The BIG Lie That Keeps You From Feeling Like the Boss In Your Life – And How to Get Past It

When I first started my business I was thrilled to have the freedom to work whenever I wanted. Yet there was a downside to that. I found myself working all the time because there was so much to do I felt like I couldn’t fit it all in.

On top of that, I hadn’t developed strong boundaries around my time so I felt pulled in a million different directions by my family, friends and clients.

After a long week, one particular tear-filled conversation with my partner gave me the perspective I needed to see how I’d been holding myself back. It was the same Big Lie that I see so many ambitious professionals telling themselves, which is why they’re staying stuck.

I was exhausted and I felt like no matter how much of myself I gave to my work or the people around me, it was never enough.

It was to the point where I started resenting my work, and my family and friends because so much of my time was going to them, I barely had any time for myself.

Then my partner looked at me and said something that would completely change my perspective. He said “maybe if you made more time for yourself you’d stop feeling so resentful of other people.”

Looking back now, I’m glad I reached that breaking point because a lot of powerful realizations came out of it. I was able to really understand what my clients were feeling.

Over the years I’ve watched hundreds of women put themselves last on their priority list only to wake up years later and wonder why they’re so exhausted and unhappy with their bodies.

So if you’re reading this and thinking “yup, Selina I do the same thing and I just don’t know how to stop” you’re in the right place.

Here’s the thing, as long as you keep thinking you need to be the one to do everything and look after everyone, you’re going to stay overwhelmed and exhausted. The demands on you and your time will continue to run your life.

But that’s where you’ve got it wrong. The big lie that keeps you from feeling like the boss in your life is the idea that you have to do everything yourself.

Here’s something to think about… what if instead of saying yes to everything that’s asked of you, and being the one to solve all the problems and do all the things, what if you stopped to really think about what needs to be done by you and separate that from what you could leave to someone else?

I know it’s hard to release control, it was a process for me too. But once I understood that I didn’t have to control everything around me, that I could delegate, say no, and even (this was the real scary one for me) ask for help—  that’s when things started to feel better. I was able to set better boundaries and make my self-care a priority on a regular basis instead of waiting for a health crisis to force me to slow down.

If you want to talk more about how you can get rid of overwhelm and start feeling more like the Boss in your life, book a breakthrough call with me. I’d love to talk more with you.

In my 90 Days to CALM Program we talk all about taking control of your time, your energy and prioritizing self-care so you can go from stressed out and overwhelmed to calm, focused and productive. Book a call with me if you want to know more.

It’s time to let go of the Big Lie that’s keeping you burnt out an exhausted and level up to become the Boss in your life.

How to Be Consistent with Your Health Habits

For the longest time, I felt extremely frustrated with myself and actually a bit ashamed that I couldn’t seem to keep up any sort of consistency with basic things like prepping healthy meals, getting to bed on time and exercising regularly.

I would set a start date and decide to focus but something would come up like a social event, or a project, and I’d put my commitment to myself on the back burner because whatever it was felt more important. Does this sound familiar?

If you’re looking to build consistency with your health habits but so far all you’ve been doing is setting goals and then having a bunch of stops and starts, I’m going to show you how you can get past that so you can see results from your efforts and actually have more energy to do the things you love.

Here’s something to think about…what if, instead of starting by setting big action goals for yourself, you started out by taking a step back to set an intention, plan and get control of your nervous system which is what allows you to be calm and focused?

It starts with your morning routine.

You might be thinking – Selina I want to go to yoga after work, what does this have to do with my morning?

Here’s why this works… when you have a morning routine that allows you to get organized and set intentions for your day you’ve taken time that day to prioritize and presence yourself to your goal.

Your morning routine allows you to:

  • Build time into your morning routine to get prepared with things you’ll need to act toward your goal (e.g.: bringing your workout clothes with you to work).
  • Foresee any obstacles to you taking your desired action and plan ahead or ask for support if necessary.
  • Set an intention for the actions you want to take for the day and your desired outcomes
  • Connect with why taking those actions are important so you can be focused and motivated by what drives you in the moment.

Taking action toward your goal actually begins way before it’s time to do the specific thing. When you start your day with a morning routine that gets you centered and focused you can be prepared to take the actions you want to take for the day.

This made a huge difference for me and my clients have put this into action and reaped the benefits as well. Consistency increases when you’re prepared and ready for the day.

Food Colours & Dye: Are they safe? Should you avoid them?

It’s the time of year where busy parents get even busier- back to school. Suddenly there’s a push to buy (in bulk) kids’ treats and foods that will make school lunches easier.

Pay attention though to the ingredients in your children’s snacks. Food colours and dyes are one thing in particular to pay attention to since children can be most sensitive to these (adults too!).

At the end of the day, if you’re buying convenience snacks for your kids’ to save yourself time in the kitchen but they have the potential for negative health effects, are you really coming out ahead?

Remember that whole foods like fruit, seeds, cut up vegetables, even whole grain crackers will win out nutritionally over anything that’s processed and dyed.

Despite the growing trend of healthier and safer food products being introduced into the marketplace, you might be surprised to learn that the consumption of artificial food colours, has been increasing over the years, especially among packaged products marketed to children.

Food colours and dyes have been around since the mid-1800’s and were originally created from coal tar – today, they are typically made from petroleum. (yum!)

Many food manufacturers choose to use artificial dyes vs. natural ones because they create more radiant hues, whereas natural food colours tend to create more of a pastel look.

Artificial food colours are used by food manufacturers in a variety of products, including candy, maraschino cherries, cereal, baked goods, sports drinks, pickles (yes, pickles!), smoked salmon (think pink), and even medications.

The safety of artificial food colours has been very controversial among consumers for some time now, despite several regulatory agencies stating that artificial food colours do not pose significant health risks and are therefore safe to use.

One reason behind the controversy, which has resulted in conflicting opinions regarding their safety, is that some countries have deemed artificial food colours to be safe while some countries have banned them from human consumption.

There have been claims that artificial food colours cause serious side effects in some people, including cancer, allergies, and hyperactivity in children. [1, 2, 3, 4]

The following colours are approved by the FDA for use in food:

  • Blue No. 1 (Brilliant Blue): Found in ice cream, canned peas, soup packets, icing, dairy products, ice pops, and beverages.
  • Blue No. 2 (Indigo Carmine): Found in candy, ice cream, cereal and snacks.
  • Green No. 3 (Fast Green): Found in canned peas and other vegetables, jellies, sauces, desserts, salad dressings, cereal, pre-cooked pasta, and dry bakery mixes. This food dye is banned in Europe.
  • Orange B: Found in the casings and surfaces of hot dogs and sausages.
  • Citrus Red No. 2: Found in the skins of oranges that are intended to be eaten (not when an orange is intended or used for processing).
  • Red No. 3 (Erythrosine): Found in candy, popsicles, cake-decorating gels, and pistachio gels.
  • Red No. 40 (Allura Red): Found in soft drinks, sports drinks, cotton candy, cereals, and condiments.
  • Yellow No. 5 (Tartrazine): Found in lemon filling in baked goods, cereal, rice, noodles, cotton candy, instant pudding and gelatin, cake mixes, soft drinks, energy drinks, powdered drink mixes, corn chips and potato chips, chewing gum, and popcorn.
  • Yellow No. 6 (Sunset Yellow): Found in cereal, dry mixes and seasonings, baked goods, sausage, meat, and snack foods. Used with amaranth to produce a brown color in chocolate and caramel.

One important thing to note about the foods listed here is that very few of them are whole foods. You can avoid food dyes altogether by sticking to the perimeter of the grocery store and purchasing real, whole foods.

Wondering if the food products you consume contain artificial food colouring?

Read the ingredient labels on the packaging – any artificial food colouring that has been added is required to be listed on food packaging.

Keep in mind that there is no nutritional benefit to using artificial food colouring - not even if it makes it “look” healthier because it looks more fruity!

Should you avoid food colouring and food dyes?

On the whole, food dyes are likely not dangerous for most people, but some are more sensitive to them than others - and some children should be especially mindful of their consumption.

Taking steps to avoid processed foods that contain dyes is a good idea for most everyone, and can improve your overall health.

If you are concerned about the safety and health implications of using artificial food colouring, you can easily make your own natural food dyes using fruits and vegetables, right in your own kitchen! Use these for birthday cakes, icing, dying eggshells and more.

RECIPE(S)

Pink Food Coloring

  • 1/4 cup (62 grams) canned beets (drained)
  • 1 teaspoon drained beet juice (from the canned beets)

In a blender or food processor, blend the beets and juice together until smooth. Strain if desired. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

Yellow Food Coloring

  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric

In a small saucepan, boil the water and turmeric together for 3 to 5 minutes. Allow to fully cool. Store in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks in the refrigerator.

Turmeric can stain just about anything it comes into contact with, including countertops, containers, and your skin. Therefore, consider wearing gloves when working with turmeric and use a container that you don’t mind turning yellow.

Purple Food Coloring

  • 1/4 cup (35 grams) blueberries, fresh or frozen (if frozen, thaw and drain)
  • 2 teaspoons water

In a blender or food processor, blend the blueberries and water together until smooth. Using a fine-mesh sieve, strain the skins from the mix. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

Green Food Coloring

  • 3 tablespoons water (additional water may be needed)
  • 1 cup (30 grams) spinach, fresh or frozen (if frozen, thaw and drain)

Fresh spinach: In a small saucepan, boil the spinach in enough water to cover the spinach for 5 minutes. Drain and discard the water. Go to the next step.

Frozen and thawed spinach: Skip to the next step.

In a blender or food processor, blend the spinach and water together until completely smooth. If the mixture clumps together or refuses to blend, add more water as needed, 1 tablespoon at a time. Strain, if desired, and let cool. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

References

Healthline: Food Dyes - Harmless or Harmful?

* Other relevant studies linked in [1, 2, 3, 4]

Are Nutrient Deficiencies Causing Your Health Issues?

You’re living a fast-paced life and it seems like you’re always being pulled frome one thing to the next. Somehow in there you manage to grab a smoothie, some toast, and the occasional sit down meal. But have you ever thought that your sporadic eating habits influence more than whether you feel full or not?

The food you take in is responsible for giving you all the nutrients your body needs to produce new healthy cells, hormones, and repair your tissues. The thing is, many of us aren’t getting enough nutrients, so we’re missing key building blocks that our bodies need.

Nutrient deficiencies can be behind some common health concerns. They can also be at the root of more serious diseases and chronic lifestyle issues. Read below to see if your health concerns can be traced back to nutrient deficiencies.

Many nutrition professionals generally advise that a healthful, balanced diet can provide most people with the nutrients essential for good health.

Fruit and vegetables naturally contain a number of beneficial nutrients, such as vitamins, minerals, fibre, antioxidants and other biologically active components - or phytochemicals.

In fact, it has been documented that consumption of at least 5 servings per day is linked with a reduced risk of various diseases, including several cancers and heart disease.

However, with the overall lack of nutrient bioavailability due to things like:

  • inadequate fruit and vegetable servings
  • soil depletion
  • over-processing of food
  • treated water

It’s no wonder that many of us are indeed lacking in a number of key nutrients that we once came by very easily. We simply aren’t eating our Grandmother’s fruits & veggies anymore!

Do you have any of THESE health issues right now?

(You may be surprised to learn that there may be a connection to certain symptoms with actually having a nutritional deficiency!)

Muscle twitches or leg cramps?

A nutrient that is commonly found in plant foods, but also commonly lacking in our diets due to all of the reasons for poor bioavailability, is magnesium.

This talented mineral is involved as a cofactor for a range of biochemical reactions in the body, is involved in the structural development of bone, and plays a role in nerve impulse conduction, maintaining a normal heart rhythm and muscle contraction.

Helloooo dark chocolate! Yes, dark chocolate is high in magnesium, just like dark leafy green vegetables.

Hormonal issues causing chaos? Maybe your fats aren’t so good.

FYI, while hormonal imbalances are another topic entirely, here are some of the most common signs and symptoms of hormone imbalances:

  • Depression and anxiety
  • Fatigue
  • Insomnia and poor sleep
  • Low libido
  • Infertility and irregular periods
  • Weight loss, weight gain or weight loss resistance
  • Digestive issues
  • Hair loss and hair thinning

Hormonal imbalances are complex, multi-faceted issues, meaning they are caused by a combination of factors such as your diet, medical history, genetics, stress levels and exposure to toxins from your environment.

Again, another topic altogether, but one of the major contributors to hormonal imbalances includes your diet - and specifically a lack of fats. Good fats, that is!

Hormones are built on fat, and your body can only use the building blocks you give it.

Think wild-caught salmon, hemp seeds, coconut oil, avocados, and a special mention of GLA (gamma linoleic acid) found in evening primrose and borage oils - studies have shown that supplementing with GLA can support healthy progesterone levels.

How’s your nail health? Maybe not as good as you think! Here are some signs to watch for:

What's considered ‘normal’ differs in everyone, but generally, fingernails should be clear, smooth, pliable and peachy-pink in colour.

White spots

Ever noticed white spots on your nails?

While this is most often due to mild trauma (like banging your nail against something hard), it can also indicate a zinc deficiency.

Horizontal lines, ridges and spoons

What about horizontal lines or ridges across your nails?

These are sometimes called Beau's lines, and may be due to a zinc deficiency but could be indicative of low iron or anemia. Nails can be spoon-shaped at the tips with iron deficiency as well.

Dry, brittle and peeling

Dry, brittle, thin or peeling nails?

Could just be dry nails, but possibly also…

  • a lack of protein
  • Vitamin D deficiency
  • Deficiency in one or more B vitamins

No half moons?

Ever noticed the lighter-toned half-moons at the base of your fingernail? Or perhaps you haven't noticed them because they're absent all together!

This is usually due to a Vitamin B12 deficiency and is also associated with anemia.

So, how do we get all the nutrients we need, and improve our health?

Even with striving to maintain a healthful, balanced diet, it’s apparent that many of us may not be getting all the nutrients we need for optimal health.

Things that contribute to acquiring nutrient deficiencies:

  • Lack of nutrient bioavailability
  • Poor dietary choices
  • Restricted diets
  • Food sensitivities & intolerances
  • Gastrointestinal disorders
  • Poor nutrient absorption (through the small intestine)
  • Some medications
  • Age

As always, getting your full complement of nutrients is encouraged through whole food sources, but sometimes our diet just isn’t meeting all of our needs and this is where supplementation may be necessary.

RECIPE

For better nutrient bioavailability, there are certain food pairings that increase the uptake and absorption of one or more nutrients = synergistic effect.

For example, pairing sources of Vitamin C with sources of Iron to increase the uptake and absorption of the Iron.

My favourite way to do this is in a fresh, vibrant spinach salad with juicy strawberries!

Spinach-Strawberry Salad with Berry Vinaigrette

Ingredients

8 cups baby spinach leaves (organic preferable)
4 cups strawberries, fresh sliced (organic preferable)
½ red onion, thinly sliced
½ cup walnuts, chopped & toasted (or other fave nut or seed, lightly toasted)

Dairy option: crumbled goat cheese

Dressing - in a small bowl, whisk together the following:

½ avocado or virgin olive oil
¼ cup balsamic (or raspberry-infused wine vinegar for a lighter, less sweet option)
2 Tbsp honey (unpasteurized preferable)
Pinch smoked paprika
Salt & pepper to taste

Salad preparation

In a large bowl, gently toss all salad ingredients.

Pour dressing over top and toss gently to just combine.

If using, sprinkle goat cheese over the top of salad or just on individual plates as it can get “mashed into” the salad very easily.

Spinach does not generally keep very long, and becomes wilted quickly. This salad is best served immediately.

REFERENCES

The Wellness Business Hub: Yes, We Do Have Nutrient Deficiencies!
CanPrev: Nutrient Deficiencies - Why Nearly Everyone Has Them
Scientific American: Have Fruits & Vegetables Become Less Nutritious?
Dr Axe: Balance Hormones Naturally

The Stress Avoidance Cycle

Stress, like the rest of life, happens in cycles.

When problems occur in cycles it makes them much easier to ignore, and harder to catch. Be honest, have you ever known you had to make a decision that would let someone down, so you kept busy to avoid it? It feels convenient when the things that irk you, the ones you know you need to change, aren’t staring in your face demanding your attention. Eventually they come back around and you have to do the thing you’ve been dreading, but there’s that time in between where you can shrug off the thing you need to do it feel urgent.

This is how it feels to be in the cycle. It’s easy to put things off and avoid dealing with them, even though you know you’ll need to.

Add this to a busy life, and you might even feel justified in putting off your health, your exercise, important conversations with your partner, or anything really, because it’s not pressing right in front of you.

We’ve all been there before. I carry tension neck and shoulders and I used to think it was just part of my job (as though I had to sit at a desk for 40+ hours a week without a choice). I would use my work as an excuse to stay in this cycle of stress in my body before it would get bad enough to demand my attention.

Let’s see if this sounds familiar…

Phase 1 – Awareness

You know you’re not operating as well as you could be, but it’s not bad enough to divert your attention. You’re aware of the issue, but you keep going anyways.

In the back of my mind I know it’s been a while since I went to a yoga class. When I wake up, I my neck and back are stiff and it takes a few hours to shake it off.

Phase 2 – Pushing Through

This is when the problem starts to rear its head. Now the problem’s in your face, but for whatever reason, you’re pushing past it hoping to hold out a little longer before you address it. This is where the excuses come in… I don’t have time, it’s expensive, I’m waiting until I go on vacation…

For me, this would be back or shoulder pain starting to set into a specific spot. I can feel myself tightening up and my regular stretches aren’t enough to make a difference. My body feels uncomfortable on a daily basis.

Phase 3 – Knockout

Here’s where the issue demands your attention. At this stage, the problem is the loudest thing for you and it suddenly feels like the most important thing on your to do list. It’s got your attention and it’s taken you out of your regular routine so you can give it the focus it deserves.

This is when I’d wake up and be unable to move and it would be physically impossible for me to sit at my desk and focus on my work. I’d book an emergency appointment with my chiro, my massage therapist, and I just might give myself permission to take a bath and a half day off.

When you wait until Phase 3 to get knocked out by your problem (a broken bone, a house fire, a heart attack, getting fired, your spouse leaving) you go through extra unnecessary pain.

Phase 4 – Dormant

Then the problem would be dormant for a while. Ahh, reprieve. It would feel so sweet, but it wouldn’t last long. This is where-- if there wasn’t a real, lasting change made at the root of the problem (did you take the time for that?)-- Phase 4 cycles back into Phase 1 and you repeat the process again.

Addressing the current issue with a chiropractor and massage therapist would be helpful and it would certainly stop the pain for a while. Without addressing the root of the issue—working long hours at an uncomfortable desk and not moving my body enough—I’d cycle back to Phase 3 within a month. Rinse. Repeat.

Sometimes you get lucky and can cycle between Phases 1 and 2 without having to actually confront the problem. While you might not reach Phase 3 and get knocked off track, you’re certainly not operating at a high level across the board in your life. This alone should be your wake-up call.

When you resist a problem in one area, you don’t just resist the pain, you gradually build resistance toward life. Soon the things you love don’t feel as sweet. You stop doing the things you used to, and you create a thick callus of resistance (physically and emotionally) that keeps you playing small in your life.

Getting Off The Cycle

The hardest part of this stress cycle is recognizing that it’s happening to you in the first place. When you live amongst other people who are cycling in the same way as you, it’s hard to pick out your own behaviour because you’d need to up-level to even see what’s going on.

At this stage, all at once, you’re forced to feel everything you’d been pushing down in the months or years before. In your resistance, you’ve shown life that it needs to raise its voice to get your attention. In response, life had to send you something big enough to get you to wake up and realize you’re not taking care of yourself.

This is how you get into trouble with your health.

This cycle is how relationships erode.

It’s how you lose touch with yourself and the things you love.

This is how you wake up one day and realize you barely recognize the life you’re living. (who made all these choices? How did I end up here?)

The thing is, it doesn't have to be like this. It’s up to you to make the choice. Are you going to stay stuck in this stress cycle waiting for life to blow up in your face? Or do you want to be proactive and step off the cycle so you can start thriving and trending in the direction you want your life to go?

Right now, it's summer. Traditionally, this is time for Phase 1. The weather is warm, the sun is shining, you’re soaking up extra vitamin D and you’re feeling good. But the stress you’re carrying is still lingering in the background, going unaddressed, likely waiting until September.

Are you going to wait for it to blow up, or would you like to do something about it now?

The choice is yours.

For those of you who are serious about stepping off this stress cycle and ending it once and for all, I’ve got some space open in my calendar to get you started.

Book your Stress-Less Breakthrough Call with me so we can identify where you’re at in the stress cycle and how to get you off it, for good.