Taking Time To Focus

I’ve often been guilty of blaming a “lack of time” as an excuse for not getting things done.  But when I really think about it, that isn’t my problem.  No, my problem is not lack of time, but rather, lack of focus

I’ll think to myself, “Okay, today after work I’ll do some research on the internet on that topic I want to write about on my blog.” Or I’ll say, “I’ll spend Saturday afternoon writing several posts so that I won’t be writing them at the last minute.” 

But it often doesn’t work out that way.  I simply get distracted.  I’ll sign on to the internet and I’ll see those AOL news blurbs on my home page and jeez, doesn’t that one about Sandra Bullock and her hubby look interesting? And oh my gosh, Ricky Martin has come out of the closet!

Then of course I just have to check my two email accounts to make sure I don’t miss important notification that I’ve won the South African lottery, and if I just send King So and So a check for, say, $5,000, he’ll send me my millions RIGHT AWAY! And how can I take the chance of missing a very important forward that I have to send to 10 friends or I’ll have bad luck for life. *Gasp.

And of course there’s Facebook – which wouldn’t be that bad if I hadn’t foolishly signed on to become a farmer at Farmville. I cannot go a day without checking my crops! My hubby and I were out of town this week-end and when I came back I had 20+ (count ’em) gifts waiting for me from my farming friends! Me, farming?? What’s that all about?

Finally, right after I sit down at my computer to write a great blog post, I start thinking about all the other stuff that needs to be done – like start a load of wash, load or unload the dishwasher, empty the dryer and fold clothes . . .

Jeez, it’s a wonder I ever get any writing done!

Distractions, my friends, will ruin my ambition to become a famous writer.

If I can ever pull myself away from all this stuff,  I can read this post by Henrik Edberg and learn about the importance of focus. He states that “what you focus on – both in the long term and in your daily life – makes a world of difference.” Henrik also talks about how to improve focus.

The Success Conscious website provides some great tips I can use to improve my concentration here.

Sam Horn, author of a book called ConZentrate, talks about five FOCUS tips in this article.

If you could use some tips on how to improve your productivity, check out my time management post. (Hey, maybe I have to read that post again!)

So what about you?  How’s your focus?  I’ll happily read your comments – but first I have to check my emails!

Celebrate Your Age!

One of my favorite blogs is written by a boomer and “aging coach” Gail McConnon. Her blog is geared toward women who are divorced, widowed, or single who are facing the challenges of aging.

I’m not aging alone, but I certainly am aging. So I can relate. I thoroughly enjoy what Gail has to say and how she says it.

And what a great title for a baby boomer’s blog – “Celebrate Aging.” Don’t fear it, don’t try to run in the other direction. Simply enjoy it. Make the most of it. And if it makes you nervous, read what Gail has to say. It’ll help.

 

Bea’s Quotations of the Day:

There’s always a lot to be thankful for if you take time to look for it. For example, I am sitting here thinking how nice it is that wrinkles don’t hurt. (Author Unknown)

Let us never know what old age is. Let us know the happiness time brings, not count the years. (Ausonius)

 

Make the World a Kinder Place!

It’s crazy out there isn’t it?  We’re going through some tough times. In our country, the recession seems never-ending.  Lack of jobs, decreasing salaries, increasing tax burdens, the typical partisan act in D.C., Ponzi schemes, road rage, cyber bullying, school shootings, nuclear weapons testing, people losing sons and daughters in Iraq and Afghanistan . . . .
The list seems endless.  And I don’t know about you all, but it makes me feel . . . . powerless.  After all, I can’t change the world, can I? 

No, I can’t change the Big Old Ball of Confusion. 

All I can change is me, and I do that by changing my attitude. I can choose hatred, or love.  I can choose intolerance, or respect. I can choose cooperation with others, or I can choose a stubborn need to be “right.”

I can choose to be kind to others.  And hopefully, they will choose to be kind to me, and to other people also.  And then suddenly, everyone will be kind, and nice, and cooperative, and it will be, as the Great Satchmo sang, “A Wonderful World.”

Right now you’re rolling your eyes and saying, “Yeah, right!”
Heck, I’m writing this stuff and laughing at myself! 

Call me naive, but I’m gonna try it anyway.  I get the feeling it will help me feel a little less powerless in this Big Old Ball of Confusion. 

Here are some ways for us to be kind in our communities. (Now mind you, some of these sound a little goofy, such as “handing balloons out to passersby.”   And “distributing lollipops to kids” might not be a good idea nowadays. However, there are some valid ideas in these lists.
Here are some ways to be kind in our workplace.

Oh yea, and don’t forget – be kind to yourself also. Just for the heck of it.

You may also like my post about doing good deeds – good for others and good for your own wellness!

Dying To Be Thin

When Bea was a teen-ager, dieting and exercise were all about getting to that perfect weight, which was always five pounds less than she weighed at that moment. Bea was never satisfied with how she looked. I believe this disorder is called “look in the mirror, see fat thighs and big hips on a 115 pound body.”

She definitely had self-image problems, though not as extreme as described in this Wikipedia article about “body dysmorphic disorder.”

Bea set impossible standards for herself based on society’s “ideals.” These physical ideals were based on Barbie Doll measurements (38” by 12” by 32”, LOL). Trying to meet these standards simply did not work.  Luckily, Bea has wised up over the years. 

Unfortunately, many women are still trying to meet up to these unrealistic and unhealthy standards. (As touted in celebrity mags and rags such as Us, Star, and The Enquirer – where they alternate between writing about the latest starlet’s miracle diet and pointing out celebrities’cellulite). 

And did you ever notice that almost every article about a famous woman (television star, author, talk show hostess, doctor, artist, etc.) simply has to mention her size? She could be a scientist who made a great advancement in technology, but all we care about is that she’s a size 4. What’s up with that? It’s the 21st century.  Whatever happened to “You’ve come a long way, baby?”  Is it all still about how we look, not what kind of person we are and what value we add to our lives and the lives of others? 

This obsession with weight is why many of us go on fad diets and follow trendy exercise routines that promise instant results. We take laxatives or weight loss supplements that can be dangerous. We binge and purge. (Those words even sound nasty, don’t they?)

What we don’t seem to realize is that an obsession with being thin (with large ta ta’s, of course!) is one of the factors that lead to life-threatening disorders such as anorexia and bulimia. And it’s not just teenagers and young women who are suffering from these disorders.  Experts are seeing more women over thirty in treatment for eating disorders, and what has been termed “manexoria” is becoming more prevelant.

Truly frightening.

At Psych Central, Margarita Tartakovsky writes about eating disorders and self-image on her Weightless.
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Calling Dr. Oz!

Even though I read an article that claims fame has corrupted Dr. Mehmet Oz, I still like reading the health, wellness, diet, and aging advice on his website. It must be his good looks. . . and you can’t deny his credentials.

Dr. Oz talks about 7 small changes you can make in your life to increase your longevity here.

Then there’s his article about 10 easy ways to live healthier.

I also like his diet advice, which comes from a book he wrote with Dr. Michael Roizen, You, On A Diet.
NOT Dr. Oz (not even a reasonable facsimile!)

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Pets – Gotta Love ‘Em!

Our dog can spell.  I kid you not.  I tell my husband that I’m thinking about taking the dog (Desi is his name, by the way) for a W-A-L-K. Desi’s ears perk up. His eyes widen a little. He stands on my lap and starts tapping his paw on my chest.

Tap. Tap. Tap.  Then a little whiny noise, just to make sure I’m paying attention.  Then he’ll jump off the couch and look at me and make funny noises. If I ignore him he’ll give me his tough guy bark. “Hey woman, you said “Walk.” Get your butt off that couch and take me for a walk!

Oh yea, he’s annoying.

Of course, he sleeps with us.  Now this wasn’t too bad when we had a king-sized bed.  However, we recently downsized to a queen-sized.  For a 16 pound dog, Desi takes up a heckuva lot of bed space! And he will. not. move. period.

Yep. Annoying as hell.

But how can I not love this mutt?  He follows me around like a lovestruck teenager. Sits by the bathroom door, waiting for me to come out. When we’re out for a walk, he prances along proudly, then looks back at me as if to say “Hurry up, will ya?  I got lots of sniffing and peeing to do.”

My hubby tells me that around 10 minutes before I get home from work, he’ll ask the dog, “Where’s Camille?” and the dog jumps up, runs to the living room couch and pushes the blinds aside to peek out and watch for my car. Then he’ll pace around by the door to the garage, waiting for me to come inside.

Of course, when I do get home, he’ll nonchalantly look up (“Oh, it’s you”) then plop back on the couch, ignoring me.  Now what the heck is that all about?

Who can resist a face like this?
Hey, our pets love us unconditionally.  They never nag us, they keep our feet warm when we’re sleeping, they don’t talk back or argue like our kids do. And on top of all that, they contribute to our health and wellness!
Medicine Net talks about 27 ways pets can improve your health in this slide show. Owning a cat or dog is actually good for your heart, your blood pressure, and can help you cope with stress.
There may be some issues with sleeping with your pets, as discussed in this WebMD article.
If you love dogs you may want to check out these blogs about dogs:
And of course, cat lovers really need to check out the cats at I Can Has Cheezburger. And Love Meow (for the ultimate cat lover)

Ok, I know some of you readers have pets! Got any good cat or dog stories? Is there anyone out there with an unusual pet?

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Wellness on a Deserted Island

Ok, picture this. You get invited for a little cruise on your friend’s yacht (Whoo hoo! I wanna be your friend! You obviously know all the right people). You’re only going out for a three hour tour, yes, a three hour tour (sing it, Gilligan!).

Multiple Motor Yachts

                                          Image via Wikipedia

Luckily for you, you’re one of those people who plans for the worst scenario.  (Meaning, you pack a carry- on bag with all the stuff you’d need, just in case that yacht sinks). Because the worst happens.

That yacht gets caught in a raging storm on the ocean off the Gulf of Mexico.  It bumps into a whale who just happens to be coming up to the surface to spit or breathe or whatever (Obviously, I don’t know much about whales).

Just before that yacht sinks, you pull your life preserver from your trusty carry-on bag (to heck with everyone else! It’s every man, or woman, for him or herself). And of course, you hang on to that bag because you’re going to need it when you drag yourself onto the beach a that deserted island.

So what the heck is in your bag? What things would YOU need to ensure your personal wellness on that island? Because you’re it, baby. You’re the only survivor. (Ya know, if you had wanted company, you would have included two life preservers in that bag of yours and given it to that cute guy or gal you had your eye on before they were swallowed by the whale).

  

Now, if Bea Boomer was the one stranded on that island, these are a few things she couldn’t live without:

  • For mental and/spiritual wellness: Several good books, including The Inspirational Study Bible by Max Lucado, and some journals and pens.

  • For emotional wellness: My Snuggie and favorite pillow, and pictures of my family and friends. A portable CD player with (lots) of batteries and several CDs (Sixties music, Motown, Santana, Inspirational, and Meditation).

  • For physical wellness:  Assuming the island had fresh water, these 10 Foods as suggested by WebMD, and a pair of Reebok cross-trainers.

  • For social wellness:  Well, crap, I couldn’t fit a friend in that stupid carry-on bag. And I couldn’t carry a laptop – no WiFi on that dumb island, how in the heck could I sign on to Facebook???  I guess my only option would be to talk a lot to my Gemini twin. (How long do you think I’d remain sane on that island, hmmm?)

But how about you?  What would you need to sustain your sanity on that deserted island, just in case you weren’t rescued in a day or two? 

Aging – Bring It On!

During her Internet meanderings to seek out wellness information and fun stuff, Bea has discovered something of prime importance: Older people have got it going on.

So don’t be fooled by your children or your grandchildren, who appear to know it all and are all too willing to inform you of that little fact.

With age comes: laugh lines (not crow’s feet, dammit!), aching muscles, graying hair (and/or receding hairlines), thighs and various other body parts that succumb to gravity, and other annoyances.

Well, bring it on, Father Time, because I’m not afraid.

 

I’m not afraid because age also has its delights:

  • Wisdom,
  • Resilience,
  • A can-do attitude,
  • A sense of self-confidence,
  • A realization that laughing at yourself and at life does you a world of good . . . .

 

Oh yea, and we write some good stuff!  Bea has found some well-written blogs by boomers and others living out their golden years that contribute to the health and wellness of their readers.

Bea’s Blog Recommendations:

These are just a few!
Ronni Bennett provides a more extensive list here.

Quotation of the day:

Grow old with me! The best is yet to be. (Robert Browning)

Has anyone else found any good boomer sites or blogs out there in the Wide World of the Internet?

If you like this post, you may like:
What’s so great about aging?

March – Save Your Vision Month

A modern pair of prescription glasses with a h...Image via Wikipedia

I started wearing glasses at age 12. I’ll never forgive my brother-in-law, who noticed me squinting at the television and said to my mom, “You need to take this kid to the eye doctor!” I was about to enter middle school, that dreaded adolescent battleground; with “four eyes,” and a polyester wardrobe, I didn’t stand a chance.

There I was, walking timidly through those hallowed halls, and sitting on top of my nose (okay, sliding down my nose) was the most god-awful pair of cat-eye shaped glasses the world had ever seen.  My mom must have picked them out. I’m sure I had much better taste than that, even at 12.

Over the next several years I tried different styles of glasses, always looking for a pair that would make me look “cool.” Ha. Never happened.

I hated them. The lenses made my eyes look smaller. They left marks on the bridge of my nose. They got splashed on like a windshield when it rained. They’d get all steamy when you walked inside on a cold winter’s day. (Hey, why doesn’t someone invent eyeglass wipers, and defrosters built in for when the darn things fog up on you?)

Finally, I turned 18, got a job, bought contact lenses and whoo hoo, I was on my way to being gorgeous. (Okay, not true.  But I was definitely stepping out of the nerdly zone)

Now I’m pushing 53, and I’m no longer simply nearsighted. I’ve graduated to bifocals (no line, thank you very much) with scratch resistant, super thin lenses that change color in the sun. They cost around $400 with insurance coverage and do I wear them to work? No way – I still reach for my contact lenses.

Of  the five senses, my sight (or what’s left of it!) is the one I simply don’t want to lose as I continue aging. Not being able to read, or drive, or see the faces of my loved ones – that would be too heartbreaking for me. And it’s a fact that aging puts us at risk for eye problems such as cataracts and glaucoma, as well as macular degeneration.
Resources
The Prevent Blindness America website is a great all-around resource for eye topics.
I hope  on living for a long time, and having a fun time doing it.  Which means I want to see!
Catch a wave, Bea! (Or is that an old man on that board?)
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Bea’s Husband Needs an Energy Boost!

Bea’s bought her husband a robe last Christmas. He calls it his “sleep robe.” When he puts it on after dinner and sits on the couch to channel surf, he dozes off. And let me tell you, he does it rather noisily!

Bea will be sitting at the computer, typing away, or searching the Internet for fun health and wellness tidbits, when all of a sudden she jumps up! There’s a wild animal in the family room, growling! She tiptoes down the hallway and peeks around the corner to see what it could be (lions and tigers and bears, oh my)! Nope – it’s none of these; just the hubby, snoring on the couch.

 
Later, when he’s in bed, trying to fall asleep for the night, he’s tossing and turning and wondering why in the heck he can’t get a good night’s rest!
 

After doing a little Internet research, Bea found some possible culprits that may cause those energy slumps. Web MD talks about eleven possible energy zappers here.

 
 The husband’s energy drain seems to be a combination of Not Enough Food (#8 on the list) and Too Little Exercise (#3 on the list). Mr. Boomer sometimes eats only one (ONE!) meal a day, and he never eats breakfast during the week. #1, sugar, might also be a culprit – Mr. B. is known to enjoy a Suzie-Qs or a chocolate donut as nighttime snacks.
 
His “cardio” exercise routine: Walk to fridge to get a snack. Walk back to couch. One squat to sit down on couch. Press clicker with right thumb (alternate with left for a little variety). Repeat.
 

Now if Mr. Boomer was motivated to become more energetic, Web MD has 21 ways for him to do that, in only ten minutes a day!

How’s your energy level? If you’re a Michigander, or live in another state with loonnnggg winters, it may perk up now that Spring is just around the corner. If you want to kick-start your energy, you may want to try eating foods that will boost both energy and mood. Check out Web MD’s “Energy Foods Slideshow.”

If you want more ideas on how to increase your productivity and energy, check out this post at the Dumb Little Man blog.

What are your energy zappers? Have you seen any good articles about increasing your energy level? 

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