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Growth Following Grief: Living After Loss – ROL Blog 9

Have you loved and been loved? Truly loved? If so, you've probably lost as well. The type of loss we're discussing is permanent in the form of the death of a loved one. We all live Life with the certainty of death, but bereavement may at some point touch you or someone you care about, causing painful and debilitating grief. The intensity and duration of the grief is unique to each of us. It's typically proportionate to the closeness of the relationship we had and the circumstances surrounding our loss (like their age, health, whether death was anticipated, and their [...]

2018-10-30T12:17:54+00:00June 6th, 2013|1 Comment

The Present of Presence – ROL Blog 8

Here's a scenario that happens way too frequently: You're dining out at a restaurant and see a family of four already seated. The dad is on his smartphone, the mom is texting on hers, and each of the kids has their own cellphone, iPod touch, or electronic gaming device…complete with earbuds.* None of them is interacting with the other person who is right in front of them. They are physically present but absent in all the ways that matter. When you're driving, waiting in line, or even having a conversation with someone, are you fully there? There seems to be [...]

2018-10-29T07:25:55+00:00May 9th, 2013|0 Comments

Fighting Fat Over Thirty: DIET or Lifestyle? – Blog 7

Like too many American women, I've been on a diet more days of my adult life than not. That's because -- by nature -- I'm a self-diagnosed "carbaholic." I love potato chips, french fries, pretzels, bread, biscuits, croissants, pizza, pasta, cake, cookies, brownies, biscotti, crepes, and ... (forgive me; I can go on and on about my favorite foods!). Ahem. Let me correct my last statement: I used to "love" delicious, highly caloric foods, particularly those full of carbohydrates. I've learned that I should only love what has the potential to love me back and that, I'm sad to say, [...]

2018-10-29T07:44:22+00:00April 19th, 2013|0 Comments

Step Into an Improved Relationship – Blog 6

It's Springtime, so for many lucky folks that means love is in the air. We can each remember the fresh, new start of a budding romance: Everything is so easy. But what about the couples who've passed the Honeymoon period? Those folks who've been in a committed, monogamous relationship for over two years. Research shows that after two and a half years with the same partner, both partners start making less of an effort. And less. And less. But why? If we spring into romance, how do we slide out of it? Do we get to know the "real" [...]

2018-10-29T07:53:59+00:00April 7th, 2013|0 Comments

Emotional Spring Cleaning: Forgiveness – Blog 5

It's Spring and time to clean out your closet. Yes! the one with all the shoes, but this Real Optimal Living Blog Number 5 is really talking about your "internal closet:" The closet holding your guilt, anger, and pain. We all know that forgiveness is free, but it comes with a cost that may include humility, reflection, reliving the pain, and developing insight. It involves the release of powerful -- sometimes crippling -- emotions in favor of peace and serenity... and the ability to move on. What if you'd like someone to forgive you? Ask yourself if you are truly [...]

2018-10-29T08:03:03+00:00March 31st, 2013|0 Comments

Contentment: Love Where You Live – Blog 4

How many people do you know who are content? Genuinely happy with their lives overall. Are you? I am, but I had to learn to be. And that's not to say that every aspect of my life is a bowl of cherries, but I distinguish contentment from complacency. The former has to do with being at peace with the circumstances as they exist (although it doesn't mean that there's no room for improvement). The latter involves being pleased with the situation without being aware of its associated defects (implying a lack of insight). Few people can legitimately say that every [...]

2018-10-29T08:10:31+00:00March 24th, 2013|0 Comments

Is Fear Really a Choice? Blog 3 – Social Fears

Fear. Another four-letter word. I spent too many years being limited by the fear of something. Should I list them all? I'm "afraid" (get it?) you'll think I'm nuts, but a few include: Being afraid to perform in front of others (although I was a cheerleader -- groups were okay, but not giving a speech or dancing or going to social events solo or dining alone), taking tests, being spoken to harshly, disappointing others, and doing things that had more than a slight risk of injury (like riding a bike with no hands). Okay. You get the picture, so let's [...]

2018-10-29T08:18:22+00:00March 18th, 2013|0 Comments

New Insights on Battling Procrastination – Blog 2

Procrastination. It should be a four letter word. Let's make it one: W-A-I-T. I consider myself an expert on the topic because it's one of my biggest vices. You'll agree with me when you notice that the last blog I posted was a year and nine months ago. That's the same amount of time it took my parents to have my sister and me (we were born a year and nine months apart). There's so much I could've -- and wanted -- to say to you in those 21 months, but hey, I spent my time doing -- or not [...]

2018-10-29T08:26:55+00:00March 17th, 2013|0 Comments

Real Advice for Real Women – Blog 1: Getting Through Painful Experiences

"When you're experiencing something painful, keep your eyes open. Closing them merely intensifies the pain." We all experience pain. What varies is the type (e.g., physical, emotional, both), duration (e.g., short- or long-term), frequency (e.g., single event, episodic, recurring, chronic), and intensity (e.g., acute, dull). The sources of pain are as diverse as all the possible colors that can be created from red, blue, and yellow. I personally abhor pain, but most people do. None of us can avoid it. But we can control our reactions to it and our feelings, thoughts, and behaviors that result from it. Today I [...]

2018-10-29T08:31:09+00:00July 1st, 2011|0 Comments