Newsletter June 2010
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  • 4 Ways to Step Outside Your Comfort Zone this Summer
  • 100 Best Blogs for Healthy Joyful Living
  • Book Review: Well Being 

4 Ways to Step Outside Your Comfort Zone this Summer

Excerpt from Courage and Croissants, Inspiring Joyful Living (St. Remy Press 2010) by Suzanne Saxe-Roux and Jean P. Roux

Summertime is the perfect time to try something new. It may not be a bikini (at least if you are over 45), but there are so many ways to grow, learn, and find different and unique ways to be happy. One of the surest ways to find simple joy is to try something new. To step outside your comfort zone and find yourself laughing, crying, trembling, or just plain thrilled.

Confirming the old expression "use it or lose it," research now shows that we have to keep our brains and bodies active not just by using it, but by learning something new. This new learning is what combats the diseases associated with aging. Stepping out of your comfort zone feels good in the moment and also enables you to live a longer, healthier, and fuller life overall.

Not surprisingly, most of us will do whatever it takes to stay within our comfort zone. It is just plain easier and often less stressful. As an example, many people never venture further than fifty miles from the place they were born, and fewer than 25% of Americans own a passport. Traveling definitely stretches you and tests your ability to be flexible and resilient, but it is only one of many ways to expand your comfort zone. The important thing is taking steps to expand your own horizon.

The reward of pushing your own boundaries is an incomparable feeling of vitality and new energy. And, the more you step out, the more comfortable and competent you become at doing so.

The 4 Ways that you can step outside your comfort zone are:

  • Place - Go somewhere different for vacation-somewhere you have never been.
  • People - Meet new people who will stimulate you in different ways. They may have a unique interest, a fondness for the same hobby as you or from different walks of life.
  • Pursuits - Do something different. Try windsurfing or kayaking. Take a midnight hike in the moonlight or dust off your old paints and get out the canvas. Better yet, go paint en plein air on top of a mountain.
  • Power of the Brain - Test your brain in new ways. Take up bridge or chess, learn a new language or attend a lecture. The key is to learn something new not just more of the same.
Read more about the 4 distinct areas to step out of your comfort zone and 4 easy ways to begin now.
100 Best Blogs for Healthy Joyful Living
Adapted from
Happiness has been written about for centuries as something that we search for, hold onto, and easily misplace. Thich Nhat Hanh, the famous Buddist Monk writes,
"The amount of happiness that you have depends on the amount of freedom you have in your heart." Easy to do if you are a buddist monk!
To keep the idea alive and help you to find the happiness you desire we are providing you with a list of the Best Blogs on Healthy Joyful Living or what is often called Happiness. Take a look and see if any appeal to you. Subscribe to different RSS feeds and immerse yourself in ideas of healthy joyful living.
1. Healthy Joyful Living: Our blog on all ideas related to living a healthy joyful life for you and your family. Read back archives for traveling and living in France.
2. The Happiness Project: Here, author Gretchen Rubin shares her personal quest to find more happiness in her life.
3. Happiness Blog: Visit this blog to get some secrets to a happy life from blogger Michele Moore.
4. How of Happiness: Looks at happiness from a psychological perspective on this blog.
5. Powerfull Living: Learn new ways to pursue happiness and success in your life here.
6. Cheerful Living: This blog will teach you a myriad of ways to add happiness, cheer and joy to your life.
7. Matthew Ferry: On this blog you'll find some great life-coaching tips that are designed to help you find more happiness and success.
8. Good Life Blog: This blogger shares tips and ideas for living a happy life here.
9. Radical Happiness: Read through this blog for ideas on how to get in touch with your spiritual side and live in the now.
10. Feel Happy: From positive thinking to self-improvement, this blog is full of ideas on how to live happier.
Simplicity These blogs offer advice on simpler living.
1. My Simpler Life: On this blog, a simple-living educator shares her tips on leading a simpler life.
2. Zen Habits: Learn how to pare down your life and focus on the things that truly matter on this popular blog.
3. Remodeling This Life: Try out this blog for tips on clearing out your emotional clutter and living simply.
4. Simpler Living: Check out this blog for ideas on living well with less.
5. Modern Simplicity: On this site you'll learn how to live greener and use less.
6. More Minimal: This blogger will teach you that living simpler is a great way to save the Earth.
7. Frugal and Simple Living: Read through the posts here to get some great ideas on simplifying your life.
8. Living a Simple Life: These bloggers wanted to live a simpler, more basic life and share their experiences here.
9. Neat and Simple Living: Learn how to bring your clutter under control and simplify your daily life with help from blogger Ariane Benefit.
10. Simple Website with terrific newsletter on ideas for simple living.
We couldn't fit all 100 blogs in this newsletter so Click Here to Read about the other 80 Best Blogs on Healthy Joyful Living.

Book Review

Wellbeing, The Five Essential Elements
Tom Rath and James K. Harter
Another terrific, well researched book by Gallup on the five universal, interconnected elements that shape our well being. If you have ever wondered if all the talk, motivational speakers, articles, bloggers, and conversations you hear about living a good life are at all substantiated, this book provides the facts behind it. Filled with fascinating research and creative ideas on how to improve your well being over your lifetime, this book will keep you going for years.
The five elements (no surprise) are Career Wellbeing which includes whatever kind of work you do for money or voluntarily, Social Wellbeing, Financial, Physical, and Community Wellbeing.
The essence is that all of these elements are interconnected and one (Financial Wellbeing, for example) to the exclusion of all else will not make you happy. What is most important is how these five elements interact.
The book is based on a global study of 150 countries with a customized assessment composed of the best questions Gallup has asked over the last 50 years.
66% of the people surveyed are doing well in at least one area and ONLY 7% are thriving in all five areas. No wonder we are all out of balance and stress related diseases are on the rise.
We all have the ability to improve all of these areas, but the single biggest challenge to achieving wellbeing is OURSELVES. As human beings we seem to be hard wired to focus on short-term decisions at the expense of long-term wellbeing.
If this has peaked your interest, buy the book (or if you are saving money as all financial well being people do-go to the library) and start having conversations about how all of us can help each other to increase our overall wellbeing.
P.S. If you buy the book, you receive a special code that provides access to the Wellbeing Finder-an assessment instrument worth the price of the book.


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Suzanne and Jean-Pierre

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