Making real changes
When was the last time you watched a baby learn to walk? They struggle to get up on their feet, teeter back and forth for a moment, and carefully place one foot in front of the other time after time. In no time, it seems, they are off and running. It may take a days or a few weeks before they graduate from crawling on all fours to walking on their own two feet. While they are working at that new habit, they may laugh at themselves or be very serious but they keep working at it. They all succeed, right?
It’s been a little over a month since we made our list of resolutions for this year. How are you doing? Most of us start with good intentions then get discouraged or maybe we get too busy to work at making those changes. If we think of it as fun or it is something we enjoy, we are more likely to stick with the new habit. If we think of it as work or something we have to do, it’s probably going to fall by the wayside as we get on with our lives.
We might even start berating ourselves for our lack of success instead of encouraging ourselves along the way, adding more stress to our already stressful lives. Stress is all around us. It certainly takes a toll on our bodies, especially the heart. Maybe that’s why the second month of the year is known as heart month. With all the talk about cancer, we forget that the number one killer is still heart disease. Nicknamed the silent killer, it does not discriminate based on gender, age or nationality. More women than men die from heart disease: five times the number that die from breast cancer each and every day. For years the research and education promotions focused on cardiovascular disease in men because women were thought to be somewhat immune to it. Often a heart attack is misdiagnosed in women because their presenting symptoms are so different from what a heart attack looks like in men.
There are times when the woman was told to ignore the signs because it was just indigestion or, worse, ‘just in their head’. Gives new meaning to the term ‘silent killer’, doesn’t it? What can we do? Keep those resolutions to lose weight, eat healthier, exercise more, laugh more and reduce the amount of stress we take on. Start small, with baby steps, and applaud your progress. Be your own cheerleader. Laughter has been shown to alter our body chemistry.
Cathy Goodman attributes laughter to healing her breast cancer in less than four months. She chose to focus on the positive and eliminate as much stress from her life as possible. Take care of your heart. Your loved ones will thank you. Have a Ramblin good week.