More Ways to Get Energy

Today more than ever it’s imperative that we take care of ourselves.

Engaging in protest could drain us of energy. We don’t have time to wait to see progress. Today everyone’s tired of being told to wait. It takes a lot of physical stamina to march in the streets.

On the radio this week the disc jockey told listeners to take care of ourselves.

Each of us is possessed with a power bigger than our pain.

Yet sometimes the pain we feel–whether about injustice or our own illness or other things–can be overwhelming.

What do I think about how to take care of ourselves?

It comes down to conserving our energy for the tasks that are essential. Letting everything else slide.

I wrote in here recently about how to get energy. A Real Simple issue titled Find Your Balance has an article on The New Rules of Eating for Energy:

Eat protein for breakfast.

People who have a high-protein meal of about 30 grams first thing in the morning with low glycemic load food had the highest energy level.

Drink plenty of water.

I wrote about this in my last blog entry on getting energy.

Fatigue sets in when you get dehydrated.

Have a healthful snack during the day that has fiber protein and healthy fat.

This could be a handful of almonds or cashews or walnuts.

Eat more calories earlier in the day.

You have a food circadian rhythm. Having a moderate-sized meal for breakfast and lunch and a small meal for dinner could be the way to go.

Nix sugar as a source of energy.

After the initial blood-sugar spike you’ll be left drained.

Dine with friends.

As per the Real Simple energy article:

Social interaction has been shown to help people manage stress pain and sadness all of which are drains on energy.

There is a cookbook titled Protest Kitchen.

If I remember it caters to vegan recipes. You might be able to check it out of the library where you live. It’s available from the library system in Brooklyn NY.

Theme for This Blog Going Forward

My goal in this blog has become to act as a motivational speaker in print.

I envision my blog as being a safe space on the internet to promote what I value:

Living in health harmony and happiness with yourself and others.

Most likely I have written in here before that I value fitness of body, mind, spirit, career, finances, and relationships.

As I remain mostly indoors while living in the epicenter [New York City] of the pandemic I’ve decided to continue to write motivational blog entries.

I choose to cater to a target market of people coming together to honor, accept, and embrace each other’s individuality.

I choose to serve a target market of individuals who want to be healthy, wealthy, and wise in the ways that count.

I choose to use my life experiences and accumulated wisdom to educate, empower, and entertain a target market of people who seek to heal what’s not right in society:

Namely, the corrosive hate and judgment that reinforces stigma and makes it impossible to heal from any kind of ill-ness.

My focus will be on ideas I have for achieving mental and physical health.

In the next blog entry I will talk some more about the six categories of fitness talked about above.

Living in the Epicenter of the Pandemic

I wanted to write about what it’s like to live in New York City–the epicenter of the pandemic.

1 in 5 New York City residents have been infected.

15,500 people here have died from the coronavirus.

58,000 people in the U.S. have died from the coronavirus.

1 million Americans in the U.S. have been infected.

The novel coronavirus appeared in the U.S. as early as late December 2019.

As a person who works with 100s of members of the public everyday I was at a greater risk for far longer than I should’ve been.

New York libraries shut down on March 16. It was revealed that the coronavirus appeared in New York State as early as mid-February.

I was put at risk far longer than I should’ve been. I don’t take this lightly.

Going outdoors I wear a black bandanna. I have a host of 10 red bandannas that I will alternate with the black bandannas.

You have to wash the bandannas frequently after using them.

I find myself gasping for air under the bandanna when I’m walking outside.

Screwed-up are the people who go outside and don’t wear a bandanna.

They’re putting other people at risk of getting infected.

Living through this tragedy in the form of disease I’ve come to a turning point in how I want to move forward writing blog entries here.

The pandemic has changed how I see things.

I’ve become more committed to championing mental and physical health for everyone living on earth.

Taking a Detour

My life changed forever in one night in 1987 when I was 22.

I had to take a detour that lasted for 13 years. You got that right–13 years.

In light of the COVID-19 pandemic I want to talk about taking a detour.

Let me tell you a detour is not a dead-end. It’s a pit stop along the way to a different path.

Maybe you’re not supposed to get what you want quickly and painlessly.

That is the goal as I see it–to embrace the struggle for what it is– a learning of something you need to know in order to get what you want.

I care a lot that in this pandemic everything seems to have been put on hold. A sunny day can be harder to envision.

I would say my life didn’t get better until I turned 35 and started my library job and moved to Brooklyn.

Sometimes where you start out isn’t where you should remain.

That is the ultimate purpose of a detour: to cement in your mind the one true path you must go down to be happy and fulfilled.

You don’t often figure out until you experience firsthand a setback the truth about who you are and where you should be going in life.

Again–I think of these things during the pandemic we’re living through. Of how it can seem like this is the end of everything–the end of your hopes and dreams for whatever you had hoped to achieve.

I say: use this time to engage in active reflection.  Get out a notebook and sketch out what your goals will be when the pandemic is over.

Shore up your good feelings while you shelter in place.

Remember that after things get better there’s so much life for all of us to live.

Moving Forward in the Blog

I want to start to talk about things no one else has dared talk about.

The number-one takeaway I’ve come away with while having been inside my apartment for 3 weeks is this:

Art is a Guaranty of Sanity

like the refrigerator magnet I bought proclaims.

My destiny appears to be to use the creative process to turn my ideas into reality.

By blogging and writing books to educate, entertain, and empower my target market.

Which as I see it is people who want to recover and need to recover.

My goal is to advance my vision of recovery from whatever a person is in recovery from.

This can be from an illness, from a micro-aggression, from any kind of setback hardship or obstacle either internal or external.

No–we cannot go back to the way things were in society before the CO-VI19 outbreak.

Egotism and bigotry must not prevail.

People cannot continue to hate and judge each other.

We need to halt acting greedy and seedy pursuing power at the expense of other human beings.

I identify as an Artist.

As an Artist, I believe in the transformative beauty of creating art to make the world a better place.

There’s so much that’s not right in society. I would like to do my part to change the frequency in terms of shifting the needle to the left of the dial.

To start a dialogue where everyone is free to speak the truth about who they are and why they’re here in this lifetime.

To use the blogs as an outlet to help others believe that recovery is possible.

To continue to write mostly about topics geared to mental and physical health.

To give readers a shot in the arm of confidence to express themselves without fear of reprisal.

I firmly believe that each of us is possessed with a power bigger than our pain.

The CO-VID19 outbreak will end.

It’s time to plan for a better future for ourselves, our loved ones, and the planet.

 

Using the Creative Process to Heal

Having sheltered in place for over 2 weeks has gotten me to think and reflect on planning for the future.

I’ve formulated the goal to publish fiction with a traditional publisher.

While in my apartment I have been writing a new novel.

As an Artist who is an Author I have long touted using the creative process to heal from an illness.

I was lucky that 5 days before New York City shut down I was able to go in person to Best-Buy to order a new computer.

Since then I’ve been writing the new novel.

My experience while indoors living through this pandemic has reinforced my vision that recovery is possible.

Engaging in the creative process–sketching and painting, listening to the radio or playing an instrument, writing poetry or short stories or a book–can enable a person to live through a crisis like the one we’re experiencing.

Engaging in the creative process enabled me to heal from a serious illness.

The CO-VID19 pandemic has tragically ended a lot of people’s lives. I”m not discounting that death is possible because of the coronavirus.

What I’m getting at is that living through this pandemic by sheltering in place has changed my view of living life on an ordinary day.

Once the CO-VID19 outbreak has resolved I plan to act bolder. To not take anyone else’s bull crap. To walk to the edge of my comfort zone and keep on going.

I have more to say about using the creative process to recover. I’ll talk about this in the next blog entry.

Thriving in a Crisis – Some Thoughts

New York State has the highest recorded number of cases of CO-VID19  in the United States.

In New York City where I live Mayor DeBlasio has stated that it’s possible that upwards of 50 percent of the residents will become infected.

This blog entry is the first in a carnival of entries I want to write on the topic of thriving in a crisis.  You might learn something from my experience having sheltered in place for over two weeks.

I submit that protecting your mental health in a time of crisis like this pandemic we’re experiencing is predicated on one simple tactic: enjoying your own company when you’re alone.

Not seeking to numb your thoughts and feelings with snacks, food, drugs, or alcohol.

You need to like yourself when you’re alone because that’s what matters in the end–not whether other people like you when you’re outside.

I don’t like to watch to TV. Watching TV is touted as a pleasant activity. In fact  I detest watching TV.

While sheltering in place I have started to write a new novel that is a work of fiction.

In the coming blog entries I want to talk about how thriving in a crisis is possible.

My experience sheltering in place has profoundly altered how I see things.

 

Sheltering in Place

My job has shut down indefinitely.

As others might be sheltering in place as well I would like to take about mental health in a time of crisis.

The number-one goal as I see it in this time of staying indoors is to eat as healthfully as possible.

The second critical goal is to keep up your mental health.

You can click on my home gym category to see how you can exercise at home.

I’ve been buying a CSA box of organic produce plus a mound of cheese and carton of eggs via FreshDirect online grocer in New York City.

Type in CSA box in the search bar.

PeaPod is available elsewhere.

As long as you can keep up buying food this is what is imperative.

What matters most as I see it is protecting your mental and physical health.

Today more than every nutritious food can elevate your mood.

I would tell others to stay inside. Only go out to the bank or food shopping or the laundry center should you have to. You might think nothing could happen because you’ve been inside a long time so far. I wouldn’t risk going out.

Stay 6 feet away from others as recommended to practice social distancing.

In a coming blog entry I’ll post a message I posted to my other blog.

It bears repeating that having compassion is the way to go.

Be kind to yourself when you’re holed up in your apartment or house.

The CO-VID19 outbreak will settle down. We will return to normal.

Giving Yourself a Lifeline

Years ago when I was the Health Guide at a website I wrote an article there about goal-setting. Over five years ago I first advanced the idea of giving yourself a lifeline. Instead of a strict impossible-to-achieve-by deadline.

The goal of exercising 5 days a week I would say is unrealistic for most people except athletes and fitness buffs.

The goal of losing 20 or 30 or more pounds also can’t be executed quickly.

How quick is too quick? Expecting change within three weeks is not realistic. 90 days is the Changeology action plan length of time for achieving a goal. And some goals will take years and years to achieve.

The fact is that the cumulative effect of the sub-goals you’re executing week-by-week adds up over time.

You might not notice a difference until 5 months later. Five months later the change might seem to have come out of the blue. And it seems sudden and astounding.

I also know from my own experience that having a fallow period is to be expected.

This fallow period can last a year or two and not just a week or two weeks or a season.

That’s why getting hung up on achieving goals quickly is a mistake.

A fallow period or a plateau is to be expected and planned for.

A setback is the cost of doing business in the real world. It’s why I don’t like to use the word failure. Thinking you’re a failure sets you up to not want to try again when the first option didn’t work out.

When a goal doesn’t go as you planned that’s a sign that you need to adapt your strategy.

Life will tell you what to do if only you stop to listen.

Taking time to slow down is imperative. It’s called practicing mindfulness and I wrote about this in here a year ago. You can use the search bar of this blog to type in the word mindfulness to find this blog entry to read.

The fact is that rush, rush, rushing through your goals, your activities, and your life only serves to backfire.

Italians have the ethic of “piano-piano” which is doing things slowly slowly.

See if what I’ve written makes sense. Giving yourself a lifeline might just be the secret solution to achieving your goals.

Quick is often the antithesis of lasting when it comes to making changes.

Going at your goals rat-a-tat-tat and firing away at them every single minute of the day might also impede success.

Voila–extending to yourself a lifeline.

Having Hope for Making Changes

I want to use my own experience as a beacon to guide readers in making positive changes.

My own life could empower you that there’s hope.

Even when it seems like there’s an obstacle: you’re too old, too out of shape, too ill, whatever “too” that you think is holding you back.

Exhibit Chris: I didn’t start lifting weights until I turned 46 in 2011. For about five or six months before my birthday I rarely did any exercise.

From the week before Christmas until this week in January 2020–for about one month I hadn’t done a walk/run on the treadmill. And I lifted weights only sporadically until this week too.

The point of this story is that you need to take the long view.

A temporary setback today has no impact on your success in the end.

Exhibit A Guy I Know: He hadn’t held a job in a number of years. He turned 55 and said: “This is it. No more inactivity. I’m going to get a job.”

Change is possible at any time along the road in your recovery or your life. I went to graduate school with a woman who was 70.

Danica Patrick in her book tells readers to simply do the next healthy thing. After you do this thing, do the next health thing after that. And so on.

This is how sustaining following through on your goal happens: you set sub-goals along the way.

I liken this to compartmentalizing your efforts. When you do this you can be effective for the long-term.

Just to tell readers that you’re not alone. You’re not unusual.

Everyone falls down along the way to getting where we want to be. Getting back up–being resilient–is key.

The Changeology book details strategies to employ when you’ve had a setback.

I’ll end here with my last words of encouragement:

Start where you are. Today is how it is and tomorrow can be different.

I hope that my own life experience can inspire you that change is possible.