A longevity expert shares the exercise she does to live longer

Short-term stress isn’t always a bad thing. It prepares our mind and body for what we need to do in the moment. Chronic stress, however, is more extreme and consistent — and has toxic effects on your body.

Stress fitness: A dose of healthy stress

Stress fitness is a way of exercising the body with short bursts of stress. Studies show it can improve the health and regenerative life span of your cells, instead of slowly wearing them out. 

Compare drinking coffee all day with enjoying a single shot of espresso. The former is not so great for you and probably leaves you feeling anxious and jittery; the latter comes with mood- and health-boosting benefits. 

Stress is the same way. You don’t want to be stressed the entire day, but you do want to take short, intense “shots” of it that will initiate your body’s recovery process and train it to be more resilient to future stress.

How to practice stress fitness

I like to do my stress fitness exercises in the mornings a few times a week, or at least once a week. Here are two to pick from:

1. High-intensity interval training (HIIT)

Complete one round of high-intensity interval training, which takes roughly seven minutes. You can pick as many from the following list as you like, but keep it simple to start:

  • Push ups
  • Plank
  • Side plank
  • Jumping jacks
  • High knees
  • Rope jumping
  • Mountain climbers
  • Jump lunges
  • Jump squats
  • Burpees

Do each exercise for 30 seconds, followed by 10 seconds of rest. Repeat until the seven minutes are up. 

Find your edge of intensity with speed where you feel some discomfort or struggle. Welcome the discomfort and difficulty as part of the experience — don’t fight against them.

If you haven’t been active in a while, start with something accessible like slow to brisk walking. 

2. Turn the dial to cold

Studies have found that taking a quick, cold shower can decrease inflammation, increase longevity and improve your metabolism. 

At the end of a warm shower, turn the dial to cold. Can you stay under the stream for 15 to 30 seconds? A minute? Push yourself to your edge in the same way you would with exercise, then relax into it. This is key. 

To build resilience, match the shock of the stress response with a relaxed mind as much as possible.

Bonus practice: Heat it up!

Cold exposure turns on positive stress, and so does heat exposure, in the right circumstances.

While more research is needed, some studies have found links between sauna bathing and lower risks of cardiovascular issues and inflammation.

Your heart rate increases during sauna use, as if you were doing moderate exercise. If you have access to a sauna at home or in your gym, try sitting in it for 30 minutes. 

But be sure to check with your doctor first if you have serious health conditions.

Written by Elissa Epel, PhD

Source: Stock Markets, Business News, Financials, Earnings – CNBC

10 Best Hobbies for People with Anxiety 

The following 10 hobbies are fun activities that Sandra Glavan, Life Coach adopted to manage her anxiety. You don’t need to introduce all of these 10 activities, to relieve your anxiety.

One hobby is perfect enough.


1. Writing Expressively

I have intentionally listed writing at the top because I highly recommend to every person with anxiety to try expressive writing as a way of releasing their thoughts and emotions. 

Expressive writing is a highly effective anxiety management technique, and in my experience once you start to notice the benefits you are likely to get pleasure from engaging in this activity.

2. Listening to Calming Music 

Regularly listening to calming music can be a highly effective way to calm down quickly and ease your anxiety symptoms.

One study in 2017 concluded that

Music listening is associated with a decreased level of anxiety and distress.

This is one of my favorite hobbies for relieving anxiety, because I realized very early on that each time I would put on my headphones and listen to relaxing sounds on YouTube my anxiety would start to ease instantly.

I found this to be incredible, and putting on calming music became one of my emergency anti-anxiety measures.

3. Reading Empowering Books

A 2009 study at the University of Sussex found that reading can reduce stress by up to 68%, so this is a highly effective hobby for people suffering from stress and anxiety.

Reading powerful books by beautiful authors such as Louise Hay, Eckhart Tolle, Jen Sincero, Deepak Chopra, Bruce Lipton, Thich Nhat Hanh, Jack Kornfield, Shakti Gawain, and Wayne Dyer, helped me to get out a very dark anxiety hole.

I can’t thank these people enough for spreading such powerful messages and I have come to love their work so much.

Without exaggeration, I have read some of their books over and over again and I still pick them up now and read a few random pages when I need to be inspired.

If you don’t have the time to read, you can listen to all of these books instead by signing up to a platform such as Audible.

View all 10 hobbies for stress relief below:

Hint: Could you enjoy walking, yoga or eating? Click below and find out!

Source: 10 Best Hobbies for People with Anxiety to Calm You Down Instantly (amosuir.com)

‘Knolling’ Is ‘Kondoing’ for Maximalists

In short, “knolling” is an organizational method that involves arranging groups of tools and other everyday like objects into parallel lines or 90 degree angles. The result is a workspace that looks clean and symmetrical, where the items you use regularly are clearly displayed, instead of tidied away. Your stuff is not only accessible, but also aesthetically pleasing.

Photo: nadianb (Shutterstock)

You may have also seen Instagram posts featuring knolling—similar to the image above—where its more commonly referred to as “flat-lay photography.”

The name “knolling” is a reference to Knoll, Inc.: An American furniture company founded in 1938 that has manufactured chairs, tables, desks, and storage pieces from iconic designers and architects, including Eero Saarinen, Florence Knoll, Marcel Breuer, and Frank Gehry.

The organizational method dates back to 1987, when sculptor Andrew Kromelow and artist Tom Sachs were both working in Gehry’s studio. Kromelow coined the term, and Sachs popularized it.

How to use knolling to organize your space

In 2010, Sachs created a video for his employees titled “10 Bullets,” which he described as “the studio manual.” One of the 10 bullets is “Always Be Knolling,” in which he breaks down the organizational method into four steps:

  1. Scan your environment for materials, tools, books, music, etc., which are not in use.
  2. Put away everything not in use. If you aren’t sure, leave it out.
  3. Group all like objects.
  4. Align or square all objects to either the surface they rest on or the studio itself.


‘Knolling’ Is ‘Kondoing’ for Maximalists (lifehacker.com)

21 Tips for Taking Care of Yourself When You Feel Like Shutting Down

We’ve all been there: had a bad day at work, the kids won’t stop screaming and there is nothing in the fridge for dinner. It never ends. You feel like you will never catch up.

Life is full of surprises. We can’t go back and we can’t predict the future.

Photo: Kaylah Otto Via Unsplash

And sometimes, you forget to take care of yourself in the process.

You could be going through a tough time. Perhaps you’ve just had a recent breakup or did a sudden move.

You may also be struggling with anxiety or depression. If that is the case, it’s best to talk to a professional and get it properly treated. Causes of anxiety or depression vary from environmental to chemical.

Self-care should not be something you do once in a while when you’re exhausted. You need to get into the practice of taking care of yourself every day. This helps prevent burnout.

When you learn how to take care of yourself, you feel better about yourself — it shows. Your family and friends will also notice.

If you feel yourself close to shutting down from stress and burnout, here are 21 self-care tips to try.

1. Sleep on it

You really need a good night’s rest. This will allow your body and your mind to revive from the exhaustion you’re feeling.

2. Talk it out

Call a friend or family member and talk about how you are feeling. Wait for their feedback.

3. Take a self-care day

Call in sick, relax, and play during the day. Stay away from electronic gadgets — they will only make you feel like working.

Ok, that’s 3. How about 18 more ideas? Check them out by clicking the link.

Self-Care Tips For How To Take Care Of Yourself When You’re Suffering From Stress, Exhaustion, & Burnout Symptoms | Lianne Avila | YourTango

15 Ways to Respond to Bad News

If you hear something sad or disturbing that you weren’t expecting, don’t just say the first thing that comes to your mind. 

Take a deep breath and count to five. Then, think about what is most important to you at that moment. Is it making the person in front of you feel better? Is it expressing disappointment? Is it remaining professional? 

Whatever it is, choose the words that will help you achieve that goal. Here are a few helpful suggestions for how to respond to different kinds of bad news.  



 I never really knew how important Mental Health was.

I had always chosen to focus only on my physical health. I thought that as long as I was physically healthy to get up every day then I was perfectly okay.

But I was completely wrong.

And I didn’t realize it until one day I woke up and found myself completely trapped in the pit of depression.

I was so certain that I was fine, that though I was under a lot of stress – I was okay.

But I wasn’t – for a long time I haven’t been okay. But I made a mistake of choosing to ignore it and keeping all my emotions bottled up – thinking that they will all just go away.

It consumed me. It consumed me until I finally broke down.

Here are 5 Things I do that help Improve my Mental Health.

Practice and Embrace Gratitude

There are times where I find myself waking up to dark days, days where all I can do is lie in bed.

In the midst of those dark days, I found myself in awe of the love, support, and patience that I received from the people closest to me.


Forgiveness – one of the things that I find so difficult to give.

Falling into depression opened my eyes that the greatest pain that I have been carrying with me is caused by my inability to let go and forgive.

Growing up, I was constantly being compared. I was constantly told I was and will never be good enough.

Take a time out from digital devices

When I was still working a very stressful 9-5 job, my coping mechanism after a long stressful day was to bury myself in digital devices.

Sure, scrolling through Social Media distracts me from the bad day that I had but that’s all it does.

It just distracts me but it never really helps in making me feel better. It was just another channel for me to hide from the pain.

And after falling into depression, burying myself in digital devices was just making it worse.

Don’t get me wrong, using digital devices is not bad but sometimes we all need a break from it to go outside, breathe, and even do something that we love.

Try taking a mini-digital detox, go for a half a day without using them or even just for a couple hours and instead use that time to spend quality time with yourself or with the people that you love.

Go outside, take a short walk. Admire the sky, smell the flowers.

Do something that you love.

Trust me, those couple hours make a huge difference!

Don’t be afraid to let it out

This was one of my biggest mistakes.

I hated facing what I felt. I didn’t want to cry.

I had this mindset that crying was a sign of weakness.

But I could never be more wrong.

Crying is not a sign of weakness.

Be kind or do random acts of kindness

Kindness – a word that we constantly hear but is still very much undervalued.

One day I woke up to experience the lowest point of my life. I hit rock bottom.

I had to quit my job because my depression and anxiety just made it too difficult to continue.

I had zero savings, debt and no backup plan.

Yes, in short, I was a mess. I didn’t know what to do.

I had to start from scratch but this time it was more difficult, especially with my depression making even getting out of bed impossible.

And one of the things that really made a mark on me while experiencing those days, are the random acts of kindness that I received from the people closest to me and some even from strangers.

Whether you’re offering a helping hand or a shoulder to cry on and even just saying encouraging words to lift someone’s spirit, those things make so much difference.

And knowing that you helped make someone’s day, in a way also helps boost your overall well-being!

And remember, that each of us is going through our own battles, always be kind you never know what that person is going through.

I know that we all have different coping mechanisms, so it’s not guarantee that all of these will apply to you but don’t feel bad and don’t let that stop you. Identify the things that give you inner peace and happiness and start from there. You can do this!

Read the entire article and receive a printable planner from Ticked Think by clicking the link.

Source: 5 Things I did that helped Improve my Mental Health – Tickled Think

11 Simple Ways to Prevent the Post-Holiday Blues

It can happen to anyone: the blues, seasonal affective disorder, post-holiday depression.  After blasting ahead at full-speed, now you’re experiencing more of a crawl-like motion that’s beginning to get you down.

The post-holiday blues can be real with the emotional let-down that can happen after the festivities end.

Asian woman lying in bed late at night, young female sleep in bedroom at home. insomnia sleeping, worried and stressed conceptsJo Panuwat D/Shutterstock

The end of the holiday season and the long, dreary days of winter can be challenging for a lot of people—even those who don’t have clinical seasonal affective disorder (SAD) or depression.

“Somebody who’s just experiencing sort of like seasonal blues might have some good days and some bad days [similar to] somebody with depression,” says Elise Hall, MSW, LICSW, a clinical social worker and therapist in North Attleboro, Massachusetts. “Even though there might be bright moments throughout their day, [they’re] feeling pretty bad consistently.”

We’ve come up with some simple strategies to cope with those feelings during the cold (or not so cold) winter months by getting active, discovering passion projects and embracing the season.

Try a workout

Young woman in sportswear doing exercise during intensive circuit training in gym class. Females working out together in the health studio.Jacob Lund/Shutterstock

Whether at home or at the gym, exercise is a commonly recognized and effective mood enhancer, explains Hall. “Exercise just really releases natural chemicals in the brain that have an antidepressant quality to them.” Try a new class, or get outside for a run or walk if the weather allows.

Keep your resolutions realistic

new years resolutionsSam Wordley

Most people know what it feels like to choose lofty goals, only to come crashing back to earth when those things don’t happen. Keep focused on what you can attain, says Taz Bhatia, MD, an integrative health expert and author of Super Woman RX. “Unrealistic New Year’s resolutions can make someone feel like a failure, but small, definable goals can work to your advantage. It gives us something to focus on post parties, and it’s a great way to jump into the new year.” (Here are the top health mistakes people make in January.)

Go on a vacation

Girl takes pictures on the phone from the car windowMax4e Photo/Shutterstock

Get away from the stress of the short days and plan a trip—it’s good to have something to look forward to. “Vacations can also improve our mental health by reducing depression and anxiety,” according to the American Psychological Association. “Vacations can improve mood and reduce stress by removing people from the activities and environments that they associate with stress and anxiety.” Here’s why taking a shorter vacation is good for you.

Keep yourself busy with friends and fun

Another thing to look forward to? Time with friends, or self-care. “I think creating joy in the weeks that follow the holidays is key,” says Dr. Taz. “Book another dinner with friends, a massage, or start your self-care. Staying around positive people makes a difference as well.” Plan virtual Zoom dance parties. Or order the same food subscription box as your friend and cook the same meal together, virtually.

Click on the link for more blues-busting ideas:


Is Movie Sex Is Ruining Your Sex Life

When movies get hot and steamy, it can look picture perfect. You rarely see the mess—or even the laughs—that make a real-life physical connection so special. Actors with personal trainers, stunning lighting and directors carefully posing them make it seem easy.  “Some people feel inadequate, comparing themselves to movie stars, despite the fact that many actors look like the rest of us when they’re not made up,” says certified sex therapist Grace Landes. “We only see actors at their best, with their hair done, and in great clothes, or naked, in perfectly staged angles, and elegant lighting.” If viewing those svelte, stunning bodies tears you down instead of revving you up, you’re not alone. According to the Deseret News, men, as well as women, experience body image dissatisfaction, when they compare themselves with Hollywood hunks.

© iStock/stella_photo20

Everyday life doesn’t bleed into the movies

Not only are characters in movies better looking than the rest of us, but their homes are more fabulous too.  When movie scenes heat up in the bedroom, characters aren’t tripping over dirty laundry on the floor. When lovers slip into a bubble bath together on screen, there’s no grime around the drain.  Most of us have to juggle our sex lives with the rest of our lives, and that means planning for laundry, cooking, childcare and earning a living. Movie sex is unfettered sex, which is out of reach for many people. “It’s not rare for a couple to come onto my office and use a movie as a reference point for how they wish their sex life operated,” says Chris Donaghue, PhD, author of Sex Outside the Lines: Authentic Sexuality in a Sexually Dysfunctional Culture. “Hollywood’s depiction of sex in movies is typically centered around big, bold acts of love and attraction. Characters in film have no boundaries, whereas typical couples have finances, careers, and family, which may all limit the magnitude of their sex lives. In film,” he adds, “none of these constraints exist, and it can make the average, American couple feel negative about their own sexuality.”

All it takes is a sidelong glance

Ever hear of foreplay? Most Hollywood directors haven’t. Characters on film are always ready, all the time, to jump in the sack. They don’t need to get in the mood, shave their armpits, or reach for the K-Y jelly. They never lose their erections prematurely, feel pain during intercourse, or have post-menopausal dryness. Manual stimulation? Unnecessary. Connecting emotionally? A waste of time. All movie characters have to do is see each other from across a crowded room, and boom, it’s orgasm city. This Hollywood-like depiction of sex couldn’t be farther from the truth, and leaves many people feeling inadequate and wondering what’s wrong with them.

You’ve got baggage

Hot Hollywood sex often centers around a couple that has just started their sexual relationship. Rarely do we see established couples gloriously intertwined in decadent sex. In a movie if someone gets hurt in a relationship they typically move on, but we know real life can be more nuanced. These feelings tend to invade the bedroom, damaging many people’s sex lives.

No glove, no love—unless you’re on the silver screen

In movies, condoms rarely make it into sex scenes. In real life, this omission can result in sexually transmitted infections (STIs), unwanted pregnancy and even increased levels of sexual pressure if one partner feels uncomfortable proceeding without a condom. 

That broccoli you ate made you a little bloated

Human beings have human bodies and sometimes, those bodies produce less-than-sexy smells, sights and tastes. Morning breath, post-workout sweat, and the occasional gassy oops may not fit Hollywood’s definition of hot, but these all-too-human vulnerabilities can bring us closer to our partners and help them see and love us, warts and all. They may even help us to love ourselves a little bit more, when we can let go and be ourselves, rather than a celluloid version of who we think we should be in bed.

Article source: msn.com/en-us/health/other/6-reasons-movie-sex-is-ruining-your-sex-life

The top 6 childhood complaints heard from adults in therapy

Childhoods can range from severely neglectful/abusive to nearly idyllic, but there are some overall themes that emerge when people discuss what they wish they or their parents had done differently.

photo: fizkes shutterstock

1. No idea how to be a good husband/wife

This is actually a fairly common regret that people feel when recalling their own childhoods.

2. No guidance about career/life

This isn’t just a complaint from clients whose parents were not highly educated themselves. It is just as common among people who had very high-achieving parents who were fairly uninterested in and disconnected from the child’s life. A parent who goes to work 60 hours a week in a great career may say literally nothing to their child about the child’s own strengths, interests, and goals.

3. Discomfort around expressing emotions

Some families are very stunted in how they express emotion, and that can have a long-range impact on their child’s ability to verbally express their feelings, or even be aware of their feelings, in adulthood.

This can even lead to alexithymia, particularly in males. In adulthood, partners can get frustrated with what appears like emotional withholding, but it is really a genuine inability to express feelings, derived from a childhood where emotions were just never discussed.

4. Invalidation/insults

Teasing kids, particularly sensitive ones, or telling them that their feelings are wrong or crazy, can lead to long-term low self-esteem and trust issues when these kids grow up. Many boys in particular are angry at fathers who teased them mercilessly under the guise of “just kidding around.”

Sarcastic, cutting, or just mean remarks about children that are said in a cool voice as though they are just observations may have an even worse impact than words that are screamed in the heat of the moment, when a child may be able to convince himself that you were just angry.

For example, a child will remember a parent saying, “You’re really not very attractive” for his whole life, whereas some kids will be able to discount a father yelling “You idiot!” out of anger when the child broke a window.

5. Authoritarian parenting

When a child is not allowed to do what the majority of his peers are doing, whether this is dating, going to a sleepover, or staying out till 4 am on prom night, the child is likely to resent this forever. Parents may think that a child will one day, “Boy, I’m glad my parents cared enough about my safety to give me a 10 pm curfew when they knew everyone else had 11 pm,” but I’ve yet to see that in my practice.

Note that authoritarian parenting means cold and strict, whereas authoritative, which is associated with positive outcomes, means warm but firm, and flexible. The third type of parenting, permissive, or warm with zero rules, has even worse outcomes than authoritarian because it makes a child feel uncared for.

6. Making a child scared of the world

For some, this is a fear or hatred of men learned from a mother. For others, it is being paranoid of everyone who isn’t in your same religion, because parents taught you not to trust “strangers.” For still others, it may be the fear to gain weight or throw anything away, or being sexually or emotionally intimate with partners. Fear leaves a mark on kids, and it is easy to teach and hard to unlearn.

Think about which of these regrets and complaints are relevant to your own upbringing, and which you may be unwittingly fostering in your own kids.

No parent can be perfect, nor is perfection the goal, but it is very useful to examine your own childhood when parenting in order to ensure that you don’t automatically repeat the very patterns that you wish you never learned in the first place

Article by Dr. Samantha Rodman Whiten, aka Dr. Psych Mom

source: yourtango©

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