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Winter 2018

BalancedLiving Help for the Holiday Blues pp. 6-7 Falling into a New Workout pp. 8-9

...Also In this issue... A New Vision of Holiday Eating Create a Master Calendar for Your Family MINES Eye: 1-Minute Breathing Exercise

BalancedLiving Winter 2018

MINES & Associates 10367 West Centennial Road Littleton, Colorado 80127 800.873.7138

A word from your Employee Assistance Program... Welcome to the Winter 2018 issue of BalancedLiving!

The holidays and the end of the year are upon us. With these events usually comes stressors unique to this time of year. To help tackle these, this issue is full of resources and information sure to help you keep healthy, productive, and stress free through the New Year!

To get a jump on things head over to page 4 to learn the basics of putting together a family calendar to help stay organized. Then on page 5 you’ll see some helpful tips on eating healthy this holiday season. Next, learn some ways to counter the “holiday blues” on page 6 and then see why its always a good time to start a new workout on page 8. Finally on the last 2 pages we provide a quick 1-minute breathing exercise to help you keep your cool on the go, and then deliver up a delicious recipe for some mashed potatoes you can prep a head of time to serve at home or events you may be going to. Enjoy! Remember your Employee Assistance Program is available 24/7 at 1-800-873-7138 to help you with issues in your life that may be going on this winter or anytime of the year. To your health!

– The MINES Team

. . . . . . . . Credits . . . . . . .

Life Advantages - Author Delvina Miremadi ©2018 Create a Master Calendar for Your Family pg. 4 The Staywell Company, LLC ©2018 A New Vision of Holiday Eating pg. 5 Help for the Holiday Blues pp. 6-7 Falling into a New Workout pp. 8-9 The MINES Team MINES Eye: 1-Minute Breathing Exercise pg. 10 Recipe: Make Ahead Mashed Potatoes pg. 11




TotalWellbeing is your way to connect the dots between the 8 core dimensions of wellness: Physical, Occupational, Intellectual,

Environmental, Financial, Social, Spiritual, and Emotional Wellness. Understanding these dimensions is the first step toward a sense of complete wellbeing. In 2018 we take ideas around wellbeing and tie them into the bigger picture, your community, and the rest of the world. It is important to understand the influence that the world has on our wellbeing and the influence we may have on others. All year we will be looking at ways to strengthen your connection with your community by providing information, insight, and resources to help on a personal level along with ways to give back to the people around you so we can all thrive together!

Enhancing Awareness Inspire Wellbeing

The 8 dimensions of wellbeing don’t just apply to one person, they apply to everyone we know and everything we do. Social influence is a huge factor that contributes to each of our levels of wellness, but it all starts with the individual. With this in mind, our challenge to you in 2018 is to see how you can apply wellness goals and concepts to the activities you do everyday. Any time you learn something new, teach someone else and help them use it to enhance their own life!

Total Wellbeing World View

In 2018 we aim to build on the concept of wellbeing awareness. We will be providing resources, stories, and tools to help you see the bigger wellness picture from your community to the rest of the world. Check out our articles in this magazine and head to to check out our monthly newsletter with even more great wellness information.

Wellness Webinars

Support from the experts Join MINES for any of our free monthly webinars. 2018 will cover great new topics ranging from improving your credit, having a stress free summer, turning negatives to positives, and much more! Visit our website to learn more, or register for upcoming events at

Is there a topic you’d like to see us explore? We’d love to hear from you. Shoot us an e-mail at and let us know what you’d like to see. | 800.873.7138

Create a Master Calendar for Your Family A master calendar is a great way to keep track of everyone’s events and activities. Especially if you have teenagers in the house, this can be a great technique to provide peace of mind regarding each family member’s location and schedule. If you have younger children, encourage them to use the calendar as an organizational tool as soon as they’re old enough to read and write.

Keep the calendar in a place where it is easily accessible and easily seen. You could put it on the refrigerator or in some other central location. Encourage everyone to use the calendar and make it enjoyable. Consider buying fun markers; a large, erasable white board; or a pre-made calendar (available at office supply stores or stationary stores). Make sure that there is enough room to write down what each person is doing that day, noting appointments, activities, and other important happenings. Leave space around the calendar for writing relatives’ numbers, doctors’ numbers, emergency numbers, and phone numbers of local families that can help out in a moment’s notice.

Consider the following items to mark down on your calendar: • menus of the week • appointments • holidays

• birthdays

• anniversaries

• community events • PTA meetings

• after-school events • vacations

• conferences

• school closings or school half-days

• times when a parent is out of town • dates when projects are due

At the end of the month, review your calendar. See where time was spent. Should you adjust your family’s routine so you can spend more time together? Are there activities that can be cut out, or replaced by other activities? Is one family member coordinating all the activities but not taking part in activities of their own (e.g. mom)? M


Winter 2018 Balanced Living

A New Vision of Holiday Eating Indulging over the holidays can do more than stretch your waistline. An American Heart Association (AHA) report shows that the risk of having a heart attack is four times greater after eating a large meal high in fat and calories. The good news is that you can enjoy the holidays in a healthy way.

Get creative

Try these simple recipe changes from the AHA to reduce fat and calories while keeping the flavor: • Use egg substitutes or egg whites (two whites per one whole egg).

• When a baking recipe calls for oil or butter, try a fruit puree, such as applesauce, instead.

• Use less sugar than called for in pie recipes. You can make up for the required sweetness by using one-fourth of the amount of sugar and add the sweetener sucralose, which can be successfully used in baking. • Use low-fat dairy products.

• Change one ingredient at a time so that you know which changes you like best.

Party planner

At holiday parties, you don’t always have control over the types of foods available. Make the best of your choices and cut back on portions: • Take only a sliver of your favorite desserts.

• If you’re having pie, don’t eat all the crust, unless it’s made from crushed graham crackers. • Sample the fresh fruit platter. • Avoid alcohol.

• Eat a healthy meal before the party so that you don’t overindulge.

When you bring a dish to share, keep in mind that the guests may also be watching their eating habits. Offer healthy alternatives to feel good about what you’re serving. M

“At holiday parties, you don’t always have control over the types of foods available. Make the best of your choices and cut back on portions”

Winter 2018 Balanced Living 5

Help for the Holiday Blues The holidays are just about here again. And with them can come a range of stresses and anxieties, among them: holiday shopping, holiday finances, family stress, mailing seasonal cards, attending parties, and the tendency to neglect everyday routines at this time of year — such as eating right and exercising. These can lead to the phenomenon known as holiday depression or the holiday blues.

Will your holiday be blue?

According to the National Mental Health Association (NMHA), depression peaks over the holidays. The unrealistic expectations of the season, time and financial pressures, missing loved ones, and reflecting on past events as the year comes to an end all contribute.

During the holidays, a person can experience depression, loneliness, sadness, isolation, anger, and abnormal sleep. Those who don’t experience depression can experience other symptoms such as headaches, tension, fatigue, excessive drinking, and over-eating. It is also common to feel a holiday let down after the holidays are over. The hectic holiday period, and the feeling of being physically and emotionally drained can leave you with the sense of loss or frustration, and then that can turn into the blues.

The holiday blues can range from mild sadness during the holidays to severe depression, and they are often a normal reaction to life situations.

Disagreement over the term

The holiday blues are not a diagnosable clinical disorder. In fact, there is no agreement among mental health experts as to whether the phenomenon actually exists, because there is no increase in the number of people who seek mental health services in November and December.

Holiday blues should not be confused with clinical depression. Clinical depression is a disorder that may need to be relieved with medication, while the holiday blues could require something as simple as a good listener. Clinical depression, however, can be triggered in a number of ways at, or just after, the holidays. There is also a tendency to link the holiday blues with seasonal affective disorder (SAD). SAD, however, is a diagnosable disorder that is caused by fewer hours of sunlight during the winter. Although people with the holiday blues can also be afflicted with SAD, the two are not directly related. Patients with SAD suffer the symptoms not only throughout the holiday season, but also throughout the autumn and winter seasons.


Winter 2018 Balanced Living

Keeping the blues away The holiday blues may be alleviated with something as simple as getting enough rest. People actually lose sleep during the holidays and end up shortchanging themselves, so the brain needs to recuperate. Consequences of not getting enough sleep may be cloudy thinking, irritability, and inability to deal with everyday stress. Other ways to help ease the blues are to eat a diet rich in fruits and vegetables and to start exercising. Also, make an effort to be more positive.

“The holiday blues can be quite common, but if you are feeling especially down — for example, your sleep or your appetite is affected, contact your regular physician or call MINES 24/7 at 1-800-873-7138”

Tips to ease the blues If you are experiencing holiday blues, try to decrease or alleviate them by doing these things: • Talk to someone honestly. • Limit alcohol intake.

• Stick within your normal life routine as much as possible. • Stick to a realistic budget.

• Establish realistic goals and expectations.

• Do not label the season as a time to cure past problems. • Find time for yourself.

• Enjoy free holiday activities.

• Try to celebrate the holiday in a different way

The holiday blues can be quite common, but if you are feeling especially down — for example, your sleep or your appetite is affected, contact your regular physician or visit the National Mental Health Association online at for help and guidance. If you are thinking about suicide, call your health care provider or MINES and Associates immediately. M

Important Reminder!

If you or someone you know is suffering from seasonal or long-term depression or stress, please don’t wait to call us. There is always someone to talk to on the line. Help is a call away. Call 24/7 to 1-800-873-7138 Winter 2018 Balanced Living 7

Falling Into a New Workout As the Weather Cools, Make Changes to Stay Active. Those long, active summer days have drawn to a close, but that’s no reason to let your workout routines go into hibernation.

“Think of autumn or winter as the start of a fresh new fitness season. Take advantage of the brisk temperatures to re-energize your commitment to a healthful lifestyle,” says Kathie Davis, executive director of IDEA: The Health and Fitness Source, based in San Diego. Start by writing down what you’ve accomplished in your fitness program so far and what you want to achieve in the future. Include long-range, broad objectives, such as maintaining a healthy weight, along with some short-term goals that will help you reach them. As autumn days get shorter, “scheduling workouts can become more difficult, especially if you prefer to exercise outdoors, says Wayne L. Westcott, Ph.D., author of “Strength Training Past 50.”

“To keep yourself entertained indoors, plan a workout that includes short periods of several different activities. Try 20 minutes on the stationary bicycle, 20 on the rowing machine, and 20 on the stair climber.”

Instead of struggling to beat the clock, Dr. Westcott suggests “get more bang for the buck by choosing activities that give you the same fitness benefits in a shorter amount of time.” If you usually take a one-hour brisk walk, for instance, run for a halfhour, instead.

If you decide to work out indoors, don’t expect to duplicate your outdoor routine. “Sustained activity in a gym lacks the variety you get outside,” says Dr. Westcott. “If you spend an hour riding a bike on a beautiful country road, it goes by in a flash. If you spent an hour on a stationary bike in the gym, you’d go nuts.”

To keep yourself entertained indoors, plan a workout that includes short periods of several different activities. Try 20 minutes on the stationary bicycle, 20 on the rowing machine, and 20 on the stair climber. On the next page are other ideas to help you make an active transition from summer to winter exercise.


Winter 2018 Balanced Living

Get organized WInter brings lots of new demands on time, especially if you’re involved in community activities or have children in school. Protect your workout by setting a definite time and place, then scheduling other activities around that.

Seal the commitment by arranging to work out with a friend or personal trainer. Or join a group of people who walk, run, or cycle at a regular time and place.

Catch the back-to-school spirit

Sign up for a class in a physical activity you’ve always wanted to learn.

Winterize your equipment

If you change your workout conditions, you may need to change your shoes, outerwear, or other equipment as well.

Maintain your skills

Tennis and swimming transfer easily indoors, but if golf or baseball is your sport, it may be harder to find winter opportunities to play. Keep in shape by choosing workouts that mimic motions used in your sport and keep those muscles strong and flexible.

Sign up for a bad-weather backup

Don’t let rain or snow give you an excuse to skip a workout. Arrange for an indoor location before you need it. Join a health club, buy a video, or investigate local mall-walking opportunities.

Find new opportunities to be active

Take the stairs instead of the elevator; park in the lot farthest away; and take a quick walk around the block at lunchtime.

“Get more exercise in winter, not less,” says Dr. Westcott. “You’ll feel better all over. And there’s no more effective way to fight the winter doldrums than by staying active and fit.” M

Winter 2018 Balanced Living 9


The importance of staying mindful.

With MINES Eye we will focus on meditation techniques, basic yoga poses, and mindfulness practices to help you stay in control of your thoughts and expand the capabilities of your mind as well as body.

1-Minute Breathing Exercise

As we finish out the year we wanted to remind you of a quick 1-minute breathing exercise that you can do any where at any time to help ease anxiety, regain focus, and bring you back to your center. This may come in particularly handy as you handle the demands that the end of the year may place whether its from work, family and friends, holiday shopping, or the guilt from that one too many holiday cookie you ate. Take a breather and don’t worry about it. Here’s how you do it:

Step 1

Begin by breathing in and out slowly and deliberately. Hold your breath for 3 to 6 seconds when you inhale. Slowly release your breath while focusing your attention on the air leaving your body. Remember that the point of this exercise is to be conscious of your breathing, and if your mind begins to wonder try to let those thoughts drift away as you return your focus to your breath.

Step 2

Try to use all of your senses to be aware of your breath. Listen to the air enter and leave your body. Feel the air enter and leave your lungs. Imagine you can see the air in your body as you inhale and exhale. Think about how the air smells and tastes as it passes through your nose and mouth.

Step 3

Continue this for one minute, or as long as you please, and try and maintain focus the entire time. If you can’t accomplish this at first that is okay. The very act of practicing will help you become better at being mindful, and letting worrisome thoughts drift away will become easier and easier as you learn to focus your thoughts. M


Winter 2018 Balanced Living


Chinese Fried Rice

Ingredients: • • • •

3 lbs potatoes (about 4 large) 1/2 teaspoon salt 2 tablespoons butter or 2 tablespoons margarine 2 (3 ounce) packages cream cheese, softened

• • • • •

2/3 cup sour cream 1/4 cup milk 3/4 teaspoon salt 1 tablespoon butter or 1 tablespoon margarine, melted 1/2 teaspoon paprika

Directions: 1. Place potatoes in a saucepan; add water to cover and 1/2 teaspoon salt. 2. Bring to a boil; cover, reduce heat to medium, and simmer for 25 minutes or until potatoes are tender. 3. Drain. 4. Peel potatoes; place in a large mixing bowl, and mash with a potato masher. 5. Add 2 tablespoons butter, cream cheese, sour cream, milk, and 3/4 teaspoon salt. 6. Mix until all ingredients are blended. 7. Spoon mixture into a lightly greased 12x8x2-inch baking dish. 8. Brush top of mixture with melted butter; sprinkle with paprika. 9. Bake immediately, or cover and refrigerate. 10. If refrigerated, let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes before baking. 11. Bake at 350F, uncovered for 30 minutes or until hot. 12. All done, enjoy! Makes approximately 11 servings Nutritional analysis (per serving): 206.8 calories; 11.5 g fat (6.7 g sat); 33.4 mg cholesterol; 23 g carbohydrates; 2 g from sugars; 3.9 g protein; 2.8 g fiber; 363 mg sodium. M Winter 2018 Balanced Living 11

Helping you keep

your balance

Your Employee Assistance Program is here for you 24 hours a day, 7 days a week It’s confidential, FREE, and available to you and your family. For information or confidential assistance call 1-800-873-7138

BalancedLiving: Winter 2018  
BalancedLiving: Winter 2018