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"There is no passion to be found playing small - in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living." ~ Nelson Mandela.


Fresh and Nutritious Gets our Glow On!


At the time I didn’t realise how lucky I was, but now in hindsight, I am so grateful to have grown up in a time and place where we ate fresh, nutritious, wholesome, REAL food! Growing up eating real food, (as opposed to the processed/ packaged/genetically modified/ nutritionally-deficient stuff), definitely gave me a head start on health during my formative years.

I was born in the mid-sixties in Cape Town, and one of my earliest food memories is of going to the fruit and veggie market with my Mum and loading up the car with bags and trays of brightly coloured fresh fruit and veggies.
And twice a week the fruit and veggie man would come to our street with his horse and cart, which was loaded with produce fresh from the farm.
 
Everything we ate in those days was fresh, not frozen and locally produced – Cape Town didn’t yet have a supermarket.

We bought fresh meat from the local butcher (no hormone and antiobiotic-fed animals in those days); fresh fish from the local fishermen who would sell their catch straight from the sea, and fresh milk and cream were delivered daily from the dairy.

Growing up with a health-conscious Mum also gave me a great advantage in the nutrition stakes. Biscuits, cakes, fizzy drinks, crisps, ice cream and choccies were only an occasional treat.
Many of my school-friends were indulged a lot more than I was, and this lead to a lot of nagging and complaining from me! 
When Nik-Naks (bright orange, cheesy maize snacks) were first launched in South Africa, some of my friends would get them in their school lunchbox. How I nagged for those!
My Mum’s answer to this was to slice carrots into matchsticks.
“Just pretend they’re Nik-Naks”, she said.
But it wasn’t quite the same!

And what really got to me was one of the school mums who would give each of her children a tuck bag of chocs, sweets and crisps as they got into the car, after school.
I knew the children were adopted – and I wanted to be adopted! 

I thought being adopted was the luckiest thing ever! Your parents actually came to choose you out of all the other children, and you got a big bag of treats every day after school!

But unfortunately, those two children became very overweight teenagers and one had really bad, pimply skin. I didn’t think they were so lucky after that.

One of my favourite things as a child was visiting my friend’s house for their Saturday night movie show.  We were each given a box of Quality Street chocolates. That for me was the height of luxury! My own box of chocolates to enjoy while watching a movie! And it wasn’t even my birthday.

As it turned out, my friend’s mum became increasingly obese and unhealthy and passed away when he was a teenager. Not so lucky either.


And then we got our first supermarket in Cape Town. And soon after that 1970’s instant, packaged food arrived at the tip of Africa.

My Mum was having none of it!
She’d grown up in wartime Britain, with poor nutrition and believed in the benefits of a nutritious diet to boost and maintain good health.

But while my health-conscious Mum was reading “Let’s eat right to keep fit” by nutritionist and health advocate, Adelle Davis and feeding us sprouts and courgette patties, I was nagging her for frozen burgers and instant pudding and specifically, Bird’s Angel Delight.
I’d tasted it at friends’ homes (Please Mum! So-and-So’s mother buys it. )
And we could even make it ourselves! Just add milk and beat it with the mixer and easy-peasy, there it was – a creamy, frothy, sweet, yummy pudding – I agreed it was heavenly, just like the packaging said!

 
"Angel Delight. Ask any kid." I definitely agreed! ☺

And as I got older, I indulged in terrible eating habits. Even though I’ve always loved and eaten good, real food, I also have a weakness for junk and sugar.
Some days I’d eat nothing but chocolate. And lots of it. I’m a chocoholic for sure!
And don’t get me started on cereal – I could easily crunch my way through a box of Rice Krispies for supper, or any of the sugar and salt-laden breakfast ‘foods’ that pass themselves off as healthy.

When we’re young, we think we’re invincible.
I wasn’t too bothered with what was going on on the inside. It was all about what I looked like on the outside.

But as I got into my 40s, I began listening to my body as it was crying out for some healthy attention!
Luckily I’ve always known about good nutrition, if not always practised it.
“As I see it, every day you do one of two things: build health or produce disease in yourself.“ ~ Adelle Davis
Nowdays I do make nutrition a priority. And I enJOY it!
I love my juices, soups, salads, veggies, seeds, nuts and fresh fish and chicken.  

And there’s no doubt that when you feel healthier, you feel happier!

It’s true that when we put the Good Stuff in, we get the Good Stuff out – we feel more energised and vibrant, and we’re able to cope better with Life and to do so much more.

But that’s not to say I don’t still love chocolates and pastries. And I do still enJOY them – but not in vast quantities, and not every day.

You can definitely feel the difference in your body and your mood when you eat REAL nutritious food! It’s like high-performance fuel for your engine.
When you drink a glass of water, or a freshly-squeezed juice you can actually feel it right away!
You can feel the Good Stuff zinging through your cells!

A large Green Juice to go - giving me some zing while I get my shopping done!
So here’s to eating and drinking more of the Good Stuff – to Rocking our Health and Happiness and Getting our Glow On!

Below are links to articles, advice and recipes for healthy eating and nutrition from some of my favourite wellness experts :


Heal Your Life:

Jess Ainscough The Wellness Warrior:

Steph Rice Fitness

With Love,





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SMILE, tune into the Good Stuff and Spread the Glow! ☺

How often do you smile to YourSelf?
Do you smile at strangers?
I’ve always been a smiley person. (I realise that I’m smiling as I’m writing this)

Smiling tunes us into the Good Stuff – it releases natural feel-good chemicals into our bodies - an instant shot of Happy, Healthy Goodness boosting every cell.
So the more we smile, the better we feel – isn’t that fab?!

Since I’ve been running on the promenade for the last few years, I’ve had fun playing a little game with myself and make it a point to smile and greet everyone I pass!
Some return the smiles and greetings. And some don’t
Over this time, I’ve started recognising some of the ‘regulars’ like myself, who are out on the promenade every day.
I still smile and greet the people who don’t greet me - and I have a little smile to myself when they don’t.
I don’t know whether they pretend not to see me, or maybe they’re so preoccupied they don’t notice.

But there are some people who just refuse to smile! Doesn’t stop me though.

About a year ago I noticed a new ‘regular’ on the promenade – a little old Chinese lady, who must be in her late 70’s at least. She’s fit and trim and she goes out for a brisk walk every day.
The first time I ran past her, I smiled and wished her Good Morning. She didn’t respond.
I kept going and smiled and greeted her every day. After a few weeks she smiled back! That made my day!

The next day she smiled and waved!
And the time after that she smiled, waved and giggled!
What a breakthrough! I was delighted.
Now we smile and greet each other every day – I always ask how she’s doing, although she doesn’t speak a word of English. And she giggles back and says something in Chinese. I love our friendly exchange!

A warm, friendly smile breaks down barriers and speaks every language.
But it’s not always acceptable in all cultures (especially between the sexes), as I discovered  on a camel trek in the Negev desert with the Bedouins.
We were told by our guide that as women, we were NOT to smile or to look the Bedouin men in the eye if we were talking to them.
I battled with this as it’s my natural instinct to smile and be friendly. But I didn’t want to get myself into trouble.

We each had a guide to look after us and our camels, and I wrapped a scarf around my face to hide my smile - although I’m sure it could be seen in my eyes.

That’s the thing about a genuine smile. It’s more than just moving your lips and showing your teeth. You see that a lot in photos – especially when people are posing for the camera, but the smile doesn’t reach their eyes.
I love smiling eyes. And you’ll notice that not many people have them.

A smile that comes from your heart is a genuine expression of Love, kindness, JOY and connection to each other.

The day that I left my ex-partner and drove away from our home to my new flat was one of the hardest and saddest days of my life. I remember it clearly.
I stopped at a traffic light and sat there with tears rolling down my face.  I noticed a guy in the lane next to me smiling at me. I didn’t return his smile.
“Please give me a smile”, he said.
“I can’t”, I replied. “I’ve just left my partner”.
So he showed me how it was done by pulling up the corners of his mouth with his hands. Bingo! That worked!

I smiled at him and giggled a little, through my tears.
He smiled back, clapped his hands and told me that had made his day!

I smiled some more – grateful for kindness and connection from a stranger – encouraging me at the difficult start of a new chapter in my life. 
"Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile, but sometimes your smile can be the source of your joy." ~ Thich Nhat Hanh
You never know how much your smile can UPlift somebody else. And smiling always make You feel good.
So smile to YourSelf, smile with the world and you’ll put a smile in your Soul and Get Your Glow On!

© Keren Su www.nationalgeographic.com

This gorgeous pic of a baby harp seal, taken by wildlife photographer Keren Su, never fails to put a smile on my face. And it’s made people smile all around the world. That really is Spreading the Glow!

With Love,

  

Create an Inspiring Vision for Your Wonderful Life!


 

Do you have your own inspiring vision of living your healthiest, happiest, most creatively fulfilling, productive and JOYful Life?

At this time of year there’s a lot of talk about making New Year’s resolutions and setting goals for the coming year.

Instead of setting the same old goals that don’t really inspire us, i.e. “must lose weight”, or “get out of debt”, or “make more money” – it’s a lot more FUN and more compelling to be driven and lead by an inspiring vision for Your Wonderful Life.

Have FUN playing an imagination game.


Visualise YourSelf living happily, healthily, creatively and JOYfully.

What does that look like to You?
What does that feel like?

Imagine it in JOYful detail:

1) What would I LOVE to do?
2) Who would I LOVE to do it with (describe the type of people you’d LOVE to live/work/play with)
3) What would I LOVE to have?
4) What would I LOVE to be?
5) How would I LOVE to express my creativity?
5) How would I LOVE to use my talents and gifts to be of service?

And then begin to put your intention into ACTION.
7) What can I STOP DOING right NOW that will bring me closer to my vision?
8) What can I START DOING right NOW that will bring me closer to my vision?

Have FUN designing the life that You WANT.
And then set your goals to create it.
Be inspired
to live your healthiest, happiest most JOYful Life – because You CAN!


And then set your intention to Rock your Happiness, tune into the Good Stuff and Get Your Glow On!

With Love, 





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Believe in Wonderful You and Get Your Glow On!

We all go through periods of self-doubt when we think that we’re not good enough. This often happens when we compare ourselves to others and think that we don’t match up.

I experienced a crisis of confidence recently. I was invited to a corporate function, as they wanted me to be the speaker at their next event.
The speaker that evening was a survivor of a terrorist bomb blast who had lost both his legs, and survived to become a long-distance runner.

As I listened to him I realised that I had always thought of myself as extremely lucky – and one my luckiest things ever was that I had been at the same restaurant as this guy - the night before!
And
I was looking after other people’s children (one of whom had snuck out of boarding school – but that’s another story! ☺
) so I still feel weak and hugely relieved every time I think about it!
But of course I didn’t want to tell that story. Especially after I heard what he’d been through. It was beyond harrowing. It wouldn’t have felt right to turn around and say how lucky I was to have been there the night before, after what happened to this guy!

And that’s when I started to doubt myself. And the self-defeating thoughts started going around in my head:
“Who wants to hear about how lucky you are? No-one cares how lucky you are. They want to know how you’ve overcome tremendous challenges. How you’ve survived bomb blasts or cancer or swimming in ice. Who do you think you are? What have you ever done that’s so impressive? What’s so inspiring about You?”

I confessed to a group of close friends that I didn’t think I was up to the task of being an inspirational writer and speaker.
Who would be interested in my story? I wasn’t a top CEO who’d built up a billion-dollar business. I wasn’t an ice swimmer saving the planet. I hadn’t survived some life-threatening situation. What did I know anyway? What inspiring credentials did I have to write a book, or stand up and speak to a crowd?

Thankfully, there’s nothing like good friends to help you get over yourself.
They reminded me that I inspire and encourage many people every day!
My writing, talks and workshops always get fantastic feedback!
And then I remembered why I do the work I’m doing and that my credentials are my gifts that I’m sharing every day – the gifts of insight, intuition, humour and tongue-in-cheek wisdom that support and encourage people to enJOY their Life’s journey.

“We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It's not just in some of us; it's in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others." ~ Marianne Williamson

I’ve made a folder on my computer called “Nice Stuff” which contains wonderful messages and heartfelt Thank You’s from clients and people who’ve heard me speak, or read my work – and if I find myself having a mini meltdown I open this up and read the messages to remind myself that I’m on the right track!

And when we are on the right track the Universe does kindly affirm it for us. Recently I gave a workshop which was attended by a woman who works for the ice-swimming, planet-saving Lewis Pugh – one of my personal heroes.
She came to thank me after the session and I admitted to her that her boss’s impressive credentials had me doubting my own contribution. She looked around the room and pointed out that I was succesfully achieving what I wanted to do.
And she sent me a follow up email to thank me for "facilitating a wonderful session".

Often the biggest challenge we have to overcome is the way we see ourselves!
We disempower ourselves when we compare ourselves to others and think that we’re not good enough.
We erode our confidence with our own self-doubt that stops us from expressing our unique gifts that we were born to share.
So what if there are a zillion people who do what you do. No-one else can do it exactly like You! 
We’re all travelling our own unique journey and we all have our own unique story to share.
"There are scores of people waiting for someone just like us to come along; people who will appreciate our compassion, our encouragement, who will need our unique talents. Someone who will live a happier life merely because we took the time to share what we had to give." ~ Leo Buscaglia
When we appreciate and honour ourselves and all that we are, we believe in ourselves and emPower ourselves to shine our Light and share our gifts.
"Every achiever that I have ever met says, My life turned around when I began to believe in me." ~ Dr. Robert Schuller
Don’t allow your own self-doubt to stop you from doing what You came here to do.
Believe in Wonderful You and Get Your Glow On!


With Love,





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