Your Healthy Polk - Fall 2019

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Your Healthy Polk

Publisher Sergio Cruz |



James Coulter Jai Maa Elizabeth Morrisey Potthast

Andrea Cruz |

Art Director Alejandro F. Cruz |

Cover Designer Deborah Coker

On the cover Emily Rogers is a life coach in Lakeland. She offers executive, life, career and business coaching. Learn about Rogers and other local coaches beginning on page 8. Photo credit: Potthast Studios.

Fall 2019

Letter From Editor / Publisher



very now and then even the best of us need a little advice, a push, some encouragement, some guidance, and someone to be accountable to. That might be a friend, mentor, parent, therapist, or any number of well-meaning people in our lives. As we continue to experience rockets of desire, it helps to go down life’s path, perhaps onto the next big thing, with someone at your side who can be a guide. Our cover story is on a few local life coaches and life coaching in general. These are people who guide others almost like a therapist, helping them to discover their goals and work toward them. They help to break big goals into bite size, doable chunks, and then hold their clients accountable, hopefully to achievement. Read more about how life coaching can help you reach your life’s goals starting on page 8. Everyone needs a little touch now and then and this includes animals. Their bodies get sore and worn out, too. Turn to page 6 to read about a local animal masseuse who focuses her therapeutic touch on horses and learn the benefits of animal massage. Mindful parenting takes so much patience. Lucky are the kiddos who are on the receiving end of parents who choose their words and actions carefully. Jai Maa tells us of an experience she had recently coparenting a small group of children with other adults while their parents were on a retreat. “Conscious Coparenting” begins on page 15. Cleaning hacks are a welcome thing in most homes, but when those hacks include essential oils—even better. Turn to page 14 for those good tips and tricks to make your life easier and healthier. Be healthy. Be happy.

/ Sergio Cruz /

Andrea Cruz

Your Healthy Polk Be healthy. Be happy.

Your Healthy Polk is a product of Polk Media, Inc. A mind, body, soul magazine focused on the local health industry, Your Healthy Polk endeavors to bring the best of Polk’s locallysourced good news about good health. For more info visit or Polk Media is a woman- and minority-owned business.

Fall 2019


Photo credit: Potthast Studios



Letter from Editor / Publisher


The Benefits of Animal Massage By James Coulter


Cover: Life Coaching—Goal Digging By Liz Morrisey


Conscious Coparenting By Jai Maa


06 Photo credit: James Coulter



Your Healthy Polk

Animal Massage: EQUINE THERAPY By James Coulter

As with humans, animals often suffer issues with tight muscles that can lead to neck and back problems. This can prevent them from freely and comfortably moving their legs and head, and thus prevent them from walking and moving properly. Horses are no exception and special massage therapists exist to help them regain their natural, pain-free movements.

Fall 2019


bout a year ago, Taz, a 17-year-old Painted Quarter Horse, started experiencing problems in her shoulder. Her hips weren’t moving properly, and the pain prevented her from wanting to be groomed around the chest, her owner, Danielle Splinter, explains. Splinter requested the assistance of Melody Horne, a horse masseuse, to come to her ranch outside of Bartow and attend to Taz. Horne discovered that Taz had issues causing her muscles to tighten up, which would require some massages to loosen up. Using essential oils, Horne, who also works on other animals such as canines, began to massage Taz’s muscles to get them loose and limber. She even used a photonic red light to help the muscles heal. Since receiving regular appointments for the past year, Taz’s conditions have significantly improved. No longer stiff and cumbersome, Taz remains as agile as any performing horse can be. “She is [suppler] in the bridle, she is more willing to accept the bit and move forward with her shoulders and not be as restricted like she used to be,” Spritzer says. Taz loves being pampered and massaged. She even knows when Horne has arrived on the property, and expresses disappointment when she hasn’t received a massage for a long time, Horne says. “They do recognize that I offer relief,” Horne says. “If I don’t massage them, they will actually pout. There have been times where she has been next to another horse. You can see her looking at me, asking, ‘Are you going to massage me next?’ They know what I am about.” As with humans, horses, as well as other animals, often suffer issues with tight muscles that can lead to neck and back problems. This can prevent them from freely and comfortably moving their legs and head, and thus prevent them from walking and moving properly.

“That is why a massage is good for the horses because it helps muscles loosen [up] and move the way they are designed to move,” Horne explains. Horne has been giving massages to horses for the past two years. She started when her own horses began developing hip problems. This led her to take a class in horse massages and become a Certified Equine Sports Massage Therapist. She has since been using that knowledge to not only help her own horses, but those of friends and clients. Horne massages horses by rubbing and kneading their muscles in their legs, backs, and hips. Often she uses essential oils, which help loosen the muscle and skin tissue and also relax the horses with pleasant aromas. She also utilizes a photonic red light that she shines upon especially sore muscles. The wavelengths aid in the healing of muscles, she says. She also uses a tuning fork, the vibrations of which help horses relax their muscles. Such treatments help the horses become looser and limber, and thus help ail their back and neck problems. Taz had previously suffered from such issues to the point where she did not even want to be touched; now she eagerly awaits being touched through Horne’s visits, Horne says. “When we started working with her, she did not want to move certain ways in the saddle, she would want to strike and bite when you touched certain parts of her,” she says, and adds that the massages help the animal to perform better. Whenever Horne is called out on a first-time appointment, she will perform a thorough evaluation prior to her first massage to assess the horse. After that, she moves forward with a proper treatment plan for helping the horse and its needs. While most owners would assume one massage is enough, Horne recommends multiple visits, as well as a Continued on page 13

Photo opposite page: Animal masseuse Melody Horne massages Taz, a 17-year-old Painted Quarter Horse. Taz’s owner noticed that her hips weren’t moving properly and hired Horne to give the animal some relief through regular massages. Photo by James Coulter.



Your Healthy Polk

LIFE COACHING Goal Digging & Guiding By Liz Morrisey

Fall 2019


e all have times when we feel a bit lost and question our lives and where we are going. Do I go for that promotion at work? Why can’t I lose that 10 pounds? How do I reconnect with what’s most important in my life? Life coaches can help one evaluate their life and answer these types of questions – from a personal standpoint or from a business perspective. Emily Rogers personally benefited from having a life coach so she decided to become one. Rogers, who lives in Lakeland, started her own company in 2013 and offers executive, life, career and business coaching. “It’s all about unlocking your personal and professional potential,” she explains. “We are helping people thrive. They become not only better leaders but better people too.” First, it is important for the client to really look at what they want to accomplish, Rogers says. After an initial questionnaire, she encourages them to meet with her every other week for one hour the first few months. “The sessions are collaborative and intuitive. The coach and client are actively engaged. We discuss new approaches and so much of the work and benefit happens in between sessions,” she says. According to the International Coach Federation, 80 percent of people working with a life coach said their self confidence increased and more than 70 percent reported improved work performance, relationships and better

communication skills. Diana Smith has been a client of Rogers for three years and feels life coaching helped her personally and professionally. “I knew I had all these characteristics but I didn’t know how to cultivate them properly,” she says. “It’s all about your entire life. She taught me different strategies. I’ve seen so much growth in working with her. It helped me to work with different personalities and relationships at work and it can help with (how you interact) your husband and children too.” Smith, director of development for Explorations V Children’s Museum, says through the sessions she saw how she can change the way she was interacting with others. Does Smith recommend life coaching to others? Absolutely, just be sure to be accepting and open to advice and feedback. “It will turn a mirror around on yourself,” Smith says. Breaking bad habits and holding yourself accountable is the key to life coaching being successful, says Daniella Zoppe, who took the two-year life coaching course and continues to help friends and family. “I stopped doing it for payment and now just do it organically to help others,” she explains. “I just enjoy helping someone who has struggled with things for so long. I give them tools to work it out on their own.” Finding the right coach is key and don’t expect it to be a quick fix, she says. Zoppe, who lives in Polk County, especially enjoys working with women and helping them Continued pg. 9

Photo opposite page: Lakeland life coach Emily Rogers helps her clients work toward life goals, whether in their professional or personal lives. Photo by Potthast Studios.



Your Healthy Polk


Break Through Your Threshold by Jai Maa

Coparenting Raising children in a mindful manner takes patience and kindness. And more patience. Jai Maa’s experience coparenting with others is a lesson for any kind of parent.


t takes a village to raise a child has been casually spoken around me my entire life. What does this cliché mean in today’s modern age where our homes have gotten bigger and our yards smaller?

I grew up in a neighborhood where every household knew each other. Almost daily there would be a knock at our door from kids wanting to play, parents stopping by to see if their kids were playing in our trees, or one of the neighborhood ladies bringing jams she made from the guavas growing in our back yard. If we wanted to talk to each other, we didn’t bother with an impersonal phone call, we would just walk down the street to say hello. Today, I’ve witnessed family members being in the same house communicate through text if they need something! In many neighborhoods today, you can see through your neighbor’s window from your window, yet you may not know their name. What is happening here? How are we becoming closer in space and further away in connection? And what does this mean for our children? If children are not interacting with each other by climbing trees, making forts, riding bikes, and getting dirty, what are they doing? How are they learning to connect, and most importantly, how consciously are they being raised? I am blessed to be a part of a thriving community of those making healing, service, connection to God, and self-realization their priority. I have witnessed these adults embrace a conscious parenting style that gives me hope for a new, enlightened world. I have not given birth to any children of my own, but I am a mother to many. One of the recent gifts I have received as a village-mother is the opportunity to care for my little 3-year-old friend while his mother attended the transformational seminars through Satvatove Institute. I got to experience coparenting with a few other moms in environments centered in conscious communication. We took turns watching over each others’ children who were all 5 years of age and younger, freeing up energy so each adult could run their business, and get proper self-care and rest.

In the business of parenting we had a lot of fun! The home was full of laughing children, spontaneous dancing to Michael Jackson prompted through Alexa, the sounds of the dishwasher and laundry room operating most of the time, and the smells of yummy, healthy food permeating from the kitchen. Everyday was laced with kid’s arguing over toys, someone getting hurt in a wrestling match, or another feeling left out from creating with Lego bricks when they weren’t being shared. It was these opportune moments that caused me to grow deeper as a conscious coparent. Every time a kid had a meltdown, the adult present would stop what they were doing and, without reacting or raising their voice, bend down and use empathic listening to understand what was happening amongst the children. Empathic listening means to show understanding of what another is saying. For example, “You feel sad because the toy was taken from your hands.” Showing empathy inspires a child’s connection with you because they feel seen, heard, and understood. After demonstrating understanding of what each child was crying about, the adult would remind them of the rules, and ask the children to say their understanding of the rules. The children were never called “bad” or had love withheld from them when they misbehaved. None of us ever used bullying tactics to get a child to submit to our will. Hitting a child is not an option for us. Physical violence may work up front to scare a child into submission, but in the long run, any form of physical, verbal, or emotional abuse creates the pain, disconnect, and fear that carries over into their adult experience. It was not easy remaining centered and keeping my cool when I was alone watching over a house full of wild young boys. Much of the time, I felt mentally scattered and emotionally triggered when meltdowns occurred and I wasn’t being listened to. No matter what, I am still 100 percent responsible for staying centered and in control of my emotions when I assert boundaries and reenforce rules. Continued on page 12.

Fall 2019


Brain Strain Theme: Health & Fitness

DOWN 1. Between Fa and La 2. Door opener 3. International Civil Aviation Org. 4. Twist out of shape 5. Scary movie consequence 6. Socially acceptable behaviors 7. Make haste, in a letter 8. Be unsuccessful 9. *Prescribed food selection 10. Common conjunction 12. “The Shawshank Redemption” theme 13. “____ One” on a ticket 14. Lesser Antilles island 19. What band does 22. A cool one, as in money 23. Nilla ____, sing. 24. Tequila source 25. Torn down 26. Cheney or Pence 27. Defraud 28. Idealized image

ACROSS 1. Undesirable row 5. *Genetic stuff 8. *Public health org. 11. Fairytale start 12. Aphrodite’s son 13. Once more 15. Bakery unit 16. *Blood component, pl. 17. Like plum turned to prune 18. *Type of fitness class 20. Type of hot sandwich 21. Not taken and taken 22. M in rpm, abbr. 23. *Beginning of a workout 26. *A, B or C 30. ____ Khan 31. Not wholesale 34. Russian governmental agency 35. *Juice cleanses, e.g. 37. Michael Jackson’s early hit

29. Rock bottom 38. *Green entrÈe 39. Never without n 40. Remove from political office 42. Computer-generated imagery 43. Gets ready for publication 45. *An apple a day keeps this one away 47. Boiling blood 48. Fire in one’s soul 50. Spanish lady 52. *End of workout 55. ____ de la Frontera, Spain 56. What pep talkers do 57. Bye in Palermo 59. *Estrogen producer 60. Spot to hang a heavy picture 61. Grams, e.g. 62. 4 qts.

32. *Soaks in D 33. *Traverse and oblique muscles 36. *Personal helper 38. “The Day the World ____ Still” 40. Beehive State native 41. Befuddled 44. Has bats in the belfry 46. Croci, sing. 48. *Largest artery in human body 49. Scallywag 50. Deity in Sanskrit 51. *Like dental exam 52. Spew profanities 53. Drunkard 54. Lack of guile 55. *Not a walk in the park 58. Baseball Giant and hall-of-famer

63. Greek letters on campus 64. Like baby’s bottom

Solution on page 14.


Your Healthy Polk Conscious Coparenting, from pg. 10

If a child had trouble listening, I would, in a gentle, non-threatening tone, say, “What do you understand I said?” This is different than, “Do you understand what I said?” — which could leave space for the child to say “yes” without clear understanding. In saying, “What do you understand I said?” the child would do their best to repeat what they heard. If they still did not have complete understanding, I would repeat what they missed and say, “What do you understand I said?” I repeated this process until each child was on the same page and had an understanding of the rules. If the rules continued to be broken, I would remain calm and take the child who was out of bounds by the hand to sit quietly with me and have a conversation. If they continued to not listen, I would say, “It’s time for a nap. I know you understand the rules, and when you don’t follow them, it lets me know you must be tired,” and I put them to bed. Naturally, they cry and protest that they didn’t need a nap, and within minutes, they’re usually fast asleep. Understanding that a three year old needs a nap when they are out of control is a form of empathy. This process cycled all day long. I would turn off the stove if I was cooking, hang up the phone if I was talking, and address the breakdown from a centered space of non-reactivity. The other coparents did the same. Whether we were alone or working together, our nonreactive parenting style matched our intention to discipline children without the use of violence. The energy and attention children require can be demanding and draining. Perhaps this is why it takes a village to raise a child. I

would further add that it takes a conscious village with conscious parenting skills to raise a child. Many say they want peace on Earth, and raising a child through patient, loving, assertive discipline is the tedious, time-consuming, and necessary work to make that shift. I have witnessed many parents in my community never once hit their children or verbally abuse them in any way. These children are growing up feeling safe and secure, confident in who they are, connected to their power to create what they want, and with the Light of Spirit still twinkling in their eyes. Some may feel this is a complicated idea to implement, but it seems we are complicating our lives without it. We owe it to ourselves and our children to put forth the effort. The more self-realized and healed we are, the greater gift we are to our future generations. Enlightenment Challenge: Where in your life are you emotionally reacting verses calmly responding to experiences that trigger you— especially where children are concerned? The next time you feel triggered by anyone or anything, take a moment to breathe and connect with your center before you choose how to mindfully move forward.

Jai Maa is an author and enlightenment facilitator who inspires others to create their visions with no compromise. An interfaith minister and native of Polk County, she travels around the country in a glamped-out RV with her cat companions teaching others how to co-create with God and live their own version of Heaven on Earth. More info:

Fall 2019


Animal Massage, from pg. 7

proper exercise regiment, for the horses to receive full treatment. “You cannot do one massage and the horse is perfectly fine,” she says. “Two massages is not fine. You cannot massage them two or three times, get them to a good place, wait for six months to a year, and wonder why they are all tight and tense again.”

For more info contact Horne at 863-224-5452 or doublehemt@ Or visit her Facebook page: Double H Animal Massage Therapy & Rehab.

As she is neither a certified veterinarian nor a chiropractor, oftentimes, she will encounter severe medical problems that are outside of her expertise. She advises the owner to seek professional medical care. Otherwise, her helping hands usually offer the tender loving care that most horses need. “I don’t necessarily massage horses just to massage horses,” she says. “A lot of people don’t see this as a necessary care, but once they start using the massages, they do start realize that it is important for the horse’s health.”

Above: Animal masseuse Melody Horne uses a photonic red light, the wavelengths of which heal the sore muscles of a 17-year-old Painted Quarter Horse named Taz. Photo by James Coulter.


Your Healthy Polk

5 Household Cleaning Hacks

Using Essential Oils


rom cleaners and sprays to air fresheners and more, essential oils are making their way into the mainstream as commonplace, common sense household solutions.

It’s no surprise then that the market for essential oils is anticipated to grow significantly (more than 9 percent) over the next several years, according to Grand View Research. More households are catching onto the fact that these beneficial plant-based ingredients have a range of cleaning and home care uses. To get in on the trend, consider these cool home care uses for essential oils: • Wipe Surfaces: Creating your own cleaning supplies can make chores a little easier on the eyes, nose and throat. The good news is that certain essential oils, like tea tree and lemon oil can help fight dirt and grime, as well as kill bacteria and viruses, making them an excellent addition to homemade cleaning solutions and wipes. • Banish Bugs: Most traditional home insecticide products use the same active ingredients initially developed almost 50 years ago. Interestingly, the right mix of essential oils can also be highly lethal to bugs. Familiar ingredients such as lemongrass oil and geraniol in Zevo Instant Action Sprays target nerve receptors active only in insects, not people or pets. “Zevo bug sprays are effective because they target insects’ unique biology with a blend of effective essential oils, setting them apart from traditional insecticide sprays,” says John Scarchilli of Procter & Gamble Ventures, which sell Zevo online and at select Target and The Home Depot stores.

Photo credit: Madeleine Steinbach /

oils into your home’s supply kit. A small but mighty dose can go a long way. Article credit:

• Bust Fridge Odors: Even if you regularly rid your fridge of old items and wipe down its surfaces, combatting fridge odor can be a losing battle, as the plastic components tend to absorb odors over time. Make that box of baking soda that you have in your refrigerator work a bit harder. To go beyond simply neutralizing odors, add a few drops of essential lemon oil to it for a crisp, fresh scent. • Revive Fabrics: Take a natural approach to fresh-smelling fabrics. Create your own spray by combining baking soda, distilled water and a touch of your favorite essential oils. Use the formula on linens, upholsteries, window treatments or any other fabrics around your home in need of a scent boost. • Create Calm: You don’t have to do a full hygge-inspired renovation project to promote a peaceful atmosphere in your home’s spaces. With just a diffuser and such essential oils as lavender and bergamot, you can fill a room with a calming scent. For clean, healthy, bug-free spaces, consider introducing essential

Crossword on page 11.

Fall 2019


Life Coaching, from pg. 9

through transitional periods in their lives. “I see how capable so many women are and they are everything to everyone. It’s about bringing clarification to women and (having them focus on themselves).”

In the world of technology there are many ways coaches can communicate with clients, but Zoppe still prefers the old-fashioned way—face-to-face. However, sessions can also be done through Skype or the phone.

Phyllis Ferguson, a life coach for 12 years, has also found a niche and likes helping young to middle-aged women. She says most of her clients are dealing with life changes and just need some guidance. They may be struggling with weight loss, budgeting their finances, or even marital issues. “My job isn’t to tell them what to do. They have all the answers themselves. I just help them set goals and coach them on how to get there.”

Life coaching can range widely and be pricey, as high as $300 or more. Ferguson charges $60 for a 45-minute meeting, while Rogers charges in the higher range. There are many factors to consider with a coach’s fee, says Rogers. “Business and executive coaches typically charge more based on their years of experience, specialized training, industry experience and the title of the person being coached.”

Ferguson started out as a massage therapist and while they were on the table, they were sharing all kinds of personal information. “I thought to myself, I wish I knew what to say and help,” she says. So she enrolled in the Coaches Training Institute in Atlanta. “Now I have the tools to help people wherever they are and where they want to be.”

For these coaches, however, it’s not about the money. They just enjoy helping others and seeing lives improve. To contact Emily Rogers: To contact Daniela Zoppe: 407-808-7350. To contact Phyllis Ferguson: 863-324-4815.