Showing posts with label Meditation. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Meditation. Show all posts

Essential Pregnancy Apps

These apps help you to connect with baby in the womb and stay on top of its development with great health tips too.



What to Expect: Pregnancy Tracker

The popular American pregnancy book's mobile app features a due-date calculator, weekly updates on your baby's development and your changing body, daily tips, photo album, due-date countdown and size estimates.
Read more about it here.
Cost: free. Get it on Android and iTunes.

BabyCenter: My Pregnancy Today

Track your baby's development with daily updates and health tips, illustrations and videos.
Read more about it here.
Cost: free. Get it on Google Play and iTunes.

Mediclinic baby: Pregnancy App

This app takes you through your pregnancy week by week, features a weight gain tracker, contraction timer, calendar for you to mark special dates, photo album for your bump pics and list of what to pack for hospital. It also offers more information about the Mediclinic baby programme.
Read more about it here.
Cost: free. Get it on iTunes
Moving city or country is not easy for anyone, but moving with children brings a whole host of considerations into play. Like your fragile glassware, children too need to be handled with care.

Tips to make a move smoother
Struggling socially in the beginning after a move is very common, but few children will have lasting effects. Children from families who have relocated revealed feelings of being conspicuous, feeling like the odd-one-out, literally or figuratively not speaking the language, having no idea of how to go about being accepted, and not being able to catch references or understand in-jokes. As a parent, knowing that these are common emotions that your child will experience can allow you to be more empathetic to his moods.

Talking the good and bad emotions through really assists with the settling process. Don’t be surprised by changes in your child’s behaviour while he is settling in. You can expect some regression, some acting out and some grieving. Children who become very withdrawn or aggressive for more than a few weeks should sound alarm bells. Try to talk through his feelings with him, but seek expert advice if you do not see his mood lifting.

The passage of time usually smoothes down the rough patches in a move, but what can you do to lessen the impact of a move on a child’s emotions and behaviour?

Here are some tips for making the move smoother :

Before the move:

1. Tell your child about the move as soon as possible. It gives him time to get used to the idea.
2. Sell him the benefits of the move in a way that he can relate to.
3. Reassure him by telling him what won’t change about the family life.
4. Make the move more concrete by showing pictures of where you are moving to. Older kids can go online and do the research themselves.
5. Say a positive goodbye to all the people and places your child loves. This will assist in achieving closure. It might also help to create a book for each child with photos and contact details of all the important people in their lives.

During the move:

1. Don’t treat the move as a time to discard all your child’s old toys as it will compound the feelings of loss. Take everything he wants even if it stays in the box once you arrive.
2. Let younger children get used to the process by packing their own belongings.
3. Pack a “must have” suitcase for each member of the family containing favourite possessions.

After the move:

1. Re-establish your family routines as quickly as possible.
2. Create a symbolic settling-in ritual like hanging up your wind chimes, or planting a familiar plant from home.
3. Make a game of getting to know the new neighbourhood (and establishing the boundaries of where children can and can’t go).
4. Put a huge effort into helping your kids form friendships by inviting other kids over to play.
5. Allow your child to experience the benefits of the new environment by doing things that he couldn’t do in the old one. Arrange outings and treats.
6. Help your child keep contact with the friends and family left behind by emailing lots of photos.
7. Focus on your relationship with your partner. A strong family nucleus is the source from which your children can draw strength.
Before, during and after the move, you will find yourself wanting to cover your child in bubble wrap to prevent him from experiencing the hard knocks of relocation. But what you might discover is the inner resilience that a move’s juxtaposition of gains and losses unearths in your child and yourself. “Here is the surprise,” admits Debi Hawkins of her move with her two children, “Without Jasmine and Monty I would have dissolved into a self-pity party very often. But having to think about the day-to-day things for them swung my attention from me to them, and they saved me from myself.”

12 Things Marriage Is and 12 Things It Isn't

24 years of marriage.
That's what September 15th meant for me.
We had celebrated earlier so I didn't remember until I was driving to work. I called him. Told him I loved him. I got grocery store flowers when I got home. Beautifully arranged by the way.
What ever did we do without grocery store flowers?
Between being a marital therapist and my own experience, I have learned a few things. Since I am on year #24, I've divided them into 12's. Just to be cute.

12 Things That Marriage Is Not:

1. Marriage is not for sissies. It's hard work.
2. Marriage is not about getting what you want all the time. It's not a dictatorship. It's not wanting to win all the time because that would mean the other person would lose all the time. May be OK for you. Not good for the marriage.
3. Marriage is not rocket science. The principles it's based on are really pretty simple. Kindness. Respect. Loyalty. That kind of thing.
4. Marriage is not unfashionable. It stays vital. Even Brangelina must think so.
5. Marriage is not in and of itself stimulating. Since you are with the same person over a long time, the two of you can get in a rut. You have to keep things fresh.
6. Marriage is not about collecting things. The joys of marriage aren't tangible. You live them. That's what makes them so very special.
7. Marriage is not for the impatient. Some of the best stuff takes a while to develop. You have to stick around to find that out.
8. Marriage is not the place for criticism. For abuse. If it is found there, it will ruin any chance of true intimacy or trust and dissolve the hope that once might have existed.
9. Marriage is not a 24-hour repair shop. Your marital partner is not supposed to meet your every need. Some of those needs you may have to take care of yourself. Through your friendships or other activities.
10. Marriage is not self-sustaining. It does not thrive on its own. If all you focus on is the kids, you are making a mistake.
11. Marriage is not boring. Two lives woven together can be quite exciting! There's just something about watching someone very different from you, living their life in an extremely different way. Up close and personal. You learn from that.
12. Marriage is not without conflict. Knowing how to disagree and work through anger and disappointment is probably the key to lots of stuff going well. Getting to that cooperating, mentioned in #2.


12 Things That Marriage Is:

1. Marriage is the potential for an intense, deep and diverse intimacy. Sexual. Emotional. Relational.
2. Marriage is knowing someone has your back. Always. You have theirs. It's about interdependence.
3. Marriage is realizing that you have been seen in your worst times, and that you are still loved. There's an overriding sense of gratitude and security.
4. Marriage is sharing old jokes. Or some story that may be told over and over but it still makes you laugh 'til you are left gasping for breath.
5. Marriage is getting teary-eyed together.
6. Marriage is thinking about the other one not being there anymore. And not being able to think about it.
7. Marriage is getting irritated by the things that always irritate you. Have irritated you for 24 years. Will irritate you for 24 more. And tolerating it because it is way overbalanced by the good stuff.
8. Marriage is not being able to wait to get home to share some little something.
9. Marriage is wishing you were the one having the operation. Or the illness. Not him.
10. Marriage is sometimes fighting. Trying to slowly learn to fight more fairly. To apologize. To listen. To learn. To find resolution.
11. Marriage is about vulnerability. Giving someone the right to hurt or disappoint you. While simultaneously giving that someone the opportunity to bring you tremendous joy and laughter.
12. Marriage is a promise. A vow. To try the hardest you have ever tried in your life. Marriage is a place for the achievement of a personal integrity like no other.
I'm now living year #25.

So far. So good. Thanks for reading! You can find more from Dr. Margaret at!

Dr. Margaret Rutherford Headshot

10 Simple Ways to Reduce #Stress TODAY

Most doctors will tell you that many of today’s ailments are caused not by viruses or bacteria but stress. Everyday people are becoming more stressed and not doing anything to minimize it.

Whether it’s with nutrients or stress relieving techniques, reducing stress will help you live a healthier life.

Although we experience stress all the time, our stress levels are highest when we are under pressure; and it’s those high stress levels that do us the most harm over time. There are many healthy and unhealthy ways of dealing with stress. Unhealthy ways of dealing with stress are temporary and, in the long run, can be detrimental to your health. Below is a list of unhealthy ways of dealing with stress that can damage your health and eventually ruin your life:

Drinking alcohol
Using pills (prescription/over the counter) or illegal drugs to relax
Withdrawing from others
Overeating or under-eating
Aggression or physical violence

Here are a few stress-busting nutrients and techniques that you can use on a daily basis to help you reduce stress before it reaches a level that may affect your life, health, and well-being.

Pantothenic Acid -This helps control the action of the adrenal glands, which play a crucial part in the stress response. Some foods enriched in pantothenic acid are cereal grains, legumes, lamb, chicory greens, endives, and mushrooms.

Vitamin C – During stressful times, vitamin C is depleted quickly. Vitamin C deficiency can worsen anxiety and irritability and can lower your immune system. Be sure to load up on vitamin C during stressful times to help give you the extra boost you and your immune system need. Kiwis, oranges, broccoli, sweet bell peppers, and raspberries are just of few fruits and vegetables that are enriched with vitamin C.

Zinc – Zinc is crucial to your well-being. It plays a role in at least 80 different enzyme reactions and is a brain neurotransmitter. Some of the foods that contain Zinc are poultry, whole grains, oysters, and nuts.

Magnesium -Magnesium helps reduce stress by lowering homocysteine levels, which in turn can help lower your risk of stroke, heart disease, cancer, Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s disease, and many degenerative diseases. Some good sources of magnesium are brown rice, okra, swiss chard, spinach, and almonds.

Working Out – Exercise perks you up! By exercising, you help reduce the level of stress hormones like cortisol. Physical activity also helps increase endorphins (your body’s feel-good chemicals), which can naturally boost your mood and battle depression.

Essential Fatty Acids (EFA) – Your body’s cells need a continuous supply of these fatty acids in order to function at their peak. The body uses EFA’s to repair membranes and cells, absorb nutrients, get rid of harmful waste from the body, reduce inflammation, and increase the activity of another chemicals derived from endothelial cells (endothelium-derived nitric oxide), which cause arteries to relax and dilate. EFA’s also reduce the production of messenger chemicals called cytokines, which are involved in the inflammatory response associated with atherosclerosis. Needless to say, EFA’s are essential in maintaining your health and well-being. EFA’s are found in foods like salmon, mackerel, sardines, flax seeds, walnuts, leafy green veggies, olive oil, and avocados.

St. John’s Wort and Valerian – Both of these herbs have been known to produce a calming effect. Either one is good to help relieve stress. However, it is not recommended that you take Valerian and St. Johns Wort together.

Meditation – Meditation is a powerful antidote to stress. Relaxation techniques such as visualization, progressive muscle relaxation, deep breathing, meditation, and yoga can help you activate the body’s natural relaxation response. When practiced regularly, these relaxation techniques lead to a reduction in your everyday stress levels. These techniques also help you to stay calm and collected in the face of life’s unexpected challenges.

Massage – A simple massage can be an immediate stress reliever by reducing tension in your muscles. It’s a great way to relax, relieve stress and anxiety, and reduce muscle soreness. A massage can also cause your body to release natural painkillers and boost your immune system. There are few sensual experiences that rival a full body massage for stress relief.

Talking with a Friend or Counsellor – When we are stressed, a good way of getting relief is talking with a friend or counsellor. Sharing your feelings and problems helps you let go of those things that are causing you turmoil, angst, and tension.

Nourish your body, mind, and spirit everyday, and you will be better able to reduce stress and live a happier and healthier life.

As always, please consult a physician before making any changes to your lifestyle, diet, or wellness program.


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