Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Limiting Face(book) Time

Holding a full time job and starting a business while trying to eat right and workout makes for a busy schedule. I've been balancing everything pretty well before starting my practice in April. Now time seems to escape me and before I know it, it's post dinner and all I want to do is sit on the couch and relax.  But time is of the essence because like everyone else, I only have 24 hours in a day and I want to use it the best I can.
Every time I make a decision of whether to work out, go shopping or leave earlier so I'm not rushing to my full time job, I consider whether or not it detracts from business development time.

When I do get an opportunity to sit down at my desk at home, I am fairly productive minus one thing. You guessed it: Facebook. I was never a super avid user of Facebook, but I have been on it constantly since launching my practice. The boon of social media has been the bane of my time management.

I believe my increased usage is primarily due to the fact that I provide a lifestyle product. Therefore, I should stay top of my contacts' mind and market or write witty updateswhen I can. Unfortunately, Facebook is like a maze. You don't come out the other end until you've explored every nook and cranny of it.

Last night, my client, who has been facing the same problem, and I set a mutual goal of limiting our visits to Facebook to once a day. I'd like to extend the invitation to you and ask you to join us in our goal to regain some of our time. Maybe your big time management sucker isn't Facebook. Maybe its too much TV time, visiting blogs, making multiple trips to the grocery store, etc.  Allow this to be a forum for whatever your goal is.  Good luck!

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Tip for the Week: Listen to Others

This week's tip is to spend some time listening to others.  When was the last time that you were in a conversation where you truly listened to the other person?  Where you were not trying to think of something intelligent|witty|sarcastic|newsworthy to say?  Probably quite a while ago.

Listening is a really powerful skill.  I use it often when I am health counseling and it is amazing how I can help and learn so much from others simply by allowing them the time, space, and atmosphere to speak to me and truly be heard.  When you bring this component into your personal life, you allow the person speaking to you to fully express themselves.  Strengthen your relationships and start new ones by simply asking how someone is and truly listening to them.

Try it out this week.  See how you feel and how others react when you give them 100% of your attention.  Let me know how it goes!

Saturday, September 25, 2010

FAQ: Good Carbs vs. Bad Carbs

I have the pleasure of being part of the Wellness Committee at work.  It has been a slow start but I'm excited for what the group stands for and to be able to do something I related to health and wellness during my daytime job.  As a committee member, I write a Q&A column in the monthly newsletter.  I answer some common questions that people have about health and nutrition.  I thought I would share this information on the blog and start an FAQ section that will keep the archive of the questions.  Have any questions that you'd like me to take a stab at?  Ask them here or email me at lisachinhhc(at)gmail(dot)com.

Q: Is there such a thing as “good” carbs?

A: Great question! Carbohydrates or carbs tend to get a bad rep by dieters (perhaps due to the popularity of the Atkins diet) but not all of them are bad. Sources of carbohydrates break down into glucose, which is essential to our body’s functioning. Did you know that glucose is the main source of energy for our body – including our brain? That means that choosing the right carbohydrate is very important!

There are 2 groups of carbohydrates – complex and simple.
“Good” carbohydrates are the complex carbohydrates because they take a longer time to breakdown in our bodies and do not rapidly increase our blood sugar. Some examples are whole grains, beans and legumes, nuts and whole grain cereal and breads.
“Bad” carbohydrates can simple carbohydrates, which are often devoid of protein or fiber and break down very quickly in our digestive systems. Examples are fruit juices, candy, non-diet soda, table sugar, and white flour and rice. They cause a very rapid spike and drop in our blood sugar. This spike and drop causes stress on our bodies and has been linked to diabetes.

It’s important for our energy level and our overall health to choose complex carbohydrates. Some simple changes you can make are to switch to whole wheat alternatives of your pastas, breads and baked goods and to incorporate more whole grains into your diet. Examples of whole grains include brown rice, quinoa, barley, millet, wild rice, oats, and buckwheat. Beans and nuts are an easy addition too – add them to your salad or have them as snacks (e.g., hummus, trail mix).

Friday, September 24, 2010

Miss me? Catch me on Facebook & Twitter!

Life is happening so fast these days that I feel like I can only produce short quips of thought at a time.  Maybe you've missed me on the blog?  Yes, I've been absent and will soon resume a steadier schedule.  The good news is that while I haven't been the most diligent with the blog, I have been updating my Facebook page and Twitter account which I have easier access to with my schedule.  

You can follow me on those and still get helpful and informational updates in bite size pieces :)  I like to share links to interesting articles, health facts and tips, and random thoughts that cross my mind on Facebook. You can also join the conversation with providing your comments!  And I use Twitter(@lisachinhhc) to share both fun, spur of the moment thoughts and observations on health, food, and life. 

Please join me on both to catch the latest and greatest on what's going on in my world.

P.S. Lots of exciting news developing in my health counseling practice.  Look forward to new services and a new name before the end of the year!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Quote: The Four Seasons

Winter is an etching, spring a watercolor, summer an oil painting and autumn a mosaic of them all. 
~Stanley Horowitz

The northern and southern portions of the world have four seasons for countless reasons as does the area around the equator have many reasons to not have four seasons.  Growing up in the northeast, I have always loved the spring and fall but was not always fond of the winter and summer months. As I get older, I have learned to appreciate the beauty of each of the seasons - as if they were separate entities and not related to each other.  Kind of like how you should treat your children :)  Or how Stanley Horowitz describes them as creation of different methods of art.  As I have learned to love the abundance of new life in the spring, the freedom that summer represents, the beauty of the fall and the brisk winds of the winter (yes, I actually miss those winds!), I feel more connected with nature and the movements of the earth.  I'm always sad when season ends for another to begin but such is life.  It makes me appreciate what I've experienced in the past 3 months and anticipate my future.
How do you feel with the end of summer?

Friday, September 10, 2010

Yoga for Free Delivered to Your Computer

One of the biggest hurdles for me to practice yoga often was the idea that I needed to be in a studio to practice.  There is nothing that beats a practice with a room full of other deep breathing yogis but sometimes neither schedule nor budget permits visiting the studio.  A couple of years ago, I found out about an amazing website called Yoga Today.  It has a library of hundreds of hour-long yoga classes that you can access.  The instructors are really knowledgeable and there is a lot of variety to the classes.

The site features a free class each week and a monthly membership is really reasonable - only $10!  If you sign up for the year, it's $90 - less than what a lot of month memberships are at yoga studios.

I have been meaning to post about this site for a while but just today, I signed up for their Ambassador Program to spread the word about the site.  As a referral of mine, you can receive a FREE 2 week trial of the site with full access to all of their videos.  There's nothing to lose and only peace and harmony to gain! 

Click here or go to www.yogatoday.com and enter lisachinhhc in the Ambassador ID text box.  Happy weekend and Happy yoga'ing!

Monday, September 6, 2010

Happy Labor Day!

In honor of Labor Day, this is all I'm posting :) You don't have to work at work but still be sure to work for our health - eat well and do something beneficial for YOU today!

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Quote for the Week courtesy of Dr. Oz

“For every dollar we spend on prescription drugs, we spend a dollar  to fix a complication.”
— Mehmet Oz, M.D., Professor of Surgery at Columbia University
 and author “YOU: The Owner’s Manual” and “YOU: On A Diet”
A picture is worth a thousand words...
This week's quote is a bit different than the aspirational quotes I've posted in the past.  This week's quote by Dr. Oz states a grave reality that our society is facing.  Medication has been touted to fix our diseases.  It has shifted how we eat, live, sleep and treat our bodies in general.  Because of medication, disease is not seen as something we can prevent or treat naturally but something to be remedied, when the time comes, with a pill, shot, elixir or other method of treatment.  Unfortunately, medications have not helped us but causes more diseases for which we take even more medication. 
Take time today to evaluate what more can you do to practice preventative medicine - not reactive.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Grocery Stores - My Personal Meccas

When I was younger, I'd go to the grocery store with my mom and would never want to sit in the cart.  Why would you want to sit in the cart and be confined when trying to grab something you want when you can be walking around "shopping"?  Nowadays, I still love walking the grocery stores but have a different outlook and purpose.  I enjoy seeing the different choices in produce (fresh, frozen, seasonal, organic, local, etc.) and healthful and not healthful products.  What is sold at grocery stores is just so intriguing.  Whenever I travel, I always make sure to include a grocery store experience in my trip.  They're my personal meccas :)

Here is a snapshot of the main grocery stores that have touched my life: 
Growing up, we only shopped at one grocery store because we did not have a car and it was the closest one.  I got to know the A&P very well in the 17 years that I frequented the store.  I don't go as often now because the selection is not plentiful or fresh and I usually do have access to a car when I'm home now.

One of the first places I went to when I got to college was the Super Stop & Shop near the school. I don't remember what I bought but I remember thinking this place was humongous.  I would go often through my four years at Babson and had some fond memories of it including chasing my now-boyfriend through the parking lot because he took my sandal, and yes, we were in college :)

The other grocery store near the house I grew up is a nice sized ShopRite with fresh and reasonably produce.  It is the preferred grocery store for my mom and brother now.  I found out last week while leading a grocery store tour with a client, that this Shop Rite has a lot of great whole and organic foods (in additional to the more processed foods), including quinoa, lots of whole grains, all sorts of nut milks, a wide selection of milk, and better quality meat selection.  It's good to see more and more stores carry a wider array of products, especially a store in a suburb in NJ.
Shaw's and Star Market are the same company. There was one near my college but it was very underwhelming and I only remember shopping there if I needed something last minute.  When I moved to Boston 3 years ago, there was a HUGE Shaw's a block away. Needless to say, I was a frequent shopper.  What I loved especially about this Shaw's is that there was a sizable natural foods and products section and an ethnic section.  I usually spend a good part of my time shopping there just in those aisles reading the interesting ingredients and seeing the different items featured.
Upon moving to Boston, I fell in love with this very special store, Trader Joe's. It is a grocery store which started in California and has rapidly been spreading across the country and developing strong following. For those of you who have experienced Trader Joe's, you either love or hate it. Some people I know don't like the crowds and especially the cramped stores in the city. However, many like myself visit regularly to pick up items that cannot be found in other stores or get really great prices on products.  These include organic nut butters, organic almond milk, organic fruits including apples and lemons, cinnamon (they have the best cinnamon!), frozen desserts, and mixed nuts.  I can't shop exclusively at Trader Joe's but I couldn't live without it.

And last but not least...

Trader Joe's has a very strong group of fans but I'd have to argue that Wegmans has just as strong a following.  Wegmans is a grocery store that started in upstate NY. I first heard of Wegmans from my boyfriend who grew up down the street from it in Syracuse.  When I visited him during a break in college, I was finally able to experience Wegmans.  The one in Syracuse is very, very, very big.  There is a dedicated prepared food section - like a food court at a mall, kitchenware section, enormous amounts of fruits and vegetables including $1000/lb truffles, freshly baked breads and other goodies in the brick oven, your normal aisles of packaged foods, a large ethnic section, a sizable organic and natural products section and a wide selection of bulk goods. The great news is that there is one coming to the Boston area and now with a car, I can go whenever I want! 

So these are the important grocery stores in my life, how about you?  Do you just run in and out or do you like walking around like me?  I'd love to hear about it!

Friday, September 3, 2010

Autumn New Beginnings

I gotta admit, I was stuck in a rut in August. I felt like I was moving forwards in so many aspects of my life but being held back in so many others.  I'm definitely missing IIN and the amazing energy from the classes and the friends I've made.  My full time gig has been tough with a couple of less than mindful projects.  At the same time, I did receive my Reiki certification, bought a new car, and visited family!  Looking back on August, it was overall a good month and I post this in September because I'm heading towards the tail-end of my rut.  I'm ready to become a bigger (in some ways) and better me starting this month!
To me, September/autumn has always meant rebirth and a new start more so than January/the new year and April/spring.  I blame this entirely to the school system and the back-to-school sales at which I piled my shopping cart high with new Bic lead pencils (0.5mm, of course), Papermate pens, Trapper Keepers(!!), Five Star notebooks, plastic lunch boxes with cartoons on them, and new clothes.  The brand spanky new school supplies symbolized a much greater newness in my life that started every fall for 17 straight years.  Every year was a new year, an advancement from last and an opportunity to make new friends, learn more and shed a little bit of the old me behind.  This was especially true when I transitioned to a different school which happened in elementary, middle and high school and college. 
As I head into this fall, I look forward to embracing a sense of a new beginning and improving on who I was and who I've become in the past year.  Starting this fall, I plan to continue to develop my business with new programs (check out my latest here!), meditate more, practice my Reiki, sleep more, practice lots more yoga, embrace the season with leaf peeping trips and visits to a corn maze, apple orchard, and pumpkin patch, and be a better girlfriend, friend, sister, daughter, cousin, etc.  What are your thoughts of September?  Does this time of year conjure up the same feelings for you as it does for me?  What are your goals as we head into the season of leaves a-changing, pumpkin patches, corn mazes and trick o' treaters?