Feeling Safe in An Unsafe World: Three Ways to Create Your Own Safety Bubble

Episode 53 Welcome To Your Life Podcast! Feeling Safe in An Unsafe World: Three Ways to Create Your Own Safety Bubble

     For the longest time, I abdicated my safety to others, my parents, employers, husbands, family members, and even in a way, to my children.  Being their mom gave me purpose and anchored me to the world.  I needed this because my own childhood had given me a rocky start in life.  My favorite memory of my father was the day he picked me up from school to walk me home.  I was eight.  I still remember how happy and safe I felt holding his hand walking down the Cleveland streets on that bright sunny day. Unfortunately, he left us shortly after that, and I only saw him sporadically until I was 24 years old. 

     His departure left me feeling abandoned, and I buried those feelings and how they made me feel for an awfully long time.   If you carry any unhealed feelings due to trauma, abandonment, heartbreak, grief, or disappointment.  It can be challenging to feel safe in the world.  The incident or incidents you suffered might have cracked or completely crumbled your foundation.  And left you feeling untethered and alone.  Sometimes, you might get the feeling that you are just going to float away.

     You might feel like I did for many years, that you have no real control over your life.  If you think like this, victim thinking can creep into your mind and set up shop and become the lens by which you see the world.  You may find comfort in living like a victim in the world. I know from personal experience that this is an unhealthy way to think and live.  This type of thinking is not meant to empower you but to keep you stuck.   It dramatically diminishes your ability to heal and make real changes in your life. 

If you are tired of depending on the kindness of others if you want to feel safe in a world that is anything but safe most of the time, especially for women and people of color.  You must put your healing first and begin the healing process. I want to share with you three ways to start and create your own safety bubble.

Three Ways to Create Safety

Heal

     Ultimately our safety comes from within; regardless of what happened to us, we cannot look to others to make us feel whole and safe.  It is not fair to them, and no matter how hard they try as a human they will fail us.  Creating your own safety net requires that you deal once and for all with what ails you.  Being open, honest, and compassionate with yourself and realizing that healing is an ongoing process that will probably take longer than you imagine, so be patient.  Get some help, do not try to do this alone.  A coach, a therapist, or a support group will be loving company on your healing journey.

Belief in Something Greater:

When my son wanted to make peace with his anger, he turned to Buddhism.  As a Christian, when I feel so out of sorts and need a steady hand, I hold on to Jesus.  Whoever your higher power is, take this time to study and become intimate partners during your healing process. “The mind is an incredibly powerful tool. It can be used for good but also go to waste when neglected or abused. In times of trouble, we tend to move away from positivity. We go from a state of abundance to a state of lack. But faith is the tool that helps replenish abundance in the heart and the spirit, not just in the mind.”   There will be a time when your human strength and determination are not enough to keep you going, and this is where your higher power steps in and take up the slack. 

Create Your Village

     You will find that in most of my writings, I harp on this powerful yet underestimated tool.  We are so hellbent on doing things on our own that we forget the power of being part of a tribe of like-minded individuals.  “Our priorities become distorted and unclear as we attempt to meet so many conflicting needs at once.” Your tribe will help you to stay balanced and focused, so that you can reach your goals that much faster. So, if you cannot find a village, create one; if you need help, reach out to me, I am just an email away. 

    Your healing journey will be whatever you make it, it is not for the faint of heart, and there will be times when quitting seems like the best and easiest option.  But, if you want to create a safe, beautiful, mindful life that you live with purpose, intention, and joy, it is worth every struggle you will encounter, and remember, you are not alone.

With Peace and Love,

Renee

So nice to meet you, I am a Certified Coach and yoga teacher, host of the award-winning Welcome to Your Life Podcast,  and the founder of the Courageous Woman’s Book Club. Thank you so much for checking out today’s post.

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When The People You Love Don’t Support You

Listen to Episode 52 of the Welcome to Your Life Podcast: When the People You Love Don’t Support You

     When four of my children decided that they wanted to move from our home in Ohio to Texas, the momma in me wanted to try to stop them from going. I worried about their safety and wondered when I was going to see my grandsons. I thought to myself, why in the world would you move in the middle of a pandemic. I had a whole host of reasons why they should not move, but I did not share one of them. Not, because I was selfless but because I know how it feels when the people who love you do not support your dreams.

    Growing up I dreamt of becoming a dancer and a model. I studied ballet and modern dance. I couldn’t always afford dance classes, so a lot of what I learned was self-taught. I got modeling gigs in local department stores and had convinced myself that after high school, I was going to move to New York and try my luck. My mother and grandmother hit the roof. My mother said I was too short to model. At 5’6″, I thought she may be right. It was the same reaction I got when I won a summer scholarship to M.I.T.   My grandmother told my mother she should not let me go, and my mom worried about my safety and not wanting to be separated from her only daughter would not sign the parental consent forms for me to go. I let my dreams go way too quickly. I did not trust that I would make the right decision, and I didn’t have anyone in my corner to push me out of my comfort zone.

     Consider this your kick to move out of your comfort zone.  You have decided to finally create a plan to reach that goal that has been nudging at your heart.  You have packed up your kids and your belongings and decided to end a relationship that is long past its due date.  Your doctor has just diagnosed you with a chronic illness, curable, but it will require that you make some drastic lifestyle changes.  Would you agree with me that these are all positive endeavors?  Yes! They are, you have decided to become proactive and take control of your life.

     With all this positive action, you would think that the people you love would jump on the bandwagon and become your biggest cheerleaders.  Sadly, that is not always the case.  So, what do you do when the people who love you do not support you? If you find that finding support for your dream is few and far between.  It may be time to eliminate the dead weight in your life and start fresh, filling your circle with folks who love and support you.

     When I start to work with a new client, one of the first things I like for them to identify is their support system. When you try to do something that you have never done before, you do not need to be pulled away from your focus by family and friends who do not support your vision for your life.

That is not to say that they must agree with you completely, but they should refrain from throwing water on your dreams by reminding you of all the times you did not quite hit the mark in the past. Sometimes, they might think they are helpful with comments like:

 “You can lose the weight on your own.”

 “You left him before, remember.”

 “Are you even trying? Try harder.”

 “He is a good provider. Are you sure you cannot work it out?  No one will blame you if you stay.”

 “Just eat less and work out more.”

 “Shouldn’t you be thinking of retiring instead of starting a new career?”.

 “People your age don’t run marathons.”

 “Is the pain that bad or is it in your head.”

 “Your time has passed; it’s time to let the younger folks have a turn.

 These are just a few of the comments my clients and I have heard when we confided to our closest confidants about our plans to make changes in our lives. Unfortunately, when they recall these conversations, many clients break down in tears. Because the truth is it can be heartbreaking to find that the foundation you have built your life on will not support the new you.

Whether it is losing weight, ending a relationship, starting a new career path, or pursuing your purpose, and maybe like me, your new career path is your purpose. You must create a support system that supports you unconditionally, holds you accountable when you do not believe you can do it and loves you no matter how many times you must start over.

If you have found yourself facing this type of resistance, you have probably asked why?  Why wouldn’t the people who claimed to love me not want me to do better, be better, live better?  The answer is fear.  They could be afraid that you will reach a goal and realize that you have outgrown them, or they might be worried that they will lose you to a new group of friends.  It could be that they are afraid that you might fail, and they want to spare you the pain of failing.  But failure is a lesson in itself.  That is a lesson for another day.

Whatever their fear, you cannot let it stop you from moving forward.  It is time to create a new inner circle.  Anyone who does not fall in step with your plans is dead weight, and you should eliminate them immediately.  I know that deadweight is a harsh term.  I am using it on purpose to trigger just how dire this situation is for your success.  This will probably be one of the most challenging tasks you will ever have to do, but ask yourself how you will feel next week, next month, or next year if you are in the same spot you are in now. 

If it makes you feel better, you do not have to cut them out of your life entirely; just keep them out of your inner circle. I love this quote by fellow blogger Jeri Clay, host of the “Shine your Life-Make your Life Shine Blog. “With like-minded people, you feel comfortable in sharing your dreams without judgment. You can express ideas freely with others who understand the hustle. Everyone will have different dreams and goals but will have the same drive towards the achievement.” 

Ready to get started:  Make a list of three people you can count on to support your journey towards a new you.  It is time to create your village. These folks can be professional supports such as a pastor, coach or therapist, or natural supports, including your mom, sister, cousin, best friend, or favorite church member.

If you want real success in your life, you must surround yourself with like-minded people who will help you empower your mindset and lend you the emotional fuel you need to keep going when you feel like you are running on empty.  You can do this; I believe in you.

With Peace and Love,

Renee

Download this month’s book selection, the Courageous Woman’s Bible Discover Journal; if you are looking to connect or reconnect with God in a powerful way, this journal is for you.  Plus, I show you how to incorporate your daily time with God in as little as 15 minutes a day.  Start or end your day with the word of God,  and empower yourself to move through any obstacle life throws your way.  $1 of your purchase will go to help the Atlanta Mission continue its mission of supporting, clothing, and feeding homeless mothers and their children.  Click here to download your copy today!

Episode 51 Yes! You Can Find Love After 50: A Conversation with Internationally Recognized Dating Coach Lisa Copeland

On today’s show, we have Lisa Copeland. Lisa is a best-selling Author, Speaker, Love Coach, and Dating Expert.  She is a leading, internationally recognized expert and dating coach for women over 50. She is the author of The Winning Dating Formula For Women Over 50 and is a regular contributor to The Huffington Post/50, The Huffington Post Women, The Examiner, and Tribune News Services newspapers. Her website, http://www.FindAQualityMan.com was named one of the Top 5 Online Dating Services by The Examiner and one of the 10 Best Senior Dating Blogs by DatingAdvice.com.

On today’s show, you will learn:  

That it is not too late to find the man of your dreams.  

The art of flirting.  How to improve your confidence so you attract a quality man.  

Lisa’s Website: Find A Quality Man https://www.findaqualityman.com

Download Lisa’s Free eBook: 5 Little Known Secrets For Finding A Quality Man

Apply for a Complimentary Session with Lisa: https://www.findaqualityman.com/session-request

Enjoy this episode and share it with a friend!

With Peace and Love, Renee —

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I Will Show Myself Compassion and Open Myself Up to Growth

Introduction:

     We are often quick to show compassion to others, we give them grace when they make mistakes or hurt us, but we do not allow ourselves this same compassion.  True growth has a learning curve, and as we learn, we will make mistakes; it is okay to make mistakes; instead of running away from them, we need to acknowledge these mistakes to give ourselves room to grow. 

     This week show yourself some compassion as you pursue your dreams, as you face challenges head-on when you fall-lift yourself back up and ask yourself, what did I learn?   Will you give yourself room to grow?

The Affirmation

I am a work in progress. I give myself room to learn and grow.

I will try new things.   I will keep an open mind and move beyond my comfort zone. My new adventures might include skydiving or writing poetry.

Whatever I choose, I will allow myself the grace to enjoy it.

I will try new things like listening to country music, rap, and jazz. I will replace my usual morning run with a yoga class.

I will seek out challenges. I will volunteer for challenging assignments at work. I will talk about sensitive subjects with my family and friends.

I will not be afraid to ask questions. I will gratify my curiosity.

I will welcome feedback. I invite colleagues and clients to let me know what they think about my performance. I thank my loved ones for helpful reminders. I will use their input to make positive changes.

I will let my light shine as I teach others. I can use my knowledge to teach students and mentor newcomers in my field.

I will expand my mind by reading books I love and new works of fiction and nonfiction.

I will take classes. I will push past fear, sign up for courses at my local university, and subscribe to e-learning platforms.

I will make learning fun. I will visit my local library to browse for free audiobooks, movies, and events.

I will travel to other countries or explore new places in my neighborhood or town.

 I will practice speaking foreign languages at ethnic restaurants and grocery stores.

Today, I train my mind to think. I add to my knowledge and skills. I pursue my passion for learning.  I will remind myself that my mind is powerful and capable of accomplishing the goals and dreams I have for my life.

Self-Reflection Questions:

  1. What is one new skill that would help me to advance my career?
  2. What is the difference between working hard and working smart?
  3. Why is it important to adopt a growth mindset?
  4. What is one way I can show myself compassion this week?
  5. What feelings arise in me as I answer these questions?

With Peace and Love,

Renee

PS

Whenever you are ready, I can help you create the future you’ve always wanted:

Join the private Welcome To Your Life Midlife Made Easier Facebook group, a curated community exclusively for fun-loving midlife. Learn from and connect with other midlife women this is your village a safe place to vent your concerns and celebrate your wins.  Click here to join (note: you must answer the questions to be considered).

How to Use Prayer And/or Meditation to Manage Anxiety

 Let me be clear, if you are someone who has been diagnosed with anxiety, I am not suggesting that you give up your medication and therapy in favor of prayer and meditation.  As a social service worker and Certified Life Coach, I have seen the wonderous benefits my clients experience when adding prayer and meditation to their traditional treatment plans.  So, I am asking you to be open as you read today’s post because maybe adding prayer and meditation could be an extra dose of protection to successfully manage your anxiety.

     Did you know that anxiety is the most common mental illness in the United States?  About 40 million Americans have been diagnosed with anxiety. The U.S. spends as much as $42 billion on the American government to diagnose and treat anxiety disorders.    It is expected, especially in today’s world of political and social unrest, to feel anxious from time to time.  But if your anxiety becomes overwhelming, and you want to add some realistic strategies to your prescription medication and therapy regime, one technique you may wish to try is prayer and meditation.

     From personal experience, I can tell you that adding both to my daily self-care routine has helped me get a handle on my anxiety and panic attacks in a way that I never thought possible.  But you might be asking which one should you try or should you use both.

Which is Better: Prayer or Meditation?

     The answer very is simple: Use whichever you prefer. Some people have a close relationship with a higher power, while others do not. No matter what your religious belief, you can manage your anxiety through your thoughts and affirmations.

     If you like to pray, that is great. If you want to meditate instead, then do it!  I like to pray and then meditate on the scripture that is included in my morning devotional.  But you can choose Whichever technique makes you feel the most comfortable.  Taking your mental health seriously is the first step to healing and finding the right combination of therapeutic treatments.  Remember, this is about you getting better, and you know best what will make you feel at ease.

Getting Started

You do not need any fancy equipment to get started.  As a matter of fact, you can start right now with a deep breath. Pull the air deep down into your diaphragm and let it out slowly. Do this deep breathing technique several times, and you will begin to feel calmer.

My students look strange when I ask them if they are breathing effectively? Because if not, then you are only taking in enough air to expand the top part of your lungs expands; you may think this is okay because your chest rises and falls.  However, when you use the breath as a calming tool- your whole belly rises and falls, not just your upper chest because your entire lungs are being filled with fresh air.

     Before your anxiety begins to overwhelm, all your senses try practicing deep breathing as part of your own self-care routine.  The more you do it, the more it will become an automatic coping strategy that helps you manage anxiety and any other part of your life that needs an adjustment.

Here are some other tips to help you feel calm while praying or meditating:

Use a mantra. Inhale while you give yourself positive thoughts and feelings. Exhale anything negatives you are thinking or feeling. Breathing is the rhythm of life. Use it to your advantage.  My favorite mantra is I am Strong!  I say this because I felt like life was happening to me for so many years, and I had no control.  Now I know that is not true.

String together three scriptures:  I call this a string prayer.  I string together three of my favorite scriptures, and I pray them each morning.  I also use these scriptures as part of my mantra when I meditate.

Make it part of your self-care routine:  To really reap the benefits to pray or meditate at the same time each day.  Try practice when you are not in crisis. Here is a challenge for you, decide when you will do and write it on the calendar at the same time for the next 30 days.  It does not have to take a long time; try two minutes each day to start and add more time when you feel comfortable.

Laugh More. This was a hard one for me; I used my smile to hide what I was really thinking and feeling for years.  But now I use it to make myself feel better after a long hard day.  Try saying “ho, ho, ho, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha” and other silly phrases out loud. When you do, you will start to smile, then grin, and then laugh for real! And when you are laughing, it hard to frown or feel anxious!
 

Get an accountability buddy:  I think this is the best way to ensure success.   Your accountability buddy will help you to keep going when you want to quit.  You can join a church, take up yoga, or find a support group for anxiety. You are not alone; other people share your struggle; besides helping yourself, you could help someone else struggling with anxiety; think of it this way, someone needs a friend, and they are waiting for you.

Now It is Your Turn!

     As with any step towards personal peace, the first thing you must do is just start.  Do not wait for perfect conditions because they will never come.  Something or someone will always pop up in your life to steal your joy.  One thing to avoid when you start your prayer and/or meditation practice is the notion that you will be able to conquer it in a week.  Be patient with yourself and show yourself some compassion.   It took time to get where you are, and it will take time to get back to where you want to be.

Do not forget to speak with your therapist or coach and let them know that you have started this journey; they will be more than happy to support you and provide you with helpful feedback as you work to strengthen your breathing. Laugh. Meditate or pray routine.   The greatest gift you can give yourself is joy, which is a gift worth waiting for.

With Peace and Love,

Renee.

Download this Month’s WTYL book club selection and help me raise $700 to help the Atlanta Mission continue their work providing food, shelter, and clothing for homeless mothers and their children . $1 of every sale will go towards this worthy cause: The Courageous Woman’s Discovery Bible Journal Link:  Check out their good work here: Homeless Shelter in Atlanta – Atlanta Mission | Hope Lives Here

I Have the Courage I Need to Heal

Introduction

I love this quote by Brene’ Brown, “you can have courage, or you can have comfort,

but you can’t have both.”

We sometimes overlook that healing requires us to take a journey that needs a depth of faith and courage that we will not find outside of ourselves. And I know some of you are saying, I just want to lose weight, I just want a new job, I just want my marriage not to suck, I just want my kids to behave.  But none of those things will help us to heal the cracks within us.

You may not like this, but change must begin with you, and your change begins the moment you decide to heal.  Because true happiness does not come from losing weight or the good behavior of other people, it comes from an acute awareness of who we are as women and the level of self-regard we have for ourselves.

     Watch out for roadblocks on your healing journey.  Roadblocks can come in two ways from ourselves or from others.  We may believe that we are not worthy of healing or feel stuck because of the level of apathy we feel.  We tell ourselves things like this is just the way I am, or I am too old to change now.  We have been in our current condition for so long we find it hard to move forward.   

     Do not be surprise that when you make the decision to heal, not everyone is going to celebrate with you.  Watch out for codependent relationships with people who try to convince you they love you even though they mistreat you, or the codependent partner who says you do not have to change because you are fine just the way you are.  Which is code for you are just where I need you to be so that I feel comfortable, and I do not want you to upset my world.

     Read this affirmation in whole or in part every day and answer the questions.  Your answers may surprise you, healing from trauma, heart break, or disappointments does not happen overnight show yourself some grace and compassion and surround yourself with people who love you.

The Affirmation

Moving forward can be scary, especially when I need to heal. Rather than being stuck in misery, though, I prefer to do everything I can to carry on and live my truth, not someone else’s.

I face reality. I focus on finding solutions to my existence rather than wishing that things were different. I do not hide from my feelings; I accept my feelings. I do not beat myself up about my decisions; instead, I examine my choices and their consequences to determine whether the decision helped or hindered my progress. I remember that denial holds me back and causes more anxiety.

I forgive others and myself. I free myself from grudges and resentments. I let go of the need to punish others for their actions. I try to understand what happened without condoning the behavior.

I know that to heal completely, I must take responsibility for my actions. I resist the urge to make excuses or cast blame.

I do not shut myself off; instead, I find ways to connect with others. I calculate how much I must lose if I allow myself to withdraw out of fear of being hurt again. I take small risks to show myself that I can deal with challenges.

 I know that I deserve to love and be loved. 

I find meaning in adversity. Overcoming hardships can give me new insights and skills.

I prepare for relapses. I recognize that healing is an ongoing process. If I slip up, I catch myself and get back on course.

I manage stress. Learning to relax makes me more resilient and stable. I slow down and focus on one thing at a time.

I ask for help when I need it. I let my family and friends know when I need a hand.

Today, I speed up my emotional healing and recovery. I consciously make the decision to take control of my life. My energy levels increase. I enjoy greater happiness and peace of mind.

Self-Reflection Questions:

  1. How can I use art, journaling, or working out to help me heal?
  2. How do alcohol and drugs interfere with healing?
  3. What is the difference between accepting my feelings and wallowing in them?
  4. Create a phrase to remind yourself that you are on the road to healing.
  5. What roadblocks do I have to be aware of that could put a halt to my healing process?

With Peace and Love,

Renee

Are You in a Toxic Relationship? It is Time to Get Out

Listen to Episode 50 of the Welcome to Your Life! Midlife Made Easier Podcast: Are you in a toxic relationship? It is time to get out

Toxic relationships are not found only in personal relationships.  Toxic relationships can plague your personal life, friendships, and work.  A toxic relationship is defined as “ a toxic relationship is a relationship characterized by behaviors on the part of the toxic partner that are emotionally and,  not infrequently, physically damaging to their partner.” 

Personally, you may long to be in a relationship, but not all relationships are created equal. Some relationships cause more grief than they are worth. While being alone can be disappointing, it can be preferable to being in a toxic relationship.

Whether you are examining your professional or private life, ask yourself if the relationship enhances your life or makes it more challenging. Why?  Because you deserve the absolute best!

Toxic relationships can be challenging and hard to leave, especially in midlife.  You might be hoping that something will change, and you will not have to give up your paycheck or the person you love.  Regardless of how much pain this toxic relationship is causing you, losing your source of income or facing the world alone, even temporarily, can be frightening.

Today we will talk primarily about the signs of toxicity in your personal life, but I want to touch on how working in a toxic climate will affect you and give you steps to help you navigate a positive outcome for you.  We spend so much of our waking time working, and toxic relationships will destroy our productivity and our ability to collaborate with others.

 Signs that your workplace may be toxic:

“The Workplace Bullying Institute indicates that 19 percent of workers report they have been bullied at work. And 72 percent of the workforce are aware of it happening.”

Your workplace may be toxic if you dread going into work and you feel emotionally and physically drained by the end of the day.

Your productivity is suffering, and you are running out of sick and vacation days. 

There is a constant level of disrespect and lack of communication.

 You feel like there is a lack of support, and you are unsure if you can trust anyone, so you keep how you think to yourself.

Physical symptoms have emerged, such as sleepiness, anxiety, or stress-eating.

The atmosphere is so hostile that you feel unsafe.

Signs that you may be in a toxic personal relationship:

A consistent lack of trust. It does not matter whether you do not trust the other person, or they do not charge you. Relationships are incredibly draining when there is a pervasive lack of trust. There is never any peace.

You are forced to compromise your values regularly. When you are put in the position to live outside of the tenets you consider to be most important, your self-respect suffers.

Your partner is not supportive of your success. They say you find out who your real friends are during times of distress, but the same can be said of periods of success. It is not uncommon for friends and family to be unsupportive when you are doing well. The last thing you want is a partner that displays this type of behavior.

Dismissiveness. Is either of you dismissive toward the other? Your interests and projects should be respected. This works both ways. If you are dismissive of your partner, your relationship could be better.

Your partner is unreliable. If you cannot count on your partner, your life is more stressful than it needs to be, and your relationship is harming you.

Going somewhere else after work is more relaxing than going home. What is worse than spending a stressful day at work and deciding instead to go sit in a coffee shop alone than go home to your partner? It is nice to have a home that is an oasis from your everyday stressors.

A lack of affection. There is a lack of closeness when love wanes. Ask yourself why you no longer want to touch each other.

You resist confiding in your partner. When you have something sensitive to discuss, it would be nice to rely on your partner. If you find yourself hesitant to share, it could be a sign that your relationship is not healthy. Ideally, your partner is also your best friend.

The relationship is harmful to any children involved. Relationships should enhance the lives of the children. If your children are frightened or discouraged, these are warning signs.

You feel unsafe with your partner. No relationship is worth risking your safety. Make your health and well-being a priority in your life.

You can think of other people with whom you would rather be in a relationship. Do you find yourself wishing you could be in a relationship with a friend or coworker instead of with your current partner? Something is wrong if you imagine yourself with someone else.

I hope that you are not experiencing any of these symptoms and that your relationships are healthy, supportive, and a source of inspiration to you.

If you believe your relationships are toxic, do not be afraid to take the time to investigate further.  For both unhealthy personal and professional relationships

  • Be willing to seek professional help.
  • Start keeping a log of events, document emails, voicemails, and interactions with individuals.  This is especially important at work if you need to file a claim with the EEOC (Equal Employment Opportunity Commission).
  • Work on building or rebuilding your self-esteem and self-confidence.
  • Start activity to help you relieve the stress
  • You do not have to stay plan your exit strategy
  • Create your village, find supportive friends or coworkers who will be there to comfort and support you.

I hope that you are not experiencing any of these symptoms and that your relationships are healthy, supportive, and a source of inspiration to you. But, if they are not, it is time to step out of denial and save yourself.  A healthy relationship makes it easier to be at your best and pursue the dreams and goals that make you happy.

With Peace and Love,

Renee

You Can Create a Life That Is Balanced and Joyful

Listen to Episode 49 of Welcome to Your Life! Midlife Made Easier Podcast: You Can Create a Life That Is Balanced and Joyful

(Download The Best Self-Care Journal Heal your body and soul through self-love and mindfulness. )

Today we are talking about how to create and live a balanced life.  I know that that can be difficult to achieve considering the times we live in now.  But I hope that today’s post will give you some insight into how to accomplish this.  Now, if you can listen with a pen and piece of paper close by, that would be very helpful, as I will be asking you to answer some reflective questions to create a picture to determine how balanced your life is now.

Why am I talking about living a balanced life?  Because we spend so much time compartmentalizing the various areas of our lives, trying to ensure that everything has its own place.  Our relationships, career, money, exercise, health, but we all know that our whole lives will be affected if one area is out of whack.

Imagine having tons of money, the house, and the career you want. But not being able to enjoy it because your health is failing.  That is not an exaggeration.  I had my dream job and was at least 30 pounds overweight and trying to reverse diabetes and prehypertension.  When a part of your life is not in line with your life’s other aspects, you will begin to enjoy your lifeless and less as you struggle to get it back on track.

It is crucial to think of your life as one holistic pie and decide to put your energy into making every piece of that pie as yummy as possible.  Forgive the pie metaphor, but I am giving up sweets for Lent.

What would creating a life that is balanced and enjoyable look like? 

Your first step would be to take a real and honest look at your life in every area.  So many times, we let the fear of change stop us from making moves in our lives that we know will set us free.

Fear of change is real and can be the number one reason that we stay stuck in unhealthy and unhappy areas of our lives.  We convince ourselves that it is easier to keep the familiar mess we know rather than finding the creativity and energy to make the changes we need to be happy.

My job as your coach is to help you begin the process of imagining what your life would be like if you gathered your courage and made the necessary changes you need to make to create a happy and balanced life.  Before you ask, yes, you can have a happy and balanced life because this is not available for lucky people or blessed people. 

Now, this is where your pen and paper will come in handy?  The self-reflective questions I am about to ask you will help you to decide if you need to make changes in your life.

Are you getting things done on your own, but could use some report?

Do you want to build a healthier relationship with food?

Do you eat when you are bored, angry, sad, or stressed out?

Do you want to develop a deeper connection to yourself and others?

Do you want to be empowered to be your own health expert?

Do you want more confidence, energy, and self-acceptance?

Do you want to be held accountable to show up for yourself?

Are you looking outside of yourself for love, support, and acceptance?

I want you to take the time to answer these questions because this is the first step towards reducing your stress and healing your emotional health. 

Once you have answered the questions, I want you to use your answers to create a plan that will help you begin nurturing yourself.  This is something we can not turn over to the hands of others.  I am talking to all my romantics out there; believe me, I know how you feel.  I spent the whole day recently watching Hallmark romantic comedies and saying to myself, if my husband would just be like the characters in these movies, I would feel fantastic, and our marriage would be excellent.

Nurturing must begin with us; this is how we teach others how to treat us.

Your next step is to create priorities.  Have you ever woken up in the morning, dreading the start of your day?  You have so many things pulling at your time and energy you want to turn off the alarm and remove the cover over your head. 

Prioritizing your life will help you reduce you overwhelm and focus on the items in your day that must get done, bringing you joy.

I know that some days would be impossible to find balance, but that cannot be our daily existence.  It might be that it has been years since your life appeared to be in a healthy balance, but that does not mean that with the right action, you cannot make things right.

It is time for you to embrace and create the best life you can now!  You can decide where to put energies each day and make the life you want to live, so you do not get stuck living the life you have.

With Peace and Love,

Renee

Download The Best Self-Care Journal Heal your body and soul through self-love and mindfulness. 

My Inner Voice is Kind to Me

Photo by Andre Furtado on Pexels.com

Listen to Episode 48 Welcome to Your Life! Midlife Made Easier My Inner Voice Is Kind To Me

I speak to myself with much love and compassion. I think positive. My inner voice builds up my confidence and self-esteem.  

I choose gentle words and stick to the facts. I ask myself open-ended questions that help me view situations from a different perspective and clarify my purpose.

I practice daily. Doubts and assumptions can be stubborn. I am patient. I strengthen my new beliefs each time I think about them or say them out loud.

I repeat positive affirmations. I use empowering statements to guide my thoughts and actions.

I give myself a pep talk before challenging tasks. I take a few deep breaths and remember my achievements. I tell myself that I am strong and competent. I visualize myself delivering an effective presentation or negotiating a raise.

I comfort myself when I am under pressure. I validate my feelings and my experiences. I motivate myself to persevere and move forward.

I praise myself for making an effort. I give myself credit for trying, regardless of the outcomes. I can learn from successes and setbacks.

I let myself cry and make myself laugh. I love and accept myself for who I am. I observe my thoughts and feelings without making judgments. I look for the reasons behind them, so I can understand my reactions and make conscious decisions.

Today, I appreciate the power of my inner voice. I talk to myself like a dear friend.

Self-Reflection Questions:

  1. How can writing in a journal help me to become more aware of my self-talk?
  2. How can my self-talk help me to deal with stress?
  3. What is one positive thing I want to tell myself each morning?

Share this affirmation with someone you love! Until next week

With Peace and Love,

Renee

PS If you want to tap into some midlife love and support, join The Welcome to Your Life! Midlife Made Easier Facebook group. In this group, there are extra trainings, resources, and support from midlife women just like you. Click here to join!

I Am Worthy of My Dreams

I have big dreams, and I expect to achieve these dreams. I have earned the right to expect great things to happen in my life. If I do my part, I know I can achieve my goals and expectations.

Download and Print Your Copy of Today’s Affirmation

I deserve for good things to happen in my life. I am considerate of others and treat everyone with the respect they deserve. I am a loving friend and family member. I have the best interests of others at heart.

I do the work each day necessary to deserve success. I work hard and with focus. I am clear on what I desire and do the work required to make my dreams a reality.

I have big goals and expectations that are congruent with my abilities.

I review my goals regularly and allow myself to get excited at the prospect of achieving them. I have detailed goals and plans to make them happen.

I am deserving. My strengths and skills are sufficient to achieve my dreams. I am motivated and capable. I am worthy of my dreams.

Today, I remind myself why my dreams are appropriate for the person I am becoming each day. I have the confidence needed to be successful in the pursuit of my goals.

Self-Reflection Questions:

  1. What are my biggest goals and my plans to achieve them?
  2. Am I willing to do the work required to be successful in achieving my goals?
  3. What steps do I take each day to make my dreams a reality?

Download and Print Your Copy of Today’s Affirmation

With Peace and Love,

Renee

15 Strategies To Have Your Best Year Ever

Check out today’s video: 15 Ways To Have Your Best Year Ever Lunch & Learn
This is a new year and you have the power to make it anything you want. Check out today’s lunch and learn where I share 15 easy to implement strategies that will help you have the best year ever. Remember midlife is your time to shine!!!!!!
Take control of your life and have the best year you have ever experienced. With a little bit of effort each day, you can make that wonderful year you have dreamt of a reality. It is the small things that can make the most difference over time.

Make the most of the next 12 months with these 15 strategies:
Don’t forget to download your checklist for today’s lesson here: https://buff.ly/3nkvr6L

With Love and Peace,
Renee

I Leave the Past in the Past and Focus on the Future

Listen to Episode 47 of the Welcome to Your Life! Midlife Made Easier Podcast: I Leave the Past In The Past and Focus on the Future

I can stay focused on the present and the future. My ability to avoid dwelling on the past is increasing. I understand that thinking about the past has negative consequences.

There is nothing left for me in the past. I am glad that I learned from my past mistakes and successes. That is the best thing about the past – the lessons it provides. I take those lessons and apply them to my present. Focusing on the past, though, leads to regret.

I choose to look forward. I spend five minutes each day to imagine the future I wish to experience. I know that a compelling future is the best way to stay motivated and positive.

I work hard in the present to create my future. I can only interact with time in the present moment. I make the most of each moment and look forward to enjoying the future even more.

DOWNLOAD YOU COPY OF THIS WEEK’S AFFIRMATION HERE

I can let go of the past. Time spent on past regrets and mistakes lessens my ability to manage my life and generate success. I have more significant potential for happiness when I leave the past behind. I forgive those that have wronged me. I forgive myself for my past mistakes.

Today, I keep my attention on the present and the future. I am permanently leaving the past in my rearview mirror. I leave the past in the past and focus on the future.

Self-Reflection Questions:

  1. What is one mini goal I can focus on and accomplish this week?
  2. How can I enhance my ability to avoid focusing on the past?
  3. What are my goals for the future?
  4. What type of life do I dream of living?
  5. How will I feel when I accomplish this goal?

This Year You Will Take Action

Happy New Year my friends.  This beautiful year is just a blank slate waiting for you to put your special imprint on it.  One of my coaches sent me this, and I wanted to share it with all of you because this is the year of no excuses and no waiting for the perfect time.  The Time is Now! I changed a few things to make it more relevant to our midlife mission, but I want you to know that I believe in you, I believe in us, and together we are unstoppable. Don’t let your past trauma, failures, and unsupportive family members keep you from having the best year of your life.

Enjoy and take action

I want to talk about your IMPACT.

IN MIDLIFE Life comes down to two things:

#1: Who did you have the courage and audacity to become?

  • Were you brave?
  • Were you genuinely excellent in everything you did?
  • Did you live with authenticity?
  • Were you following your own values and truth?

#2: How many people did you help?

  • How much value did you create?
  • How many people did you profoundly impact?


The bottom line?

YOU must believe in YOU.

Because the world needs to see your mastery. The world needs you to transform lives.

And the world needs you to TAKE ACTION

…even when things are scary and uncertain.

Don’t give up on your vision and ambition.

No matter what.

GO ALL IN.

Commit to NO EXCUSES.

Because beneath every excuse is a FEAR.

But beneath every ELITE athlete, professional career woman and thought leader…

…is the strength to PERSEVERE.

  • Bravery is a muscle. 
  • Creativity is a muscle. 
  • Mastery is a muscle.


Use it or lose it.

  • So, if you want to 2x your IMPACT…
  • You need to 2x the investment in yourself. Your education. Your business.
  • When you know more, you can produce more, and you can achieve more.


STILL do not believe me.

Then start believing in YOURSELF.


Because you give yourself what you feel you deserve.

If you do not feel you deserve greatness, you will find ways to sabotage yourself.

So if you are not getting what you deserve…

Think about this:

  • Are you getting in your own way?
  • Are you struggling to be and do what you are made to do?
  • Are you spinning your wheels?


Maybe it’s time to give yourself what you TRULY deserve.

Be better.
Be amazing.
Be LEGENDARY.

Stop w-a-i-t-i-n-g for the perfect story. Or the “perfect” timing.

Other people deserve to hear your story.
Other people deserve to have your help.

You were MADE for this.

Step up to the plate. It is your time.

And I would love to help.  If you are ready to soar this year, then schedule your free Empowerment Call with me, let’s discover what is holding you back together. Problems do not solve themselves, but you have the solution.  Let’s find it together.

With Love and Peace,

Renee

Eliminating Dead Weight as 2020 Ends

When I start to work with a new client, one of the first things I like for them to identify is their support system. When you try to do something that you have never done before, you do not need to be pulled away from your focus by family and friends who do not support your vision for your life. When you change everything in your life has to change, the more you align your life with your goals the greater your chances of success. 

That is not to say that they have to agree with you completely, but they should refrain from throwing water on your dreams by reminding you of all the times you didn’t quite hit the mark in the past. Sometimes, they might think they are helpful with comments like:

  • “You can lose the weight on your own.”
  • “Are you even trying? Try harder.”
  • “Just eat less and workout more.”
  • “Shouldn’t you be thinking of retiring instead of starting a new career?”.
  • “People your age don’t run marathons.”
  • “Is the pain that bad or is it in your head.”
  • “Your time has passed; it’s time to let the younger folks have a turn.”

These are just a few of my clients’ comments, and I have heard when we confided to our closest confidants about our plans to make changes in our lives. When they recall the comments, many clients break down in tears.

Whether it is losing weight, starting a new career path, or pursuing your purpose, and maybe your new career path is your purpose. You must create a support system that supports you unconditionally, holds you accountable when you don’t believe you can do it, and loves you no matter how many times you must start over.

Anyone who does not fall in step with your plans is dead weight, and you should eliminate them immediately. You do not have to cut them out of your life entirely if you do not want too, just do not let them into your inner circle.

Make a list of three people you can count on to support your journey towards a new you.

With Love and Peace,

Renee

Download Now! The Ultimate Guide: Beating the Midlife Slump! 10 Strategies to Help You Boost Your Self Confidence, Self-Love, and Self-Care

Kamala is Calling-Will You Answer?

Listen to Episode 46 of the Welcome to Your Life! Midlife Made Easier Podcast: Kamala is Calling! Will You Answer

Like so many Americans, I found myself shouting and celebrating the election of Joe Biden as our new President-elect and Kamala Harris as our Vice President-elect. After the most intense election cycle I have ever experienced, I was glad to see it come to an end.  

As each news outlet proclaimed the dynamic duo the winner, I watched interview after interview, parents of young children and young college students extolled what this historic election meant to them.

 While I am ecstatic that my grandchildren will see someone who looks like them in the White House.  I found myself thinking about what it would mean to have a woman in mid-life become the most powerful woman in our country, in the world.  And I got even more excited. Not only did she shatter the glass ceiling, but she crushed all our excuses.

Too often in my coaching practice, I meet women in midlife who have given up on themselves and their dreams.  They genuinely believe that the life they have is all they are entitled to; that simply is not the truth.

Kamala’s election proves to us that we can continue to dream and fight for ourselves after fifty.  We still have a future.  But many of us are so committed to living in our past that we end up living our lives backward.  That must end.

I believe her election is a wake-up call for all us midlife women to reawaken to the possibility of creating the life we want.  Will you answer the call?  It is time to dust off those dreams and recalibrate them; they will be the foundation for your new future.

I must be honest with you, I had to check myself.  I have found myself crossing off goals this year and labeling them as impossible to achieve.  Mentally, I was drained and unresponsive.  But this election result has re-ignited a fire in me, and I hope it does the same for you.

The world may have written off as obsolete, what they do not realize is that we are the classic models that never go out of style. 

There is someone out there waiting for you to become the woman you were called to be; there are souls tied to our dreams; we may never meet them, but they will find us, and as our life changes, we will give them the power to change theirs.  Look at Kamala; she did what no one in this country believed was possible. Let her be your beacon until you are strong enough to become your own.

You have the power to create the life you want to live. Our families, our communities, the world, is looking to us to be the light on the hill.   I believe in you; I believe in us! It is time you stop focusing on your losses and start celebrating your wins. Kamala is calling, will you answer?

With Love and Peace,

Renee

Join the private Welcome To Your Life Midlife Made Easier Facebook group, a curated community exclusively for fun-loving midlife women. Learn from and connect with other midlife women this is your village a safe place to learn new skills, vent your concerns and celebrate your wins.  Click here to join (note: you must answer the questions to be considered).

A Special Opportunity

Hey guys, I have a special opportunity for 10 midlife women, who want to lose 10 pounds, reduce sugar cravings, and increase their energy in the next 30 days. If that sounds like you, shoot me an email at info@reneereid.net and I will send you the deets. It’s that simple. See you on the inside.

With Love and Peace,

Renee

What If You Could Wake Up Feeling Great?

Each day brings another chance to take hold of our health and to invite joy into our lives. I have found that without health it is impossible to enjoy your life. We spend so much time-fighting disease, that we forget that we can choose health and wellness. Join me for the 21-Day Sugar Detox, Reset Your Mind-Body-Spirit. I promise that not only will you lose weight and reduce sugar cravings, but you will also re-energize your life.

With Love and Peace,

Renee

Click this link to download my new e-book “Creating Goals That Get You To The Finish Line”

#midlifewomen  #wtyl #fitbabyboomer #atlantapodcast #midlifecrisis #genxwomen midlifewellness #midlifeaffirmation #midlifebeauty #fiftyplusbeauty #fortypluswomen #healthandwellness  #diabeticwomen #midlifecrisis #midliferesilience  #selfcare #selflove #midlifedetermination #menopause #hotflashes #bellyfat #inflammation #overfiftyandfit #empoweringwomen #midlifestyle #walking #cleaneating

Stop Holding Your Breath!

So many of us are holding our breaths, waiting for the next failure, disappointment, or disaster to hit. Take a deep breath and know that whatever happens, you have the strength to get through it. Be proud of your battle scars!

Image result for Love Heart Emoji

With Peace and Love,

Renee

Hi guys, my name is Renee.  I am a Certified Life and Empowerment Coach and Yoga teacher. When I stopped dieting and began to love my body, I lost 43 pounds, reversed my prediabetes, and created a life I love.  I help mid-life women lose weight without dieting by helping them to increase their self-confidence, self-love, and self-care without guilt.  My gift to you Beating the Midlife Slump! 10 Strategies to Help You Boost Your Self Confidence, Self-Love, and Self-Care

#midlifewomen  #wtyl #fitbabyboomer #atlantapodcast #midlifecrisis #genxwomen midlifewellness #midlifeaffirmation #midlifebeauty #fiftyplusbeauty #fortypluswomen #healthandwellness  #diabeticwomen #midlifecrisis #midliferesilience  #selfcare #selflove #midlifedetermination #menopause #hotflashes #bellyfat #inflammation #overfiftyandfit #empoweringwomen #midlifestyle #walking #cleaneating

Don’t Let Past Trauma Rob You of Your Dreams!

Your childhood or adulthood traumas do not have to define your whole life. It’s time to face them and take control.

With Peace and Love,

Renee

Work with me privately: Midlife Made Easier 21- Day Sugar Detox Reset Your Mind and Body Click Here to Apply: Only ten spots available. Talk Soon

#midlifewomen  #wtyl #fitbabyboomer #atlantapodcast #midlifecrisis #genxwomen midlifewellness #midlifeaffirmation #midlifebeauty #fiftyplusbeauty #fortypluswomen #healthandwellness  #diabeticwomen #midlifecrisis #midliferesilience  #selfcare #selflove #midlifedetermination #menopause #hotflashes #bellyfat #inflammation #overfiftyandfit #empoweringwomen #midlifestyle #walking #cleaneating

No One Expects You to Win!

Listen to Episode 45 of the Welcome to Your Life! Midlife Made Easier Podcast- No One Expects You to Win

Hey there!  In 90 days, 2020 will be history.  We may not have started well, but we can end it with a bang.  But I want you to consider this, no one expects you to win.  Your family and friends probably do not believe that you can really conquer your fears, lose weight, or fulfill your dreams.  You have been talking about leaving your soul-sucking job for years; they do not even listen when you complain about it now.

They do not expect you to move out of the ordinary existence you have carved out for yourself. And while it may be a lovely place to hang out, it is not where you want to spend the rest of your life.  You want to spread your wings and soar as high as you possibly can in this life.

The truth of the matter is that while your family and friends do not expect you to become extraordinary at this stage of your life, you might not think it is possible either.  I could be writing this post for myself as much as for you, but I believe that if we band together and hold each other accountable, we could achieve some big goals in the last 90 days of 2020.

But where should we start?  Start with one dream.  You do not have to conquer your entire to-do list in 90 days; start with just one goal. In other words, start small.  Pick one item off your list and go all in until it is completed, and then if you have time, choose another one. Surround yourself with other midlife women who will love you, support you, and give you a little kick in the bottom when you stall. (join our free midlife made easier group)

You might be a little timid to do something new; maybe you tried to move the needle towards greatness before and failed.  So, what!  Failure is learning.  My 90-day goal is to write and publish the three tiny books I started and stopped writing at the beginning of the year.  Literally, I got almost to the end of each one and just let everything else interfere with my writing time, including my own excuses.  I want to give birth to these half-completed manuscripts and share their contents with the world.

You may think that it is impossible to do anything significant in just 90 days.  Maybe you believe that you do not have the time between your job, community work, and the people you still have to care for, don’t get me started on caretaking; we are, after all, the caregiver generation.  When I think about it, this is the first time in my life when I was not taking care of someone besides myself. Do not get me wrong, I am not suggesting that your family and friends are hoping you fail, but if you change, that could upset their worlds.  And believe me, they do not want that to happen.

We are midlife women, most of the world has written us off, our contributions from here on out is to babysit the grandkids, go to church, or chase after our grown children and try to find out what is happening in their lives. Still, we were made for more than to live vicariously through our children and grandchildren, our life experience,  the sacrifices we’ve made, and the hard-fought knowledge we have accumulated demands that we share our genius with the world. 

No one in your current circle may expect you to become the extraordinary superstar you were created to be, but I believe in you. I believe in us.  Now! Get to it.

In 90 days, you could:

  • Lose 12 pounds (just one pound per week)
  • Find a new career
  • Increase your savings account balance
  • Write a book
  • Get rid of the clutter and reorganize your home
  • Read three novels (just one per month)
  • Start a blog or a podcast (post once a week, that is 12 entries by 12.31)
  • Buy a new car
  • Take care of the dental work you have been putting off

These may not seem like life-altering activities, but you would be surprised at what one small shift in your “normal” routine can lead to; if you want some accountability, let us know in the comments what you are going to tackle in the last 90 days of 2020. We will be right there cheering you on.

With Peace and Love,

Renee

Hi guys, my name is Renee.  I am a Certified Life and Empowerment Coach and Yoga teacher. When I stopped dieting and began to love my body, I lost 43 pounds, reversed my prediabetes, and created a life I love.  I help mid-life women lose weight without dieting by helping them to increase their self-confidence, self-love, and self-care without guilt.  My gift to you Beating the Midlife Slump! 10 Strategies to Help You Boost Your Self Confidence, Self-Love, and Self-Care

 

#midlifewomen  #wtyl #fitbabyboomer #atlantapodcast #midlifecrisis #genxwomen midlifewellness #midlifeaffirmation #midlifebeauty #fiftyplusbeauty #fortypluswomen #healthandwellness  #diabeticwomen #midlifecrisis #midliferesilience  #selfcare #selflove #midlifedetermination #menopause #hotflashes #bellyfat #inflammation #overfiftyandfit #empoweringwomen #midlifestyle #mindset

Healthcare Mistake #3 Eating Like a 25-Year-Old

Monitor your eating habits. Stop eating like a 25-year-old. While the milkshakes, burgers, and fries may not have wreaked havoc on our wellness journey when we were younger, a fast-food diet can derail the progress we have made.  As we get older, our metabolism changes and our bodies no longer burn calories as quickly as it did when we were younger.  Stop eating late at night. Eating and drinking late at night could cause reflux, weight gain, and interfere with our ability to get a good night’s sleep.

Once you hit 40, it may be a good idea to meet with a nutritionist or health coach to assist you with mapping out a new way of eating that allows you to lose weight, energize your day, and stave off disease.  Also, watch your snacks. “Eating snacks between meals can help to keep your appetite at bay and your energy up throughout the day. The key to snacking is to choose items that will boost your health rather than cause harm.”    To boost your metabolism, get plenty of sleep, move your body, and add weight training to your workout plan.  Changing your eating habits can be difficult, but you can do it. 

With Peace and Love,

Renee

Work with me!  Apply Here This program is for midlife women between the ages of 45-60 whose lives have been frozen due to trauma, guilt, emotional neglect, disappointments, unforgiveness, or harsh breakups.  Each week we will dive into a lesson from my upcoming course, A Mindful and Graceful Life. If you are looking to live a mindful and graceful life if you feel that it’s time to lose weight naturally, reduce your stress, increase your joy, and begin the journey of making peace with your mind and body this is the program for you. This individual program is by invitation only,  if you are ready to up-level your life and heal, Apply here. 

Download Now!  Beating the Midlife Slump! 10 Strategies to Help You Boost Your Self Confidence, Self-Love, and Self-Care

#midlifewomen  #wtyl #fitbabyboomer #atlantapodcast #midlifecrisis #genxwomen midlifewellness #midlifeaffirmation #midlifebeauty #fiftyplusbeauty #fortypluswomen #healthandwellness  #diabeticwomen #midlifecrisis #midliferesilience  #selfcare #selflove #midlifedetermination #menopause #hotflashes #bellyfat #inflammation #overfiftyandfit #empoweringwomen #midlifestyle

Embrace Imperfection and Enjoy Your Life

Listen to Episode 44 Welcome To Your Life! Midlife Made Easier Podcast -Embrace Imperfection and Enjoy Your Life

Midlife can be hard on our self-confidence and self-esteem.  If you have any contact with social media, you will have noticed how everyone is striving to be perfect. Suddenly you cannot post a selfie without at least one filter or go out for dinner without showing your curated plate of food. Even your dog must look perfect.

It is easy to get stuck in comparison mode, and if we are not careful, we will lose our joy.

What if you just decided to take a step away from all the competition? Leave all that clamoring for likes and hearts to others? What if you chose merely to enjoy your life without sharing it with the world?  Here are four ways to reclaim your life and reenergize your joy.  

  • Stop judging

You can decide right now to stop analyzing other people, looking for what is wrong with their face or their body or their life choices. Refocus your mindset so that you stop seeing differences as flaws, but as ways that make each of us unique.

Let go of the urge to criticize others, and you will notice that your negative self-talk will begin to diminish.

  • Accept your imperfection

Wanting to be the best version of you is not the same as being a perfectionist. A perfectionist is never happy with who they are, how they look, or how they are doing.  There was a time when I would not post a video unless I was in full make-up.  I can laugh now, but it seriously hampered how I was able to connect with you guys.  I realize now that being my best means I work hard, and I do not give up.  Stop blaming yourself when things are not perfect, learn from the setbacks and failures and recalibrate, and never take failure personally.

  • Relax and enjoy the process

Do you ponder every detail of your plan until you get nothing done?   My coach is always telling me that “done is better than perfect”.  Trying to wait to do something fantastic in your life until everything is perfect will only put your life and dreams on hold.   When you embrace imperfection as a natural part of life, it frees you up to enjoy the ride.

Obstacles become challenges that make life more enjoyable. You can slow down and notice all the good things there are in your life.

  • Adopt imperfection as a way of life

Once you make peace with imperfection, you can be a lot more objective about your life. Your perspective changes, and what once seemed overwhelmingly important suddenly does not matter so much. All our experiences become just another aspect of a life lived richly. These experiences, no matter how jacked up, will help you to create the person who is continually evolving.

Imperfection stops being something to avoid at all costs. Think about it like this: perfection implies stasis, something you achieve and have to tend. It is fragile and vulnerable. It puts an end to growth. And then what? You do not want to stop learning and growing and developing, do you? Embracing imperfection means there is always an opportunity to learn and grow and become a better person.

Say it with me, from today forward I will enjoy my imperfect self.

With love and peace,

Renee

Start enjoying your life: Download Now!  Beating the Midlife Slump! 10 Strategies to Help You Boost Your Self Confidence, Self-Love, and Self-Care

Let me help you lose your next eight pounds.   Join me for the next cohort of the Couch to 5K Walking and Clean Eating Challenge Training starts on October 4th -Race Day is October 31st each participant in the 5K program will receive a beautiful medal and bragging rights. Check out the Entire Program Here! See you at the starting line.

#midlifewomen  #wtyl #fitbabyboomer #atlantapodcast #midlifecrisis #genxwomen midlifewellness #midlifeaffirmation #midlifebeauty #fiftyplusbeauty #fortypluswomen #healthandwellness  #diabeticwomen #midlifecrisis #midliferesilience  #selfcare #selflove #midlifedetermination #menopause #hotflashes #bellyfat #inflammation #overfiftyandfit #empoweringwomen #midlifestyle

Health Mistake #2 Ignoring Your Heart Health

“Most women between the ages of 40 and 60 have at least one risk factor for heart disease. And, heart disease is still the leading cause of death for women in the United States strokes are number four. You can protect yourself by getting regular check-ups, incorporating daily physical activity (at least 150 minutes per week), including two weight training activities, and of course eating a healthy diet.

Your meals should center around healthy grains, fruits and vegetables, and lean proteins. Watch your weight and manage your blood sugar. I lost my grandmother, father, and younger brother to heart disease. Take care of your heart, your family will thank-you!

With Peace and Love,

Renee

Let me help you lose your next eight Join me for the next cohort of the Couch to 5K Walking and Clean Eating Challenge Training starts on October 4th -Race Day is October 31st each participant in the 5K program will receive a beautiful medal and bragging rights. Check out the Entire Program Here! See you at the starting line.



Hi guys, my name is Renee.  When I stopped dieting and began to love my body, I lost 43 pounds, reversed my prediabetes, and created a life I love.  I help mid-life women lose weight without dieting by helping them to increase their self-confidence, self-love, and self-care without guilt.  My gift to you Beating the Midlife Slump! 10 Strategies to Help You Boost Your Self Confidence, Self-Love, and Self-Care

#midlifewomen  #wtyl #fitbabyboomer #atlantapodcast #midlifecrisis #genxwomen midlifewellness #midlifeaffirmation #midlifebeauty #fiftyplusbeauty #fortypluswomen #healthandwellness  #diabeticwomen #midlifecrisis #midliferesilience  #selfcare #selflove #midlifedetermination #menopause #hotflashes #bellyfat #inflammation #overfiftyandfit #empoweringwomen #midlifestyle

Health Mistake #1 Not Having a Primary Care Physician

If you a midlife woman you cannot get by with just having an OB/GYN on your medical team. Having just an OB/GYN during our childbearing years might have been okay, but as we age and our bodies began to shift and break down, so we need someone on our team who will be able to provide preventative care. “Patients who have and keep a primary care physician also have a lower mortality rate than patients who do without a primary care provider or who change doctors, according to a 2018 study published in the British Medical Journal.”

Your primary care physician can help with chronic illnesses, cancer and illness prevention.

Check with your insurance company if you need a referral. Do you have a primary care physician you love? Tell us why!

With Peace and Love,

Renee

Let me help you lose your next eight Join me for the next cohort of the Couch to 5K Walking and Clean Eating Challenge Training starts on October 4th -Race Day is October 31st each participant in the 5K program will receive a beautiful medal and bragging rights. Check out the Entire Program Here! See you at the starting line.

Hi guys, my name is Renee.  When I stopped dieting and began to love my body, I lost 43 pounds, reversed my prediabetes and created a life I love.  I help mid-life women lose weight without dieting by helping them to increase their self-confidence, self-love, and self-care without guilt.  My gift to you Beating the Midlife Slump! 10 Strategies to Help You Boost Your Self Confidence, Self-Love, and Self-Care


#midlifewomen  #wtyl #fitbabyboomer #atlantapodcast #midlifecrisis #genxwomen midlifewellness #midlifeaffirmation #midlifebeauty #fiftyplusbeauty #fortypluswomen #healthandwellness  #diabeticwomen #midlifecrisis #midliferesilience  #selfcare #selflove #midlifedetermination #menopause #hotflashes #bellyfat #inflammation #overfiftyandfit #empoweringwomen #midlifestyle

Three Ways to Fight Age Discrimination in the Workplace

Listen to WTYL Podcast Episode 43 Three Ways to Fight Age Discrimination in the Workplace

While its been 50 years since Congress passed the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, unfortunately, ageism is one of the ism’s that is still sociably acceptable in the United States.  Age discrimination is real. Two out of three workers between ages 45 and 74 say they have seen or experienced age discrimination at work, and job seekers over age 35 cite it as a top obstacle to getting hired. And if you happen to work in the high-tech or entertainment industries, your chances of experiencing age discrimination are even higher.”

Older workers have been called names at work like old school, geezer, or grandpa, but many do not report these offenses for fear of rocking the boat and missing out on a promotion. But there are tools you can use to protect yourself against this type of discrimination. Your first step is to make sure that you are doing something you still enjoy, this is part of your mindful self-care strategy.

  1. Keep abreast of new technological advances, if you need to, take a class at the local community college or library.  Technology is here to stay, and we, as Midlifers, must be prepared to show that we understand it and can apply in our current or future positions.
  2. Create your own gig, use your gifts and talents to finally start the business you have dreamt of, and become your own boss.  Even if you are not ready to quit your job, having another stream of income will give you financial security and possibly replace your full-time income.
  3. Get fit, we would like to think that our appearance does not matter, but the truth is that we are continuously judged by the way we look. Increase your self-care, workout, eat healthy food, and spend some quiet time mindfully thinking about your goals and dreams.  Getting fit and increasing your self-care will boost your confidence and improve your attitude.

You might face an uphill battle when it comes to fighting age discrimination in your workplace. If you feel that you have been unjustly discriminated against, document the offense, and reach out to your HR department.  If your HR department is not able to handle the matter to your satisfaction, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) is your next line of defense against age discrimination. This is a federal law that says an employer cannot fire, refuse to hire, or treat you differently than other employees because of your age. 

The world may be changing, and others may forget, but you must always know your value!

With Peace and Love,

Renee

Download Now!  Beating the Midlife Slump! 10 Strategies to Help You Boost Your Self Confidence, Self-Love, and Self-Care

Join the private Welcome To Your Life Midlife Made Easier Facebook group, a curated community exclusively for fun-loving midlife. Learn from and connect with other midlife women this is your village a safe place to vent your concerns and celebrate your wins.  Click here to join (note: you must answer the questions to be considered).

Work with me! Let me help you lose your next 8 pounds. I am looking for women over 40 who are looking, lose weight naturally, reduce their stress, increase their joy, and begin the journey of making peace with their bodies. If this is you, sign up here.  Sign-up before 9.20.20 and receive 50% off coaching package. No coupon necessary.       

#midlifewomen  #wtyl #fitbabyboomer #atlantapodcast #midlifecrisis #genxwomen midlifewellness #midlifeaffirmation #midlifebeauty #fiftyplusbeauty #fortypluswomen #healthandwellness  #diabeticwomen #midlifecrisis #midliferesilience  #selfcare #selflove #midlifedetermination #menopause #hotflashes #bellyfat #inflammation #overfiftyandfit #empoweringwomen #midlifestyle

Stop Accepting Your Weight Gain and Fight Back!

Listen to Episode 42 WTYL Podcast Stop Accepting Your weight Gain and Fight Back!

Midlife can be an exciting time, but it can also bring about some changes to our bodies, that can be hard to accept—one of those being weight gain.  The problem occurs not when we gain the weight, but, when we begin to accept that this is just the way things must be. 

 As we get older, weight gain is a surety for most women.  As we go through menopause, the loss of muscle and hormonal changes can result in a decrease in energy expenditures.    “If you eat the same things and exercise the same amount as you did in your thirties, you could potentially still gain weight,” said Soltes. “Women don’t want to hear that, but it is biology.”

To combat weight gain, we must do two things. Exercise and watch what we eat.  The American Heart Association and the CDC suggest that 150 minutes of moderate exercise can work wonders to help you lose weight, build muscle, and increase heart health.  If working out for 30 minutes, all at once makes you cringe.  Feel free to split it up into 15-minute increments.

The second thing you must tackle is the way you eat.  No one was more surprised than I to realize that I could not eat the way I use to when I 35.  I had five babies, three of them are only two years apart.  I ate whatever I wanted, and after the babies came, started back to running, and the weight literally fell off.  

All of that changed when menopause hit, suddenly my belly and knee fat exploded, and I went from a size 10 to an 18 in a matter of months. 

 A study published in the American Journal of Health Promotion followed nearly 200 middle-aged women for three years, tracking eating patterns, overall health, and lifestyle. The researchers found women who did not change their eating habits as they aged were 138 percent more likely to put on about six pounds or more during midlife.

Eating healthy does not have to be overwhelming, watch your portions, and eat more fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins.  Which means cutting back on caramel latte’s, French fries, and chocolate milkshakes.   

It is estimated that about 60% of American women are overweight, and 1/3 of these women are obese.  Carrying that extra weight could mean join pain, strokes, diabetes, or heart disease, all of which could be detrimental to the lifestyles we want to lead.

Yes, our bodies change as we get older, but we do not have to become complacent and accept those changes, we can fight back with good nutrition and exercise. You are worth it.

Which one do you think it would be easier to start today, exercising for 30 minutes or eating healthier meals? Let us know in the comments.

With Love and Peace,

Renee

Download Now!  Beating the Midlife Slump! 10 Strategies to Help You Boost Your Self Confidence, Self-Love, and Self-Care

Whenever you are ready, here are two ways I can help you create the future you’ve always wanted:

Join the private Welcome To Your Life Midlife Made Easier Facebook group, a curated community exclusively for fun-loving midlife. Learn from and connect with other midlife women this is your village a safe place to vent your concerns and celebrate your wins.  Click here to join (note: you must answer the questions to be considered).

Do Not Be Afraid to Feel Your Feelings

WTYL Episode 39 Welcome To Your Life! Midlife Made Easier Podcast

The world is in chaos it is scary and a bit overwhelming. Before we get started, let us take a collective moment to breathe.  Maybe like me, you have been holding your breath as every one of your body’s senses has been bombarded by emotions too quick to process.

So, I invite you, no, I implore you, find a comfortable seat, relax your shoulders, and plant your feet firmly on the floor. Close your eyes.  Place your left hand on your belly, and your right hand on your heart.  Take a deep breath through your nose, feeling the rise and fall of your belly and chest.  Do this three times.  Now, sit for a moment and just feel the awareness of stillness.

Even when you were not physically moving over the last 12 weeks, your mind has been in constant motion.  I would bet you a butter pecan iced coffee that you are emotionally, financially, and spiritually exhausted. 

Having been hit simultaneously with a global pandemic which has killed over 120,000 people in the United States alone, left 40 million Americans unemployed, plural police shootings which have sparked nationwide protests. Fueled by 400 years of systemic racism, brutal injustice, and downright disrespect of the human rights of black and brown folks in this country.

As women of a certain age, we have become very adept at hiding our feelings; after all, it would be selfish of us to spend time dealing with our own emotions, when we need to be the glue that holds our world together.  So, we pack them away in a little box with the promise that we will unpack them later.  Well, my friend later is now.

Some of us were never taught the importance of examining how we feel, that was a luxury for the rich and famous.  I mean really, “was this not an issue of class in that the higher socioeconomic classes could spend their time contemplating their sadness while the rest of us regular folks had to get to work? How possible was it, really, for the average person, to be with or in their sadness, “sitting still” when things needed to get done? After all, didn’t we all need to get out the door and earn a living?”   Our parents showed us they loved us by providing for us, as a single mom my mother rarely had time to ask us how we felt or really examine how she was feeling, she was too busy trying to put food on the table.  Unfortunately, the cycle continued with me. 

Feeling your feelings is not an easy task, believe me, I know.  I am the queen of holding things in and telling myself that I will deal with it some other time.  When things are not as hectic, when my life is in order, or when I have more time.   I placated myself bingeing on Netflix, alcohol, food, and shopping.  Until being unemployed meant that I had to let go of these vices and deal with my feelings.

When you are focused on numbing your feelings rather than processing them and using healthy coping strategies, you prevent yourself from living a full and meaningful life. Hurt, frustration, pain, sadness, and anger are all-natural and healthy parts of the human experience. When we try to suppress these emotions, we are unable to thrive.”

At the end of a recent yoga class, one of my students exhaling loudly said, “I do not believe that I have taken a real breath all day.”  Your feelings help you decide whether you are in alignment with your wants and needs.  The scary part about taking that deep breathe feeling your emotions and identifying how they show up in your body is that you must submit to being vulnerable.  

Being vulnerable can provide us with the key we need to live a full life. If we’re brave, it will allow us to finally let our guard down and open ourselves up to the sadness, disbelief, and frustration we may be holding on too, which means “more energy and attention we have to devote to our functioning life.”  

Does holding your feelings in lead to emotional eating, shutting yourself off from family or friends, sadness, headaches, gut issues, overspending, or yelling at co-workers?

Your assignment this week is to sit in a quiet place, use the breathing exercise we did at the beginning to anchor your mind.  This process will be as long or as short as you would like it to be, it must be done. At the end of your day, take out a blank piece of paper, set the timer for ten minutes, and just write how you are feeling. My free writing led to me address some things that I had pushed down but that needed to be addressed immediately, such as the daily emotional eating I had been doing to ease my frustrations.  Once you complete the activity, shoot me an email at info@reneereid.net and let me know how this exercise worked or did not work for you.

You can conquer anything if you acknowledge its existence.  The more we try to hide our feelings or put off dealing with them until some arbitrary future date, the more we will use unhealthy coping skills to bottle up our emotions.  It is time to feel again.

With Peace and Love,

Renee

My gift to you, Beating the Midlife Slump! 10 Strategies to Help You Boost Your Self Confidence, Self-Love, and Self-Care

Whenever you are ready, here are two ways I can help you create the future you’ve always wanted:

  1. Join the private Welcome to Your Life Midlife Made Easier Facebook group, a curated community exclusively for fun-loving midlife. Learn from and connect with other midlife women; this is your village, a safe place to vent your concerns and celebrate your wins.  Click here to join (note: you must answer the questions to be considered).

.

  1. Work with me privately. I am looking for 10 women over 50 who are looking, to lose weight naturally, reduce their stress, and increase their joy. If this is you, please fill out the form below. All eligible applications will be contacted by phone or email.  Click here to apply! Your first call is free!

#midlifewomen  #wtyl #fitbabyboomer #atlantapodcast #midlifecrisis #genxwomen midlifewellness #midlifeaffirmation #midlifebeauty #fiftyplusbeauty #fortypluswomen #healthandwellness  #diabeticwomen #midlifecrisis #midliferesilience  #selfcare #selflove #midlifedetermination #menopause #hotflashes #bellyfat #inflammation #overfiftyandfit #empoweringwomen #midlifestyle

How to Create the New Life You Have Always Wanted

I get it, this was going to be your year.  2020 was the year you were going to lose weight, get a new job, disconnect from distracting or destructive relationships.  Find your soul mate, really take hold of your self-care, and make it a regular thing. Maybe, you were well on your way to making this happen, and then the world fell apart, and you with it.  I am here to tell you and myself that it is not too late to make your new life happen.  You can still make significant changes to your mind, body, and spirit. Guess what! I have a plan to help us do it.

This plan is going to require us to take some baby steps every day because real change does not happen in a day; it occurs when we make small shifts towards what we want.  Make sure that you hit the follow button so that you do not miss a post because, over the next couple of weeks, I am going to share with you 30 easy to implement life-changing tools and tips that will help you to transform your life.  Real self-care is more than just getting a manicure or a massage. It is the culmination of everything you do for yourself physically, spiritually, emotionally, mentally, and financially. 

Some of these tips may sound unnecessary, but hey do them anyway, remember it is the culmination of our efforts that creates real change.

So, let us start. Today, I want you to take out that massive goal list that you prepared at the beginning of the year, focus on one area, and create three smaller goals that will help you to complete the task.  For example, if you want to work out every day instead of focusing on an hour’s workout, try 20 minutes. “Every time you set and achieve a goal, your confidence and sense of competence increases.”  If you have been struggling to get your two-hour writing session done, then opt for 15 minutes a day, in a week you will have written 105 minutes that’s a blog, book chapter, short story, or podcast episode. 

Setting smaller goals will reduce overwhelm and keep your life balanced. So, what do you say what area of your life will you focus on with your three tiny goals? I would love to hear about your success.

With Peace and Love,

Renee

Are tired of banging your head against the wall and you need help to figure out your next steps.  Schedule your Soul Transformational call with me, it is completely free, and during our time together we will figure out what barriers are keeping you from the life you want. 

Self-Care is Your Superpower

Self-care and self-love are so intertwined that, to me, they are the same. It’s hard to love yourself when you are not taking care of yourself.  I know that we must take care of others, but real self-care is a conscious desire to take care of our own physical and emotional needs.  We are about to start a new month.  This would be an excellent time for you to set your intention and start or restart your self-care plan.  Self-care is your superpower; without it, we are only half showing up for the people and things we love.

Your self-care can show up in many ways, journaling, meditation, exercising regularly, scheduling your medical appointments. The point is to ensure that your physical and mental well-being is at the top of your crowded “to do” list. When you do this, you can genuinely help others with an open heart. Otherwise, resentment will rise, and you will feel guilty for the genuine feelings emanating from your spirit. Because, self-care is your superpower!

So, take some time today and make a list of all the things you need to feel happy and whole. To have peace and live courageously and connected to the spaces you inhabit. You deserve it-give yourself permission to have it.

We start May 10th are you in!   Let me help you lose your next 10 pounds join the 5k Walking and Clean Eating program get healthy, lose weight, and increase your energy.  Everyone who signs up has the chance to earn a medal during our 5K virtual  walk/run,  and you can bring a friend for free that’s right your registration comes with a free guest pass.

 $5 of your registration will be donated to the Atlanta Mission to help them provide safe housing and meals for homeless mothers and their children:  SIGN UP YOU’RE YOUR MEDAL IS WAITING:        

#diabetes #diabeticlife #diabeteprevention #type2diabetes #diabetescommunity #prediabetes #diabetesawareness #diabetesblog #diabetesprevention #diabeticwoman #chronicillness  #healthandwellness #inflammation #health #stroke #heartdisease #healthlifestyle #naturalweightloss #bloodsugar #midlifediabetes #healthcare #diabetescoach

Is Your Cell Phone Disturbing Your Sleep?

We cannot live without them, right?  I am talking about your cell phone.  Some of us have even taken to sleeping with our phones.  I am guilty of that, but that could be the worst thing you could do if you want to get a good restful night’s sleep.  Not only does the urge to keep rechecking your social media accounts interrupt your sleep patterns.

😴📱Scientists are just beginning to dig into all the effects cell phone use has on our health … including obesity, heart disease, brain changes, depression, and more. But one thing they do know is that the blue light that comes from screens can severely impact the quality and quantity of our sleep!  If you still have children at home, now is the time to get them in the habit of putting their phones away before going to bed.  If the urge is too high to see who liked, shared, or commented on your last post, I am raising my hand, then recharging them in another room is a great way to break the habit.

If you want to get a great night’s sleep.  And who doesn’t, 😳📵😴try to put your phone (and tablets and TVs!) away for at least an hour before you go to bed, so your brain gets a break from the blue light, which can make you want to stay awake!

With Peace and Love,

Renee

Let’s connect on the gram  https://www.instagram.com/iamreneereid/

Has your life stalled?  Download the Ultimate Midlife Guide: 

Beating The Midlife Slump-10 Strategies To Help You Boost Self-Confidence, Self-Love, and Self-Care

The latest episode of Welcome To Your Life Midlife Made Easier Podcast: This podcast is for midlife women who are juggling midlife, wellness, relationship, and work/life balance.  Get the latest tips, tools, and interviews from midlife women just like you.

#midlifewomen  #wtyl #fitbabyboomer #atlantapodcast #midlifecrisis #genxwomen midlifewellness #midlifeaffirmation #midlifebeauty #fiftyplusbeauty #fortypluswomen #healthandwellness  #diabeticwomen #midlifecrisis #midliferesilience  #selfcare #selflove #midlifedetermination #menopause #hotflashes #bellyfat #inflammation #overfiftyandfit #empoweringwomen #midlifestyle

What Is The Best Picture You’ve Taken All Week?

The world has gotten so gloomy. It’s important that we make a concerted effort to remember the good things. Because, while we are in the midst of death and dying, life is still going on. 📷🌆👶🏻What’s the best picture you’ve taken this week? Share it in the comments!

No Need For Masks Or Social Distancing!

I took this photo on one of my morning walks. It was cold! But, it was good to get outside away from the news coverage and smell the fresh air and see that nature is still thriving.

With Peace and Love,

Renee

Let’s Connect ON the Gram

Has your life stalled?  Download the Ultimate Midlife Guide: 

Beating The Midlife Slump-10 Strategies To Help You Boost Self-Confidence, Self-Love, and Self-Care

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The Anniversary of Loss: Three Ways to Get Through the Day

    If you have made it to midlife, you know what it means to lose someone you love.  April 17th would have been my younger brother’s 59th birthday.  Every year, on that day, I am reminded that there is a very noticeable gap between my youngest brother and myself.  David died from the same disease that took our dad, heart disease.  Of course, he was not the first death I’d experienced.  I have buried both of my parents, two grandmothers, and a beloved aunt.  But this is different. David and I were born 11 months apart.  I told people we were twins because between April and June, our respective birth months, we were the same age. 

     David was the balance between my youngest brother and me, he was calm, funny, a gifted artist who loved comic books, sci-fi, and he was the first tech nerd I ever knew.  As the pandemic rages around us, my heart goes out to the families who will celebrate their own anniversaries of loss next year.   Let me share with you three ways that I have found to get through the day.

  1. Cry:  This is not the day to stay in control of your emotions; if you feel like crying, let the waterworks go.  If possible, don’t spend the whole day crying that can be so draining.   Deal with your emotions unapologetically.
  2. Do something in remembrance:  My brother and I shared a love of all things sci-fi.  This year I watched the new Picard series in his honor.  You will never forget the person you lost, you can “empower yourself by proactively anticipating the anniversary and incorporating his or her memory into your plans.”
  3. Connect with others, the first couple of years after David passed away, I admit I shut myself off, worked long hours, or busied myself with my kids.  This year, I shared with them how I was feeling, told stories about when we were growing up, and how I would fight anyone who tried to bully him. Sharing with them helped me to remember David and gave them some insight on our childhood, a topic they tell me I don’t share enough.  My daughter-in-law dropped off a nice bottle of wine, and chocolates her kindness gave me a new memory to add to this anniversary.  On your anniversary, connect with others, share stories and memories.  Start a new tradition to honor your loved one and celebrate their contribution to you and to the world.

     Grief is one of those emotions that never really goes away, a smell, a song, a photo can bring back all the raw feelings of loss.  Take the time to care for yourself and tap into your inner strength.  Take a long walk, write your thoughts in a journal, take a yoga class, or talk to a therapist or coach, don’t suffer in silence.  That is the one thing I am sure your loved one would not want you to do. 

With Love and Peace,

Renee

Has your life stalled?  Download the Ultimate Midlife Guide: 

Beating The Midlife Slump-10 Strategies To Help You Boost Self-Confidence, Self-Love, and Self-Care

#grief #midlife #midlifecrisis #midlifeaffirmation #midlifewellness #midlifeselflove #midlifepower

What Could I Do If I Wasn’t Afraid?

“Love Yourself, Dream Bigger” Teresa Collins

     I am not going to lie to you, midlife can be a scary phase of life.  Questions arise like, who is going to take care of me when I cannot take care of myself.  What if I don’t have enough money to live comfortably? I want to change careers but everyone I talk too tell me I am too old.  And, if these questions, are not enough to handle, what do we tell ourselves when we look at the dreams, we’ve left undone because we were just too afraid to take the first step.   

     If we have learned nothing else from the pandemic it is that we cannot afford to wait until tomorrow to live.  Live Now! Walk the marathon, write the book, start the business, cut people out of your life that no longer support you, acknowledge your mental health issues and get some help. Learn to motivate yourself and follow your own intuition, you got this!

With Peace and Love,

Renee

Have your weight loss goals stalled?  Download The Ultimate Midlife Guide:  Beating The Midlife Slump-10 Strategies To Help You Boost Self-Confidence, Self-Love, and Self-Care

#midlifewomen  #wtyl #fitbabyboomer #atlantapodcast #midlifecrisis #genxwomen midlifewellness #midlifeaffirmation #midlifebeauty #fiftyplusbeauty #fortypluswomen #healthandwellness  #diabeticwomen #midlifecrisis #midliferesilience  #selfcare #selflove #midlifedetermination #menopause #hotflashes #bellyfat #inflammation #overfiftyandfit #empoweringwomen #midlifestyle

Midlifers Tell the Truth: Are You Lonely?

Illustrated by Brianna Gilmartin, Verywell

     It always fascinates me how in 2020, we can be so digitally connected and yet feel so alone.  Loneliness can be a part of midlife for many reasons, divorce, death of a spouse, or an empty nest.  A Psychology Today article contends that loneliness does not depend on your social circle; more than 60% of married people admitted to feeling lonely. In the United States,40% of midlife folks are affected by loneliness, and this could lead to some devastating health outcomes.

     But before we get started, let’s define the difference between loneliness and isolation since many of us use these terms interchangeably.  Isolation ensues when we have very little or no contact with other people, this can happen due to a mental health issue or as a health precaution to fight the spread of COVID-19 which is what many of us are experiencing now.   Loneliness, on the other hand, is an emotional state it can be caused by isolation but can also be due to other things such as the loss of a good friend or moving to a new city.

Health risks associated with loneliness can include higher stress levels, antisocial behavior, increased alcohol or drug consumption, and depression. Studies show that lonely adults are less likely to exercise and consume diets high in fat and calories.

Image: tonyrobbins.com

If you feel lonely, you are not alone. In 2010 AARP commissioned a study that classified loneliness by age; the results were astounding.  Using the UCLA Loneliness Scale, they measured the percent of lonely adults by age group:

  • Ages 40-49 – 43%
  • Ages 50-59 – 41%
  • Ages 60-69 – 32%
  • Ages 70+ – 25%

How can you protect yourself from the devastating effects of loneliness?

  • Nurture existing relationships: this step helped me to combat my loneliness, I make a point each day to contact a family member or friend.  And since we are practicing social distancing due to the virus, I reach out to work colleagues a couple of times each week to stay connected. 
  • Find a hobby: this one was a little bit harder because the things I enjoy don’t necessarily require company, but it has been a real joy cycling with my friend and organizing family walks.   You could start a bowling league or book club and invite family and friends.  Or, do something entirely out of your comfort zone like ballroom dancing and make some new friends.
  • Volunteer:  One of the best ways to get your mind off yourself is to give back to your community.  Find a place to donate your time and gift that organization with your gifts and talents.  Time spent volunteering will put you into social situations that will help you to meet new people in a safe environment.

If your loneliness persists or turns into isolation, don’t be afraid to seek help, many organizations such as Better Help offer online therapeutic services.  As with any service, do your due diligence and research before you commit.  Also, check out the Coalition to End Isolation and Loneliness; this is a non-profit organization that works to assist individuals with local and national resources to end loneliness.   

     It is a myth that the older you get, the lonelier you will become, yes, your life will change, kids grow up and move out, you might get divorced, or your spouse might pass away, maybe your friend of 25 years will move to another state.  I have found that one of the greatest gifts you can give yourself is to be flexible and to live your life with a curious mind.

With Love and Peace,

Renee

Need some help getting your groove back, download The Ultimate Midlife GuideBeating The Midlife Slump-10 Strategies To Help You Boost Your Self-Confidence, Self-Love, and Self-Care

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Why Am I So Unproductive?

You probably had a list of items you were going to accomplished while being quarantined at home.  I know I did, my cleaning and organizing alone were going to take me through the 30- day shelter at home order our Governor had put into effect.  But I spent the first week with the rest of America lying on the sofa glued to the newsfeed and its unsettling statistics. If that is where you are right now, it is okay. 

While your family and friends are sewing protective masks, planning summer gardens, and hosting fundraisers for the essential workers that keep us fed, protected, and cared for, which are all excellent activities to be involved in right now.   You and I need to take some time to show ourselves some compassion.  The Coronavirus has created an unprecedented time in all our lives.  We need to allow ourselves time to grieve the comforting regularity of our normal routines and for the many families who have lost loved ones to COVID-19.

If you would like to get some things done while you’re in isolation, let me share with you how I slowly peeled myself off the sofa.

  1. Break up your large goals into smaller ones. Take your “to do” list and select three items you would like to complete.  Do this each day until the list is complete.  Don’t add any new items to the list until you have completed the current one.
  2. Use the Pomodoro method-this method made it possible for me to blog and complete my podcast.  Even without the virus looming, I have a tough time staying focused.  The technique is simple but powerful.  To begin, “Make a small oath to yourself: I will spend 25 minutes on this task, and I will not interrupt myself. You can do it! After all, it’s just 25 minutes.”
  3. Take a break; these breaks allow you to recharge and refocus and reduce the negative self-talk that can sneak up on you when you are just not in the mood to complete a task.  Negative self-talk starts with something along the lines of “I will never get this done.”  It will break your spirit and make it hard for you to tap into the personal power you need to make it through to the end.  

If you write the next great American novel, during the time of COVID-19 congratulations, and if you emerge with your sanity intact, and an organized closet, congratulations to you too.

Wishing you Peace and Love,

Renee

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How Can I Help My Family Members Understand My Mental Illness?

Note:  Today’s blog has a new format; I will be answering a question from one of readers.  If you have a question you would like to ask about health and wellness, relationships, or life, please email me at info@reneereid.net, and your question could be featured on a future podcast.

Today’s question is from Brandiss, she writes, I am 50 years old and was diagnosed with depression about six years ago.  I am married and have two teenaged daughters, I have been trying to explain my diagnosis to my family, but they don’t seem to understand what I am going through. Now that we are all stuck home together, I thought this would be a good time for us to have an honest conversation.  How should I start?

Brandiss, thank you so much for your question; I know that the pandemic, social isolation, and sheltering in place has been a trigger for many of us suffering from a mental health disorder.  I am so grateful to be out of bed today.  As a Mental Health Practitioner, I worked with families to help them to understand their loved one’s diagnosis so that they can be a natural support for them once our services ended.  Sometimes, it worked.  Sometimes it didn’t.  

I know we have made a lot of progress, but there is still a stigma attached to a mental health diagnosis.  I applaud you and anyone who has the courage not only to face their diagnosis but also to share it with their families so that they can begin to understand and provide valuable help when it is needed.   I have four tips that I think will work well for you and anyone dealing with a chronic illness.  Your mental illness is probably not going to go away but can be managed successfully.  These four steps should get the conversation started.

  1. Education:  Don’t skip this step; it would help if family members had a bird’s eye view of exactly what symptoms and causes of your mental health diagnosis.  They don’t need a dissertation; you can simply give them a pamphlet, article, or book.  You can provide the information and then give them time to digest it and ask you questions.  Check out this TEDx talk by Dr. Lloyd  Sederer entitled When Mental Illness Enters a Family.  You and your family can watch Dr. Sederer’s talk together.
  2. Be Clear on What You Need:  This is not the time to have family members guessing on how to help you, guesswork will just increase the stress for both you and your loved one.  So, tell them, when I feel this way__________, I need you too___________.   Remember that you and your family members are dealing with something that even the medical community doesn’t fully understand.    For example, when I am having an anxiety attack, I need you to remind me of one of my coping strategies, whether that’s journaling, walking, listening to a meditation recording, or yelling into a pillow.  Knowing what to do will empower your family members.
  3. Explain your triggers:  If you have worked with a mental health practitioner, then you’ve heard of triggers.  Discuss yours with your family so that they can be aware that a person, place, thing, or event can trigger an episode for you.   About three years ago, I was working with a client who was diagnosed with OCD.  We sat down with her kids and explained to them that leaving the shoes and bookbags at the front door when they came home from school was a trigger for mom.  Instead, we asked them to take all their belongings to their room.  Because when they dropped them at the door, this triggered mom to want to clean for two or three hours instead of cooking dinner.  If possible, schedule a meeting with you and your family and your therapist.  They can provide real support for you as you try to explain to your family how they can help.
  4. Guard your feelings: sometimes, family members and friends can be very supportive and loving, and sometimes they will just not understand.  You do not have to argue with them or try to convince them that what you are feeling is real.   Remember that Supportive Loved Ones Come in All Shapes and Sizes, if you cannot find natural support from your family and friends, look for it in the form of professional assistance from a therapist, case manager, or coach.  Search for online support groups or start your own.  While you want family members to be there for you, give yourself permission to focus on getting well.

If you are trying to provide support for someone who has been diagnosed with a mental illness check out Nami the National Alliance ON Mental Illness -they have an excellent program called Family to Family that is designed to help family members have a better understanding about mental illness and how they can be supportive. I took this program way back in 2010 and it was a great resource.

Wishing You Peace and Love,

Renee

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Overeating Does Not Make You a Lost Cause or a Bad Person- It Makes You Human!

So, you had a bad eating day, who hasn’t, this journey toward health is a marathon, not a sprint, so allow yourself some grace, or you won’t last.  If what you’ve eaten today does not necessarily line up with your healthy eating plan.  Write down why!  What happened that threw you off track:

Did you forget to pack your lunch?  Did you skip breakfast? Did you stay up late watching the news and didn’t get enough sleep? Are you sad? 

When you take a step back and look at the day through your logical eye and not emotions, you can pinpoint the trigger and correct your course.  Overeating does not make you a bad person or a lost cause.  It makes you human!

So, you had a bad eating day, who hasn’t, this journey toward health is a marathon, not a sprint, so allow yourself some grace, or you won’t last.  If what you’ve eaten today does not necessarily line up with your healthy eating plan.  Write down why!  What happened that threw you off track:

Did you forget to pack your lunch?  Did you skip breakfast? Did you stay up late watching the news and didn’t get enough sleep? Are you sad? 

When you take a step back and look at the day through your logical eye and not emotions, you can pinpoint the trigger and correct your course.  Overeating does not make you a bad person or a lost cause.  It makes you human!

So, you had a bad eating day, who hasn’t, this journey toward health is a marathon, not a sprint, so allow yourself some grace, or you won’t last.  If what you’ve eaten today does not necessarily line up with your healthy eating plan.  Write down why!  What happened that threw you off track:

Did you forget to pack your lunch?  Did you skip breakfast? Did you stay up late watching the news and didn’t get enough sleep? Are you sad? 

When you take a step back and look at the day through your logical eye and not emotions, you can pinpoint the trigger and correct your course.  Overeating does not make you a bad person or a lost cause.  It makes you human!

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How to End the Struggle with Nighttime Grazing

Nighttime eating can ruin the physical and emotional progress you’ve made during the day. There are several reasons why we continue to eat after the dinner meal is over.  It could be that you’re bored, hungry, or using food to meet a need other than hunger.   

To end the struggle, try creating a routine.  Make sure that you are getting enough sleep and spread out your meals during the day.  Take out a piece of paper right now and write down your eating and sleeping schedule for the next week.  Spreading meals out through the day will help you to feel less hungry at night. Make sure your meals include a protein, grain, veggie, and a healthy fat.

Remember, if your body is used to eating more calories than it needs, it might take seven to ten days for it to self-regulate when you start eating the calories you need to live and thrive.

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Four Ways to Be Productive Working from Home When the World Is Falling A Part

Note:  The blog has a new format; during this time of crisis, I will be answering your questions.  I hope that in some small way this will be of service to you all.  If you have a question, you would like to ask, please leave it in the comments or email me at info@reneereid.net. Let me know if you would like your name to be used. 

Today’s question is from Laura: She writes, “I am 52 years old and like most of us, I am working from home.  My kids are home from school and my husband is working from home as well.   I used to pride myself on my productivity at work and at home, but in the last week my productivity has plummeted.  My boss was tracking my work and called to say she noticed I wasn’t getting much done.  Help!!!!

Okay, that title might be a little over the top, but that is just how I feel now.  And as you can see, Laura feels that way too, but to be honest, everything in our lives seems to be exaggerated, out of control, and more than a little overwhelming.  But, before we get started, I want to remind you that while you may be working remotely in your corner of the world, you are not alone.  We are a community of supportive, loving, quirky folks who have each other’s back.  And not even a social distancing directive can change that, I am here for you and so is everyone in our little community. So, if you have a question for us, please write in. 

Now, Laura, first let me say I am sorry that you are experiencing so much angst over working from home.  Working from home is not for everyone and being put in a situation like this so quickly without time to prepare can be a lot to handle emotionally.   The question for all of us is, how can we maintain an optimal level of productivity working from home?  As you know, Covid-19 has forced many companies to either shut down entirely or send their workforce with laptops in hand home to work.  Remote work can be great, but if you are not used to managing yourself without the oversight of a supervisor or your work colleagues, it can be a bit daunting.  These tips will work for you if you are a regular 9-5 worker or if you work for yourself but have used your local coffee shop as your makeshift office.

They will help you to stay on task, boost your productivity, and calm the overwhelm you might be feeling right now because these tips are things that you can control.  And that is what we all need right now, a little bit of control.

  1.  You must maintain a regular work schedule.  The first days after being laid-off, my daily schedule was all over the place. Which was a surprise to me because I am a Coach who has worked with midlife women on identifying and removing time eaters from their daily schedules.  Why? Because if you do not control your time, every area of your life is affected.  Secondly, I was just lamenting the week before how much more work I could get done on my business, if I didn’t have a big chunk of my day eaten away by my work schedule.  Fast forward a week later, and I am trying to write my blog, answer coaching calls, record a podcast, all while trying to watch the latest news coverage, and do my laundry.  That week was a bust.  This week, I instituted my regular work schedule using the hours I would have been working outside of my home.  So, my work hours are from 9 am-3 pm, this also required me to reinstitute my regular bedtime so that I could rise and do my morning routine before sitting down at my desk at 9 am.
  2. Create a designated work area and set clear boundaries.  Bryan Robinson, a contributor for Forbes magazine, suggests, “Have a space that you designate as your workstation instead of checking emails, voicemails, or texting in front of the TV or spreading work out on the kitchen table.”   Having a designated work area will not only keep you focused, but it will send a signal to you and the rest of the family that you are in work mode and should not be disturbed unless it is a real emergency.   If you do not set this clear boundary, you might feel like you are working all the time, or your family will interrupt all day, and you won’t get anything done.  Both will zap your energy and your focus.  You also want to make it clear to family and friends that while you may be at home, you are still working, and they should wait to call you until after your workday ends.  It might be a good idea to schedule a family meeting to go over the daily schedule, which should include your designated work time and scheduled time to hang out with significant others and kids.

3. Take frequent breaks.  Just because you are working from home doesn’t mean that you can’t take a break, schedule in lunchtime and 15-minute breaks the same as you would if you were in your office.  Use your break to refresh your brain and move your body, go for a walk, stretch, sit outside and soak in some vitamin D.  My Fitbit reminds me every hour to walk for ten minutes, which helps me to refocus and add some steps to my daily step total. 

4. Stay connected to your colleagues and work friends.  Working from home can be lonely.  Thankfully, we live in the digital age, and platforms like Slack, Zoom, and Mighty Networks make it possible for you to not only share work products but also check in to see how your work buddy is faring during your time of separation.

5. My bonus tip is to plan your day the night before.  Start by clearing your work area, lay out your workout and work clothes for the following day, yes you must get dressed, you wouldn’t go to the office in your pajamas. According to a 2012 study from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University, clothing may also have an impact on personal performance. If people associate certain qualities with certain items of clothing, it can influence how they act in those clothes.   Also, plan your menu for the day and what exercise you want to tackle if you work out in the morning.  Doing this the night before will open your mind space and decrease any overwhelm you might be feeling when you wake up.  I have found that doing these steps before I go to bed makes my morning run smoothly.

This is a trying time for all of us, however, you might find that when this is over and yes, it will end, that you handled this situation so well that you get a promotion, land the job of your dreams or, double your business if you are working for yourself, Control what you can control.

I hope that these tips were helpful. I’m sure you have heard them before sometimes we have to hear things more than once before we act.  Let’s take action. 

Remember, you are stronger than you give yourself credit and more blessed than you know.

Guys, if you have any further tips for Laura, please leave them in the comments. How are handling working from home?

It’s that time again

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Self-Care In the Time of Covid-19

Hello, my friends,
I am sending so much love your way, these are challenging times, and some of you may already be experiencing significant financial hardship due to your company shutting completely down or having your work hours drastically cut. I feel your pain, Monday was my last day of work.
I am very grateful that my last child has finally returned home. I am here with my aunt, able to ensure that she is doing well and has everything she needs; still praying that my husband will get to join us soon.
Wakeup calls come in many forms, being let go from a job, the breakup of a relationship, or a pandemic that threatens the whole world. While it is inevitable that you will feel some fear and trepidations at the thought of an unknown future, this is your chance to take stock of your life and finally make the changes you have been putting off until someday. Someday is now!

I am asking that you replace your panic and fear with faith and action.  This is not the time to put your self-care on the bottom of your “to do”. Besides the precautions suggested by the CDC – you can read them here.    You need to be focusing on your physical, emotional, and physical health is what is going to get you through this crisis.  I have put together eight tips that I know will help you take care of yourself and remain calmer during this crisis.

These tips have helped my family,  friends, clients and me to stay in the present and cut our worrying in half.
1. Take quiets moments throughout the day for prayer/meditation: The early morning or late evening hours tend to be the best time to make this happen. But whether you are home “self-isolating” or still working, take a moment throughout the day to pray, meditate, reflect, and journal your thoughts. This will help you to manage your stress.
2. Eat whole foods: I have also been tempted to munch away on a bag of M&M’s my favorite candy in the world. But this is not the time to put your wellness journey on hold. Your immune system needs you to consume whole foods to keep it running at its optimal health. Whole foods are minimally processed and have little to no refined sugars. These foods include vegetables, fruits, whole grains, legumes, seeds, and nuts.
3. Exercise 30 minutes per day: Don’t forsake your daily exercise. I know the gyms are closed, but a home workout will yield some fantastic results. Check out YouTube for complete workouts lasting from 10 to 60 minutes. Or you can download my friend Laurie’s complete at-home workout guide here.
4. Stay connected: write, call, or facetime family and friends: While you may not be able to be in the same room, thanks to technology, we can still connect. Surprise someone you haven’t had time to speak within a while with a long-overdue phone call.
5. Focus on the positive- gratitude: “Making gratitude a daily practice is like taking a vitamin,” says David DeSteno, Ph.D., a professor of psychology at Northeastern University in Boston and author of the book Emotional Success.

6. Don’t Overload on Information: Decide on what time of day you will consume information about the virus and then stick with your plan. Cut down your watch time into 10, 15, or 30-minute chunks no more than that, or you will get sucked in and find yourself watching news coverage all day.
7. Say a prayer for others: One way to take your mind off yourself is to pray or send kind thoughts to others in need. This virus has affected all of us, and we need to come together to provide love and support.
8. Get some rest:   While you may want to stay up all night, doing a virus vigil can wreak havoc with your health. Like healthy eating, your immune system needs you to be well-rested to help it work properly. Regular sleep will also help you to be at your emotional best. Stick to a regular sleep schedule and throw in a power nap if you need it. Your body will thank you for it,
You will get through this; don’t give in to fear and worry; instead, take the necessary precautions and stand firm in your faith. This is your time to shine! Be the leader you are called to be, even at this moment in time, you still have the power to create the life you want to live.
I will be coming to you each day with new tips and resources to steady your mind, help you keep your health promises, and to just keep you busy, so don’t forget to follow the blog so you don’t miss any upcoming posts.

Wishing you peace and love,

Renee

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Is Your Weight Holding Your Life Hostage

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How many of you have said, the moment I lose this weight, I will plan my dream vacation.  I am going to get some new sexy underwear.  I am going to get a new hair cut or get rid of this soul-sucking relationship.  “When I lose weight, I will get my teeth whitened.”  I was working with a woman who told me she was waiting to get her teeth whitened until she lost the weight.

Today I want to talk to you about not waiting until you reach that magical number on the scale and begin to live your life. I want to share with you three ways that you can start living your life right now!

Stay Present:  You have to start loving where you are right now, stop warring with your body and learn to love it just the way it is rolls and all.  Do not dwell on your past or on the future.  You cannot change the past, and your future depends on what steps you take today.  When the negative self-talk begins, counter it with this exercise. 

  • Close your eyes-be still-take a deep breath in through your nose and out through your nose (three times)
  • Continue breathing, and on each exhale repeat to yourself, I am enough just the way I am. (Three times)
  • Repeat until you have quieted your spirit or calmed your nerves

Do this regularly, this mindfulness tool will help you to reign in those negative thoughts and begin the work of repairing your mindset.  Until we treat ourselves with love and respect regardless of our dress size, no one else will. 

Go shopping now:  Get out of that worn sweat suit, black yoga pants, and hot polyester outfits.  Dress the body you have, I thought buying clothes that fit me was a sign of weakness.  I was telling myself that I would never lose the weight and I felt uneasy about dressing my new curves.  Then I caught my reflection in my full-length mirror as I was leaving home one day.  Who is that? I almost asked myself, dressed in an oversized gray t-shirt and a pair of black stretch pants.  This was my daily uniform.  I felt sad and depressed, and it showed in the way I carried myself and my interaction with everyone I encountered, I went out that day and purchased some new clothes. 

Dressing my new curves gave me more confidence.  I felt polished, and it ended the overwhelm I felt each morning when I went into my closet, trying to find something to wear.

[A capsule wardrobe is] a practice of editing your wardrobe down to your favorite clothes (clothes that fit your lifestyle + body right now), remixing them regularly, and shopping less often and more intentionally.

My advice is to create a capsule wardrobe.  Shop for a few essential pieces that you can mix and match.  I purchased four pairs of knit slacks in black, burgundy, gray, and navy.  Four knit skirts in the same colors with a nice wide elastic band.   I stayed away from buttons and zippers.  Opting for wide bands are best because they prevent the top of your clothing from rolling down under your belly.  Then I purchased 8 pretty tops, a couple of cardigans, two blazers, and a denim jacket.  With these pieces, I could dress up or play it casually.  Now, I had a wardrobe to take through the seasons and help me to feel comfortable and pretty.  I wore these pieces until I lost the weight.  It was a wonderful experience, and my weight loss journey much easier.

     Finally, start doing the things you love; do not be afraid to go out to dinner just plan.  Buy those tickets to see your favorite band, each week you should be doing something fun.  Make fun Friday a reality, stop living vicariously through the IG photos of family and friends, and start posting your own.  The truth is we don’t know what tomorrow holds, so live your life each day as though it was your last.  Smile, and be happy!

You are beautiful at your present weight.  Losing weight may give you more confidence in the short-run, but if you do not heal your mindset and say present in your life, the weight is going to come back, and you will be back on that diet merry-go-round of self-defeating, negative self-talk which leads to self-loathing and comfort eating.  You deserve more than that.

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You Want to Lose Weight? Cook More Meals at Home

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You’ve been trying to lose weight; you lose a few pounds only to gain them right back and sometimes more.  It could be that the food you’re eating when you dine out is the culprit.  Eating more meals at home is strategy number 2 of our guide Beating the Midlife slump 10 strategies to boost your self-confidence, self-care, and self-love, you can download your free guide here.

Eating more meals at home is especially helpful when you are at the beginning of your wellness journey.  As it will allow you to control the portion sizes of our meals.

When you cook more meals at home, not only do you tend to eat healthier, but you can also save time, money, and calories. If you prepare a meal and make a double or triple batch, you’ll have leftovers for lunches or another dinner.  By cooking once and eating two or three times, you are becoming incredibly efficient with your time, money, and calories.

I have to admit that when Dunkin Donuts introduced their Beyond Sausage sandwich, right after Burger King announced the Beyond Sausage Whooper, I was overjoyed. I cannot tell you how many sandwiches I ate, but let’s say it was a daily occurrence for at least a month and a half. Finally, one day when trying to put on my favorite jeans, I discovered not to my surprise that they did not fit. Eating all that bread everyday had finally caught up to me. Even though I was still exercising everyday. It’s true what they say, you cannot exercise a bad diet.

What we have to realize ladies, is that once you hit midlife, the way your body burned calories is not the way it burned calories at 25 or 35. There will be some foods that we can’t eat or we have to eat in moderation.

It’s much easier to eat healthy when you’re the one selecting the ingredients and preparing the meals. I know it takes more time to plan and prepare yourself, but if you are looking to lose or maintain your weight, feel better, and save money, it’s worth the effort. On the nights that you have other activities going on with the kids or community functions, the crockpot is a HUGE help!

Need dinner ideas? There are so many great websites for recipe ideas, including:

  • Allrecipes.com
  • Hellofresh.com
  • Forks Over Knives
  • eMeals.com (this is a paid service that sends you 5 dinner recipes each week based on the dietary style you choose)
  • Tasty App

If life is just way too hectic, you can use services like Hello Fresh, I have used them often, and the meals are excellent. They provide you with an excellent menu for the week and send you all the ingredients you need to create a healthy, delicious meal in the comfort of your own home. Most meals are done in less than 45 minutes, and you might even have some leftovers for lunch the next day. This option is super convenient!

I get asked a lot by single women, do I have to cook at home or could I just go out and eat dinner? I hate cooking for one person. And my answer is the same there is no one more important for you to cook for at this time of your life than you. Single ladies, make eating your meals at home a joyful experience. Purchase new cookware or dinnerware. Set the table, put on your favorite music, and enjoy your meal.

As with any change, you don’t have to jump in with both feet, baby steps are okay, if you are making positive movement towards your wellness goals. Just ask yourself, what one action step can you take this week to prepare more meals at home?

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Five Tips on Finding a Gym You’ll Love and Use This Year!

I know it’s the middle of January, but, Happy New Year, my sister, I know that 2020 is going to be a fantastic year for us, as we grow spiritually, heal emotionally, and get physically fit.  Like millions of midlife women across the land, you have probably decided that it is time for you to revisit the idea of regular exercise.  I don’t have to tell you the benefits of regular exercise especially for women over 40, but my momma/coaching instincts are kicking in, and I want to make sure that you understand that putting in the physical work now could save you from not just weight gain but brittle bones, compromised immune systems, loss of energy, Type 2 Diabetes and heart disease.

But, how do you find a gym that you will love enough to use three times per week after the excitement of the New Year has subsided.  You know, there are so many weight loss programs, new and exciting exercise equipment like the Peloton bike, but the hard truth is that as a country we are more out of shape today than any time in our history.

My own quest for the perfect gym in 2019 had me feeling like Goldilocks.  The first gym was close to home but didn’t have the classes I loved or a pool.  The second gym had classes and a pool, but the yoga classes were more like physical fitness classes instead of the quiet meditative qualities I love in yoga, plus I wanted a gym that offered more fun networking events.  That led me to my third gym, it had the classes I love, a pool, and fun networking events.  But again, the yoga classes felt like I was in a middle school gym class.  So, you guessed it, I joined a yoga studio.   By the end of 2019, I had four fitness memberships.  Thankfully, they have all ended.  But I want to make sure you don’t make the same mistakes.

Here five tips that will help you find a gym that you will love or at least one that you will visit as much in July as you will in January:

  1. First, pick a gym that is close to home.  That way, whether you rock your workout at 5 a.m. or 5 p.m.  You will not have to drive more than 15-20 minutes out of your way to workout.  So, check out the gyms in your local area. Make sure that it has ample parking, and ample lighting, if you are going before the sun, comes out.  You don’t want to give yourself any reasons for not actually parking your car and walking into the building.
  2. Check your budget:  It’s always exciting to start something new, even a new workout routine, the pull of getting our bodies ready for the beach are undeniable.  But, make sure that the monthly fees fit in your household budget.  Read the contract and check for additional cancellation fees.  Nothing puts a damper in your motivation to workout than worrying about how you are going to pay the monthly fees.  Also, if your gyms fees are being automatically withdrawn, check your bank statement to make sure that you are only being charged the amount on your contract.
  3. Pick a gym that has activities you love:   If you just want to work out on the treadmill, the bike, or elliptical and lift weights, a gym like Planet Fitness could be all that you need.   I enjoyed my membership at Planet Fitness, they have enough machines and weight equipment that even during peak times you could probably get in an out within an hour.  But I also needed my weekly yoga fix, so I then had to join a yoga studio.  My advice is to look for a gym that has everything you need for a complete fitness routine.   If you enjoy aerobics or yoga classes, then look for a gym that has a regular line up of those classes.  Visit a couple of classes to get a feel for the instructor, and then choose the class you love, make a commitment to yourself to attend that class every week.  Put it on your schedule, lock it in, make it a non-negotiable use of your time.
  4. Partner with an accountability partner: most gyms have personal trainers who will help you to get back into the groove after a long fitness hiatus, but they will also act as your accountability partner, helping you get the most out of your visit each week.  Some personal trainers will even give you a call if you miss a week.  You can also grab a friend and pinkie swear to help keep each other motivated and engaged throughout the year. 
  5. Check out the culture: Every gym, like every workplace, has its own culture.  Find one that is right for you.  To do so, ask yourself the following questions, do you want a gym where you can work out and attend social activities?  Do you want a gym that is oriented more towards accommodating the needs of families? Do you want that is oriented more towards adults and children persona non grata?  

The bottom line is that you need to find a gym that is close to home, affordable, has the equipment and classes you need for a complete fitness routine.  You will need an accountability partner to help keep you going to the gym when your motivation starts to disappear, and you want to make sure that the culture of the gym is one that fits your personality and your needs at this time in your life.

There are 168 hours in a week.  We owe it to ourselves to take 150 minutes a week to get our minds and bodies in tip-top shape.  Let’s face it, you may not always enjoy working out, but exercising regularly will help you enjoy your life and increase your gratitude level.   I promise!