The Look Good Feel Better Blog
Today we bring you the third installment from our guest blogger Jane Wilkens Michael, host of the Jane Wilkens Michael Show…Better Than Before.
During this holiday season many years ago I discovered my mission – my passion – in life. I found that in helping others to become Better Than Before, I might truly make a difference. And for my family, friends, readers and CBS radio audience, it is the gift that has kept on giving. I am continually inspired whenever they thank me for guiding them, either in person, print or on the air, onward and upward on the Ladder to a Better Quality of life, as part of their journey to looking and feeling Better Than Before.
I find it particularly encouraging, though, when the cancer survivors among them tell me how they are now able to view themselves in a new light, even after all they have endured. “Physically, emotionally and spiritually I may have been through the ringer,” one breast cancer survivor recently shared with me. “But I truly surprised myself that I emerged on the other side a much stronger person.” She told me that she now has a far greater appreciation for life and how simple acts of kindness can be so empowering. “I am also looking through a different lens now and I am grateful for that. Even my scars don’t have a negative connection anymore. They remind me of everything I’ve been through and I’m still here. I no longer focus on how sick and weak I was, but how strong I am now.”
It is important to remember that the road to a better quality of life is paved with the small decisions that we make each day. Lasting benefits rarely come from dramatic changes. Therefore, start by taking baby steps. And find a task that you know you are able to easily accomplish. Even the smallest action you can do to move forward creates the positive momentum that propels you up the Better Than Before ladder.
Think of the Japanese word Kaizen. It is actually made up of two words, “kai” meaning change, and ‘zen’ to make good or make better. Therefore, we should make an effort to continuously improve each day through tiny, incremental changes. Granted, depression, anxiety and stress are always hovering around. It’s how we handle those challenges, however, that makes us succeed — or succumb! Try to focus on what’s positive in your world and not dwell on what could go wrong. I found that most life-altering events, good or bad, can help us progress on the path to where we want to go. So even if they are not what we expected, it’s important to learn from them and become a stronger person because of them. No matter what we are dealt in life, we can find a way to work through it. Never give up.
Start by simply visualizing a twelve- rung ladder. Then familiarize yourself with each of the Lifestyle Disciplines — in other words, the Rungs. Think of a quick tip for each that you have found helpful or would like to try. For example, was there a makeup suggestion from the Look Good Feel Better website? Or a recipe that you could slip into the Creative Rung? For the Healthy Home Rung, try reciting this mantra as soon as you wake up: Every day in every way I am feeling Better Than Before. For the Support Rung, saying “I love you”—whether to your spouse, a friend, your caregiver or your kids—is a bona fide mood lifter and stress reducer. And when you say “thank you,” you increase your optimism and boost your immune system.
So with the New Year rapidly approaching, remember to let go of all anger and resentment; and, most importantly, try to be kind to yourself – after all, you’re the only self you have! Finally, as you begin your climb, never forget three important life lessons: Love deeply, forgive quickly, and above all, try to become just a little Better Than Before.
We are so excited to share with you the lovely and heartfelt words of Anjanette below after she observed a workshop a few weeks ago in New York City. Anjanette is the Founder & CEO of SKY and LIVI a jewelry company that empowers women battling cancer by transforming their hair lost in chemo into their very own personal lab-grown diamond. SKY and LIVI has partnered with LGFB and will be donating $100 from the sale of every diamond, and $10 from every bracelet sold to the program in 2013.
Thank you Anjanette for everything you do for the program!
“Last week I had the amazing opportunity to be an observer at a LGFB Workshop at the Hope Lodge in NYC. To say that this experience was special is an understatement. I witnessed four strangers walk into a room with one thing in common - they all had cancer. They had varying personalities, in different stages of treatment and places emotionally, but all walked out of the workshop with another thing in common - HOPE…accented with a beautiful smile of course! Seeing each woman transform themselves before our eyes was magical. Elizabeth, my dear friend and Sarcoma survivor attended with me and we both were so moved to witness this moment. It was even more clear to me how important a role LGFB plays. The act of these four beautiful women transforming themselves and taking the time to learn with other women who are “like them” is something that just can’t be measured. I’m so honored to be a small part in helping LGFB do what they do.”
Want to help Look Good, Feel Better continue to help women feel beautiful and look better every day? Vote for us on the EcoTools Gives Back, Living Beautifully contest and we could win up at $75,000 in grant money from EcoTools.
The contest runs from now until July 5 and you can vote on the EcoTools Facebook page up to FIVE times per day! Happy voting!
Look Good Feel Better would like to give a BIG thank you to Kelsey, who in February 2013 raised over $2,000 for the program by organizing a 5K race in her community. She named her event the HOPE Run, which stands for “Helping to Open People’s Eyes” to the physical and emotional effects of cancer. Kelsey plans on organizing another 5K race in her community soon.
If you or someone you know would like to organize a community event to benefit the LGFB program, please contact email@example.com, so we can help answer your questions and provide you with all the information you need to help make your event a success.
Thank you again Kelsey, we are so touched by your generosity towards others!