Giving the Gift of Health and the Challenge of Giving Health-minded Gifts

Friday, December 9, 2016
We are all on our journey to healthier living. Many of us are challenged with health concerns that require we pay more attention to what we eat and how we live. More of us are faced with weight management and all the health issues that come with being overweight or obese. A growing part of the population, me included, are aging and are seeking ways to maximize our quality of life by embracing a healthy lifestyle.

I have come to truly believe that the greatest gift we can give ourselves and the ones we love is the gift of health. If this is true and we all agree, then why is it so taboo for us to give gifts that support this greatest gift, the gift of health?

As someone who believes we need the tools and environment to support us in the healthy lifestyle we seek-- and went so far as to create a company, Livliga, dedicated toward this end-- I see the need for the conversation to change.  Instead of focusing on the visible symptoms like someone being overweight, why don’t we focus on the solution of healthy living?

 Livliga@ LivSpoons and the Aveq serving bowl
Of course, it is easier when someone asks for those healthy lifestyle tools. I have done a lot of that with my own family. I have asked for a new bike, better work out clothes, a kayak, a Fitbit and lots of cookbooks. By opening the door to acquiring, using and enjoying these healthy lifestyle products it has also encouraged my family and friends to give me cool new gifts I haven’t asked for and didn’t even know about. A great example of this was the online health coach and app “Vida” that my sons gave me for my birthday. Perhaps the greatest gift towards healthy living each of my family members has given me is the gift of support and participation. My husband works out with me every morning at the YMCA, my daughter has done the same and also loves going on walks with me, and my sons go cycling and hiking with me whenever they are home. And when it comes to my clean cooking they are all on board. They happily try out my new healthier recipes and are enthusiastic about the healthy lifestyle products I have created and use everyday in our own lives and at every meal.

So what do we do when we recognize someone could benefit from having healthy lifestyle tools in their life because of health issues or weight issues? Maybe it is about our living a healthy lifestyle and wanting to share it. As someone who has been overweight and on diets on and off for most of my life, I can tell you there is nothing more irritating than having someone tell you what you need or tell you what you need to do without them practicing what they are preaching to you.

It is all about being on the journey together. It is about discovery and having fun with it. It is so much more enjoyable and doable when we share in the journey. Nothing gives me more pleasure than giving a friend a healthy lifestyle cookbook I have tried, liked and use regularly. My new favorite is the America’s Test Kitchen Complete Vegetarian cookbook. Fabulous. I am also delighted to share Livliga product like our LivSpoons that are serving spoons and measuring spoons all in one. In fact, we were using them for Thanksgiving when a friend who was with us brought up how much he loves his LivSpoons and uses then all the time. His favorite is how well they work for him when he makes his weekend waffles; they are perfect for measuring the waffle batter and for serving up the maple syrup, he said. Can’t beat how sharing in a healthy lifestyle with the ones you love makes it a healthier and happier world for all of us to enjoy.

It is possible to change the conversation. Focusing on what is “wrong” with us or others will achieve nothing and may in fact make everyone feel worse. The better, more effective approach is to focus on a way of being that we can all share. The more you do it and the more you share it the more it becomes a natural part of who you are and what you do. A great example of this for me was when I recently traveled back to my hometown, Kansas City. A long time friend of mine I had not seen in a while asked if we could meet up. Instead of asking for a lunch date she asked if we could take a walk in a park. It makes me smile just to think about how wonderful it was to have a friend suggest a fun walk. We had a great time, talked up a storm and managed to walk around the park several times just so we could keep going with the conversation! What a wonderful way of being.

So this holiday season think about how you can give yourself the gift of health and then how you can share it with the ones you love.

Enjoy! And Have a Happy and Healthy Holiday!

ps. Here is our FREE gift to you this holiday season! A delicious holiday baking cook book by the talented Vanessa Musi

Get your free healthy  holiday recipe ebook!

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