Blog

Good Morning 2022! What will you create this year? How to keep your Focus and Build the Life You Want. 

I love this day. It’s often the only day I allow myself to wear my pajamas all day and do nothing … or not.

For some reason on the 1st day of the year I have a lot more grace with myself.

This year I’m going to create more bliss and balance in my life. I’m going to take the grace I often give myself on the 1st day of the year and extend that into other days sprinkled throughout.

Living a life with meaning has a lot to do with the ability to balance your priorities and joy. In the clinic we see so many people who are sad or angry because their lives lack purpose and meaning.

Here’s 3 tips on how to stay focused and crush your 2022 goals.

Photo Credit: Photo by Marisol Benitez on Unsplash

On New Year’s Day most of us figure out some resolutions – changes we want to make and things we want to let go of. Then we get busy hyper-focusing on them. 

My time managing fitness centers taught me that by Feb 14th we would have enough towels, lockers, and parking spaces again. People burned out on their focus and quit those new years’s goals within 6 weeks of making them. 

READ MORE ON THE BLOG: 

Healthy Eating Made Easy

3 Ways to Bring Joy to Your Fitness. Fitness is a Feeling

Ground Hog Day in Your Life? The pain of staying the same or the pain of change? 7 Steps to master moving your life forward for the better.

Over the years, I learned a few things to make sure that burned out shooting star is not what I do:

1st – Sustainable change happens in small steps. Research shows solid consistent change in about 10% increments is the most predictable sign that someone will really shift their lifestyle. Sometimes it is hard to get started you can sign up with a coach, online program, or even do therapy focused activities at home.

2nd – Tracking works. I can hear your groans. Many of my clients are very audible when I bring this up. However, again research shows us that by just tracking your current behavior you will change it. Begin just counting how many times / day you do X behavior. 

It can be one you want to let go of or one you want to increase. Just becoming aware of what you are currently doing and why (triggers for that behavior) will shift your consciousness around it.

Consciousness is the first step to change. 

3rd – Be compassionate, toward yourself and others. You know I love this statement … research shows … compassion is a bigger driver of successful change than castigation.

However, many of us were taught to use shame and punishment to impact someone’s (including our own) behaviors. 

The reality is, it just doesn’t work as well as kindness and love

Find that place of feeling content and appreciated for what you have accomplished thus far, even if you feel that’s only .1% of your life. It’s from this place of feeling cherished that you will make the most progress toward your goals. 

As we turn the corner on another year, enjoy your day, your people, and whatever activities you  have planned to being the new year. 

Here’s to a healthier you in 2022! 

3 Ways to Bring Joy to Your Fitness. Fitness is a Feeling.

What does it mean to be fit? For many of us we automatically imagine particular body weight, maybe a blood pressure, or how our body responds to sugar. Lots of us go right to what we look like or how physical systems work.

But in reality how fit we really are is a feeling. Yes the physical body is an important part of tracking fitness, but how fit we feel is about a feeling.

Photo Credit: Photo by Andreea Boncota on Unsplash

Article By: Stacy Reuille-Dupont, PhD, LAC, CPFT, CNC

Healthy looks different on every body. There are a number of markers we can use to measure somebody’s fitness. These markers help us see where the physical body is and what the physical body is doing. But the physical body is the past, it is what has happened to us. It is what we have done to ourselves in the past.

The physical body shows us where our habits have been. Maybe we’ve been overeating for a while or sitting on the couch watching a lot of TV. We might be having aches and pains from a lack of movement or high inflammation due to the food we choose to consume (Yanmei, Zhihua, Li, et. al, 2021).These habit patterns show up in the physical body and cloud our mental body.

Real fitness starts in our minds (LINK HERE). It is a goal we set. It is a mindset long before it is ever a physical reality. If we truly want to be fit we must work on feeling fit first.

Here’s what feeling fit really looks like. A fit person feels strong, capable, and able. They know they can lift a particular amount, can walk or run far enough, can successfully address difficult conversations, hold and set boundaries, and they are always working to get a better PR goal whether that be in the gym, boardroom, or their household. They know they are strong enough to tackle challenges and accomplish goals they’ve set for themselves.

A fit person understands balance. It is not about going harder, longer, faster all the time. There is no fitness if you overtrain. You may have a good physique on the outside but your body will be breaking down on the inside. 

This condition will not allow the body to push to the highest levels. Eventually you will have to stop training. Without appropriate recovery body tissues will not be able to maintain high levels of achievement overtime. There goes the vanity. Without continuous workouts you cannot maintain sculpted body parts. You need balance to continue to pursue your workouts and mental A game. 

To truly be fit you must have balance in your routines. You must have time for rest, work, and time for play. If you do not have the right balance of work you will be doing the wrong exercises at the wrong intensities with the wrong timing. On one hand just moving is good, but if you truly want to be fit there’s a method to the madness. 

$30 Off Your 1st Order

If you do not schedule time for play, workouts get pretty bland and boring fast. The same routine day in and day out becomes lackluster and uninteresting. When this happens your workout will suffer because a focused and engaged mentality is missing.

To truly be a fit person you must also feel creative. It takes creativity to show up day after day doing what is needed to create fitness levels you want. It takes creativity to continue to adapt your goals, pivot your failures, and succeed. If you do not feel creative you might need to hire a coach (ADD LINK) to help you maintain an inspired perspective. If you are living uninspired it won’t take long for you to quit whatever it is you are trying to build. 

To truly live well we must live inspired. Being inspired brings us to the place of motivation and motivation brings us to goal completion (Thrash, Oleynick, & Maruskin, 2014). Without motivation it’s hard to get out of bed day after day, do the same routines over and over, slowly making changes needed to truly impact our physical fitness.

So if you want to be fit, you must first feel it. You must feel strong, balanced, and creative in your whole being. Fitness is a feeling first then it becomes reality in our physical form. 

Today take stock of your current fitness goals, routines, and mental game. Determine if you are setting up your training priorities from a place of feeling full and joyful or a place of constriction and rigidity. 

If it’s the latter it’s time to revamp your plan. Get back to feeling your commitment to your fitness and create your health from the inside out.

References:

Thrash, Moldovan, E. G., Oleynick, V. C., & Maruskin, L. A. (2014). The Psychology of Inspiration. Social and Personality Psychology Compass, 8(9), 495–510. https://doi.org/10.1111/spc3.12127

Yanmei Ma, Zhihua Yin, Li Li, Bingni Chen, Hanying Dai, Dandan Wu, Junxiao Cong, liang Ye, Chenghui Liao, Lingyun Li, Zhizhong Ye, Zhong Huang. (2021). Food antigens exacerbate intestinal damage and inflammation following the disruption of the mucosal barrier, International Immunopharmacology, Volume 96(107670), ISSN 1567-5769, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.intimp.2021.107670.


Stacy Reuille-Dupont, PhD, LAC, CPFT, CNC, licensed psychologist, addiction counselor, personal trainer and nutrition coach. She’s passionate about helping people create a vibrant life using psychology and physiology. With over 25 years coaching people to be their best, she understands how to find adventure and bliss with balance. Book a FREE 15 minute consultation at www.studiob.life or join her monthly Q&A group at www.stacyreuille.com 

How You Can Heal Your Stomach Naturally

Unfortunately, there are plenty of digestive ailments that can affect our lives. They can make eating painful and difficult and add complications to our lives that we just don’t need. If you are looking to improve your digestive health, here is what you need to know to do so naturally.

Guest Post by: Justin Bennett of HealthyFit.Info

Image Courtesy of Pixabay.com

Get to Know Your Gut

Our digestive tract is often called the second brain of the body. It produces the chemicals we need to feel happy but also is imperative to our immune system’s functionality. Our guts are full of helpful bacteria, such as Lactobacillus, Bifidobacterium, Akkermansia, as well as other probiotics. These help us digest our food but also keep our bodies healthy. 

When the levels of healthy bacteria diminish, we can experience negative side effects, such as constipation or diarrhea. You may have difficulty processing food, become bloated, or even have heartburn. These changes in gut flora can lead to a fluctuation in weight, fatigue or loss of sleep, skin conditions, and even autoimmune deficiencies. Understanding the need for probiotics, and knowing what you can do to improve your gut health, can cause other areas of your health to dramatically improve.

Adjust Your Diet

You can start the process of healing your digestive tract with your diet. The most basic tenet of a good diet is to eat unprocessed, natural foods. You want meals that have healthy fats, such as avocados, nuts, and salmon, and that offer large doses of fiber to keep your insides clean. 

Cruciferous veggies and healthy carbs, like sweet potatoes and squash, are excellent for our digestive strength. Add some fermentation to your day as well. Fermented foods are rich in naturally occurring probiotics, which can bolster our gut and our immune system. Don’t stop there. Things like apple cider vinegar have something called hydrochloric acid, which helps us process difficult-to-digest foods, like fats and protein. Unsweetened yogurt is also good for us. If you are getting dairy-free versions, make sure they have live cultures added to them.

Find the Right Exercise

You may notice that when you exercise, you find some of your digestive ailments alleviated, yet there are ways to make sure the workouts you choose are the best possible option for digestion. Yoga is one particularly effective means of exercising your digestive ills away. Many poses gently compress your internal organs, which can help move things along in a natural, calm way. You also stretch your body out, elongating your spine and intestines, which can help digestion. Regular exercise can strengthen your muscles, especially your abdominals, which may aid in your digestive health. Moderate aerobics can increase circulation, which helps blood get to your gut.

If you’re planning on starting a yoga practice, you can do so right from home. Create a dedicated space for practicing—a spare bedroom or rarely used dining room is ideal. Make sure you remove any possible distractions and introduce some calming elements like indoor plants. Open any curtains or shades to allow as much natural light into the room as possible. If dirty windows are preventing light from entering this space, you can read reviews on window washing services near you to find capable local window cleaners. Expect to pay between $2 and $7 per glass pane. 

Things to Avoid

There are plenty of things we shouldn’t do (or eat) if we want to keep our gut healthy. Foods high in lectin should be avoided, as lectin can stick to our intestine and make it difficult to process nutrients. This can lead to inflammation, something that needs to be avoided to heal our gut. It’s also wise to avoid foods that are heavily laden in fat or foods that have been fried. These can cause chaos in our intestines and stomach, leading to aggravated IBS, acid reflux, or heartburn. Spicy foods can irritate the GI tract, so no matter how much you love hot food, it’s time to cut back. 

You may need to reduce or eliminate alcohol consumption. It can cause inflammation in the gut, and also block our bodies from absorbing nutrients. It may even lead to diarrhea or stomach cramps. You may also want to cut back on how many berries you eat. Tiny seeds can get stuck in our stomachs or intestines and cause many problems, such as infection.

It may seem like a giant overhaul, but remember, you don’t have to make all of these changes overnight. Living a healthy lifestyle will come from making small, gradual changes over time. Setting goals such as eating a mindful diet, doing the right gentle exercises, and knowing what you should avoid are great places to start. Soon, you may find yourself feeling better than you ever have.

Free Yourself to Improve Your Life By Cutting Out These Habits

There is no shortage of literature that revolves around actions you can take to improve your life. But what if sometimes we need to be focusing on the habits and mindsets that we should eliminate? By stopping negative actions we have … read more

Guest Post by: Dorothy Watson of the Mental Wellness Center

Image via Unsplash

… become accustomed to, we can free ourselves to make meaningful strides toward health, wellness, and joy. Stacy Reuille-Dupont, Ph.D. has listed some practical things that you can stop doing today so that you can make room for a better you!

Staying at an Unfulfilling Job

First of all, you spend a lot of your life at work. So, if you hate your job, chances are it is having a negative impact on your life. Whether your job is boring, not accommodating your talents or desires, or simply too stressful, make a change now. 

These days, you can get a college degree while still balancing the other responsibilities in your life. Taking online courses will help you boost your career prospects and give you the flexibility you need to focus on family, work, and other commitments. For instance, pursuing a bachelor of science in business, information technology, or health administration could open up all kinds of opportunities for your future. Just make sure that any online school you consider is accredited and offers competitive tuition costs. 

Waiting to Get Started

Too many people wait to make meaningful changes in their lives until there is no longer an opportunity to make them. Don’t wait for your situation or circumstances to be perfect before you change your career, try a new hobby, start a family, or make other moves. If you wait for the stars to align, you may find yourself looking back at missed opportunities. 

Skipping Over Your Own Needs

Did you know that you could be a great parent, family member, friend, and citizen without living to please others? Taking care of your needs does not make you selfish. Each of us has a unique personality and chemical makeup, which means that none of us have the same exact needs. Make time to relax, recharge, and navigate any mental, emotional, and physical health issues that are keeping you from reaching your goals.

Not Taking Care of Your Health     

This bad habit sort of falls in line with the previous one. You must carve out time in your daily schedule to foster your mental, emotional, and physical health. Make sure you are exercising at least five days a week and eating a nutritious, balanced diet. Also, come up with a bedtime routine that helps you get at least seven hours of sleep each night. There are strong links between our psychology and physiology, and making simple strides toward better exercise, eating, and sleeping routines can do wonders for all-around health. 

Dwelling on the Past or Future

One of the hardest things to do in life is to embrace the present. Each of us has made mistakes and experienced moments in the past which we wish would have gone differently. However, other than learning lessons, it does no good to dwell on the past. And at the same time, you shouldn’t try to predict the outcomes of the future. If you want to dream about what’s to come, focus on envisioning your goals rather than fantasizing about unrealistic circumstances.

Neglecting to Get Help

If you live with depression, anxiety, ADHD, or any other mental health issues, you are not alone. There are many more people throughout the world that deal with similar conditions. There are so many, in fact, that there are professionals who dedicate their life’s work to helping individuals navigate such issues. Don’t be afraid of reaching out for help. If you are ready to transform your life and receive the guidance you need for navigating the challenges ahead, connect with a mental health professional like Stacy Reuille-Dupont today!

Sometimes, self-improvement is being proactive about eliminating harmful behaviors or thoughts. If you relate to any of the habits above, start making the changes you need to make right now. And always be open to other ways you can develop healthy habits and mindsets that will keep you on track to becoming a better you!

Would you like to read more helpful content or learn about how Studio B is helping our clients through a wide array of physical and mental health issues? Visit stacyrd.com today!

4 Steps to Improving Your Mental Health Through Better Sleep

When we don’t get enough quality sleep, most of us worry primarily about how tired we’ll feel the next day. It’s only when it becomes an ongoing, chronic issue that some of us start to realize the mental impact of poor sleep. It’s not just that we feel low, stressed, or unfocused: Research has shown that sleep deprivation could be a cause of certain psychological disorders as well as a symptom of it. Luckily, a few simple changes to your sleep habits and environment can be enough to improve your quality of sleep, and in turn ensure your mental well-being. 

Guest Post by: Stephanie Haywood from MyLifeBoost.com

Photo Credit: Photo via Unsplash.

When we don’t get enough quality sleep, most of us worry primarily about how tired we’ll feel the next day. It’s only when it becomes an ongoing, chronic issue that some of us start to realize the mental impact of poor sleep. It’s not just that we feel low, stressed, or unfocused: Research has shown that sleep deprivation could be a cause of certain psychological disorders as well as a symptom of it. Luckily, a few simple changes to your sleep habits and environment can be enough to improve your quality of sleep, and in turn ensure your mental well-being. 

Dr. Stacy can help you create a personalized mental map to help you reach your health and fitness goals. Schedule an appointment today!

Make Your Bed as Comfortable as Possible

Start with the obvious. If you want to sleep well, you need to make sure your bed is perfectly suited for it. If you haven’t switched mattresses in a while, you may want to invest in one of the new “bed in a box” models. Next, focus on your pillows. According to Good Housekeeping, the key to a good pillow is providing a neutral alignment with your spine. In general, this means side sleepers need thicker, firmer pillows, and stomach sleepers will need thinner pillows. 

Assess Your Environment

Your room should be geared toward restful sleep. If there’s too much light, try installing blackout curtains. Noisy city dwellers could benefit from a white noise machine. Too warm at night? Open your windows or get a fan.

If you get too warm or too cold during the night, you may want to invest in a fan or portable heater. Alternatively, if you fear expensive electric bills, something as simple as opening the window or buying warmer pajamas can make a world of difference. 

Last but not least, make sure that you keep your bedroom organized. Disorganization can lead to you experiencing feelings of anxiety, which can very easily disrupt your sleep. In addition to keeping your room clutter-free, make sure you take the time to clean your bedroom doors and windows. Every little bit can make the space more relaxing.

Create a Relaxing Bedtime Ritual

If you tend to lie awake in bed going over the day’s problems, your problem has less to do with your environment and more to do with the state of mind you are in when you go to bed. In order to prepare your mind for sleep, create a bedtime ritual that relaxes you and winds you down. 

You could, for example, have a soothing herbal tea with sleep-inducing properties, such as chamomile, passionflower, lavender, lemongrass, or valerian root. You could also take a long hot bath or shower or read a few pages of a book. A few stretches can also be extremely effective, and they have the added bonus of soothing sore or tense muscles. You can do knee-to-chest stretches for lower back pains, lunges for sore glutes, and child’s pose for releasing neck tension. 

Once you’re in bed, meditation can be an extremely effective way to stop spiraling thoughts. Popular meditation app Headspace has an entire section dedicated to sleep, including guided meditations as well as relaxing sounds and music. If guided meditation isn’t your thing, try taking some deep breaths to clear your head and relax your body. 

Get Moving

Your quality of sleep is not just linked to your bedtime habits. What you do throughout the rest of the day also matters. The best example of this is exercise. In itself, exercise is excellent for both your physical and mental health. However, regular exercise is also linked to good sleep, with several studies showing that people who work out tend to sleep better.

It doesn’t matter when you work out, and it doesn’t even have to be intense exercise. As long as you do it regularly, you will likely see an improvement in your quality of sleep within a few weeks. 

Every night, our minds and bodies have the opportunity to rest, reset, and process the day’s events. If your environment and habits aren’t geared to allow this, it is going to be a lot more difficult for you to get the sleep you need to feel mentally well. Start by identifying what your barriers to sleep are, and then address each one individually until you have perfected your sleep routine. Your mind will thank you.