Is your Path Clear?

images (3)

Quite often we set upon a journey without making an effort to plan it first.

We rush through starting this journey because we are so  excited about the idea of reaching our destination and getting all the goodies it entails.

The euphoria blinds our eyes. Making us see only what we imagine will be.

Not seeing exactly what lie ahead.

In the moment of this excitement we forget that we need to clear this path first. We need to gather the survival tools which might be needed in case the weather changes. We need a slasher to clear the path covered by thorny bushes which might prick our legs. We need a coat in case the weather suddenly change and we start shivering from cold.

We need to be emotionally and physically strong.

Every day we walk on this path we need to see clearly what is in front of us.

We also need to see what is behind too. This will help us when things don’t work out as we expected, and we need to go back. Go back to take a new route. Take new direction. Go back up to the point where we are comfortable to restart our journey.

So we have to keep the path clean. We have to look after our body in order to have a clear mind. A clear mind which can weather all storms. A mind which can wait patiently while the storm passes. A mind which knows when to wait. A mind which learns to listen to the heart while waiting. A mind which knows that this waiting is not for ever.

This moment is a valuable time for learning and preparing for new things to come.

Your mind will eventually know when the waiting is over and tell you that this is the right time is right to strike.

Yes, the time to take action and make things happen.

This is when we really know that:

“Good luck is preparation meeting Opportunity!”

How I Controlled Acid Reflux Naturally:

young-man-strong-stomach-painstomach-pain-11021041

Anyone who has experienced an acid reflux will understand how annoying this problem can be.

A condition called hiatal hernia causes the acid to come out of your stomach instead of remaining where it is designed to be confined to. Under normal condition, after food passes into your stomach, a mascular valve closes, preventing food or acid moving back up. Acid reflux occurs when this valve relaxes inappropriately, allowing acid from stomach to flow (reflux) backwards into your mouth.

Usually it’s an unpleasant acidic taste which rises from the throat to the mouth , lingering on,  making food in the mouth taste weird. Left untreated, this problem can cause  a lot of health issues and generally make you feel miserable.

Below are few strategies which can keep acid reflux under control:

– Modifying your diet

Avoid large amounts of processed and sugary foods. Instead, eat lots of vegetables, non-acidic fruits and wholemeal grains. Consuming enough raw food(salads and fruits) will increase your body’s natural production of stomach acid. These foods also create good bacteria which eliminates the bad bacteria which caused acid reflux in the first place.

– Eliminates food that triggers this condition 

This can be caffeine, alchohol or nicotine products

– Drink plenty of water

We loose about 700ml of water from our bodies every day through skin and breathing. Another 100ml through faeces (i.e while food is processed in the big intestine), 1.5 litres as urine and 200ml in normal perspiration.

So, even living in a temperate climate your would require a 2.5 itres a day.

Water also neutralises the stomach when it produces too much acid.

– Implement an exercise routine

Physical exercise speeds up a sluggish body metabolism. It also improves your body’s immune system which is important to fight off different kinds of bacterial infections.

There are lots of convectional medicine which supposedly suppress or decrease the amount of acid in your stomach. More than often these just worsens the condition since they treat the symptons but not address the underlying cause. They can also cause terrible side effects.

Ultimately, the answer to control acid reflux is to restore the stomach’s natural balance and function. This is not only useful for good gut function, but it is also crucial for your long-term health.

Maintaining a good bowel flora, will help increase the stomach’s absorption of nutrients, aid in proper digestion and assimilation of food.

Disclaimer:

As always the advice on this article is for information purpose only.

It is not meant to replace a consultation with a health provider.

 

 

How to Overcome a Fear of House Spiders:

Spider 2Spiderspider 3Arachnophobia is a fear of spiders.

For most people just mentioning the word ‘spider’ or seeing one is enough to trigger a feeling of anxiety and hyperventilation. It is at this precise moment when logic goes out of the window and a person starts doing crazy things which most of the time cause unintended injury. Yes, we hear this all the time. Recently a certain mum leapt out of a moving car after seeing a spider, leaving a child inside the car. Anything could have happened there – maybe a collision with an oncoming car, the car could have hit a lamp post or even a pedestrian!

While this might seem a very irrational thing to do, we first need to understand the origin of phobias. What causes them? How does someone acquire them?

Usually they are due to a conditioned response after an encounter with a negative situation associated with spiders, and then it escalates to a fearful reaction to spiders. This could be something like a spider crawling on someone’s body or hearing weird stories about a spider killing someone.

The solution is not to show off this phobia like a badge whenever people talk about phobias. One needs to look for ways to overcome this phobia and learn how to react accordingly whenever they see these hairy creatures.

This could be:

  • Learning the positive aspects of spiders – knowing which types are harmful and which ones are not. For most spiders a bite is a defensive resort. Spiders are antisocial – they just want to be left alone.
  • Understanding that spiders protect human being by eliminating insects that could spread diseases around the house
  • Dispel myths about spiders. We often hear scare stories about spiders, but the ones found in the houses are usually harmless.A spider usually doesn’t attack humans on purpose. Depending on your reaction when you see it, it might try to defend itself. So, the key is not to panic and startle it but instead to try and keep calm and get rid of it accordingly
  • Understand that spiders have got their stake in the natural world we are all living.

Knowing that spiders help us with the housekeeping, so they shouldn’t be treated as public enemy number straight away.

Honestly speaking next time you hear someone gloating about having a phobia for spiders, make them aware that there are more important badges one can have but certainly not this one.

 

How to Detox your mind and Create a Progressive life:


Inspired womanthoughtful-woman-25157465

People talk about detoxifying their body, but rarely about their minds,yet it’s the mind which plays a bigger part in their personal and professional growth. It is the mind which can make you feel anxious and fearful about your life and future.

Over the last six months I have experienced lots of changes in my personal and professional life. These changes have given me an opportunity to re-think where my life was heading. They have given me a clear vision on the direction I would like my life to take. They have given me hope and courage to make things happen.

Below, are the things which made this process do-able:

  • I reviewed what I ate by ensuring that I ate a balanced diet (this includ daily intake of fruits). The results made my energy levels shoot up and the feeling of constant tiredness stopped.

 

  • I created a routine of going to bed early. It was difficult at first as my body was not used to this habit. Sometimes I would spend more than 30 minutes awake in bed before I nodded off to sleep. But with perseverance, after few days I started getting used to it. As a result, I would wake up in the morning with a much clearer head. This enabled me to review my life and figure out areas which needed to fixing; I started reviewing my relationship with my family, friends and colleagues at work and look for ways to make these relationships better.

 

  • I started controlling the way I think about things. Any time my mind would wonder into negativity, I would stop those thoughts on track and bring back my trail of thoughts by putting in some positive thoughts. This was done through reading inspirational quotes or educational books. I finally took charge of what went into my head and made a choice to always be positive about things and never to hold grudges on people.

 

  • I started surrounding myself with positive people. Progressive people who won’t drain my mind and feed it with negativity. As we all know, the people you surround yourself with can either help you to progress to where you want to reach or drain you down to their level. As once said by a famous person, ‘Our ability to survive, to be calm, to even be happy, to possibly be successful, stems entirely from the quality of the people we surround ourselves with’

 

What I have learned is, the power to progress and achieve our goals lies within ourselves.

This is our journey. Our choice. No one can do it for us.

After all, the old adage says, ‘Where the mind goes, the body will follow’

We need to create an action plan for our vision.

Now is the time to leap out in faith and make things happen!

 

 

 

The Best way to Eliminate Belly and Abdominal Fat:

2Physical exercise 1Physical exercise 3Physical exercise 5

For quite a long time I struggled to shift the weight around my waistline, which clung on my body like an ivy clinging about an oak. Suffice to say, I wasn’t successful on this exercise.

Any woman who has had children will understand what I mean. Yes, I have children.Two of them.I wasn’t successful in getting a flat tummy after my first one and by the time I had my second child, my tummy was visibly bigger.
I tried different diets but the fat around my waistline didn’t bulge.

Resigning into the whole thing, I decided that I am going to forget about diets and instead concentrate on eating healthily (plenty of fruits and vegetables), eat less junk food at the same time keeping an eye on my food portions.

I also started doing some simple physical exercises as shown above.

How I cope with Train Delays and Cancellations:

17wnkx3buy91ujpg

Yes, we’ve heard all possible reasons- buckled rails, dry leaves on the rail track, signal failures, driver shortages etc. Waiting for the next coming train can be boring and stressful.The wait feels longer than normal. Uncertainty magnifies the stress of waiting.

But, how do we cope with trains often failing to arrive due to these unpredictable delays and cancellations?

How do we accept the reasons for the delays and still keep our cool and sanity intact? A better understanding of the psychology of waiting can help make those inevitable delays that repeatedly creeps into our lives, more bearable.

I have learnt how to cope and to make use of my time during these situations. This is how I do;

Read a nice and interesting book

Book ignites imagination. It opens our minds to the new world. Yes, you can be engrossed in a nice story line or an educative book in such a way that you don’t feel a 20 min train delay.

– Listening to my favourite music or inspirational podcasts

This usually lifts up my spirits and puts me in a positive mood. It gives me a sense of perspective with an understanding that these delays are out of my control, so there is no point fretting much about it.

Writing

Writing clarifies your thoughts. It helps you think about what happened and likely to happen.

Writing makes you smarter – it forces you to search for new vocabulary and makes you write more.

Writing solves problems – it helps you in coming with solutions.By identifying your problems you decrease your stress because you now have a focus on what needs to be done.

The process of writing removes both mental and physical stress, giving you a sense of calmness.

Indeed, my long- hours weekday commute to work has given me a motivation to write an e-book. Yes, an e-book is coming your way very soon. I know some readers have asked me about this.

Back to you my dear readers;

– Do you have any issue which is bugging you, which you would like me write about?

– Is there an area you would  like me write about?

– What is your most burning question in life?

– What do you find most challenging or difficult to do in life?

Just drop me an email on mumsharingknowledge@gmail.com with the answers for the above questions.

How I overcame my Fear of Taking Cold Showers:

Turning the temperature to cold, I stared at the shower head for a good one minute. I hesitated, unsure whether what I was about to do will be worthwhile. Closing my eyes, I turned the shower on.

Ouch! I yelped and gave an almighty shriek. My heart was racing like it was about to jump out of my chest. I quickly turned the shower off.

Surely there must be an easier way, I thought while scrubbing my body with a soapy sponge……..

Ah, I was once told that one way of solving a big problem is to break it into small parts! This way it’s easier to tackle it while getting motivated in the process of doing small chunks, until the whole problem is resolved. Equipped with this unexpected wisdom, I turned the shower on to tepid warm, and rinsed my body. With an unaccomplished mission still burning inside my heart, I then turned on the shower to cold and let it splash my body.

Surprisingly there was no shriek or racing heart this time round. Could it be that my body was more prepared this time? Could it be that I wanted a cold shower so much that my mind overcame all the fear and feelings experienced before?Could it because my body responded better with this type of approach?

Anyway, within few seconds something rather strange suddenly happened;I felt this rush of heat engulfing my body – a sure proof that the blood inside my body was now flowing to my organs for protection, to keep them warm!

Research suggests that cold showers stimulates certain parts of brain which are associated with increased  body immunity, stress reduction and also areas responsible for fighting against depression or chronic fatigue syndrome. Proven as a natural way of increasing fertility, cold showers also improve blood circulation, reaching those difficult to reach areas. What a wonderful, affordable-to all way! No wonder James Brown called it a Wake-up Shower.

Having equipped with this small piece of wisdom, we now know that taking cold showers need not be a painful or unpleasant experience – we just need to do it the right way and we will reap the benefits associated with it.

lady-taking-shower-horizontal-view-53094050

 

 

Stomach: The Unsung Hero

How many times have we treated our stomach as a mere storage container where we can dump any stuff we feel like, yet we are surprised when it rebels because it can’t handle some of the stuff we’ve put in?Because we are so far from our food supplies, sometimes it is difficult to  know the processing stages, chemicals used for preserving or even the ingredients deliberately chosen by the manufacturers in order to please our palates.

Quite often our body rebels and rejects food that are difficult to digest or harmful, as a way of protecting our bodies.No one can deny the fact that since most people live a fast paced life, sometimes it is easy to indulge in bad habits. These include not chewing food properly, speed eating or gorging and bingeing on food.Not wanting to exclude myself from the guilty party, I sometime find myself telling my children to finish quickly what is on their plates so that they can catch the bus to school, start doing their homework or simply so that the eating process doesn’t take longer than necessary.
Currently, statistics show a sharp increase in digestive related health problems among teenagers. These problems range from irritable bowel syndrome, reflux, Crohn’s disease, peptic ulcers and obesity. Before running to the doctor, maybe we need to learn and understand how best we can establish a healthy relationship with our guts.Knowing the right food to eat and understanding what you are eating is the most important way to nurture your digestive system.Be curious. Be your own researcher . After all, if you treat your stomach well, it will serve you well. Your stomach calls all the shots whether you like it or not.
The first port of call is inside your mouth. The slower you chew, the lesser you eat. Have you ever experienced watching a horror or action film while eating? I can guarantee you that your hand-to-mouth action will suddenly increase to keep up with the film’s pace. This is definitely not good and seriously unhealthy.When you chew thoroughly the digestive system prepares for the incoming food thus producing digestive enzymes which help the body absorb nutrients. When food is not chewed properly, the enzymes can’t break down carbohydrates or digest fats hence make you feel sluggish and experience loss of energy. Food properly chewed food also doesn’t allow the gut to work efficiently because the valuable nutrients locked inside the food lumps may not be absorbed into the bloodstream. This can cause bloating, flatulence, constipation, stomach ache and cramps.Gulping down food also doesn’t give brain enough time to register and relay the message to your body when the stomach is full up.
The stomach function is often likened to a washing machine.Rolling over and mixing its contents. Overeating is like putting too many clothes in it.If you overfill the washing machine, how is it going to mix and distribute the washing powder evenly? How are the clothes going to get separated and cleaned thoroughly? The inside of the stomach is about the size of two hands cupped together.This is roughly a suggested amount of food which should be eaten .Filling it to the maximum unnecessarily stresses its functionality.
Next time your teen displays a sign of digestive disorder, let’s not be quick in letting them pop into their mouth the over the counter pills. Instead, we should encourage them to first listen to what their body is trying to communicate. Is the problem due to not chewing food properly? Have they been gulping the food down because they were busy watching an action film or playing games consoles? Have they been eating too much junk food and not including enough fibre in their diet?
As Rousseau famously said,”The weaker the body, the more imperious its demands; the stronger it is, the better it obeys”Our teens’ full potential in life can be achieved if proper stomach care is included in their small list of their normal daily routine. Remember, our stomach calls all the shots whether you like it or not.We can ignore it at our own peril.
Below is an educative video kindly permitted to use, by Dr J. McDougall (thank you Dr) :

The wide usage of ‘Smart Drugs’

 The use of brain – enhancing smart drugs is widespread and on the rise. Drugs such as Ritalin normally prescribed for attention deficit and hyperactivity disorders are being bought online and used by some students to improve concentration and make them pass the exams with good grades.

Some products which are regarded as safe, and labelled as ‘herbal’ or ‘natural’ have been marketed as mood-enhancers, but found to contain components of antidepressants.

Surprisingly, most students who use these drugs don’t come from the so called ‘druggy’ environment but from good, respectable background.

They often believe that their ordinary, healthy brains need a helping hand in order to get better exam results and achieve higher exam scores. The lure of popping a pill in their mouth and gain immediate focus, attentiveness and better memory retention is often too hard to resist. They want a pill that instantly gives them a razor sharp mind rather than follow conventional ways which I will discuss later on this article. Yes, they want a magic bullet!

teenager-decides-taking-pills-11161394

couple-friends-taking-drugs-horizontal-41519383

But the question is, do these so called ‘smart drugs’ really work? Can we just pop them into our mouth and not suffer the consequences?

Some actors claim that their ability to remember their lines increase when they take these drugs. Little is known what will happen later, under prolonged usage. People who are dependant on these drugs often suffer from headaches, dizziness, insomnia, serious mood swings, mental disorders, liver damage and even death.

Some even find it difficult to wean themselves off them later.

The use of these drugs for enhancement rather than treatment is often seen as unjustified, since they offer very minor improvement but the damage they cause can last very long. Often the damage is even harder to detect  earlier and when detected later on, the effects are usually impossible to reverse.

Do we really want our brains to be affected by these drugs in our quest for ‘smarter brains?’ Maybe not.

Luckily, there are safer methods which students  can use to achieve focus, alertness, memory boost and hence attain the grades they desperately want to achieve.

Memory, like muscular strength, requires you to ‘exercise it’. The more you work out your brain, the better you will be able to process and remember information. To strengthen your brain cells, you need to keep learning, developing new skills and constantly keeping yourself engaged.

Physical exercise also helps the brain to stay sharp by increasing oxygen to your brain, therefore improving memory retention. It also reduces stress hormones by balancing the brain chemicals, hence control your mood and increase the ‘fell good factor’ Exercises which keep your blood pumping such as aerobics and jogging will stimulate your brain and set you for better learning and good memory retention.

Not forgetting the old adage ‘We are what we eat’,  a good balanced diet full of fruits, vegetables and whole meal food is also crucial for your body.

With proper physical exercise and a good balanced diet, a good night sleep can easily be achieved, which is needed for rebooting our brain and enhance memory.

Honestly, what other safer methods to make us smart can there be, other than this?

Sleeping beauty

4681133028_9005810e05

holding his head

As the exam period is looming (GCSE, AS and A levels), most teens rush to do last minute revision and some who left it too late end up giving themselves few hours’ sleep at night. Research suggests that sleep is very crucial for human body just like eating or breathing.

Now, what does this so called sleep do to our bodies?

  • It boosts our memory.Our bodies consolidates what we have learnt during the day and reboots the brain to make it work again. Sleep seems to be a time when the mind can catch up on processing and organising things that have been stacked up while revising. Lack of sleep causes headaches, makes the head feel heavy and unable to recall what has been studied previously
  • Regulates hormones by stabilising body metabolism, hence control mood swings, cravings for junk food and decreased rational eating. Sleep deprivation messes up the hormones and make a person see life as doom and bleak. This explains why at this stage most teens feel stressed out, not capable of doing anything, starts self harming themselves and develop erratic behaviours
  • Keeps our immune system healthy enough to overcome infections such as colds and flu. Lack of sleep can cause other health related problems such as Type 2 diabetes and irregular heart rhythm (which explains why most teens get panic attacks and feel extremely anxious during exam period)
  • Sleep increases efficiency by improving our cognitive performances such as reaction time on handling different situations. This is very crucial because passing exams  requires nor only accuracy but also speed ( i.e the ability to finish the exams in a set time). Lack of sleep lowers general alertness and attention to detail – making a person prone to doing silly mistakes

What can we do help our bodies sleep better?

  • By eating healthy. Food which helps induce sleep include milk, turkey, bananas, avocados, pumpkin seeds and unprocessed wholemeal food such as brown bread

eating an apple girl eating a banana

 

  • By doing regular physical exercises. This helps in inducing sleep at night

group exercise
  Jogging

 

  • By avoiding heavy meal before going to bed as it puts a lot of pressure on digestive system by making the stomach rumble uncomfortably therefore keeping us awake
  • Switching off mobile phones or keeping them in another room before going to bed. This reduces the disruptions due to the incoming text messages(and the temptation to reply to them), non stop email alerts and also from the social media keen to keep our teens electronically engaged at night. Here parents can advice their teens  to leave the mobile phones downstairs or to the other rooms (i.e not bedrooms)

Any teen’s exam experience you would like to share with me? Please leave a comment below.