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DR. PGB HUDSON: "A Season of Giving, Living is Upon Us"

New Jersey

By: Dr. Phyllis Bivins-Hudson/Najla Alexander 

We must also think of ourselves in this season of giving to others.

Yes, I said it—we must think of ourselves.

I know we have all grown up believing that giving is more blessed than receiving. I still live by that adage. However, I'm speaking of a different kind of thought when I say we need to think of ourselves where giving is concerned.

Here's what I'm getting at. Many of us give all the time. Some of us even give until it hurts. I'm one of those people.

I will share my last with someone in need because I'm always thinking I can get more of whatever I've given, but this person, whoever he/she/they may be, at the time, cannot do for themselves, so I give. But consider for a moment what it would be like to think of yourself for a change.

Think of how wonderful it would be to put a laser focus on you.

When you do, you can do some things just for you. So here is my thinking around the concept of "Think of Ourselves."

1. Wake up every morning for an entire month and thank God or whomever you choose for waking you up because you really could have slept, slumbered, and slipped right into death. I know a little something about that because on the third Wednesday night in August of this year, 2022, my baby sister went to sleep and did not wake up on Thursday morning or any other morning.

She went to bed with a doctor's recommendation: A clean bill of health, just one week earlier, and then she slept, slumbered, and slipped into death. So, think of yourself and be thankful when you wake up to life!

2. Give yourself permission to commit to one month of a daily routine of exercising, no matter how little or how much. That said, when you go to the grocery store, or when you go to the pharmacy, the bank, or wherever, park further away than you usually do to increase your number of steps for the day.

It's incredible how steps accumulate. Before you know it, you will have amassed that magic number of 10,000 steps. I began in January putting this step thing into practice.


Here is how I did it:

     1. I purchased a Fitbit myself and synched it with my cell phone.


     2. In December 2021, I committed to starting walking in January 2022.


     3. When January came, I began walking (around my house) and doing 6,000 steps daily.


     4. At the end of January, I saw how easy it was, so I added 500 steps making my total daily steps 6,500.


     5. Then I realized I could add 500 more steps per day each month until I reached 10,000.


     6. In September, I reached my goal of 10,000 steps per day and have committed to 10,000 steps per day ever since.


Here's my challenge: I have arthritis in my knees and can't do much walking.

However, I love dancing, so I do a combination of walking and dancing. It's the same thing. I have found that when I'm really into the dance routine, I'm sweating more than when I walk, so I'm burning up a great deal of energy.

The payoff is this—preCOVID, I was ____ lbs.

Since I've been walking and dancing, I've lost 39 lbs.

And I've learned that to continue to eat what and when I want, I must continue this routine because it keeps me from putting any of that weight back on.

That's me thinking of myself again!

3. Do something for yourself and only yourself! Don't go to the movies with your spouse or a friend and call that doing something for you. I mean something exclusively for you. For instance, schedule a spa day—not a 30-minute or hour session, but an all-day spa day that begins in the morning and ends early or late afternoon. Don't you think you are worth it? I think you are. Remember, you only live once; once you are gone, there are no do-overs. My husband asked me what I wanted for an anniversary gift, and I immediately thought—hmm, this is an opportunity to think about myself. So, I took him up on it.  

And when he asked how much the services would cost, I inquired within and learned that there are spa packages that last for a full day. Voile! Then I took advantage of the services I wanted because I thought of myself. And you should too.

Thinking of yourself is not a bad thing. It's not being selfish. It's not being arrogant.

It's called self-preservation, which is the first law of nature.

If we don't take care of ourselves, then those things we like to do to take care of others won't happen because we will be too sick, or too depressed, or too busy, or too whatever to do what we love to do—help others.

Share tips on what you do that's done just for you and no one else. I'd love your feedback and your tips.

Until next time, keep flying on your own wings.