Everyone handles their anxiety differently, but I always love to do some research to see if someone has any new ideas on handling their anxiety. Sometimes these tips and tricks work, and other times they won’t. It just depends on the person and their level anxiety.
I would say that I’m a fairly anxious person. I’ve opened up about this in a number of blog posts. I find myself worrying over the smallest of things, like the way I spoke to someone or like small symptoms that I worry to be a sign of a bigger problem.
I know, however, that many have it a lot harder than I do. But, I hope this list of coping mechanisms and relaxation tips will help you as much as they help me!
MAKING A VIDEO DIARY
Sometimes, I feel even more anxious and depressed when I talk out loud to myself because, in all honesty, it makes me feel crazy. So, to remedy this, I decided to whip out my iPhone when I have something I need to talk about.
I record myself talking in vlog style. I just kind of open up about the struggles of the day and the frustrations I’m going through. I normally delete my videos because I don’t want to clog up my phone’s memory space. I think it would be really cool if someone created a video diary app where people could record their feelings and see where they used to be in their anxiety journey.
I love this mostly because it helps me get out my frustration and, during my little talks with my “audience,” I often find a new perspective in my feelings that helps me better deal with things.
USING AN OIL DIFFUSER OR CANDLE IN STRESSFUL ZONES
We all have different areas in our home or place of business that are more stressful than others. For me, it is my home office area and my regular office at my job. For myself, scents are powerful and really help me to calm down in stressful situations.
I really recommend an oil diffuser, especially if you aren’t allowed to have candles in your work place like myself. You can purchase oils that are specifically for stress relief. My favorite oil to use is a lavender oil. It really helps to destress a stressful environment.
MAKING LISTS AND SCHEDULES
I can honestly say that creating a to-do list or a schedule really helps me. For example, I bought myself a cheap planner to use for scheduling my blog posts. It helps me to stay organized and I can easily change my post ideas with some white-out.
I have another example. This past weekend, I went back home to help my mom declutter and clean my grandparents’ room. She had made a list of things to do, but they weren’t organized by type. I decided to organize the lists by what needed to be done outside of the house, in my grandparents’ room, in their bathroom, in my mom’s room, and around the house. Then, we were able to prioritize and get the most important things done before moving on to secondary tasks.
PLAYING BRAIN GAMES
I find that I tend to have fewer and fewer anxious episodes when my mind is busy. For that reason, I start almost every day with some brain games. I have two apps on my phone for this particularly. I normally plan a round of sudoku and a game of solitaire. Not only does this help me activate my brain and get it ready for the day, it also helps to take my mind of off super stressful things happening in the background of my life.
KNOWING WHEN IT IS TIME FOR A BREAK
I feel like a ton of people who struggle with anxiety tend to try to be people pleasers for the most part. For me, it’s all because of how I feel someone sees me. I don’t want to be seen as a bad friend for not wanting to hang out, a bad family member for not wanting to help out, or a bad employee for needing a break or being unable to complete something in someone’s desired timeframe.
But, I try to remember back to three or four years ago when I was in college and had to give up some of my leadership positions in my various groups because I simply couldn’t handle the stress. In college, I was the drum major of the band, the editor of the newspaper for three years, in a sorority where I was the president, in gospel choir where I was the president, and in a number of academic honor societies that had different requirements. On top of all of that, I was taking classes full-time.
I decided that I wouldn’t stop being in any of my groups, but I would give up leadership positions in some of them, mainly in my sorority. A group of people actually decided to let someone else be editor of the newspaper my senior year, so that also helped.
But, it is OK and good to take a mental health break. If you have some vacation days at work or you are able to take a long weekend, do it. Even if you just sit at home and watch your favorite shows. You don’t have to go somewhere to relax your mind!
DOING SOMETHING I LOVE
Whenever I'm feeling anxious, it always helps when I do something that I love to take my mind off of that thing that's making me anxious. For myself, that is usually watching a movie, baking, or writing. It is sometimes honestly just going to a room on my own and listening to my favorite music.
Your hobbies will change as you age, and your hobbies will be different. This one really works if you have some friends who also enjoy them. This gives you the chance to be around people who love you doing something you both love to do!
There are a ton of ways out there to cope with anxiety. I know there are many I didn't even mention. If you have any tips or tricks to coping with anxiety attacks, please let me know below in the comments so I can give them a try. I hope these few tips can help someone else out there!
LEGAL: All photos taken from Pixabay.com, a Creative Commons website that requires no attribution for photo use.
Candy is one of the best parts of Halloween, but it can also be one of the most unhealthiest parts of Halloween.
No matter if you're a child or an adult hoping to sneak some of your kids candy after they nod off, candy can be dangerous if you eat too much at once. It can cause you to crash, add a ton of excess calories to your diet, and so on and so forth.
I'm not making this post to say that candy is this terrible thing and you are dumb if you have a few pieces this Halloween. Instead, I had my own interest piqued and wanted to learn how many calories some of our favorite Halloween candy held.
So, if you want to know how many calories are in Halloween candy, keep reading!
CANDY CORN, CANDY PUMPKINS
Reese's Peanut Butter Cups
A crispy cookie surrounded by caramel and chocolate sounds pretty good right?
These little crunchy candies allow for a serving size of three which will cost you 150 calories, making them 50 calories each. The candies also contain 7 grams of fat, 60 mg of sodium, a gram of protein, and 20 grams of carbohydrates (15 g from sugar).
Suggested way to burn those calories: To burn off these candies, walk up and down a flight of stairs six to eight times!
Butterfinger Bar Minis
3 Musketeers Minis
Lollipops are all made differently. For this blog post, I wanted to get a lollipop that had bubblegum in them, because I remember getting those often when I was a kid.
This brand has a serving size of one for 60 calories. The only other listed nutrition is 16 grams of carbohydrates (12 grams from added sugar).
Suggested way to burn those calories: Seven minutes of kickboxing!
MilkyWay Midnight Minis
Tootsie rolls are a type of chocolate caramel if I'm not mistaken! They are peanut- and gluten-free for those who have allergies.
You can have five Tootsie Rolls for 120 calories, making one 24 calories. Other nutrition includes 2.5 grams of fat, 10 mg of sodium, 23 grams of carbohydrates (17 grams of sugar), 12 mg of calcium, and 33 mg of potassium.
Suggested way to burn those calories: Play a round of basketball for about 15 to 20 minutes to burn off the calories you ate when you had five Tootsie Rolls!
Candy is delicious, but it certainly adds up. If you have JUST ONE PIECE of each of these candies, you will have eaten 413.8 calories! Keep that in mind when you reach your hand into the trick-or-treat candy bowl next week!
As for me, I've decided to spread the calories in the form of Halloween treat bags for my seven coworkers!
Was your favorite candy listed? If not, do some research and see how many calories it would cost you to have a single piece on Halloween!
Yet another Wellness Wednesday is upon us, so I wanted to make sure I added some physical wellness things into the mix for today's blog post. So, I would like to share a few ideas to help you "spook" up your workout this Halloween season, no matter if you lead a fitness class or work out at home.
So, grab a towel, head to your workout space, and try these workout tips. Maybe, actually, you should read them before heading to the gym. There are a few things you might need.
SUBSTITUTE YOUR WEIGHTED BALL FOR A PUMPKIN
THE FRANKENSTEIN WALK
ESCAPE THE KILLER
You've come upon a muddy pond and you have to walk through it. Lunge your way through the water (20 lunges)!
You see the police station! Run another 1/4 mile to safety!
TRICK OR TREAT FOR EXERCISES
HALLOWEEN CANDY WORKOUTS
Compile a list of Halloween candies and look up the calories it will cost you. Do different exercises to help you burn off the calories for each one. If you want to, you can always indulge in a few pieces of candy post workout, or you can burn those calories and let that be that!
- Let everyone in the group dress up for your next workout session or class.
- Watch a Halloween movie and do a set number of a certain workout every time a specified action is performed or
a specific word is mentioned.
- Let everyone come up with a workout that is Halloween inspired and perform them as a group.
Use these various workout ideas to help make your Halloween workout spooktacular! Do you have a workout idea? Let me know in the comments below.
Your skin is the largest organ in (or rather, on) your body! This means that it needs a lot of attention to stay healthy, but we often neglect our skin by forgetting to wash off our makeup and moisturize.
In the fall, skincare is essential. Chilly nights can leave your skin dry and flaky, and the winter months, which are just around the corner, will further damage the skin you neglect to take care of in the fall.
So, I wanted to share with you my skincare routine. I'll let you know how often I do these steps and hopefully I'll help someone out!
1. REMOVE YOUR MAKEUP
As for me, I use the Beauty 360 makeup wipes for sensitive skin. It does a great job of scrubbing deep to remove your makeup. After that, I usually use a cleanser to remove whatever is left. I use a generic cleanser from my local Walmart (pictured below). I remove my makeup this way every day!
2. USE A FACE MASK
3. USE A SUGAR SCRUB
4. USE AN ASTRINGENT
I recommend doing this if you tend to be acne prone. For me, I only break out a few times a month, so I like to use this each day after I use my cleanser. I use the Clean & Clear Deep Cleaning Astringent. If you're not sure what it does, an astringent contains salicylic aside that helps to fight off acne and prevent pimples. I just use clean hands to apply this, but some may use a cotton round or cotton ball. I use my astringent every day.
LOVE THE SKIN YOU'RE IN!
LEGAL: All photos in this blog post were taken by me.
Pumpkins have historically been linked to the fall season, no doubt because that is when they grow best, but also because of their connection with Halloween.
So, since today is Wellness Wednesday, I decided that it would be a good idea to tell you all some of the health benefits associated with this festive fall fruit (yes, pumpkin is a fruit)!
1. PUMPKINS HELP KEEP YOUR EYES SHARP
We’ve all heard that carrots have the ability to keep are eyesight at its best. This is actually thanks to carotenoids, the pigment responsible for giving carrots their orange color.
This same pigment is found in pumpkins. So, if you eat pumpkin, you’re getting those benefits. Carotenoids are, according to EJ Johnson, thought to “provide health benefits in decreasing the risk of disease, particularly certain cancers and eye disease.”
So, if you’ve yet to consume some pumpkin, you should get on that soon!
2. IT CAN DRY UP OILY SKIN
According to StyleCraze.com, one face treatment using the power of the pumpkin can keep your face from getting oily.
All you have to do, according to the site, is mix a tablespoon of pureed pumpkin with a teaspoon of apple cider vinegar.
Dampen your face and apply the mask. Leave it until it is dried (up to 30 minutes) and rinse. Repeat this for an oil-free face!
3. IT MAKES RESTLESS NIGHTS DISAPPEAR
4. IT CAN ZAP AWAY YOUR ACNE
5. ITS SEEDS CAN STOP HEART DISEASE IN ITS TRACKS
If you’re not too fond of eating the gooey contents of the pumpkin, you can always munch on this squash’s seeds. Pumpkin seeds are high in phytosterols. This is a molecule that is closely related to cholesterol. However, the phytosterols are actually better for you than cholesterol. Their close relation actually makes them the perfect thing to fight and reduce bad cholesterol in your body!
6. HELPS YOU GROW LONG, LUSCIOUS LOCKS
7. PUMPKINS ARE A SUPER FOOD
So, now you know the incredible benefits of eating or using pumpkin! I hope you feel inspired to give this super squash a try.
LEGAL STATEMENT: All photos used were found using the "free to use or share, even commercially" filter via Google.com and do not require attribution. Contact Google for more information.
As far as medical conditions go, it is safe to say that things aren't always as they appear. However, sometimes, conditions can be very visible, but can appear as something much different. For me, answers came when my mom took a 23AndMe quiz when learning about her heritage.
I don't want to freak anyone out or trigger anyone, so I will link photos a bit farther down the page so that you don't see them if you don't want to. If you're triggered by scabs or blood (not a lot of it), then please click off of this blog. I don't want to lose you as a reader, and I don't want to set something off in you that makes you feel uncomfortable. I will use pictures of me until we get further down the page so that you don't see anything you don't want to.
was a bad habit, but I seem to fit the reasoning behind the skin-picking. When I looked it up myself, it said that most people who have this condition are genetically predisposed, meaning their relatives may also have this condition. It is also common in people with OCD, although I have never been diagnosed with it before.
For me, scabs normally start as bug bites, scratches, or pimples. I usually pick at my skin when I'm bored, but mostly find myself doing it in high-stress times. I also pick my skin because I hate the feeling of scabs and I hate how they look. I would much rather pick the scab than leave this big ugly red thing on my skin, but I just can't seem to help it.
MY CONDITION AND MY RELATIONSHIPS
Both my mom and my husband constantly scold me for picking at my arms. They use reason, which is good, but obviously that doesn't make me stop. Even while writing this, I have found myself stopping for a minute or two to scrape off dry skin or pick at my scabs. I'm not doing it intentionally.
The best way I can describe it is based off of a documentary my mom and I recently watched together. It was following a dirt bike rider who had crashed and become paralyzed. He said that he had to concentrate really hard and actually tell his brain and body parts to do something in order to move. I have to try really hard and repeat to myself not to pick at my skin.
My husband and mom both put up with it though, although they both think I can stop whenever I want. I've actually struggled with this for a long time, but never had a name for it. I remember a family member telling me in high school that people might think I was a drug user because of all of the scabs, as several drug users scratch at their skin or damage it with needles.
In the next section, I will add pictures of my arms so that you can see what they look like and how they impact my daily life. This is your warning, because I can't figure out any way to "click to reveal" the photo so you don't have to see it!
MY FEELINGS ON MY DERMATILLOMANIA
My dermatillomania bothers me more than I'd like to admit. I find myself constantly stopping to scratch. Sometimes, I will scratch myself until I bleed, sometimes even at work. I have gotten better about scratching and picking during meetings, but it still happens sometimes. I wish you could turn off a mental problem when you wanted to, but it isn't that easy. Now for some pictures.
The middle photo is my arm at the time of writing this blog. It isn't too bad, but you can visibly see scabs that are redder than others and my insanely dry skin. The other two photos are actually screen grabs from one of my YouTube videos where my husband and I played a game on a road trip. You can see my arm in both of the shots, and it looks very "dotted" and red.
This is what I struggle with. It is hard for me to take photos and videos where my arms are visible, because I know it probably looks gross and ugly. I mainly pick my arms and hands. I will sometimes pick at my legs and I often pick at my face due to the pimples that pop up and sometimes scab over. However, those are a bit easier to hide with makeup, as you can see in the screen grabs.
I really hope I didn't gross anyone out. These pictures aren't too bad, but I know that people can be triggered by this. I just thought I'd do something a bit different for today's Wellness Wednesday post. I hope that you learned something new. I only have one other friend with this condition, and he is actually my BEST friend funnily enough!
Do you have this condition or know someone who does? If so, do you have any tricks or tips for keeping your dermatillomania under control? Let me know in the comments!
LEGAL: All photos are my own.
I always hesitate to share anything about my mental health because it is still so taboo amongst the Christian community I find myself surrounded by. However, all of my followers know that I have anxiety.
I can remember not eating for almost a week as a kid because I saw something on TV about food poisoning and people who died from it. My family was concerned and tried to convince me to eat a little bit here and there. I also remember, for some reason, being scared to die when I went to sleep. I remember patting my hand on the bed or counting in a hushed whisper until I fell asleep. My logic: if I’m moving or speaking, I know I’m not dead.
When I was young, I didn’t tell my family about that last bit. Death is still hard for me, so much so that I don’t want to go into it even in this blog post.
I also desperately tried to keep the newspaper alive. In my junior year, there was another student, who was older and had already had a job in communications in the real world, who wanted the chance to be the editor. Despite two years of experience and so much dedication that I would skip class to finish laying out the paper, they chose her. She had constantly dragged my name and made fun of the newspaper while I was the editor, but when she came to me to tell me she was having a tough time, I heard her out and helped her when I could.
Even if it means running myself into the ground to help people or organizations I love, or even people or organizations that have done me wrong, I will do it. But people take advantage of that.
Lately I’ve been anxious over seeing the bad guys of my world flourish. I see that person who makes coworkers cry getting tons of interactions on social media.
I’ve seen family members who have ruined their relationship with me start a new life and do nothing to involve me without being convinced to do so by other family members.
I’ve helped and helped and helped and still gotten chewed out for not being capable of or not feeling up to doing one thing. I’ve had people use my kindness (and credit score) to rent a house only for them to leave it in a terrible condition. I’ve had people who let their promises fade because they knew I wouldn’t be super aggressive about it. I’ve had people take advantage of my kindness for car rides or something to do on a Saturday night. I’ve had church officials tell me my illness isn’t an excuse to miss events, even when it makes me double over in pain.
I’ve had people tell me that I can’t have faith in God and have anxiety, despite the fact that Jesus was so anxious in the Garden before his death that he sweat blood.
I’ve had people tell me that it is wrong to be in love with someone who isn’t the same color as me. I’ve heard people repeat exactly what I’ve said and be praised for their thoughts because I didn’t want to speak up and risk getting in trouble at my job.
the ground. If you suffer from anxiety, I hope you are able to get help or at least get a few people in your life who you feel comfortable talking to. If you don't have anyone, feel free to connect with me on social media. I'm not a counselor, but I will always chat with you!
LEGAL: All photos are my own or taken from Pixabay, a creative commons website that requires no attribution for photo use.
We're all afraid of something, right? Phobias are the fear, mostly the irrational fear, of something. Some of the most common phobias include acrophobia, the fear of heights, and arachnophobia.
But, odds are, there are a ton of phobias that you actually know nothing about. So, in today's blog, we will discuss six little-known phobias. Who knows, maybe you will leave this blog page with a new fear.
low battery power or no signal. Many people who have this fear may experience it because they were once in a situation where they needed help, but couldn't use their phones to call someone. But, odds are, if you can survive several hours without needing your phone, you don't suffer from this particular phobia.
This phobia is said to be most common in children and women. Someone who has had a bad experience in water may have this fear. One thing is for certain: many animals suffer from this phobia.
(fear of clowns), people dressed up as killer clowns and stalked parks, playgrounds, schools, and other locations in hopes of scaring the bejesus out of unsuspecting bystanders. Here's a video of some of the stunts:
Some suggested that the clown trend may have been a way to promote the newest "It" movie, but the trend has since died down. But on Halloween, when creepy clowns and other scary costumes are put on display, you may have a rational reason to have Samhainophobia.
especially for smaller children who may not understand the consistency of peanut butter. But, I myself am a huge lover of peanut butter, so I can say with certainty that I don't suffer from this one.
So, I hope you learned something new about some of the phobias people suffer from. While they may seem silly or light-hearted to most of us, some people have a true and paralyzing fear of these things.
Phobias are a type of mental illness, which is why I wanted to cover them in today's Wellness Wednesday blog. I hope you enjoyed, and I hope I didn't scare you too much.
LEGAL: All photos are my own or taken from Pixabay, a creative commons website that requires no attribution for photo use.
As Hurricane Florence continues to near my home, I realized just how hard it will be to stick with a weight loss program, special diet, or mental health-building should disaster strike. I myself remember how long I was out of commission after Hurricane Matthew hit my area in 2016, and I can see this hurricane hitting harder and keeping us in the dark longer.
BEFORE THE STORM HITS
Here are a few things you can do before the storm hits to maintain your health and wellness routine when disaster strikes.
GET FLAVOR PACKETS FOR YOUR WATER
Water is always important to have in your emergency stock pile, but some may decide not to stay hydrated and rather drink sodas or alcohol during a storm. However, this can cause you to become sick with issues like nausea, which can make surviving indoors with no AC nearly impossible.
Instead, buy some flavor packets for your water. It will help give your water variety while still keeping you hydrated. There are low-carb, low-calorie options, and there are flavors that everyone will love!
IF THE STORE IS OUT OF WATER, DON'T COMPROMISE
I actually ran into this problem when I was out shopping for storm supplies when I was at my mom's house. I thought I wouldn't have to fight against the crazy storm preppers since I heard the storm wouldn't cause as many problems in her area, which is nearly three hours away from my home.
I was wrong!
By the time I got into the store, there was very little water left. I actually had to pay nearly $2 for a 12 pack of those small waters you generally give to your children. But, it was better than nothing. Before I saw those, however, I didn't see any affordable water choices!
While the diet Dr. Pepper looked tempting, I decided to stock up on these as well as my baby water bottles. Later, when I visited another store, I decided I would also get some Powerade, which contains electrolytes to help keep us hydrated should we run out of water or want a little bit of variety.
MAKE THE BEST DECISIONS POSSIBLE
Some ideas for hurricane snacks include jerky, pepperoni, nuts and seeds, cheddar chips, fruits, and veggies.
TAKE SOME TIME TO PLAN AND ORGANIZE YOUR THOUGHTS
For me, I am testing the waters. I was actually farther from the storm, but decided to come back to my house because I have my husband and cat here along with several electronics I want to save.
WHEN THE STORM HITS
Here are a few tips to follow when the storm has hit. This could mean that you're trapped due to flooding, your power is out, or you have no water to bathe in.
GET MOVING TO PREVENT WEIGHT GAIN
This will keep your heart pumping and facilitate calorie burning to help you maintain your weight loss, even when you're stuck in the house during the storm.
SERIOUSLY, DO ANYTHING
you're stuck with! You can learn a new language, how to knit or crochet, or how to write a poem. The possibilities are endless, and you've got a lot of time!
CLEANLINESS IS NEXT TO GODLINESS
Aside from your diet, you need to be sure you are staying clean, dry, and safe when you are without power and water.
Instead of wasting water on baths, do what they do in hospitals: take a bath with some baby wipes. They are good enough to keep your baby's bum fresh, so they're good enough to keep you fresh! Invest in some and use them during the storm to keep clean and conserve water.
STAY MENTALLY HEALTHY WITH A DAILY JOURNAL
I may not use them on my YouTube channel. Often, I delete videos a few days after I take them. If you don't want to do a video, you can just journal your day or feelings to help you organize your thoughts and keep the scary thoughts away.
So, staying fit and healthy during a storm isn't impossible, but it isn't easy either. It will take dedication to stay away from sugary and carb-loaded foods, and it will take motivation to get up and move when you're stuck in one place. But, you will thank yourself when you continue to see the results you were hoping for!
LEGAL: All photos are my own or taken from Pixabay, a creative commons website that requires no attribution for photo use.
As someone who struggles with bouts of anxiety, I can tell you that your mental health is just as important as your physical health. That's why I wanted to blog about a few ways you can reduce stress in your life for today's Wellness Wednesday post.
1. TURN OFF THE MUSIC
down or even off can help me take some time to meditate on my day or just let my brain relax. If I don't want to turn my music completely off, I like to listen to slower songs. It helps to calm the frantic energy that comes along with stress.
2. USE SMELL TO CALM YOUR NERVES
recommend trying different things until something works out for you! Be sure, also, that you purchase essential oils and not burning oils! Aside from stress, essential oils can help you sleep better, get over colds and flus, and much more!
3. FIND A MANTRA OR MOTTO
This helps me remember that God is always there and that he has equipped me with everything I need to be powerful and strong, I just have to trust in Him and work hard toward my goals.
For many, your mantra may not be spiritual in nature. It may be something like "keep calm and carry on" or "don't slap Sue from accounting today." Your mantra or motto will help ground you and keep you from going off your rocker in the most delicate times.
4. VENT OR KEEP A JOURNAL
advice, and get over it or address the cause of the stress. You also need to be careful who you vent to. I vividly remember being in middle school and venting to a "friend" about how I really liked this boy but he had this awful girlfriend. The next day, I was humiliated in the hallway when the boy's girlfriend confronted me about what I said to my supposed "friend."
So, be careful who you share with. If you don't feel comfortable sharing with another human, you can always talk to your animals or write down your feelings in a journal. No matter what, relieving the stress by telling someone or something else can make you feel a lot better.
5. MAKE HEALTHIER CHOICES
alleviate your stress and make you feel much better in no time! You can also kick back with a healthy snack like fruit or veggies. These have tons of vitamins and aren't empty calories like your cookies and chips.
This is just the tip of the iceberg. There are tons of things you can put into practice to help alleviate or reduce stress in your life. Do you have any tips? Leave them down below so others can learn what worked for you!