Everywhere you look, there are heart healthy choices you can make; specialty shakes, heart healthy butter, heart conscience exercise programs. You can even head to a big box store and get your groceries, grab a new outfit, pick up a gift and card for an upcoming event and sit down in a chair for a quick blood pressure check. Being HEART healthy is not only trendy, but a really smart thing to do - as a matter of fact, it can have a positive impact on your whole life. I have found that intentionally being HEART healthy has absolutely added to my better health (in more ways then one). Read on to see which heart I am referring to today...
My kitchen really is the HEART of our home. We've made and shared many memories around my kitchen table. Great meals yes, but also homework (happy and not so happy), warming baby goats in the big sink, art projects, new chicks and ducklings, permission slips signed, creating surprise "breakfasts in bed", baking zillions of Christmas cookies, the sharing of triumphs and tragedies...you name it it has happened in my kitchen.
My kitchen is really a reflection of HOW we are as a family. When it is alive with new life like peeping chicks in the spring, being in my kitchen is a source of smiles. When it is covered with glue and markers and multi-colored paper, being in my kitchen fills you with a creative vibe. When every surface is covered with colorful sweet Christmas cookies, being in my kitchen is exciting and full of wonderful memories. When the smell of a cooking turkey or a roast in the slow cooker wafts from my kitchen, everyone feels a deep sense of safety and reassurance that they are loved and valued. My kitchen is where the good and bad of life flows deep.
As powerful for good my kitchen is, it can also be a source of anxiety and frustration if I am not careful. I'm going to let you in on a little secret. There is a direct correlation between how my kitchen looks each morning when I enter it to start my day and my personal happiness and energy level. I figured out a long time ago that I needed to be heart-healthy when it came to my kitchen and my sanity because of another very powerful correlation and that is the one between how I am doing emotionally and how the rest of my family does emotionally. We all know what happens if we don't take care of the heart...the entire body suffers!
I know it sounds a little crazy, but one of the most important ways I take care of myself is to not go to bed until my kitchen is clean. The rest of the house can be lacking and the laundry not quite finished, but my kitchen, the heart of our home, is put back together in ready for a NEW START each day. I literally and figuratively put away the "messes" of the day and set my sites on starting a new day in the morning. What I know for sure is that the whole concept of starting over is crucial to forward progress, emotional health and the abundance of hope.
Take care of your heart my friends. Take time to intentionally TAKE CARE OF YOU each day. It doesn't have to be a clean kitchen and it doesn't have to be accomplished alone - frankly, I have taught my children to be a very important part of how I get to go to bed with a clean kitchen - find what fills YOU up and invest in yourself! Make it happen.
Here's the important take away from this article...my kitchen isn't the healing force and it isn't the source of my families rise or fall - the truth is that I am. Me, the parent. I am the source of healing; my centeredness is where a sense of safety is created so that trust and new beliefs can be formed. My being consistently able to stay emotionally plugged into my children is what helps them be able to manage their anxiety enough to enjoy the good in their life or make it through the challenges. My hope is often what gives my kids the ability to push forward against even their own doubts and fears about themselves. My ability to start over every day and to teach my children that they can do the same has changed our lives for the better.
My HEART health is the foundation of the happiness of my entire family and so is yours. What are you going to do to take care of your heart today?
Remember...you are NOT alone,
P.S. November is National Adoption Awareness month - be sure to be watching my site www.tohavehope.com for all kinds of happenings you will want to be a part of!