Glen Alex, Las Vegas, NV: How Poor Boundaries Inhibit Mental Wellness Blog

How Poor Boundaries Inhibit Mental Wellness

The Foundation of Mental Wellness

Healthy boundaries are the foundation of mental wellness. Boundaries are your innate, personal alarm system that is necessary for you to properly develop as a unique individual and for you to protect yourself from harm. You are designed to be and share who you truly are, expressing the special gift you were born with. There are many harmful forces in the world and your boundaries defend you against them. As such, healthy boundaries form the line where what you will and will not tolerate meet. Poor boundaries do not facilitate individuality or safety and inhibit mental wellness.

What is Mental Wellness?

How well your thoughts, emotions, and actions align with reality defines how mentally well you are. When what you think, when your emotional responsiveness, and when your behavior (choices) are in one accord with the way the world actually functions, not how you believe it should be, then your level of mental wellness will be high. The more attuned you are to reality, its pleasantries as well as its harshness, then the more healthy and realistic your existence is. You handle life’s ups and downs relatively well…going with the flow, learning as you go.

Mental wellness also involves being able to recognize your strengths and build upon them, to cope with life’s challenges and still experience joy, and to contribute to society via productive and meaningful works.

Healthy Boundaries Meet Mental Wellness
Healthy boundaries are based in reality. What is, not what was nor what if. Those who are stuck in the past or dwell on the future fare less well in the present and experience excessive disappointment, anger, anxiety, depression, and weakened self-confidence. The clarity in healthy boundaries promotes overall health and happiness and is directly linked to mental wellness.

Common Unhealthy Boundaries

Let’s look at examples of common unhealthy boundaries and how they impact mental wellness. Three common poor boundaries are unrealistic expectations, overcommitting, and oversharing.

Unrealistic Expectations
Perhaps the most underrated boundary is the mental boundary, which is about agreements. An agreement occurs when two or more people decide together how things will go—a business deal, a relationship, an event. This agreement provides a cooperative understanding between the individuals involved. Each person knows what to expect, realistically.

Alternatively, no agreement exists when one person assumes what another person will do, imposing an unrealistic and unspoken expectation on him or her. There is no conversation nor any communication about what the assumer wants. This unrealistic expectation sets the other person up to fail because he or she does not read minds and are therefore unable to give the assumer what s/he wishes for.

Unspoken and unrealistic expectations kill relationships. More than that, they lead the one who silently hopes for a specific outcome and who assumes the other person will deliver it to doubt their own worth. After all if they were important enough, then they would get what they want from the other person automatically. When the assumer does not get their way, then they may get angry or depressed and have unrealistic thoughts like I’m unlovable, Why doesn’t s/he love me?, What’s wrong with me?, I’m not good enough.

Unrealistic Commitments
Most people believe that boundaries are only about saying no. Though not true in all situations, saying no is definitely required to set healthy limits when appropriate. Life itself naturally imposes challenges and stress. Voluntarily compounding normal stress with overcommitting creates other issues. The unwillingness to decline requests and refuse to add to your already full plate leads to overwhelm, guilt, and low self-esteem.

The overwhelm produced by not communicating no, your line in the sand, when appropriate is ripe with a loss of control, which is laden with anxiety because you stress about getting it all done, knowing that you can’t do it all. And because you can’t do it all, you fail to follow through on promises which triggers guilt, damages your credibility, and wears you out.

Unrealistic Sharing
Do you or anyone you know think of themselves as “an open book”? Those who do tend to believe that sharing is caring, that by telling all about themselves they are engendering closeness, connection with others. I have met people who disclosed their most intimate secrets and desires within a few minutes of meeting me. Oversharing is off-putting to those with healthy boundaries. To those with poor boundaries, your oversharing is a way in to manipulate, to deceive, to get a way in for the sole purpose of getting what they want from you.

Oversharing is not caring. It communicates vulnerability, gullibility, and personal weakness to some. Those with poor boundaries are attracted to you because you give them all the information they need to take advantage of you. Abusers gain intel on how to worm their way in from your oversharing (telling too much). They use who you are against you to get what they want—sex, money, favors, etc.

The consequences of oversharing and being taken advantage of are hurt, anger, anxiety, stress, low self-esteem, and/or depression.

Poor boundaries are harmful to your mental health. They make you vulnerable to dangerous forces in life and heap unnecessary stress upon you. Unrealistic expectations, overcommitting, and oversharing are a few examples of unhealthy boundaries. Some consequences of unhealthy boundaries include anxiety, depression, anger, and poor self-esteem.

Mental wellness is measured by a person’s connection to reality, to what is. Healthy boundaries are directly connected with mental wellness because they are based in reality. Your clarity about what you will and will not tolerate and making that line clear to others will offer you peace of mind, less stress, and enhance your mental wellness.

Assess your boundary health with Glen’s Boundaries Questionnaire.
Simply subscribe to receive it for free. Also visit glenalex.com for information on Glen’s self-paced course, Healthy Boundaries for Overwhelmed Women.

Water Matters. Here’s Why and How to Drink More.

Why Water = Life

I drink to live. Water that is. The most important nutrient for humans, for life and health, is water. Wonder what makes water so important? It’s because without H2O, you die. Unlike other nutrients, water is essential for most bodily functions. So while skimping on vitamin d or magnesium, for example, can cause health complications, you will still live. The human body, on the other hand, dies in a few days (how many days varies person to person) without the intake of water.

“Water truly is the elixir of life.”

Dr. Myron Wentz, The Healthy Home

How Water Impacts Health

In addition to sustaining life, water is necessary for overall health. Your body weight is at least 50% water, which needs to be replenished for your organs and systems to work properly. Without enough of this must-have element, just a few of the conditions you can experience are:

• Constipation
• Dry skin
• Low energy, fatigue
• Stiff or painful joints
• High blood pressure
• Hormone imbalances
• Muscle cramps
• Other negative symptoms

Unlike other nutrients, water is essential
for most bodily functions.

 

What is Hydration?

Another unhealthy condition brought on by consuming too little water is dehydration. When the body is deprived of H2O, it basically dries out and overheats. Water gets expelled by normal body processes like elimination, sweating, and breathing. And physical activities, such as exercise and sports, add to the depletion. Thus, water is absolutely necessary to control your core temperature and must be replenished. Please note that hydration involves electrolytes as well as water.

Water Matters: Glen Alex, Author, Coach, Las Vegas, NV

How Much Water is Enough?

You’ve probably heard that we should drink 8 8oz glasses of water/day. Well, turns out that there is no real scientific data to back that declaration. Larry Kenney, PhD said, “There is no scientific evidence whatsoever for that rule.” And according to Mayo Clinic, “No single formula fits everyone.” The amount of water needed depends upon individual factors like overall health, weight, where you live, and activity level. One of the most effective ways to measure your level of hydration is with the color of your urine. Dark urine indicates that your body needs more water.

3 Simple Ways to Get Enough Water

For guidance in understanding how much water you need to consume for adequate hydration, consult your primary healthcare provider or a certified/licensed nutrition. Until then, follow these simple, easy to implement tips for getting enough water.

  1. Drink enough to urinate every 2-4 hours
    –recommended by Nancy Clark, Registered Dietician and Sports Nutritionist
  2. Drink enough to make your urine a light yellow; dark urine is a sign of dehydration and may indicate the need for medical attention
  3. Drink with CLASS, my method for consuming enough water

Color: monitor the color of your urine to know when to drink more (or less)
Liquids: consume tea, fruit, soup or other foods and beverages that contain water
Activity: increase your water intake when physically active, stressed, drink alcohol
Savor: make water tasty by adding fruit or low glycemic drink mixes
Sip: no need to chug; instead, take in small amounts throughout your day

Water is the most important nutrient for life and health. Without enough, your body and mind suffer, unnecessarily I might add. There are many easy ways to get enough water into your body. Feel free to follow my simple CLASS method. I drink to live. Will you?

Create Your Best Health 2021

Living In Total Health is Your Total Wellness Guide for physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual health.

Timeless Health Information, Insights

Living In Total Health discusses nutrition and physical wellness, vital elements in total health. Living In Total Health provides timeless information and insights for you to develop and maintain healthy nutritional habits. Living In total Health is a great gift for self and loved ones.

An Easy Read on Health Essentials

Your total wellness guide, Living In Total Health, covers essentials for Physical, Mental, Emotional, and Spiritual health. Presented in an easy, quick-read style it is packed with valuable, practical health wisdom that can be immediately applied to help make 2021 your best, most healthy year ever!

2021 Special Limited Offer
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Buy a copy of Living In Total Health, Get a free Health & Wellness coaching session with Glen.

Included:
• 1 new, attractive hard cover copy of Living in Total Health from our Amazon Distributor,  Bookch148 

• Free 30 minute consultation with Glen (provide a copy of your receipt from Bookch148 to schedule)
• $24.95 + tax (and applicable shipping charges for non-members of Prime)

Click to Order from Bookch148

Glen Alex, author of Living In Total Health, Las Vegas, NV
Sleep Hygiene

The Beauty of Sleep

Know when I feel the most beautiful? It is after a good night’s sleep. I awaken refreshed, with natural energy, with clarity, and with springs in my step. Being fully engaged in life because I slept well brings me joy. And what is more beautiful than joy?

Joy is an expression of our direct connection with the Creator, with God. So deep, restorative sleep for me is “the best thing since sliced bread!” I have made this statement many, many times over the years. Just as important as the direct connection, restorative sleep also improves overall health.

Sleep Hygiene

“Adequate rest provides a sense of strength, awareness, and focus.
Proper rest is also beneficial in maintaining and improving health because it provides
the wise body space to heal and the opportunity to add quality to life.
Good rest involves deep restorative sleep and downtime, which can include
meditation or just sitting quietly and allowing stillness to take hold.”

–Glen Alex, Living In Total Health

 

Effects of Poor Sleep

On the contrary, without good sleep I drag myself through the day while attempting to appear ‘with it’ despite my fuzzy thinking. And at times, nervous energy (anxiety) emerges from sleep deprivation. There are many other negative consequences of poor sleep. Here are just a few:

    • Poor sleep raises inflammation levels in women
    • Sleep deprivation in children resembles symptoms of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
    • The brain is unable to detox, as it normally removes neurological waste during sleep
    • Increased risk for high blood pressure, diabetes, and weakened immune system
    • Weight gain

Choosing Sleep

Lifestyle and habitual actions definitely impact sleep. Do you burn the candle at both ends? Are you of the mindset that you will ‘sleep when you’re dead’? Do you sacrifice sleep to do something only to please someone else? If yes to either question, then you can choose your lifestyle to allow for better, deeper sleep so you can function better and feel beautiful.

Use my REST UP method below to improve your sleep patterns. These tips are designed to prepare your mind and body for rest. Visit glenalex.com for more information. If you continue to experience sleep disturbance or deprivation, then please see your primary healthcare provider for an evaluation and treatment, if necessary.

 

Routine: Develop habits to perform as bedtime nears

–Some people relax after a warm bath or shower to deepen sleep

 

Exercise: Physical activity helps relieve the body of excess energy

–Regular exercise helps overall; some relax after yoga or a lite workout 1-2 hours before bedtime

 

Schedule: Have a regular sleep/wake schedule

–I plan to be in bed about the same time every night, and make sure my to-do’s are done before my winddown

 

Tech Off: Eliminate the use of technology in bed, it’s stimulating and promotes awakeness

–Do Not Disturb is set on my phone at 9pm so I am not tempted to answer it

 

Unwind: The winddown – after routine and tech off, settle in

–After stimulations end, I still need time to drift off to sleep and this is part of my schedule

 

Practices: Meditation, journaling, reading inspirational materials are powerful practices for many

–These practices are helpful as part of your sleep routine and throughout your day

 

Feel Beautiful with Sleep

Sleep is so very important to overall health. Deep, restorative sleep triggers your innate healing abilities and brings balance, mental clarity, natural energy, and joy to your existence. So make lifestyle choices that allow you to sleep well to be healthy and to feel beautiful.

Create Your Best Health in 2021

Discover how you can sleep well with Living In Total Health, Your Total Wellness Guide.

Timeless, Comprehensive, Health Information and Insights

Living In Total Health’s chapter, Resting Well,  addresses the importance of sleep to total health. Living In Total Health provides timeless information and insights for you to develop and maintain healthy sleep hygiene.

Living In total Health is a great gift for self and loved ones.

An Easy Read Delivering Indispensable Information on Health Essentials

Your total wellness guide, Living In Total Health, covers essentials for Physical, Mental, Emotional, and Spiritual health. Presented in an easy, quick-read style it is packed with valuable, practical health wisdom that can be immediately applied to help make 2021 your best, most healthy year ever!

2021 COACHING SPECIAL

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Included:

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  2. Free 30 minute consultation with Glen
  3. $24.95 + tax + applicable shipping charges
  4. Must provide a copy of your receipt to schedule, purchase must be a new copy from Glen’s Amazon distributor
    Bookch148 ONLY

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Love is in the Doing | Blog | Glen Alex | Clinical Social Work Therapist LCSW | Author | Glen Alex Show Host | Las Vegas, Nevada

Love is in the Doing

If you think love is just a feeling, think again. Stephen Covey nailed it when he said, “Love is a verb.” Most humans are so deeply confused about this truth. When I posted his quote on my social media wall, a friend immediately disagreed. She replied to correct me with an official dictionary definition stating that love is a noun—a person, place, or thing. Imagine her surprise when I explained what Mr. Covey meant, that love is action.

Love is action.

Love is Feeling in Motion

Going beyond the basic interpretation of love as a feeling his book, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, Covey describes love as feeling in motion. Too many people need to experience warm fuzzies, excitement, or even sexual impulses toward another person in order to believe they are “in love” romantically. However, the opposite is the true. It is acts of love that produce the sensations associated with love. This is true in romance and other types of relationships too.

Think of why you love someone. Is your love for them based upon what they do for you? …because they are giving, because they do certain things for you, because they listen to you. You love them because of their actions, what they do in your relationship.

Now think of a complaint you have about a loved one. Is it about something they no longer do for or with you? Perhaps they don’t call to say hi anymore. It could be that they stopped cooking or cleaning. Or maybe they no longer spend quality time with you.

Caring Behaviors

These acts of love are called caring behaviors, small acts of kindness. They are easy to perform when that ‘loving feeling’ is present. When it is not, caring behaviors tend to become less frequent or stop altogether.

You may believe that you have to feel love in order to execute a caring behavior. You don’t. It’s actually the other way around. The feeling of love is kindled by caring behaviors, the actions that make love a verb.

“…maybe the feelings are dwindling precisely because you’re not doing all the little things [you] used to do to nurture your partner and the relationship.”

–Barbara Markway Ph.D., Clinical Psychologist

If you want to feel excitement and warm fuzzies about your relationship, then do something you know your partner enjoys. Because they enjoy it. Your actions will trigger your love connection and show your partner that they are important to you.

Your actions will trigger your love connection.

How to get that ‘loving feeling’ back with LCD

Follow these 3 simple LCD steps to get back to love:

List:

Make a list of acts you know your partner likes. List everything you can think of, no
matter how small or silly they seem. Remember that caring behaviors are small acts of
kindness so your gestures need not be grand.

Commit:

Commit to performing your caring behaviors consistently—daily, weekly, special occasions, etc.

Do:

Act. Perform the caring behaviors even if you don’t ‘feel it’.

Want to feel love again? Then take action with LCD. Love is in the doing.

Create Your Best Health 2021

Tap into your innate ability to love authentically with Living In Total Health, Your Total Wellness Guide.

Timeless, Comprehensive Health Information and Insights

Living In Total Health discusses healthy relationships, a vital element in total health. Living In Total Health provides timeless information and insights for you to develop and maintain healthy relationships. Living In total Health is a great gift for self and loved ones.

An Easy Read Delivering Indispensable Information on Health Essentials

Your total wellness guide, Living In Total Health, covers essentials for Physical, Mental, Emotional, and Spiritual health. Presented in an easy, quick-read style it is packed with valuable, practical health wisdom that can be immediately applied to help make 2021 your best, most healthy year ever!

2021 Special Limited Offer

Buy a copy of Living In Total Health and Get a free Health & Wellness coaching session with Glen.

Included:

    • 1 new, attractive hard cover copy of Living in Total Health from Bookch148, our Amazon Distributor
    • Free 30 minute consultation with Glen (must provide a copy of your receipt from Bookch148 to schedule)
    • $24.95 + tax (and applicable shipping charges for non-members of Prime)

Click to Order Living in Total Health from Amazon

2021: Your Year of Resilience | Blog | Glen Alex | Clinical Social Work Therapist LCSW | Author | Glen Alex Show Host | Las Vegas, Nevada

2021: Your Year of Resilience

YIPPEE! 2020, the most horrific year the world has experienced, is over. Many of us are breathing a sigh of relief from the repeated traumas inflicted by the virus, by deaths due to abuses of power, by the creation and exacerbation of mental health issues, by increased domestic violence and suicides, and by the economic devastation of the shutdowns.

How were you affected in 2020?

2020: Let’s Not Repeat This History

Although we are happy that 2020 is history, it is a history we must be mindful to not repeat. It’s so easy to wish for something negative to go away or to get out of a painful situation like a bully boss or troubling neighbor or living with overbearing parents. When you wish, hope, and long for the absence of some problem without consciously intending or visualizing a more loving, more joyful, more meaningful experience, you actually invite in more of what you wish away. And that is how history is repeated.

Resilience Creates New Beginnings

The best way to create a new beginning instead of repeating the past is with resilience. It is so much more than getting away from unpleasantness. Simply wishing for 2020 to go away is not effective in moving toward a more positive, loving, and joyous experience of life. More than wishful thinking is required from each of us to move forward.

“[Resilience] is bouncing back and rising to a level higher than that prior to the issue. This malleability is about thriving, not just surviving.”

–Living In Total Health by Glen Alex

You Are Resilient

You have the capability to be resilient. It’s innate. And when you tap into it, you transcend your pain and trauma to move toward thrive. Even in response to the depression, anxiety, and stress evoked by 2020 events. Your resilience enables you to engage in life more fully, to experience successes and challenges and joys and love.

“Resilient people turn the tragic into a learning experience. They collect valuable information from their suffering so they may live better, be better, and move on and upward.”

–Living In Total Health by Glen Alex

In order to transform tragedy to triumph, being present to make decisions based on real-time information is an essential requirement of resilience.

Use ACASH to be Present and to Tap into Your Innate Resilience

You are naturally resilient. Here are a few tips for tapping into this innate skill set.

Acceptance

Instead of denying or avoiding the reality of your situation, acknowledge it. Ignoring the physical, mental, emotional, or spiritual pain imposed by 2020, or any tragedy for that matter, only amplifies it rather than make it go away. Avoidance does not work longterm and is not healthy. Admitting to yourself that you are in debt, are struggling to provide for your or your family’s basic needs, or have to close the business that you worked hard to establish is a crucial step in achieving mental and emotional stability enough to move forward.

Acceptance is not failure nor is it an indictment of your character. Rather, you simply see what is as it is.

Control

Many depression and anxiety issues arise from lack of control. Depression involves looking backward in a way that either glorifies or laments the past while anxiety is about fear of what’s to come, which is gloomy and scary. Both depression and anxiety are about being out of control. However, you can’t control the past or the future. Your only power and control is in the here and now. So it is imperative to recognize that your control is in the present moment and focus each day on what you do control.

Though this may seem elementary, focusing on these elements of control are empowering and will enhance your mental and emotional health:

Make a list of what you do control

o What you eat and consume

o What activities you engage in

o What TV programs and movies you watch

o Who and what you listen to

o What you read

o The organization of your living space

Be Present

  • Engage in a mindfulness practice like meditation or Glen’s Gratitude Gaze (see November 2020 Gratitude blog)

Activity

You can still be active even though gyms may be closed and group activities cancelled. Available choices for moving your body to increase circulation, to expend nervous/anxious energy, and to retard depression include:

    • Mask up and walk/jog/hike a trail where permitted
    • Walk/run up and down the stairs in your home or building
    • Engage in free workouts on YouTube or other online sources
    • Dance to your favorite music
    • Sing along to your favorite songs
    • Work out in a park within safety protocols

Seek Help

Asking for help is a sign of strength, not weakness. There is no shame in needing assistance, we all do from time to time. More than that, you cannot use the same mindset and behaviors that created your distress to resolve it. Keeping to yourself maintains or intensifies the negative patterns that led to your anguish. Therefore, getting input from someone who cares about your wellbeing can improve your outlook and open you up to a new and constructive mindset. And there are many virtual platforms available to receive therapy as well as free hotlines to speak with someone anonymously.

Help Others

Even during times of economic upheaval, you still can help those less fortunate. Sadly, there is always someone struggling more than you…foster children, displaced abused women and children, veterans with mental health issues, those homeless. Donating goods and clothing in good condition is very helpful to those in need. So find a 501(c)(3) charity that speaks to you or connect with someone you know personally and give away what you no longer need.

Resolve to Thrive

You have the natural ability to recover from the traumas of 2020. So set yourself up to thrive in 2021 by tapping into your propensity for resilience with ACASH—Acceptance, Control, Activity, Seek Help, Help Others. Doing so reconnects you to the present moment which empowers you to make real-time, conscious choices to restore your control and lead you to thrive in 2021.

“…to transform tragedy to triumph, being present to make decisions based on real-time information is an essential requirement of resilience.”

Create Your Best Health in 2021

Tap into your innate capability to be resilient with Living In Total Health, Your Total Wellness Guide

Timeless, Comprehensive Health Information and Insights

Living In Total Health discusses the components of resilience, a vital element in total health. Living In Total Health provides timeless information and insights for you to pave your way to total health and to be resilient. Living In total Health is a great gift for self and loved ones.

An Easy Read Delivering Indispensable Information on Health Essentials

Your total wellness guide, Living In Total Health, covers essentials for Physical, Mental, Emotional, and Spiritual health. Presented in an easy, quick-read style it is packed with valuable, practical health wisdom that can be immediately applied to help make 2021 your best, most healthy year ever!

2021 Special Limited Offer

Buy a copy of Living In Total Health and Get a free Health & Wellness coaching session with Glen.

Included:

    • 1 new, attractive hard cover copy of Living in Total Health from Amazon Distributor Bookch148
    • Free 30 minute consultation with Glen (provide a copy of your receipt from Bookch148 to schedule)
    • $24.95 + tax (and applicable shipping charges for non-members of Prime)

Order Now

How to Give Realistically | Blog | Glen Alex | Clinical Social Work Therapist LCSW | Author | Glen Alex Show Host | Las Vegas, Nevada

How to Give Realistically and Authentically

Well, it’s here…the season of giving. This time of year, the fall holiday season, the collective focus is on buying gifts for others and expecting gifts in return, a retail fest for sure. And much to my chagrin, the act of sharing our blessings is relegated to one month and materialistic exchanges. Giving, as with gratitude, is a daily/regular/ongoing activity that connects you to your higher self, to your Creator, and to humanity.

My plea is that we reframe the typical gift-giving approach to giving gifts from the heart, that we be the reason for someone else to have hope of a better existence in this season.

How can I give when I’ve lost so much?

If you’re asking yourself this question, then you are not alone. Millions of people have suffered massive financial losses due to the effects of the pandemic. Fortune.com estimated that at least 100,000 businesses have closed so far this year. Stimulus packages were underwhelming. Extended unemployment benefits didn’t go very far. Too many have experienced the devastation of personal economics in addition to the mental and emotional anguish of 2020.

That doesn’t leave you with much to manage the necessities of your life—paying bills, buying food, putting gas in the car. Struggling to survive, what do you have left over to give away? “Nothing” may pop into your mind as the answer. A completely valid response. If you consider lost income plus uncertainty plus 2020 angst, any other response seems fantastical or Pollyannaish.

You still can be the Reason someone has Hope

Hold on, please. Even with the turmoil of this year, you still can be the reason in this season by giving realistically and authentically. You don’t have a lot of money or material resources? No worries. Gifts from the heart do not require expensive material things. Your heart has an abundance of love and limitless joy just waiting to be shared. Here is how to tap into your heart to give what you can and with love so you can be the reason for someone to see possibilities and a thriving future.

Gifts from the heart don’t require expensive material things.

It’s the Thought that Counts in Heart-Centered Giving

It really is the thought that counts. Rather, the intent. When you give from your heart, especially something meaningful to the recipient, you expand your consciousness and sphere of energetic influence. The amount of money you spend on a gift is irrelevant in matters of the heart. Your loving intention for giving is invaluable and cannot be measured in dollars and cents. The value of your heart-centered gift is appraised by the Spirit.

Why do you give?

How to Give Realistically and Authentically with Gifts from the Heart

Here are 5 simple, free, and powerful gifts you can give to loved ones this giving season.

1. Prayer

An amazing and effective means of bestowing love upon another human being is to pray for them. Perhaps you know someone suffering physically or someone who has lost more than you. Whatever their situation, praying for them is a gift that transcends materialism and directly touches their soul.

2. Smile

There are very few things in life that warm the heart more than a genuine smile. The gift of a smile is so positively impactful that is can be detected even behind a mask because the eyes smile too.

3. Note – Thinking of You

A simple note to say “I’m thinking about you”, “you’re on my mind” is oh so powerful. Your note communicates that you care, that the recipient is not forgotten, and that they matter. You can send this message via a greeting card, a handwritten note, in a text, or in an email.

4. Positive Regard and Attention

Sometimes all we need is to just experience acceptance of our humanity above anything else. Holding a space of positive regard for another person and seeing the best in them is very loving. Perceiving the person behind the facade of personality can open the door for that person to step into their own Truth.

5. Cash or Material Item

Material items in good condition are demonstrations of love as well. Perhaps your gently used coat is needed by someone who can’t afford to buy one this winter. And by all means, if you can afford to give something material then do so. Money to those struggling to pay bills and gift cards to buy necessities can be very helpful expressions of love.

Every dark cloud contains a silver lining. Every challenge cradles opportunity. So current psychological and economic hardships need not thwart you opening your heart and sharing authentic love. Even with 2020 losses, you still have something of immense value to give. And you need not buy anything because grandiosity is not synonymous with love. You can give the gift of love freely and at no cost.

Give from your heart and be the reason in the season for someone to have hope of a better life.

Give from Your Heart by Living In Total Health, Your Total Wellness Guide

Timeless, Comprehensive Health Information and Insights

Living In Total Health can help you give from your heart and achieve total health. Living In Total Health provides timeless information and insights for you to pave your way to total health and give from your heart. Living In total Health is a great gift for self and loved ones.

An Easy Read Delivering Vital Information on Health Essentials

Your total wellness guide, Living In Total Health, covers essentials for Physical, Mental, Emotional, and Spiritual health. Presented in an easy, quick-read style it is packed with valuable, practical health wisdom that can be immediately applied to help make 2021 your best, most healthy year ever!

For Beginners and Seasoned Health Advocates

Whether you are starting a health improvement program for the very first time or you have years of personal health improvement experience, Living in Total Health is bound to offer new, valuable help in your quest to attain your optimal health.

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Gratitude is Key to Health | Blog | Glen Alex | Clinical Social Work Therapist LCSW | Author | Glen Alex Show Host | Las Vegas, Nevada

Gratitude is Key to Health

For most people, gratitude is about giving thanks for possessions and blessings. For some other people, gratitude is a deeply spiritual experience in which they feel connected with God. And still others invoke gratefulness when something special happens. No matter how gratitude manifests in your life, know that being in a state of gratefulness can be tapped into at any time, even during difficulties. Even in 2020. And during this most traumatic year, gratitude continues to be key to health. There are significant physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual health benefits attained from being grateful. When in the state of gratefulness, your total health is enhanced.

How do you manifest gratitude in your life?

Gratitude Brings Better Health

Mentally, being thankful repels negative thinking, depression, and anxiety. It is impossible to be sad or fearful or gloomy and grateful at the same time. Emotionally, gratitude is a natural high. The brain releases oxytocin, dopamine, and serotonin during the state of gratefulness. These feel good chemicals may also be responsible for improved physical symptoms. “Benefits associated with gratitude include better sleep, more exercise, reduced symptoms of physical pain, lower levels of inflammation, lower blood pressure and a host of other things we associate with better health,” said Glenn Fox.

“As gratitude grows, negativity goes.”
–Glen Alex

Gratitude and Spirit

Let me interject here that gratitude is much more profound than just saying “thank you”. It is a deep level of appreciation that puts you directly in touch with something greater than self. This is the spiritual aspect of gratitude. Spirituality for me is all about connection to God, to The Creator, to all there is. The state of gratefulness deepens your connection to self, to loved ones, to community, and ultimately to humanity. Gratefulness resonates at your core and is connective tissue to all there is.

It is impossible to be sad or fearful or gloomy and grateful at the same time.

3 Quick Tips to Gratitude

  1. Gratitude Gaze: Look around the room you are in. Select three objects you like. While gazing at them, think of how they add to your world and say “thank you”. For example, I am grateful for my sofa because it provides comfort for my refreshing naps.
  2. Gratitude journal: daily record what you are grateful for—family, lessons, finances, work, etc. For example, I am grateful for my health, my income, specific loved ones.
  3. Reframe Game
    • List the 3 negative terms you use the most.
      –For example, I don’t have…, My life sucks, I can’t.
    • Reframe them to express gratitude (generally the opposite).
      –For example: I have enough, I am happy to be alive, I am thankful for my abilities.
    • Rehearse (practice)

The state of gratefulness deepens your connection to self, to loved ones, to community, and ultimately to humanity.

Living In Total Health with Gratitude

Humans are blessed with the ability to choose. Each of us has the power to control our own thoughts and attention. I encourage you to exercise your ability to redirect your focus toward the beneficial. Even in 2020. Though society is still unsettled and uncertainty still on the horizon, you can experience and express gratitude. Your life, your family, your health, your ability to walk and talk, your ability to think, your breath are worthy of gratitude. Your overall health will be enhanced when you are in a state of gratefulness. And the more you express gratitude, the more you will have to be grateful for and have more experiences in which you are joyful, connected, confident, and complete.

Your Total Wellness Guide

Living In Total Health can help you live in gratitude and achieve total health. Living In Total Health provides timeless information and insights for you to pave your way to total health and gratitude. Living In total Health is a great gift for self and loved ones.

Whether you are starting a health improvement program for the very first time or you have years of personal health improvement experience, Living in Total Health is bound to offer new, valuable help in your quest to attain your optimal health.

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People in Pain | Blog | Glen Alex | Clinical Social Work Therapist LCSW | Author | Glen Alex Show Host | Las Vegas, Nevada

People In Pain

“People in pain hurt other people.” Susan L. Taylor’s words resonated with me when I watched her voice them years ago. It is true. Those who are suffering and unable or unwilling to cope hurt others. Many abusers were themselves abused. People who carry anger lash out. Those who are fearful can be controlling. So yes, it is wise to identify who they are and distance yourself. Susan also nailed it when she said, “Not everyone deserves a front row seat in your life.”

You see, you can love and have compassion for someone at arm’s length. They do not need to be in your home or in your head for you to respect their humanity.

The energy of your intention for them spans time and space and transcends the ego. So there is no need to put yourself in harm’s way to prove you care about someone.

Even in pain, physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually healthy people do not seek to harm. Imagine Mother Teresa flying a plane into a World Trade Center tower. Can you see Mahatma Gandhi opening fire on concert-goers from a Vegas strip hotel? How about Martin Luther King, Jr. as a serial killer? You can’t connect these individuals to such horrors, can you? I submit to you that while Mother Teresa, Gandhi, and MLK had their human flaws, they had enough balance in their lives to spread hope rather than usurp it like the actual perpetrators of human depravity have.

Balance is the key. You know that. This knowing is not new. Yet this eternal truth needs to be reiterated with regularity in our world that is currently experiencing frequently intense waves of fear, hatred, division, and mass terror. Balance is the key. Balance.

Living In Total Health is about integrating all aspects of you, a whole being, to achieve the highest level of health and to achieve the strongest base of balance possible. It is not about being perfectly healthy nor is it about weight or body shape. Being human entails fluctuations in health, happiness, harmony, strength, relationships, focus, etc. It is the integration of physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual health, however, that creates equanimity and provides us the strength to weather and persevere through the storms of life, and endure with a functional level of equilibrium.

Stuff happens. Life throws curve balls. So tap in to your True self, your whole self, to utilize your innate ability to balance pain with joy, darkness with the light, the good with the bad. Then you will intuitively discern who to give your precious time and attention to and who to love from afar.

The total wellness guide, Living In Total Health, is your ticket to get off the popular myopic rollercoasters which propose that health is only about diet and exercise. True health is about the whole person and the balance between the physical, the mental, the emotional, and the spiritual aspects of self. Pursue total health and you will gain peace and calm that leads to better self-awareness, self-confidence, relationships, fitness, connection, and balance. You will reconnect with your True self and reach a higher level of existence that no one can affect with baseness.

You are unique. As Les Brown says “There is greatness within you.” And all of you matters. So now is the time for you to step into your wholeness to reach your highest level of health because humanity needs you to join the forces of healthy people who don’t inflict pain. Healthy people spread love.

Even during this time of the pandemic, civil unrest, and political iniquity, each of us is still capable of being as healthy as possible. When you take your health physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual health to the next level, then you will naturally distance yourself from people in pain.

You can then become a super spreader of love because we need more Mother Teresas. We need more health.

Glen Alex

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World Interrupted | Blog | Glen Alex | Clinical Social Work Therapist LCSW | Author | Glen Alex Show Host | Las Vegas, Nevada

World Interrupted

Never in my lifetime did I think the world would stop. Sure, I’ve experienced moments when time stood still—the deaths of my twins, my mother, my father and two brothers. But that was just my personal world. Then came Rona. And the global shutdown.

Rona imposed death, destruction, and massive uncertainty. Lives were upended. Normalcy dismantled. Couple that with the worldwide social discord over the murder of unarmed and handcuffed George Floyd, captured on video by bystanders. Several earthquakes felt in Las Vegas. “What is happening?”

About four weeks into the shutdown, I had an epiphany. The introvert in me loved being at home when not working as an “essential”. I caught up on rest, reorganized my garage, got creative with The Glen Alex Show, and wrote more. While the accomplishments were time well spent, I still did not like my choices being taken away. Nor did I enjoy the inconsistent mandates based seemingly on political interests rather than science. Plus no tennis!?!?!? Frustration was my quarantine companion.

Then I saw the light. I am a thinker who is always in pursuit of a higher purpose for everything I do. So as I performed those rewarding tasks in my space, it opened my mind to see possibilities. For the past two years or so, I seriously reflected on my life and working 7 days per week knowing I couldn’t keep up that pace. Nor did I want to. In December 2019, my cousin asked on Facebook for a one-word intention for 2020.

Clarity. My intention for this year was to become clear about my goals and choices and results. While I don’t recall the exact moment of my breakthrough, I recognized it immediately. In order to achieve the balance I want in my life, something really important to me had to give. “Yes, this is what I need to do.”

An overwhelming peace settled throughout my being. I won’t say what I chose to give up because that is the most irrelevant part of my epiphany. The importance is the clarity I gained about the opportunity to make a change.

Rona caused so much pain and provided opportunity, as do all challenges. Rona provided the best time to step away because I was already away, for a month at that point. “Now is the time.”

Conditions are favorable for positive, lasting changes for us all. Order is always preceded by chaos. Recession gives rise to upturn. Thus collectively we can create a new world, one full of purpose and camaraderie and mutual respect of each other’s humanity.

Tennis may be the most appropriate blueprint for this shift. It is the love of my life because tennis always shows me what I do well, how good I can be, and what skills I need to develop to be better. Tennis presents challenges along with the provisions to grow through them.

The best results on court come from intention (visualization), practice (preparation), learning (skill development), and most importantly problem solving. Transfer the beauty of tennis to daily life. Set your intention. Prepare to actualize it. Learn coping skills to effectively deal with challenges. And make adjustments as needed.

It is my hope for all of us that we awaken to this opportunity, be ready to act upon it, and have the drive to see it through. Even when life is hard. Even when your world is interrupted.

Crimes Against Humanity | Blog | Glen Alex | Clinical Social Work Therapist LCSW | Author | Glen Alex Show Host | Las Vegas, Nevada

Crimes Against Humanity

I wrote this blog in December 2018 and I am posting it again because it is still relevant. The United States specifically is knee-deep in darkness. Still.

I love crime dramas. The Closer, Criminal Minds, How To Get Away With Murder, The Purge, and every Law and Order Series. These shows delve into the human psyche, which I am passionate about, and demonstrate the depths of depravity unique to our species in an entertaining way. Macabre, I know.

Yet the acts performed on my favorite shows are not real. Those stories are made up and easy to walk away from. Besides being entertaining, crime dramas serve the purpose of allowing viewers to tap into their dark side and sublimate the accompanying impulses.

And while I dig exploration of the mind because I’ve always gravitated toward psychological underpinnings, I shudder at the reality of the harm we humans are capable of inflicting on each other. I am haunted by the brutality of rape, child abuse, domestic violence, killing of innocents, discrimination, and isms. They evoke pain. There is no entertainment value in such actions.

I cannot shake off beatings of anyone because of their race, gender, age, or sexual orientation. A mother killing her children and one lover ending the life of another weigh heavy on my heart. A man forcing himself on a woman with fists and genitalia provokes an emotional stew made of sadness and fear topped with rage.

I am equally impacted by the suffering of those victimized. Their traumatic experiences and untimely deaths seem so unnecessary to me. And painful, emotionally and spiritually. Please know that I am not naïve. I do understand the duality of human existence—good-bad, light-dark, right-wrong, black-white. However, my very human response to human-on-human violence is sadness because I empathize with those victimized. I have the ability put myself into another person’s shoes and experience what they experience…why I can’t stomach the true crime stories. Empathy…“It’s a blessing and a curse.” Adrian Monk

I am also disappointed and outraged that we have not done better. History, technology, heightened awareness are underutilized in improving our individual and collective experiences. What is the hold up?

We have been here before. Many times in human existence factions and fundamentalists and fascists and narcissists imposed their will on others violently. The internet, Youtube, and Facebook give us instant access to useful information. And all things spiritual are more mainstream.

So why haven’t we learned to treat each other better from history? Why haven’t we used technology to right wrongs? Why haven’t we lived the tenets of major religions and wisdom traditions and behave like we are all created equated and of the same Source?

What on earth is taking so long to end crimes against humanity?

Glen Alex, LCSW, Author of Living In Total Health, Health Skills Coach, Speaker

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