Author: Pilar Gerasimo

Treat Media Consumption Just Like Binge Eating

A few months ago, as I was wrapping up the next day’s work preparations and shutting down my electronics for the evening, I noticed a new email in my inbox.

It was a New York Times News Alert informing me that Osama bin Laden had been killed. The brief email offered few details but informed me that President Obama would be appearing on TV imminently with an announcement.

Compelled, I clicked the link to the promised live-video stream and waited, looking at a placeholder screen and this message:A few months ago, as I was wrapping up the next day’s work preparations and shutting down my electronics for the evening, I noticed a new email in my inbox.

It was a New York Times News Alert informing me that Osama bin Laden had been killed. The brief email offered few details but informed me that President Obama would be appearing on TV imminently with an announcement.

Compelled, I clicked the link to the promised live-video stream and waited, looking at a placeholder screen and this message:

The Pursuit of Healthiness

None of the positive changes we hope to make as a society can be sustained without the energy and resilience of a whole lot of healthy, vital people.

I have often remarked that one of the best things about editing Experience Life is hearing back from our readers that the magazine is making a difference for them as they pursue a healthier way of life. I also love hearing that they appreciate the conscious choice we’ve made to be different from a great many other health-and-fitness magazines.

Balance Schmalance

I am probably not the best person to ask about work-life balance, because, frankly, I work all the time. I get up early, do my morning practice (a mini yoga/meditation/reflection routine that can range from five to 15 minutes long), grab breakfast and a cup of coffee, and then go to my desk.

From there, I work like a woman possessed — right up until I need to go work out, or I get hungry for lunch, or I feel like my brain is shutting down. Then, for a little while, I make it a point to do something fun and relaxing that doesn’t involve too much thinking.

A Manifesto for Thriving in a Mixed-Up World:
Ten Truths We Hold to Be Self-Evident

In case you haven’t noticed, we live in a society where the idea of health and fitness is wildly popular these days, but actually becoming a truly healthy person can be mighty tough to pull off.

There’s a reason so many of us are sick, overweight, depressed and stressed out: We’re living in a society that is wired up to make us sick, overweight, depressed and stressed out.

We can change this mixed-up reality. We can reclaim our well-being and create a better, more blissful world. But it’s going to take some revolutionary moxie to make it happen.

A Meditation on Nothing

There’s something about the promise of variety, novelty and sheer quantity.

The other day, while I was at my trainer’s studio, I noticed a popular women’s fitness magazine on the coffee table. Mixed in with the usual headlines (flat belly, sexy legs, yada yada yada), one line with an eye-popping number grabbed my attention: “860 MOVES FOR A HOT UPPER BODY.”

Ten Acts of Healthy Rebellion

Pilar Gerasimo shares her top-10 list from the “101 Revolutionary Ways to Be Healthy.”

I’m a fan of Rilke’s wise advice to “live in the questions.” But lately, ever since we launched our popular “101 Revolutionary Ways to Be Healthy” app, I am getting one question that always leaves me flummoxed: Of all 101 Ways, what’s your favorite?

The problem is, there’s no way I can choose just one. I love them all. And so that question keeps nagging at me — but in a nice way.

Clutter’s Continuity

Do you know how they keep the Golden Gate Bridge looking so neat and snazzy? They paint it a lot. “Continuously,” according to the Golden Gate Bridge Highway and Transportation Web site. Basically, no sooner do they finish painting from one end to the other then they start back at the beginning and paint it all over again. The corrosive salt air eats away at the surface otherwise, so they just have to keep at it. Year in, year out.

I find it works much the same way with clutter. I am forever decluttering — my files, my closet, my purse, my kitchen counter, my entry, my car — and no sooner do I complete one pass than it’s time to begin another.

Question Authority.…
When It Comes To Health And Fitness Information

Authoritative organizations may not be your best source of advice.

As a health journalist, I rely a great deal on expert opinions and authoritative resources. But I’ve also learned to get second and third opinions, to do my own research, to follow the money and to consult my own common sense and experience.

Basically, I’ve learned to question authority (which is No. 50 of the 101 Revolutionary Ways to Be Healthy). Because what I’ve discovered is that experts and authorities of all kinds are often mistaken — sometimes about important stuff. And in my experience, they are wrong more often than they will admit to being in doubt.

The Ways of the Worried Well

These days, frankly, if you’re not at least a little concerned about your health, you’re probably not paying attention.

The first time I heard that derisive phrase — the “worried well” — my initial reaction was, “Uh oh, I’m pretty sure I fall into that category!” My second response was, “Go ahead, make fun of us if you want. I suspect we’ll have the last laugh.”

The worried well is a blanket term that describes people who are basically quite healthy, yet continually concerned about their health. But in my view, we fall into two rather distinct categories: (1) those inclined to believe they’re sick, want a pill for every ill, and who eagerly pursue every last body scan, diagnosis and prescription drug they can get their hands on; and (2) those who are intent on proactively maintaining and optimizing their well-being (even if other people make fun of them for it).

Exchanging Willpower for Willingness

We’ve been taught that following through on New Year’s resolutions is all about willpower. But it turns out that willingness may be a far more valuable ally.

One popular characterization of insanity describes it as “doing the same thing over and over, expecting to get a different result.” And at no time of the year is that particular brand of insanity more evident than right now — the dreaded resolutions season.

Every January, there’s a lot of talk about the right and wrong ways to go about making change. Techniques and strategies abound (another serving of S.M.A.R.T. goals, anyone?), but most of them share a common underlying assumption: That changing your life is an act of will.