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Health and Wellness, Morning, Noon, and Night

If you’ve ever eaten a salad or taken a walk and felt good about what you’ve done, you’ve already seen a glimpse of the benefits of making healthy decisions. However, in our busy lives, it’s not always easy to put ourselves at the forefront of our thoughts when we rise each morning. But we should.

Armourdale Baptist Church offers today’s tips to help you make healthy decisions every day.

Wake up with gratitude.

If your feet hit the floor in the morning, it’s time to praise God for an opportunity to enjoy another beautiful day. Keep this in mind as you rise, and don’t be shy about showing gratitude to yourself while you sip your morning coffee. A great place to start is to mentally note two positives for every negative in your life.

Evaluate how you feel about your job.

Are you reluctant to go to work each morning? Does your job make you feel like you are not contributing to society? Are you stressed out before you even clock in? If so, it may be time to change. Think about what you’d like to do. If you’ve always been interested in or were previously happy in a position in medical coding, for example, you can take a medical coding course online to help jumpstart a second career or segue back into one you formerly loved. Taking classes online will get you up to speed on current codes and ensure you have the knowledge to identify medical processes and procedures. You will also have a chance to assess your skills to make sure that you can properly service claims and handle paperwork so that you aren’t stressed about not knowing what you’re doing when you start a new job.

Eat a healthy lunch.

Hopefully, you wake up with a healthy breakfast, but you also need fuel in the middle of the day to get you through the afternoon slump. Meal prep a few days ahead of time so that you have plenty of options for healthy lunches. These recipes from Delish can get you started.

Include the kids in your healthy endeavors.

One of the greatest things about being a parent is that you get to involve your children in everything you do. This should also include living a healthy lifestyle. Plan to invest in a few things to help keep your kids healthy and safe. This could be anything from a wagon to pull them around the neighborhood to BPA-free water bottles to take to school. Make sure that you read reviews from trustworthy sites before you buy something blindly online.

Exercise in the afternoons.

Exercise keeps our bodies fit. Fortunately, according to Reuters, you don’t have to dedicate hours at the gym. Clean the house, go for a swim, walk the dog, or do jumping jacks for a quick energy boost that also burns calories. Strive for at least 60 minutes of active time each day.

Pray before bed.

Even when you start your day with gratitude, you’ll want to end it the same way. Pray each night that sleep will help wash away your worries. Crosswalk offers many beautiful suggestions for prayers to end your day.

Create a comfortable sleep atmosphere.

Give yourself the gift of a good night’s sleep by ensuring that your bedroom is a comfortable atmosphere. This can include the right lighting, temperature, and comfortable sheets. You also want to make sure that your bedroom is only used for sleep and intimacy. Watching television, working, and even crafting in the bedroom may keep your mind distracted, which makes it harder to sleep.

Your health is the greatest gift that you’ve been given. It is up to you to ensure that you stay in your best shape morning, noon, and night. Wake up with gratitude, make sure you go into a job you love, exercise, and keep the kids safe. These small steps, as well as the others we’ve mentioned, can help you live your best life, starting with the alarm clock each morning.

Armourdale Baptist Church welcomes visitors for worship services each Sunday at 11 AM. Sunday school starts at 10, so bring the entire family.

Thank you to Camille Johnson, bereaver.com, for this article.

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Marriage in Your Golden Years: The Next Adventure

Getting married in your retirement years comes with many of the same feelings as it did when you were younger, but the considerations and priorities are a bit different. Naturally, you’ll focus a lot of time and energy on building your relationship, but you’ll also need to consider combining multiple households, handling your finances, and navigating plans for the future. Here are some tips, presented by Armourdale Baptist Church.

Set Out on a Joint Adventure

You’ve both had some experience with family and friends, so you’re probably familiar with many of the tips for strengthening your relationship. There are many ways to nurture your new relationship:

  • Typical dating activities, such as getting a cup of coffee or taking a walk, can be enjoyed as a couple or with friends.
  • Plan new adventures, such as traveling and taking classes together.
  • Pick up new hobbies and support each other in pursuing existing talents.
  • Work on family history to become familiar with each other’s personal and extended family.

Some couples have found satisfaction in starting new businesses. Not only does this activity allow you to spend time getting to know each other better, but it may also provide a steady stream of additional income. After retirement, you may not need or want a full-time job, but something flexible that allows you to continue using your skills or challenge you with learning new skills can be very fulfilling.

Determine Where to Call Home

As a couple, you may prefer finding a home that suits your new relationship. Some of the things to consider include how much of your income you want to put into the home, what type of community surrounds the home, and whether the house and yard require a lot of upkeep. Pay attention to details that would make the home more or less comfortable as your lifestyle changes.

Seniors often have different priorities when purchasing a home than young families. For instance, they may be looking for a one-story home to avoid stairs, or a home with fewer bedrooms so they have less space to keep clean. They may also prefer a home that is closer to amenities such as grocery stores and medical facilities.

Carefully consider which type of mortgage works best for your needs. If one of you is a veteran, a VA loan offers low interest rates, and you may not have to put money down. Review the latest VA mortgage rates today to learn more about your options.

Plan for Separate or Combined Finances

According to experts from many different fields, a financial plan is crucial to any successful marriage. Whether you’ve been single for a while or you’ve recently lost a spouse, there will be some adjustments from the way you handled your money and investments before and how you’ll do it now:

  • Create a budget as a couple.
  • Discuss how income, debt, and assets will be handled.
  • Talk to an accountant or financial attorney.
  • Bring your tax filing status up to date.

Your plan should also include changes to your health and dental insurance, life insurance, and long-term care plans. If your insurance coverage includes Medicare, be sure to enroll during the window. Any changes to an existing Medicare arrangement could affect your doctors and coverage.

Getting Help With Home Maintenance

As people age, they often find it more difficult to keep up with the maintenance of their homes. This can be due to a variety of factors, including declining physical strength, reduced mobility, and changes in vision or hearing. As a result, seniors may find it difficult to perform tasks such as mowing the lawn, shoveling snow, or cleaning gutters.

Look to hire services that can help with routine maintenance. For example, if you need your lawn mowed and bushes trimmed, call on a local lawn service. Search “lawn care near me” to find reputable and well-reviewed professionals. Only work with experienced, qualified, and insured contractors.

Map Out Your Future

It’s sometimes more comfortable to avoid talking about long-term care with your loved ones, but you have more control over those decisions when you make them now. With your new spouse, decide how you want future decisions to be made and who will make those decisions. It’s best that this decision is made with, or at least shared with, extended family members. Strongly consider working with an attorney to have the details drawn up in a living will or health care directive.

Marriage is an exciting adventure at any time of life. Spend a little time planning and preparing, so you can fully enjoy this new leg of your journey together.

Thank you to Camille Johnson, bereaver.com, for this article.

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Healthy Lifestyle Tips for Coping With Grief and Loss

Grief can take a lot out of you. When you’re facing the loss of a loved one, it’s difficult to find space in your life for your own needs. But in grief, self-care is more important than ever. Caring for your mental and physical health will give you the energy you need to make it through this difficult period in your life and offer an invaluable source of comfort as you navigate your grieving process. In this article, Armourdale Baptist Church explores a few ways to make your health a priority while grieving.

Make Time to Practice Faith

What’s Your Grief explains that grief can be a confusing experience for those who are religious. Often, people mistakenly believe that grief indicates a loss of faith. Faith communities can offer support and comfort during times of grief, especially if you’re not sure how to experience grief while juggling your faith and spirituality. If you’re not finding support in your personal networks, reach out to people with a similar faith background who have experienced loss.

Create a Peaceful Space for Healing

Does your home facilitate healing? If being in your home makes you feel tense or stressed, it might be hard to cope with your grief and make space for healthy habits in your life. Create a peaceful home environment that comforts and nourishes you in this difficult time. Decluttering and reorganizing can help relieve stress. Opening the shades to let natural light into your space can help ease feelings of depression. And bringing nature into your home in the form of potted plants can further improve your mood. Refreshing your home environment can also serve as a valuable mental distraction when you’re learning to cope with a loss.

Take Steps to Relieve Stress

Grief triggers a variety of health-damaging effects, many of which are related to chronic stress. People experience stress in grief for a number of reasons. Stress may result from facing intense emotions, adjusting to a new life, navigating internal conflict, the strain on your interpersonal relationships, or the pressure to move on. Try out some stress management techniques to alleviate stress and help your body heal. For example, if you can recognize your stress triggers, you can take action to manage stress proactively.

Exercise However You Can

Exercising can make the grieving process much easier. Physical activity releases hormones like endorphins and dopamine that help to relieve stress and boost your mood. At the same time, exercising can help you sleep better, think more clearly, engage socially, and gain back some sense of control over your life.

Of course, finding the motivation to exercise in grief can be tough. Livestrong.com suggests going easy on yourself and committing to just 5 or 10 minutes of movement, like a morning walk around the block. Importantly, keep your expectations realistic. Exercise won’t completely dissolve your grief, but it can definitely help!

Make a Plan to Manage Insomnia

During grief, it’s not uncommon to feel tired all day but have trouble falling asleep at night. Sleep deprivation will only worsen your experience of grief and make it harder to cope with difficult emotions. Look for ways to combat sleeplessness. For example, you can try sticking to a consistent bedtime or exposing yourself to morning sunlight. These tricks work to regulate your body’s sleep-wake cycle. A calming bedtime routine can further encourage relaxation in the evenings and help clear the mind before sleep.

The loss of a loved one is well known as life’s most stressful event. All this stress can be traumatic for your body as well as your brain, so it’s important to maintain healthy habits as much as possible. Get outside, go for a walk, and connect with members of your local church. These seemingly small actions can have a significant effect on your well-being.

Are you looking for a church in Kansas City? Join us at Armourdale Baptist Church! Contact us to learn more or make an appointment with the pastor. Call 913-371-6476

Thank you to Camille Johnson, bereaver.com, for this article.

Seniors, Going to Church Can Actually Make You Healthier, Live Longer and Feel Better

Going to church provides more than a purely religious experience. Numerous studies and reports indicate that for seniors, regular church attendance actually improves physical and mental health. It can sharpen focus, provide a support system and combat depression that is common with old age. In many ways, regular church attendance can help seniors feel better and live longer.

How is Church Healthy?

Research shows that those who go to church receive many benefits. People who attend church regularly become members of a community. Church provides opportunities to socialize, and it offers help for members who are ill, depressed, financially struggling or feeling physically weak. Those who attend services tend to feel less lonely, and get the emotional support they need. Being a member of the group can also help older adults feel a sense of purpose. All of this helps treat depression, which can be detrimental to both physical and mental health.

Depression affects a large number of aging and elderly people, which can lead to isolation, substance abuse and poor health. Going to regular services, however, can combat these symptoms and prevent depression in older people. Church offers structure; it gives older people something to do and something to look forward to on a regular basis.

Living Longer

Multiple studies regarding religious service attendance show that those who go to church regularly are physically healthier, but that’s not all. Evidence suggests that regular attendance can actually help people live longer. One 10-year study looked at data on almost 75,000 women, and found that regular churchgoers had lower risk of death than those who did not attend services, either regularly or semi-regularly.

Opportunities for Physical Activity

Many churches offer senior activities that are specific to getting regular exercise, whether it’s through indoor walking groups, church-hosted classes for aerobics or yoga or other types of recreation. And in addition to the social aspect, having the opportunity to enjoy fitness through community can lead to more accountability for seniors who need to be more active.

Mental Health

According to the National Institutes of Health, going to regular religious services leads to better mental health among older people. Findings from the Religion, Aging, and Health Survey, conducted in 2001 and 2004, show that both men and women who attend these services have better mental health than those who do not. The survey focused specifically on Americans aged 66 to 95, and the data shows much higher levels of mental health and stability among regular attendees, compared to those who did not go to services regularly or at all.

Mindfulness for Seniors

Yoga, meditation and similar exercises are commonly thought of as being only for the young, but more churches, nursing homes and elder care services are turning to mindfulness to help seniors become physically and mentally healthier. Seniors can practice the mental focus, deep breathing and light stretching association with mindfulness to reap the benefits. Light stretching exercises help keep muscles flexible and strong, and deep breathing can keep the entire respiratory system healthier and breathing muscles stronger. Meditation, which teaches focus, helps seniors take their minds away from aches and pains, worries and sad thoughts.

Be Mindful of Going to Church

Mindfulness teaches people to be present, which can improve mental clarity and keeps them rooted in the here and now. Seniors tend to think about the past, and some want to live in the past. But this isn’t possible. Mindfulness reminds aging people to pay attention to the right now, and church keeps them rooted in the moment and in the world around them, all of which can lead to a healthier, happier and fuller life.

Thank you to Jason Lewis, strongwell.org, for this article.