We all need the basics:

1.     Sleep
2.    Nutritious food and water
3.    Exercise
4.    The company of others: friends, family and strangers
5.    A reason to get up in the morning

This week’s “basic topic, is food, water and exercise.

First of all, for those who are in need of sleep I wonder if any of you tried some of the suggestions from last week. I continually work with the set bedtime as it doesn’t come naturally. This is lifelong for me. What about you?

I have little to say about food and water except for this: be cautious about adopting extreme diets. What we eat is important and it is equally important to savour and enjoy our food, in the company of others. When possible make your own meals.  Veggies, lots of them; whole grains; nuts; fruit; protein. Moderation and variety are two of the keys. Of course the occasional treat is also important.

Be wary of outlandish food claims. Eating well and drinking plenty of water are part of a healthy lifestyle. They aren’t a cure all but they certainly up our chances to improve the quality of our everyday lives, and reduce our chances for certain illnesses.  The ripple effects of eating well or eating poorly are worth paying attention to. And there are no guarantees in life as you all know. Eating is a celebration. Make the most of it.

Make an appointment with a nutritionist if you want some help to get started on making change.

This is simply how I look at food. I don’t know what is best for anyone else.

Exercise: The best exercise is the one you will do. Here’s the thing. We must move our bodies. Just like we need good food, we are designed to move. We do not need to be action figures or marathoners. Talk to a volunteer at Wellspring. You don’t need to exercise alone. In fact you up your chances of sticking to exercise if you have a buddy. Like food, there are a plethora of articles on exercise. Use the free services at Wellspring to cut a swath through that underbrush. Moving our bodies helps pretty much everything that ails us. It can be as simple or as complicated as you choose. It can be gentle and slow. It can be fun. (Especially after you have exercised!) It feels great! Moving our bodies is good medicine. Don’t overlook it.

Things to do this week, if you choose:

Read: Lean Into It

Short Ted Talk: What Makes a Good Life

What Matters Most?  

Excerpts from an interviews of Dr. Rachel Remen by  Dr. Dean Ornish, originally published in Newsweek 2008.


A few suggestion’s that you can adapt to your particular circumstances, for this week.  If  your life is going as you want, there is no reason to try and look for something that isn’t working. As with all assignments, you take what you can use and you leave the rest. That is why I include a talk, or some words of wisdom or a poem or a song – dropping a variety of seeds in the hope that something may speak to each of you.

Cultivating  habit’s: I would stick with one or two and focus on that. This isn’t meant to be a chore, rather a chance to experiment and enhance your love of life.

  • Choose one meal a day where you sit down and notice the food you are eating. Use your favourite dishes. Add a flower for the table. Invite a friend to dine with you.
  • Pick something important that matters to you. Or if you have started last week keep working on that everyday.  5/10 minutes a day is a good start. 15 minutes seems to work best for me. Choose the time and put it in your calendar. Try see.
  • This week call an old friend who you haven’t spoken to in awhile and see how they are doing. If they are close by you may invite them for a walk or a coffee.
  • Spend time outdoors everyday and keep track in a notebook – the birds that you hear and the ones that you see.
  • Find a funny story about your own situation. Share it with another and if you are willing, with the group. Send it to me.

Thanks for showing up and I will be sending you a short email on Friday. Warm greetings, Trudy

PS If you want to send me a note you are welcome to do so at trudy@livingwellwithillness.com Please remind me if I have forgotten to do something. I hope you will make suggestions and if you have comments you want to share with the group, I am happy to post them.