Tag Archives: excuses

That thing you have been avoiding…do it!

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The majority of people have something they are avoiding or are procrastinating doing.  I am no exception.  I promised to use this blog to help others learn from my life experiences…so here we go.

I am not proud to admit this to you all because by trade I am a wellness professional and make a living helping guide people on how to best take care of themselves and live a full, healthy and happy life.  But I am human and I too have things that I don’t do as well as I should, even when I know better.  My main avoidance for many years (we are talking 10-15 years) has been the dentist.  That’s right…I have not been to the dentist in over a decade.

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The truth is that I have very high anxiety when it comes to going to the dentist, which made it very easy for me to completely avoid it!  Once it was my responsibility to schedule appointments, I just didn’t schedule them.  I started off with just procrastinating and putting it off.  Then I started using excuses to rationalize why I hadn’t gone yet…I moved away for college, then it was I don’t have dental insurance, then it was I am pregnant (not a good excuse, by the way), then it was I am pregnant again, and again and again and again (yep 5 pregnancies), and then it was that we moved to a new part of town and I didn’t have a dentist in that area.  When in reality I just really, really, really, really, really, really didn’t want to go!

I am happy to say, however, that I finally made an appointment with a local dentist and had my first appointment yesterday! The hygienist and the dentist were both amazing and made me feel very comfortable.  They talked me through everything without scolding me or making me feel bad (or worse than I already was making myself feel) for not seeing a dentist all these years.  They completely changed my perception of going to the dentist and eased my anxiety that surrounded it.  For all you locals…check out Paragon Dental in Papillion.  Dr. Carter is awesome!  And best of all…no cavities or major dental work needed for me!  Woohoo!  One old cavity needs to be refilled (boo) and I need to have at least one wisdom tooth pulled (double boo), but nothing else!  I was convinced I was going to need to have crowns or root canals or other terrifying things done because I had waited so long.

We all have that one (or maybe more) thing(s) that we would just rather not do.  When we put it off and avoid it, it gets bigger and bigger in our minds until we feel guilt and stress every time we think about it.  Soon we start to feel shame for putting it off for so long and that just adds to the guilt and stress and eventually it gets to a point where you feel as if you can’t do it now because you have put it off for too long.

I am here to tell you that it is ok to feel anxious, nervous, stressed, etc. about these things.  But you need to own those feelings and still move forward and confront the task at hand.  And it is never too late to start now.  The thing that helped me most was that I was upfront and honest about it, both with myself and with others.  When I called to make the appointment, I let the person I was speaking with know that I was in search of a new dentist because I hadn’t been in a very long time due to anxiety and fear.  She assured me that I was coming to the right place then because they don’t judge and are happy to help me any way they can.  I let the dentist and the hygienist know as soon as I met them that I was very nervous and they walked me through everything step by step with no judgment.  Not that they wouldn’t have been that way anyway, but I am sure that it helped for them to know that right away so they could take extra care of what they were saying and how they were saying it to keep my nerves at ease.  Life always works out better when we openly communicate with each other.  Others can’t read our minds so we shouldn’t expect them to.  It is difficult for anybody to live up to our expectations if we don’t tell them what we are expecting of them.  So be honest with yourself and be honest with others and face that thing you have been avoiding.  You can do it!

Until next time,
Be kind to yourself and others!

Your Own Worst Enemy…

You are your own worst enemy.

Well you are…don’t give me that face!
This saying rings true in many ways in our lives, but I find it is very much true in our health and wellness.

We all make excuses, and yes they are just that…excuses, about why we “can’t” exercise, why we “can’t” eat healthy foods or why we “can’t” _____ (fill in the blank with whatever issue you are dealing with).  In reality, it is our own minds getting in the way.  Now before I continue, here is a short disclaimer…  Yes I very much believe that this is the case in MOST cases.  Yes there are situations where this is not true…there are exceptions to every rule after all.  So don’t send the hate mail just yet, I mean no offense to anybody.  🙂

I heard a speaker today discuss tips on organizing our lives and something she said really stuck with me.
She said that when it comes to time, there are overestimators and underestimators.  Those that underestimate time tend to be late because they will begin a project and it will take longer than they expected.  Those that overestimate time tend to look at a project (folding laundry was the example the speaker used) and get overwhelmed by the amount of time they think it will take and they will ultimately end up putting that project off until a later date/time because they think they don’t have time for it ‘right now’.  I see this ALL the time with people and their health and wellness!

I really think that a large majority (if not all) people tend to overestimate the amount of time and energy that living a “healthy lifestyle” will take.  I know you have heard it before and you probably hate hearing it again, but really all things in moderation really is the way to do it! 

One thing I hear over and over again from my clients is that they just don’t have time to dedicate to exercise so there is no possible way that they can get in shape or lose weight or get healthy.  Poppycock I say!  (excuse my language ;o)  There is ALWAYS time for activity in your life…yes I said ALWAYS!  Do you talk on the phone, do you watch television, do you do laundry, do you stand in lines, do you park your car in a parking lot?  Well do you, do you, do you?!  If you did not answer yes to at least one of these things…I am sorry, you are either lying or you hire somebody to live your life for you!  We all have these activities of daily living that we do.  And those activities are the answer to sneaking extra “exercise” activity into your day! 

I will give you the secret…shhh, don’t tell anybody…wait…yes, tell EVERYBODY!
*  When talking on the phone (at work at your desk or at home or wherever you may be) stand up.  Yep, stand up!  The act of simply standing versus sitting can burn approximately 50 more calories per hour!
*  When watching television do the tv workout!  What is that you say?  That is the beauty of it…you can create your own!  But the jist of it is that you just MOVE while watching your television program!!  If you still watch live tv and have commercials, do activity during the commercials.  Run in place, sit-ups/crunches, push-ups, planks, jumping jacks, etc.  In a 60-minute program you can get approximately 20 minutes of activity in just during the commercials!!
*  If you carry your laundry from one area of the house to another, make a couple extra laps with the laundry basket before you drop it off in the laundry room to sort it.  It will only take a couple of minutes, but you are burning extra calories!!
*  Standing in lines is my favorite!  While standing in line, you can do “calf-raises” by simply standing up on your tippy-toes and then standing flat-footed again.  Repeat that until you get to the front of the line!
*  When parking, especially on those days when the weather is beautiful, park further away and make that walk into the store.  I know we all try to park close to save time, but in reality it takes longer to drive around and find a close spot or wait for somebody to walk to their car and leave than it does to walk from a further spot!
*  Finally, take the stairs!!!  Pretend the elevators are broken in every building!  Now I too will use the elevator when I have to go up many floors…let’s face it, stairs are hard!  But if it is 5 floors or less, I will try to use the stairs!

Remember, you CAN do it, you ARE worth it and wellness really DOES work!
Make today a happy, healthy day and sneak that extra activity into your day!:)