In good health

The old adage is once you turn 40, every­thing goes down­hill, health wise. I thought that was something “old people” used to say un­til I hit 40. I can tell you I don’t have the energy I used to or the strength. The extra pounds I carry, no doubt, weigh me down. Yes, I have a mirror and a scale, thank you very much. I don’t need others to point out the obvious. However, my aging has played a factor in my overall health.

This issue is our health guide. We are covering health issues that have had the greatest effect on Chaldeans. We bring you guest col­umns from various health profes­sionals.

I realized over the years the importance of staying active. Last year, my husband purchased bikes for all three of us. We also got a dog for various reasons includ­ing with the intention of walking more. I love to research different events hosted around town that we can participate in. This month I share with you places to walk and ride your bikes. There is so much more. You can do your own simple searches and find fun activities for the entire family.

We also share our ECRC corner that focuses on faith and our spiri­tual health – our relationship with Christ. Thanks to Karam Bahnam, Patrice Abona and Jeff Kassab who rotate in writing these monthly columns.

As my body has declined over the years, my spiritual health and emotional health have improved tremendously. For that, I am grate­ful. I am in such a better place than I was years ago. If only I knew then what I know now. Boy, would I care much less what other people thought and said about me.

Today, I can honestly say, I don’t care unless there has been a misun­derstanding or if I inadvertently offended anyone. I would want to correct that immediately. But, if I am being judged for my weight, my gender, by beliefs, my bank ac­count, my car, house, family, for the mistake’s others have made– you name it – I let it go.

I have realized many important things in my years. None of us live long enough to learn every­thing we need to know so we must learn from others. I have sought the knowl­edge of others. I want to share with you a few tips that have helped improve my emotional health. This is what I know.

1. First and foremost … Trust in God. Surrendering has al­ways been a tough one for me but has proven to be the best thing I can do. Hanging in my kitchen near my table is a picture of the Di­vine Mercy with the saying “Jesus, I trust in You!” I look at the every day and read the line as a reminder of who really is in control.

2. The Truth always comes out – eventually. Don’t go out of your way to defend or prove yourself to anyone. If someone doesn’t want to believe you when you speak truth, let it go. They will eventually see or hear the truth. It’s inevitable.

3. Speak truth always and if you don’t know the truth, say nothing. It is easy to engage in gossip. We all do it. Don’t engage in a conversa­tion just to be part of it. In fact, sometimes you have to walk away.

4. Speak less and listen more. I love to talk. I communicate for a living both in print and in broad­cast. I speak publicly about public relations, crisis communications and communicating as a Chris­tian. In recent months, I have been training to be a coach and that re­quires listening intently. When you listen, you learn and are more help­ful to others. You have two ears and one mouth for a reason. Use your ears more.

5. Forgive your enemies. Jesus tells us to do so. However, this is another tough one for me, probably more so than surrendering. I have made it a habit of mine to offer the Eucharist during mass to whomev­er has hurt me or hurt someone I know. I pray for them during mass. It was something my father always encouraged me to do as a young child but never understood the im­portance of it until I got older.

6. If you want joy, you have to seek it first. Joy is truly found in Christ. If you want to be a joyful missionary as we are called to do, then read scripture. Start with the Gospels. This is something my Spir­itual Advisor suggested I do. I have learned to speak like a Christian be­cause I read the teachings of Christ.

7. Discern more. Find out what God has called you to do in this life. Christians are blessed with Charisms upon Baptism. Find out what yours are and use them to bring others to Christ and fulfill your purpose in life.

Our bodies are temples. Our minds are powerful. Our souls need saving. We share this issue with you – all in Good Health!