Monday, July 4

Today is Monday, July 4, 2022.  Enjoying the warm breeze and spending the day with family and friends.

A quote by Robert Alan.  “Cultural differences should not separate us from each other, but rather cultural diversity brings a collective strength that can benefit all of humanity.”

Photo by: Dovapi

July is for sharing.  The act of sharing offers many health benefits.  When we give to others it has a positive effect on our brain.  Sharing allows us to connect more meaningfully and strengthens social connections.  For some, the first week of July is a holiday celebrated with friends and family.  For the beginning of July let’s explore ways to share our culture.  We can appreciate a culture by exploring its cuisine.

    • Research the history of a culture’s cuisine
    • Select a few recipes that you would like to experience
    • Visit a grocery store that specializes in ethnic foods
    • Host a dinner sharing the new recipes

Practice this Mindfulness Activity to Re-energize your Body and Mind whenever you need a moment to reset – while waiting, before, after, or to transition between activities:

    • Straighten your spine. Roll your shoulders back and down, smile to yourself, & relax your jaw.
    • Take slow deep belly breaths, allowing your stomach to rise with each breath in and relax with each breath out. You may find that each breath gets better and better. Allow your shoulders to relax on each exhale.
    • Practice Physical grounding
      • When you are sitting in your chair take a few seconds to feel your feet on the ground, feel your buttock on the seat, feel your back against the chair.
      • As your feet are grounded, with each deep belly breathe out, allow your shoulders to release and loosen.

Recharge yourself and share positive energy when you repeat:  

“I am [*Name*]. I can do this. As I connect to my inner self, I am open to the Happiness and positive energy around me. I send loving kindness and compassion to all people including me. Together, we can do great things.”

With gratitude and appreciation for all beings,

Naomi Parrella, MD & Fran Lee, FNP 

Friday, July 1

Today is Friday, July 1, 2022.  Recognizing the sound of the cardinal singing cheerfully and finding the red bird in the branches.

A quote by Andre Pough Sr., “Just when you think you know exactly how it’s going, some unexpected possibility shows up and it begins to get even better.’

Photo by Jen DeVos

July is for sharing.  The act of sharing offers many health benefits.  When we give to others it has a positive effect on our brain.  Sharing allows us to connect more meaningfully and strengthens social connections.  For some, the first week of July is a holiday celebrated with friends and family.  For the beginning of July let’s explore ways to share our culture.

    • Consider researching your family tree
    • Reach out to a family “elder” to share their memories of the family or family history
    • Host/attend a family reunion
    • Take a trip to where your grandparents were born

Practice this Mindfulness Activity to Re-energize your Body and Mind whenever you need a moment to reset – while waiting, before, after, or to transition between activities:

    • Straighten your spine. Roll your shoulders back and down, smile to yourself, & relax your jaw.
    • Take slow deep belly breaths, allowing your stomach to rise with each breath in and relax with each breath out. You may find that each breath gets better and better. Allow your shoulders to relax on each exhale.
    • Thinking of your physical body as your home, where you reside, think of deep breathing as like opening the windows on a bright sunny day with a nice breeze.
    • Become aware of how every breath that fills your body is like having wide open windows, filling your home with fresh, clean air and every breath out clears out and releases so that your home is a refreshed space for you to be in.
    • Experience the happy moment of being in your clean, refreshed home.
    • Smile, knowing that you can take moments to open and be present in this space, anywhere you are. Your body is your home.

Recharge yourself and share positive energy when you repeat:  

“I am [*Name*]. I can do this. As I connect to my inner self, I am open to the Happiness and positive energy around me. I send loving kindness and compassion to all people including me. Together, we can do great things.”

With gratitude and appreciation for all beings,

Naomi Parrella, MD & Fran Lee, FNP 

Wednesday, June 29

Today is Wednesday, June 29, 2022.  The trees grow lush with sunshine, rain and all the in-betweens.

A quote by Hal Borland, “If you would know strength and patience, welcome the company of trees.”

Photo by Sa Oku

Finding Joy in June. Launching the second half of the year, we focus on ways we can find and create joy.

The middle of the week is a great time to try a day of “Appreciation Awareness” to create moments of shared joy out of appreciation. For one day, with every encounter with someone, pause, reflect and genuinely appreciate something and share it with that person.

    • “I appreciate having a moment to talk to you.”
    • “I appreciate your sharing with me.”
    • “Your art is inspiring.”
    • “I appreciate this sunny day.”
    • “At least we get to work together on this.”
    • “I appreciate how you have taken care of …”
    • “This class is fun!” “The [theatrical/musical] performance is moving.:
    • “I am glad we have each other. We are stronger together.”

Practice this Mindfulness Activity to Re-energize your Body and Mind whenever you need a moment to reset – while waiting, before, after, or to transition between activities:

    • Straighten your spine. Roll your shoulders back and down, smile to yourself, & relax your jaw.
    • Take slow deep belly breaths, allowing your stomach to rise with each breath in and relax with each breath out. You may find that each breath gets better and better. Allow your shoulders to relax on each exhale.
    • Thinking of your physical body as your home, where you reside, think of deep breathing as like opening the windows on a bright sunny day with a nice breeze.
    • Become aware of how every breath that fills your body is like having wide open windows, filling your home with fresh, clean air and every breath out clears out and releases so that your home is a refreshed space for you to be in.
    • Experience the happy moment of being in your clean, refreshed home.
    • Smile, knowing that you can take moments to open and be present in this space, anywhere you are. Your body is your home.

Recharge yourself and share positive energy when you repeat:  

“I am [*Name*]. I can do this. As I connect to my inner self, I am open to the Happiness and positive energy around me. I send loving kindness and compassion to all people including me. Together, we can do great things.”

With gratitude and appreciation for all beings,

Naomi Parrella, MD & Fran Lee, FNP 

Wednesday, June 22

Today is Wednesday, June 22, 2022.  Watching the birds playing in the trees.

A quote by Danielle LaPorte, “Joy is the most magnetic force in the universe.”

Photo by Nicole Siparsky, MD. Rainbow Falls, Pisgah National Forest, North Carolina (2022).

Finding Joy in June.  As we start the second half of the year let’s focus on ways we can find joy.

Practice seeing and appreciating progress for your efforts towards an aspiration or goal. This builds opportunities for experiencing joy. Examples:

    • Track the word count and watch it increase as you write something to share.
    • Mark on the calendar everyday that you take action towards your goal & relish the increasing number of days you are taking action.
    • Add a photo or other memento in a scrapbook of each mini-milestone.
    • Review your activity monitor and notice when you increase steps, distance, calories, speed, intensity, frequency of activity.
    • Appreciate every course assignment or project you complete towards a degree or certificate.
    • Celebrate every day that you stay true to your intentions.

Use this Mindfulness Activity to Re-energize your Body and Mind whenever you need a moment to reset – while waiting, before, after, or to transition between activities:

    • Straighten your spine. Roll your shoulders back and down, smile to yourself, & relax your jaw.
    • Take slow deep belly breaths, allowing your stomach to rise with each breath in and relax with each breath out. You may find that each breath gets better and better. Allow your shoulders to relax on each exhale.
    • Repeat positive affirmations throughout your day, while smiling:
      • My mind is peaceful.
      • I choose to act and react peacefully.
      • I illuminate peace around me.

Recharge yourself and share positive energy when you repeat:  

“I am [*Name*]. I can do this. As I connect to my inner self, I am open to the Happiness and positive energy around me. I send loving kindness and compassion to all people including me. Together, we can do great things.”

With gratitude and appreciation for all beings,

Naomi Parrella, MD & Fran Lee, FNP 

Friday, June 10

Today is Friday, June 10, 2022. Feeling grateful for finding joy all around me.

A quote by Mark Twain. “To get the full value of joy you must have someone to divide it with.”

Photo by chendongshan

Finding Joy in June.  For the second half of the year, let’s focus on ways we can find joy. Being joyful can extend your life, relieve stress, and pain, and promote a healthy lifestyle.

Staying connected with others fosters opportunities to experience joy.

  • Organize a “pot luck” dinner with your neighbors
  • Form a walking group with your coworkers at lunch
  • Plan a regular family game night
  • Reconnect with some old classmates

Use this Mindfulness Activity to Re-energize your Body and Mind whenever you need a moment to reset – while waiting, before, after, or to transition between activities:

  • Straighten your spine. Roll your shoulders back and down, smile to yourself, & relax your jaw.  
  • Take slow deep belly breaths, allowing your stomach to rise with each breath in and relax with each breath out. You may find that each breath gets better and better. Allow your shoulders to relax on each exhale. 
  • As you continue to Belly breath, inhale past or current joyful moments, exhale difficult or challenging moments.

Recharge yourself and share positive energy when you repeat:  

“I am [*Name*]. I can do this. As I connect to my inner self, I am open to the Happiness and positive energy around me. I send loving kindness and compassion to all people including me. Together, we can do great things.”

With gratitude and appreciation for all beings,

Naomi Parrella, MD & Fran Lee, FNP 

Friday, June 3

Today is Friday, June 3, 2022. Thinking, “How can I share some joy today?”

A quote by Rumi.  “When you do things from your soul, you feel a river moving in you, a joy.”

Photo by Scott Carroll

Finding Joy in June.  For the second half of the year, let’s focus on ways we can find joy. Being joyful can extend your life, relieve stress, and pain, and promote a healthy lifestyle.

Spreading joy brings joy to others and to you as well.

    • Say “Good Morning” to your coworkers
    • Hold the door open for someone
    • Send a nice email to a colleague
    • Smile and appreciate another
    • Help someone with their garden
    • Share an uplifting story
    • Plant a tree in honor of someone special

Use this Mindfulness Activity to Re-energize your Body and Mind whenever you need a moment to reset – while waiting, before, after, or to transition between activities:

    • Straighten your spine. Roll your shoulders back and down, smile to yourself, & relax your jaw.
    • Take slow deep belly breaths, allowing your stomach to rise with each breath in and relax with each breath out. You may find that each breath gets better and better. Allow your shoulders to relax on each exhale.
    • Listen to your breath as you continue to breathe deeply. Allow yourself to pause your activity and just listen and feel your breath moving in and out of your body.

Recharge yourself and share positive energy when you repeat:  

“I am [*Name*]. I can do this. As I connect to my inner self, I am open to the Happiness and positive energy around me. I send loving kindness and compassion to all people including me. Together, we can do great things.”

With gratitude and appreciation for all beings,

Naomi Parrella, MD & Fran Lee, FNP 

Wednesday, May 25

Today is Wednesday, May 25, 2022. Riding on wheels during the week- feels great to be moving forward.

A quote by Herbie Hancock, “Music is the tool to express life, and all that makes a difference.”

Photo by Bastien Plu

Continuing a Magical May!  This month, we explore things that can make us HAPPY.  Being happy can enhance your life, boost the immune system, and help build connections with others. Music can elicit happiness and soothe the brain.

    • Create playlists that elicit certain moods and feelings. Upbeat and activating. Relaxing and calming. Cheerful and associated with happy memories.
    • Play an instrument. Return to an instrument you know how to play. Learn a new instrument by taking lessons online or in in person class and make new friends.
    • Sing in a choir or to your favorite music in the shower, with a karaoke machine or even in the car.
    • Serenade a loved one or sing a lullaby to a child.
    • Listen to musicians performing for an audience.
    • Enjoy your favorite music while immersing yourself in the garden or park.

Use this Mindfulness Activity to Re-energize your Body and Mind whenever you need a moment to reset – while waiting, before, after, or to transition between activities:

    • Straighten your spine. Roll your shoulders back and down, smile to yourself, & relax your jaw.
    • Take slow deep belly breaths, allowing your stomach to rise with each breath in and relax with each breath out. You may find that each breath gets better and better. Allow your shoulders to relax on each exhale.
    • Breathe in fresh air, allow the energy to flow throughout the body.
    • Exhale the unnecessary, feel the body reset.
    • Repeat several more times and smile to yourself.

Recharge yourself and share positive energy when you repeat:  

“I am [*Name*]. I can do this. As I connect to my inner self, I am open to the Happiness and positive energy around me. I send loving kindness and compassion to all people including me. Together, we can do great things.”

With gratitude and appreciation for all beings,

Naomi Parrella, MD & Fran Lee, FNP 

Friday, May 13

Today is Friday, May 13, 2022.  Wondering how can I be helpful today?

A quote by:  Helen Keller. “The unselfish effort to bring cheer to others will be the beginning of a happier life for ourselves.” 

Photo taken by: Fran Lee

Continuing a Magical May!  This month, we explore things that can make us HAPPY, even for a brief moment.  Being happy can enhance your life, boost the immune system, and help build connections with others.  Volunteering offers us an opportunity to connect with others and it is naturally rewarding.

    • Volunteer or donate to your favorite charity
    • Contribute at a food shelter
    • Help out at an animal shelter
    • Do the grocery shopping for an elderly neighbor
    • Cut your neighbor’s lawn

Use this Mindfulness Activity to Re-energize your Body and Mind whenever you need a moment to reset – while waiting, before, after, or to transition between activities:

    • Straighten your spine. Roll your shoulders back and down, smile to yourself, & relax your jaw.
    • Take slow deep belly breaths, allowing your stomach to rise with each breath in and relax with each breath out. You may find that each breath gets better and better. Allow your shoulders to relax on each exhale.
    • Explore alternate nostril breathing, starting by exhaling completely.
    • Alternating from one side to the other, close one nostril with your thumb to breathe in and then repeat with the other nostril to breathe out.
    • Breathe in Left nostril, breathe out Right nostril. Breathe in Right nostril, breathe out Left nostril.
    • Continue this sequence for several more cycles.
    • Smile at completing this self-care activity.

Recharge yourself and share positive energy when you repeat:  

“I am [*Name*]. I can do this. As I connect to my inner self, I am open to the Happiness and positive energy around me. I send loving kindness and compassion to all people including me. Together, we can do great things.”

With gratitude and appreciation for all beings,

Naomi Parrella, MD & Fran Lee, FNP 

Wednesday, May 11

Today is Wednesday May 11, 2022.  Feeling the breeze cooling me from the warming sun.

A quote by: Atul Gawande “I said there are at least two kinds of satisfaction, however, and the other comes from human connection.  It comes from making others happy, understanding them, loving them.”

Photo taken by: Erin Donalson

We continue this Magical May!  This month, we explore things that can make us HAPPY, even for a brief moment.  Being happy can enhance your life, boost the immune system, and help build connections with others.  Spending time with family or friends, strengthens connections which has been shown to promote happiness.

    • Have a regular family game night
    • Eat dinner together
    • Go for a family walk after dinner
    • Reach out to a friend you have not talked to in a while
    • Have a picnic
    • Host a family reunion

Use this Mindfulness Activity to Re-energize your Body and Mind whenever you need a moment to reset – while waiting, before, after, or to transition between activities:

    • Straighten your spine. Roll your shoulders back and down, smile to yourself, & relax your jaw.
    • Take slow deep belly breaths, allowing your stomach to rise with each breath in and relax with each breath out. You may find that each breath gets better and better. Allow your shoulders to relax on each exhale.
    • Explore alternate nostril breathing, starting by exhaling completely.
    • Alternating from one side to the other, close one nostril with your thumb to breathe in and then repeat with the other nostril to breathe out.
    • Breathe in Left nostril, breathe out Right nostril. Breathe in Right nostril, breathe out Left nostril.
    • Continue this sequence for several more cycles.
    • Smile at completing this self-care activity.

Recharge yourself and share positive energy when you repeat:  

“I am [*Name*]. I can do this. As I connect to my inner self, I am open to the Happiness and positive energy around me. I send loving kindness and compassion to all people including me. Together, we can do great things.”

With gratitude and appreciation for all beings,

Naomi Parrella, MD & Fran Lee, FNP 

Monday, May 9

Today is Monday May 9, 2022.  Appreciating the pleasant aromas flowers provide.

A quote by Lady Bird Johnson.  “Where flowers bloom so does hope.”

Photo taken by: Fran Lee

We continue this Magical May!  This month, we explore things that can make us HAPPY, even for a brief moment.  Being happy can enhance your life, boost the immune system, and help build connections with others.  Research has shown flowers make you happier. 😊

    • Pick some flowers from your garden to enjoy them inside
    • Send flowers to someone you care about
    • Visit your favorite park that has beautiful flower gardens
    • Peruse your favorite garden center
    • Engage your senses at a botanical conservatory

Use this Mindfulness Activity to Re-energize your Body and Mind whenever you need a moment to reset – while waiting, before, after, or to transition between activities:

    • Straighten your spine. Roll your shoulders back and down, smile to yourself, & relax your jaw.
    • Take slow deep belly breaths, allowing your stomach to rise with each breath in and relax with each breath out. You may find that each breath gets better and better. Allow your shoulders to relax on each exhale.
    • Explore alternate nostril breathing, starting by exhaling completely.
    • Alternating from one side to the other, close one nostril with your thumb to breathe in and then repeat with the other nostril to breathe out.
    • Breathe in Left nostril, breathe out Right nostril. Breathe in Right nostril, breathe out Left nostril.
    • Continue this sequence for several more cycles.
    • Smile at completing this self-care activity.

Recharge yourself and share positive energy when you repeat:  

“I am [*Name*]. I can do this. As I connect to my inner self, I am open to the Happiness and positive energy around me. I send loving kindness and compassion to all people including me. Together, we can do great things.”

With gratitude and appreciation for all beings,

Naomi Parrella, MD & Fran Lee, FNP