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Stress in the Midst of Rest

In the midst of this mandated rest do you find yourself feeling stressed at all?

Perhaps you feel stress about the virus, not being able to go and do as you would like, finances, moving forward, being restless…

After about a week of not sleeping well, I decided it was time to take a look at my own stress. And I didn’t like what I found. See, I’m one of those people that my brain tries to hide the stress from me so I actually don’t “feel” it until I get physical symptoms – like not being able to sleep.

I have not allowed myself a period of rest. I have continued to push and do and be all the things when perhaps God was calling me to rest too. To take advantage of this mandated rest period – 40 days to be exact (Check out all the events in the Bible that were 40 days long!)

So, why do we find ourselves stressed when we are called (or mandated) to rest?

My first thought is guilt. I feel guilty when I’m resting. This person and that person are working and I should be too. Who am I to rest when they are giving it their all?

Another idea is perhaps lack of control. When I can’t control outward circumstances I tend to up my control on internal circumstances. Meaning, I try to control the things I can – and like a tyrant sometimes too. :/ And that often leads to massive to-do lists (Mine today had 29 things on it. Sigh.). And overworking too, so I don’t have to think about what I can’t control.

Isaiah 28:12 says, “God has told his people, “Here is a place of rest; let the weary rest here. This is a place of quiet rest.” But they would not listen.” (NLT)

Yeah. That’s me. Sigh again.

Jesus says, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.” (Matthew 11:28 NLT)

As I sit and type this it sounds so refreshing in my exhausted state. I am going to seek to rest in the shadow of the Almighty. Wanna join me?

Fear is a Belief

Fear is a belief that something is going to get you and there’s nothing you can do about it.

Do you ever get “sick to your stomach” or “feel anxiety” or “you can’t eat because things are just too upsetting?” Physical symptoms can be directly related to what we think or feel. To what we believe to be true in that moment. Basically, physical symptoms can manifest because of a belief.

So, what are you believing?

Are you thinking, “The Rona’s gonna get me too!” or “This world is so out of control. I better hide from everything!” or perhaps, “I am so afraid.”

Romans 8:31 says, “If God is for us, who can ever be against us?” (NLT)

That is also a belief.

You can put your trust in fear. Or you can put your trust in God. You can’t choose both.

Now, I’m not saying we can’t get concerned and take precautions to help keep us safe. We don’t just throw willie-nillie to the wind though. The difference is we don’t get consumed by the what-ifs and the what-nows. We choose to trust in the one who created every single thing and who has the power to raise the dead. The power to stop a pandemic. The power to provide in the midst of impossible circumstances. AND, I can guarantee your physical health will be much improved or will decline by what you choose to believe.

“Do not fear bad news. Confidently trust in the Lord to care for you.”

-Paraphrased from Psalm 112:7

God’s got this y’all. Choose to believe.

Need a Bit of Accountability?!?!

Sometimes, when life throws curve balls like…

  • a pandemic
  • getting sick
  • moving
  • loss of a job or getting a job…

it can be really hard to stay on track. Staying on track with our spiritual, mental, and physical health.

And yet, God provides for us each and every day exactly what we need to stay in communion with Him and remain healthy. So, why do so many of us struggle?!?! Including myself!

Well, we let ourselves, others, or circumstances get in the way. We put our priorities in places and perhaps they should be elsewhere. So, what are we to do?

Well, first of all, we seek the Father and His pleasing and perfect will. We ask, seek, and knock and keep asking, seeking, and knocking until He lays out His perfect plan for us. And then, perhaps, we get some earthly accountability. Somebody to help us stay on track and help us keep our focus on Christ – even in the midst of the curve balls of life.

I created a group to help us do just that. I am beginning a weekly coaching program that requires NO COMMITMENT!  Yup, that’s right.  You choose week by week if you want to join us!  It’s an accountability group to help us Stay Sane and Stay Fit!  That’s spiritually, mentally, & physically fit.  

And it’s super AFFORDABLE!  First of all, your first week is free!  Then after that it’s only $25 per week!  And if you choose to sign up for four weeks at a time then it’s only $20 per week!  You can skip weeks or join or cancel anytime!
To learn more CLICK HERE

Or you can email me at needahealthcoach@gmail.com to learn more!

What I Learned About Habits from Driving in Japan

My husband and I recently returned from a two-week trip to Japan. It was a lovely time full of adventure and learning.

While there we got a rental car in a few of the places we stayed. So, here’s how Japanese cars are set up:

  • The driver sits on the right side of the car
  • The blinker is on the right side of the steering wheel
  • The windshield wipers are on the left side of the steering wheel
  • Cars drive on the left side of the road

Driving on the opposite side of the road that we were used to was a little more challenging than I anticipated. And there was some spatial differences I had to figure out while driving from the right side of the car.

Japanese drivers are very courteous and respectful- like their culture. They all use their blinkers and hardly anyone ever blows their horn.

With the blinker on the opposite side of the steering wheel that we were used to, our windshield wipers were turned on nearly every time we made a turn. Haha!!! It was really hard to retrain my brain. And I realized that if I wasn’t constantly thinking about my habits while driving then I was going to end up on the wrong side of the road and using my windshield wipers when they weren’t needed.

Then, when we arrived home, I was reaching on the right side of the steering wheel to turn on the blinker. So, only after a few weeks my habits had switched to Japanese cars and driving.

What I realized from this experience is that when we desire to change habits we must be conscious of our choices 100% of the time. We must be in the present moment. Not functioning on auto-pilot. And even when we are focused and present, our old-time ingrained habits still pop up. And like the windshield wipers coming on, we can be reminded, “Oh yeah! I’m doing this different thing now.”

So, being mindful is of upmost importance. And, when we slip up, laughter, forgiveness, and a positive resolve will get us back on track.

Need help or guidance in changing or shifting your own habits? Email me here!

Healthy Relationships

Relationships are hard.

We are human. And humans are not perfect.

We say things we shouldn’t, do things that make others mad, and are forgetful. We hurt those closest to us. Sometimes without even being aware.

So, how do we have close relationships – whether that’s with friends, family, or our spouse – and keep them healthy?

Well, I think there are a zillion self help books out there about relationships. But let’s take a look at the Bible to see what God says about it.

Colossians 3:13 says, “Be tolerant with one another and forgive one another whenever any of you has a complaint against someone else. You must forgive one another just as the Lord has forgiven you.” (GNT)

Ephesians 4:2 says, “Be completely humble and gentle, be patient, bearing with one another in love.” (NIV)

Colossians 3:12 says, “Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience.” (NIV)

John 13:34 says, “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.” (NIV)

I think we could find hundreds of verses that instruct us on how to be in relationship with others. But, what does all this mean? How can we put this into practical terms?

Well, let’s look at a few examples:

Forgive. When a friend forgets your birthday. When your spouse comes home late and forgot to call. When your kid gets on your ever-lovin’ last nerve. Forgive.

Be patient. When your friend is late for a lunch date. When your husband isn’t giving you the attention you desire. When your kids just can’t get that homework.

Be compassionate. When your friend has had a hard day. When your husband is sick. When your kid had their heart broken.

Love. When your friend is lonely. When your husband craves your attention. When your kid is growing so fast.

Obviously, these are only a few examples of how we can help our relationships be healthier. What would you add to this list?

Loving Yourself in the Midst of Stress

Stress comes and stress goes.

How we handle it and what we do with it greatly affects our physical, mental, and spiritual health. There has been much research on what happens to our bodies under stress. Many studies confirm what I found to be true for myself: When we don’t deal with stress in a healthy way and stuff it down our bodies hold on to it until we end up having physical symptoms. That could be something like chronic illnesses, pain, even diseases like cancer, digestive diseases, fibromyalgia, etc.

So, what can you do to help love yourself in the midst of stress (a.k.a – take care of yourself)? Here’s my top 5 suggestions:

  1. Pray – Draw close to God and He will draw close to you. When you take time out of your day in quietness with God you will automatically turn down the stress response. Plus, God can help if you ask Him too!
  2. Forgive – Often when we’re stressed we want to blame others. I invite for you to offer forgiveness in a time when anger or frustration would normally come out instead.
  3. Take time for yourself – Maybe even just a few minutes here or there breathing, praying, or whatever to help calm the central nervous system. Fill your cup!
  4. Sleep and exercise – Yes, this is taking care of yourself! Getting enough sleep and exercise is super important when we’re stressed. When we’re tired and our bodies don’t get the movement they crave we are more likely to be grouchy and snap.
  5. Relax with family or friends – Research shows that spending time with those we love helps relieve stress. Laughter is the best medicine!

What is your go-to when you are stressed? How do you manage it?

Top 5 Tips for Staying on Track

In the New Year we can get all excited about starting new habits, feeling happier, making choices that help us…

And we can easily fall off track. So, whether you made a New Year’s Resolution or just have a goal you’re reaching toward, here are my top five tips for staying on track.

1. Clear the Clutter

When reaching toward a goal – no matter what it is – you have to go about it systematically. Otherwise, you’ll probably find yourself back at square one pretty quickly. The first thing to do in any habit change or goal is to clear out the clutter. This gives you space for moving into the new thing. You can’t bring in a brand new couch if the old one is still there. It won’t work.

Clearing the clutter could mean removing physical stuff, clearing time on your calendar, removing old thought patterns, or even ridding yourself of destructive relationships. What do you need to let go of in order to move forward?

2.Make a Plan

You’ve probably have heard me say the quote by Benjamin Franklin that says,

“If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail.”

This is soooo true when we have goals of any kind – whether that’s to get healthier, lose weight, go to church more, or simply wear socks that match. Whatever it is it takes a plan to be successful.

3. Tell Someone Your Goal and Plan

Telling someone automatically gives you a sense of accountability. And when you tell someone it takes it out of your head and makes it real. This is really happening. I’m going to do this.

4. Get Accountability

Having someone hold you accountable can mean the difference between staying on track and possibly not even getting started. Or if you do get started, it’s a lot harder to follow through.

Accountability can come in the form of you and a friend working on a goal together, a loved one checking in on you regularly, or even a coach to guide you and cheer you on every step of the way.

5. Celebrate Your Successes

It’s so important to acknowledge the hard work you’re doing along the way. Even the small things! This comforts your brain that good things are happening even though changes are taking place (and changes usually freak our brains out). So, celebrate!

Maybe treat yourself to a spa treatment, go for a walk in the woods, call a friend, take a bubble bath, get a puppy! Whatever feels like celebration to you!

There are so many other tips I could give you to help you stay on track! If you want to know more, let me know!

A New Take on New Year’s Resolutions

Are you tired of making New Year’s Resolutions only to fall off track or possibly never even get started?

Well, I stopped making New Year’s Resolutions years ago. Here’s why and here’s what I do instead…

Making plans is important. Having goals is important. But if we don’t do it in a systematic way, then we will always fall off track. Every. Single. Time.

So, instead of making New Year’s Resolutions I choose a word of the year.

My word of the year is usually chosen for me by God. I pray about it, and He usually lays a word on my heart of something I will need to focus on that year. And as I look back, my words have always been something I’ve needed to keep in mind as the events of that year unfold. It’s really cool to see God work through a single word in my life for an entire year.

So, what’s a good word of the year? Well, that’s between you and God. But here are a few that I’ve had in the past:

  • love
  • joy
  • peace
  • humble servant
  • courage

And, what’s my word for this year? Well, God placed on my heart the word…

Obedience.

Do you have a word of the year? If so, what’s your word?