Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Top Tools for increasing your energy at home and at work

  • Do morning pages as soon as you wake up before you do anything! I read about Morning Pages in Julia Cameron’s “The Artist’s Way”. She recommends writing 3 pages in a journal and write down all your moans and groans and your hopes and dreams. I have found an excellent website which enables you to do morning pages online which is a very motivating way to clear your head each morning:

  • Meditate. I do not find it easy to sit still for a long time and prefer to be doing. I found a great way to meditate where you listen and you don’t need to force your mind to be quiet. You listen for an hour to nice sounds like rain water and gongs. There are 12 levels to work through:

  • Find out what your strengths are with the Realise2 assessment and use them more. Not only do you find out more about your strengths, which shouldn’t be a surprise, but you will also find out about your learned behaviours, which look to be strengths on the surface, as you will be good at them, but they drain your energy. I found this quite eye opening and not bad at £14:

  • I know I have mentioned Wild Divine before in a previous post, but they now have an online version which is very easy to access: You still need all the biometric feedback kit but you can access all the software on the website and it is easy to do a quick few exercises to calm down breathing and heart rate and basically slow down. A great way to increase your energy!

Good luck increasing your energy!

Monday, July 06, 2009

Living in Geneva

This is a picture of the wonderful Jet D'Eau in Geneva. I was very lucky to have the opportunity to work in Geneva so here is my top 10 list on living there:

  1. 1. Sign up to Glocals. This website used to be called Geneva Online and is great for meeting people and for finding out about what is going on. It is also easy to post a message and find people with things in common, eg if you want to go running with other people or set up a book club or watch films, etc.

  2. It took me a while to find a good apartment in Geneva. So, rather than staying in an expensive hotel while you are looking, Hotel Cite Verdaine is a nice place to stay with reasonable long-term rates. It is in a great location in the centre, has easy access to all transport and has internet access.

  3. On the subject of looking for a nice flat, have a look at - I think I looked at it first thing on a Thursday morning and got in quick and picked up a great apartment in Grand Rue in the old town (CH 1204).

  4. If you are looking for a nice castle to visit, then you must visit Chateau de Chillon. It is on the other side of the lake and the journey on the train there is very scenic. It has so much character and it is fun to explore.

  5. While living in Geneva, you will be hopping on and off buses, so it is well worth getting a bus pass as soon as you arrive. Not only do you never need to buy any tickets which is stressful when there is a bus coming along, but you do get good value for money. You can pick one up at the train station.

  6. Here are some of my favourite restaurants:

    Chez Ma Cousine (old town, 6 place du Bourg-de-Four) - great for picking up a takeaway chicken and chips (and salad) to take home to eat after a long day's work. Very tasty and also very quick as they have them ready-made.

    Le The (65 rue des bains, 1205, Tel 079 436 7718) - you need to book as there are only a few tables. It has the most divine dimsum and an amazing range of Chinese teas.

    Les 5 Portes (8 rue de Zurich, 1201, Tel 022 731 8438) - this is a lovely restaurant with delicious food and a great atmosphere. It is towards the station rather than near the old town.

    Le Pain Quotidien (21 boulevard Helvétique, 1207) - this is a great place to go on a weekend morning. It is very relaxed and has some delicious things for breakfast. There is a massive table in the centre which you can share with other people and there are some amazing things to go on bread.

  7. When it is sunny and you want to relax, it is nice to visit Parc des Bastions which is near the old town.

  8. A most delicious food to eat is Quiche Tartiflette. I am sure it is pretty bad for you! It is a mix of a Spanish omelette and a quiche lorraine as it has potatoes in it. You can get them at the airport in the cafe to the right of the departures entrance.

  9. More food.....if you need takeaway food but want it healthy, pick up some very good sushi from Globus (rue de Rhone 48). There are lots of other yummy foods here too.

  10. If you are in Geneva during one of the meteor showers eg the Perseids which usually peak on the 12th of August each year, it is worth going to see it at the lovely park, Signal de Bougy. It is about 30 minutes drive from Geneva so you do need a car. There is very little light pollution and if there are no clouds, you will get a great view of the Milky Way and hopefully some splendid meteors.

Monday, September 04, 2006

The UMPH plan

Like everyone, I got out of my exercise routine over the past couple of months so am happy to be back to the gym. So yesterday, while doing my cardio, I realised that there are many aspects for life to be quite balanced when it comes to health. I thought I would give the 6 aspects a nice name: The UMPH Plan which stands for Ultra Mental Physical Health.

3 aspects keep us in great physical health: fitness, nutrition and sleep. And another 3 aspects keep us mentally healthy too: a job / work / a hobby we love that challenges us, relationships (ie friends, family, significant other) and rest / relaxation, ie switching off from work.

These 6 aspects are shown in the above diagram. I plan to come up with some questions / statements so that you can figure out a score for each of the 6 areas. Keep posted!

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Quick Healthy Breakfasts

It occurred to me this morning while doing a lovely run in Great Windsor Park that many people still do not realise the importance of having breakfast. Breakfast literally "breaks the fast" that we have during the night and the result of going without breakfast is that by the time we get to mid morning, we are so starving that we overeat. The ideal is never to get over-hungry.

So, if you do not feel like making porridge every morning with honey and banana which really is the best breakfast, try a couple of these quickies:

Superfood smoothie
I have a great naturopath who started me on "superfood" which you can just stir into apple juice in the morning. It is full of vitamins and minerals, high in B vitamins and B12. Even better is if you do some apple juice, 2 tablespoons of superfoods, 1 banana, a couple strawberries, 5 or 6 raspberries and 10 blueberries and whizz with a handblender. Tastes great and will keep you going all morning.

Ultra Meal
My favourite flavour is vanilla and you take 2 scoops in about a pint of water. My naturopath says that it is the same as taking a multi-mineral and multivitamin except that you drink it and it is the equivalent of taking a massive vitamin/mineral pill. I find that this will last me through the morning if I have a rushed morning. Cost is equivalent to a daily latte but much better for your health! You can buy it from Nutri.

Yoghurt, Honey and Oats
I learnt this one from one of my friends. Natural bioyoghurt is best with no sugar, Manuka honey and raw rolled oats (not the readybrek stuff) all mixed together and add chopped banana. It is very quick to make and very filling.


Saturday, July 01, 2006

Solution to stress

I am reading a great book at the moment called "How to stop worrying and start living" by Dale Carnegie. It has made me realise that even if you eat the best food in the world and do all the necessary exercise to be fit and healthy, worry and stress can eat away at you and cause all kinds of damage to your health eg heart disease, diabetes, ulcers etc etc.

So, I am sure this is not news to everyone but some of the solutions so far posed in this book are about living in the present and only thinking about today and rest and relaxation and fun. So this really highlights the need to have fun every day whether that is at work or outside of work but it definitely needs to be a part of our everyday lives.

There is a great quote in the above book I mentioned which I think sums it all up very nicely. Religion could also be interpreted as spirituality in my opinion.

Relaxation and Recreation
The most relaxing and recreating forces are a
healthy religion, sleep, music and laughter.
Have faith in God - learn to sleep well-
Love good music - see the funny side of life-
And health and happiness will be yours.
(taken from "How to Stop Worrying and Start Living" by Dale Carnegie, 1948)

Sunday, June 25, 2006


I have always liked the idea of meditation but it just never works for me. So I have given up and find that the following things work for me instead:

Morning Pages
I have been doing these now for about 18 months. These have changed my life and I feel much calmer and focused on a daily basis. This idea came from Julia Cameron and her great book "The Artist's Way". Each morning as soon as you wake up, you write 3 pages of whatever is going through your mind. She suggests a hardback notebook, ideally 11 by 8 and a half and you can write about what you have to do that day or what you are worried about or who is annoying you. Allow yourself about 15 mins to 30 mins every morning.

Walk in Nature
A lovely 30 minutes walk amongst greenery and listening to the birds sing can really calm the mind. Or if you just sit in the garden and look at the sky, this can be very calming.

Computer Meditation Game
Wild Divine have created 2 computer games which measure your heartrate and perspiration by means of sensors that you place on your fingers. You have to work through the game and can only progress if you are calm. The music is amazing and this really calms you down.

An empty pool and doing a rhythmic swimming stroke with proper breathing can be very calming. I find that breast-stroke works great for me but need to be wearing goggles so that I can get the breathing right and keep the technique good.

Meditation CD
I have this great set of 4 CDs with a guided meditation that I put on when my mind is still racing at the time when I want to go to sleep at night. It is called "Meditation: A Book and CD Gift Set: The Four-Step Course To Calmness and Clarity" by Deb and Ed Shapiro. There are 4 types of guided mediation so you can have a choice of which one suits your mood.

I would love to hear what works for you!

Friday, April 28, 2006

The GIPHN Score - Finally a clear definition for healthy foods

This morning I was reading Seth Godin's "The Big Moo" - this is fantastic book about being remarkable and sticking out from the crowd and is full of golden nuggets on growing your business in a successful way.

So this book inspired me to invent "The GIPHN score" to help us all know what foods are good for our health. GI stands for Glycemic Index, PH stands for "potential of hydrogen" ie how acid or alkaline a food is to the body and N stands for how nutrient-dense the food is.

I plan to add in a chart with the GIPHN score for foods. For example, chocolate would have a very low GIPHN score as although it has a medium GI, it is very acidic and pretty lousy when it comes to nutrients! This helps us be clear when the media tells us about how certain foods are good for us but this info doesn't give us the full picture. An example of a food with a high GIPH score would be juiced celery and apples mixed with supergreens: it is a medium GI, highly alkaline and jam-packed full of nutrients like vitamins and minerals and protein.

Keep posted for more on this subject!