These colorful small bits of fruit pack a big source of flavor and nutrition for us. Berries are tiny powerhouses. There are so many different reasons to eat berries. The number one reason, which you have probably heard before, is that berries are filled with antioxidants. We need and want antioxidants because they are protectors from disease. They include vitamins A, C, and E. Secondly, the beautiful color of berries come from flavonoids. We need and want flavonoids because they help ward off inflammation, cancer, and even heart disease. Finally, berries contain resveratrol, which also fight cancer, prevent inflammation, and prevent clogged arteries. Grapes are packed with resveratrol, so wine drinkers like to use this claim to warrant their drinking.
There are other reasons berries should be on your to-do list. Berries help make new neurons, in a process called neurogenesis. They also clear out the garbage in our brains. They help get rid of toxic proteins. Having too much of these proteins has been linked to Alzheimer’s disease. Research is seriously looking at the connection between berries and suppressing Alzheimer’s disease. Berries might even help with weight loss. These colorful fruits seems to be linked with a reduction in weight. Strawberries have been shown to lower cholesterol and help fight off heart disease and diabetes. Cranberries help type 2 diabetics stabilize their blood sugar levels. Compared to other types of fruits, berries do have more nutritional value because they are higher in fiber, complex carbohydrates and flavonoids. The different colors of the different berries mean they have different health benefits so it’s recommended to eat a variety. For example, blueberries contain anthocyanins which help with memory. Raspberries contain ellagic acid, which has anti-cancer properties. Goji berries have been linked to stress reduction, better athletic performance, better sleep, and weight loss. Acai berries might slow the aging process because of their high antioxidant content. Bilberries help with diabetes and improved vision. Strawberries contain high amounts of phenols which protect us from disease. Blackberries are very high in vitamins C and E. Cherries contain quercetin and ellagic acid which promote cell and tissue health.
Did you know that berries are very easy to grow? Add some color to your garden and to your diet. A few berries with breakfast, as a nice snack, as a topper for some of your dairy products or cereals, in a smoothie, or used in a recipe, are all great ways to incorporate this fruit into your daily routine. Don’t fall victim to eating too many, because of course they do contain sugar. Stick to a small handful or ½ cup. These tiny power houses get the job done with just a small dose.
Here’s some other writers I’m supporting check them out:
There are 24 hours, 1440 minutes, and 86400 seconds in one day. That is the same for every single human being. Feelings of being too busy, pressed for time, and in a rush, are felt my so many of us, more than we would like them to. Two people with the exact same work schedule might handle their time very differently. As a trainer, the excuse of time is far too overused. Here are 10 reasons why time can be either on your team or against you.
1. Your wake up and bed time. The morning doesn’t have to be so rushed if you woke up a little earlier. Feelings of exhaustion can fade when you get to bed at a decent time. Hitting snooze only makes the adrenaline rush and stress of getting ready quickly pile up.
2. Lack of organization leads to chaos. Can’t find you shirt, can’t find your keys, can’t find your phone…. all that search time is time waisted.
3. Budgeting your time. Prioritize what must be done followed by what can be further down on the list. Schedule wiggle room for traffic and red lights. Plan for what will take more time than others.
4. Trying to multi task can lead to chaos. The brain just isn’t ready for that. Plus, you feel overwhelmed and distracted by so many different agendas.
5. You want everything to happen fast. Well guess what, the line at Starbucks doesn’t allow cuts so you just have to wait like everyone else. Fast means rushed and rushed means stress and frustration.
6. Procrastination. Cramming too much into too little time is extremely stressful. Then time is the opponent you are trying to beat.
7. You don’t value your time. Being productive when no one else is watching is important too. Get ahead. Don’t let other people dictate you being late or you not meeting your priorities. Your time is valuable.
8. You have a now or never attitude. Sometimes the printer just doesn’t work. Sometimes the internet is slow. Don’t get angry, move on to the next task.
9. You opt for convenient. Well fast food will quickly lead to more trips to the doctor. Take time to cook, meal prep, and nourish your body.
10. Next time. Not today. But tomorrow keeps passing by. Time doesn’t stand still. Pretty soon it’s over and you don’t get it back. Don’t wait. Action defines time.
Can you relate?? Time passes and that is a certainty in life that never changes. Some days it flies and some days it lags, but it ticks the same and at the same rate no matter how we perceive it. What we do with our time has a lot to do with our personalities, careers, responsibilities, and interests. The excuse that we don’t have enough time feels like an attack when we are all given the same amount of time each day. Therefore, you are your time keeper so take ownership of what you do, how you use it, and who you spend it with.
For some other interesting articles check out the following sites: #writerssupportingwriters
A common type of pain associated with the sciatic nerve affects may people, particularly in their low back and left leg areas. Sciatica usually affects this one side of the body starting at the low back, running through the thigh, and then all the way down the leg. It can even reach the toes. This pain can be a shooting sensation or tingly feeling. It becomes worse from sitting. Then when the person stands the pain is intensified. It feels best to just lie down or to be walking. This pain choses to either be constant or can be infrequent and come and go. It affects mostly middle-aged adults as it a condition that typically develops over time. It can get worse over time, so attention should be provided when this type of pain arises.
The root of the lower lumbar spine and lumbosacral spine can become irritated. This could be caused by a muscle spasm that took place in the glutes or the lower back. Being overweight, sleeping on a bad mattress, wearing high heels, and not regularly exercising can cause discomfort to the sciatic nerve. It can also be caused by lumbar spinal stenosis which occurs when the spinal canal becomes narrowed in the lower back. A herniated disc can cause this pain. This causes the nerve to be pinched. When the piriformis muscle is irritated, it can pinch the sciatic nerve. This is the muscle right under the buttocks. Spondylolithesis can cause this pain which occurs when one vertebrae slips over another one. Pregnancy can cause pressure to the sciatic nerve. Degenerative disc disease can also be a culprit which is when the discs are starting to breakdown and this wearing leaves less cushion between the vertebrae. Tobacco use can cause increased degeneration.
Most times sciatica will go away over time without surgery. Heat and ice can help the pain. Pain medications can be used to help with inflammation. This can also be done by having an epidural steroid injection. Other treatments include seeking the help of a chiropractor to adjust and manipulate the area to alleviate pressure on the nerve. Acupuncture can also be used. Massage can help too. Stretching, low impact aerobics, and resistance training to help the surrounding area, can all be used to improve sciatica. Physical therapy is another approach.
There are two types of surgery that can be done when the above options have been exhausted. A microdiscectomy can be done to remove the disc that is pinching the nerve. It has been known to be 90% effective for patients. Doctors only consider this approach if the sciatic pain has persisted for over 6 weeks and none of the alternative measures have worked. Lumbar laminectomy can be done when the pain is from lumbar spinal stenosis. In this case, the bone or disc removed that is pinching the nerve.
Living with pain can be difficult, depressing, and hinder your enjoyment of activities you once performed. Pain is your body speaking to you to seek help, so when that one side of the body is talking to you, don’t wait for it to get worse before you allow it to get better. Be proactive for your health, move your body for medicine, and aim to live comfortably in your body as pain free as possible.
We all have our vices. We all have habits we have hung onto forever that we are well aware need to be given up. Somehow along the way, time has flown by, life took over, and we cycle through the stages of giving up our vices then slipping back into our old ways. You can’t deny, “Old habits die hard”. Maybe understanding the implications of these habits on weight gain will be an eye-opening deterrent. So let’s take a look at how smoking cigarettes, alcohol consumption, and drinking soda, can impact our fitness journeys.
A popular idea is that cigarette smoking helps control body weight. For example, cigarette advertisements from the 1930s suggested that women should, “Reach for a cigarette instead of a sweet” (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3195407/). Furthermore, “Young adults who are trying to lose weight are 40% more likely to smoke cigarettes. Because smoking is often thought of as a way to control appetite and weight, quitting smoking means the absence of this control strategy” (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3195407). Rather than eat, one might have a cigarette. I read, “Tobacco companies modified cigarettes to give them appetite suppressant qualities as late as 1999, revealed a 2010 study by Swiss researchers, published in the European Journal of Public Health” (http://www.livestrong.com/article/515745-cigarettes-weight-loss/). The fear of weight gain after quitting is why most smokers don’t want to stop, regardless of all the other health consequences smoking causes. Nicotine does speed up your metabolic rate, so quitting would affect this. However, from an exercise stand point, nicotine does affect your cardiovascular performance and output. Therefore, you are not able to perform at your best. The “smokers cough” impairs one’s ability to really step out of their comfort zone and challenge their cardio. As a personal trainer who believes in lifestyle changes that last, smoking is a habit that over time most clients like to eliminate as they start to see and feel the changes in their body towards a healthier self. But let’s not forget the other side effects of smoking that could also impact overall health such as lung cancer, heart disease, stroke, and COPD.
Alcohol is a very popular part of our culture and is a social activity many take part in. Alcohol does have an impact on our body composition. Simply put, “Unlike macronutrients such as carbohydrates, proteins and fats, alcohol supplies what nutritionists often refer to as empty calories: calories without nutrition. To make matters worse, it is the first fuel to be used when combined with carbohydrates, fats and proteins, postponing the fat-burning process and contributing to greater fat storage” (http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/drobson194.htm). Alcohol has twice as many calories as carbohydrates and protein. And of course when our state of mind changes from alcohol, our decision making is impaired and well…. now the entire bowl of tortillas chips is gone or as us southern Californians tend to do – stop and get a carne asada burrito since it’s late and we are intoxicated. Other research goes on to say, “ Further, studies show that alcohol temporarily inhibits “lipid oxidation”— in other words, when alcohol is in your system, it’s harder for your body to burn fat that’s already there. Since eating fat is the most metabolically efficient way to put fat on your body—you actually use a small amount of calories when you turn excess carbs and protein into body fat, but excess fat slips right into your saddlebags, no costume change necessary—hypothetically speaking, following a high-fat, high-alcohol diet would be the easiest way to put on weight” (http://www.elle.com/beauty/health-fitness/advice/a2451/alcohol-calories-does-drinking-cause-weight-gain-410239/). Everything in moderation as they say.
Ok, I know an ice cold soda tastes amazing and totally quenches your thirst, but those few moments on the lips aren’t worth the resulting effects on your waistline. A study by the American Geriatrics Society found that, “People who drank diet soda gained almost triple the abdominal fat over nine years as those who didn’t drink diet soda” (http://time.com/3746047/diet-soda-bad-belly-fat/). Extra pounds in the midsection has health consequences: “The kind that pads the abs from the inside, called visceral fat, is associated with increased cardiovascular disease, inflammation and Type 2 diabetes” (http://time.com/3746047/diet-soda-bad-belly-fat/). A lot of people are misled by the low calories these drinks contain, not taking into consideration the artificial sweeteners and chemicals that add taste.
The answer: We have to decide to choose the lesser of two evils. In the long run, the initial weight gain that could occur after quitting smoking, far “outweighs” the long term health consequences. And when one decides to adopt a healthy lifestyle, these pounds will disappear over time with the changes. If we are able to have the self-control and drink on occasion, we are can find a balance with the caloric intake that alcohol adds to our day. Limiting alcohol to weekends is a common tool for this. Finally, I don’t have anything positive to say about soda haha. Just let that one go. SMALL changes ARE changes; so start by cutting back and taking it one day at a time. Better yet, go exercise to distract yourself from wanting to smoke, drink, or have a soda.
Germs are everywhere. Bottomline. They can be passed from person to person, surface to person, on handles, knobs, countertops, light switches…. ALL over. Each day, we are surrounded by germs everywhere that we go. Some places are more ridden with germs than others, so be ware, be clean, and always wash your hands. Here is a list of 10 germ prone environments to take precaution when encountering:
- Workplace – The desks, phones, keyboards, any workspace shared with other accumulates germs.
- Restaurants- There are many workers, many surfaces, and lots of food handling. Who’s to say that all workers are in fact washing their hands often and after the restroom?? These places do undergo inspections, and this information is publicly available if curious which locations to avoid.
- Public restrooms – Sitting on the toilet seat, touching any handle, and the choice for hand washing, leaves the bathroom quite germ filled.
- Swimming pools – Chlorine doesn’t always kill all the germs. It is important not to let pool water in your mouth and to rinse off before and after entering. The same germs that cause diarrhea are those most passed in these waters.
- Airplanes – Germs fester in these closed quarters where the air is shared. The bathroom and any surfaces in the cabin carry germs. The trays and arm-handles also have germs. Disinfect any areas you will be touching.
- Day care centers – Diapers are everywhere, and they contain fecal matter. Germs can be passed among the shared toys. Children also like to put these toys in their mouths.
- Schools – Kids might not put items in their mouths anymore, but it’s hard to know if everyone is washing their hands. Sickness can easily spread especially with shared desks and in the cafeteria.
- Movie theatres – Colds and the flu can easily pass in these closed quarters people are sharing for a couple hours. The germs from previous movie watchers are also on each seat.
- Your own home – All the kitchen surfaces, handling of meats, bathroom trips, sponges, handles, and light switches constantly used by everyone leads to germ sharing. Hand washing at home needs to be upheld as well.
- Hospitals – Sick people, medical devices shared, increased exposure to more germs, and compromised immune systems are an everyday occurrence. Although these places are well kept, that doesn’t mean its patrons aren’t sharing their germs.
Hand washing prevails and helps prevent sharing more and more germs. A healthy community washes their hands and knows that sharing isn’t caring when it comes to germs and YOU spreading them.
There are four main types of blood: A, B, AB, and O. Blood type is determined by antigens found on red blood cells. Each letter refers to a type of antigen. A blood type is also called a blood group. Which type a person has is determined by the genes they get from their parents. Every person’s blood is unique because they have their own set of antigens and antibodies. Most people have 4-6 liters of blood in their body. The cells that float in this liquid are called plasma. In 1901 the Austrian scientist Karl Landsteiner discovered that there are in fact different blood types. Before that, doctors thought that all blood was the same.
Red blood cells deliver oxygen to different tissues in the body and remove carbon dioxide. White blood cells destroy bad invaders and fight infection. Platelets help the blood to clot.
Blood type is based upon two different antigens: A and B.
Group A has the A antigen and B antibody.
Group B has the B antigen and A antibody.
Group AB has A and B antigens but no A or B antibodies.
Group O doesn’t have A or B antigens but has A and B antibodies.
Rh factor determines if a person’s blood is positive or negative. Positive means you have Rh and negative means you do not. Rh is another type of antigen. Therefore, a person can have A positive or A negative, B positive or B negative, AB positive or AB negative, or O positive or O negative blood.
Blood type is important because is two different blood types mix, they can clump and this can be fatal. This can cause a toxic reaction. During a blood transfusion, the donor and recipient must have the same blood types. Blood types don’t always have to be an exact match to be safe. In fact, type O has been referred to as the universal blood type because it used to be thought that it could be donated to anyone. That is not always one hundred percent true. However, type O is considered the safest to donate in times of emergency or when there is limited supply.
Recently there have been claims that people can eat to their blood type to achieve better weight loss results. There is not enough scientific evidence to this claim yet.
Blood is part of all of us and knowing our type is important in case we ever are in a crisis or can help someone out who is in one. When we can safely share and help one another in times of need, but blood is not meant to be freely shared. If you don’t know your blood type, ask you doctor and find out. You never know when this information can come in handy.
Time dictates so many aspects of our lives. When beginning this Blog idea, I thought to myself how much time controls my day from the seconds, minutes, and hours. And of course in relation to this piece of writing, it is the measure of our age. The aging process is unique to each of us. But ultimately, it does impact our life decisions, and that includes our exercise choices. So let’s take a look at the relationship between aging and exercise.
Naturally, activity level changes when we get older. As one of my long time clients put it, “Man, I don’t just roll out of bed anymore ready to go”. This isn’t to say that one is less motivated, rather, the energy expenditure levels are different. This is mainly due to the fact that, “A major fraction of total daily energy arises from resting metabolism, and it is thus important to note that resting metabolism decreases with aging, by about 10% from early adulthood to the age of retirement, and a further 10% subsequently” (http://www.sportsci.org/encyc/agingex/agingex.html). Adding to this, “One reason is the loss metabolically active muscle mass and parallel increase in metabolically inert depot fat. In later old age, there may also be some overall reduction in cellular metabolism” (http://www.sportsci.org/encyc/agingex/agingex.html). When muscle mass decreases, this can cause body fat to increase. Keeping the excess pounds off can get harder. As such, “Your body fat can increase by up to 30 percent, which leads to a loss of lean muscle tissue and can affect your sense of balance. This can make it difficult for you to perform exercise activities you once enjoyed” (http://www.livestrong.com/article/418037-how-does-age-affect-exercise/). We need to continue a strength training program in order to not let our bodies replace muscle with fat at the rate it would like to. Not to use a scare tactic but here you go: “Strength peaks around 25 year of age, plateaus through 35 or 40 years of age, and then shows an accelerating decline, with 25% loss of peak force by age of 65 years” (http://www.sportsci.org/encyc/agingex/agingex.html).
Exercise becomes so extremely important as we grow older. We tell ourselves that we used to be able to eat whatever we wanted and still look fabulous, but now the odds aren’t necessarily the same anymore. We have to take care of our bodies, and we can help prevent certain diseases with exercise. For example, “Your bone mass begins to decline once you enter your thirties, putting you at risk for conditions such as osteoporosis. If you are concerned about developing this condition, perform more weight-bearing exercises, such as running and tennis. Regular cardio activity will also help you control high blood pressure and high cholesterol, as well as ward off type 2 diabetes and some kinds of cancer” (http://www.livestrong.com/article/418037-how-does-age-affect-exercise/).
As I always say, there is no “can’t”. That word is not allowed in my studio. There are modifications for so many exercises, and I will be by your side as we run, walk, or crawl to get it done. If we don’t use it, we lose is, right?? Not every day is a peak performance day, but we do we can. As long as we are active, we are being productive to our bodies. Running a marathon might not be in the future, but what about making to your training session twice a week and keeping that commitment to your body?? Goals should be realistic. Remember the glory days fondly, but know that you are keeping your mind and body in better condition and sticking around longer for your family and friends by maintaining an exercise program. Fitness is a way of life and the destination involves progress not perfection so just keep going one rep a time, one day at a time, and with every age of your life.
BLOG 371 CANDY CONSUMPTION
Oh that sweet tooth so many of us have. Dessert is a tradition, a celebration, a reward, and a comfort. Having a treat seems so perfect in that moment, but it can certainly come back to haunt us on the scale. But people are eating candy every day, not just on Halloween, at birthday parties, or special occasions. Candy is at every check-out stand, sold year-round, and now comes in extra-large servings at a reduced price. Hence, let me shock you with some candy information in this Blog…. enjoy. Let’s start with the fact that, “1 in 4 American adults will choose to have at least one piece of candy every day of the week” (http://brandongaille.com/42-awesome-candy-consumption-statistics/). And I do see this in the food journals, and yes, the fun sized, mini pieces do count. Just having a couple even a few days per week does add up because, “The average amount of calories in a fun-sized candy bar: 60-100” (http://brandongaille.com/42-awesome-candy-consumption-statistics/). There’s something about that 3 o’clock hour that a little sugar just hits the spot.
The candy industry continues to thrive and we continue to buy. We certainly keep them in business: “65% of the American candy brands have been around for more than five decades” (http://brandongaille.com/42-awesome-candy-consumption-statistics/). Here are some other statistics that might interest you (or disgust you): (http://brandongaille.com/42-awesome-candy-consumption-statistics/):
The United States candy market is expected to reach $35 billion by 2025.·
1.) 51% of overall candy consumers purchase seasonal or holiday candy.
2.) The average household will spend $44 just to purchase Halloween candy.
3.) Americans buy over 120 million pounds of candy for Easter.
So what types of candy are we buying?? Here are the top sellers: (http://www.foxnews.com/leisure/2015/05/19/america-favorite-chocolate-candies/)M&Ms come in at number one, coming in at $406.7 million. They’ve been around since 1941 and interestingly, “M& Ms, which were names after their inventors Forrest Mars and R. Bruce Murrie, were given to GIs serving in the World War II, and the chocolates even went on a space mission in 1982” (http://www.foxnews.com/leisure/2015/05/19/america-favorite-chocolate-candies/). Reese’s comes in at number 2, generating $398.9 million. Fun fact: “The company claims if you were to line up the Reese’s sold annually, they would wrap around the earth several times” (http://www.foxnews.com/leisure/2015/05/19/america-favorite-chocolate-candies/). Snickers come in at third, generating $386.2, and “More than 99 tons of peanuts go into making over 15 million Snickers bars each day, and each bar contains around 16 peanuts” (http://www.foxnews.com/leisure/2015/05/19/america-favorite-chocolate-candies/). Good old Hershey’s is next and generates $249 million. Apparently Hershey has bought several of the other brands so these numbers don’t do the company overall justice. Finally, there is the crispy covered Kit Kat, generating $201.8 million.
Well, if I want to stay positive I would say that we are providing many people jobs in the candy industry. But don’t even get me on a roll with how much sugar children consume. That is for an entirely new Blog. Sugar affects our bodies and well-being and truly impacts our functioning. I like the recent quote I found by Benjamin Franklin, “Few have died of hunger. Many have died of eating”. You are all sweet enough so put that candy down. Don’t have it on display at your house or in the office. Reward your fitness journey successes in other forms. You didn’t earn candy just to turn around and have to burn it back off!!!!
BLOG 370 STRETCHING
Often times, stretching takes a back seat to our exercise routines. Yet, on our fitness journeys we need to take about 10 minutes per day to stretch. We mainly focus on the exercise portion of our journeys at the studio, but I want to emphasize the need to take a few moments at home to stretch. This can become a morning ritual to wake up the body for the day, an activity during T.V. time, or an evening de-stress and winding down routine. Not only will this help us with our recovery, but there are many benefits to stretching. The best part is that we can stretch anytime, anywhere.
So why is stretching a must?? To begin, “Stretching may help you improve your joint range of motion, which in turn may help improve your athletic performance and decrease your risk of injury” (http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/fitness/in-depth/stretching/art-20047931). Blood flow to the muscles is also increased, therefore, helping to reduce soreness. As we age, our muscles do tighten and our range of motion decreases. Stretching is a preventative measure for this and by doing so we can make many of our daily living activities much easier. Picking up the newspaper from the floor doesn’t have to be such a daunting task each morning, or reaching over our shoulder to tuck our shirt tag in doesn’t have to be so hard. Other benefits include: “Reduce muscle tension, increased range of movement in the joints, enhanced muscular coordination, increased circulation of the blood to various parts of the body, increased energy levels (resulting from increased circulation)” (http://www.sparkpeople.com/resource/stretching_benefits.asp).
We naturally stretch all the time. When we have been sitting too long we might stretch our back out when we stand up or move our neck around after being at our desk too long. It does feel good to stretch. We live in the go, go, go mentality so taking the responsibility and time to stretch can be just another added task to our day that gets pushed aside.
It is important to practice good safety and techniques when stretching. Having knowledge of the different types of stretching is also beneficial. So let’s discuss the main forms of stretching. Static stretching is the most basic form and can be described as, “Static stretching means a stretch is held in a challenging but comfortable position for a period of time, usually somewhere between 10 to 30 seconds” (http://www.humankinetics.com/excerpts/excerpts/types-of-stretches). I prefer dynamic stretching which might include activities like our hill walks, jogs, high knees, butt kickers, etc. Passive stretching involves my assistance, or one can use a strap or wall in which there is a source of resistance. This method does allow one to get past their “comfortable” range of motion. My personal favorite, which I have a love-hate relationship with is self-myofascial release (SMFR) stretching with the foam roller. Your muscles contract due to the pressure of the foam roller and tension is released. It hurts so good. There are other, more complicated forms that are used for athletes such as proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation (PNF) stretching or active isolated stretching.
Recently, I started a stretching routine myself because of my activity level and I want to be sure I’m at peak performance each day. I have started with 2 days per week just dedicating 15 minutes solely to stretching. I have developed greater body awareness and it feels good to relieve the tightness and soreness of my main target areas. Would I rather just go to bed?? Of course, but this practice has helped me to wind down and I feel a lot less tension especially in my quadriceps. As always, I want to practice what I preach so this is a new goal for myself too. Longevity is important, so 30 minutes each week stretching is well worth it to me. Take a moment to evaluate your stretching and let’s work together to make a new habit of this practice. As we know, this is a lifestyle process so to achieve optimal results we have to take care of our bodies and stretching is an important component of our fitness journeys.
We all have conversations with ourselves. In fact, when we talk to ourselves, we are rationalizing, comforting, and reflecting upon our lives. This is a healthy habit, and some of us even find ourselves doing it out loud. You aren’t crazy and you aren’t strange, we just don’t often tell others about our inner chats, so we don’t even know that everyone else around us is doing it too. It’s our little secret with our mind. Didn’t your mom used to say that if she didn’t talk to herself then no one would listen?? There are a number of reasons why talking to yourself is beneficial.
1. Organizing your thoughts: You are making your game plan, your blue print, your strategy to the upcoming. It helps you prioritize what needs to be done and let go of the small things that shouldn’t carry weight. We are better able to logically understand that we don’t need to make a mountain out of a molehill.
2. Self-reliance: You are able to ask yourself how to solve the problem. Our inner voice helps us analyze a situation. We can come to conclusions independently.
3. Helps with stress: Your mind wanders and races as you worry and try to juggle life. Talking to yourself can be a pep talk or help you rehearse what you are going to do. This helps you face tough situations and increases confidence.
4. Eases loneliness: You don’t feel so alone when you have debates with yourself or feel like someone is listening and even talking back to you.
5. Allows you to determine your goals: You start to visualize the situations playing themselves out and talking out the lines to the play. This helps you decide what you really want to go after and accomplish.
6. You gain insight about yourself: What you say to yourself can reveal a lot about your inner desires. Your perspective when alone can be different compared to face to face with someone else because you are your only influence.
7. Increases self-esteem: Giving yourself compliments and encouragement makes you feel good and proud. You re-enforce to yourself that you can do something or that you should be proud of yourself.
8. Increases memory: We all talk to ourselves when we are trying to find something we have lost, like our car keys. We have to re-trace our steps and talk ourselves through what lead to the moment when the keys disappeared.
9. You feel more in control: Sometimes we need re-assurance or to hear someone else confirm that we are okay or doing something write. What better person than yourself.
10. You can increase your intelligence: When you rehearse, practice, organize your thoughts, and plan ahead, you aren’t scrambling in the moment when the situation arises. You self-talk a lot when taking a test, so all you have to do is re-call that conversation you had with yourself when you were studying. You are reproducing the talk.
Go ahead and jabber away to yourself. The benefits “speak” for themselves. And hey, you aren’t wasting your breath either.