Re-Balance

A year ago I wrote a post called Balance. In it I offered productive solutions to care for mind, body, and soul. During this last year, I've attempted to follow my own recommendations. I’ve been incorporating yoga into my exercise, practicing meditation, and trying to sort out which social engagements I should pursue.

And during this last year I've been failing miserably.

Failing miserably - and learning how to truly re-balance my life. Because, you see, my life is so wonderfully full I don't have time to do all of the things I want to do. So today, rather than add more to your balance, today I'm going to ask you to take something away.

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The Common Denominator

I'm often asked the question of why I became a dietitian and my response is always the same: I love food!

However, my response is often mistaken to mean that I love to eat food. Which I do - but there is so much more to it than that. I love the story, the culture, the history of food. What I love most is food is the common denominator between people.

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The Thankful Game

At a conference I attended this summer, a keynote speaker gave a talk about thankfulness. She referred to a study which found people who meditate on five specific things per day they are grateful for are 25% happier. I'm not exactly sure how happiness is measured (although it's explained in the full text), but I can tell you from personal experience that focusing on the good happening around me rather than the negative changes my perspective.

So I came home from the conference and excitedly told Patrick about this new piece of information I learned and thus was born The Thankful Game.

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Dream Big & Shop Small

This year I'm participating for the first-time-ever as a seller next week on Small Business Saturday. If you haven't heard of it, this is the holiday squeezed in between Black Friday and Cyber Monday. It's a time for you, the Almighty Consumer, to support me, the tiny, hobby-like wannabe entrepreneur.

In a world of cut-throat capitalism, why would I put a plug in for small business? If you can't make it, get out of the market, right?

But if you've ever played (and lost) the game Monopoly, you might understand why putting all the power (i.e. money) in a few huge companies is a rather short-sighted pleasure. So here's how and why I hope you shop small this post-Thanksgiving season.

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Wanderlust

I arrived home a few weeks ago from an almost-two-week vacay in Europe. Not really a vacation; as my brother would say, I took a trip not a vacation. A vacation is when you go lay on a beach somewhere and relax. We did anything BUT relax on this trip.

I have to be crafty when it comes to finances to make travel + life fit together. This was my third time to Europe, but my first time to travel while having had a "grown-up" job for more than five years. Which means I've figured out how to travel cheap.

I'm not an expert by any means, but here's how I make travel work for me...

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Vignettes of Community

Where I sit typing in this busy coffee shop I watch lives briefly intersect. Coming, going, coming; humans are social creatures, but sometimes we can be so isolated. The more people I encounter the more evident it becomes that people need people.

I am a product of my community. I have been either incredibly lucky or incredibly blessed to know the people I do.

Let me share a little how my community has touched me.

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I Just PR'd a Little

Today (for the second time in my life) I did something I never-ever-ever thought I could do. Today I ran my second half marathon.

Today I want to talk empowerment.

The idea of empowerment can be scary. We hear all the time how we should empower women or empower those in poverty to better themselves.

But you know what? I don't think it's just women. Or adolescents. Or low-socioeconomic status folks. Or people with anxiety. I think it's everybody. I think we all struggle with believing we can be (and pursuing) the best we can be.

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"Off" Days

By nature, I'm a pretty happy person. I feel really lucky for that. I don't know if it's the wiring of my brain, how I've worked to train myself to see the good in all situations, or my special set of hormones that makes me who I am, but I'm thankful that most days I am genuinely happy.

But to be very honest, I have bad days, too.

I am guessing that I'm not alone, that sometimes you have "off" days, too. I don't have this figured out by any stretch of the imagination, but I want to share with you how I handle these days. They're inevitable. Sometimes it's stress, sometimes it's a life event that triggers them. They will pass, but they will be back, too.

Here's what I do...

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