Transitioning to a Healthy Diet (and sticking with it)

tomato-2823820_1920, pixabay comm use

Melissa’s Rap: A co-worker recently asked me how I stay on track with healthy eating. My response was that due to food allergies and sensitivities, I just feel better when I eat healthier, so that is my driving force. But, after our conversation, his question stuck with me. I realized that there are some things that I do consistently to stay on track. I struggled with improving my dietary choices for decades, and while my reaction to some foods definitely forced me to eat healthier, there are certain things I’ve implemented that have kept me going. If you are on a mission to eat healthier, this post is for you.  Continue reading

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Helpful Steps to Managing Anxiety

Anxiety, Pixabay, Free for Comm Use

Melissa’s Rap: The earliest symptoms of anxiety I can remember were in Elementary School. I didn’t know what they were at the time. I struggled with anxiety all the way through high school and college and into adulthood. I still suffer from anxiety, but I have come a long way and have learned how to manage it better. My anxiety became so prevalent at such a young age, that it didn’t occur to me until much later in life that not everyone experiences life in this way.

For those who do experience anxiety regularly, those experiences can vary drastically. For some, it comes and goes, is usually triggered by a stressful incident, and is for the most part manageable. Others, like me, seem to have it always underlying, just beneath the surface. Certain situations, experiences, and even people can trigger it, and those triggers and the symptoms they experience as a result vary from person to person. Continue reading

Yoga for Healing Trauma


Sadness, Pixabay, Comm Use
Melissa’s Rap: According to Oxford Dictionary, trauma is defined as 1. a deeply distressing or disturbing experience or 2. physical injury. Regardless of the type of trauma, it inevitably has a tremendous impact on you and your ability to function in everyday life. Seeking therapy from a licensed mental health counselor and building a support system are very important steps for helping you heal after trauma. Yoga can be another effective tool you can utilize as well.

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Yoga for Cold and Flu

Melissa’s Rap: Being sick is never fun. It can be very draining and exercise is usually the last thing on your mind. But, yoga can be very beneficial when you aren’t feeling well. It can help get the energy flowing, jumpstart your lymph system and strengthen your immune system, which will help your body fight. 

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Ways of Coping: Self-Care for When Life Challenges You

Melissa’s Rap: Sometimes life throws us curveballs. Sometimes it feels like those curveballs are coming at us 90mph, one after the other and we can’t seem to stop them. We all cope with these curveballs differently. You may lock yourself in your bedroom with a bottle of wine and a pint of Ben and Jerry’s. Someone else may binge watch eight shows on Netflix and refuse to answer any messages. Another person might pick up a bat and take those curveballs on to the best of their ability. Me? I go one of two ways: anxious manic doer or utterly useless sloth. Either I go into action and basically stop sleeping, or I become completely useless and choose something similar to option A or B above. Neither of which is really healthy or effective.

As I’ve gotten older, though, I have learned something. I have to do the work to tackle those curveballs and that means different things depending on the situation. But one thing is for sure… I have to implement some key coping methods to get me through it.  Continue reading

Reconstruction Redo: Take 2

Melissa’s Rap: Sometimes things don’t go as planned. And sometimes you do everything right and everything falls into place except one detail. Unfortunately, that is often the case with reconstruction after a mastectomy. Some women will require three to four surgeries to get the reconstruction to take.  Continue reading

Pranayama: Breathe in Peace

Melissa’s Rap: Pranayama, control of the breath, is the basic foundation of any yoga practice. Sometimes it is your yoga. It is that important and that impactful of a practice. Focusing on your breath alone is so powerful, it can have profound effects on one’s health, both mentally and physically.  Continue reading

Chanting for Your Health

Melissa’s Rap: Last week, we reviewed some great yoga-centered steps to reducing stress and the effects of it on the body.  One of those steps was chanting, part of a practice that is often referred to as sound therapy. Continue reading

Yoga for Stress Relief

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Melissa’s Rap: The topic of Yoga for Stress Relief may seem a bit redundant, since yoga is known for reducing stress more than anything else. Perhaps it is, but as a yoga instructor and a woman who has dealt with chronic anxiety for much of my life, I do feel that some poses and practices are more effective than others in reducing stress in one’s life.
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