4 Acts Of Kindness That Are FREE + Good For Your Mental Health

How is kindness good for your mental health? It reduces stress and boosts self-esteem! This week I’ll share 4 acts of kindness, that are FREE and who doesn’t like FREE? The impact of these kindness tips will benefit you and those you share them with!

Here are 4 FREE acts of kindness you can do immediately!


1) IM or text a friend you have not contacted in a while. I like to say, I know this is a random text, yet I wanted you to know that you have been in my thoughts and I hope you are staying safe & healthy.

NEXT, amp up that text or IM and send a photo or memory you have and share that this was in your social media feed and it made you smile and hope it lightens up their day too.

Facebook made it easy for you! Go to the sidebar where it says explore. Look for the “memories” option and you are on the fast track to kindness.

FINALLY, send a music link that connects you to that friend, co-worker, etc. For example, every time I hear the song “The Safety Dance” I text or call my BFF since 2 nd grade to share that this song is playing and I’m thinking of her.

2) Give a genuine compliment to those in your space. Partner, child, co-worker, or employer.
My hubby and I share 2 things at the end of the day. First, we will share one thing that we loved about them that day (were they kind to someone in the grocery store, helped an older person, or had patience with you 🙂 ) and second, what they did that we are thankful for that day. It never gets old because each day is different!

You can write on a post-it note words of encouragement or empowerment to a co-worker or employer as we begin to re-enter our workplaces.

3) Join a LOCAL FB group and see how you can be helpful in your community. For example, we had a locally owned pet store that had an opportunity for customers to donate to a local dog food bank to help a local animal shelter.

Other examples are noticing if someone needs help shopping, dropping off or picking up mail, etc.

4) SMILE!! I’m not kidding! Be intentional and genuine! Smile at the grocery store cashier and thank them! Smile at people when you are walking your dog! Smiling is a healthy contagion! Smiling reduces stress and increases your happiness!

Let me know if these tips were helpful!

Till next time,

Take What You Learn & Make A Difference It!

How To Overcome Zoom Fatigue

Do you ever feel exhausted after a zoom meeting? Zoom fatigue is real! It impacts your body and your emotional health! This week, Anastasia will share how Zoom fatigue impacts your body, why it depletes you emotionally, and give you 6 tips to overcome it!

In March 2020, there were over 200 million Zoom meetings! How many of you have felt drained after one Zoom meeting or experience a mind fog during one? Zoom fatigue happens because your body is stagnant!

Zoom fatigue happens because your body is stagnant

Think of in-person meetings and how you move your body, whether it is looking at other people, tilting your chair back, swiveling in your chair, etc.

It isn’t just zoom meetings for business. It is telemedicine, teledentistry, virtual conferences, therapy sessions, teacher meetings, CE, training, etc. 

The truth is that video conferences demand more focus! We have to work harder to process non-verbal cues, like facial expressions or body language.

It can be emotionally exhausting because you may feel like you have to be “on” or bring MORE energy during each meeting.

Silence makes people anxious about whether the technology is working. Silence makes people uncomfortable when on video conferences. A 2014 study by German academics showed that delays on phone or conferencing systems shared our views of people negatively: even delays of 1.2 seconds made people perceive the responder as less friendly or focused.

Finally, we are uncomfortable without eye contact. Learn to look at the camera instead of yourself within the screen on your laptop, iPad, iPhone.

6 Tips To Overcome Zoom Fatigue

1. Give yourself buffer time in-between each Zoom meeting. Get 16 oz. water to place beside you and refresh it after each meeting. Hydration is something many of us forget! Stretch. Close your eyes & breathe.

2. Determine which Zoom meetings can be called in verse a video conference.

3. Ask whether the camera may be turned off during the meeting so you may stand up, or stretch without disrupting the meeting. Alternate your Zoom meetings by standing and sitting.

4. Be mindful of ergonomics. How long are you sitting? What is your posture like? Do you have a supportive chair for your lower back?

5. Get outside for at least 1 hour a day. Fresh air and zero screen time are recharging time for you.

6. Avoid multitasking with emails, social media, etc. Be old school. Get a notebook and take notes to help you retain what was mentioned during that meeting and how you can help.

Let me know if this information was helpful to you!

Till next time,

Take What You Learn & Make A Difference With It!

What Dental Patients Can Expect From Dental Practices In A COVID-19 World

This week Anastasia answers a viewer’s question, “I have an upcoming wellness visit with my dental hygienist, what can I expect from my dental practice?”

Is your dental practice keeping you in the loop? Are they sharing what to expect from their practice as they reopen? A video on their social media pages? Have you received a newsletter? Text or email? Is it on their website?

Here is what dental patients can expect.

1. Pre-screening questions BEFORE you get to your dental practice for your dental visit.

2. As soon as you walk in, there should be hand sanitizer + forehead or temporal thermometer. Some practices will have pulse oximeter.

3. In a perfect world, as soon as you enter, have your temporal temp. taken you are immediately taken into the treatment room. * In a next to a perfect world, you are social distancing in the reception room with very few people & everyone is wearing masks. NOTE: There are no magazines, coffee / tea stations, or kids’ toys.

4. TREATMENT (Wellness or Restorative) Your dental team will look different. In addition to PPE, gloves, masks, lab coats or scrubs, protective eyewear or loupes … LOOK FOR Surgical caps, gowns, booties AND face shields. (THIS IS IMPORTANT) Expect your appointment to take longer. Expect the dental team to minimize aerosols by doing the following *PreRinse *Selective Polishing or Zero Air Polishing * Hand instrumentation verse Ultrasonic *Rubber dams when dental handpieces are used for restorative. *Use of HVE (I’ve called it the mac daddy suction)

5. Teledentistry – may be for consultations, or virtual exams (no contact) Personally, I’d recommend that once your treatment is completed that you use hand sanitizer & place your mask back on prior to paying for your service at the front desk. Always ask your provider questions. This is your health.

Finally, breathe and smile!

How To Set Healthy Boundaries During COVID-19

Having healthy boundaries is a part of self-care! Where do you begin? This week, why healthy boundaries improve your relationships, and how to effectively communicate your needs to your partner, family, and friends. It’s about who you allow in your space! Space is your personal time, your emotional space, and where you give and spend your energy.

Sometimes the combination can feel quite crowded! That’s when my hubby, David, and I decided we would add a fun element to our communication when that happens. We say, “Get out of my nest”.

When your personal & emotional space feel crowded, I’ve found it helpful to say “Get out of my nest”.

anastasia

How are setting healthy boundaries helpful for you?

  1. You have defined your identity. You are confident. Not arrogant. Your confidence is going to work for you as others will now know what to expect from you. How refreshing is that?
  2. Healthy boundaries honor what you need. It is important to not judge other people’s choices or boundaries. Be kind & listen with an open mind.
  3. Determine the consequences for when someone crosses that line. Be committed to take action. What would that look like? Personally, I’ve chosen to unfriend individuals on social media, end friendships, relationships, and my work environment. It was not easy. When someone disrespects you more than once and you now know what to expect of them, ask yourself, “how will this impact my emotional & physical health if I continue to allow this.”?
  4. When you consistently follow 1-3 you will be respected. You don’t have to be loved or liked by everyone to be respected. 
  5. Ask your partner, friends, family & co-workers what their healthy boundaries may be or how you can best be helpful to them and …. listen.

How to communicate effectively is by using “I” statements.

Let’s say, you don’t want to talk about the news or COVID-19 anymore today. You may consider the following;

“It is not helpful to me to talk about COVID right now.” 

“It has been helpful for me to limit my news/media to 20 minutes a day. And I’m maxed out.”

“I am feeling overwhelmed today, may we change the topic? “

Here are some of my healthy boundary examples during COVID-19.

  1. TOPIC: Weight gain memes. 

ACTION: I scroll past them on social media without commenting because I’m hoping the algorithm will see that I don’t engage and find me other memes to interact with. So far, my theory has worked!

ACTION: If a weight gain meme is texted to me. I recognize that it is meant for humor & without a mean intention. Yet, I have set my boundary by texting back, “It is stressful for me to see memes that make fun of women gaining weight during COVID.”

2. TOPIC: Complaining or Boredom Texts / Posts

ACTION: I appreciate your view, however, I am focusing my energy on how I can be more thankful, happy for what I have right now. 

Both of those examples share what I will allow into my space without being unkind.

How do you have healthy boundary success? Get real with your feelings and what triggers your stress. Recognize who & what you will allow in your space to be your best.

Let me know if this has been helpful to you!

Anastasia

Dog Owner Tips: How To Prepare For Your Re-Entry Into The Workplace After COVID-19

Dogs are loving this time with their owners! What will they do when you re-enter the workplace? I’ll give you tips to prepare them and tips for you to spend time now to save you time and money later!

1. Know the breed. This will prepare you for what type of potential health issues from hip dysplasia to blindness. It will also give you insight as to how much exercise your dog will require to be healthy physically and mentally.

2. Your puppy will not be able to be boarded or socialize at doggy daycare or walks until they have received all of their vaccinations. That said, set yourself up for success by making arrangements for a dog sitter when you are away. I recognize that online pet-sitting apps can be successful for pet owners.

Take the time now to check out dog boarding & doggie day care businesses near you. Look at their social media pages. This will give you an idea of what the atmosphere will be like for your dog. Call and ask questions. Plan an onsite visit.

It took us 3 full days to select Love My Dog Downtown for our husky Gibbs.

3. If you are going to invest in a pet sitter app during the holidays, get a webcam. The safety of your pet & home comes first. That said, be careful as some pet sitters either overbook themselves to get extra money and will be late getting to your pet. Accidents happen and then your pet will be distressed.

4. Socialize your pet ASAP. It is so important to have them play and meet friends as much as it is for us humans. Take them to doggy daycare or dog parks. Our husky is friendly with small and large dogs. We had him socializing as soon as he had the thumbs up from our vet.

5. Know more than your vet about nutrition. Gibbs was so sick as a puppy. Our vet had us buy prescription dog food with chicken. His condition was not improving. I finally reached out to a holistic nutritionist who asked me to check out the ingredients of dog food. Gibbs in the wild will likely eat salmon, turkey, lamb, bison, not chicken. This is not a sponsorship, yet I must share with you that Nulo pet food literally saved his life. He does not eat chicken. He is a healthy husky who eats grain-free food and treats.

6. Get healthy treats and puzzle toys. I found a ball and other puzzle toys he had to actively nudge to get his Nulo treats out. Puzzle toys are rewarding for them and are mentally engaging. Winning!

7. Stay committed to training your dog. It isn’t just when they are a puppy. I still work with Gibbs on his commands including walking. He is now four.

8. Check out pet insurance or financial options such as Care Credit, TruPanion or Nationwide. This will take time as you assess what plans are a best fit for you and your pet. Good news is that you have the time now to be informed because as we know, life happens.

Bored Is The New Busy

Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, many of us were busy. Busy was our lifestyle. Busy was our excuse for not exercising, nurturing friendships, learning or doing something new, etc. Busy became an addiction to the endless availability of environmental stimulation. 


Enter boredom. 
Our activities are restricted. Now we are unable to find environmental stimulation.  


Bored is the new busy. 

Anastasia Turchetta


Bored is the new busy. It doesn’t have to be. 
Freidrich Nietzsche described boredom as “the unpleasant calm that precedes creative acts.” 

What if we didn’t run from being bored? What if, we visited with it, taking a peak internally and in that stillness unlock our own creativity or transformation? 

Sound crazy? 
Isaac Newton created calculus and William Shakespeare wrote “King Lear” and “Macbeth” during a pandemic.  

What will you create, learn, or discover?

Me? I’m learning to write more content on personal growth & work-life wellness. I’d also like to complete a children’s book.

How My Experience With Grief & Loneliness Prepared Me Emotionally During COVID-19

Have you felt anxious, stressed, sad, tired, angry, restless, or in a fog like you are living in a different dimension lately? If you answered yes, you are not alone. I believe we are experiencing grief and loneliness as we stay strong in our fight to stay healthy as individuals and as a country during the COVID-19 pandemic.

We grieve the many things we were able to do with friends, family or co-workers. We feel lonely or disconnected from our staying home in effort to stay safe and healthy. I understand.

In 2016, I was so excited to marry the man of my dreams! We were in our forties, and opted to combine our wedding and honeymoon so we traveled to a destination out of the country. Prior to leaving the USA, we talked with my mom and my futre in-laws. We felt blessed and blissful! The day after arriving at our destination, I received a message sharing that my mom had suddenly passed away from a pulmonary embolism. My world would never be the same.

I understand what it is like to not be able to see your loved one, visit them in a hospital, hold their hand, give them a hug, or hear their voice. I understand what it is like to virtually make funeral arrangements. I understand what it is like to go back to your life feeling so disconnected and detached. I had to learn how to grow through grief and loneliness.

  1. Learn to like to being alone with yourself. If you are unable to like being with yourself or are bored being alone with yourself, then how will anybody feel connected to you or want to be around you? This is an opportunity for you to do your best self-care. Love yourself. Create new goals. Honor the process.
  2. Release your expectations of yourself, your intimate relationships, friends, family & others. By doing this, you set healthy boundaries which will be rewarding for your emotional health.
  3. Visit social media with intention. In 2016, I attempted to escape my loneliness by being on social media more often. It was August – December during the Presidential campaign. Toxic political posts in my feed only triggered sadness, anxiety and stress. What I found helpful was to limit my time on social media. It became optimized when I used it for (1) personal growth (2) professional growth. Intentionally seek out motivation, empowerment, mindset boosting affirmations, and for those you consider mentors or leaders that you can learn from to hone your career craft.

In times like these, you have 2 choices to overcome grief and loneliness. You can choose to nurture existing relationships or form new ones. The most important relationship is the connection with yourself.

How To Avoid Weight Gain During COVID-19

Health. How do we achieve it? Weight loss. How can we make it happen? The acronym HOW will be our guide to avoiding weight gain and staying healthy during this COVID-19 crisis.

First, STOP reading the memes on social media that reference going to your refrigerator to eat something bad, or how you will gain the COVID 15 lbs. Why? Because what you read plants a seed!

What You Read Plants A Seed!

anastasia

Let’s get to the acronym HOW for How To Avoid Weight Gain During COVID-19.

H – Health.

We know that existing health conditions will place you at a higher risk for illnesses and COVID-19. According the the CDC here are the health conditions to be aware of.

  1. Heart disease
  2. Diabetes
  3. Immunocompromised Diseases
  4. Liver & Kidney Diseases
  5. Obesity

What is your current state of health? This will determine how you keep your immune system and body healthy, which may direct you differently regarding nutritional choices than the rest of your family. Honor that.

Staying home & staying healthy CAN coexist.

Anastasia

O – Online Wellness Programs

I found 2 platforms to check out. I’m NOT getting paid from them to share this information.

Noom. Noom’s approach is from behavior change and disease management. They have free resources, recipes on their website and social media platforms. I found some cool private FB communities that range from new moms to women over 40 & going through menopause. The opportunity for membership is available which will place you with a coaching team and goal specialist to walk beside you on your health adventure.

WW “formally Weight Watchers”. WW’s messages embrace wellness & healthy living. The experience from their website to their social media platforms is one of empowerment. I first noticed WW when my husband and I were selecting our dinners from Blue Apron. You see, I’m a clueless chef. I was seeking something to help a sister out.

I’m a clueless chef. I was seeking something to help a sister out!

Anastasia

WW memberships give you the opportunity to have coaches, weekly workshops that empower you and nurture your accountability. Obviously, with COVID-19 pandemic, the in person workshops had to take a back seat. No worries as WW now offers ZOOM virtual meetings and they are a hit based on what I’ve read on their social communities. VERY cool! Especially if members would get ZOOM bombed by Oprah … right?

Both online wellness platforms give you opportunity to gain health & well-being. Check them out and see what best fits you at this time.

W – Water

Hydration! Staying home means drink your water as you can take bathroom breaks at your leisure! Seriously though, drinking water helps your immune system stay healthy, it flushes toxins from your body, it helps us to lose weight and assists us with weight management. There are MANY more benefits of hydration that you can google.

HOW to avoid weight gain during COVID-19 is realistic when using this acronym! Let me know your thoughts!

How To Avoid Weight Gain During COVID-19

Healthy Activities To Do At Home While Social Distancing

Two words. Stay Home. In many households, the next words will be “I’m bored.” This week I’ve got 5 healthy activities for you to do at home! Leave boredom and move your body, exercise your mind and fuel your relationships!

Healthy Activities To Do At Home While Social Distancing

1) Family Activities | Here are 3 suggestions.

* You know how some people have a game night? Have a “let’s find items that we can recycle and save the earth” night! Items like old phones, iPods, Flip Video, Cameras, etc. Apple products take some items back once you have deleted all info and you can use point to purchase something news.

* Scavenger Hunt | Last week I shared a well-being app Super Better. They have a scavenger hunt available that offers home hunts for up to TWO weeks!

*Learn a new language. Learn a foreign language. Learn sign language or learn to interpret body language.

2) Interview Grandparents & record the audio or video. Create family stories to last generations! Ask True or False or Fun Fact Questions! TIP: Note on my video where to place your phone, Ipad or laptop so your family memory won’t be looking up one’s nose.

3) Train Your Dog! Get up on your couch and train your dog! From sit-stays to walking on a leash, invest in your commitment to be consistent pack leader and nurture the bond between you and your dog.

4) Communication With Your Partner At the end of each day, share these 2 things. What do you love about that person and what are you thankful for?

5) Kindness Activity | Could be a nightly music jam session in your driveway. Next, notice at least 3 friends a day that you have not seen on social media. Reach out to them via text or IM to share that you are thinking of them and ask if you can call to catch up. People are grieving in 3 areas, (1) Loss of a job, (2) Loss of a loved one (3) Loss of a pet. Your kindness will help lift someone up.

This is how you will go from I’m bored to I scored!

Stay home & stay healthy everyone!

5 Self-care Apps For Mental Health During COVID-19 Crisis

This road trip takes us on a route for well-being during the COVID-19 crisis.

Dare to self-care using 5 awesome apps for mental health & motivation during a highly stressful time in your life!
Technology gifts us the ability to accomplish well-being!
I’ll share 5 apps that target mindfulness, resilience & empowerment!
FREE to download, some have extended their support or free trials during the COVID-19 crisis! What can you do if in-app purchasing, not an option? I’ve got you covered!
1) All 5 have a website with FREE blogs & resources
2) All 5 have a social media presence on Facebook, Twitter & LinkedIn. Take advantage of their messaging!

  1. Calm
  2. Talkspace
  3. SuperBetter
  4. Happify
  5. Headspace
5 Self-Care For Mental Health During COVID-19 Crisis