enevitable, “What’s wrong with me?” You want to snap out of these feelings of loneliness, sadness, and helplessness. You hate the feeling. You are used to be powerful and in control. You want to scream, and you want to cry. What is going on?

You are ok. You are going through inevitable emotions of a girl away from home. You will be fine. Feeling homesick will subside. It’s temporary.

You will thrive.
You will find more than just coping mechanisms.
You will rediscover yourself.
You will create beautiful friendships.
You will feel vibrant and alive in this new place.

Sometimes you just need some encouragement. Other times you need to read a book that will connect you with your inner strength. You may need a coach or a mentor to guide you through it. Whatever you choose, do something that will reconnect you with your strength, reconnect you with the power of God in you.

You have it. Only a gutsy woman would do what you did. 

You will thrive!

Much love on your journey.

💖Lena

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Challenge of a Caterpillar Metamorphosis

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A friend of mine shared a joke:
It’s good to be a caterpillar: all you do is eat, eat, EAT, EAT, than roll yourself up, sleep, sleep, sleep, than wake up as a beauty!
Don’t we wish it was a case for all of us?
I want to share methods I successfully used in the past. All lead to weight loss. I love to eat, so as many I often gained quite a few extra pounds in winter. I accumulated a few go-to strategies when I need to loose some weight and stay healthy for the future. Now I would like to put them on a list. I did that for my anxiety remedies and I am glad I did. Over time I have tendency to forget things I used in the past. When someone reminds me I am very grateful. Many of my friends who love food and are not blessed with super-fast metabolism have tried many of these methods. Please remind me if there is something I missed but you like. Here is what I remember I successfully tried in the past:
– Calorie counting. It was a good approach to realize how much I was actually eating. It helped to learn calorie contents of my favorite foods and I still remember some of them. I have a book with lists of food and calories and there are apps for it. Some restaurants provide calorie contents, but I try to avoid eating out when I diet- too much temptation. When I first tried to count calories I realized how Much I underestimated the amounts I ate! I need to consume no more than 1500 calories in order to loose weight and 2000 calories a day to maintain healthy weight. This method is very time consuming and a few people told me it causes them anxiety. We don’t want that! But for others it was a very good tool.
– Food and exercise log/ journal. I pulled it out to look at my old notes and see what I did and how it worked. Even if not journaling every day making entries now and then are beneficial. For a few days now I have been writing what I ate, keeping an exercise log as well. I am also back to weighing myself every morning. I thought I will not do it this time, but it was a habit for so long- I think I’ll keep it- I like numbers after all.
– Cleanse/fasting. This method worked, but I don’t want to do it again now- it is too harsh, I think. I may go on a liquid diet one day a week or at least for half a day- I’ll see. I like juicing and drinking water with lemon or apple cider vinegar. Or I mix powder of dried vegetables into a drink (green powder). I am back to rotating between a green drink, water with lemon or apple cider vinegar in the morning. Sometimes I sip it throughout a day. They are alkaline and because my stomach is very acidic I try to counteract that.
There is also different kind of fasting for spiritual purpose, but I will write about it some other time.
– Juicing. Various juices are beneficial but some can be harmful in large quantities. Actually any dieting can be harmful- I did consult my Naturopathic doctor in the past. I like to juice fresh organic fruit and vegetables but not every day. I remember my mother saying to be very careful with beet juice- I’ll need to look up why. There are numerous books on juicing and receipts on the internet to choose from.
– Smoothies and shakes. I like them only need not add too much fruit, protein powder or nuts- it all adds calories event though healthy overall. I’ll make them richer in the main tangency phase, but not yet.
– Green powder- a good substitute for juicing when I don’t have time.
– Adding more vegetables to my diet in all forms: raw and cooked is a great way to healthier eating. My favorite comfort food ingredient is potato, but I mix it with plenty of non- starchy veggies and some meat in a stew or soup with lots of spices-yum! I often share recipes on Facebook, as many of you know. Please share your healthy recipes.
– Psyllium husk. On occasion I add it to water for a filling drink with basically no calories. It also is a good way to eliminate toxins. To avoid constipation I use a tea spoon of powder in a glass of water no more than once a day. Some detoxifying kits are sold with laxatives in them but I am not a big fan, even though I used them in the past.
– Desserts. Apples, blueberries and oranges is what I switched to last week. Good-bye chocolate candy, I’ll miss you! But I still crave chocolate. Dark chocolate is better, but now I am not going to have even that. Today I mixed cocoa powder with some hot water with stevia ( I also used a little honey in the past). The mixture was quite bitter and some would not like it, but it was a good enough substitute for me.

Fundamental for success is self-discipline. It is also good to have accountability.
Joining Weight Watchers or another group is a great option because it gives support, accountability and the feel of the community. I have not tried it personally but heard good things about them. A few times I joined my friends in weight-loss competition and it was fun and got competitive.

Good luck on your quest for health and vitality. I am praying for my friends and readers.

Weight-loss challenges

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I belong to a group of people who likes variety. Sticking to just one weight-loss strategy, even a well-proven one, would not work for for me long- time. I like variety otherwise I get extremely bored. Some people prepare and portion their meals for a week in advance. I’m sure it’s a very good strategy and will produce great results. I may try to do that for one week but after a while I will need to switch to something else.
My friend Stephanie Boyer went on her annual master cleanse a few days ago. The way I remember it is basically drinking lemon water for a number of days in order to detoxify. I did cleanses before but this time I really wanted to take it easy on myself in a beginning…
Diet-wise one of my favorite ways to eat right is having home-made healthy soups. I don’t use any cream or butter/oil, but I do use broth for most of them. I don’t follow recipes most of the time as I like to be creative with my cooking. When my concoction is not particularly to my taste- c’mon, it’s often only boiled veggies!- I blend it and than soup goes down easier. Today I made beef bone broth, than chopped celery, carrots, onions, mushrooms, broccoli and brussels sprouts. I added some spices that were on hand: thyme, ginger powder, basil, salt, pepper and a mix of dry seasoning. I used my handy-dandy immersion blender to whip it up in a purée. If you want to try it but don’t like the texture of a blended soup just leave your vegetables intact.
For next few days I think I will stick with just soups and maybe raw veggies blends.
I haven’t stepped on my scales for months – big mistake. When I finally did this morning and saw a number it scared me. I gained about ten pounds in two months! I’m going to lose weight not only for vanity but for health reasons as well.
I know how to develop a strategy and produce desired results. I’m going to apply it to this particular problem. I know my girlfriends will keep me accountable, as well as my life coach, Kathleen Brooks. Ladies, I need you! Yesterday I went to a party and cheated… It was very difficult to pass on an amazing cake (and usually I am quite picky with my desserts) and blintzes with caviar- c’mon I’m only human! It always have been easier to eat right when I ate my meals at home. Starting a new eating plan is always a challenge for me. I often slip into old eating habits easier in the beginning, before I develop new eating habits.
Anyone wants to join me? Share your strategies for this challenge?
If you would like to make a comment- comment button is on a very bottom of this post in a right-hand corner.

Seeking Guidance

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“For we walk by faith, not by sight.” 2 Corinthians 5:7

Story of Erik Weihenmayer, who went blind at age 13, is a story of courage and perseverance. In his interview with Oprah Eric recalled how a bus driver who drove the van for handicapped children taught him a very valuable lesson. The boy hated blindness and was complaining every day that he doesn’t belong on a disabled children bus, that he should be riding with normal kids- his friends. One day the bus driver, who heard Eric complain day in and day out stopped the vehicle and told the boy to get out. Driver didn’t leave him on the side of the road though. He climbed out as well and surprisingly threw a basketball at Eric. The ball bounced off the blind boy… But then driver told Eric to stretch his hands out, warned him when to catch the ball and Eric did just that. The lesson learned there was to allow somebody to guide you if you can’t see.

This event had a profound effect on Erik’s life. In some way it prompted this young man to achieve what may seem totally impossible under such circumstances. He became a wrestling champion in High school, and later a Middle school teacher and a wrestling coach. Among other things like skiing, white water kayaking or skydiving Eric scaled seven highest mountains in the world- one on each continent. He became the first blind person to ever reach the summit of Mount Everest- the highest peak in the world.

Hearing Erik’s story reminded me how God can lead us to victory, even if at times we can’t see how it can ever be possible. We can accomplish even the unthinkable when we seek guidance and wisdom. God is the one who first gives us vision, equips us with abilities and gives courage and strength. When I listened to “Walk With Me, O My Lord” by Estelle White I was reminded to follow my Ultimate Guide.

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