Why take Vitamin D Despite Living in the Sunshine State? Everyone Needs It!

Vitamin D LOW!

When my Vitamin D level results showed that I was borderline low normal, I was shocked!  I get a lot of unintentional sun just by living in the Sunshine State. And that's one of the reasons, I moved here.

But in 2019, I had a little spot on my nose that would not heal. The dermatologist removed a skin cancer from my nose and from my upper back.  [All those summers as a kid at the Portage pool, in the time before sunscreen. And yes baby oil with iodine was quite popular.]

So the folly of my youth caught up with me, and now I am careful to use an SPF of at least 30, and usually 50. So yay sunscreen, oh no low Vitamin D.  It can happen.

Why I am concerned

Low Vitamin D can lead to:

  • Osteoporosis (every woman of a certain age should be concerned)
  • Cancer (who knew- especially GI cancers)
  • Depression (is it low sunlight or low Vitamin D?)
  • Susceptibility to viral illnesses like COVID
  • Death (honestly no one should die from lack of Vitamin D)

Foods that...

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Lisa Cerasoli of 529 Books, Featured for May

Uncategorized May 10, 2022
 

It's MAY! and that means that I am featuring my dear friend, and fabulous book editor, designer, and cover creator, Lisa Cerasoli.

For the last two years on May 4th, because May the fourth be with you, Lisa helped me launch, Grounded in Chaos and Seven Mindful Questions into the world. 

Her company is 529 books, a tribute to her parent's wedding anniversary. If you check out her books, you will know that she values family more than anything. It's a compelling story.

Lisa and I really enjoy each other's company and it shows during our interview. We laugh and poke fun, especially when she tells me I am one of the more picky authors.  

I hope you enjoy this interview as much, as we did!

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From HR to Health Coach: A Healing Journey Featuring Vivana Collazo

 

This month, I am featuring my friend and colleague Viviana Collazo. Her stress from working an HR job led her to find a new path to better health. If you have ever been there — that's enough, I can't do this anymore — you will find her story so relatable.

We talk about getting to know one another through DoTerra, and Viviana's group The O.W.L.s. (Oils, Wellness, and Love). It's so uplifting when we connect with like-minded, proactive, health-oriented women. Along the way, Viviana shares her tips as a Health Coach, too. Starting from her Grandmother's yoga studio to becoming a Certified Oils Specialist, Mom, Business Owner, Viviana is an inspiration.

The Gift to Shift from The O.W.L.s is a "sampler" of goods and services in all aspects of health for one price! It would make a perfect Mother's Day Gift for the women in your life. Click here for more info

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Tossing and Turning? Insomnia is no joke! Top Tips to Fall Asleep

 

It never fails! I find myself really troubled by insomnia right around the full moon. Then I feel lousy during the day.

So last week was no different. And I gave myself grace to just do what I could without stressing out about not being able to do what I had scheduled.

I just recorded The Leadership Learns podcast with Peter Rabey from the X4 Group, where we spoke of the difficulties that leaders have with sleeplessness and how it can negatively impact daytime performance.

In this short video, I encourage you to listen to the details of each tip.

Sleeplessness is not a single problem. It really is three distinct problems:

  1. Falling Asleep
  2. Staying Asleep
  3. Early morning awakening

Tip #1:  Create an environment

If you are lying in bed for 20 minutes without falling asleep, just get up and do something. I usually clean something that I have been meaning to do, like sort the junk drawer.

Tip #2: Unplug from devices two hours before you want to fall asleep

Caffeine and other...

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My Top 5 Reasons to Learn to Meditate

 

Have you ever asked yourself why should I learn to meditate? ‍

Peter Raney, CEO of The X4 Group, asked me that very pointed question, "Lisa, why should I learn to meditate?" Peter is a high-power, hard-charging executive and has the podcast for leaders Leadership Learns Podcast. He is obviously juggling a lot of priorities.

After we finished our interview, I recorded this short video, where you can hear my top 5 reasons to learn to meditate (for skeptical, busy, Type-A personalities):

1.  You can be calmer

2.  You can be more focused

3. You can be aware of your life while it's happening and not lost in thought

This was truly magical, and happened to me twice at a Boz Scaggs concert. He's performing again in May, and I won't miss it.

4. You can be more connected to others in meaningful ways, and

5.  You bring into your awareness problems that you might be ignoring.

If you start with five minutes a day and make it a habit by blocking out the best time of the...

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Featuring Thom Walters from Zen Commuter

 

This month I am hosting Thom Walters from Zen Commuter as the Featured Practitioner. Thom is a 40-year meditator and we discuss several ways that beginners can learn to meditate.

One key takeaway is, "Any and everybody can learn to meditate." He reminds us that time spent in meditation brings a kinder more loving person to the world.

Thom shares how he sets his intentions for the day with three words. I also set my in the morning before I even get out of bed.  It's a habit that includes my prayers, and three important thoughts for the day.

Setting your intentions gives you a clear mindset and sets your day up for success.

Thom interviewed me for the Zen Commuter podcast episodes 1693 (the interview) and 1692 (excerpts from Seven Mindful Questions).

Listen to my interview with Thom here on Zen Commuter.

Listen to him read an except of 7MQ also here on Zen Commuter.

Find Thom at www.Zencommuter.com or [email protected]

And FREE Bonus! Thom has a free newsletter that...

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Grandma's Cow: How one Ukrainian faced down the Russian Army

This is a deeply personal story that has been passed down from generation to generation. I swear this is true because I was told this story by many of my older Great-Aunts and Uncles.

It goes like this. My family, the Niezniowskas were living on a farm in Ukraine, near the Russian border. The time is somewhere after the Bolshevik revolution. 

It was said that a Russian army camp was just over the border. At night, the Russian soldiers would cross the border and take what they wanted.

One morning Great-Great-Great Grandma Berta discovered much to her dismay that the beloved family cow was missing. Farm animals were so important to survival those days and with 11 children, it was an absolute necessity.  She said to her husband, I'm going to go get that cow.

Her husband begged and pleaded with her to not go. "If they kill you, how can I run the farm and raise the 11 children?" 

Well, Berta was not to be dissuaded.  She put on her boots, hat and babushka, threw a...

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"I'm in the moment right now." Aaron Donald's Mindful Superbowl Minute

#hail2pitt Feb 15, 2022

What do Aaron Donald, the LA Rams player who sacked Joe Cool at the end of the game ensuring the Rams the Superbowl victory, and I have in common?

First, we both attended the University of Pittsburgh. And well, Hail to Pitt-- the blue and gold shall wave forever.  

Second, he wanted to win so his daughter could play in the confetti. What a cute thing to say! And secretly I was rooting for the Rams for just this reason, and that Matthew Stafford, the quarterback, had gone through so much hardship in Detroit. 

I so admire someone who sticks with it, works hard, and then achieves their dream, only to savor every single minute of the success. 

Third, Aaron shut that reporter down when she asked about retirement saying this:

"I'm just in the moment right now," he said. "I'm enjoying this with my family. I promised my daughter this when she was 5 years old, to play in the confetti ... so I'm just in the moment right now. I'm going to enjoy this with my teammates, my...

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10 Days I'd like to Do Over Groundhog Day Style

Growing up in the tundra of the western Pennsylvania mountains, February 2nd, Groundhog Day, was a legitimate holiday. As a school kid, we so looked forward to the “prognostications” of Punxsutawney Phil. We anxiously awaited, would we have 6 more weeks of winter? Most of the time he did see his shadow-probably because the television lights lit up the gray Pennsylvania winter day. Sadly, it would leave us to trudge through 6 more weeks of boots, mittens, and stepping through crusted-over snow to get the mail from the common bank of mailboxes at the end of my yard. I can still hear the crunch, crunch under my rubber fleece-lined boots.  

But on those magic days like today, Phil would not see his shadow, would not return to his borrow, and we could count on an early spring. Now that I live in Florida, (I moved to the happiest place on earth) and it was warm enough for no jacket, I am a bit nostalgic today and this post reflects those sentiments.

It's a thing - On...

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A Tribute to Life and Teachings of Thich Nhat Hanh

This was not the post I intended to write today. Over the weekend, I learned that beloved Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh passed away, and I felt compelled to write this reflection.

My introduction to the teachings of Thich Nhat Hanh was through his book, Peace is Every Step. I remember reading it during a particularly difficult part of my life in 2017. 

I think it was my very first book on Mindfulness and it launched a several year journey into my formal study culminating with my Mindfulness Meditation Teacher Certification in January of 2021. I'm re-reading it now, with fresh eyes.

There are two  profound quotes that I often refer to during my busy day. The first started me thinking about what is was that I was doing, which clearly lead me into the Seven Mindful Questions.

1.  "We have a tendency to think in terms of doing and not in terms of being. We think that when we are not doing anything, we are wasting our time.

But that is not true. Our time is first of all...

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