Quote “Early to bed and early to rise, makes a man healthy wealthy and wise”  ~Benjamin Franklin

I started this wellness journey a few years ago when i hit a wall and faced reality. At that point i didn’t have anywhere else to detour but to turn and face the music. For the first time in 30 something years i learned who i was, who brought me here and why. Life is bigger than a journey of self discovery. For the first time i understood who Jesus was and why we have people like mother Teresa.

I was drawn to wellness for a quest to find my own answers to a healthy living journey. I would lie to you if i say i was obese at some point in my life because that’s not the case. I also am blessed to have not experienced any diet issues, allergies problems, gluten and all that (thank God). Wellness for me was real about finding the answer to a bigger picture than just what makes us un-well. I mean i could’ve gone to college to become a doctor but that was not my thing. I’m just looking for answers to live a healthier life without being a doctor.

If you look at struggles people go through in life, at the top of the list is health related. Yes, sometimes people are financially broke but lack of money is not a threat on your life. Health on other hand is the center of life. We all quest to live healthier, productive, and longer so we  can function as normal citizens who contribute to the society. You can’t do much when you are in bed. I wonder if we solve health issues then the world will be a better place!  There is no easy answer. All in all “what is health mean to you?”

Reflecting my journey, i wanted to leave 2015 with a positive note as well set another positive tone for the in-coming year. I can’t do it all alone except with the guidance of the Holy Spirit. 2016 will be interesting. I mean with this presidential election and other things going on in the world, my goal is to help as many people as i can while i am helping myself because at the end of the day charity starts at home.

So, Each January, roughly one in three Americans resolve to better themselves in some way. When making resolutions, health and fitness is without doubt on top of everyone’s list. To sweat, to feel strong and healthy. To turn the cellulite into muscle. But for all the good intentions, only a few of us keep our resolutions. They’re fun to make but extremely difficult to maintain. What follows is a list of 15 things I did in 2015 that helped me keep up the enthusiasm and make it through the year. If you are looking for effective ways of changing your life for the better, then you’ll be sure to find useful information here. Please, try to keep it simple and make it tangible. Start your New Year Right.

1.Find your starting point
Yes there is a beginning to everything in life. A starting point. Where you start is not my business but i am going to reveal my starting point. I start a day with a word from scriptures. I believe by doing so, i communicate with my creator who knows everything about my past, present and future. He has a clear path for me therefore i need to find out what it is from him. You don’t have to be religious person to believe that the Bible is God’s Word. It is inspired and accurate. It is our perfect guide in all matters of life. If you want to start yours with a cup of coffee, a stretch, yoga, a mile run or whatever it is start. Set a positive tone for a day.

2. Skip Noises
When i started this health and wellness journey i was hungry for information. The problem was not the content deficiency on marketplace rather too much of it. The more i came across materials the more i got confused. There are so much information available at our fingertips today than any other time in history yet people are still struggling with the same issues if not more because everything is all over the place. The floods of books, dvd’s, podcast, blogs, TV & radio shows, Doctors, Nutritionist, Gurus, Youtubers, Instagrammers, fads and so forth is too much for a regular person to grasp. Look, our brains was designed to take a certain amount of information for use and bypass the rest. Our attention span is so small and it should or else we would all be locked in the mad house somewhere.

What i am trying to say is KISS. Take the simplest route you can find and run on it. We can make our lives as complex as we want or as simple as we choose. Most people fail because they complicate everything. Go back to basics and surely goodness and love shall follow you.

3. Write your own rules

write your own rules
write your own rules

Are you prepared for a successful year ahead? If you don’t define your own plan, you’ll have to settle for someone else’s plan, and I don’t want that to happen to you this coming year. A person who wrote a book or tell you to eat this not that, do this not that is not smarter than you. You’ve an obligation to take care of yourself. There is no magic pixie dust and there is no one size fits all. Formulate your own game plan. Success comes from commitment to small steps, repeated each and every day of the year.

4. Turn your negatives into positives
Mark Twain wrote, “What a wee little part of a person’s life are his acts and his words! His real life is led in his head, and is known to none but himself. All day long, the mill of his brain is grinding, and his thoughts, not those other things, are his history.” Don’t let things get you down. We all hit roadblocks in life and the way we handle those situations are what define us. There is a positive side to every situation. Find that positivity and let it guide you in the right direction. Apostle Paul wrote this “Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.” Phillipians 4:8

5. Work out anywhere
No more excuses. You can work out from anywhere at anytime. Seriously, even at the airport while waiting for your next flight to Zimbabwe. No one will believe it, but I hardly go to a gym. I work out in my house in my pajamas and do Jillian Michael’s youtube videos or GIAM TV. You should do what you can where you are with tools you have. It can’t get simply than that.

6. Love Yourself
One of my favorite song of all the time is Whitney Houston’s Greatest love of All (1985). “Learning to love yourself is the greatest love of all” but how do you do that? If you’re beating yourself up, change the scenery. Take a walk, take a nap, take a bath, read scripture, pray. Switch it up so you focus on other things. Break out the good stuff.  Put on a cute outfit, a red lipstick because —a cute outfit makes a person feel better—you never know who you’ll run into.

7. Forget the past
The past sometimes haunt us. There are a lot of people who want you to fail, don’t deal with them. Stay in your own lane and keep moving forward. The older you get them less people you know and the easier it gets to get rid of unwanted. Believe me you don’t have to wait until you get old to do this.

8. Don’t forget your ‘Me’ time…
There are times when you want to completely disconnect. You just want to be by yourself. I love my “ME”.  I have one of those neck pillows with beads in it that you stick in the microwave and put around your neck. There are probably mouse in there because I’ve had it for over a decade. But it’s amazing and smells like chamomile and calms me down. What’s yours:)

9. Don’t forget the girls
When you have downtime, in a cab or an airport, call everybody, email everybody. And do a girls’ night where you can catch up a bunch of different friends at once!

10. Build a sound to-do list
There is an app for that. The 1-3-5 rule makes it easy to prioritize your day. Choose 1 big thing, 3 medium things, and 5 small things to accomplish. It helps to prioritize. On any given day, assume that you can only accomplish one big thing, three medium things, and five small things, and narrow down your to-do list to those nine items. That’s it! So, to give it a whirl-we’ve even created a template you can use to try it out! Download, print a few copies, and spend the rest of your days this week focusing on the few things that matter most.

11. Swear off bad-mouthing others
You know what’s a happiness zapper? Talking badly about other people. There’s something gross about it, and on some level, you know it. Because it says something about you, too. The scripture says “Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.” Ephesians 4:29 By the way anything bad you say about someone, will affect yourself one way or the other. It is just the principle of life therefore if you want good thing to follow you, treat others the way you’d love to be treated no matter hoe they treat you.

12. Get your zzz’s every night
Everything is important on this list, but this one is crucial. You need a good 8 hour sleep and if you can’t get 8 then 7 will do it. I know this from experience when i don’t get my nite nite, i know exactly how not so great next day will become. Mental focus is important in everything we do from conversation to remembering things we need to do and when we lack a healthy sleep, we tend to be all over the place setting ourselves to disaster. Ditch those late night TV gossips for a quite book, poem, soft music, scriptures or meditation.

I’m one to testify that i used to enjoy table flipping, wine throwing, back stabbing late night angry housewives shows. I’ve grown from that and very proud of myself. I switch off TV at 9pm no matter what program is on. If i managed to do that, you too can quit bad habits that are slowing you down. My lifelong goal is getting a good night’s sleep. I really think it’s the key to health.

Be sure to start NOW: “Tomorrow is the favorite day of the week for procrastinators.”

Meal of The Week:

Filetto Di Cervo
Filetto Di Cervo

I discovered Valbella walking down the street in Meat Packing. The owner’s wife is amazing. When I saw it from the outside I liked it because it looked very impressive – like it was too good to be there and that’s a strong statement for the Meat Packing District. David, the owner, was there and he’s actually there every day! It’s the biggest element to a successful restaurant. In New York, you don’t find that an owner is on premise every day. He owns Valbella Midtown and also another restaurant, One If By The Land, Two If By The Sea, which was rated the most romantic restaurant in all of New York City. I went there once for Valentine’s Day dinner which was a success 😉 And now it’s my restaurant of choice for my TweF Club dinner, which I will explain another time.

Valbella is also great place where you can celebrate your birthday or any other events in your life. There are three private rooms in the back where I can guarantee are the best place to host a private soiree in the City. This year (2015), I hosted a dinner for the people that have been extremely influential in the past year. I also invited Oprah. She didn’t show up. Oh-well, may be someday. She is one of a few women i admire and respect in the world. She is also one of the members in my personal “Cabinet of Invisible Counselors” therefore i see her almost daily (grin), i just wanted bragging rights in-front of everybody. It’s a joy to celebrate life surrounded by the people that made it incredible.

Your Turn!
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