1) Take a 20 minute time-out from an angry situation. Walk away, practice deep breathing to calm down your body. Come back to the situation once you are physically relaxed.
2) Take each thought captive (2Corinthians 10:5). Angry emotions are rooted in angry thoughts so learn to stop that angry thought and think on something more positive or good (Philippians 4:8).
3) Choose not to take offense. Even if offense was given, it is your decision to take or refuse it. Always err on the side of giving mercy to others.
4) When you are the target of injustice, do the unnatural but biblical thing-pray for that person (Matthew 5:44). I admit, this isn’t easy to do.
5) Choose to forgive. Because God forgave you, you must forgive others. It’s a biblical mandate (Matthew 18:21-22). Forgiveness is an act of obedience to God and prevents bitterness from forming.
Always remember. You are the only one who has control over your responses. An angry emotion may creep up, but how you handle it is what counts. The biblical directive is to be angry and not sin (Ephesians 4:26). The way we meet that requirement is to respond in a godly way no matter what the source of the anger. Paul sums it up in Romans 12:19-21 (NLT) ” Dear friends, never avenge yourselves. Leave that to God. For it is written: “I will take vengeance; I will repay those who deserve it,” says the Lord. Instead do what the Scriptures say: “If your enemies are hungry, feed them. If they are thirsty, give them something to drink, and they will be ashamed of what they have done to you.” Don’t let evil get the best of you, but conquer evil by doing good.”
Dr. Linda’s small book, Breaking Free from Anger and Unforgiveness has helped thousands of people respond to anger in a healthy way.
The popular notion that most people gain between 5-7 pounds just isn’t true. Truth is that most of us will gain about a pound.
The problem is that we tend to keep that pound and it accumulates throughout the years. According to the National Institutes of Health, that extra pound a year may be a contributor towards obesity. So don’t go diving into the desserts with abandon just yet!
One way to prevent holiday weight gain is to think about what it takes to gain a pound. You must consume an extra 3500 calories.
So do simple things:
1) Drink water instead of soda or high calorie drinks.
2) Stop eating after one helping. Don’t gorge yourself.
3) Avoid stress eating by doing non-food related activities.
4) Exercise if you eat a heavy meal. Research shows that there is benefit to exercise two hours after you have indulged. So if you overeat, hit the gym!
5) Struggling to find time to exercise with all the holiday busyness. Remember that a 10-minute brisk walk gives huge benefit. Now, get out there and enjoy!
For more tips to prevent overeating, check out Dr. Linda’s book, PRESS PAUSE BEFORE YOU EAT
Don’t go there in your thinking. Instead, get back on track and have a plan for holiday eating. Here are 5 quick tips:
1) Don’t eat standing up. Make it a habit to eat when you are sitting at the table and not everywhere else you may roam. Learn to associate food with sitting down for a meal. This one tip can eliminate picking at food in the refrigerator or on the counter. Tell yourself to wait until you sit down at meal times.
2) Stay out of the kitchen except for at mealtimes. How many times have you found yourself unconsciously wandering into the kitchen and opening cupboards and the refrigerator? The sight and smell of food cues you to eat it. Out of sight, out of mind.
3) Don’t go places hungry. This is just the beginning of the holiday eating season. You will see treats everywhere. and you will tend to overeat if you are hungry. Before you go out, to a holiday party, or to the office lined with treat trays, eat a piece of fruit and drink water. The less hungry you are, the easy it will be to have a small bite or resist the goodies.
4) Don’t cook/bake things that will be difficult to resist. If you tend to eat the entire batch of hot gooey brownies, don’t bake them. If sugar cookies are your favorite, bake another type of holiday cookie. Or if you do bake goodies you love, save one or two pieces and give the rest away. The idea is not to have those goodies left over begging you to eat them.
5) Replace food with some other relaxing or rewarding activity. For example, take a walk, listen to soothing music, etc. Whenever you have the urge to munch, do something else that will take your mind off eating. Distract yourself with activity.
For more help to deal with mindless and emotional eating, check out Dr. Linda’s book, Press Pause Before You Eat.
One of my favorite movies is an endearing foreign film entitled, Babette’s Feast. The setting is a small coastal danish town where twin sisters live a pious life as daughters of a Lutheran minister who founded a religious sect. The sisters live a rather austere life with little enjoyment. Enjoying food was frowned upon.
Babette, a political refugee, arrives in the town and moves in with the sisters. Unbeknownest to the sisters, Babette is an exquisite chef from Paris. Babette wins the lottery and uses all of her money to throw an elaborate feast for the church members. The elaborate feast loosens the uptight and bitter congregation and is enjoyed. Healing and reconciliation of many broken relationships begins to happen. Babette not only teaches the sisters that pious living does not have to include a lack of pleasure and enjoyment but also demonstrates that bitterness can be overcome by gratitude.
Have you thought about gratitude as a source of healing?
Giving is uplifting. Gratitude lowers stress in our physical bodies, boosting our immune systems. It combats depression, helps us forgive and cope better with disappointments. And like the story of Babette’s feast, gratitude brings life and healing.
Feast and enjoy. In the process, give thanks!
Suggested reading to uplift your spirit:
John Tierney, “A Serving of Gratitude May Save the Day,”The New York Times, November 21, 2011.
Gretchen Rubin, The Happiness Project, Harper Books, 2009.
G.K. Chesterton, “The Strangest Story in the World,” Trinity Forum Reading, 2009.