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Hospitals trying out Pokemon Go in a clinical setting

Check out this article from Health Leaders Media:

A trial at the University of Washington Medicine Burn Center aims to find out if the game is more stimulating and engaging than the pain patients are experiencing.

Hospitals and health systems have been grappling with how to deal with Pokémon Go since the mobile gaming phenomenon hit earlier this summer.

Massachusetts General Hospital banned staff from playing the game on its campus, warning of possible privacy violations, and Allegheny Health Network asked the game’s maker to remove all of its locations from the app.

But some hospitals are finding that there are upside to patients using Pokémon Go.

Getting Patients Out of Bed

C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital in Ann Arbor, MI, has been urging its young patients to play the game in an effort to get them out of bed and socialize with other kids.

“It’s a fun way to encourage patients to be mobile,” J.J Bouchard, the hospital’s digital media manager and certified child life specialist, told USA Today. “This app is getting patients out of beds and moving around.”

A trial that University of Washington Medicine Burn Center researchers are conducting at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle, WA, is looking at how playing Pokémon Go may help keep patients moving while also taking their minds off the pain.

“Our challenge is to find something that’s more stimulating and engaging than pain they’re experiencing, so something like virtual reality that’s new or Pokémon Go that’s new, it’s more exciting and takes attention away from the pain,” Shelley Wiechman, attending psychologist in the Burn and Pediatric Trauma Service and Pediatric Primary Care Clinic at Harborview, told the local media.

The Pokémon Go trial isn’t the first time the hospital has tested augmented and virtual reality games for pain management, but it’s the first that allows patients to use their legs and keep their infected areas mobile.

Weichman said if patients using the game continue to show progress, the staff may begin using Fitbits to track patients’ steps.

So what do you think? Can mobile games help patients in your hospitals? Let us know what you think in the comments below!

Rock Your Health: How to get what you want every time you ask

I know – that doesn’t sound possible. But how would you like to raise your odds of success?

Have you ever wanted something to happen to improve your life and it just wasn’t happening? No matter how hard you tried? Maybe you were trying too hard and need to slack off a bit. Sometimes we block our desires by pushing too hard and then get frustrated thinking “Why aren’t I getting anywhere? I’m working as hard as I can and getting nowhere.”

Here’s an example. I was teaching a class for teachers on how to bring positivity into the classroom using the Law of Attraction and suddenly realized that as much as I know about all the ways in the world to attract great things to my life, I still don’t always practice them. This class became a reminder of that, so I’d like to share with you five tips to help you do less, feel better and attract more.

Here are some tips to get you started.

  • First decide what desire you want to manifest for yourself
  • Create a Vision Board that represents what your desire looks like and display it where you see it every day
  • Schedule time every day to focus on your desire in a relaxed state
  • Practice techniques you enjoy daily that relax you like meditation, yoga, Tai Chi, exercise, listening to relaxing music, etc.
  • Keep a journal of all the things you start manifesting as proof that it works

Now you will be on your way to getting what you want (almost) every time you ask. I would love to hear your comments about this.

Rock Your Health: Need some spirit boosters to break free from the routine of work?

  • Turn OFF negative chatter on the news – it feeds into a “down feeling.”
  • Turn ON great music and read, relax, dance – whatever the music moves you to do.
  • Register for an online course or a webinar that is educational, uplifting, and inspiring.
  • Start cleaning, one drawer at a time to reduce clutter and open up space.
  • Call friends to catch up – one or two a week is a good dose.
  • Create home cooked meals, sit around a table together and have great conversation.
  • Start dreaming and planning your next getaway.
  • Gather unwanted things – take to Goodwill and ponder how someone else will love having what you don’t need anymore.
  • Do a favor for someone without telling them and imagine how good it makes them feel!
  • When all else fails, write down 25 things you are grateful for. This works every time!

Rock Your Health: Three cravings you must have

  • Craving to meet new like-minded people and expand your circle of friends
  • Craving to make a difference in other people’s lives
  • Craving to get healthier yourself

Now if that sounds like something you can commit to, and you don’t mind taking the time and energy to make that happen, then you are in the right place right now.

As I ended my traditional nursing career in the corporate world and branched out on my own, I realized I still had more to offer and craved these three things. I never saw myself retired, so I knew I had to create a new path for myself that would still be fulfilling personally, but would also allow me to continue making a difference in the health and wellness of others. The path I chose fell into place because I was OPEN TO POSSIBILITIES and was WILLING TO TAKE CALCULATED RISKS.

If you are at such a crossroads as this, then I have 8-STEPS that moved me forward into a place of new challenges, renewed energy, exciting possibilities, more relationships, and support than at any other time in my life, more fun and travel, better health (I thought I was super healthy, but found out I could do even better) and even opened a path to financial security (that was a bonus!). Believe me, this was a welcome surprise to me and I felt rejuvenated and ready to tackle a NEW BEGINNING in life. So are you ready for a new beginning?

Email me to request a FREE download of my 8-STEP PLAN FOR A NEW BEGINNING.

Rock Your Health: Overcoming the “Summertime Blues” with a wellness twist

We’re halfway through summer and I’ve had more hot dogs, cakes, s’mores, barbecues, and party dinners then I handle. It’s all good because I get to celebrate with friends and family, but I’m feeling out of control with my eating.

Wouldn’t this be a great time to reassess our healthy lifestyle choices and maybe consider tweaking a little bit? Here’s an idea for you. I do a brief wellness review twice a year to see how I’m doing about staying on a healthy path. I also use this as a tool for all my coaching clients as they embark on a new lifestyle path, so it might be very helpful for you right now as well.

Just email me to get a free download so you can do your own reassessment to start getting back on track and ready for fall. Have fun with this!

Rock Your Health: 10 Life lessons from the blackberry patch

Picking blackberries is my ZEN thing to do in the summer, as it takes me away from the usual city stuff and allows me to become re-connected to nature and who I am. And since I am also a Life Coach, I see the application of my experience to those of you who might like to do some soul searching as well.

Here are my thoughts on the experience of picking in the patch. YOU can decide how this can apply to your life.

B – Be prepared before you enter the patch.

Shorts and tank tops are not picking attire. Blackberries grow on long prickly vines that not only scratch me easily, but can wrap around my ankles and trip me if I start moving too fast. I prepare and protect myself with long-sleeved shirts and pants, preferably denim, socks, and shoes, no sandals.

L- Listen to the sounds of the woods for guidance.

If birds are chirping pleasantly, bugs are buzzing around making a lazy sound, leaves are fluttering in the breeze and I feel calm, then all is well. At a moment’s notice, however, I have heard a screech or a squawk or a fast rustling thru the woods and know that something is up! It’s amazing if I don’t have the distraction of all the “people noise” that the sounds of nature are there to guide my survival in very basic ways.

A – Analyze your next move before you take the first step.

Before I start to pick, I scan the entire patch and get the big picture of how I will proceed. Where is the best entry point that provides the easiest access, has the least amount of entanglements and yields the biggest return. This is a “prickly” venture and can lead to a lot of scratches, so I need to be strategic and move carefully as I proceed.

C – Check behind you often.

Sometimes when I keep moving forward as I pick, I only see one side of what is available. When I turn around periodically, I see more berries that I might have missed if I were always looking forward. I like to use the “turning technique” by planting my feet in one spot and picking in all directions before I move on, so I can see all the angles.

K – Keep moving deeper into the patch.

The best is yet to come. The first glance does not reveal the true bounty that lies within. As you go deeper, you start developing the “eye” for what you are looking for and you start seeing more of what is there than you originally thought. And berries always appear smaller from a distance, so when you get up close and personal, you really can see how big and beautiful they really are. Of course moving deeper into the patch means more vines, more stickers, more scratches, but no pain – no gain. It is well worth it to forge ahead.

B – Berries that fall to the ground before you get to them are a gift.

Two things are happening here. If you get overly greedy and try to pick too many berries at once with your hand, there might be overflow and they might fall out of your hand and onto the ground. The positive spin on this is that there might be a critter on the ground that had a wonderful berry drop from the heavens right down to the ground in front of it – and it perceives it as a gift! So instead of getting frustrated when you lose the perfect berry, think of the joy that critter feels when it appeared.

E – Expect to experience some pain

I never make it out of the patch without a few scratches, mainly on my hands with exposed skin, but if I pick slowly and steadily and avoid quick moves, I keep it to a minimum. There will be times when you are tempted by a beautiful cluster of ripe berries to reach farther than you should, and then it is easy to get off balance and fall, or pull a muscle. Again, slow, deliberate, and calculated movements reduce the possibility of pain and suffering.

R – Rejoice over the experience.

Appreciate the bounty you are harvesting, how nature provides such delicious and nourishing treats, that you have taken the time to be with nature, be with yourself and be “one with the berries”. The best stress management tool there is for grounding and it’s all FREE.

R – Ripe berries have the best flavor and are easiest to pick.

The biggest berries are the ripest and sweetest, and they are the easiest to pick. When you hit on a cluster of them all ripe and ready, you can cup your hand around the whole bundle and they slide easily off the vine and into your hand. Very smooth! Most of the time the biggest and ripest are found in the shade or hidden among leaves, so when you find them they are a complete surprise. I always get excited when I find them – and usually shout out to my picking partners – “I’ve found the mother load!” So always keep your eyes open when picking, because the best berries might not be in full view, they might even be very low under a lot of brush and you might have to look a little harder to find them.

Y – Young berries need more time to mature

Just because a berry looks ripe doesn’t mean it is. You’ll know right away if it is ready to be picked because if it hangs on tight to the vine and you can’t easily guide it off, it’s not ready. A gentle tug will tell you if it is time or not. If you start pulling too hard you could mash it and then it is of no value to anyone.

So if you want to coach yourself today, ask yourself – How does this apply to your life?

Animal therapy not just for patients

We hear all the time about how nursing is one of the most stressful professions in the country. This combined with the struggles with nurse retention has led a few hospitals to get creative with helping out their stressed-out nurses: Animal therapy sessions.

Animal therapy has been used with patients for years, particularly to help patients with trauma and mental health disorders. Inspired by these results, executives at University of Pennsylvania hospital and Rush University Medical Center (RUMC) instituted regular animal therapy sessions for their employees. Penn’s “pet a pooch” program was instituted by ER nurse Heather Matthew, brought in dogs from local shelters to spend time with their employees. In addition to helping the stressed-out staff, over a dozen dogs have been adopted since the program started three years ago.

After seeing the positive effects of Penn’s program, RUMC started their own program called “Pet Pause.” Hospital staff immediately reported feeling less stressed after their animal therapy sessions, and an internal study confirmed that the sessions lowered participants blood pressure and increased staff morale. Studies elsewhere have shown that animal therapy reduces stress hormones, and management researchers have found improvements in employee satisfaction and productivity when dogs are allowed in the workplace.

Do you have paws program at your facility? Let us know in the comments!

For more information, check out the Chicago Tribune article.

Rock Your Health: Top 5 Reasons Why SUGAR RULES When You Can’t Lose Weight and What You Can Do About It


Getting CLEAR about solutions!

C – Create a Relapse-Proof Environment

This is the first step when you are trying to stop your “sugar madness”.  If you feel you are addicted to sugar and can’t get away from it, clean up your environment and remove all these highly-processed carbohydrates from your home, your office, your car, and anywhere else you may be tempted to eat them.  If they are right there when you become hungry, you will make a poor food choice every time.  But, if you have good quality, low-glycemic food and snacks available when you are hungry, it really is not that difficult to eat correctly. You must not only protect your environment but also plan ahead so that you have healthy food choices available at all times.

Ask yourself – What do I need to do to create a sugar-free zone to support my efforts to reduce my sugar intake?

L – Learn About Sugar

Carbohydrate-rich foods are the primary source of energy for all body functions so we must eat some daily in addition to protein and fat.  Sugars are simple carbohydrates that can be easily digested by your body and include foods like cake, soda, sweets and highly processed foods.  We call them “fast” carbs.  Over 80-90% of carbohydrates consumed by adults and children today are simple-sugars, also called high-glycemic.

Complex carbohydrates take longer to be digested and include foods such as whole grain products, fruits and vegetables. We call them “slow carbs”. Both types of carbohydrates are broken down into sugar for the body to use and both cause blood sugar to rise, however complex carbohydrates raise the blood sugar slowly and simple carbohydrates raise it quickly.  It is that fast rising blood sugar called “spiking” that causes all the health problems.

Ask yourself – What facts about sugar do I need so I can make wise decisions about my intake?

E – Examine Your Relationship with Sugar

Do you think you might have an addiction to sugar?  You probably think sugar addiction is about lack of willpower or discipline or motivation. It is not. It is about your biochemistry. You were born with a body that responds to sugar, alcohol and refined carbohydrates differently than other people. You are sugar sensitive. Sugar acts like a drug in your body. In fact, it affects the very same brain chemicals that morphine, heroin and amphetamines.

Ask yourself – What is my experience with sugar and how would I like it to be now?

A – Appreciate How Sugar Effects Your Body

Everyone needs to eat carbohydrates which are digested and then changed into sugar in the blood stream and carried – with the help of insulin – into our cells to produce energy.  Blood sugar or blood glucose is the main source of energy for our organs, muscles and tissues. This is a normal healthy process for our bodies to function correctly.  However, too much of the wrong kind of sugar, can create problems.

Ask yourself – What is my body’s response to sugar? Should I get my blood sugar checked to find out if it is normal?  And if it is not, what am I willing to do to correct it? 

R – Realize Your Body is Under Stress from Too Much Sugar

We all know how stress affects our bodies.  I hear the complaints every day – headaches, neck aches, back aches, upset stomach, insomnia, and on and on.  There is another type of stress that we may not be aware of, and that is called Glycemic Stress.  When your body is bombarded with too much sugar from all the high glycemic foods mentioned previously, your insulin is over-producing to cope and an internal stress cycle occurs of spiking and dropping blood sugars.  This leads to Insulin Resistance, Metabolic Syndrome and then possibly Heart Disease and Diabetes. Not a pretty picture, is it.  But these are the facts.

Ask yourself:

  • Where am I in all of this?
  • Where do I see myself with my health in the future?
  • What part am I willing to play in moving forward with a healthier lifestyle?
  • What steps do I need to take?

Need some support?  Email me at carol@carolebert.com and let’s talk!

Rock Your Health: Gluten-Free for You and Me?

How much gluten are you consuming daily and it is affecting your health?  Just look around at work at how much is staring in your face daily.  Check out these facts.

G – “Gluten” refers to proteins that occur naturally in wheat, rye, barley and cross-bred hybrids of these grains

- Labels on foods using the claim “gluten-free” now must have a gluten limit of less than 20 ppm (parts per million)

- Until now, celiac patients did not know what the words ‘gluten free’ meant when they saw them on a food label

T – Three million people in the United States have Celiac Disease which is 1% of the population

- Eliminating Gluten from the diet is a big challenge for those with Celiac Disease

- Now the FDA has set guidelines for the use of the term “gluten-free” on food labels to help people with celiac disease maintain a gluten-free diet.

 

F – Foods that contain gluten trigger production of antibodies that attack and damage the lining of the small intestine which limits absorption of nutrients and leads to other serious health problems, including nutritional deficiencies, osteoporosis, growth retardation, infertility, miscarriages, short stature, and intestinal cancers.

- Removing Gluten from the diet is the only way to manage Celiac Disease

- Eliminating Gluten from the diet will also improve life for many others who are gluten intolerant or gluten sensitive.

E – Eliminating the following from food will allow food manufacturers to use the label “gluten-free”

  1. an ingredient that is any type of wheat, rye, barley, or crossbreeds of these grains
  2. an ingredient derived from these grains and that has not been processed to remove gluten
  3. an ingredient derived from these grains and that has been processed to remove gluten, if it results in the food containing 20 or more parts per million (ppm) gluten

Want more support around this issue on how to live a gluten-free lifestyle?  Email me at carol@carolebert.com

Rock Your Health: 6 Daily habits you should definitely steal from history’s greatest “Creatives”

Are you exercising your “creative juices” as you move forward with your latest challenges? Did you know that being more creative makes life more fun and improves your health too!  Apparently famous creative people over history use “wellness strategies” to improve their creativity. Check it out!

Napping: Charles Darwin took a nap every day. Studies show that “sleeping on it” really does work. And while the idea of catching a few moments of rest midday may be perceived as lazy, it can actually be way better for productivity than trying to soldier through a particularly sleepy afternoon.

Wellness tip – I do something similar by taking 30 minutes to groove on my Chi Machine for relaxation. Not only do I get a great BUZZ when my Chi (energy) is flowing freely, but I often fall asleep as well!

*How often do you take time for a nap and what benefit do you receive when you do take one?

 

Being social: Lots of history’s greatest thinkers regularly visited and dined with their friends, which can help fend off the loneliness of being a creative entrepreneur.

Wellness tip – I am attracted to others with creative minds and when we are together we are “in the flow” where ideas come easily, they bounce back and forth and we have great fun. And feeling good doing what you love in the company of others like you is good for your heart and soul.

*How often do you tap into the creative juices of your naturally creative employees?

 

Exercising: Charles Darwin took 3 walks per day. Charles Dickens took “strenuous walks” through the countryside. Victor Hugo took long strenuous walks on the beach. Milton walked up and down his garden. Freud walked around Vienna at “terrific speed”.

Wellness tip – Exercise really kicks in my creative juices so I not only receive cardiac health benefits from my Jazzercise class and walking outside, but I also come up with even more ideas I can use. I often have to stop in mid-exercise to write down something brilliant I just thought of.

*What is your exercise routine and what creative thoughts occur when you are doing it?

 

Taking breaks: Giving themselves a chance to do something other than work in the middle of the day, whether it be a lunch with family or a quiet project, was popular with many of the greats. W.H. Auden did the crossword. Charles Darwin played backgammon with his wife.

Wellness tip – Breaks are hugely important for optimal health but I have to schedule them in or they don’t happen. We can work hard, but we need recovery time just like with exercise. So every 2 hours I stop and take a walk, have a cup of tea with a snack, or do a relaxation exercise.

*How often do you take breaks in your day – and make sure your employees do the same thing – to give the body/mind a chance to recover?

 

Decompressing at the end of the day: René Descartes and Charles Darwin both regularly allowed themselves time in bed at the end of every day to think about their day and come up with ideas, and, it’s safe to say, they didn’t do it with the TV on.

Wellness tip – I declare an end time every day or I will not stop working. The computer gets turned off and stays off, then off to exercise class followed by down-time eating and visiting with my husband to wind down for the day.

*What is your plan for decompressing from the day?

 

Sleep: Tchaikovsky, Hugo, Beethoven slept 8 hours each night, Dickens, Franklin, Darwin and Milton slept 7. And the majority prepared for sleep by winding down with reading, playing cards, conversation, listening to music, taking a bath.

Wellness tip – And today the old adage of sleeping 7-8 hours each night for rejuvenation still stands. I make sure the bedroom is dark, the windows are letting in fresh air and because I easily awaken to outside sounds I have a setting on my clock that creates the sounds of rain to block that out.

*What are your sleep rituals and how well are you doing with them?

 

Hopefully these “creative” ideas from past and present will be just what you need right now! And if you need a “Life Coach” who can help you sort it all out, contact me at carol@creatingwellnesscultures.com