Friday, September 16, 2016

Unique Ways Colors are Key to Survival

The color of each plant, mammal, bird, fish, reptile, insect, and amphibian that is alive today is the result of its evolutionary process. Color helps living things fit into their natural surroundings, whether it’s into the wild of the jungle, plains, mountains, woods, desert, or sea.

In natural habitats, living things take advantage of their color and colored patterns in different ways. In mating season, the male robin (bird) has bright red breast feathers to attract a mate. The male puffin (another bird) displays bright rings on his beak only during mating season. They fade away the rest of the year. Flounder (a type of fish) has scales to blend in with its surroundings and ward of predators both from below and above. Here’s a link That Provides Details About Fish Camouflage.

Many species of chameleons have skin that can change color and blend into its environment. Some wildlife has skin with spots or stripes, and it's used as disruptive colorization. This means animals including zebras have stripes in colors that disrupt the outline of its shape, and this pattern helps confuse its predators. An eastern screech owl, who is almost a perfect color match to the bark of trees it hangs out on, can sleep restfully undisturbed, while those animals that hunt for him can’t locate him.


Vivid colors in the animal kingdom can have the reverse effect. They help animals stand out from the crowd. Some animals that display bright colors show they are poisonous. At the same time, there are animals that use warning colors for mimicry. Since the color is similar to one used by a dangerous animal it offers protection to the harmless animal. Sometimes distinct colors act as a warning sign to other animals and people not to trespass. For instance, most of us know when we notice a small black creature scurrying nearby, to check out whether the animal has a white stripe running down its back. We may even have learned the hard way to keep a safe distance from that black and white skunk. 

Thursday, September 1, 2016

How to Use Blue and Throat Chakra Energy to Eliminate Pain


Chakra is a Sanskrit word that literally translates to wheel or disk. In yoga and meditation, chakra refers to wheels of energy or energy moving within and around the body. You may have seen illustrations of the seven main chakras like the one above. It shows the chakras stacked one on top of the other from the root chakra at the bottom to the crown chakra on top. The labels on the left are Sanskrit names. The corresponding body location, as it aligns with the spine, is to the right. This picture is a one dimensional representation, but chakras aren’t just related to the physical body. They represent energy in our etheric body.

Etheric energy is chi, life force, prana/breath, and those names given by people around the world, including ones used since the beginning of time.

Etheric energy is around us and in us. It enlivens and nourishes physical matter and is in all space in the universe.

A modern physics term to describe it is a wave-and-particle type of energy. I think of it as a range of frequencies of energy.

This power can be felt and seen by some, and with raised awareness, you can experience more of it too. Etheric energy is comprised of vibrations that sustain life in all beings and in all physical matter in the physical world. It must be present or life ceases to exist.

Visualize a chakra by imagining a swirling wheel of energy , a space where matter and consciousness meet. When it is balanced, chakra energy keeps us animated, healthy, and alive.

Obstacles we imagine in our physical, mental, emotional, spiritual, or energetic body, will cause us pain and may lead to dis-ease and even illness. That’s why I wanted to pay attention to my fifth chakra, the vishudda chakra (includes throat, neck, thyroid, parathyroid, jaw, mouth, tongue, and larynx). Last week, for two agonizing days, I had a “pain in the neck."

This does not turn out to be a sad tale. I had the foresight to summon my throat chakra energy, and take tender loving care of myself while my body had a chance to relax, ground itself, and correct imbalances. I made health my priority. I devoted the time and patience it takes to create an atmosphere for self-healing. 

In the past, energy cleansing has been a natural result of allowing my attention to rest in Pure Awareness/Presence. Whenever I have been able to transform my reference point from the "me" that is made up of ego, thoughts, feelings, or past experiences, and connect with my spirit, I'm able to gradually release whatever burdens I have been carrying around.

That's why I suggest you welcome and breathe into your feelings. Accept your current circumstances. Take off your shoes, hug a tree, or stamp your foot to establish a sense of being more rooted and stable. 

Try this on for size. Think of Essence as Mother Earth. This center is the stillness between thoughts. In moments of non-thinking and non-doing we experience now.




My process was eventful in an internal sort of way. Here are additional things that helped me heal.

The color that corresponds to the fifth chakra is blue/turquoise. Blue gems that are useful in helping to clear the throat and neck area are sapphire, blue topaz, lapis lazuli, aquamarine, and turquoise. My intuition told me that turquoise was the right gem to imagine. 

Then I went to my journal, and my inner knowing guided me to jot down ideas about how this stone and its blue/green energy could help me visualize a good outcome for my situation. I spelled out what it would look like in detail. Then, I sat comfortably in a chair, closed my eyes, and continued to travel inward for answers.

I imagined I could communicate with turquoise and invite it to go to my neck, throat, and heart. All were calling this lovely stone to teach me what I needed to know. I pictured beautiful pieces of turquoise floating to my body, and suddenly remembered I have a necklace made of this southwestern stone. I quickly put in on. 

I discovered that wearing my necklace was comforting. It felt cool on my skin. Any time during the day when my mind became over-active or stressed, I breathed deeply and imagined the stones being able to bypass the chatter in my head. Then I envisioned an arc of blue green light going to that part of me that needed support and peace. 

Turquoise energy from these stones helped me heal. See more about health at www.colors4health.com

Another technique that worked to calm my mind and warm my body was a deep breathing exercise. Here it is in detail. Yoga Journal Article Explains How to Do Ujjayi Breathing.

Then I tried my hand at singing and chanting and intoned, “Pain, pain, go away. I let go of expectations of how I want someone else to behave.”

Sharing my thoughts, doubts, fears, anger, and judgments by talking with trusted people, helped me look at myself and my part in the scenario. After I shared about the situation and self-validated that I was entitled to my feelings, I was able to create and recite powerful affirmations to change my attitude about what really happened.

I am clear and direct as I ask for support from available people.

I recognize support in the form that it appears.

All my needs are met today as I live in grace.

Glad to report that each time I said these affirmations aloud I felt  more self-contained and relaxed. In addition, I applied a homeopathic salve to the skin on my neck and throat areas WebMD Information About Arnica Montana, and used light neck massage too.

In two days my pain was gone. However, I gained several insights from my experience. I'd like to share two special ones with you. 

The first is how closely the mind affects the body and vice versa. 

The second is “It's key to check in with myself often, and resist listening to or believing what someone else says about me, when what they are saying is not true. My happiness and well-being depends on that!

Before you go, please give me feedback on any of these things...

What new things did you learn about the chakras? Please explain.

Are you aware of the mind body connection in your life? How does it show itself to you?

Do you find it hard or easy to express your need for emotional support to others? Why do you think this is so?

My experience helped me remember that the only one I truly need approval from is myself.

Do you know how to listen to yourself with a kind ear? Take it from me, this is a major element for self-healing.

Do you have any tips for self-healing that you'd like to share? Please do.

I so appreciate your visit. Please post your comments in the space provided below and then click publish.
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Sunday, August 21, 2016

Use Energy from Green to Refresh You and Your Home

Today I’ll share tips and ideas to demonstrate how the color Green and its corresponding Feng Shui Element/Wood helps rejuvenate your living space and you.




A recent study conducted in the Netherlands and reported in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health revealed that people who lived close to green space had lower rates of anxiety, depression, and poor physical health than those who lived in the concrete jungle. 

Keep in mind that no matter where you live, by using your imagination and ingenuity, you can feel like you're filled with the green energy of a meadow or a trip into the country. Read on and discover how simple and economical it is to satisfy your need for green.


Certain shades of green have psychological impact on the mind as they stimulate energy for improved health and well-being. Think of bright Kelly green. Does it remind you of St. Patrick’s Day or something else? What about dark or forest green? Does that hue make you feel reassured and grounded?

There are neat ways to tap into green energy to refresh your home's décor, and enliven body, mind, and spirit. Greens color your world and may be as close as your plant stand or garden. Start by making a  study of each individual petal of a jade or other house plant. If you prefer, glance out your window at an evergreen or green shrub, green vegetable, or tree (wood and green) and study it closely. Observe how many shades of green you can find. If you see no green anywhere, take in the greens from pictures like the one right below.




 Try this green mindfulness technique to quiet your mind and absorb potent green energy. It's fun to playfully visualize how green can color your body. Sit, lie down, or stand in a relaxed pose as you say: I allow the harmonizing, relaxing energies of green plants and vegetation to invigorate me or to travel to that place in my body that needs nourishment. I breathe in refreshing green colors and breathe out stress. I breathe in seeds for change and breathe out outmoded behavior. I breathe in joy and release dis-ease.  I breathe in love and release fear. Then, say aloud... Green energies are always there for me. I enjoy using green in my daily living, because it helps me breathe deeply, come fully back into myself , and grow and thrive.


Another idea that helps to increase the amount of green in your life, is to transform stuff that's on hand in new ways. Place one of your house plants alongside your computer or tablet. Set the monitor screen to green. This trick works. Green plants and green screens help you work at your electronic devices with less eye strain. Plan to write with a green marker in your journal or when writing a to-do list. Green reminds you to go with the green flow and do one thing at a time.

Notice if your mood improves, as you increase the amount of green household items in your home. This color can establish or maintain a pathway for renewal, expansion, and flexibility. 

Display green towels or wooden items like a bamboo soap dish or towel stand in your bathroom to restore energy. Adding wood in the bathroom, boosts your sense of grounding, especially if it runs vertically (up and down). Both green and wood promotes willingness to take good care of yourself. Awaken your senses with a relaxing soak in your tub, scented with pure essential eucalyptus oil. This tree sourced oil soothes tense muscles and clears your mind, as it washes your cares down the drain. It's no wonder many spas use green and wooden items in their decorating schemes. 




Reserve a spot on the wall for a photo or painting of a green landscape. Cleanse and "green" the air by placing a Boston fern in your bedroom or other room. Use a green rug in the mud room and in those places where you want to encourage positive energy  to enter your home. 

Find a green hued paint that appeals to you. Pick up a paint brush, and paint your home office. Green is a good color to gaze at or imagine, when you feel anxious, stressed, or worry about money coming in. When you include green in your decorating plan, it helps money circulate for you.

Research indicates that of all the greens, spring green is most accepted and appreciated by both sexes. It broadcasts new growth, balance, good health, and abundance. 


"Introduce touches of green into your living space to enliven, balance, and increase abundance in your life. "
Nancy Andres

Now that I've shown you how to renew your living space with green, I'm making a special request. Please take a moment to order a copy of my colorful self-care journal, Colors of Joy: A Woman's Guide for Self-Discovery, Balance, and Bliss.

Colors of Joy is a 12 week journal program that uses color energy activities to help women explore relationship issues, nourish secret longings, and discover how to live more joyfully. 







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Monday, August 1, 2016

Why We Need to Eat Orange Fruits and Veggies Daily






These butterflies remind me of how vibrant and eye-catching the color orange is. When orange appears in the orange/yellow pigment of vegetables and fruits like carrots, cantaloupe, and tangerines, it means that produce item is loaded with beta-carotene (retinol), a precursor of vitamin A. Beta-carotene in itself isn't an essential nutrient, but vitamin A is. The human body is designed to covert the beta carotene in acorn squash, oranges, sweet potatoes, and other orange/yellow produce into vitamin A. 


Vitamin A keeps skin healthy, and supports our immune system. Vitamin A is important for good eye health and vision. Substances in orange pigmented fruits and vegetables also work with calcium and magnesium to maintain bone and joint health. Look below. I've detailed three examples of orange-colored produce and important ways each can improve your health and well-being. 



Eat Orange Veggies and Fruits Daily


Cantaloupe is an excellent source of both vitamin C and vitamin A (in the form of carotenoids). It’s a good source of potassium and a host of B vitamins (B1, B3, B6, and folate) as well as vitamin K, magnesium, and fiber. If you eat the seeds of the cantaloupe, they provide omega-3 fat in the form of alpha-linolenic acid. Cantaloupe has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties as well. Many heart-related problems start out with chronic unwanted inflammation and chronic oxidative stress. 


Carrots are an excellent source of beta-carotene. A large study conducted in the Netherlands and reported in the British Journal of Nutrition shows that people who eat at least 25 grams or more of carrots daily (with 25 grams being less than one-quarter of a cup), had significantly lower risk of Coronary Heart Disease (CHD). In the group of participants who ate 50 to 75-grams or more a day, people greatly reduced their risk of CHD. 


Tangerines, also known as mandarin oranges, are a citrus fruit with many nutritious elements, including flavonoids, vitamin C, vitamin A, folate, and potassium. These components contribute to well-being by helping to stabilize cell DNA in your skin (anti-Cancer), to strengthening bones, safeguarding eyesight, and protecting your heart. Tangerines pack even more vitamin A and iron than oranges, although they contain slightly less vitamin C. 


       See This Delicious List of Orange and Yellow Fruits and Veggies

Carrots
Tangerines
Oranges
Clementines
Mandarin Oranges
Kumquats
Mangoes
Papayas
Peaches
Nectarines
Yellow Peppers
Yellow Onions
Yellow Potatoes
Pumpkin
Grapefruit
Acorn Squash, Butternut Squash, Yellow Summer Squash
Sweet Potatoes and Yams

Please comment below. Share which orange veggies and fruits you enjoy. 

Do you include at least 2 portions of 2 different kinds of orange or yellow fruits and veggies a day in the food you eat? 

What helps you remember to eat colorful orange and yellow fruits and veggies every day? 

Did you learn something new from my blog? Does it validate and reinforce things that you already have in place in your healthy lifestyle and how or why? 

When I read your feedback it helps me, so I encourage you to share. Before it's time to plan new blog posts, I think about your comments. I aim to use that information to create new posts that will appeal to and help you.


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Saturday, July 16, 2016

Colors of Joy Among Top 10 Self-Help Books for Women




I am a reflective person, and continually work on myself to evolve and grow. Over the years, many life skills outlined in self-help books resonated with me and I've been able to integrate them into my life. The books I mention below are at the top of my list of 50 great self-enrichment guides, and were written by authors I admire. Their writing has helped me change my life, because each shifted my attitude or perspective, and encouraged self-awareness. Self-care concepts I discuss in my book and those I learned from others enabled me and millions of others to practice taking better care of meeting our own needs as well as improving our ability to feel compassion for ourselves and others. That's why I recommend each book on this list highly.

Nancy Andres' Top 10 Self-Help Books for Women by Women

1. The Language of Letting Go by Melody Beattie
2. You Can Heal Your Life by Louise Hay
3. Women's Bodies, Women's Wisdom by Christiane Northrup MD
4. Colors of Joy: A Woman's Guide for Self-Discovery, Balance, and Bliss by Nancy Andres
5. The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron
6. Writing Down the Bones by Natalie Goldberg
7. The Gifts of Imperfection and Daring Greatly by Brené Brown
8. Quiet by Susan Cain
9. One Day My Soul Just Opened Up by Iyanla Vanzant
10. The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin

All inspired me in some way. Some shed light on my misconceptions. Others helped me re-program my thinking by providing methods that worked to help me stop listening to that "old internal message" that shouted I wasn't good enough, or that people pleasing is the only way to win approval and attention. Others helped me bolster my self-esteem as I learned through example, to speak up for myself. Or if appropriate, to be still, when that was the best response.  

I placed Colors of Joy on my all-time favorite self-development list, because it works. 

It fulfills a long held dream of mine to help women prosper and grow. This interactive journal can make a positive change in you. 

In it, I share insights I've gained from over 21 years of research and investigation of color energy, as well as offer ideas and tips I've developed on the job as a health and lifestyle writer (19+ years) and wellness blogger (7 years), and in my personal life as a woman, wife, mother, friend, sister, journal devotee, and world citizen. 

As an added feature, Kay Lesh, PhD, a family counsellor and educator, has written a section about the psychological aspects of colors, affirmations, and journal writing. 

Colors of Joy is designed to dispel negative energy by showing the journal owner how to write and recite affirmations like “I cherish and respect myself just as I am." 

It also offers stress reduction tips to nurture the journal owner, help her be more mindful of her choices, and avail herself of the support and encouragement the book provides. 

Pick up a copy and let Colors of Joy guide you as its color-coded journal activities stimulates your intuition and higher wisdom through your senses, transforms fear to love, dread to hope, boredom to fun, confusion to clarity, and drabness to living color.

Enjoy Colors of Joy at your own pace, and observe how guided journal activities, color visualizations, 12 full page color-inserts, affirmations, and reflective exercises heal you, support you, and enhance daily living.

Create a sense of contentment and joy in your life, and remember to buy Colors of Joy now! 





Here's a sample of things women have discovered about Colors of Joy




Nancy Adams Rodman wrote: Who would have thought that colors could be so healing? Don’t just read the book, but journal your way through and learn more about yourself than you could have imagined. This book offers a unique self exploratory experience. I always knew that walking outdoors was a great stress reliever for me. What I learned is that it is also the uninterrupted blue sky that I feel envelops me and is more than just calming, it’s healing. When I “see red” I can temper that feeling by picturing that color as it fades slowly into a soft pink which for me is a healing through love. You will gain your own insights by working through “Colors”. Nothing heavy duty here just a gentle dawning that will comfort you and make you smile.

Sheila Bustamante wrote: Colors of Joy: A Woman's Guide For Self-Discovery, Balance, and Bliss by Nancy Andres is filled with bright, purposeful exercises to take you on a journey to find yourself. The colorful chapter covers and their themes set the stage as you ponder the questions, live the actions or simply write what’s on your mind. Journaling is a powerful tool to help you explore your thoughts or actions and then reflect further upon them. Anyone can find a little something to relate to in this book for a joyful experience.

Robin Peel wrote: Author Nancy Andres reminds me to relax and appreciate the effect color has on my mood and emotions. The affirmations guide my thoughts and reflections about who I am, and who I am becoming. I especially recommend this book for women who want to expand their self-awareness and explore the richness of their inner lives.

Minka from Tucson AZ wrote: Beautifully colored and thoughtfully written. The book is full of wonderful suggestions. Gentle ideas to help us reflect and explore our feelings. It is great light and easy to approach. I love it and use it to add richness and meaning to my everyday life. I bought this book for 2 of my dear friends.

To see more reviews go to Colors of Joy Book Review Page on Amazon


Minka with her Copy of Colors of Joy


If you already have a copy of Colors of Joy or have given it as a gift, please write a review and post it on Amazon, Goodreads, and in the comments section below. I appreciate it greatly! Please know if you have questions or comments about this post, I welcome them too.


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Friday, July 1, 2016

4 Key Reasons to Eat a Variety of Colorful Fruits and Veggies Each Day


For optimum health, top nutrition minds advise us to eat a variety of at least 5 to 9 servings of color-rich vegetables, legumes, beans, nuts, seeds, and fruit a day. Brightly colored low-fat plant-based whole foods aren't just visually appealing. They are nature's way of highlighting a broad range of nutrients that are key to good health. In its original state, each vegetable or fruit is low in saturated fat, pleasing to the palette, fills us up, but doesn’t make us feel overstuffed. 

Here are 4 Key Reasons to  Eat a Variety of Colorful  Fruits and Veggies Each Day


1. Prevents or Reduces the Severity of Disease. When we consume ample amounts of a combination of cooked (lightly steamed or baked without oil) and uncooked color rich produce daily, research shows that our food choices put us on a healthy track toward preventing heart disease, some types of cancer, osteoporosis, high blood pressure, obesity, diabetes, stroke and birth defects. Educate yourself about each ingredient you want to eat. For example, determine if it’s more healthful to eat broccoli raw or cooked from Dr. Michael Greger’s Nutrition Facts blog at http://nutritionfacts.org/. See the latest research and video links about a wealth of additional vegetables, fruits, whole grains, legumes, and nuts and seeds there too. Also check out the Aggregate Nutrient Density Index (ANDI), a scoring system that rates foods on a scale from 1 to 1000 based on nutrient content. ANDI scores are calculated by evaluating an extensive range of micronutrients, including vitamins, minerals, phytochemicals and antioxidant capacities. Healthy Eating and the ANDI Index.

Happy Woman Who Eats Many Colorful Vegetables and Fruits Each Day!

2. Improves Our Mood and Sense of Well-being. A recent study, conducted by Bonnie Beezhold of the University of Arizona and Carol S. Johnston, published February 14, 2012 in Nutrition Journal indicates that "Restricting meat, fish, and poultry improved some domains of short-term mood state in modern omnivores. To our knowledge, this is the first trial to examine the impact of restricting meat, fish, and poultry on mood state in omnivores." It's interesting to note that the study showed that several mood scores for VEG participants improved significantly after two weeks. Wouldn't you know it? When we feel good about our self-care we look good and vice versa.


3. Stabilizes Weight by allowing us to feel satisfied after eating a meal, without cravings to load up on excess calories or resort to eating junk foods and processed products that are high salt, high sugar, high fat, and chemically enhanced (and often contribute to weight gain and/or poor health). See this documented guide from Kaiser Permanente for more about a Healthier Way to Eat. 

4. Provides Essential Vitamins, Minerals, Nutrients, Fiber, and Antioxidants that help us function at peak levels. When we eat a wide range of colorful low fat whole plant-based foods daily, we please our taste buds and satisfy hunger as we ingest plant-based protein, complex carbohydrates, water, healthy fat, minerals, vitamins, and nutrients our body needs to maintain health, energy, and even increase longevity. For best results, combine healthy eating with a active lifestyle that includes elements like exercise, relaxation, sound sleep, social connections, and abstention from smoking and alcohol consumption.

To maximize the variety of vitamins, minerals, nutrients, and antioxidants we eat in our food, plan to consume at least two different colored vegetables and fruits with each meal. Shop at a nearby market, health food store, farmer's market, or pick veggies and fruits fresh from your garden. Select only those that are in-season, unprocessed whole plant-based foods to get the most bang for your buck. They are less expensive and haven't traveled long distances to get to the market and your table. Don't eat the same ones every day, as you need to vary your selection to cover all your nutritional bases. I've listed many of the tastiest ones, and truth be told, those that I love a lot.

RED tomatoes, raspberries, strawberries, beets, red grapes, red pepper, watermelon, cherries, red kidney beans, red apples

BLUE/PURPLE blueberries, blackberries, black olives, purple figs, plums, black beans, red cabbage (purple), eggplant

YELLOW/ORANGE summer and winter squash, carrots, sweet potatoes, apricots, cantaloupe, lemon, grapefruit, oranges

GREEN spinach, Brussels sprouts, bok choy, collards, chard, kale, broccoli, lentils, kiwi, dark leafy salad greens, avocado, parsley

WHITE/GREEN onions, garlic, pears, celery, endive, asparagus, leeks, mushrooms, cauliflower, quinoa


Eat at least two portions of a combination of red, orange, yellow, green, purple/blue, and white fruits or vegetables at each meal. This eating style provides plentiful fiber, protein, complex carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants for total wellness. Look at the fruit and veggie grid below for more ideas.


Do you have any tips for eating more fruits and veggies? What are your go-to veggies and fruits? Are you willing to try new ones to up your health quotient as well as make your mouth water? Please comment below. Share with others, if you like what you see. Get social with me. Join my tribe by sending an email request to go on my mailing list by clicking here... email me. That way, you'll be one of the first to see my new blog posts. Also, get special offers available only to those who sign up.

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