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Request for Listener Topic Ideas

I’ve been thinking about years ago when I did a lot of television, radio, and public speaking and how much I enjoyed answering audience questions.  I especially enjoyed call-in radio shows.  And while my podcast (BEST LIFE University) is not this format, I would like to have listeners write to me with questions, concerns, and…

A3 for Inner Peace

A3 for Inner Peace Lynn Borenius Brown, EdD, LPC For quite a while, I’ve been talking to my clients about the three A’s.  Since I spend my working life talking with individuals who are going through various situations and dealing with a wide variety of personal issues, it is vital, I believe, to be able…

 Do What You Know is Personally-Appropriate

 It doesn’t matter what others think, do, or say. The only opinion that matters when it comes to you is the opinion you believe is personally-appropriate for you and whom you see yourself as being. Never forget this. Always act on it.  In what situations/experiences do you find yourself ignoring your values (life rules) and…

Cultural Norms

Cultural Norms The term “culture” is defined as the concepts, habits, skills, and institutions of a given people in a given period. The term “norm” means a standard or pattern for a group.  Norms exist for the continued functioning of the group, the meaning of life and the motivation for survival, the maintenance of order,…

INTENTIONAL WEIGHT MANAGEMENT – Apples and Pears

Apples and Pears  As I indicated earlier, heredity seems to influence where fat settles.  And, there are two general body shapes:  apples and pears.  Apples, mostly men, have beer-belly profiles, carrying the extra pounds in the upper torso and around the abdomen.  Pears, usually women, collect excess weight below the waist, in chunky hips, fannies,…

INTENTIONAL WEIGHT MANAGEMENT – Fat Cells

Fat Cells  Adults have between 30 and 40 billion fat cells.  They swell and shrink like sponges depending upon the amount of fat inside them.  They may become very small, but they never disappear. Fat cells are as protected as brain cells during starvation.  The explanation has to do with the distant past when famines…

INTENTIONAL WEIGHT MANAGEMENT – Heredity

Heredity  Overweight parents tend to produce overweight offspring even when their baby is adopted and raised by a thin couple.  And, identical twins remain remarkably close in weight until early puberty, when environmental factors exert a strong pull.  Heredity seems to be particularly influential in where fat settles.  It also determines the strategy your body…

Who is Lynn Brown?

If you’d like to know more about Lynn, here is the link to her website:  https://www.lynnbbrowneddlpc.com/

WHY BestLife21?

After emerging from more than a year of quarantine, solitude, and an unusual year in general, for me 2021 represented a new beginning; an opportunity to move forward instead of returning to what was. This was the time to start anew, to edit, to heal, to grow! So in honor of this most special time in…

Living with a Chronic Illness

Photo credit:mecfsghost.com Although those in my life know who I am (my history, ethics, values, etc.) so I feel safe and respected and most everyone I encounter treats me the same way, on occasion I interact with someone who is clearly ignorant of what it is like to have a chronic illness – particularly one…

You are always on a path – you are never lost

One of the definitions of the word “path” in Merriam-Webster is “the continuous series of positions or configurations that can be assumed in any motion or process of change by a moving or varying system”.  There is much to be discussed within these words.  However, right now I will focus on the idea of “continuous…

Best Life Publications

Why the rainbow logo?

People have been curious as to why I use a rainbow as my logo. Good question. Here are my thoughts: Rainbows occur after rain.  For me, this implies that rain is needed for the true beauty of life to be experienced.  Rain is the metaphor for life’s experiences that we tend to arbitrarily and hastily…

Difficult People and Situations Assist In Our Growth

We define people and situations as difficult because they are noncompliant with our current perceptions.  As a result, they make us self-conscious which causes us to become aware of our being and as a result, our thoughts and actions. The discomfort of being in the noncompliant experience compels us to take a look at our…

Adversity Can Be a Great Gift

We usually define “adversity” as difficulty and “gift” as endowment; something that is free.  And we are almost always surprised when confronted with adversity, somehow believing that difficulty should never come into our lives.  It is viewed as something to get rid of as quickly as possible because it is just plain bad, with no…

Kindness

Kindness is usually defined as a quality that incorporates the ideas of friendliness, warmth, and being cooperative. For me, the words benevolence and grace come to mind.  Kindness enacts the results of caring about the well-being of others and behaving in such a way that everyone feels safe, accepted and understood. This attribute shows respect…

Life Is Just One Thing After Another – How You Choose to React Is Up to You

Life renews every half-second, so we have seemingly countless opportunities to start again – to decide how we want our future to look.  Because life keeps moving forward, it ends up actually being just one thing after another.  But, this is good. By acknowledging and taking advantage of the fact that life is constantly renewing, we then…

What We Imagine About Ourselves Tends to Become Real

There is no one reality.  Each of us is responsible for determining what ours is going to be and we base this upon what we were taught in childhood, combined with what we have learned on our own, from others, as well as our experiences.  And it is influenced by our inherent personality. When we imagine, we…

Understanding Only Comes From Doing

To understand is to be thoroughly familiar with, to comprehend clearly the subtleties of, and grasp the significance, implications, or importance of something.  Using this definition, it becomes difficult to acknowledge that we truly understand much. To do is to accomplish – and to accomplish is to carry out, bring to conclusion, to perfect. Therefore, it…

Wisdom is Understanding that Judgment is Not Possible, Nor Necessary

Wisdom is knowledge of what is true, coupled with insight.  Judgment is a verdict or conclusion.  Whenever we participate in assessing someone else or a situation, we are, by default, never going to fully know every facet of this person or the situation and so we are going to be functioning without full information. As a result,…

We Cause Most of Our Own Problems

Life evolves – reality is new every half-second – one event occurs after another.  This relentless pattern never stops.  The only influence we have is our attitude that results in action. The existence of problems is due to many factors that all converge to the concept of expectation.  It is our perceived need to influence others and outcomes…

Action Turns Knowledge Into Wisdom

When we know something intellectually, we have an idea of what it is.  We are able to speak of it in theory and we believe we know of what we speak. However, we do not completely understand it because we have not experienced it. Of course, there is always some of what we know that cannot be…

Unexpressed Emotion is Stored As Tension

As we go through each day, we experience emotions; some we welcome and others we don’t.  These feelings arise from our interpretation of external events as well as our thoughts.  And we have all been taught to forego, to suppress, the expression of at least some of our emotions in order to conform to society…

Difficulties Are Disguised Opportunities

We truly desire that each day will go as we planned and assume that our ideas about this are correct so they are all we need.  However, as we all know, this doesn’t happen.  Before we know it, our well-laid plans go awry.  And usually we view the detours as difficulties. It is important to…

No Two People Experience the Same Reality

Constantly, events are occurring in our environment and we notice some of them.  We respond, even if only internally.  And we assume that everyone else noticed what did and saw what we saw. But, this is not so. Whenever something happens in our environment, our filtering system determines what we ultimately experience.  Our filtering system…

Be In the Now – Be Present

Planning, reminiscing, worrying, longing………  There are so many words we use to describe how we are living at any given moment.  Unfortunately, so often these words refer either to the past or the future.  And while it is important to heal from our past and to plan for the future, it is also vital that…

One Benefit to Self-Acceptance is the Freedom to Make Faulty Choices

What is self-acceptance?  It is satisfaction with self; a realistic awareness of one’s strengths and weaknesses that results in a feeling of inherent worth.  Self-acceptance allows for the freedom to heal, learn, and grow.  Without realizing inherent worth, one feels unworthy of the gift of achieving in life. When self-acceptance reigns, there is peace of…

Thinking Is Always Based in the Past or the Future

We spend our days thinking.  But rarely do we realize that this activity always relates either to the past or the future, even if it is the immediate past or the immediate future.  To ponder this idea feels strange to most of us.  However, it is accurate.  And, all stress comes from thinking because this…

Each Problem or Change Is An Opportunity to Learn

We are continually faced with changes that we often view as problems; sometimes because they actually are issues that have arisen.  But often we define changes as problems just because they are changes and we don’t like change. When faced with either an actual problem or just a change, usually our first response is to…

Mindful Choices Are Always Simple

When living as your True Self, you become Mindful.  Mindfulness is the state of being aware, acknowledging, and accepting of what the True Self is experiencing.  It is allowing what needs to be heard and lived from without ignoring what you may not what to hear and acknowledge.  It is the staying in the moment despite how it…

Change Is Inherent In Life

Each morning, most of us start out with a plan for how we want, expect, our day to evolve.  However, fairly quickly we discover that our idea of how life should be is not as it turns out to be.  And then, we feel powerless. It is important to remember that everything in life is…

Now Is All There Is

We spend much of our lives planning for the future and thinking about our past.  And while I am certainly an advocate of preparing for the future and learning from the past, I believe too many hours are used in this manner. Emotional discomfort exists when we think about the future and the past.  Inner…

Becoming an Assertive Person

To be assertive is to assert oneself.  Webster’s New Universal Unabridged Dictionary defines this as, “to insist on one’s rights, or on being recognized.”  To be assertive is to “own” what you need.  This includes your emotions.  An assertive individual places responsibility for that ownership on him/herself.  This person communicates in such as way that…

Becoming a Positive Person, Part 2

How Can You Go About Changing Your Negative Thoughts and Put Your Life and Problems Into a Realistic Perspective? You need to apply the principles of science to your own thought process.  The first step is awareness.  The second step is answering negative thoughts.  The third step is taking action.  Let’s cover these one at…

Becoming a Positive Person, Part 1

The thoughts we have not only affect our emotional health, but also our physical health.  When we think negatively, our body responds as if it is a tension-filled situation.  The fight-flight response is called into action:  your adrenalin flows, your pulse quickens, and you exhaust yourself. Our thinking patterns are learned or automatic responses developed…

Self-Growth

Building positive self-esteem is a good way to work toward self-growth.  This is done by placing an increased emphasis on your attributes and a decreased emphasis on your weaknesses. We are much too quick to notice our faults and too slow to give ourselves credit for, and acknowledge, our strengths.  By doing so we begin…

Self-Awareness

You have three selves:  public, actual, and ideal.  All of these interact to help you make decisions, with any one of the selves taking priority during different situations.  Problems arise when the discrepancy between any of the selves is too great.  It is difficult to know “who” you are if the selves aren’t at least…

Achieving Psychological Wellness, Part 3

Here are the last six factors that can increase psychological wellness. Touch.  Touch people. Touch animals.  The only way to be sure someone or something exists is to touch it.  Research has shown that infants who do not get held have a higher mortality rate than those who get touched.  And this need never ends. …

Achieving Psychological Wellness, Part 2

Here are six more factors that can increase psychological wellness. Make time daily when no one demands anything of you.  Make room for time when no one needs or pulls at you.  It is important to begin feeling comfortable with being alone.  Most of us are not accustomed to silence and believe that being alone…

Achieving Psychological Wellness, Part 1

Psychological wellness allows you the freedom to live your life as free of self-imposed barriers as possible.  There are fourteen factors that promote the type of wellness that helps us not only make habit and attitude changes, but also give us the unencumbered feeling we all strive to have.  he closer you come to fulfilling…

Stress, Part 2

Hope life hasn’t been too stressful for you!  However, if it was, let’s talk about how you can avoid stress in your life. Here is a list of 15 practical ideas to help you avoid being stressed in our fast-paced world: Get up fifteen minutes earlier than you usually do. Prepare for morning the night…

Stress, Part 1

Stress is any action or situation that places certain physical and/or psychological demands upon you. Stress is necessary to well-being. A lack of it may be harmful. But, stress causes some serious ailments. And research has determined that the stressors we find in modern life are more harmful than those found in the days gone…

Perfectionism, Part 3

Now, let’s talk about how you can begin changing this perfectionist habit. The best way is to use the mental distortions. Start by examining your all-or-nothing thinking. Spend time investigating whether or not the world can be meaningfully evaluated by using this way of thinking. Decide if certain walls are totally clean, if people are…

Perfectionism, Part 2

Perfectionists commonly exhibit three mental distortions that are nonproductive for effectively dealing with daily living. The most common distortion is all-or-nothing thinking.  Perfectionists see everything in a dichotomous manner. To them, everything is either good or bad; right or wrong; black or white.  There are no shades of gray. The second distortion found in perfectionists is over-generalizations. …

Perfectionism, Part 1

Perfectionism is not the pursuit of excellence.  Perfectionists do not get genuine pleasure from striving to meet high standards.  And, perfectionism is not healthy. Perfectionists’ standards are so high they go beyond reach and are not reasonable.  They set impossible goals for themselves.  Their drive to excel is self-defeating. Research has shown that perfectionists are…

Cultural Norms

The term “culture” is defined as the concepts, habits, skills, and institutions of a given people in a given period. The term “norm” means a standard or pattern for a group.  Norms exist for the continued functioning of the group, the meaning of life and the motivation for survival, the maintenance of order, dealing with…

Conflict Resolution

Just as we always hope there will never be problems to solve, we also wish that we could avoid conflict.   Countless times during my lifetime of counseling clients I have heard people say, “I hate conflict so I avoid it.”  Of course, nothing is accomplished if it isn’t addressed. But, since most people never are taught how to do this,…

Problem Solving Skills, Part 2

Last time we identified the four steps in the problem solving process.  I hope you found them a good starting place for becoming better at problem solving.  This week, I’m going to give you the specific questions you want to ask yourself for each of these four steps.  Knowing what to ask is essential to…

Problem Solving Skills, Part 1

Although each day we are faced with the need to solve problems, few of us have ever had the opportunity to actually learn how to effectively do this.  And, the result is usually frustration, anger, and stress.  So, let’s take a bit of time to gain understanding of what is involved in solving problems.  First,…

Communication Skills, Part 2

Congratulations!  You have been working at improving your ability to listen, understand, and provide feedback before moving the conversation forward by expressing.  Now, let’s move on. Even if we are very competent when it comes to expressing, listening, understanding and providing feedback, there is another aspect to communication that, although it is very important, is…

Communication Skills, Part 1

To communicate is to give and receive information.  It is always an interchange – meaning, it is passage from one to another.  This interchange implies that the receiver acquires an understanding of what was sent so there is a sharing. Using this definition of communicating, we discover that more often than not, while we have…

Three Areas of Human Functioning

Although most of us are unaware of this, there are three areas involved in how we operate in life.  And, it is important to become aware of what you are doing in relation to these.  They are:  Think, Feel, and Do. Think – the area of “Think” has to do with what you think.  These…

Values

One’s values indicate what is deemed as worthy, what is esteemed.  Therefore, what you value let’s you know who you are and becomes a guide when making decisions.  Values are important because they allow you to know who it is that’s making the choices and why they are being made.  Let’s take some time to…