Fear Setting

New Year’s Resolutions 
With the new year brings new year’s resolutions. By this time, they may even be starting to feel like a distant memory. In fact, University of Scranton research suggests that just 8% of people achieve their New Year’s goals. Let’s not fall into this trap! This year instead of new year’s resolutions replace them with ‘Fear Setting’ (An exercise recently popularized by Tim Ferris)

Fear Setting

Whether it’s starting your own business, asking for a raise, or training for a marathon, the fear of failure can cripple you — if you let it.

To overcome fear, you must first drag your fears out into the open and confront them.

Fear setting is all about embracing your fears! A simple process in which you write down and quantify your fears. What is the worst-case scenario? (often it is not as bad as you think). Once identified work back from that scenario, how can you mitigate these the consequences and then how could you recover from this scenario.

Prior to identifying & mitigating the fear, you should first do a personal analysis of your life. Best way to do this is to apply the Pareto principle (also known as the 80/20 rule) The principle states that 80% of the effects come from 20% of the causes. I personally love this principle and apply it in my life in many different contexts: Work productivity boaster, Training, nutrition etc.

Follow these 3 steps to fear-setting:

  1. Do an 80/20 analysis:
  • “Which 20% of sources are causing 80% of my problems and unhappiness?”
  • “Which 20% of sources are resulting in 80% of my desired outcomes and happiness?”
  • “Which 20% of sources are consuming 80% of my time?”
  1. Write a to-do and not-to-do list:
  • “Why haven’t I done my most important to-do?”
  • “Why haven’t I stopped doing my most important not-to-do?”
  1. Define your fears clearly (Once identified ask yourself this series of questions):
  • What is the worst-case scenario if I did what I’m considering?
  • What are all the things I could do to minimize that from happening?
  • If the worst-case scenario happened, what steps could I take to minimise repair the damage

 

“The distance between dreams and reality is called action”

Healthy Lifestyle: Tips for the Holiday Season

Hi folk, the team at Taylored Health & Performance have compiled their top list for a healthy summer – 2017. So, read along and adopt some of the strategies (in no particular order) that we have utilised throughout 2016 to maximise your summer ahead. Remember to not sweat the small stuff, indulge a little and relax – you all have earned it! Enjoy.

DON’T STRESS
Your body is a homeostatic, finely tuned machine. Without a doubt you will consume more calories than necessary over summer, but don’t stress! Your body will ultimately find potential uses for the excess, consider this: heat production or reduction through sweat; new protein and bone production; increased heart rate; energy for exercise. Your body has a way of navigating its way back to its original state to maintain internal stability by eliminating excess calories.

HYDRATE
It is vital to be well hydrated this summer. Water is the most essential component of the human body through its many important roles including, assisting with transportation of nutrients and regulation of body temperature through sweating. Try the following to help keep you on track: Your body weight (kg’s) x 0.033 = litres to drink per day. Water drink reminder apps are also useful tools to help maintain your hydration levels, and always remember to have a drink bottle filled with water on hand.

MINDFULNESS
There are a number of techniques you can try to achieve a calm state of mind including moving forms like Yoga and Tai Chi. Two apps worth mentioning for to help you live in the present moment and remove stress are Insight Timer and Headspace. Both are free to download and only require a small amount of your day. Like a habit of regular exercise, aim for 10 minutes each day this summer to find that zen.

LOOK AFTER THAT GUT!
We advocate lemon juice/apple cider vinegar to help stimulate digestion through stomach acid and bile production. Start your day with the juice of half a lemon in warm water or apple cider vinegar. Why not throw in some bitter foods to aid digestive support this summer too. Some popular recommendations include turmeric, (turmeric lattes), good quality sourced dark chocolate, and leafy greens like Spinach and Kale.

STAY CONSISTENT
It is fair to say there will be a few late nights over the break, but try to not make it a habit. If you are camping outdoors, stick to the routine of going to bed when the sun has completely fallen, and rise when the sun rises. Stay consistent with 7 – 8 hours’ sleep on most nights. Try to stay within 2 hours of your normal sleep cycle, otherwise this will affect your circadian rhythm.

EXERCISE & MOVE
Whether it is brisk walking or practicing a Squat pattern, any form of movement will increase blood flow to organs and oxygenated blood throughout the body, helping remove accumulating toxins and wastes. Plan ahead and incorporate some incidental exercise like cycling or walking with the family. A beach run followed by a swim in the water is a must this Kiwi summer.

KOMBUCHA
Try drinking this delicious probiotic soda this summer to assist your stomach in breaking down and digesting food better, while also eliminating toxins and removing excess hormones from your system. It is suggested to begin slowly and wean yourself into it. Try this delicious recipe adapted from BePure:

BePure Kombucha Mocktail                                                                                                                   

  • 150 ml plain or ginger flavoured kombucha                                                                                       
  • 100 ml sparkling mineral water or unflavoured soda water                                                 
  •  1 sprig of mint                                                                                                                                                
  • Juice of 1 lime or lemon

Garnish with 1 Tablespoon of pomegranate seeds, fresh blueberries or strawberries, 2 slices of ginger.

Method: Place kombucha, mineral water, mint and lime in a tall glass with ice. Muddle to mix it all.

Reflect and Plan
With everything wrapping up for the year, now is a great time to reflect on the past year and set your intentions for the year to come. Review all pillars of your life: Work, Family, Personal/Social, mind, Physical/Health, Financial & Spiritual. Once you have completed where you are at currently then do the same for where you want to be in a years’ time. Once completed identify 3 key areas that are most important to you, that you want to improve. From here make these your 3 key intentions for the year to live by. Don’t stop there, the most important step is to recite them each morning and live with purpose!

 

Wherever you may be this summer, ensure it is a safe and happy one.

 

Merry Christmas & Happy New Year from the team at Taylored Health & Performance

Just Breathe: Get on top of your Stress

When you are stressed, either your late for work, trying to meet a deadline, your sympathetic nervous is engaged, increasing your heart rate and speeding up your breath. If you become chronically (long term) stressed this can become a serious issue as elevated cortisol (stress hormone) can be incredibly taxing on your body with a whole list of adverse effects. Therefore, it becomes vital that we recognise these responses and regain control.
Stress is a greatly miss understood concept, I often get told by clients that they are not stressed because they believe stress to be a mental state. Stress is a multifaceted response to pressure and tension being placed on the body. Stress could be anything from: An unhealthy gut, injury, muscle imbalance, hormonal imbalance, poor hydration, work & life stress etc. Regardless of the stressor the body will respond the same with the secretion of cortisol (Stress hormone) and up-regulate your sympathetic nervous system.

 

Sympathetic vs Parasympathetic Responses
Sympathetic nervous responses
The body speeds up, tenses up and becomes more alert. Functions that are not essential for survival are shut down. Following are the specific reactions of sympathetic nervous system:
• Increase in heart rate
• Dilation of bronchial tubes in the lungs and pupils in the eyes
• Contraction of muscles
• Release of adrenaline from the adrenal gland
• Conversion of glycogen to glucose, to provide energy for the muscles.
• shut down of processes not critical for survival
• Digestive process is put on hold
• Decrease in urinary output

Parasympathetic nervous system
Counterbalances the sympathetic nervous system. It restores the body to a state of calm. The specific responses are:
• Decrease in heart rate
• Constriction of bronchial tubes in the lungs and pupils in the eyes
• Relaxation of muscles
• saliva production: the stomach moves and increases secretions for digestion.
• increase in urinary output
The sympathetic system is extremely vital in the right context but long term stimulations is extremely detrimental to our health as you can see above with all the adverse effects associated with the sympathetic nervous system. Therefore, it is key to intensify stress triggers and put strategies in place to regain control of your system.

Stressed? Just Breathe…….
Reducing stress is as simple as breathing. Breathing has been directly correlated to impacting the parasympathetic nervous system which controls your rest, relax, and digest response. When the parasympathetic system is dominant, your breathing slows, your heart rate drops, your blood pressure lowers as the blood vessels relax, and your body is put into a state of calm and healing.
It is important to note that breathing will only assist with stress short term. Therefore, it is vital that you identify the root of your stress and get on top of it to prevent repeated stimulation.

4 : 7 : 8 Breathing Technique
There are many breathing techniques you can utilise from progressive relaxation to mindfulness to other breathing variations. Though my experience with stressed clients I have found this technique to be best bang for your buck as it doesn’t require much time and can be done anywhere in any position. It is a great tool to have in your back pocket when stress arises, this technique will give you the ability to regain that control over your bodies response. As you would expect a great tool to help induce sleep and to calm your nerves. I often use this technique prior to public speaking to calm my system.
Technique:
• Exhale completely through your mouth, making a whoosh sound.
• Close your mouth and inhale quietly through your nose to a mental count of four.
• Hold your breath for a count of seven.
• Exhale completely through your mouth, making a whoosh sound to a count of eight.
• This is one breath. Now inhale again and repeat the cycle three more times for a total of four breaths.
Note If you have trouble holding your breath, speed the exercise up but keep to the ratio of 4:7:8 for the three phases. With practice, you can slow it all down and get used to inhaling and exhaling more and more deeply.