1004 Beverley Road Brooklyn, NY 11218
EDITOR IN CHIEF
Lorie Gardner, RN, NBC-HWC
Gayle Gruenberg, CPO-CD, CVO
Rick Hanson, PhD
Mark Hyman, MD
Linda Mitchell, CPC
FROM THE EDITOR
A tragedy is defined as “an event causing
great suffering, destruction, and distress.”
We understand the meaning of those
words, however, I believe the important
component is how we view the situation.
What may be a “tragedy” to one person, is
nothing more than a “bump in the road”
While we can agree that death, divorce,
illness, financial insecurity, a job loss,
create less than desirable circumstances,
each can be viewed and handled differently
from one person to the next. The key is
that person’s outlook.
I recently spoke with FOX LA’s morning
meteorologist, Maria Quiban Whitesell,
who is the author of the new book, You
Can’t Do It Alone: A Widow’s Journey
Through Loss, Grief, and Life After. Maria,
when faced with her husband Sean’s
terminal brain cancer diagnosis, found
herself in a position she could not have
imagined. There were many challenges
for which she was unprepared. But Maria
learned to deal with illness, death and
grief, all while caring for her son and
wearing a smile every day in front of
millions on LA’s morning show, Good Day
LA. To survive, she combined her faith
with an appreciation of her blessings.
She stressed the importance of a positive
Listen to my conversation with Maria:
— Joan Herrmann
MARIA QUIBAN WHITESELL
WHAT NOT TO EAT
BY MARK HYMAN, MD
FIND YOUR OWN WAY
BY RICK HANSON, PHD
IT’S TIME TO FACE YOUR FEARS: 4 STEPS
TO STEPPING OUT OF YOUR COMFORT ZONE
BY JOAN HERRMANN
ON THIS MONTH’S
WHEN FACED WITH HER HUSBAND SEAN’S TERMINAL
BRAIN CANCER DIAGNOSIS, FOXLA’S MORNING
METEOROLOGIST, MARIA QUIBAN WHITESELL,
FOUND HERSELF IN A POSITION SHE COULD NOT
HAVE IMAGINED. SHE HAD TO LEARN TO DEAL WITH
ILLNESS, DEATH AND GRIEF, ALL WHILE CARING
FOR HER SON AND WEARING A SMILE EVERY DAY
IN FRONT OF MILLIONS ON LA’S MORNING SHOW,
GOOD DAY LA. MARIA SHARES HER JOURNEY AND
OFFERS ACTIONABLE INSIGHTS THAT CAN HELP
NAVIGATE CHANGE. MARIA, HER LATE HUSBAND,
SEAN, AND HIS BROTHER, PATRICK, ARE AMONG
THE BIG ENTERTAINMENT FAMILIES IN HOLLYWOOD.
SEAN WAS A WRITER AND PRODUCER FOR TELEVISION
SHOWS INCLUDING HBO’S OZ, FOX’S HOUSE, AND
AMC’S THE KILLING. MARIA AND SOCIAL WORKER,
LAUREN SCHNEIDER, CO-AUTHORED THE BOOK, YOU
CAN’T DO IT ALONE: A WIDOW’S JOURNEY THROUGH
LOSS, GRIEF, AND LIFE AFTER.
HOW TO OVERCOME INSOMNIA WHEN
YOU’RE TOO STRESSED OUT
BY SUZANNE FALTER
LISTEN TO MARIA ON CYACYL:
LIVE WITH INTENTION TO CREATE A LIFE YOU LOVE
BY LINDA MITCHELL
BE PROACTIVE AND BE READY FOR AN
BY LORIE GARDNER
PHOTOGRAPHY PROVIDED BY JOSH KAPLAN
ORGANIZING TECHNIQUE – FRIENDS,
ACQUAINTANCES, AND STRANGERS
BY GAYLE GRUENBERG
STOP SEEKING APPROVAL AND START
LIVING IN REAL FREEDOM
BY GUY FINLEY
24 SEVEN MAGAZINE
I can help you?
I am an Author, Business Consultant, Business/Life Coach and
podcaster ready to provide you with the tools to grow or start
your business, find a new career, let go of your stress and
worry, manage life changes or find more fulfillment.
The Best Gift Of Maybe
Published by Penguin Random
Many things are beyond our
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Self-help and inspirational speaker available for
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Career changes, Reduction of daily stress and worry, Goal
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Business and financial advice including financial analysis
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I have a background in accounting, and I am a licensed
attorney with LLM in taxation. You can find me blogging for
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Rates and References upon request
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For the most part, we all understand how to cook with
real food. We typically don’t add non-food ingredients
into our home-cooked meals. Our avocados aren’t made
with green dye. We don’t sprinkle stearoyl lactylate into
our soups and breads. The problem isn’t typically home
cooked meals using fresh ingredients; the problem is
the food-like substances, chemicals, food additives,
preservatives, food dyes, and artificial sweeteners that
food companies add to their food. But if you don’t have
stearoyl lactylate in your cupboard, then you probably
shouldn’t eat it in the food that you buy either.
Written by Mark Hyman, MD
YOUR INNATE WISDOM
CHANGE YOUR RELATIONSHIP
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For so long, most people were unaware of the chemicals
added to our foods and how the hormones, plastics, and
toxins that we congest on a day to day basis are harming
our bodies. Now, many of us conscious consumers have
learned to avoid breads containing yoga mats and french
fries with Silly Putty in them. But sometimes processed
foods still find their way into our kitchens.
I’m not saying that ALL processed and packaged foods
are all bad. People have been processing food virtually
from day one. Until refrigeration, it was the only way
we had of preserving perishables to eat later. Cooking
is a form of processing, so are curing, drying, smoking,
fermenting — the list goes on and on.
Whole foods processed using traditional methods and
ingredients are not something we need to avoid. Some
processing actually improves food by making its nutrients
more available or potent. We just have to understand
which processed foods we can safely eat and which ones
we should avoid.
In this article I want to walk you through what
processed foods to avoid so that when you do find yourself
deciding on whether or not to buy that box of goodies you
can make better choices.
Avoid the following:
Anything with ingredients that are difficult to
pronounce. These products surely contain substances
that belong in a chemistry set, not in your body. Try saying
stearoyl lactylate or butylated hydroxytoluene with ease.
Not so easy. Skip those questionable ingredients.
Anything that didn’t exist in your grandmother’s day—
maybe even your great-grandmother’s day, depending on
how old you are. I know this is kind of a trendy approach
to eating right now, but it completely makes sense. One
hundred years ago we didn’t need a label to tell us that
our food was local, organic, and grass-fed; all food was
whole, real, unadulterated, traditional food. Fortunately,
there is a desire to get back to this way of eating.
Anything containing soybean oil. Americans now
get almost 10 percent of their calories from refined
soybean oil, which is one of the most abundant sources
of omega-6 fatty acids. Plus, it often contains high levels
of glyphosate, or Roundup, the toxic herbicide used by
Monsanto. It’s not that Americans are drinking soybean
oil by the cup; most people aren’t even aware they’re
eating it. But it’s lurking everywhere. If you eat fast food,
grains, desserts, packaged snacks, potato chips, muffins,
or conventionally raised meat, or buy almost anything
cooked in oil at a cafeteria, diner, or restaurant, then
you’re almost certainly consuming lots of soybean oil
and other oils rich in omega-6 fatty acids without even
knowing it. This stuff is toxic and inflammatory. Stay
Anything containing high-fructose corn syrup. When
used in moderation, it is a major cause of heart disease,
obesity, cancer, dementia, liver failure, tooth decay, and
Anything with the word “hydrogenated” in its name.
Since most people don’t know that hydrogenated fat and
trans fat are the same thing, food makers have been able
to hide the trans fat content in plain sight using this little
Anything advertised on TV. Have you seen a commercial
for broccoli or sardines during the Super Bowl? The
worst foods get the most airtime on television.
Anything with a cute name. Froot Loops are not a good
source of fruit.
Anything you can buy at a drive-through window. This
one is a no-brainer.
Anything with monosodium glutamate (otherwise
known as MSG), even though the FDA says it is safe.
It’s an excitotoxin—a neurotransmitter that is known
to kill brain cells. We associate it with Chinese cuisine,
but food companies use it in many items without our
knowledge. They even try to hide its presence, calling
it “hydrolyzed vegetable protein,” “vegetable protein,”
“natural flavorings,” and even simply “spices.” Spices?
Tricky, right? And the worst news—it induces hunger
and carb cravings, so you’ll eat more of it. It’s what they
give to lab rats in experiments to fatten them up
Any food in an aerosol can.
Anything called “cheese food” (which is neither cheese
Anything with artificial sweeteners. The evidence
is catching up. Recent studies have not been kind to
artificial sweeteners, claiming among other problems
they adversely affect gut health and glucose tolerance.
I recommend giving up aspartame, sucralose, sugar
alcohols such as maltitol, and all of the other heavily used
and marketed sweeteners unless you want to slow down
your metabolism, gain weight, and become an addict. Use
a little stevia if you must, but skip out on the others.
Anything with any type of additives, preservatives, or
dyes (of which we eat about 2 1⁄2 pounds per person per
Any food with more than five ingredients on the label,
unless they are all things you recognize, such as tomatoes,
water, basil, oregano, salt.
I know this might seem like a long list, but you can
avoid all of these items by sticking with real, whole foods,
and brands that you trust.
I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again, food is literally
the most powerful medicine you have available to control
your health. I want you to think of your kitchen as your
pharmacy. It all starts with taking out the junk, and
putting in the good stuff.
About The Author
Mark Hyman MD is the Director of Cleveland Clinic’s Center
for Functional Medicine, the Founder of The UltraWellness
Center, and a ten-time #1 New York Times Bestselling author.
To Learn More Visit:
WE MAKE YOUR
S O C I A L M E D I A M A R K E T I N G
F O R B U S I N E S S
Written by Rick Hanson, PhD
The human body has about
100 trillion cells (plus another ten quadrillion
microscopic critters hitching a ride, most of them
beneficial or harmless). Each one of your cells
has aims – goals, in a sense – controlled by its
DNA: cells conduct processes aimed at particular
functions, like building bones or gobbling up
harmful invaders. Cells also work together in
larger and larger assemblies in pursuit of broader
goals, such as the 100 billion neurons in your brain
that run the nervous system, which as a whole is
itself the master regulator of the body.
In effect, there are layers, hierarchies, of goals
in the body – and a similar architecture of aims
in the mind. For example, operating right now is
the goal of moving your eyes over these words,
which serves the goal of
understanding them, which
serves larger goals such as
desires to learn new things,
new skills, and to be truly
In short, whether in the
body or the mind, there is
no life without goals. Trying
to “transcend” goals is itself
a goal. The only question is:
Are your goals good ones? In
other words, do they lead to
happiness and benefits for
you and others rather than
suffering and harms?
To choose good goals we
must balance the influences of
the world and the murmurings
of the heart. Some counsel
from others is good; I wish I’d
listened to my parents’ advice
to start saving in my 20’s
(rather than in my 50’s when I
finally got around to it).
But often we get nudged, cowed, persuaded,
bullied, seduced, enveloped, swept along, or
otherwise drawn into values, priorities, gender or
culture roles, perspectives on life, assumptions,
addictions, career choices, marriages, spiritual
practices or orientations, etc. etc. etc. that in ways
large or small are not really, not deeply, right for
us. And sometimes we are an active participant
in this process. For example, it was a combination
of external hype and internal laziness that led me
to try to take a shortcut in my early 30’s with my
training as a psychologist, which then cost me a
couple years of effort to get back on the right path.
In effect, a thousand little threads tug at us
this way and that, many of them originating from
within, internalized voices and faces from the past
and “shoulds” and “musts” from the present.
When these threads pull you from your
true course – the one that is authentic, at the
intersection of your talents and joys and values,
appropriate to your temperament and nature, and
filled with heart – you end up feeling sidetracked,
caught in a backwater, unfulfilled, unused, adrift,
trapped, even alienated from your own life. Do
you have any sense of this, yourself?
So it’s important to find your own way.
As a frame, know that you can follow your
course while also fulfilling your responsibilities.
With intention and practice, an inner freedom
is available while being externally engaged. You
From The Story
“You can follow
make these responsibilities part of your course,
an honorable expression of it, informed by it, an
opportunity for growth in your own way.
Consider how you are not living your own life
as much as you could. In relationships, do you
make more room for the other person’s needs
than your own? What aren’t you saying? Whose
shoulds or plans or taboos are you living out?
(Especially the ones from childhood.) How might
you be conforming, even in subtle ways, to scripts
or teachings or group-think or cultural programs?
When you get those other voices out of your
head, what’s left that’s true? What silence might be
speaking to you?
Take a look at parts of your life, such as family or
career or a particular relationship. Have you drifted
from your own truth in any of these situations?
What specific course corrections could you make?
What would help you stick with them?
Open to guidance outside the box. Draw on (for
most people) the right side of your brain for images
of your current path and where it could be better to
go. Listen to your heart: What in your life is truly
working for you that you could strengthen, and
what is calling to you to lean more toward? Step
out of your normal routine for an hour or longer:
go for a long drive or walk, take a workshop, spend
a day with a dear friend – and look at your life from
a bird’s-eye view, with a sense of possibility and
freedom: Alright, no praise or blame, but where to
head from here?
The shift in course could be tiny. It could be
simply a matter of adjusting an attitude or spending
20 minutes a day in a new way. But extended
forward over the rest of your life, and meanwhile
knowing in your heart that it is true for you, will
make all the difference in the world.
We make a life a minute at a time. In this minute,
you can lean as much as possible toward your own
As they say in Tibet, if you take care of the
minutes, the years will take care of themselves.
About The Author
RICK HANSON, PHD
Rick Hanson, PhD, is a psychologist, Senior
Fellow of the Greater Good Science Center
at UYC Berkeley, and a New York Times bestselling
author. His books have been published
in 29 languages and include Neurodharma,
Resilient, and Hardwiring Happiness.
To Learn More Visit:
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September 2020 Issue
It’s Time to Face Your Fears:
4 Steps to Stepping Out of
Your Comfort Zone
Written by Joan Herrmann
Do you allow fear to stop you
dead in your tracks whenever you think about trying
something new? Does that voice in your head conjure up
a list of reasons to be inactive, why you shouldn’t try to
accomplish a goal?
For most of my life, I was that person, too afraid to take
a chance, self-sabotaging myself at every turn. I had a
reason for every roadblock that I built; I allowed fear to
govern my life.
It took a major life upheaval and a lot of soul searching
to get me to change my ways. And when I did, I realized
that I hadn’t really lived - I played it safe and simply
Over the course of the past decade, I have had the
opportunity to interview people that have inspired and
challenged me to step outside of the comfort zone I called
life. I met warriors who have overcome tremendous
challenges and displayed courage that most can only
imagine They changed my way of thinking!
Some of these people were born without arms and legs,
or feet, or hands; others have lost their vision or the ability
to walk; and others have survived horrific trauma and now
live their life in service to others.
Every one of these people had every right to live in fear
as they faced unfathomable challenges, but they all chose
to confront their limitations and achieve what many
would consider to be “impossible”. They understood that
fear is nothing more than a mindset, a perception, False
Evidence Appearing Real. They taught me that each time
we face our fear, we gain strength, courage and confidence
in the doing.
So, the next time you’re faced with an overwhelming
challenge, an opportunity to try something new, or the
chance to step out of your comfort zone, how do you push
fear aside and take action?
1. Evaluate the driving force behind your fear. Is it a
real consideration or something that you have created in
2. Make a list of your concerns and attack them one
by one. Ask yourself, “What is the worst thing that can
happen?” (btw…it usually doesn’t).
3. Develop a plan of action. What is your goal and how
will you achieve it? Empower yourself with knowledge.
4. Muster up the courage and take a chance. The best
plans are meaningless without action. As the explorer
Christopher Columbus said, “You can never cross the
ocean until you have the courage to lose sight of the
Remember, it isn’t the end result that matters … it’s the
journey. You may just enjoy the ride!
About The Author
Joan Herrmann, creator of the Change Your Attitude…Change
Your life brand, is the host of the radio show, Conversations with
Joan, which is broadcast on New York’s AM970 The Answer. She is
the publisher of 24 Seven magazine and a motivational speaker.
To Learn More Visit:
September 2020 Issue
How to Overcome Insomnia
When You’re Too Stressed Out
Written by Suzanne Falter
I had chronic
after night. It
by an unstable
followed by the
of my daughter, both of which collided with menopause.
OB/GYN’s say insomnia is the most common
complaint of the menopausal women they treat. Yet,
chronic insomnia can also be set off by intense PTSD
and grief. A recent NPR report indicates more than 60
million Americans suffer from insomnia. Only now,
several years after my crises, do I sleep peacefully.
Here’s what my insomnia looks like. I wake up three to
four hours after I fall asleep. I’m so wide awake I could
play a hand of cards, compose a business letter, or go
organize my closets. It takes hours to fall back to sleep.
I’ve tried nearly every remedy and read every book
out there, some of which work better than others. I even
took a seminar for health professionals about insomnia
and the over stimulated brain.
I’m not one to turn to sleeping pills, sedatives or even
medical marijuana as they only mask the problem. Once
you stop taking them, your insomnia is still there …
waiting patiently for you.
To that end, here’s the drug-free list of alternatives
that have worked for me so far.
Keep a sleep log at night. This helps you
track just how your behavior affects your sleep.
Make columns for date and sleep percentage,
time to bed, time you fell asleep, number of times
you woke, total time awake, final time awake,
time you got out of bed, and quality of sleep from
one to five. At the end leave a column for notes
on what varied from day to day.
Update your sleep log each morning. Then
calculate this: # of minutes slept ÷ # of minutes
in bed. Keep your log for a while, then track that
sleep percentage each day relative to how your
behavior varies. When you get at least five days of
sleep over 90 percent you’ll know what’s working.
Wear blue light blocking glasses. Mounting
evidence says the blue light from phone and
computer screens can keep you awake. The
light tricks the brain into thinking it’s daytime,
even when it’s not. However, blue light blocking
glasses (available on places like Amazon) remove
the blue light from your phone, computer or
television. This actually works!
No simple carbs at night. Simple carbs like
cookies, candy, cereal, potatoes, white bread and
baked goods can wake you up in the middle of
the night when consumed in the afternoon or
evening. “Reverse meals,” advised one doctor.
Eat a big lunch and just some light protein and
veggies, soup or fruit for dinner.
Create a dark cozy sanctuary with an
eye pillow. Removing light pollution from your
bedroom is often a key to a good night’s sleep.
The best way I’ve found is with a small silk bag
that’s like a beanbag filled with flax seeds. Eye
pillows lay across your eyes keeping the light out
from, say, a partner who likes to read after you go
to sleep, or light pollution from the street.
Write down your worries. Keep a worry log
and you’ll find out just how worried you actually
are. If you write these thoughts down in a place
other than your bedroom in the early evening
and then put them away, you will naturally move
concerns through your brain more easily at
night. It also helps to schedule a time when you
will resolve some of these issues.
Exercise daily. Even a 20-minute walk can
help, but don’t work out just before bed. I find
exercise takes the edge off of my natural anxiety
and helps me chill out. Then I’m truly tired by
Avoid alcohol. Yeah, we all know this one.
Personally I find it very true that when I have a
glass of wine it will revisit me in the middle of the
night and mess with my sleep.
Eliminate caffeine completely. One doctor
From The Story
told me that we become more sensitive to caffeine
as we get into mid-life. Furthermore, caffeine has
been found to have a ‘half life’ that stays in your
body an average of 5.7 hours after the buzz is gone.
Certain genetic variants can keep the buzz going
far longer so you sleep far more fitfully.
Keep your window open at night and use
ear plugs if you need to. Simple but true. The
body rests more deeply if slightly chilled. If you
have ambient noise outside, silicone ear plugs are
actually very effective.
Practice sleep restraint and keep a
consistent sleep schedule. This is the single
most effective remedy I have found for my
insomnia. By keeping a sleep log you will come
to learn how much sleep you actually need to
feel good. Note: by mid-life, most of us tend to
need less sleep than when we were younger. The
average for people over 50 is actually 6.5 hours.
Sleep restraint is modifying how long you stay
in bed each night. It means getting up within
three minutes of naturally waking up, whether
you want to or not. So if you go to bed at 10 PM
and you wake up at 5:30 or 6 AM, you get up, turn
on the lights and start your day instead of rolling
over. By the same turn, keep yourself awake at
night until your consistent bedtime arrives. If you
have trouble staying awake, go for a brief walk.
This will be uncomfortable at first but give it a few
days and your body will adjust — and you’ll begin
to stay more consistently.
Much of good sleep has to do with learned habit
and association. So this teaches the body to use
more of its time in bed actually sleeping.
Methodically relax your mind. When my
mind is racing in the middle of the night, I lie in
bed and quietly calm each part of my head, jaw,
face, neck, shoulders, moving on through the body.
It’s basically a way to methodically still the mind
and relax the body. And it’s often the last thing I
remember when trying to fall back to sleep.
May you find something helpful here in your
quest for a good night’s sleep. Sweet dreams!
About The Author
Suzanne Falter is the author of The Extremely Busy
Woman’s Guide to Self-Care and the host of the Self-
Care for Extremely Busy Women podcast.
To Learn More Visit:
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September 2020 Issue
Live With Intention To
Create A Life You Love
Written by Linda Mitchell, CPC
Want an effective way
to bring positive changes into your life?
Use the proven power of intention. From
the Wright Brothers intention to fly, to
yesterday’s intention to reach a personal
goal, ideas and intentions create your
physical reality and determine outcomes.
When we tune into this field of pure
potentiality, we are limitless. Intentions
manifest into reality when you feed them
by consistently focusing your attention on
Make clear intentions and anchor them
in by spending time visualizing what you
desire. Many studies show those who
visualize what they intend to bring forth
have much greater success! See and feel
yourself in the scenario you want to bring
about; use all five senses to marinate in it.
It’s time well invested.
It’s critical to align your thoughts with
your intentions. Do you outwardly intend
for something wonderful but quietly fret
about it or hold anxious thoughts and fears
that it won’t happen? This contradictory
and constricting energy makes it much
harder to achieve the end result. Reluctance,
resistance or doubt all lower your vibration
and create roadblocks to realizing your
intention. It’s much tougher to manifest
your intentions when your inner critic has
control of your thoughts whispering, “Who
do you think you are - you’ll never achieve
Be sure you’re not creating intentions
from a place of angst, worry or disbelief.
You’ll just boomerang that negative energy
back to you, frustrate yourself and stall the
process. Fear, apprehension and struggle
lower your vibration and your energy. If you
believe it has to be hard, it will be!
Surrender control and trust there’s more
than one good way to get there. Be open
to unexpected ways of creating the result
without attachment to any one particular
path to success. Your intention must be
line with your empowered beliefs, faith
in yourself and the conviction that you
deserve what you intend for. Align your
intentions with your hero self, the part of
you that truly believes you can create it and
that you’re worthy of it.
You can create a new reality by
concentrating on your intentions. Beliefs
and intentions determine outcome.
Success is achieved when the intention
is clear, specific and you’re willing to take
inspired actions which move you closer to
the desired event. Get focused and connect
with why you’ve created a particular
intention. Be sure it’s in alignment with
your values and your vision.
State your intentions in present tense
rather than terms that leave you in a state of
wanting. For example, saying, my intention
is to secure a fulfilling well-paying job, beats
saying I want a fulfilling well-paying job.
The later statement signals that you expect
to remain in a state of wanting versus
believing you’ll secure that job. There’s a big
difference in the energy of these statements
so be sure to create intentions which mirror
your true desires using words that reflect
belief and trust that the change is already
beginning to manifest. You’ll see it when
you believe it!
About The Author
Linda Mitchell, a board certified executive
and personal coach, speaker and reinvention
expert empowers people who are
stuck, overwhelmed or ready for change to
confidently transition into their next meaningful
role with clarity, purpose and ease
and emerge more powerful, passionate and
fulfilled. Reclaim balance and joy!
To Learn More Visit:
and Be Ready
for an Emergency
Written by Lorie Gardner, RN, NBC-HWC
As we start to
gain some insights
it has become clear that the need to be prepared
for an emergency hospitalization is very important.
Equally important, is to have a conversation
with your loved one, friend, or private patient
advocate who will be your main contact person
during the hospitalization. Think hard about who
you want that to be. It should be someone who
is committed to assisting you in understanding
what is going on in the hospital, is not afraid to
ask the important questions, and will challenge
the situation and completely understand what
your wishes are.
Being prepared legally is an important step.
Liaise with your attorney and have a Power of
Attorney and a Healthcare Proxy document set up.
This will protect you in circumstances when you
are unable to make decisions for yourself. Also,
have an Advance Health Care Directive compiled
so it is clear to your person
who is making decisions for
you, when you can’t, what your
It is wise to ensure which
hospitals in your area are
in your health insurance
network ahead of time. You
can also check the hospital(s)
ratings. Some hospitals are
safer than others. You can
check the LeapFrog Hospital
Safety Grade website, and if
you are having surgery, you
can check your surgeon’s
ratings at Propublica’s Surgeon
This pandemic has made
very clear the need to have a
communication plan while
in the hospital. You may
have many family members
or friends that want to be
involved in your status and
recovery. It is essential to have one person who is
dedicated to liaising with the nursing staff, social
workers, and medical team to stay on top of the
plan of care and test results.
It is wise to set up a patient portal for the
hospital so certain data can be monitored. This
person needs to introduce him/herself to the
medical team as the person to be directly involved
in every detail of the hospitalization. Ask each
member of the medical and hospital team for a
business card/contact information and the best
times to get updates.
Always be aware of what the daily treatment
plan is for the day. Frequently, the plan of care and/
or goals are written on a whiteboard in the patient’s
room. Understand what all of your medications
are indicated for and their possible side effects. If
a new medication is started while in the hospital,
make sure you know who prescribed it and why.
Ask what the potential benefits and side effects are.
If you have any imaging tests, ask the reason
for the test. Request the results as soon as they are
available and if the results require any additional
treatment. Understand the lab results they are
collecting and what they mean.
This may all be too much for you as the patient
since you may want to concentrate on healing.
Have your loved one, friend, or private patient
advocate maintain a notebook and keep detailed
notes on your progress and actions taken while in
From The Story
just has a
on our brains
Hospital Tool Kit
It can be helpful to have a bag containing
vital information should you have an emergent
hospitalization. This could include the following:
• Fact sheet – contains your name, address,
phone number, date of birth and any allergies
• Emergency contact person – name, phone
number, email and text information
• Medication list – list all the prescribed drugs,
over the counter drugs and supplements you take
• Medical conditions – list any chronic or acute
• Past surgeries and hospitalizations – a list of
any surgeries or hospitalizations you have had
listed in date order
• Insurance information – a copy of the front and
back of your insurance card
• HIPAA or Healthcare Proxy document
• Advance directive
• POLST or MOLST form, if available
• Power of Attorney
• Patient portal information
• Overnight bag with your cell phone and
charger, 24 hours of medications, hearing aid,
glasses, notebook and pen, toiletries.
• Other – a note about anything special the
hospital staff or emergency responders should
know about you if you are not able to communicate
There were many people during this pandemic
that were admitted to the hospital in an emergency
and there was unavoidable stress due to no
visitation for family members. Being prepared with
a plan, a contact person, and the above information
can increase the ability to communicate and lessen
About The Author
Lorie Gardner RN, BSN, NBC-HWC, founded
Healthlink Advocates, Inc., to assist people
with all aspects of their healthcare. As private
nurse patient advocates and board certified
health and wellness coaches, they partner
with clients seeking assistance navigating the
complex healthcare system and those seeking
self-directed, lasting health improvements
aligned with their values.
To Learn More Visit:
MOM, TAKE YOUR LIFE BACK
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Meet other awesome
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Heidi Rome, MBA, Autism Moms Coach
and Founder, Moms Spectrum Oasis, LLC
Helping autism mothers stay strong,
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kids’ lifelong needs met.
Schedule Your Talk With Heidi TODAY!
September 2020 Issue
Organizing Technique – Friends,
Acquaintances, and Strangers
Written by Gayle M. Gruenberg, CPO-CD ® , CVO
Are there some things
in your home that are so important
to you that you just can’t imagine life
without them? Are there other things
that you wonder how they got in the door
in the first place? Do some things fall in
When I work onsite with clients, one
of the challenges I sometimes face is
helping them decide if they should keep
or purge something. Clients sometimes
own very large collections of things (think
hundreds of pairs of shoes), to which
they become attached. When collections
threaten to take over the house, it’s time
to pare down. This can be very difficult,
and clients can become paralyzed. Every
item seems to be unique.
Many clients process their decisions
according to their emotions and
how they feel about things. They
call in a professional because the
organizing process can be easier when
it’s social. Using a technique that
anthropomorphizes inanimate objects
helps to tap into their emotional
One of my organizing colleagues,
Judith Kolberg, created a game to play
with her clients. She calls it Friends,
Acquaintances, and Strangers. She
shares it in her book, Conquering Chronic
Disorganization, and it has become one
of my favorite organizing techniques.
The process can be used for anything:
business cards, Tupperware, clothes,
papers, time commitments, or anything
that has accumulated in a client’s life.
Thinking of their collection in terms
of how close an item is to clients’ hearts,
whether an item is a Friend - that
is, especially important, valuable, or
loved; which is a Stranger that has long
overstayed its welcome; and which is a
mere Acquaintance, which hasn’t yet put
down roots, can make it easier to decide
what to keep and what to purge.
About The Author
GAYLE M. GRUENBERG
Gayle M. Gruenberg, CPO-CD ® , CVO is the
chief executive organizer of Let’s Get Organized,
LLC, an organizer coach, and the creator
of the Make Space for Blessings system.
To Learn More Visit:
WRITTEN BY GUY FINLEY
APPROVAL AND START
LIVING IN REAL FREEDOM
SEEKING APPROVAL IS A POWERFUL MOTIVATING FORCE IN
MOST OF US. OUR UNENDING SEARCH FOR THE CONFIRMATION
OF OTHERS RUNS DEEP WITHIN US. WE ARE UNKNOWINGLY
DRIVEN BY THE IDEA THAT IF WE COULD JUST BE ACCEPTED,
THAT WOULD BE THE KEY TO FINALLY KNOWING WHO WE ARE.
Most of us share the mistaken
belief that if we could get enough people to approve of us, then
we would feel some relief from the ache in our soul that is always
trying to figure out who we should be.
As a result, we are kept in a secret form of captivity. But we
can break free of its bonds, and this liberating process starts
by asking ourselves: What happens to someone who is always
looking for approval?
The answer is clear: We sell ourselves! This unconscious,
self-destructive behavior has become so habitual to us we don’t
catch it. But if we’re paying attention, we can see it when we
watch other people.
Just listen to a group of people talking over lunch and you
can see that the casual conversations of human beings are really
fencing competitions — one person saying something and then
another person trying to top it. There is this continual tug of
war, a real competition going on. Lunches in a social situation
can be exhausting!
Then there are our families. At a family dinner, all the old
business is brought up, with everyone competing and trying to
prove they did better in life than we did.
If we can see this is so, it raises some important questions:
• Why does this go on? Why do we take part in it? What is
taking place within us when there is a continual longing for
acceptance? Why do we feel that if we’re approved we’ll finally
find our real self?
• Why is it that anyone can look at us askew, or someone can
say the smallest thing and all the king’s horses and all the king’s
men can’t put us back together again!
• What is the root of the endless compromise where we want
to be accepted, but to be accepted we have to gain approval –
and we’ll sell ourselves to get that approval, no matter how we
must do it?
• Why is that even if we are actually confirmed by someone,
we need two “someones” to confirm us after that? Why is it
never enough? Why is it that there are there never enough
possessions, never enough power, never enough authority, etc.?
The root within us of our endless search for acceptance and
approval is a part of us that is forever telling us that we are
unacceptable as we are. Something lives in us that actually
causes, by its very nature, a feeling in us that as we are, we are
just not enough.
And then, ironically, doing what that part of us says to do
actually makes us more vulnerable.
For example, perhaps you think to yourself, “I’m not enough.
I need more money.” So you go out and make more money. But
then maybe you lose the money you had defined yourself by,
and what happens then? You go straight down. You crash. And
now you have to find something new to define yourself by!
We must understand that no definition of anything, including
ourselves, exists without having its root in comparison.
Comparison is fine when it comes to practical thought, to hot
vs. cold, to knowing what route to take to get home, etc.
But it isn’t right when it comes to questions like “who am I?”
or “what’s my life about?” If I try to know who I am, what my
true nature is, by comparing myself to some external measure,
then I’ve made myself dependent on the thing I’ve compared
We want to be free, and to be free means to understand what
the path of freedom is really about. The path of freedom is not
about winning acceptance from the world around us; in fact
the path of freedom, of coming to possess our own life, cannot
be gained by anything we might imagine.
If we are to be free, we must begin with discovering what it
is within us that causes us to see ourselves as needful of those
things we now sell our souls to win.
If we will agree to let go of whatever we find that binds us to
the false idea that we are somehow incomplete – then freedom
follows naturally. It is done for us. And we will know that Life
and Liberty for which our heart longs.
About The Author
Guy Finley is an internationally renowned spiritual teacher
and bestselling self-help author. He is the founder and
director of Life of Learning Foundation, a nonprofit center for
transcendent self-study located in Merlin, Oregon.
To Learn More Visit: