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Doing Life Together

Doing Life Together

Business Mind? You’ll Go Nuts Reading This!

posted by Linda Mintle

squirrelA very nice man at the VA told me that my dad couldn’t get his claims reviewed because of the sequester. Our government needs to save money. Sorry about your 92- year- old WWII Dad.

I asked, “Because this is their only option?” Then I realized, Hey, he is only the messenger!

Like many of you, I run a small business. I understand cutting business costs. The federal government will make you crazy! Maybe the new DSM V should add Federal Government Neurosis! as a new diagnosis!

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1) Did you know that the NFL, NHL and PGA are non-profit organizations? Don’t choke on your popcorn, but these organizations qualify for major federal tax exemptions. I guess because they bring in so little money! Only $184 million from the NFL in 2010 for example.

2) With a growing obesity epidemic, the federal government allows food stamp users (SNAP) to purchase junk food. It is estimated that approximately 2.5 billion dollars will be spent on foods that are not nutritious. Items like sugary drinks  contribute  to obesity –another tax payer burden! Yet, more than 2 billion dollars will be spent on these items in a year according to a study by Yale Rudd Center for Food Policy & Obesity. So the kids who need good nutrition are often getting junk food and sugary beverages with tax payer dollars. Then we turn around and allocate more money to treat the obesity that results from poor eating habits. Seems like a good place to look at reform instead of creating new programs.

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3) My favorite–$325,000 National Science Foundation (NSF) grant to build robotic squirrels. A real need, especially when our vets can’t get services. Save the Squirrels!

4) 2 million annually to fund phantom government grant accounts. PHANTOM is the key word here. The accounts are empty and have expired. Hey, for a small fee, I’ll close these accounts or better yet, get some out of work college business graduate who can do it!

5) The Prom Video Game. So needed and funded by a grant from the National Science Foundation. My dad can’t get his claim paid but my daughter can relive her prom glory everyday through playing PROM WEEK!

I could go on, but I can’t. It’s too depressing and makes this small business owner a little nuts! Hey maybe the squirrels could help!

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Three Ways to Stop a Marriage from Divorce

posted by Linda Mintle

upset coupleEd and Jane were having marital problems.  Jane was at the point of walking out. Ed rarely spoke to her. This once loving couple was now thinking divorce.

So what happened?

Like too many couples, Ed and Jane waited too long to go to marital therapy for help.

Jane feels she tried to raise issues, but Ed was not interested. He had a history of avoiding tough topics.

Ed didn’t like the way Jane talked to him but never brought up the issue. He often felt overwhelmed by her intensity. Instead, he allowed resentment to build up and push him away emotionally.

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Both spouses were turning away from each other rather than towards–a dangerous move as it eventually leads to emotional distance. And emotional distance is the number one predictor of divorce.

So here are three take-aways for all couples: 

1) When you are upset, deal with the issues immediately and don’t allow them to simmer and grow. As painful or difficult as it is to talk about problems, do it.

2) If the problems are bigger than you can solve, see a marital therapist. One of the reasons couples don’t work things out when they do go to counseling is because they wait too long. By the time they see a therapist, they have emotionally checked out. Marital therapy is highly effective when couples go early and ready to work.

3) When problems come, turn towards each other (and God) and not away. Turning away creates distance and also tempts you towards unhealthy emotional connections with others, or engage in unhealthy behavior.

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Do You Have Bat Wing Deformity?

posted by Linda Mintle

armsAs summer approaches and more of us are going sleeveless again, we can certainly see the jiggle that comes with aging or not working out in the gym.

Yes, we would all like to have the arms of news anchors who seem to have a penchant now for sleeveless dresses. But most of us have to spend hours in the gym to fight the effects of either laziness or plain old aging.

Plastic surgeons call this jiggly, loose skin on the back side of the arms, “bat wing deformity.”

Nice, right?

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What may surprise you is that arm lift surgery is on the rise. According to an article in USA TODAY, this surgery has increased 4,000% in the past decade. That is a lot of arms being operated on!

But here is the good news. The increase isn’t driven by our need to emulate the First Lady or look like celebrities on the red carpet. Yes, we are obsessed with youth in our culture and people are getting this surgery to look younger. But the increase is due to the surge of weight loss surgeries. When a person loses a significant amount of weight with procedures like the gastric bypass, the weight drops off but the skin remains. This extra skin, or “bat wing” doesn’t go away with the weight loss and can be removed surgically.

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But before you schedule your consult, know that this surgery is expensive and can leave significant scarring from the elbow to the armpit. In addition, all surgeries carry risk and this one is no exception.

So if you just have flabby arms due to a lack of exercise, start working those arms. Get in the gym. It is safer and cheaper. If aging is the culprit, embrace it! Most of us have the bat wings at a certain point in life! The question is can we accept the changes of aging without feeling the pressure to always turn back the clock?

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Binge Eating? 8 Tips to Help You Stop

posted by Linda Mintle

1 BINGEIn the past three months, you have binged on food at least 12 times. You hate that you do it and always feel guilty after, but something inside you compels you to do this (A binge is when you consume a lot of food in a short period of time).

Well, you are not alone. About 3% of the US population does this, and qualifies for the diagnosis of Binge Eating Disorder (BED). And according to the The National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, as many as half of all binge eating patients have a history of depression!

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Here is why: When you binge eat, you gain weight. So you feel out of control with your eating, you gain weight and get depressed over your body shape and weight. Then you binge again and feel even worse, heightening the depressed feelings  It’s a bit of a vicious cycle. And for some people, depression led them to binge eat in the first place.

Here are helpful tips to help stop those binges.

1) Get rid of binge foods in your home. Yes, you can drive to a store or fast food place but that takes more effort than reaching for food in the pantry.

2) Don’t skip meals, especially breakfast. Skipping meals is a set up for a binge. You simply build up too much hunger and then overdo it. Eat small meals, snacks throughout the day to curb appetite.

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3) Don’t diet. The idea that you “can’t” have foods just makes you want them all the more.

4) Figure out what sets off your binges, what are the cues or triggers? This is very important because the triggers are usually emotional and relational things, not hunger.

5) When you feel the urge to eat, do something else. Replace eating with another behavior. It might not be as enjoyable as eating that hot fudge sundae, but you are breaking the habit of eating when you do something else.

6) Phone a friend. When you have the urge to binge, it helps to have a support network of people who can be there to help you say NO to food when you are not hungry.

7) It’s not all or nothing. If you give in to a binge, life is not over. Simply start over. Everyone deserves a do over. Acknowledge the slip, forgive yourself and get back on track. Changing behavior takes time!

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8) Finally, if the depression does not ease up as you get control of the food, see a therapist. Or see a therapist to begin with so you can look at the roots of the depression and get help. Depression is treatable.

 

Finally, if you are feeling very out of control and want additional help, see an eating disorder specialist who can help tailor a program of help for your needs.

 

 

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