Fear not.

I’m sure you’ve been inundated with all the emails, messages and news stories on the Coronavirus. I’m right there with you.

However, since most of what we’re hearing is either telling us, directly or indirectly, “to be afraid” or to be “very concerned” or “extremely worried,” I think we also need to hear the messages that tell us to do the opposite. That may sound counter-intuitive or like I’m advising you to throw caution to the wind, but it isn’t and I’m not.

Keep reading to see why…

Ironically (or not), fear is the very topic God had me teach on in the women’s Bible Study during our mission trip to the Dominican Republic last week. It’s only hitting me now why it was so important for me to speak on our fears. And worries. And anxieties. Because they clearly are running at a fever high pitch in the world right now.

(Choosing that topic is not a coincidence. It’s an all-knowing God knowing exactly what we need before we know we need it.)

Why am I sharing this?

Because if God tells us not to fear and He knows everything we will face, then we need to trust there are reasons for this. Also, in a time where our immune systems are our defense against this wily virus, stress and anxiety are two things that are guaranteed to weaken it.

So if we choose to give into fear and anxiety and let our stress levels rise, we become more susceptible to the very thing we’re trying to avoid and fight. (Pretty sure, this is just one of the reasons God tells us not to fear. Just sayin’.)

Which is why, if you’re feeling stressed and anxious either about the virus itself or how the realities of it will impact your daily life and livelihood and you want to experience more peace and want to keep your immune system – and your faith – strong, I have two things for you:

  • My 5-day email series, From Stressed to Centered, that is designed to bring you more energy and more peace in just 10-minutes per day. Click this link to get started with that.
  • An invitation to receive the Bible Study I put together on fear so you can see what the Bible says, why we fear and why God tells us not to. If you’d like to take me up on this, comment below or fill out the form here.

Lessons from the home gym: Is your inner perfectionist holding you back?

christian health coach

Inner perfectionist? This is for you. #mondaymotivation

It may not look like it, but this is my workout space.

It’s shared with a drum set, tools, things we store and it’s in a creepy century-home basement. It ain’t pretty and isn’t perfect and it feels embarrassing to share.

But it’s where the work happens.

Not just the literal work of working out. It’s so.much.more than that.

It’s the work of choosing to:

  • sweat it out to become stronger instead of sitting in the comfortable places
  • be okay with modifying moves that would otherwise cause injury even though I really want to go all out
  • believe that tiny steps toward a goal are to be celebrated instead of an excuse to give up or get down on myself that I’m not making massively impressive leaps and bounds
  • accept the imperfect setting and being grateful for it
  • be kind to myself and appreciate what my body can do instead of what it can’t
  • have a spirit of play with my workout schedule and approach so that it feels like it’s working with my life instead of against it

The inner perfectionist in me has to fight this battle daily and it’s held me back for far too long.

Which is why, if you also struggle with setting crazy high standards for yourself and battle your own inner perfectionist, I want to encourage you that it’s oooohh.kay. to accept the #perfectlyimperfect.

The world won’t end if you don’t get it right all the time or if your progress, your space, your dream doesn’t feel impressive “enough.”

It doesn’t have to.

The important thing is for you to keep getting up, getting in the ring, gritting it out and leave the results up to the Lord.

Yes?

Right!

Action step for today: Share with us one perfectly imperfect action that you will take today that will bring you one step closer to your goal.

Want to connect on the daily? Find me over on Instagram.

Looking to dive deeper into what’s been holding you back in your health? Fill out the contact form and tell me you’re ready for a breakthrough along with the best way to reach you and I’ll be in touch.

oatmeal raisin cookie dough bites, vegan + sugar free


First up: The winner of the Oh She Glows Everyday cookbook by Angela Liddon was Quinn. Aaaand, I just got word that she received it today!

Now something for everyone…this recipe for oatmeal raisin cookie dough bites. I think it was actually one of Angela’s cookie recipes that I was trying a few years ago, when I discovered how toasted pecans have the same buttery butterscotch flavor as oatmeal raisin cookies (ORC). In a traditional ORC, it’s the brown sugar and butter that give it that homey flavor.
I love finding simple, easy and no-sugar ways to make tasty desserts and snacks and this one checks off each of those boxes. Plus it has been kid- and crowd-approved.

So without further ado, here you go:

Oatmeal Raisin Cookie Dough Bites

2 c. pecans, toasted*
1 c. date paste
1 1/4 c. rolled oats, organic if possible
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 c. shredded, unsweetened coconut
1 c. raisins

Place pecans in a food processor  and blend until nuts are crumbly. Add remaining ingredients, except the raisins, and blend until well combined and the “dough” holds together when pressed between your fingers. Pour into a mixing bowl, add raisins and “knead” in with your hands (it’s easier than a spoon ;)). Form dough into balls that are about 1″ in diameter. Can be stored in an airtight container for several days.

Recipe Notes

This recipe can be cut in half for a smaller amount or for only 1-2 people. If you have a larger family or a crowd, I suggest keeping the ingredient amounts as is.

*See this post for a quick and easy way to toast nuts.

 

 

 

 

Celebrating Success…#LowSugarNaturally

Today I’m excited to share a #lowsugarnaturally success story with you since we are just completing the first week of the free Sugar Pretox Challenge. I met Stephanie through a Facebook group when I shared about this article I wrote for our local paper. I asked her to share her story and she graciously agreed…

2016-04-05 09.45.53

Tell me about yourself…

I am a stay-at-home mom to my five-year old daughter McKenna! My husband and I will be married for six years on May 15th! I love crafts and spending time with family and friends. Laughing as much as I can, and making others laugh too- sort of the class clown! I like to cook and decorate and honestly do a little of this, a little of that!

Why did you decide to cut sugar from your diet?

I have always struggled with my weight, especially after having my daughter when I topped out at around 380 lbs. I tried random diets and counting calories, I added walking with my daughter to my weekly routines….nothing helped.

One of my friends suggested I try cutting carbs and sugar from my diet. So on January 6th, 2014 I decided to stop eating sugar, processed foods and most carbs. The weight melted off and within about a month I felt the best I can remember. I was sleeping better, my skin improved, had more energy, and of course lost weight at a pretty steady pace.

In about a year and a half I had dropped 125 lbs. But then I hit a plateau and didn’t lose much after that year and a half.

This past November, I was frustrated and decided for the holidays to go ahead and add sugar back in my diet…..horrible idea! I gained about 25 lbs super fast and felt like garbage! So, after the new year, I went right back to no sugar and low carbs and have already lost 15 lbs.

It was a good reminder of how I used to feel and how I never want to feel again!

2016-04-05 09.43.12

Any other benefits? My blood pressure and cholesterol levels also have improved.

What was the hardest part of cutting out sugar for you? The first 2 weeks. It feels like you have the flu as you go through withdrawal. Plus, being around tons of sweets at parties and holidays and the fact that people don’t “get it” and can’t seem to see why I won’t just have the cake or some cookies, etc.

How can you encourage others in trying to go sugar-free? Keep at it for 3 weeks, no matter how you feel. It may not be fun or easy at first but it gets better! I’ve also found that foods with processed sugar crap don’t even taste good to me at all anymore! It coats your mouth with this weird taste and immediately feels like a brick in my stomach! I also try to encourage people through my low-card Instagram account: Lowcarb_stephaknee

Favorite recipe?

My Brussel sprouts that I get great compliments on:

1.5 lbs of halved Brussel sprouts
2 tbsp butter
3 tbsp soy sauce
2 teaspoons spicy brown mustard
2 teaspoons stevia
Salt to taste
Pepper to taste
1 to 3 cloves garlic, minced.
Splash of apple cider vinegar.

Add the butter and Brussels to a pan and keep on medium heat, stirring every few min.

Add the rest of the ingredients to a sauce pan and whisk up (sometimes I add more stevia, sometimes more mustard….I do it to taste). Keep both on medium heat stirring occasionally. Once the Brussels are cooked to your liking, and the sauce has thickened a bit pour the sauce over the Brussels and keep on low heat for a few min. These are like a sweet and sour glazed Brussel sprouts…I make them 1 to 3 Times a week and there’s never leftovers!!!

Thanks, Stephanie!

If you are interested in learning more about the Sugar Pretox/Detox Challenge and would like to take this on yourself, please visit this blog post. If you would like to join the #lowsugarnaturally community, please follow this link to my #lowsugarnaturally facebook group.