Detox Your Life from Toxic People – Become a Person Emanating Positive Vibes

positive vibes

positive vibes

“Great minds discuss ideas, average ones discuss events and small minds discuss people.”

I read this quote by Roosevelt a couple of years ago. Since then, I have got hooked on to it. While I discuss people in this post, please do not label me as the one with ‘small mind’. This post is written in general interest of your well-being.

Explaining the Term ‘Toxic People’

‘Declutter’ is the new buzzword. People are decluttering their wardrobe, kitchen, lifestyle, and what-not. However, you might not have yet decluttered your life of toxic people. Chances are that you are not even aware of the phrase ‘toxic people’. Toxic people are not those who have chemicals in their handbags – no, not at all. But, their acts and behavior are such that you feel burdened by their presence in your life.

Why ‘Toxic People’ are Harmful

And the counter question should be are ‘toxic’ people beneficial in any way? The word toxic is enough a suggestion that they are harmful to your life and lifestyle. Have you wondered you feel bogged down after talking to someone – they never have anything good to say – such people are toxic and not good for your health! If you have a toxic person in your office, chances are you will not be able to climb the ladder of professional success. If you have one in your family, you will not be able to form good relationships with other members, whereas if you encounter one in the apartment where you stay, it will become difficult for you to reside here after some time. This is because toxic people carry venom in their hearts and even on their tongues. They are neither able to see you happy nor they let you be sad. Toxic people are like barriers on a highway – they can become responsible for your accident.

  • Toxic people can turn out to be detrimental to your health
  • They can make your relationships sour with other people
  • Such people can act as a barrier to your professional success
  • They induce negative vibes around you and in your workplace
  • They can also hamper your intelligence and power of thinking

How to Handle Toxic People

Be Smart

It is like handling a hot coal straight out of fire or alternatively, an ice cube straight out of the refrigerator. To handle a toxic person in your life, you need to be very smart. You need to end all relationships with the person, without making the person realize it. The process needs to be slow yet steady. Firstly, you need to set limits on such people. If you find that the person is constantly complaining and does not focus on the solution, then you need not discuss your problems with such people.

Stay Alert

Learn to change the topic. The conversations with toxic people often revolve around the problems they face or how bad other people are. If you do not want to participate in useless discussions, learn to change the conversation and direct it to something that benefits you. Whenever you face a toxic person, be aware of all the happenings. Stay alert and aware of everything that is going on. Do not fall into their trap. The words you utter or things you do can be used against you. It is better to stay out of those conversations and things that will give such people a chance to begin all over again.

Set Limits

Do not let such people participate in your life decisions. They overpower your life and try to make decisions for you, which is not required. This not only hampers your ability to think but can also harm you. Firstly, do not bring up topics that require advice. Even if they come up, do not take their advice. And lastly, even if these people give their advice, you use your own mind to make decisions. Stay out of the chaos that toxic people bring in your life.

End Negativity

Toxic means negative and so, toxic person means the one who induces negativity in your life. Whenever you feel that something is not going right in your life, find our whether you have such people in your group or around you. Try to get out of their circle to end negativity and pessimism in your life.

Remain Happy

Toxic people do not have a habit of praising anyone. They think less of every situation. Even if you climb Mount Everest, they will criticize this act in some way or the other. Do not be dependent on others for your happiness – their opinions do not matter. Stay happy for your own self.

How Not to Become ‘Toxic’ Yourself

It might happen that you become a toxic person yourself in some way or the other. Here are some things that can help you stay away from being the negative one.

Express Gratitude

Every time you say ‘thank you’ or express gratitude, you attract positivity from the person and the environment around. A ‘thank you’ means that you are noticing the efforts that people are putting in for you and you appreciate their kindness.

Converse Clearly

Every person has its own way to think and express emotions. Do not expect others to understand you in an instant. It is required to make clear conversations. Mean every word that you say and own the entire conversation. Do not lie ever instead pass on an effective message to others.

Convey Your Feelings

When you see someone wearing a nice dress, even a stranger, do not shy away from compliments. When you say something nice to someone, the person feels good and confident about you and the also the world around him or her. The world is not that good as it used to be. Saying inspiring words and complementing others is a good act.

Cut that Clutter

Have you ever been in such a situation when you said something wrong about a person and the person was standing just behind your back? Take this as a cue by the universe to stop gossiping. Gossiping is quite toxic and will stain positivity around you. When you talk behind someone’s back, you send wrong signals to the person, who might end the relationship with you if this continues.

Execute Tasks

Pending tasks and responses pack up your to-do list. And as the list becomes long, you might forget to do one thing or the other. This might land you in some trouble. Instead, execute tasks as and when they arise. This clears up the aura around you.

Cleanse Mind

Mind cleansing is a great activity. When you hold up something bad about others, your entire energy is wasted in what that person did to you. Instead, think about good things that people have done for you and you will feel good and your mind will feel light.

Think Good

You need to think good and positive things about your own self and also about others. Do not get into the habit of finding faults in others’ behavior and acts. Do not even keep finding faults in the way you look or feel. Instead, focus on finding good features and habits of your own and others. However, do not overdo it.

To Conclude

Toxicity is like a bad odor. It remains in the environment for a long time, making it difficult to breathe. It is your onus to end the toxicity in your life and also that of others. Live and let others live to the fullest. Let us make this world a tad better, a bit happier, one act at a time.

Why New Year Resolutions are a passé? Practice and Perfect Simple Short-term Resolutions for Personal Growth

Practice and Perfect Simple Short-term Resolutions for Personal Growth

Practice and Perfect Simple Short-term Resolutions for Personal Growth
Unlike my friends, I had calm and composed December. I had taken a sabbatical from work and cocooned in an Indian town that did not know what Christmas is. I did not party till wee hours on the 31st and slept early with my toddler. And I even woke up early in the morning to witness the rising sun and experience the chill of the winters. As I am not fond of making New Year resolutions, I had a regular January 1st.

For me, every single day of the year should be begun with zest and fervor to achieve the unachievable. Not just me, many of my friends believe that New Year resolutions are a passé. They are defunct. In this age of busyness and surprises thrown in every hour of the work, sticking to age old New Year resolutions is just not possible.

“I do not believe in New Year Resolutions”

While talking to one of my friends who works in a corporate, I was enlightened about the concept of new age New Year Resolutions – that to not resolve on a yearly basis. Instead, many people around the globe are resolving on a weekly or monthly basis. This gives them more freedom and flexibility. Do you know that people are more stressed at present than they were ever? This is because they are competing 24 x 7 – they are in a rat race. The competition is to look good, travel more places and post the pictures on social media, to lose weight and fit in a one piece, to earn more and even to gift more. And amid this competition, they have to also compete to set New Year goals. This becomes an additional work – to set new goals, to try to achieve them and then to stress on the fact that you were not able to achieve them. Instead, chuck the plans of making New Year goals. Instead, relax and lounge on your sofa to think of better things to do in this world.

“I Resolve to Be Better”

I have a better suggestion for you. Instead of wasting your December in hunting for a New Year resolution, why not break down this habit in easy and simple steps. Yes, resolving is good for you but do not make it an annual affair. Instead, plan to resolve on a monthly basis or even a weekly one. I had recently read a post on social media. One of my friends had resolved to stay happy for 100 days. She used to find a source of happiness everyday – be it her pet, nature, food or anything simple. This friend posted her source of happiness and a picture regularly for 100 days on her profile. And when I talked to her, she was actually very happy by doing this. She had found a unique way to resolve for her betterment.

“Real Resolutions of Real People”

I talked to some of my friends from different strata. These people are those who do not believe in New Year resolutions but make one regularly, may be quarterly, monthly, weekly or even daily. Based on their innovative responses, I have compiled a list of the resolutions that are very unique.

“Will save electricity, water and money”

Now, how many people resolve like this? I have come across many resolutions, but most of the people avow to improve themselves in the coming year. So, when Deependra Gupta, belonging to healthcare industry, told me this, I felt good. With limited renewable sources of energy available, people like us can make a difference in the world by resolving not to waste them. People who are not able to afford water or electricity do this on an everyday basis. However, we choose to use these resources negligently as we can easily pay for them. Such resolutions that are taken for others or the Nature in general, not only make the person feel good, but the community in general. This resolution had a butterfly effect – even I started using light and water consciously.

“Will not buy new clothes”

When I heard this, I was quite amused. Aayushi Tulsiyan, working at a corporate, avowed not to purchase clothes. This is so true for many people and I hate saying this, especially girls or us, women. With so many types of clothes available, we have been experimenting with our styles and adding a dimension to our fashion sense. So, when earlier wardrobe staples were just blue denim, a white shirt and a saree, now it is much more. Now, you got to have a little black dress, a floor length skirt and a mini one as well, corporate wear (even if you are not working in one), bikini (even if you are not going to flaunt it), a scarf / stole / duppatta and the small list has become a big one. When she resolved not to buy any clothes and not to be starry-eyed on seeing the offers, I seconded her. Filling your wardrobe is not required. Instead, mix and match the clothes till they start looking dull after several dry-cleanings. Do not feel ashamed in repeating the same outfit to the party. When Duchess of Cambridge can do this with élan, we can too.

“Will reconnect with lost friends and family”

While going through the posts on our social media wall, how many of us actually stop and stare and share our thoughts on the pictures, views, status of our friends? If we like the picture or the person, we ‘like’ it. But we do not call them saying ‘Wow’ you had an amazing holiday, tell me more about it. And more than this, how many of us are in touch with our school teacher or granny’s sister’s son, the way we used to be. So, when Milinda Natu, Professor of Visual Arts, revealed her resolution, it felt pretty good. She says, “I am going to try to get in touch with all those who I knew ages back but have lost touch with – like reconnecting with the lost ones; some of them lost over 30 years back. I already did that with 3 people and it was an emotional journey. They were ecstatic that I should have taken the trouble and the new bond is just amazing.” Getting in touch with people who were a part of our BAE – Before Anyone Else Group is a great step. This makes the world one happy place.

“Be Myself”

This is the shortest resolution that I heard this year. While this seems to be simply written, it is more complex than ever. In the world wherein everyone is pretending to be someone else, wherein competition is a way of life, wherein happiness seems to have become limited to social media likes, being yourself is a difficult task.

When Prassana Hullikavi, former Deputy Director of Symbiosis Institute of Media and Communication and a learning consultant, revealed her resolution of being herself, it seemed to be the right thing to do. She says, “I will be myself, pause and look at the world gently.” This is not just a New Year Resolution, which will be forgotten next year. But this will become a way of life and have a ripple effect on everyone around her. Maitri Paliwal, a professional, seconds to this. She says, “I wish to live the way how my soul wants to i.e. my desire to write, to dance, public speaking, take out time for myself from all the routine activities”.

“Will achieve my everyday goals”

Isn’t this superb? Instead of living one full year in New Year Resolutions, Dr. Pradnya Madkaiker Ajmera, a practicing dentist, says, she will live one day at a time. This way, we can enjoy every moment. She says, “My resolution this year is to focus on fulfilling small goals everyday other than one big goal for the entire year. This will help me live each day positively and happy.” Even Srikant Nair avowed to “Have a meaningful day.” With nothing planned for tomorrow, we think of making the most of the present – the day we are going through. By rushing to fulfill our goals for the next day or next week, we forget that there is this present which is slipping out of our hands speedily. Living for today makes you happy and content and this is what this goal is all about.

“Will try not losing my calm early”

When Kiran Rao, an Indian screenwriter and director remarked about rising intolerance in the country, her concern was met with the reaction that she had expected – intolerance and hate comments again. I feel not only India but people in general have become intolerant. We are not able to understand the point of view and context in which something is said. Everything is being taken on face value. While we blame each other for this, it is our onus to be tolerant. Even if one person corrects his or her attitude, things can be corrected on a greater level. So when Veronica Peer Patki, a professional, avowed to be more tolerant as a resolution, it made great sense. Her calm demeanor will surely have a positive effect.

Sneha Bagrecha says, “I will explore one city every month” and Shruti Nair says, “I will keep my mind filled with happy thoughts and invest time for gardening!” Vikram Parashar says, “Knowing the purpose of my existence, with a smile.” Ajay Vaishya says, “I will read one book every ten days” Interesting, isn’t this! From longer annual resolutions, people have moved on to shorter ones that can be achieved and analyzed.

How to Practice and Perfect Simple Short-term Resolutions

On New Year’s Eve, I read a witticism. It said, “Attention Regular morning walk-ers!! There would be rush on the roads in the morning for the first week. This will eventually die down.” This explains that the enthusiasm of New Year resolutions dies down in the first week itself. The things that seem important at night do not seem to be so important when you wake up in the morning. The woes of the previous day and the promises made are forgotten after a long night’s sleep.

Instead of making long-term annual resolutions, if you go for short-term ones, it will be easy for you to achieve them. Plus, there are many benefits as well. How? Read on…

Bite-sized Resolutions

This is the age of short and sweet. Are you able to eat the entire Bruschetta at once? Nah, you answer. The same way, keeping and achieving shorter bite-sized resolutions are easy to achieve.

Flexibility to Change

If you have resolved to “To go for a walk this week”, but you are not able to do so, you can easily alter the resolution to something else the very next week. This way, the burden of not achieving New Year Resolution will not haunt you.

Time Saving

Unlike wasting your December in deciding what to resolve for in the next year, you do not think much when you have to avow weekly. You resolve based on your present habits and requirements.

Get Creative

You can be creative while thinking of new resolutions. You can include others and make a resolution buddy, wherein both of you can play a catalyst to achieve each other’s resolutions.

A Transformed Person

So, in the first month, you avow to start donating something every week. In the second month, you promise yourself to take your parents to dinner. The benefit is that in the second month, you continue donating because you were happy doing it. And in the third month, you donate, eat out with your parents and even start teaching to less-privileged kids. This way, you will be a transformed person at the end of the year.

If you are strict with your New Year Resolutions, this post might seem funny to you. However, keeping and achieving promises made to ourselves is tougher at times. We can change our lives for the better through shorter resolutions that are fun and achievable as well. Happy Resolving!

Learn the Art of Listening to Your Body and Benefit Your Health

Learn the Art of Listening to Your Body and Benefit Your Health

I like watching my toddler do things. Little kids are aware of their bodies more than we are, especially toddlers. They are curious, they are able to relate and they like to question each and everything. Sometimes to my surprise, my toddler makes me aware of things that I am not doing right. In the mayhem of life, we adults often lose the art of listening and questioning. We go on with our daily rut. This is because we think that questioning and listening will waste some of our precious time. Often, we do not question because we fear that we might be proved wrong. And if we are proved so, we will have to do everything again, thus resulting in waste of time.

Learn the Art of Listening to Your Body and Benefit Your Health

The Present Age and the Crunch of Time

The life of toddlers is easier than ours. They can speak and hence, they are able to express. They listen to their bodies and some toddlers even communicate to elders regarding this. Suppose, if they are hungry or tired or want to pee or even sleep, they will communicate freely. But, if you are thinking that you do the same thing, then you are wrong, especially in the present age. With severe crunch of time, we are not able to prioritize accurately. At times, people give more importance to task at hand than lunch. Some people keep delaying the requirement of essential check-ups to save some time and utilize it for some other ‘important’ tasks. When a person is not able to prioritize his health, the health suffers and it costs much more time and money than it was being saved primarily.

The Art of Listening to the Body

To fall in love with yourself is the first secret to happiness – Robert Morley

You might not be aware of the fact that your body talks to you. And if you are trying to make a humor out of it saying that it talks through your mouth then you are wrong here. Your body speaks in ways that you will not be able to recognize if you are not in sync with it. Learning to listening to the body is an art. It is not a God’s gift, it can be, but it needs to be cultivated. People who wish to learn this art first need to learn patience. You need to love your body, every part of it, to be in one with it. You need to sync your thoughts with those of your body’s to be able to learn to listen to it.

Why Listen to your body?

Is it really necessary to listen to your body? Why is it important to listen to it? I mean that my mind is not separate from my body and I think my mind takes cautious decisions for the body.

You might be pondering over such questions. By listening to your body, I mean paying attention to little cues that your body gives to you. When you ignore these cues and go on with your present lifestyle, you might end up in a big mess. For instance, a friend of mine had begun a new set of exercises to flatten her belly. She had a slight pain here and there, but she ignored these signs and carried on, thinking that her body will ultimately adjust to them. After a week or so, she was not even able to move and ultimately got bedridden for a month. Now, if she had listened to her body, she might have understood the difference between the two pains – first one which is felt when a person begins exercising for the first time and the second one which is a signal that the exercise that the person is doing is wrong for the body.

Similarly, hunger is a sign that your body gives you when it requires nutrition. Likewise, cravings are the way your body speaks to you to get a specific nutrition. Further, aches and pains are also the way your body speaks to you. At a specific age, a woman’s body changes and gives signs for motherhood, menopause and so on. When such signs are ignored, poor health becomes inevitable.

Listening to your body will benefit your health in many ways. There are several instances when we know that we are going to fall sick. These signs from the body signal us to stop doing whatever wrong that we are doing. Suppose, when you eat an ice cream bar even though your taste buds are not tingling for it, you might end up with a cold. Your taste buds had signaled you not to eat a bar right then because your body was not ready for it. When we listen to cues from our body, we can avoid many health related issues. We can change our food habits, exercises, lifestyle and even some parts of our routine. For example, my husband stopped drinking tea on an empty stomach in the morning when he started feeling inflammation in his throat right after it. Such cues from the body need to be respected and followed through to keep the health intact.

Listening to the Bodies is a Lost Art

When I was a young, I used to spend free time majorly with my grandparents. They had a way of life which I found quite amusing at that time. However, all those acts made my grandparents live longer, without much medication. This is because that generation knew how to listen to their bodies. My grandfather used to demand certain foods on some days. While he told us that his body is demanding those foods, we used to think that he is bored of the usual fare. Once while basking in the sun during winters, my grandpa explained that concept to me. He told me that there are certain foods that our bodies demands, depending upon the weather.

If you are feeling cold, you should eat foods that are warm in nature – sesame seeds, mustard oil, edible gum, etc. These foods will keep you warm from inside. Likewise, sitting in the sun is also a requirement of the body, so is taking rest. This explained all the funny acts of my grandparents. They were not funny but they were different from ours. They listened to their bodies and demanded certain foods, slept in the sun and even took a walk during the cold evenings. I was amazed by this explanation. Now, I can understand completely what he was trying to say. Listening to the bodies is a lost art. While carrying out the daily activities in the present age, we have got into a rut. We often do not give heed to the signs by our body to stop and take a break. All this leads to stress, breakdown, anxiety and even depression.

How to Listen to Your Body?

Art of Listening to Your Body

You do not need to join some classes to listen to your body nor need you become deeply spiritual. Just a few alterations in your lifestyle will help you listen to your body. And when you master this art, do not take the cues lightly. When your body asks you to stop, you need to listen to it and act accordingly. Here are a few steps that will help you pay heed to what your body wants to say to keep you hale and hearty.

Slow Down your Daily Routine

How many times have you thought that there should be more than 24 hours in a day? The very first step to start listening to your bodies is slow it down. The present age has made us a busy bee – we do not have time to breathe and think about our own selves. While juggling several responsibilities and wearing multiple hats in a single day, we get caught up in our own web. Connecting to bodies seems to be the last thing on our mind. We desire to change our present routine and take out some time for our own selves, but it does not seem to be possible. To take things slowly, disconnect with outer world by unplugging from gadgets. Appreciate your life and the nature around you. Do not watch television while eating or check social media updates before sleeping. If you think that you have missed the bus and you are late to get into this habit, then you are wrong here. You can start any time and change your routine, one step at a time.

Do Not Look for Easy Solution

This is true, especially for your health. Often, we try to resort to easy remedies to take care of our illnesses. Take for instance, tackling hunger. Usually, when you are in a rush and your stomach starts grumbling, what will you do? You will open your pantry or the refrigerator, grab something that can be eaten instantly and move on.

Many of us have the habit of spending less time in eating. Taking care of our food and health is last in the list of our priorities. Snacking mindlessly only leads to a temporary hunger solution. This will not benefit your health in long term. You need to slow down and listen to your body. What type of hunger is it? Will an apple satiate the hunger or will you need to eat a full-fledged healthy meal? Or is it not hunger at all – it is thirst or even boredom! Thinking in this manner will let you find effective solutions for the cues that your body gives. This also means not finding solutions in medications and resort to natural remedies first. Like, headache does not always require medication; it might require a deeper analysis of this recurrent situation. I came to realize that my headaches were due to cold. By just wrapping a tight scarf around my head, I solved the problem.

Breathe Slowly and Deeply

You might not know that most of the problems that we face can be solved by breathing. If your boss just lectured you on that pending work, then instead of feeling bad instantly, take a pause. Start breathing deeply. Take one breath at a time and follow it from your nose to your belly. Think of solutions of taking care of that task. Do not feel anxious and take hold of your feelings. You will start feeling good. Listen to your body by sitting / standing in a quiet corner and breathing deeply. This will solve most of your problems.

Learn to Love Your Body

I have heard many people say that they just hate their body – while some do not like the fact that they are fat, others things that they are short or thin or have ugly legs and the list goes on. Instead of cribbing about different parts of the body, learn to embrace them. Love the way you look and love the feeling of it. Do not aim losing weight, instead aim to become fit and healthy. When you wake up in the morning, see yourself in the mirror and say “I am Beautiful and Healthy”. Your body will follow suit and you will notice the differences in the way you look.

Practice Mindfulness

This seems to be deep but it is not that tough. For beginning practicing mindfulness, you need to make use of all your five senses. This helps you enhance the experience. You need not take out special or dedicated time for this. Just inculcate it in all the activities that you do in your routine life. When you sit down to eat, touch the food and let the smell engulf your senses. Taste it and chew properly. Feel the food reaching every part of your body and giving you optimum nutrition. Another example is when you are in a park. Let the nature talk to you. Listen to the birds and the wind swooshing. . This will enhance your memory and let you remember incidents not by the photographs that you took but the experiences that you had. This will help you listen to your body actively.

Try Alternate Therapies

Instead of resorting to medicines to cure illness, try simple therapies. There are several alternate therapies available these days that help you in finding out the reason of your illness and treating it thoroughly. Learn more about Ayurveda or Naturopathy. Practice Yoga and Pranayama. Delve deeper into the healing powers of Reiki. These therapies help you listen to your body and practice mindfulness. They help you take hold of the matters of your body and take cues from it. So, next time when you have a stomach ache, do not pop the pill but look for other things that can be done to treat the ailment.

Your body is indeed like a temple. Believe in it. When you face an illness, do not give up on it. Try to inculcate the habit of listening to your body. Your body loves you and you need to love it too. Your body listens to you and you need to listen it too. Happy listening!

Any other tips you would like to share? Let’s discuss it in the comments section.

Healthy Eating Habits for Kids – Starting Early Has Many Benefits

Healthy Eating Habits for Kids

When I sit back and watch my toddler grow, I am really surprised as to how times have changed. There is so much exposure available to my kid which was not accessible to me, when I was young.

For us, cake and cookies was an occasional or say, birthday treat. In stark contrast, my toddler gets it every now and then – and at times, almost every day. Treats aside, there is one thing that I am glad I know that my mother probably didn’t – nutrition. While our parents made sure that we get adequate nourishment, they were not aware of specific nutrition every food has. So, what they fed us was a random planning. And what I feed my toddler is very much planned. For instance, I make sure that she gets her daily dose of protein, calcium, carbohydrates, dietary fibers, iron and even starch.

Changing Times

The change that I am observing over the years is that many common foods have lost their sheen when it comes to nutrition. For instance, milk was the super food in my childhood but many parents nowadays make milk an option rather than a compulsion. I am glad that thanks to the internet, I am aware of substitute foods. Suppose, if my daughter refuses to have milk, then I can give her a yogurt smoothie. If she doesn’t like fruits, I bake a fruit cake (which is not as healthy as raw foods, but it does the work to an extent).

Times might have changed, but one thing that has not changed for sure is love – love and care of parents towards their tiny tots, which is expressed through foods most of the times.

Tap Them Early

We live in an age where lifestyle diseases are quite common, even among youngsters. While some take proud in being a slave to lifestyle, it is sorry news after all. Instead of altering diets and lifestyle at a later stage in life or after getting affected by certain ailment (God forbids), it is necessary that the problem is nipped in the bud itself. What I mean is that instead of asking adults to change their lifestyle, why not teach kids to eat right and stay active. This might seem somewhat difficult; however, it is much easier. Lifestyle and environment are primary influencers that shape the health of the kids. However, they realize it much later when they reach adulthood. Hence, it is necessary that kids are taught early about health and food.

Right from infancy, healthy eating has a positive effect on the kid. And by the time the kid starts going to school, their microbiome present in their system is pretty much defined and it even stays with them for several years or even lifetime. This makes it necessary to design healthy meal plans even for infants. This might sound quite complicated to you but it is quite simple and easy.

Begin with a Good Diet

So, you might be wondering what is new in this. Every parent makes sure that the kid/s gets good food and a healthy diet. However, some things miss out from the diet. The reason for this might be lack of knowledge.

For instance, it is necessary that your kids get a daily dose of good bacteria to maintain their gut health. Good bacteria present in the stomach survive on dietary fibers. If the diet your child is fed does not have enough fibers, then good bacteria starts eating the mucus lining the intestinal walls. This might result in ailments like inflammatory bowels, asthma and several allergies. For this, a diet rich in dietary fiber is a must. Dietary fibers refer to complex carbohydrates that are present in plant-based diets. Make sure that your child gets a diet enriched with vegetables and fruits, whole grains and nuts, legumes and other varieties that help keep the gut healthy.

If your kids are not fond of foods that are enriched with dietary fibers, it is your onus to make these appealing to them. Make soups out of the veggies or add them to their pastas, serve them raw with interesting healthy dips or cut and serve them in style.

Prepare it Fresh

You might think that you are eating everything fresh. However, there are certain points that you might miss. For instance, preparing instant noodles fresh for your kid does not count as preparing a ‘fresh meal’. Feeding flavored yogurts to your kid is described as ‘instant unhealthy meal’ rather than a fresh one. You might have checked the date of manufacturing of each of the products you purchase from the super store. What you might not have noticed is the section that has ingredients.

The first ingredient that is mentioned is the one that is highest in quantity and the second constitutes a major part too. Instant flavored yogurts are high in sugar. If you want to feed good bacteria to your kid through yogurt, then make sure to prepare it at home or at least flavor it using natural ingredients – like fruits, dry fruits or interesting things like maple syrup or even honey.

Make healthy foods appealing to your kids by adding artificial substances only in the beginning – keep reducing the amount day by day and gradually just add a hint of it. This might help them cut back on such sweeteners. I promised myself to keep my kid away from instant foods – the easier it is to prepare this meal, the worse it is for the body. There are many other things that can be done to make our kids bloom like healthy flowers – who are not slave to technology or convenience when it comes to preparing nourishing meals.

Cut Back on Over-sanitizing

Using sanitizers is good, without any doubt. Sanitizers help us parents in preventing our kids from bacteria and illness. However, some kids might end up over-sanitizing, which might prove to be harmful later. While you sterilize everything, you might be keeping your kids away from good bacteria as well. It is funny that some parents do not wash the toys of their kids often. However, it is required that do this. By not washing regularly, they are exposing their kids to bacteria. This helps build the immune system of their kids.

But a note of caution here is that you are aware of times when washing is required and when it is not. Further, it is good that you have taught your kid to wash hands regularly. But it should not happen, as it did in my toddler’s case, wherein the child wants to wash hands every hour, irrespective of the fact whether it is required or not. Also, make sure that you use natural and herbal cleaning products at least for the child. This will help the kids away from harsh chemicals that irritate the skin.

Do Not Make them Eat Forcefully

Kids are not aware of hunger. We make them eat at regular intervals. Many parents even complain that their children do not ask for food – they keep on playing non-stop. However, it is the onus of the parents to make their kids understand the internal signs of hunger and even fullness.

If you cultivate a habit of making them eat more, in spite of kids denying eating, you might end up making them suppress the signs of fullness. In such cases, kids never understand whether they are hungry or satiated. They look for parental approval to know this. Conversely, kids deny eating when they are playing. Being a parent, you might be worried about their depleting energy levels. However, there is no other way out to make them learn.

Learn About Your Kids’ Taste

I will tell something about my experience with my toddler. She is a picky eater at times. She doesn’t like fruits, juices or anything related to them. My health provider advised me to make fruits interesting for her. So, I tried giving her banana ice creams, fruit pancakes and such things. Still, she guessed the ingredient and refrained from eating it. However, making interesting does not mean that make it healthily interesting. It means making it interesting on in their way.

For instance, adding spices on the fruit or adding vanilla ice cream to the fruit or such things. Often, being parents we make foods appealing in a healthy way. Conversely, we should think from the kids’ point of view. When the kids get hooked on to the specific food, we should gradually lessen the appeal of the food and give them the original taste. This might help.

Also Read: How to Create a Healthy, Happy and Creative Environment for Your Family

Refrain from Needless Antibiotics

I am not a doctor. However, I have come to understand from bitter experiences that too much antibiotics do not help. Yes, they are considered to be lifesavers. But they do have their dark side. Overdose of anything can be toxic. You might be surprised to know that antibiotics do not differentiate between good bacteria and bad bacteria. They carry out a ruthless killing drive. While you might not get to know the results immediately, the long term health of your kids might be affected due to this. Try not giving antibiotics for ailments that can be treated through other means.

For instance, I begin with home remedies for treating cough and cold. A single sneeze of my toddler is enough to get started with home-remedies. They are quite effective but yes, administering them requires patience.

Teach Them Tasting New Foods

I still remember a tea advertisement from my childhood. A man enters a room with several cups of tea in a line. He tastes them one by one and then chooses the best. I think the same happens with the kid. They need to taste food several times before finalizing it for their belly. Make food tasting fun for the kid. Before asking them to eat, request them to taste it. For instance, give them a pea-sized amount of something and take reviews – whether it is sweet, crispy, salty, crunchy, hot, cold or just bland. This way, they will not only understand different tastes but also agree to accept your food tasting invite. They might ask for more if they really like it.

For my kiddo, I keep two options, not more, at least for dinner. When we try a new recipe, there’s also the regular for my kid. I make her taste the new first. If she likes, she can have it. If not, we have the regular one as a backup option. However, one thing that is required in this whole activity is patience. But the result will be quite good as your child might start eating a variety of foods.

Also Read: 7 Successful Ways to Make Your Children Eat More Fruits Happily

Expose Them to Different Play Areas

As parents, we are protective and always have an umbrella ready for sudden rains. However, we should let our kids enjoy the sudden rains and run for protection on their own. By this, I mean that we should expose our kids to different kinds of play area. Like over sanitizing is not good, in the same way making them play only at home is also not good for their health. When kids play in the mud, grass and other such areas, they come in contact with several types of bacteria – both good and bad. This will help their body learn to fight them and prevent sickness.

Conclusion

It is quite tough to bring up a healthy kid. While there is no yardstick to measure as to whether you are doing well or your friend in matters of motherhood; there is something that makes you feel good when your kid eats a healthy meal. I smile from ear to ear when she finishes up a freshly prepared glass of juice rather than the sugar-laden tetra packs. You might not realize this now, but when your kids grow up they might thank you as they will not have to take a single sick leave from office. Happy and healthy parenting to you!

6 No-Brainer Exercises That You Can Do at Home

6 No Brainer Exercises That You Can Do at Home

I am a lazy person like you when it comes to exercises. I have a thousand and one excuses to postpone weight-loss and the primary one is catch up on sleep. And hence, I searched for some exercises that I can do even when I wake up late in the morning. Here are some of them. However, consistency is the key with these exercises.

1. Walking in Place

Wear your walking shoes and just start walking, wait, at the very place you are standing. You do not need to go out, choose a route, and come back tired, etc. For this, you just need to wear your shoes and walk at the same place. It is known as walking in place or marching in place. Try this, it is possible. You will love it.

It is as effective as regular walking and I like it because it gets me going. You can sneak in this exercise during commercial breaks, while keeping a watch over boiling milk and even when you are talking on phone. Easy and simple, isn’t this?

2. Stationary Jogging

This particular exercise requires you to run or jog at one place. Remember that you wear shoes while doing stationary jogging. It helps improve cardiovascular health. With this, I am not worried about monsoon.

Whatever the weather be, exercising is a must. Stationary jogging helps to lose weight by burning calories. When you are pressed for time, this is the best form of exercise. Among other benefits, it helps build strength and prevents cardiovascular diseases as well.

3. Jumping

You are right, jumping is indeed an exercise. You will love it, because it does not require any practice or investment. Just start jumping, whenever you feel like. However, you should first warm up before starting jumping. Initially, start jumping gently. Once you are comfortable, start regular jumping. Keep your feet shoulder-width apart and arms locked on your sides. Start jumping now. Alternatively, you can do jumping jacks – just change the position of your hands. In jumping jacks, your hands should be at your shoulders.

4. Aerobics Stepper

You need equipment for this, but nothing more than that. You can either look for a plank or a step bench that is 4 to 12 inches high or else invest in aerobics stepper. I did not find it too costly and bought one. I began with stepping up and down the aerobics, just like we do on stairs. It was fun. Then, I hunted for some more exercises using step aerobics. Put on some good music and get on with stepping.

You will be surprised to know the benefits of step aerobics. It is a low-impact exercise that burns huge calories in minimum time. If you want to strengthen your butt and surrounding areas, this is perfect. It is hassle-free and does not require going out anywhere to workout.

5. Hula Hoops

I have talked about hula hooping earlier in my posts. Hula hooping burns calories without even you realizing it. You will be surprised to know that hula hooping is a complete body workout. You just need to invest in a hula hoops for this exercise.

It is also possible choose between weighted or simple hula hoops. Whenever you wake up late or return late from office, hoop for some minutes. It burns 50 calories in 8 minutes, interesting, isn’t it?

6. Skipping Ropes

Yes, skipping rope is an exercise, just like hula hoops is. Invest in good quality ropes for this. It is a good cardio exercise and burns more than 1000 calories per hour. Further, it is a full body workout and concentrates on strengthening your thighs and calf muscles. You can do skipping both ways – barefoot or wearing shoes. There are several types of exercises you can perform skipping – double jump, cross jump, etc. Find the one that suits you and start skipping!

Conclusion

This is interesting, right. So, next time, when you give an excuse for not exercising, think about these exercises. These do not accept any kind of excuses. In conclusion, Just get up from your place and start doing them.

You can even do this while you are in kitchen and waiting for the water to boil. If you have some free time on your hand, these could be done at workplace as well. Take your kids to play area and while they play, do these exercises. You can even involve kids and make exercise fun.

Amazingly Effective Castor Oil Benefits in Everyday Life

castor oil benefits

Hmm… castor oil. I was not particularly fond of castor oil. Its greasiness got to me when my mom asked me to wash the grains that were soaked in castor oil. Grains are coated with a layer of castor oil to prevent them from bacterial growth. I had to wash my hands with soap several times thereafter. However, years later, I thanked castor oil for its properties. I was able to deliver my baby normally after consuming it twice.

Castor oil was recommended to me as it induces labour. (Do not rush to have it, women. Consume it only after consulting your gynecologist as every pregnancy is different.) Post pregnancy, I tried to look upon the benefits of castor oil, if there are others that I didn’t know. My search resulted in tons of benefits of this humble and not much publicized oil. It is one of the home remedial foods that should be present in every kitchen. Not just Indians, even Europeans, Chinese, Africans, Persians, Greeks, Romans are equally fond of it.

I asked one of the Ayurveda doctors about castor oil and the reasons of its popularity and I came to know that Castor oil is anti-inflammatory, anti-microbial and has pain relieving properties as well. Ricinoleic Acid in castor oil is a monounsaturated fatty acid. It contains 90% of this acid, which makes the oil not only viscous but also highly absorbent.

Immunity

While many consume castor oil for benefits, even application of castor oil is quite beneficial. By using castor oil packs, there is significant improvement in blood flow in the system. Also, experts believe that through castor oil, the production of lymphocytes can be improved to an extent.

For the uninitiated, lymphocytes prevent attacks of foreign bodies by making the immune system strong. With advice of health providers, castor oil can be used to benefit heart, health and even the digestive system.

Skin Infection

Castor oil is quite beneficial for the skin. Skin reflects your health in many ways. If you are suffering from a weak immune system, hormonal imbalance or ailments related to digestion, it shows up instantly on your skin. For instance, if you are suffering from recurring acne, then instead of hiding it with makeup or creams, you should get your health examined. For a healthy skin, prevention is the best cure. Keep castor oil handy. It is not only natural but also versatile when it comes to benefits.

By application of castor oil, you can keep several skin ailments at bay. It is because castor oil is easily absorbed by skin. It helps fight skin infections by increasing blood circulation. Castor oil is also believed to help in healing wounds faster. Being anti-microbial, it is one of the best remedies for skin ailments like ringworm and others like nail fungus.

Foot Ailments

If your feet often face the brunt of bruises and cracks, then castor oil could be the solution you are looking for. Regular application helps in healing cracks by hydrating the skin of the feet. It is even said to reduce redness and itching.

The anti-fungal property of castor oil make it apt for treating fungus, bad odors, warts, mycoses, redness that often attack your feet. Castor Oil packs help in healing pains and massaging foot with castor oil along with coconut oil helps in relaxing the area.

It even helps ease the pain of severe headache and migraine. If there are calcium deposits on your sole, help them dissolve by massaging castor oil regularly.

Hormonal Imbalance

With castor oil, you can benefit your hormonal system as well. Castor oil is said to help in balancing the hormones. While consuming it can disturb your digestive system as it is a strong laxative, you can use it through packs.

Castor oil packs helps in detoxification and even blood circulation. With enhanced blood flow, sex organs work efficiently. This helps in preventing fatigue and depression as well.

Stretch Marks and Labour

Many mothers swear by castor oil for preventing stretch marks. If you regularly apply castor oil in the third trimester, it is said to soothe the itching caused due to stretching of skin; thus, preventing stretch marks. It also helps induce labour (in my case, it did).

By consuming castor oil, the speed of uterus contractions increases. The presence of ricinoleic acid helps in activating prostanoid receptors in your uterus. However, many health providers do not recommend using it as it might make women feel queasy after consuming.

Gynecological Issues

Menstrual Cramps can often be treated by using castor oil heat packs. In fact, many gynecological disorders can be healed by using castor oil regularly. It is believed that if castor oil packs are applied on the reproductive area, then it helps promote fertility by eliminating toxins and old blood.

It even evacuates the system of foreign tissues. If you apply castor oil on the lower abdomen, it helps in easing the blockages in the channels. You can use it during the menstrual cycle or even before it begins as a proactive measure. Castor oil is also said to improve and promote fertility.

Hair

One of the advices that I often heard for my toddler is to apply castor oil on her scalp. She does not have long, pretty hair as her friends do. After getting regular advices of the same type, I gave in and start using the oil along with a mix of some other oils. Voila! It did help. I would advise coupling it with proper nutrition though.

Castor oil helps in improving blood circulation. It even moisturizes the hair and prevents the loss due to dryness. The presence of natural compounds in the oil makes it a perfect remedy. Castor oil also easily penetrates into the skin pores, thereby restoring growth. Ayurveda Experts even recommend castor oil to prevent adverse effects of damaging rays of sun and even pollution in the present age.

What more! You can prevent dandruff, acne and restore pH level of the scalp with castor oil. Once, my beautician even asked me to apply castor oil on eyebrows and eyelashes to thicken them.

Beauty

I found out that castor oil helps even in acne. The presence of ricinoleic acid is said to clear the skin of stubborn acne. You just need to clean your face and massage in some castor oil before going to bed. Remember to wash it off in the morning. And, say goodbye to wrinkles.

By promoting collagen production and elastin, it is a perfect remedy to restore youth. The fatty acids present in castor oil helps in reducing the intensity of scars. With regular application, scars fade away naturally.

If you are tired of blemishes on your skin, try using castor oil. The oil is effective in reducing pigmentation and cure uneven skin tone and spots. Apply castor oil around the eyes to get rid of dark circles as well.

Moisturizer

Make homemade moisturizer by mixing castor oil with sesame oil in equal quantities. Fill it up in an empty container. However, if you have normal skin, use olive oil instead of sesame oil. For oily skin, jojoba oil is a perfect option as compared to sesame oil. Apply it before retiring to bed on your hands and feet.

Castor oil helps nourish your skin naturally. Use this oil for massaging body. It helps ease the pain and cures muscles of soreness. For treating sunburns, apply a mix of oil and coconut oil on the affected parts. It can even be used as lip balm, in addition applying it on nails can treat their brittleness.

Beard Growth

It definitely helps in growing your beard. For this, wash your face with warm water and pat dry. Rub castor oil on your palms and then on the beard gently. Massaging it on the cheeks in the upward direction for about five minutes helps in stimulating the hair follicles. Perform this procedure regularly at night. Remember to wash the oil off next morning. Stay alert, I am sure, you will wake up with a beard some morning!

Eyes

Being anti-microbial, castor oil helps in bacterial infections of the eyes as well. Eye drops containing castor oil are used for the same. it not only helps treat conjunctivitis but also dry eyes. It helps retain the moisture in the eyes through adequate lubrication.

The early stages of cataract can be treated through castor oil hence a drop of castor oil in each of the eyes at night is recommended for the same. If you are suffering from inflammation around the eyes, make use of it for treating the same.

Surprising Benefits

It is believed that applying castor oil packs on the area around neck for 12 weeks helps remove the nodules present on the vocal chords. Castor oil also helps in treating chronic hoarseness.

It is found that using castor oil packs on the belly also helps in treating hyperactivity. Bee stings heal faster through this oil. Also, using it on abdomen even helps treat snoring.

How to Use Heat Packs

For this, take an old piece of cloth, big enough for wrapping the desired area. Additionally, ready another big cloth as wrap over the old cloth. This wrap helps in insulating the heat and intensifies the treatment. It even helps spilling of oil. Apply castor oil on the affected area. Place the old cloth on its top. Now, cover the area with additional wrap. On top of this, apply hot water bottle. In absence of bottle, use can even use electric heating pad. Relax on your favourite spot and let the heating pack do its work for close to an hour or at least for thirty minutes. When this procedure is done, remove the residue using a tissue. If you still feel the greasiness, use a mixture of water and two teaspoons of baking soda to remove it.

Conclusion

In conclusion, there are so many benefits of castor oil that a post is not enough. However, I have tried to accommodate them to make it easier for you to make the most of it.

Before proceeding, please note that this is a post describing home remedies. Please consult your health provider before following the remedy.

10 Mistakes to Avoid on Weekend for a Super Healthy Week

10 Mistakes to Avoid on Weekend for a Super Healthy Week

Earlier Sheena used to be a weekend girl. Saving calories all along the week to binge at her favourite pastry on Sunday. This had become her ritual. Spending her Sunday in the most unhealthy style and begin her usual routine Monday onward.

After a month or so, she realized that in spite of working out hard, she was not able to lose weight – albeit she had gained some pounds. What could be going wrong? She had read somewhere that you can give in to your cravings once in a while even while dieting.

I used to be totally confused as Sheena is now. I committed the same mistakes. However, one of my instructors at aerobic classes enlightened me. On every Friday morning, she used to say a line when the class came to an end. She used to say, “Do not eat burger on the weekend or do not eat pastry on this weekend. These foods are loaded with calories and the hard work you did for the entire week will go for a toss. Since then, I stopped my Sunday binges. In fact, I work out on Sundays and take rest on Mondays to stay away from Monday blues. Besides eating unhealthy, there are so many mistakes that we commit on weekends that turn out to be detrimental to our health in long term. Let’s have a look.

1. Messy Fridays

Sabotaging your weekend begins from Friday itself. The joy of upcoming weekend is so much that even the Friday schedule goes for a toss. Some people, including myself, miss the Friday workout, thinking of catching it up on the Weekend. This never happens. Tiredness suddenly sets in on Friday evening to even cook a healthy dinner. You might blame advertisements and offers by restaurants for this. However, their job is to make it tempting for you. They are not aware that you desire to live a healthy life. While you can enjoy a hearty meal in restaurants, you should not make it a habit. If your Friday goes good, you can make well informed choices for the weekend.

2. Liquor Ticker

Liquor is one of the ways to celebrate the weekend. However, if you do not pre-decide the quantity, it is hard to decide it after that first glass. Too much intake of alcohol harms your health. There are so many ailments that are a result of heavy drinking. Alcohol damages your liver and even plays a role in causing several types of cancer. If you are fond of alcohol, do not keep the bottle near to you. Just prepare a glass and consume it. Keeping the bottle within reach will tempt you to drink more.

3. Snooze Dose

Weekends are meant to catch up on lost sleep, right. However, experts believe that if you do not keep a tap on sleep in the morning, then you are likely to spoil your day. The more you sleep, greater are the chances of a lethargic day. Instead, you should wake up on time in the morning and opt for naps during the day. This will help you accomplish your weekend goals without missing out on sleep. What I prefer on Sundays is to wake up on time and enjoy a relaxed morning when I do not have to rush to do anything. I prepare a mug of coffee, sit near the window and enjoy reading Sunday supplements with sips of caffeine. What say?

4. Not Taking a Social Media Break

If I was writing this post some 10 years back, this point would not have existed at all. However, social media is a menace in this age and world. With internet available on the phone, many people are interested in keeping a tap on how other people are spending their Sundays rather than enjoying their own.

Further, World Wide Web is contagious. It is known as web for some reason. Once you get inside, it is difficult for you to get off it. If you desire to spend a healthy weekend, take a social media break. Do not even hover around your phone. Spend time with your loved ones rather than watching their updates on social media. Further, social media even does not allow you to take adequate rest, which is a must for weekends.

5. The Itch to Binge

This error is one of the most common ones and should be moved on to number one. Sundays are not meant to take a break from the healthy routine and go about eating anything and everything that comes to your sight. If you really want to take a break, opt for one meal in a day. Binging throughout the weekend will harm your health badly and the hard work of entire week will do down the drain.

Maintaining your body is like maintaining relationships. It is quite easy to form them but quite hard to mend a broken one. When you binge, your body is not able to handle the constant ‘unhealthy’ food you stuff it with. Your system feels as if it is in a roller coaster. You might not be aware that many ailments are a result of binging. Some of the problems that binging results in are fatigue, anxiety and even depression. You are spoiling a great week with weekend binging for sure. Instead of binging, do not stay away from your favourite food but keep a control on the portion your indulgences.

6. Extreme Exercise Schedule

There are two types of personalities – one who do not work out on weekends and other who work out only on weekends. These are on the extreme ends. Some people even go overboard with workouts on weekends. In both the cases, you could be harming your health. Your body does not get used to such forms of workout.

The strain on the muscles is quite grave, when you work out only on the weekends. Whereas it is possible to take a break once a week, make sure that you do not opt for no-workout weekends. By not working out both on Saturday and Sunday, your muscles get strained when you begin your workout on Mondays. When it comes to binging and exercise, moderation is the key. What you can do is exercise thrice a week if your schedule is too tight. What I prefer is resting on Mondays and working it out throughout the week. It feels great to begin a Monday after proper sleep and rest.

7. Working on Weekends

While some go overboard with weekend celebration, others prefer working even on weekends to lower the burden of the upcoming week. Checking on work emails is quite tempting. However, it is required to take a break from the work at least once a week. This is necessary for enhanced levels of productivity during the week. When your mind gets required amount of relaxation from the work, it gets charged up to tackle the things in the coming week. Such work schedule results in stress and even depression, at times.

8. Running Errands

This is one of the favourite habits of my dear husband. He likes doing all the wrong stuff on weekends. Grocery shopping, cleaning his accessories, servicing his vehicle and all the related ones. If you have the same habit, then even you might be feeling that your Sunday is not a Fun-day at all, just like my husband keeps on complaining. What you can do is instead of piling up the work for a pretty Sunday, you can set aside half an hour every day to complete the chores. This way, your Sunday would not have a long list of to-dos.

9. Unnecessary Worrying

Another bad habit that my husband has – is keep worrying about the work that needs to be completed at office. He keeps on narrating the list to me – I listen to it attentively at times. But sometimes I do wonder that will worrying about the work on Sunday will get it done automatically on Monday? Nopes. Then why keep on worrying along with your spouse. Instead watch movies together, cook a nice meal or play some board games. Such Sundays are the great ones, according to me.

10. Read this on Sunday

If you are reading this on Sunday, then you have wasted your precious weekend moments on this preachy post. Instead get up and get going. Keep your mobile at a distance and take a walk across the street. You might meet an old friend of yours or find something interesting that makes your Sunday a better one. What say?

Weekends are not for committing errors but refueling your body and mind that makes your upcoming week a great one. Pre-plan it – even the rest and you will make it one of the best weekends.

How to Look Fab Post-Delivery and Recover Quickly from Giving Birth

recover quickly from giving birth

I was in a mess post-delivery. Being a first time mom is pretty tough. I had gained a lot of pounds in spite of eating just healthy food during pregnancy. I never gave into cravings and exercised during the entire time. Even after doing all this, I looked similar to a bloated balloon. In order to maintain myself, I started exercising twice a day, once my baby was 2 months old. However, in a bid to lose weight, I forgot about everything else – spending time with baby and husband, eating healthy food, reading books, et al. Here are some things that you can do to look fab post-delivery.

Begin with a Haircut

Your hair bears the brunt of postpartum problem that you face. You do not get time to eat well or care for the hair. This ultimately results in hair loss. I suggest cutting your hair shorter. This will help you manage your hair. It will even make you feel good. Whenever I am feeling low or going through a tough phase, I opt for a haircut. It works like magic on my mood. Ask your stylist for a postpartum mommy friendly haircut – one which looks fun, is manageable and makes you feel good.

Next is Hydration

look fab post-delivery

Whether or not you are breastfeeding, water works wonders on the skin. Drink plenty of water to stay hydrated throughout the day. Drinking water helps stabilize any hormonal problems that you might be facing. It even prevents mindless eating. Make sure you drink at least 8 glasses of water daily. My grandma suggested me drinking carom seeds water post-delivery. What you need to do is soak the some seeds at night in some water. Drink this water in the morning on an empty stomach. It clears out the accumulated toxins in the uterus, also helping in digestion. Interesting, isn’t this!

Skincare

I was so busy with the baby that I seldom got time to observe myself in the mirror. Once while brushing teeth, I noticed tiny specks on the cheeks. This was a red signal. I hurried to the dermatologist to make sure that there is nothing to worry about. I have become a little hypochondriac post pregnancy. And in this age of internet, I should definitely be labeled as cyberchondriac. While the dermatologist had only creams to prescribe, I promised myself a skincare regimen. The post-delivery difficulties will last only for a while. However, the skin will stay with you for lifetime. If you do not take care of your skin now, at this delicate stage, you might end up with grave problems.

Cleansing

Let’s begin with the night time. After a hectic day, you just want to hit the bed without even changing into your PJs. However, cleansing your skin is must at night. Just dab a little face-wash and let your skin breathe. The skin of your face attracts all the grime and grease while you cook, go out in extreme weathers and even when you just stand at the window. Hence, cleansing before bedtime will make sure that it breathes well throughout the night. Washing face twice a day is quite essential. It helps remove dirt and oil and prevents breakouts.

Night Cream

It is tough to make a baby sleep. She can play all night, without even blinking her eyelids. So, when I put her to bed, instead of struggling to make her sleep, I make use of this time. I begin with applying cream on my feet and hands. I use a good quality night cream that is not sticky but helps moisturize my skin. I feel good when I wake up. Just washing my face with water is enough when I wake up. There are overnight masks and light night creams readily available at superstores.

Good Sleep

I had the benefit of not resuming work immediately post-delivery. I used this to catch up on all the sleep I missed while working during pregnancy. When my baby dozed off, I first completed some of the chores and then slept closed to her. It was simply blissful. Sleeping helps maintain weight and even results in a good mood. It even gives you healthy skin.

Food Habits

Ah! The time of pregnancy is good to binge. Sadly, that time is over. Take care of your diet. Stop sugary diet. It is detrimental to the health of your skin. Include raw veggies and fruits in your diet. Cut down junk food. Eating foods that are high in anti-oxidants keep your skin youthful and fresh. While you keep a tap on your diet, it’s okay to cheat at times. However, practice portion controls.

Exercise

Exercising improves the blood flow and gives you a glowing skin. Learn facial exercises and yoga. For instance, Suryanamaskar even helps in preventing hair fall. Also, practice breathing exercises. They are quite helpful. The best thing about exercise is that it even keeps your body fit. I have been exercising since I was 15. I am quite glad that seeing me practice yoga, my daughter is inspired to practice some asanas too. However, if you are not able to exercise at home, then go for walks regularly. Fresh air and sunshine will help you heal quickly.

Shopping

Yes, it is the secret of staying alive and happy, once proved by a shopaholic. If you do not want to shop for clothes as you will shed the extra kilos in some time, then you can at least go for window shopping. It will make you feel good. You can buy some dark chocolates, scarves or even perfumes, what say? Ask your closed ones to look after the baby while you go out alone to enjoy some me-time.

Salon Time

I feel so much pampered at the salon. People looking after me and making me feel comfortable. And when I step outside the salon door, I feel that entire world is looking at me in wonder, as if I have been turned into a princess. If you feel the same, it’s time to make salon visits more often. Opt for manicure and pedicure and body massages. It will definitely make you feel better.

Library

It’s like a dream to go to a library post-delivery. However, if your husband arrives early from work and if you have some time at hand, grab the keys and head to a library. Read a magazine if not a novel. I am in love with magazines. The bright colours, smell of the pages and some fancy words heal my bad mood instantly.

Dressing

Yes, it is difficult to fit into the old denims right after giving birth. It seems to be forever till we are able to wear that favorite piece of clothing. However, if you have been creative with your dressing, then it’s time to put it to use even now. While you are not able to fit into the old clothes, it is not necessary that you wear only loose clothes. Mismatch your outfits to hide the weight gain. Play with colours and accessories. And believe me when I say that no one is going to notice you much, hereafter. As now onwards, your baby will be the star and the conversation starter when you venture out.

Stay Positive

I felt quite lonely during pregnancy and post-delivery. Watching friends going out and having fun made me all the more depressed. My husband counseled me. He used to brighten up my day saying that this is a temporary phase. Once the baby is slightly older, it would be fun to go out together as a family. Staying positive and attracting happiness should be on your mind rather than depression and loneliness. If need be, chuck social media for some time and concentrate on reading books and taking adequate rest. Your happiness will be passed on to your baby too.

Above All

Giving birth is the best phase of a women’s life. However, it takes a toll on both physical and mental health post-delivery. Your life will not change immediately in a day or two. It will take a couple of months to recover from pregnancy and post-pregnancy hassles. The best advice is to take one day at a time. Let the time heal you. Spend time with your baby; you will not even realize how time flies away. You will miss the infant more than any other stage. You are one awesome woman and I know you would quickly recover from post-delivery woes.

How to Create a Healthy, Happy and Creative Environment for Your Family

Create a Healthy, Happy and Creative Environment for Your Family

I was a little jealous of some families when I saw them spending time together, going on vacations and celebrating festive occasions. This specially happened on days when I had an argument with my husband. However, this changed when we welcomed our little bundle of joy. I had promised myself that I would gift her healthy and happy environment that would help her blossom. One of my doctors had advised me that your kid is like a bud desiring to open up. Make sure that when you are with her, your focus is not diverted to other chores of your office or home. These words of her are still etched in my mind.

Creating a healthy, happy and creative environment for your family is not hard at all. Certainly, you cannot transform 360 degrees, one fine day. Concentrate on one expect of your lifestyle at a time, and in a few months of time, your home and family would be one of the happiest. Now, while you are into making your home and family a happier one, you can do it in two ways. One, instill positive values in the family members – including yourself. And two, do up your home creatively to make it happy. Let’s begin with the house deco, because it is easier.

For the Home

Creative Environment for Your Family

Good Begets Better

Surround yourself with good things, good people and good home decor. When you see a smiling face on the wall, you are mostly likely to emote that face. Happy memories and pictures on your wall will create a positive domino effect in your life. Negative things will make you feel sad. For instance, tuck away broken things or simply discard them. Good things will result in a better life.

Lighting Works Wonder

Some lights are simply sad. They produce a dull light that make you feel burdened. Make sure that your home lights up like a happy face does. Not only sunlight but also artificial lighting should be well balanced in your home. You can experiment with lights by using chandeliers, bulbs, hangings, etc. I would prefer going green by using earthen lamps or fragrant candles, just for a cozy feeling.

A Happy Corner

Are you fond of a particular corner in your house? I certainly have a soft corner for a specific side of our living room. I have placed a bean bag in that corner and covered it up with some colorful sheets. With the help of my toddler, I have even pinned some handmade stars on the sheets. Whenever I feel glum, I light up an earthen lamp and play some good music. The best part is that it even gives me a view outside the window. This is my happy corner, do you have yours?

Play with Colours

When we shifted to our new apartment, we were sure that we will use good colours to make the house feel big and cozy at the same time. What we did is that we chose a green colour for a single wall and balanced it with lemon for other parts of the house. We have beautiful pictures and frames on that wall. The wall is known as ‘The Happy Wall’. The moment we see that wall, we feel good as a family. You too can play with colours in your home. You need not decorate the entire house; just get a bright orange vase or a yellow photo frame. This is just a suggestion – I mean that you should get quirky when choosing home decor.

A Happy Kitchen

husband wife cooking together

The family that eats together stays together. Make sure that you at least one meal in a day together. It can be anytime – even an evening tea with cookies! Do not switch on television at this time – but talk about ideas, food, taste, etc. At least once in a week, you should plan to cook meals together. Planning and cooking meals will bring you closer as you get to spend more time with each other. Do not cook in a hurry. Always have a plan ready for the meal. I plan for three meals in advance, so that I do not have to rush. I cannot cook well when I am anxious. To make things more interesting, I plan to hang a blackboard outside the kitchen that mention ‘Today’s Menu’. This way, my family can be prepared and even make changes if they feel so. A happy kitchen is the foundation of a happy home.

De-clutter Your House

Clear the scrap and the crap from your house. Once in a while, clear the drawers and donate the things that you have not been using for a while. You can even sell it to someone who requires it. Do not invest in several equipment or gadgets. Before purchasing, assess the need for the thing that you are buying. An organized home will definitely set the tone of happiness.

For the Family

Happy Family

Express Yourself

This has been taught to me by my husband. It is difficult for me to express myself when I am angry. I tend to bottle up the feelings and then suddenly burst on matters that didn’t require anger at all. Instead, what I do nowadays is say what I feel. Even we have taught our kids to say what they feel. We listen to them. This gives us a peek into their world. Opening channels of communication will bring your family closer. However, a word of caution is that you forbid using negative words. It might express you better in certain circumstances, but they are bad for your child’s mindset.

Choose the Right Language

What do you do before meeting the important clients? You might be re-thinking what to reveal and what not to for maintaining the relationship. This goes for your family. Often, bad and hurtful words might instill fear and anxiety, especially in the kids. Not only words, but language in entirety along with the right tone will inspire your kids to follow suit. Patience, love and support are required even when we communicate. Right from the beginning, use a language that boosts the self-worth of your child.

Demonstrate Your Love

While you love your family, you are weak when it comes to demonstrating it. Hug your kids often. Say, ‘I love you’ whenever needs be. Cuddles work wonders when the child is feeling low. Whenever my kiddo insists that I should make her eat lunch, I do that instantly. The more you love, the more love you get. I remember my aunt used to scold my cousins in case of bicycle accidents, when we were quite young. As opposed to this, I remember my father, who used to hold me in his arms and say, “That is okay. Accidents happen. You should learn from them.” His words were magical and healed my wounds instantly. Children require your love the most when they are going through a bad phase.

Inspire Your Family

When you as a spouse or a parent behave erratically, the other family members follow suit. You are a role model for your family. The language you choose, the confidence you exhibit, the way you eat or behave or choose a lifestyle is all been watched and copied. When you are angry on certain things, it vibrates in the environment of the house. You might notice that everybody in the family is behaving a little weird. This is because your anger has created negative vibrations. Hence, refrain from letting your anger or anxiety bog you and your family down. Even if it does, make sure that you get out of it as soon as possible.

Chuck the Expectations

The more you expect, more is the misery. Set reasonable goals for the day. Prepare yourself for the worst. Do not expect things to go as you had planned for. This will eliminate fear and burden in the environment. Take one hour at a time. Make a point to take breaks in between. It might happen that some of your days are not productive and you feel like just lying down. Such situations call for just lying down and watch your favourite shows.

Also Read: How to Instill Healthy Eating Habits in Your Family

You need not make great efforts to build a happy, healthy and a creative environment at home. Just take life lightly. Here is a caution though, ‘happiness’ cannot be measured; it’s a feeling. Do not judge an argument or a meltdown as a failure of your efforts. The best kept secret of a happy home is ‘love’. Love conquers everything. After becoming a mother, I realized that it is better to forget and forgive quickly. Hurt and anger consume much space not only in your body but also family. I wish you a happy and healthy family.