Gratitude and Joy

In a world that sells dissatisfaction, it’s almost heretical to feel happy about your body. And on the rare occasion when body satisfaction is socially acceptable, it’s usually in the context of “Dang, I look amazing in my wedding dress/tailored business suit/perm/bathing suit/whatever I just spent a lot of money on in order to make me feel this way for a couple of hours.” For all the sunshiny Facebook messages telling you “You’re beautiful!” there’s not much to make us feel legitimately joyful to be in our own skins.

So where does happiness come from, anyway? Psychological studies show that happiness stems not from being the best, most successful, or sexiest, but from gratitude. So telling yourself over and over that you’ve got a great body is less likely to leave you feeling happy than feeling grateful for the body you’ve got. It’s not always easy. None of our bodies are perfect. We often feel at odds with our bodies, feeling as though they’re betraying us in some fundamental way.

Still, it’s the season of Thanksgiving, and if there were ever a time to give thanks for the bodies we inhabit, it’s now.

You can give thanks that your body has seen you through many long years of life.

You can give thanks that your body is young and healthy and strong.

You can give thanks that your body has taught you important lessons about pain and the mental and emotional strength you have in bearing it.

You can give thanks that your body has survived the ravages of cancer.

You can give thanks that while your body contains the seeds of the disease that may one day kill it, it will not die today.

You can give thanks that your body has given rise to new life.

You can give thanks if your body honors your parents with features it received from them.

You can give thanks if your body honors your parents with its presence, against all odds, having been born to others.

You can give thanks if your body has the senses to know beauty, the sights, sounds, smells, tastes, and feelings of the world around you.

You can give thanks if your body includes a mind that can think, imagine, and dream.

You can give thanks that your body has built, dug, cooked, sewn, planted, and shaped the world around it.

You can give thanks that your body has held and honored and taught the bodies of others around you.

Massage therapists are lucky people. We get to see the wonder in the bodies around us every day. It’s an honor, and one we’re perpetually grateful for. On Thanksgiving Day, give thanks for food and family and friendship, those standards of the season. Express your gratitude however you normally do, through writing in your journal, phone calls to your loved ones, a reflective walk in the woods, or prayer. But don’t forget that inimitable body of yours, which has accomplished so many things throughout your life. If we all inhabited our bodies with an attitude of gratitude, who knows what might happen? Maybe that whole peace on earth business wouldn’t seem so far away.

The holiday season comes with all kinds of lovely traditions, like family, food, and lights. Unfortunately, between gift-giving, navigating the winter weather, and perhaps just a bit of a togetherness overdose, the holidays can often come with a bonus tradition as well: stress.

This year, avoid the department store madness and help your loved ones relax with the gift of massage. Gift certificates are easy-as-pumpkin pie to purchase, and are useful for anything from a daytime appointment to soothe Aunt Judith’s winter aches, to a couples massage in the evening for you and your sweetie to share.* Check Out Holiday Specials! 

Everywhere around the world, people celebrate special moments with touch, from handshakes to high-fives to hugs. Start a new tradition this year. Call 518-713-4560 or Buy Online Now to share the gift of massage with someone whose presence in your life is definitely worth celebrating.

 

 

8 Non-Traditional Ways to Celebrate Thanksgiving

Who says Thanksgiving has to be traditional? Maybe you’re the type of person who thinks out of the box or maybe you’re just tired of the same food, same people, and same thing every year. We’re here to help!

We’ve frolicked through the internet and found the most unique ways to celebrate Thanksgiving. Here are our favorites:

Change it up

Have a potluck, set up a cheese (or chocolate!) fondue, or try your hand at a vegan Thanksgiving spread. You could also have a contest with friends to create a turkey out of random food, like carved canned cranberry or sculpted mashed potatoes.

Reflection

Pass out some index cards. Have everyone write what they are grateful for on one side and their goals for following year on the other. Seal it up in an envelope with their name on it and have them open it the following year. (Mail cards to those who can’t make it.)

Go out to eat

Dinner and dishes shouldn’t be heaped on the host. Let someone else do the cooking and cleaning. Just enjoy the company. Easy peasy.

Invite a (sort-of) stranger

Consider extending your circle to include someone you wouldn’t normally see at Thanksgiving. Maybe a distant relative or friend. Go a little further and invite someone you know from church/library/grocery store who might have nowhere to go.

Travel to a faraway land

If you’re really frisky, start your own tradition and get out of dodge. Plan to go somewhere fun or focus on relaxation and rejuvenation. Or just have a close-to-home vacation in a nearby city or off-season vacation spot. Make sure you plan to get a massage! Book Now!

Build a tree

This one works especially well with kids. Take a big piece of paper and draw a simple tree. Hang it on a wall. On November 1st, and each day after, write on a leaf something you’re grateful for and add it to the tree. By the end of the month, you will have a beautiful tree full of all the things you are thankful for!

Themed Thanksgiving

Plan a themed Thanksgiving dinner. Venture into another culture and see what surfaces.  Italian, Middle Eastern, Chinese to name a few.

Cocktail party

Mix it up with a mixology party, play charades, or sing karaoke. Plan to hang out in your sweats or get all dolled up in your formal wear. Anything goes.

As you can see there are no rules. If you feel some rules still apply, don’t you think it’s about time to break a few? The most important thing is spending time with loved ones and doing what makes you happy.

We hope you have a very Happy Thanksgiving!

November is Military Family Appreciation Month

Imagine a normal day. You wake up, grumble about not having enough sleep, and reluctantly get out of bed. Today your day is routinely filled with work, errands, and other ordinary tasks. It’s nothing you would consider special.

Between grocery shopping and getting the oil changed in your car, you have a laundry list of things to accomplish and Junior has a soccer game tonight. And that’s all before you have a chance to get dinner on the table.

A typical day for us is filled with seemingly mundane tasks that really are quite amazing when you compare to what other families – across the country, across town, across the street – are going through.

I’m talking about military families.

I’m talking about the families that live through all those mundane tasks but have much higher hurdles to clear. Each situation is different but they all hold a common thread; a spouse in the military.

When a serviceman or woman is deployed their spouse has to keep things together while they are away. They pick up the reins for every imaginable task. Household chores, wiping noses, paying bills, playing with the kids, vehicle maintenance…. every last project falls squarely on their shoulders.

In 2012, military families across America, more than 900,000 children experienced the deployment of one or both parents multiple times.[1]

When the a military member is not deployed, their spouse is subject to the schedule given to them; countless hours of PT, missions, and all the military work involved. In some cases, the spouse is forced to leave their job – reducing their household income – due to relocating, having children, no childcare, and other reasons.

Military families (also known as “dependents”) endure quite a bit of moving, too. Transferring from base to base can raise lots of challenges. Each new place requires learning the area, finding and making new friends, and countless other adjustments. Their lives are filled with change and uncertainty. And if there are children involved (usually there are), it creates instability sometimes leaving them feeling insecure.

A 2012 demographics report states active duty members with children shows 42.4% of those children are between the ages of birth and 5 years old. [2]

Military family members are faced with bittersweet moments too. Junior takes his first step and they can’t revel in the moment like you and I could. The excitement and thrill of this new feat can easily be followed up with a longing for the service member missing from the moment. And we’re not even talking about holidays.

Dependents are the built-in support system for our military members. They offer the connection to home, offering their love and a letter right when the troops need it most.  But it doesn’t stop there, military family members are there when those in service returns from deployment. They are the ones who help pick up the pieces. Like a behind-the-scenes crew, trying to clean up the mess and sometimes at a loss as to what they can do.

Military families are the backbone of this country.

They are constantly adjusting to someone else’s schedule and agenda, they pick up and move at a moments notice. And often they sleep in a half empty bed with a cold, vacant spot waiting for they deployed. Military spouses pick up every last toy, fold every last sock, and wipe every tear. They do whatever needs to be done and often they do it alone.

When I think of military families I think of strength, resiliency, and courage. I think of patience and an undying support system.

I also think of the heartache and sacrifices they make. Not an easy thing to do. Friends are often hard to find and keep. And most often relatives live far away – so I have to ask, who supports them.

During Military Family Appreciation Month, I want you to look beyond feeling gratitude for the mundane task you need to get done. I want you to reach further than recognizing the ability to lay your head down at night feeling utterly safe.

I want you to look at the people who support our military on every level imaginable.

Make an effort to show your appreciation for military family members. It might come in the form of dropping off a casserole, helping them plan a budget, fix a painted shut window, getting them a massage BOOK NOW, or offering to take their kids for a few hours. Look at the many ways you can help out and DO it.

So, in honor of Military Family Appreciation Month, we’d like to say thank you to all the military families who are on the front lines of supporting the men and women who protect us.

[1] DoSomething.org

[2] National Military Family Association

5 Ways to Celebrate Life with Cupcakes

Cupcakes. Who doesn’t love cupcakes? November 10th is National Vanilla Cupcake Day and we’re here to celebrate. We’ve covered some heavier topics in previous posts, so this month we are going to lighten the mood with cake.

Share with friends.

We know it’s hard to share any dessert, but cupcakes are the perfect addition to any coffee date. Catch up with a friend, drink some coffee, tea or cocoa, and savor the moments.

Get creative.

If you like to bake, step out of your comfort zone and attempt to create a cupcake with unique ingredients. Try a savory cupcake. Or attempt a new decorating style.

Enjoy downtime.

Trying to cut back on the sweets? Tune in to Cupcake Wars on Food Network and watch all the yummy goodness without the calories.

Bake together.

What better way to bond with a special person in your life. It may be your child, grandchild, niece or nephew, anything goes here. It goes beyond the treat and makes the quality time spent together that much sweeter.

Give a gift.

Cupcakes make a perfectly sweet gift. Couple that with a massage gift certificate Buy Now! and you’ll knock gift-giving out of the park.

If you haven’t figured it out yet, this holiday celebrates the cupcake as much as the people and relationships around it. Take a time out, bring some cupcakes to an elderly neighbor, or simply slow down and enjoy life. Cupcakes and all.

3 Ways to Connect with the Kids in your Life

Every one of us has been a child. And as children, we all know there are two kinds of adults: There are those who get it, who know how to talk, play, imagine, and explore like a kid. And there are, well, the rest of them. The excruciatingly boring ones, the ones who terrify us into swearing, cross our hearts, that we’ll never turn into that kind of grown up. The kind that sent Peter Pan hightailing it for Neverland as fast as Tinkerbell could take him.

You may be an adult now, one who pays bills and takes vitamins and reads about the things politicians say, but that doesn’t mean you can’t have high-quality, meaningful interactions with the kids in your life, whether they’re your own or simply the kids next door. Here are three places to start:

Ask different questions

Dinner table or car ride conversation is often stunted. Kids are great at one word answers to typical daily questions like “How was your day? Did you learn anything cool in school today?”

And every kid gets the same two questions when they see adults who are not their parents. “How old are you now?” and “How’s school?”

So mix it up! Here are some great conversation starters to ask (and answer) when you’re hanging out with kids.

  • If you were invisible for a day, what would you do?
  • If you could, what type of animal would you be?
  • If you could make up a brand new school subject, what would it be?
  • If you could make up a new holiday, what would it be?
  • If you could put frosting on any food in the world what would it be?
  • If you could trade places with anyone for one day, who would it be?
  • If someone wrote an article about you in your school’s newspaper, what would you want them to say?

Exercise together

We can use the word ‘exercise’ loosely here. The key is to move around, get the endorphin’s flowing, and have fun.

Play the kids your favorite dance song, and let them choose one, too. Race up and down the driveway a few times. Bust out some old-school jumping jacks or a jump rope. Even 5 minutes is enough to get the blood pumping and some giggles happening.

Massage each other

Massage does not have to be a big complex endeavor. It can be quick and easy, and you can do it just about anywhere.  Watch this video together, and practice massaging other. and incorporating stories.

Create your own stories to make it even more fun. This type of anywhere, anytime massage is especially great for kids with anxiety. Try it at bedtime, or in the morning before school, or even in the waiting room at the dentist.

There you have it! Three ways to be the cool adult in your favorite kid’s life! Book Now!

Massage & Depression

An estimated 1 in 10 adults in the United States suffers from some kind of depression, according to the Centers for Disease Control. That’s around the same percentage of American adults who are left-handed, and yet while handedness is seen today as a quirky curiosity (or sometimes an advantage, in the case of athletes), there is still stigma and silence surrounding depression as an illness. So let’s talk: what is depression? Why is it problematic? And is there anything that can help?

What is depression?

Let’s start with what depression isn’t: a bad day, a brief period of mourning after a loss, or a pessimistic outlook on life. It consists of a period of more than two weeks of a bad mood, decreased interest in things that one normally finds enjoyable, and can also include fatigue, changes in weight, difficulty concentrating, inappropriate guilt, and even suicidal thoughts. While two weeks is the minimum length for defining depression, it can continue for months or even years.

Are there different kinds of depression?

Yes. Major depression is an episode of depression two weeks or longer that messes with your ability to function throughout the day. People can have multiple episodes of major depression throughout their lives. Postpartum depression is a depressive episode that occurs after a woman has given birth. Seasonal Affective Disorder (aptly abbreviated SAD) is a form of depression during the winter months, when there is less sunlight. Manic Depression (also called bipolar disorder) involves cycles of depressive lows and manic highs. There are also mild forms of depression that do not meet all the requirements of major depression.

What are some of the health consequences of depression?

Aside from just feeling like crap on an emotional level (entirely bad enough on its own), depression can also have other serious effects on a person’s health. People who suffer from depression are more likely to engage in negative habits such as smoking and excessive drinking. They are also less likely to get sufficient exercises, and are more likely to stop the physical activities they used to participate in. Depression can disturb sleep schedules and also negatively affect one’s professional and personal relationships, resulting in more stress, which leads to its own host of health issues. It’s a truly nasty cycle.

So why aren’t we all talking about this?

Mental illness has always been something of a taboo subject. Those with more severe problems are seen as crazy and unstable, while those with more mild issues can be accused of making it up for attention, or using the term as an excuse for ordinary laziness. Depression isn’t sexy like breast cancer (boobies!) or have the sorts of clear paths to prevention that lend themselves to awareness campaigns, like HIV. And so we’re left without the sorts of public conversations that in turn become private ones between friends. It’s easy to ask a friend if she’s taking painkillers for her broken leg. Asking her if she’s considered antidepressants? Not so much

Is there anything that helps with depression?

Absolutely, and the first step is diagnosis. (Sorry, looking up your symptoms on Google doesn’t count.) A physician will be able to speak intelligently about options like therapy, medication, and other treatments and lifestyle changes.

Oh, and you might also want to get a massage.

Massage for depression? Really?

Absolutely. Massage has been found to reduce depression and improve mood in people of all stripes, from children with HIV, to adolescents with psychiatric disorders, to hospice patients. Why does this work? Well, that’s still being researched. The what is often much easier than the why. But caring touch does seem to have a real effect on mood, whether it’s from a loved one, a massage therapist, or a favorite pet.

Of course, if you’re a regular recipient of massage, you can judge for yourself: is your mood improved after a massage? And if you haven’t received a massage lately (or ever!), this is a great opportunity. Do it for science! Or, do it for yourself. Because everyone deserves to feel better, including you. Book Now!

Massage and Anxiety

Anxiety Disorders affect about 40 million American adults in a given year. Anxiety is described as a feeling of dread, fear, or apprehension often with no clear justification. Most people experience symptoms of anxiety at one time or another, but for those with a disorder, normal daily life is often interrupted and limited.

A few common anxiety disorders are panic disorder, Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD), social phobia (Social Anxiety), and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. While there are varying symptoms with each, many physiological responses overlap with the different disorders. Many people are able to function with symptoms while others are unable cope with them.

Some disorders manifest with physical symptoms like sleeping problems, shortness of breath, heart palpitations, nausea, sweating or dry mouth. Others are purely emotional, denoted by  excessive, unrealistic worry, feelings of panic, fear, and uneasiness. Usually, there’s a combination of physical and emotional symptoms.

Massage may help anxiety

The American Massage Therapy Association has adopted a position statement based on research findings asserting that “massage therapy can assist in reducing the symptoms of anxiety.” It goes on to say that massage may reduce symptoms of anxiety in women in labor, psychiatric patients, cancer patients, patients with Generalized Anxiety Disorder, children with illnesses, and many more types of clients.

The effects of massage therapy include reduced blood pressure, slowed/regulated breathing, and a slower pulse rate. If increased heart rate and rapid breathing are symptoms of anxiety could massage therapy may have a positive effect. Simply taking time to relax and removing yourself from the busy-ness of daily life can be helpful in handling some kinds of anxiety.

Those with more complicated anxiety issues may benefit from regular massage in conjunction with talk therapy, medication, and lifestyle changes.

Ask questions

If you are unsure about trying massage to help your anxiety, ask questions. Call me and we can talk about your experience with massage and how it may help you. Check in with your health care provider and your therapist or counselor. (Be sure to let me know if they would like more information about massage and anxiety, I can provide that!)

When you’re ready, we’ll schedule an appointment <<link here to scheduling or contact info>> and you can see firsthand how massage may help you.Book Now

5 Tips for Active Aging

Everybody talks about active aging, but not everybody knows what it’s supposed to look like. Working to stay happy and healthy as we get older shouldn’t be a drag, something done to slow an inevitable decline into decrepitude. Some things get better and better with age! While the grocery store magazine rack offers all kinds of tips for getting a bikini bod or looking 20 forever, there’s not much actual health advice anyone ought to be taking. So here are five tips for keeping active with each amazing birthday.

1. Keep moving, in whatever ways work for you. Don’t limit yourself.

However you choose to stay active, make sure it’s something you enjoy. Being miserable while you move is not a great way to stay motivated! If being happy in motion means finding a salsa dance partner who can keep up with you all night long, don’t worry about the fact that the rest of your friends are more into yoga or golf. Don’t let assumptions about your age keep you away from the judo dojo, skating rink, or climbing wall.

The other part of “what works for you” is feasibility. Walking is something you can do right on your own street, or even at the local Home Depot if there’s three feet of snow on the ground. No fancy equipment or gym membership necessary! If you’re really into dance but your joints don’t appreciate the intensity, think about water aerobics or even a synchronized swimming group. If an activity truly doesn’t fit into your schedule or lifestyle very often, there’s no reason you can’t try it out. But for the other 364 days of the year, do something that makes sense for you.

2. Not every health and wellness issue is about “just getting older.” Ask questions and get honest answers.

Sometimes, people like to wave away problems as a normal part of getting older. But just because people say it doesn’t necessarily make it the truth! For years people have passed around myths like the idea that sarcopenia (age-related muscle loss) is an inevitable part of getting older. But recent studies people of all ages can maintain, even build strength and muscle. Flexibility and cardiovascular fitness don’t have to fall by the wayside either!

Of course, it’s no secret that our bodies do change over time. This is where the asking questions part comes in. So ask your doctor, a personal trainer, a massage therapist, or whatever experts you have at hand, and get the answers you need. Will swimming make the arthritis in my shoulder worse? How does this medicine affect my heart rate? Is it normal to feel this sore two days after lifting weights?

3. Don’t just ignore it.

You know what the “it” is for you. Those headaches that seem to be getting worse, the stress, the way you feel out of breath carrying groceries up the stairs. If you see a physician about it, you might find that it’s actually something quite fixable. Maybe all you need is a change of medication, better posture when lifting, or a massage. Maybe it’s something a bit more involved, like a change in your activity level or cutting back on smoking. But knowledge is power, and ignoring the issue just guarantees you don’t have the power to make those choices for yourself.

4. Health doesn’t just mean physical health, and “active” doesn’t just mean physically active.

So often we think about health and wellness as an issue of the body, and forget about the importance of mental health as well. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, depression affects 6.5 million Americans over the age of 65. This often goes undiagnosed for the same reason physical illnesses do: people assume that these feelings are a normal part of aging, and so they don’t seek help.

Being active in a variety of ways also helps fend off depression and anxiety. Strong friendships, regular touch, physical activity (yeah, that again), and working towards goals are all important for maintaining mental health. Be an active community member by volunteering, voting, and working to keep your neighborhood welcoming, safe, and clean. Keep your mind active by taking a class or learning a new skill. If you find yourself suffering from depression or other form of mental illness, take an active role in getting the right treatment; therapy or medication can be a huge help when it feels like nothing will.

5. Being active and independent doesn’t mean never asking for assistance.

Everybody needs help. Kids need help. Parents need help. Athletes and firefighters and librarians and piano teachers all need help. Sometimes it’s easy to feel like if you ask for help, everything you’ve built for yourself (and by yourself!) will crumble, leaving you at the mercy of those who would take on responsibility for your life. But worst-case scenarios are rarely useful in planning for the real world. Book Now

What kind of help would be useful in staying active and healthy? A walking buddy? A lift to the gym? An encouraging phone call once a week? Maybe a professional could help. A personal trainer, counselor, or coach might be just what you need. Sometimes help comes in the form of a holiday gift, an evening of conversation over a tasty meal, or a great book on indefinite loan. The greatest thing about accepting help is that it shows you how you can turn right around and help someone else most effectively.

How to Offer Support to Families Dealing with Cancer

healing_energy

Families are in the trenches fighting cancer every day. If cancer hasn’t crossed your path, whether directly or through a loved one, consider yourself lucky. It’s easy to feel helpless when friends and people close to you are struggling. Since September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, we’re going to give you some simple things you can do to help those who are facing the dreaded “C” word.

Do. Don’t ask.

It’s easy to say, “let me know if you need anything.” What the family needs is someone to say, “hey, I’m making you dinner.” Or “I’m babysitting – just tell me what day (or night).” Don’t give them the burden of asking. Just offer it.

Gift cards go a long way.

Treatments can sometimes take a patient and family far from home. Do a little research and purchase gift cards for restaurants, hotel chains and gas stations near the hospital they are using. A gift subscription to Amazon Prime or Netflix may be helpful to someone who is bedridden. Some downtime and low key entertainment might be just what they need. And, of course, a massage gift certificate [Buy Now!]  is a perfect way to care for the care givers.

Remember the siblings.

Cancer affects the entire family. Siblings often are trying to navigate many emotions like fear and jealousy. Commit to a sibling and offer to be there for them. Be a friend. Be someone they can lean on and talk to. If you send the cancer patient a gift, make sure you give them someone of equal to the sibling and include them.

Show up

Shortly after diagnosis, a family will receive calls, cards, and meals. Anything to help soothe the heartbreaking news. After time, these things fade away and the family is still traveling the long road. It could be months or even years. It’s a financial and emotional weight. Keep them in mind and reach out well after the dust settles.

It’s hard to know what to say to a family that’s struggling with cancer. But don’t disappear. Meet them where they are. Sometimes there are no words. Just be present.  Reach out and enlist the help of others to send cards, letters and other nice/silly/fun things that will brighten the family’s day. Even an “I’ve been thinking of you” text speaks volumes.

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These tips might not seem like much, but it can mean the world to a family facing cancer. Long days and sleepless nights can be an endless cycle. Little gestures of kindness can bring the family loads comfort.

5 Ways to Celebrate National Women’s Health and Fitness Day

September 30th is National Women’s Health and Fitness Day. Hundreds of organizations countrywide will be hosting a variety of noncompetitive events covering everything from group walks to health seminars.

In the spirit of this holiday, we’ve put together a list of 5 ways you can celebrate women’s health and fitness – regardless if there’s an organization participating near you.

Go inward

Good health starts within. Too often our lives are so busy that we forget to remember ourselves. Spend a little time thinking about what you want for yourself and what fits your wellness goals. Practicing yoga, meditation, and even a daily drawing habit can help push you toward a more healthful and balanced life.

Go outward

If working on the inner stuff is important, it’s just as vital to do things in an outward fashion too. Take a long walk, go for a hike, play a sport, go out dancing or even meeting up with friends can have a major impact on your emotional well being.

Learn something new

There is nothing like stepping out of your comfort zone. It might be stretch and sometimes a little uncomfortable, but those growing pains can pay off. Try taking a new fitness class, learn about Ayurveda, tinker with a new craft… anything outside your normal routine has the ability to encourage growth, which opens our eyes and sometimes new doors.

Eat

Eating healthfully might look good on paper, but once you’re in the thick of it, it may be challenging. Be gentle with yourself. Learn a new recipe, take a cooking class, educate yourself on the types of foods you consume. Find out where your food comes from and don’t be afraid to ask questions. Eat because it nourishes your body and find healthy foods that taste good!

Get a massage

What better way to celebrate a holiday than with a massage? The benefits of massage can’t be overstated. Massage can help everything from an old sports injury, scar tissue, stress relief, headaches, fibromyalgia, TMJ, anxiety/depression or just good ole’ health and wellness maintenance. Book Now – http://www.myomassage.massagetherapy.com

But really, there is no reason to wait for a holiday to focus on your health and wellness. Each day is a chance to celebrate YOU and your health and good well-being is part of that.