Friday, November 14, 2014
I've heard for many years of the acronym, HALT, when you're tempted to have a drink.
It stands for Hungry - Angry - Loneliness - Tired
When you want a drink, you're supposed to stop and ask yourself if that urge is really one of these things, and then satisfy that need in a healthier way. It works for some people. But for me - these things aren't what tempt me to have a drink. I've come up with a few other words that I can relate to better:
l. "H" for me is for "Happy"
I'm a very happy person. I always want to celebrate something. Not only all the holidays, and birthdays, but paydays, and "date nights" with my sweetie, and visits with friends, or a meal at a restaurant, or a special purchase delivered to my door. You name it. I want to mark the occasion and enjoy the "good times". And I've come to believe that every occasion needs to have an alcoholic beverage.
My sweetie and I are going on a picnic at the beach - I want to bring along a bottle of wine and two wine glasses. We're having a Bar-B-Que on our patio - I want to have cold beer in a bottle. It's Cinco de Mayo - let's have margaritas. It's New Year's Eve - got to have champagne or Asti Spumante. What is Christmas Eve without Egg Nog ? You get the idea.
A new friend, BEECEE39, turned me on to a great "mocktail": Seltzer water or Club Soda with a splash of Cranberry Juice in a tall tumbler. I added a wedge of lime. It looks so festive and pretty and it's not "too sweet", but cold and refreshing. I love it. It's going to be my new "go to" beverage. I don't need alcohol. I can celebrate anything with my new "Cranberry Fizz".
2. "A" is for - "ANXIETY"
Dr Phil says that "anger" is usually really "hurt" or "frustration". That is so true for me. I don't think that I experience "anger" very often. But "anxiety" - I have that all the time, so I'm going to use the "A" for that.
I have an over-active adrenal gland, and frequently have way too much adrenaline surging through my body. I can feel it. If someone says something upsetting to me - I feel a wave of adrenaline through my stomach as if I just headed down on a roller coaster. Often for no apparent reason, I have "heart palpitations" or a pounding heart that feels like anxiety. I want to have a drink to "calm down" my racing heart. I've been on a 24 hours heart monitor and my heart is healthy. It's just that darn adrenaline which I interpret as "anxiety".
So if my urge to drink is really "anxiety" (heart palpitations), I'm going to take a nap, take a bubble bath, or take a walk. One of those three should relax me and slow down my heart rate. (Caffeine has a lot to do with it as well, so I really need to eliminate that.)
3. "L" is for "Lounging Around"
I have a wonderful sweetheart and we're together almost 24/7 (which we love) so I'm rarely "lonely". But since we are retired, I have tons of free time, and spend a lot of time just "lounging around". A nice beverage with a good movie is a nice way to pass the time. Or when one of our favorite TV shows comes on, I'd love to mix a drink to enjoy while we watch it. And then there's all the time I spend on the computer, especially late at night if my sweetie goes to bed early. I love to have a drink to relax me and make me sleepy enough to go to bed. Sometimes we play music on YouTube for hours, and Johnny is always drinking. I want one too, of course.
Lately I've been getting in the habit of having just ice water to sip while we "lounge around". Now I'm going to try the "Cranberry Fizz". I can have just as good of a time WITHOUT the alcohol, (and remember it).
"T" is for "Triggers"
There are also other times and things, that especially "trigger" the urge to have a drink. One of those is after making love. I've never smoked, but I understand a lot of smokers really want to "light up" after sex. Well, during "after-glow", I usually have an urge to have a drink. I've tried drinking a large glass of cold water afterwards - and that has usually done the trick to get past the urge. I think I'm really just thirsty.
Another time is when friends have dropped by to hang out and visit. They bring along alcohol to share, and not only are they drinking in front of me, but the alcohol is FREE. We've told one couple that they definitely cannot bring hard liquor over to our place ever again. If they visit - they can only bring beer. One time a neighbor offered us a free bottle of tequila. It was just a gift. I really had to be strong to say "No, thanks" to her. I can resist going to the liquor store to buy something, but when it's delivered free to our door, it is REALLY difficult to resist.
So that's HALT for me: HAPPY, ANXIOUS, LOUNGING AROUND, or TRIGGERED
When I get an urge to have a drink, I'm going to ask myself if it is really one of these occasions. And then I'll take steps to act accordingly. Alcohol can no longer be the "answer" for me. I can't stop after "one" or "two" - so don't even get started. No more.
Tuesday, November 04, 2014
Here it is: My New Vision Board which reads "ALCOHOL - FREE"
I want to remain "positive" about my new status in life. I've got lots of positive words to reminds me of the benefits of being alcohol-free which include:
I love the photo of the girl - she looks so healthy and happy.
I have lots of pink hearts and sparkles.
This new vision board just makes me SMILE when I look at it.
The KEY phrase is "Stay Positive - See Results"
That's so true isn't it ! ?
ATTITUDE IS EVERYTHING
Every day that I remain "Alcohol-free" I get healthier and therefore, happier.
I'm feeling good.
I'm gettier healthier.
Monday, October 27, 2014
I've been Sparking for over 2 years now and I'm 30 pounds down from my starting weight. I've had many alcohol-free streaks, the longest being 107 days over the holidays last year. Right now I'm on Day #13 alcohol-free with no end in sight.
Been thinking about where I get my inspiration to "keep going". There are a few KEY PEOPLE who inspire me everyday. Here is a little list of who inspires ME:
l. DR PHIL
Every afternoon at 4 pm, my sweetheart, Johnny, and I sit down to watch an hour of Dr Phil. We find him very educational and his shows are always a great topic for conversation. Johnny and I are together almost 24/7 so we run out of things to discuss. We both love Dr. Phil.
On one of his shows a few years ago, there was a man who had a problem with alcohol. Dr. Phil told him the solution was very simple: "Just Don't Drink", he told the man. REALLY ? Dr. PHIL ? Is it that EASY ? Well, he's right. That would solve the problem. "Just don't drink". And you won't have all the problems associated with drinking. But we all know that for many people, resisting alcohol is not all that EASY ! I'm one of them. Fortunately Dr. Phil went on the say that he would "provide help to do that depending on what he needed . . . be it inpatient or outpatient treatment. Okay. That makes sense. Dr. Phil was going to help him deal with his alcohol problem. But I've never forgotten that episode. Sometimes the solution to a problem is really very simple. In this case . . . "just don't drink".
Thanks Dr. Phil. You always inspire me. (And I love all his funny "sayings" that he throws in there.)
2. Paul in www,stopdrinkingalcohol.com
This is the website that is my "GO TO" place whenever I need a little more willpower to resist having a "drink". Last month I was tempted to walk down to the convenience store and pick up a $10 bottle of wine for the evening. I went on this website and donated the $10 instead to Paul. He has lots of basic, simple lists that strengthen my resolve to resist alcohol and lots of ways that help to resist having that drink. He's added some videos that you can just sit back and relax and watch instead of mixing a drink. I like that he tells you that you don't HAVE to go to AA to quit drinking. Lots of people can decide and succeed at being alcohol-free without going to AA. In the past it seemed that everybody believed AA was the ONLY WAY. AA is not for everybody.
3. Another PAUL . . . this one the Apostle Paul in the BIBLE.
Paul in the BIBLE was imprisoned for preaching Christianity and wrote over half of the New Testament, most of it from a prison cell. He wrote letters to the churches he had started. In his letter to the Ephesians, in Chapter 5 verse 18, he writes, "Don't get drunk on wine. For that will ruin your life. Instead be filled with the Holy Spirit" (New Living Translation).
Simple. Straight to the point. Notice that he didn't say "Don't drink wine AT ALL" Just "Don't get DRUNK". In other words, don't over-do. Don't over-indulge. A little in moderation is fine. Unfortunately, with many of us, when we have a "little" alcohol, we want to have "more" and "more". We lose our inhibitions and restraint. In my case, it's necessary to "not even start". If I get a little taste of wine, I'll want another glass, and another glass, and will drink the entire bottle. So I need to avoid alcohol completely. But this verse has inspired me for many years since I read it back in the 90's. "Instead be filled with the Holy Spirit". YES. God can give you all the "strength and willpower" you need to resist alcohol (or whatever is your particular weakness).
In Phillipians 4:13, Paul writes, "I can do all things through Christ Jesus who strengthens me." I bought a bracelet with this inscription, and It has been a constant reminder that when I'm tempted to have a drink, to say a little prayer instead. The Apostle Paul has truly been an inspiration to me.
4. Joel Osteen
We've been listening to Joel Osteen almost EVERY Sunday for eight years. In addition I've read several of his books. And I get an email with a little devotion from him every day. He is SUCH an inspiration. He is ALWAYS so motivational and positive. Basically he says that "With GOD, all things are possible !" which is a quote from Matthew 19:26.
I was around 200 pounds for many years. I tried to lose weight over and over. I would be successful for maybe 10 pounds but would always gain it back. I never believed that I could be thin again like I was when I was young. But I kept listening to Joel, Sunday after Sunday. Every week, I would be inspired to "stick with my plan and strive for my goals". And then, with the help of God, I actually lost 40 pounds. Joel was RIGHT ! "With God, all things ARE possible !" Thank you Joel. And THANK GOD !
5. And LAST, but definitely not LEAST, JESUS INSPIRES ME !
Matthew is my favorite book of the BIBLE. EVERYTHING that JESUS had to say is recorded in the book of Matthew: all the "words in red". My favorite quote is JESUS in Matthew 11:29 "Learn from me . . . and you will find rest for your souls".
How true that is. Read and listen to all JESUS had to say. Learn from the way He lived His life. JESUS is the KEY to HAPPINESS and CONTENTMENT in life.
I don't need alcohol to calm down and relax. JESUS is all I need. JESUS is the one to turn to when the going gets tough. JESUS will provide "rest for your soul".
So that's who inspires me the most: Dr. Phil, two Pauls, Joel Osteen, and most importantly, JESUS.
I've come a long way. But I still have a long way to go (20 more pounds to reach my goal weight of 155 pounds). I'm going to keep reading and listening to my KEY inspirational role models. I will NEVER GIVE UP. I CAN reach my goal. I WILL reach my goal. By the way, that's the name of Joel Osteen's latest book, "I CAN I WILL".
Who inspires you ?
Thursday, October 16, 2014
Did you know you can REVERSE Prediabetes
and PREVENT Type 2 Diabetes ?
First of all - What is Prediabetes ?
Prediabetes is a health condition that results when you have too much glucose, or sugar, in your blood, (but it is not yet high enough to be called "Diabetes".
What's the GOOD News ?
You can improve your condition and prevent the development of Type 2 Diabetes,
Who is at risk of Prediabetes ?
1. Age 45 or older
2. Overweight or obese
3. Being physically inactive
4. History of cardiovascular (heart) disease
5. High blood pressure - or being treated for high blood pressure (hypertension)
6. High cholesterol
7. Having a parent or sibling with diabetes
8. Having gestational diabetes during pregnancy
9. Giving birth to a baby weighing more than 9 pounds
10.In women, having polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS)
11.Having a family background that is African American, Alaska Native, Native American, Asian American, Hispanic/Latino, or Pacific Islander
12.Having a dark, velvety rash around your neck or armpits (known as acanthosis nigricans)
How do I know if I have Prediabetes ?
You need to get tested for a fasting blood glucose or sugar (FBS).
There are no typical physical symptoms of having Prediabetes, so many people are Prediabetic and do not yet know it. Talk to your doctor about getting tested.
How do you treat Prediabetes ?
Simply put: ACTIVITY and WEIGHT LOSS
Even a modest amount of weight loss can make a big difference. Experts suggest aiming for 5-10 % of your current body weight. That would be 10-20 pounds for a 200 pound person. This can actually prevent the development of Diabetes and reverse Prediabetes.
Physical activity will not only help you burn more calories and tone muscles, but will also significantly help with weight loss efforts. In addition, increased physical activity helps your body become more sensitive to insulin, the hormone that helps manage blood sugar levels.
If you have never been physically active, check with your doctor first and start out slow. Walking is a great form of exercise and a great way to start ! Aim for 30 minutes a day of activity and then, over time, increase your activity to 30-60 minutes per day.
Here are some ideas to increase your daily activity:
l. Use a pedometer and track your steps. Each mile is about 2000 steps.
2. Take the stairs instead of the elevator.
3. Take a quick walk during your lunch break at work.
4. Park at the far end of a parking lot and walk to the building.
5. Walk on a treadmill while you watch TV, read, or listen to music.
6. If your destination is not too far - consider walking there instead of hopping in the car.
7. Get a walking buddy
8. Find scenic places to take a walk.
9. Walk your dog.
I'm sure you can think of more.
Here are some weight loss tips:
1. Eat breakfast daily to give you energy and help you feel full
2. Drink calorie-free water ! Avoid all sweetened beverages. Avoid alcohol. Avoid artificially-sweetened beverages as well since they tend to make you hungrier and thirstier.
3. Follow the MYPLATE model in which 1/2 of your plate consists of fruits and vegetables.
4. Log on to SparkPeople every day and track your food and activity.
5. Be active for at least 30 minutes daily. Gradually increase the length of your activity as your fitness level improves.
Find out if you are Prediabetic, and if so, take steps to reverse this condition before it is too late. Take care of your health.
I was around 200 pounds for several years and was Prediabetic. With SparkPeople I have lost 30-40 pounds and now my fasting blood sugar is below 100. I walk almost every day.
Get An Email Alert Each Time GREEN-EYED-LADY Posts