Life is crazy. We don’t have time.
We’ve got lunches to make, bills to pay, laundry to fold, dates to organize, and too many awesome shows on Netflix.
When we’ve finally got a moment to sit down and breathe, we check our phone. Wrong move. Social media is a time-eating monster.
How do we survive it all with sanity intact?
That’s where natural health expert Dr. Kathy Gruver has some advice.
Dr. Gruver is host of the TV series “The Alternative Medicine Cabinet” as well as the book of the same name. Her TEDx talk has been viewed over 66,000 times.
She’ll have you laughing with her smart, savvy tips on how to make it through the minefield of modern life.
What You’ll Learn
We’ve been told that we can do it all, which is awesome. But now we try to, and we actually can’t. We cannot do it all.”
Once upon a time, life was easy.
You worried about getting eaten by saber-toothed tigers or finding shelter so you wouldn’t freeze.
Luckily, you had this neat feature built into your body called the stress response.
It gave you a quick burst of energy to do what you needed to do to survive. Once the danger passed, you returned to normal.
Modern life doesn’t feature saber-toothed tigers, but it does feature bosses and teachers and deadlines and bills and a whole bunch of other stressors. Unlike dangers in the ancient world, these stressors don’t go away.
“It’s this crazy stuff that’s just not ceasing,” Dr. Gruver explains. “And that’s bad for our digestion, our sexual response, our memory, our cognitive function, our immune system. So, over time, all of this stress is going to lead to us getting sick and not being as productive—losing our minds, basically!”
So we’re stuck.
We live in a world where stress is coming at us from every angle, and there’s nowhere to hide.
But there is one thing we can do:
We can stop reacting and start responding.
Stress isn’t really the problem. It’s our response to the stress.”
Normally, when stress comes at you, you have a knee-jerk reaction. Dr. Gruver recommends this instead:
Take a pause.
Before you react, stop yourself. Breathe. Take your finger off the button. Do not push send.
But isn’t that the opposite of what modern life requires of us?
Aren’t we supposed to be laser-fast, finger-on-the-button, ready to jump on the good stuff before someone else gets it?
That’s certainly how we’ve been trained by social media. We’re hooked on our phones, because they give us that instant reward we don’t get in normal life.
“We gotta put the phone down,” Dr. Gruver advises. “We have to take that break.”
What You Should Be Doing to Take Care of Yourself
Stress management and self-care go hand in hand.
We’ve got to take care of ourselves physically as well as emotionally. That means incorporating self-care into your daily routine, not putting it off until you have vacation time.
This means eating real food, drinking plenty of water, taking time to breathe, and nourishing yourself mentally and emotionally. Turn off the TV and disengage from drama.
Just the way we’re putting good things in our body, we want to put good things in our brain.”
Dr. Gruver offers a simple mini-meditation. She even shows us how you can use washing the dishes as a mindfulness practice.
She finishes by leading us through good sleep hygiene and tips to get a better night sleep. And, yes, a good night’s sleep means putting that phone to bed, too.
Jump to Topics of Interest
02:29 The consequences of a stressful life
04:06 Stress isn’t the problem, but rather how we respond to it
05:26 How do you break the habit of reacting in the age of social media?
07:14 Why you get sick on that first day of vacation
08:13 The bare minimum you should be doing to take care of yourself
09:57 Mini meditation technique
10:48 How to mindfully wash the dishes
12:05 Pros and cons of rumination
13:46 Key to breaking negative thoughts
14:31 How to get a good night’s sleep
17:12 “The Alternative Medicine Cabinet” book and TV series
18:36 You have a choice
About Dr. Kathy Gruver
Dr. Gruver is a natural health practitioner with over 2 decades of experience and a Ph.D. in Natural Health. She’s also an award-winning author, TEDx speaker, and host of the TV series “The Alternative Medicine Cabinet.” In her free time, Dr. Gruver does flying trapeze and hip hop dance. Find out more.