It's never been easier to connect with someone on the other side of the world, yet it's so easy to feel disconnected from the people closest to us. We have more tools than ever to simplify tasks and accomplish more things quickly, yet our to-do lists have never been longer. Life is short, and time flies, especially in today's fast-paced world. These exercises are meant to help you S L O W down, enjoy life, and focus on the important things.
Top 10 Tips to Slow Down
#1 TAKE TIME TO PRIORITIZE DAILY OBJECTIVES
By focusing on the most important tasks to get done, we eliminate the stress of trying to accomplish everything at once. Just yesterday, my boyfriend walked by our hall table and said, "oh my gosh you have lists everywhere!" It's true - I keep lists on scrap paper all over our apartment, in my planner, on my phone, etc. And it's because I like to keep track of 1) when it's time to go to the store, 2) when it's time to pay the bills and which bills to pay, 3) daily to-do's, 4) emails that need to be sent and to who, etc. etc.
I highly recommend investing in a daily planner if you're a pen to paper kind of girl. I buy mine for less than $10 at TJMaxx or Home Goods, and it is the most satisfying thing to be able to write a list for that day, week, month, or whenever - and then cross it off as you conquer things!
#2 CUT PERSONAL INTERNET USE IN HALF
Technology has become a major element in most of our lives. Social networking, email, and web surfing hinder our ability to focus by throwing hundreds of ideas at us. Reduce your internet use by 50% and use that time to explore new hobbies, exercise, or meditate.
Okay out of all of these tips, I know this one is my greatest struggle. Especially since most of my day revolves around being on my phone, computer, and camera - so that I can create content for my business. When I spent time with my mum over the holidays, I told her I wanted to get back into knitting - so I can keep busy at night. I kid you not, almost every night after dinner you can find me watching Netflix on my computer, while starring and scrolling mindlessly on my phone -- whaaaat! I want to improve this habit asap and I think a knitting project is a great place to start.
#3 ENJOY NATURE, GET OUTSIDE MORE
Take a 5-10 minute break to step outside and breathe fresh air. Disconnect from the rest of the world and admire the beauty of nature.
Being outside is an instant mood booster! It's a free stress reliever, good for mental health, puts a smile on your face, you're less likely to pick up a virus since you're not breathing the same recycled indoor air, plus it allows you to be grateful for all the beauty this earth has to offer. Don't believe me, try it.
#4 EAT SLOWER
A lot of us speed through meals, missing the chance to appreciate our food's textures and flavors. Start to chew slower and fully experience the smell, taste, and texture of your food. Another reason to eat slower and chew more? Better digestion friends! Yep, it's true.
No one can serve well if they are bloated and constipated and experiencing acid reflux meal after meal. Studies suggest chewing for 30 counts, but I say chew until your food feels mushy and I'd say you're good to go. Also, practice putting down your utensil each time you take a bite; this forces you to slow down, chew, and then get more, vs. just shoveling more and more food in!
#5 CONNECT WITH FAMILY & FRIENDS
We all want to spend quality time with close friends and family, but how often do we get to truly listen and connect? Put away the cell phones and steer clear of noisy environments. Connect on a deeper level.
Have you ever tried the rule at a family/friend dinner where everyone stacks their phone in the middle of the table, and whoever reaches and looks at their phone first, pays the bill?! It's a good one.
#6 MAKE TIME FOR YOURSELF
When did you last spend valuable time with yourself? Take a night to find a new book, watch a favorite movie, try yoga, meditate, or cook a new recipe. I love creating content for my social media, blog, emails, etc. but it can be exhausting and overwhelming. Insert my knitting idea here also!!
#7 GIVE YOURSELF MORE TIME
Some of us like to stick to a tight schedule and plan all our daily events. Next time you're jotting down new tasks in your planner, factor in a few extra minutes when estimating how long things will take. This will help you not rush through daily tasks.
#8 TAKE THE SCENIC ROUTE
Next time you're driving somewhere, take the scenic route. Driving through open fields, mountains, or in view of a city skyline can be very relaxing. Or maybe you're like me, living in a new and unfamiliar area, every time I get in my car I have to use my GPS... maybe I'll try to not rely on immediate direction and get lost!
#9 SIT WITH YOUR EYES CLOSED BEFORE STARTING WORK
Even just a few moments of meditation can set the tone for the rest of your day. Try to empty your mind and take deep breaths before jumping into your tasks.
For about 3 years now, I've been greeted with anxiety attacks in some of the most inconvenient situations. How do I overcome those and move along with the rest of my day? Deep breaths. Inhale for 6 counts, exhale for 4 counts. This exercise brings me back to my feet in some of the darkest times.
#10 REMEMBER YOUR GOALS & ASPIRATIONS
Each morning when you wake up, take a few moments to think about your life goals and aspirations. Recall the milestones you've already reached in your life, and your drive to achieve new ones. Try doing this for five minutes before getting out of bed to start your day.
I can't be the only one who reaches for my phone within the first couple of minutes I'm awake in the morning. . . anyone else? It's something I'm aware of and something I know I need to improve. One thing that I've been thinking might help would be to invest in a simple clock where I can set an alarm instead of my phone, and that will cut back on how soon i'm starting screen and scrolling time!
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If you are ready to finally break old habits and to create the life and body that you want, reach out for a free consultation today! I would love to chat with you and see you improve in so many areas of your life. Contact me today.
Disclaimer: this post was written with notes from my studies at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition. Images are my own.
I'll be honest, I wouldn't say that brownies are my favorite dessert, but when I eat them, I like them to be 1) thick, 2) dense and dark choc flavored, and 3) healthy. These pumpkin brownies are everything my brownie dreams are made of - chocolatey, creamy, mousse-y. . .
You're probably reading the recipe title and thinking: Why take such a simple recipe and mess with it? Do they taste like veggies? What's the texture like? Will anyone know there is pumpkin in there?
Adding the vegetable means you're feeding your body all the nutrient-rich benefits that come from pumpkin with every bite. For this recipe, I was determined to make a flavorful, paleo pumpkin brownie, and while the protein powder was added for an extra boost of nutrients, I used my Pumpkin Spice flavor, and holy moly you guys - so. freakin. good. Took them to the next level!
The Power of Pumpkin
The rich orange color of pumpkin means that it's packed with beta carotene, an antioxidant that converts to vitamin A once consumed. Vitamin A helps to keep our immune system in shape, preserves vision (similar to carrots!), and keeps our skin looking great. Additionally, pumpkin is pact full of fiber, making it more satiating; it's full of potassium, too (key to keeping our bodies hydrated and organs running smoothly).
What About the Other Secret Ingredients
Oh you guys should know by now that if I'm sneaking some added "goodies" into my treats, I'm gonna use more than one! Besides pumpkin, yep, you read it right - avocado and banana have paid a visit. Avocados are one of my favorite foods. They're an excellent source of healthy fat, protein, and give such a creamy texture. As for the banana, whenever baking, I love to use natural sources for sweeteners. This is great for adding a sweet flavor, without using refined sugars. You'll notice that banana and maple syrup are the only things sweetening this recipe up, and honestly you don't even notice that there's "no sugar added" (which is my preference in treats!).
Let's whip up these pumpkin brownies!
Paleo-Friendly Pumpkin Brownies
Yield: 9 | Total Time: 45 minutes
Paleo-Friendly . Gluten-Free . Vegetarian
1 cup pumpkin puree
1/2 cup banana (approx. 3/4 banana)
3 Tbsp pure maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 cup coconut flour
2 Tbsp arrowroot powder
1/2 cup cacao powder
2 Tbsp Ancient Nutrition Bone Broth Protein (Pumpkin Spice) *optional
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 tsp baking soda
Step 1: Preheat oven to 375 °F.
Step 2: Line an 8x8 pyrex or brownie tin with parchment paper.
Step 3: In a food processor, combine avocado, pumpkin puree, banana, maple, and vanilla. Blitz until creamy.
Step 4: Add in cacao powder and protein powder. Blitz. Add in your eggs, one at a time, and blitz.
Step 5: In a separate bowl, combine coconut flour, arrowroot powder, salt, and baking soda.
Step 6: Combine dry ingredients with wet, and blitz until smooth.
Step 7: Transfer to your pyrex, and bake for 35 minutes (give or take, dependent on your oven).
Step 8: Once they are baked, allow to cool fully before cutting into - I actually placed mine on a plate and popped them in the fridge for about an hour, and then came back to cut them! Not necessary, but made them easy to cut and less messy as they have a mousse-like texture.
Note: Be sure to store these in the fridge, they're super moist, you'll wanna keep them fresh!
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If you're ready to finally break old habits and to create the life and body that you want, reach out for a free consultation today! I would love to chat with you and see you improve in so many areas of your life.
Use the contact form here or email me at email@example.com.
*This post was written from my research through the Dr. Axe website. Images are a mix of my own and from Pinterest. For a discount on my favorite Ancient Nutrition Bone Broth Protein, head to store.draxe.com and use code: GIGIIKENT for 20% off your first purchase!
Disclosure: Some of the links above are affiliate links, meaning, at no cost to you, I will earn commission if you click through and make a purchase.
I was so excited when Ancient Nutrition came out with their new line of Organic CBD Hemp products this year! Their new line of USDA Certified Organic CBD Hemp products feature their beloved tasty drink mixes and oils - you won't be able to resist upgrading your morning routine.
I was grateful to recently have received a few of these CBD products: Organic CBD Hemp Golden Chai drink mix, Organic CBD Hemp Cinnamon Oil, and Multi-Collagen Ultra in Vanilla Chai flavor!
I've been incorporating AN into my daily routine for about 3 years now. I started with their Bone Broth Pre-Workout and from there, I hopped on the Collagen train and have been hooked ever since. They always provide unique flavors that are so versatile for either simple drinks, or add-ins to your fave healthy treat recipes!
Peanut Butter CBD Cookies
1 cup peanut butter
1 cup coconut sugar
1 scoop Ancient Nutrition's Multi Collagen (+CBD and MCT) in Chai flavor
Step One: Preheat oven to 350 F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, and set aside.
Step Two: Mix together all ingredients. Roll into balls, place on baking sheet. Flatten and apply your fancy fork marks.
Step Three: Bake for 10 minutes. Allow to cool on a cooling rack.
Enjoy! Store in an airtight container on the counter, freeze to save for longer!
Have you ever gone through a period of time where you make Friday night specifically "Pizza Nights" ? Obvi girl 🙋🏼♀️🙋🏼♀️ same!
If that's the case, make these on your next 🍕 Friday — Sweet Potato Flatbreads.
Gluten-Free Sweet Potato Flatbreads
5 large eggs
1 sweet potato, baked and peeled
1/4 c water
1 1/2 c almond flour
3 tsp coconut oil
Step 1: Place all ingredients, except flour and oil, in a food processor. Blitz slowly at first, then gradually increase.
Step 2: While blitzing, remove the lid and begin to add in the flour.
Step 3: Pour mixture into bowl and set aside while you heat up a non-stick skillet over med heat.
Step 4: Add coconut oil. Using a ladle, pour out a small portion of batter, spread evenly. Allow to cook on first side about 2 minutes, then flip.
Step 5: Cook another 2 mins, and then place on baking sheet. Top with your fave pizza toppings! I chose fresh arugula, tomato, greek olives, and vegan cheese that I just rolled into "mozz" balls.
Easy, Gluten-Free bread recipe that's delicious, moist, perfect for sandwiches, pb toast, or by the slice!
Gluten-Free Sandwich Bread
1 1/4 cup water
1/4 cup olive oil, or 4 Tbsp butter
3 eggs, room temperature
1 1/4 tsp salt
3 Tbsp coconut sugar, or honey
3 1/4 cup Bob's Redmill Gluten-Free 1:1 Baking Flour
2 tsp active dry yeast
If you have a bread machine.
Step 1: Add all ingredients, in the order listed, into a bread machine loaf pan.
Step 2: Place pan in the bread machine and select "gluten-free" mode, then start. If you don't have this setting, override the program and allow it to knead for 16-20 mins. After 3-5 minutes of kneading, gently scrape down the ingredients stuck on the sides of the pan with a spatula.
Step 3: Using GF setting - The bread machine will take care of the rest including the rise and baking, It will beep when done, about 2 hrs and 15 minutes from the start. No GF setting - allow to rise for 1 cycle (GF bread only needs 1 rise, and no punch down), then 1 hour for bake.
If you don't have a bread machine.
Step 1: Add all ingredients, in the order listed, into a mixing bowl.
Step 2: Use a stand-up mixer with the kneading attachment, or simply use those muscles to knead the dough until homogenous. This will get sticky, my friends.
Step 3: Gently transfer dough to a greased baking pan. Cover with a kitchen towel, leave in a warm place and allow to rise for 1 hour. Once it has about doubled in size, it's time to bake.
Step 4: Preheat oven to 400 F. Bake bread for 25-30 minutes, or until cooked all the way through. If it's browning on the top too quick, cover with foil, and return to continue baking until cooked through.
When I was in Girl Scouts, I can remember we had planned this "Spa Day" with the girls so we could earn some sort of a Self Care badge. The mums came together and helped us set up different stations where each of us could be pampered. For example we did nail painting, hand massages, foot baths, etc. And then we also included a potluck-style luncheon that featured healthy foods and treats. One of the mums made these "tea sandwiches" which consisted of: bread, butter, cucumber, and sea salt. At first, I was like. . .um, what? But once I gave them a taste, they were sooo refreshing! The combo of cooled cucumbers + sea salt + creamy butter. OMG.
My point of sharing that story - because this bread is SO delicious for Cucumber + Butter Sammies. I'll share the easy recipe below, and you let me know if you give them a try & what you think!
Gluten-Free Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies
2 cups (240 g) Bob's Redmill GF 1:1 Baking Flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 cups (215 g) organic coconut sugar
1 cup (160 g) dairy-free chocolate chips
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup water
1 tsp vanilla extract
Step 1: Preheat the oven to 375°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
Step 2: In a large bowl, mix together flour, baking soda, salt, coconut sugar and chocolate chips. Set aside.
Step 3: Whisk oil, water and vanilla together in a measuring cup, then add to the dry mix. Stir together by hand until a dough forms, about 2-3 minutes. The dough will look very dry at first. Keep mixing until a dough forms and can hold together when pressed into a ball.
Step 4: Let the dough rest at room temperature for 10 minutes while the dough fully hydrates. Don't skip this!
Step 5: Scoop cookie dough into 24 balls. Bake for 11 minutes. Allow cookies to cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes before removing to a cooling rack. If you have more dough, repeat until all used up. Enjoy!
Store in a glass container on the counter for soft texture and freshness.