Meditation – It’s Easier Then You Think!

April 25, 2010

I don’t know about you but the word meditation by it self used to intimate me like crazy.  I had this picture of a yoga master “humming” away and I was thinking I can’t do that! I can’t sit still for more then 1 minute before my mind takes over with 1000 thoughts (I have to pick up the dry cleaning, I have to work on this project, what Am I going to wear next week-end for my conference) you know what I mean don’t you?  I had to truly understand the meaning of meditation before I finally gave it a go!  Meditation is simply being in a state of awareness. When your mind is focused on one thing, and is free of all other distractions, it can be considered meditation.   I started by just sitting down quiet for 2 to 3 minutes after my work-outs.  It was very difficult at first but like anything in life if you want to get better at it – you need to practice.  To get me started, I used Dr. Wayne Dyer meditation CD – Manifest Your Destiny.  Find out what works for you – meditation CDs, DVDs or perhaps meditation classes, just give it a shot!  YOU are worth it! 

The Benefits of Meditation

Meditation gives you the skills that allow you to feel centered, calm and happy no matter what you are going through in life. Meditation is a form of relaxation that can bring about many benefits to the psyche of a person such as:

  • Decreases stress
  • Improves mood
  • Decreases depression
  • Increases memory
  • Decreases moodiness

Meditation is not only for the mind but there are several health benefits: 

Some physical benefits of meditation include:

  • Reduces blood pressure and an improvement in breathing due to the increase of air flow that gets to the lungs;
  • Lowers resting heart rate (which takes some of the stress off the heart);
  •  Lowers stress and anxiety levels; and
  • Promotes youthful skin and a youthful appearance.

 

Additionally, meditation can be a great problem solving tool. If you have a problem you cannot solve, meditation can help you clear your mind and uncover a solution that daily logic may not see.

How To Meditate

The secret to meditating is learning how to relax and clear your mind. There are few general rules to help you get to your state of awareness:

  1. Start by selecting some relaxing music or use a meditation CD. (This is also a perfect place to use you affirmation recording, if you made one.)
  2. Find a quiet place where you will not be disturbed.
  3. Get comfortable in a seated position. 
  4. Close your eyes.
  5. Take several deep breaths. Listen to yourself breathe.
  6. As you begin to relax your body, concentrate on each body part. Start by relaxing your neck. You can do this by gentle moving your head in small circles from side to side and back and forth. 
  7. Take several deep breathes. Listen to yourself breathe.
  8. Relax your shoulders by rolling them a few times and then lowering them.
  9. Relax your arms and hands.
  10. Relax your chest and abdomen.
  11. Relax your legs. knees, calves, ankles and feet.
  12. To relax further, you can count backwards from 25 to 1.
  13. Once you are relaxed, think about your purpose, the reason you are meditating.

 


Tips for successful meditation

  • Do not meditate within 24 hours of having consumed alcohol or non-prescription drugs.
  • Do not meditate within 2 hours of having consumed a large meal or within 1 hour of having consumed caffeine or a light snack.
  • Do not meditate within 30 minutes of having smoked.
  • Turn off all phones and Blackberries devices or turn them to silent.
  • Dim the lights.
  • Light a candle.
  • Remove your shoes and loosen any tight clothing.
  • Do not be frustrated if other thoughts keep popping into your head while you are trying to meditate. It takes practise to focus on one issue at a time. As you meditate more frequently, the easier it will become.
  • Stick with it. The more often you do it, the more you will get out of it.

 

To find out more about Dr. Nathalie you can visit www.drnathaliebeauchamp.com


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Setting goals and shaping your future…with Dr. Nathalie

January 3, 2010

“If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.” Unknown

I often start my Wellness On The Go™ workshops with information about the importance of setting goals.  By a show of hands, I ask the audience to demonstrate how many of them have goals, and whether or not these goals have been documented. Throughout the course of my workshops I have come to recognize that very few individuals actually make up goals for themselves, which quite frankly shocks me. On average, two or three of these individuals will admit to having goals out of the fifty individuals in attendance, and typically only one of these people will actually have their goals written down.  I then ask the group what would happen if I got into my car after the presentation, not knowing my next destination. Where would I end up? Most people laugh and answer “nowhere!”—which is my point exactly. It seems like a silly question to ask, but if we don’t know where we want to go with our lives, where are we going to end up? We spend more time planning our vacations than we do planning our lives.  Why is that?  A goal is nothing but a dream with a deadline. Creating a road map is necessary if we are to become successful individuals.

Ask Yourself…

  • Have I established goals for the next year, 5 years, 20 years?
  • Am I truly living the life that I want to live?
  • Have I made myself accountable for what I want in life?
  • Will my failed goals lead to unwanted consequences?

 

Our goals drive us, they allow us to shape our future, and provide us with the ability to grow and excel in each of our endeavors. That being said, it is important to remember that in order to achieve our goals we must first document them.  When we do write down our goals something amazing happens; we become creators, creators of our own paths. Remember, what the mind can imagine, it can create: Anything is possible. HOW we are going to achieve our goals at the time of setting them may not be clear, but if reasons come first answers will come second. If you have a big enough WHY, the HOW will manifest itself—you will find a way to make things happen!

“Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” Albert Einstein

 

 

Ask Yourself…

  • Do I have goals that have been left unaccomplished for an extended period of time?
  • Am I truly making strives towards accomplishing my goals, or am I hindering my own efforts either consciously or unconsciously?
  • Am I willing to look at things differently, so that things can change?
  • Am I open to new ideas or strategies that may positively assist me in the achievement of my goals? Where can I get ideas? Who could help?

 

Each year on the first of January, I take the time to reflect upon my goals from the previous year. I like to evaluate what I have accomplished, and review everything that has manifested throughout the year. It always makes me smile, how things have unfolded for the goals which had a strong  enough WHY even if I did not really know at the time how I would get them accomplished…amazing how that works! To continue, now that I have reviewed my previous year’s goals, I am ready to set new goals and design a roadmap for the next year’s journey. My successes motivate me to create new goals for the coming year and open up my mind to all the future possibilities.

My Goals, Categorized

 

 

  1. Personal development and relationships– What skills do I want to develop? What do I want to learn? What relationships do I want to create?
  2. Career– What do I want to accomplish? What kind of impact do I want to have?
  3. Fitness, nutrition and food for the soul– What level of physical fitness do I want to maintain or achieve? What can I do to improve my eating habits? What practices can I partake in that will cultivate my spirituality? 
  4. Material things and time savers– Have fun with this one – have I been dreaming about purchasing a new car or installing the latest home entertainment system? Or do I want to hire help for household duties, so that I can have more time with my family and friends? 
  5. Economic– What income level do I want to achieve? Are there investments that I would like to make within the next year?
  6. Legacy– What do I want to leave behind?  What do I want to be remembered for?

 

7 Steps Goal Setting Strategies

 

  1. Brainstorm each of the categories for 5 minutes, don’t think too hard and allow your thoughts to come naturally.
  2. Next, establish a timeline for each of your goals, whether it be a year, 5 years, 10 years or 20 years.
  3. Decide upon a few goals (three or four from each category) that you wish to focus the majority of your attention on.
  4. Now determine the WHY of each of your top three or four goals.
  5. Decide if the WHY of each of your top three or four goals is “strong” enough—does it empower you enough? If not, pick another goal from that category which does get you motivated and excited.
  6. After that, put your goals through the “SMART” system.

 

 S – Specific – Is your goal too vague? Specifics help us to focus our efforts and clearly define what we are going to do. Answered by what, why, and how.

M – Measurable – How will you know when you have succeeded? Establish concrete criteria for measuring progress toward the attainment of each goal you set. If you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it.

A – AttainableA goal needs to stretch you slightly so you feel you can do it and it will need a real commitment from you. 

R – Realistic – To be realistic, a goal must represent an objective toward which you are both willing and able to work. Your goal is probably realistic if you truly believe that it can be accomplished.   Set the bar high enough for a satisfying achievement!

T – Time-bound – Do you have a timeline? Putting an end point on your goal gives you a clear target to work towards.

  1. Finally, beside each goal – write one action step you can take this week to get you closer to your goal. (i.e.- If you want to start doing Yoga – Your action step would be to contact the Yoga school you wish to attend, and ask about their classes and schedule.)
  2. Make sure to place your goals in an area of your home, or office, which is frequently visited. The probability of accomplishing your goal(s) is increased when your ambitions are reviewed on a day to day basis.  (Stay tune for my article on vision boards and how you can create a powerful visual tool for your goals).

 

Finally, have fun with your goal setting – you can do this goal setting session with your partner/spouse or a close friend. Personally, I refer to my goal setting sessions as a shopping list, a shopping list to the universe!  Remember to THINK and PLAY BIG—the more successful and fulfilled you are, the more you will contribute to the people around you and ultimately, to the world. Furthermore, embrace the fact that what we can think about, we can create—leverage the power of your sub-concient to plant the “right” seeds in your brain and watch what can happen!

To living with passion, purpose and a plan!

Dr. Nathalie


Fighting the flu naturally – facts and tips

October 4, 2009

With fall here we brace ourselves for many changes – leaves change color, kids are back at school, and the carefree way of life we’ve been living all summer falls victim to the fears associated with flu season which has come knocking at our door.  Naturally, trying to protect yourself and your family from the dangers associated with the flu has become a priority this season – especially in the midst of the H1N1 virus scare.  But have we, in our desperate attempt to protect ourselves and loved ones, managed to overlook the inherent concerns of the flu vaccinations and fallen prey to some media’s hysteria.

 

 In 1976 the outbreak of Swine Flu lead pharmaceutical companies to develop a vaccine.  Lucky for us, nobody died of swine flu, unfortunately, we did not develop immunity to the complications and side effects of a poorly tested vaccine, and 25 people did die due to side effects of the vaccination itself.  Several hundreds of people also developed Guillain- Barré Syndrome (severe neurological disease). At that time, lawsuits against the pharmaceutical company sky rocketed and totaled over $1.3 Billion, leading the vaccine to thankfully be withdrawn off the market after 8 weeks.  Today, in 2009 we are not as lucky as we once were – a poorly tested and non FDA approved vaccine, which may cause death, has nothing to stop it.  Big pharmaceutical companies have succeeded in developing their own personal immunity to lawsuits.  This leaves us- the customers and patients- without remedy should something go wrong. 

As the H1N1 virus continues to spread, panic and hysteria spread with it.  It has been declared a pandemic- sounds scary, right? In reality, all pandemic means is that the virus has a large geographical spread, and has nothing to do with severity or deadliness.  So as we continue to create panic predicated on nothing more than a word, we need to take into consideration the negative repercussions associated with how we react.  Our first instinct is to jump to vaccines. Before you do so, consider a few of the following facts:  

Fact- known carcinogens (cancer producing) substances can be found in vaccines.  For example, a substance called Squalene, can be found in the new H1N1 vaccine. Squalene is a naturally found oil molecule in your body, the Squalene injected acts in opposition to the Squalene that occurs naturally and attacks through the brain and nervous system.   

Fact- many health care professionals refuse to personally take vaccines.  On August 25, reports showed that half of the doctors and nurses would not take the vaccine due to concerns about side effects and efficacy.  It is reported that children and the elderly are even more vulnerable to side effects of the vaccine.  How is this vaccine on the market you ask? These flu vaccines have been passed into circulation without being FDA approved due to a sense of urgency.  

Fact- infection and flu like symptoms can be greater as a result of vaccines.  When contracting the flu or infection naturally it is done through mucous membranes (IgA) – through you nose, mouth, lungs, and digestive track.  Often times, the infection will stop here and be fought off by your first defense.  When injecting the vaccine directly into your blood stream you bypass this first line of defense and immediately jumps start your defensive system creating a big shock to your already weakened system, leading to severe side effects. 

So what can you do to diminish your chances of getting the flu this season? Take control of your own health; don’t wait for someone else to tell you what to do.  You know what is best for YOUR body, even though others may try to impose their own ideas on to you. These impositions can and do happen – take the example of a new Bill that has been passed in the state of Massachusetts. Bill S-2028 states that if a person does not receive the Swine Flu vaccine, they can be ordered into quarantine.  So before you get into line for your H1N1 vaccination this season, consider a few other tips on how to keep yourself, and your family healthy: 

1.        Optimize your level of vitamin D – might be worth seeing your health care provider to get your levels checked – it is not recommended to take capsules without having levels tested – best source is still the sun!

2.        Get enough rest – 7 to 8 hours of “recharching” sleep.

3.        Try to decrease your stress with effective tools like exercise, meditation or fun activities.

4.        Wash your hands often and long enough!

5.        Cough on your sleeve not in your hands.

6.        Make sure that your nervous system is working optimally – studies have shown that a healthy nervous system = a healthy immune system – see your wellness chiropractor.

7.        Avoid processed sugar as it will only diminish the strength of you immune system.

8.        Keep your body alkaline (decrease acidity) – diseases strive in an acidic environment.

9.        Exercise with weight and perform cardio exercises regularly.

10.     Take a high quality source of animal base Omega-3 fatty acids

11.     Use natural antibiotics like garlic – olive leaf extract and oil of oregano (works like a broad spectrum antibiotic against bacteria and viruses)

12.     Avoid hospitals and understand the pros and cons of vaccines – even the people that are the weakest (elderly, kids and pregnant women) will be more susceptible to side effects and adverse reaction as their immune system is already low.

13.     See your naturopath or your homeopath to help prevent or even to “manage” your flu symptoms should you get the flu. Do your best to protect yourself and your family this season by staying informed and being aware. Visit ww.mercola.com for more information and references on this topic.   


14 tips on eating your way to wellness

June 24, 2009

  1.  Break your fast(breakfast)- increase metabolism; non-acid producing, low-sugar/glycemic fruits and green/fruit juices; or light, alkalizing foods only.

2.  Grazing-eating 5-6 smaller meals per day vs. 3 large meals (a portion is the size of your fist, not what you can get on your plate).

3. Avoid excessive alcohol, coffee, soda, dairy, SFA, and processed foods.

4. Eat organic food whenever possible and avoid genetically modified foods where possible (reduces pesticides, herbicides, antibiotics)

5. Focus on eating fresh vegetables, lean meats and fruits. Try following a gluten free and a low glycemic index diet as much as you can to keep you bowel healthy and keep your blood sugar stable.

 6. Avoid eating dead foods, or foods that are processed, refined, frozen, or canned (try reducing  anything man made passing your lips).

7. Reduce red meats, especially overcooked meat (carcinogenic)

  8. Avoid eating when you are stressed, depressed, ill, extremely tired or emotional, or when you are not truly hungry, as this inhibits digestion and creates fermentation..

9. Drink lots of good water to keep you body hydrated. 

10. Do not drink to much  liquids – not even water – with your meals and separate your meals from any liquid intake by at least ten minutes – doing so will dilute your digestive enzymes and affect proper digestion. 

11. Properly combing your foods for maximum nourishment and energy.  Consider using the Metabolic Typing ™ approach.

12. Eat slowly and chew all foods completely

13. Avoid eating condensed foods especially animal products, immediately before bed.

14.Take Vitamins to supplement your diet for optimal function when necessary.