Well That Sounds Interesting!

Hello friends!

September rushed by in such a whirlwind that this is the first issue of my newsletter since the summer holidays! The good news is: that means I have lots to share with you!

I’m also trying my hand at using a professional newsletter template for this missive, so I would be thrilled with any feedback, tips, or constructive criticism to make it better and more appealing to you.

So the Fall is really my version of the New Year. That back-to-school feeling fills me with lots of positive energy, as well as the drive to get more organized. {A lot of this centers around new coloured pens and gorgeous new stationery and notebooks!}

This Fall I have a couple of key goals that I’m focused on: time management and digestive health.  

So anyone who knows me well knows I love organizing, colour-coding, labelling, and notebooks with great quality paper. (And I’m quite fond of my handwriting too so great pens & paper are key for that!)

One of my favourite leadership development podcasts, Lead to Win, showcased their sister podcast a few weeks back and the podcast episode was all about time management. Rather serendipitous timing, given I was thinking about changing/improving my time management system! I thought I’d give it a try. And well, ever since I got my new planner, I’ve basically been singing its praises to everyone who will listen. I’m in organizing heaven!! And the time management podcast is awesome!! Well worth a listen. The episode on creating the “Ideal Week” schedule is particularly brilliant.   

For lots of reasons, I’ve been really interested in the intersection of digestive, hormonal, and mental health. Having hypothyroidism, and diverticulosis, as well as being quite deeply in perimenopause has wreaked havoc on multiple facets of my health over the past months. And so my ears have been tuned in to mentions of this topic too.

It started with reading Darm mit Charme [the English version is Gut] – a brilliant book about our “most underrated organ”. You wouldn’t think a book on the intestine would make for an interesting read, but it absolutely did! It was so cleverly written. Not dumbed down, but also written in such an engaging manner that you just had to keep reading. I learned a lot, but the key takeaway from the book (aside from that our toilets are not ergonomically correct for pooping!) is that 90% of our serotonin (aka the Happy Hormone) is produced in our gut. 90%!!! So if your gut ain’t happy, you ain’t happy.

Hmm. That got me thinking.

Then The Gut Health MD showed up in my Instagram feed. Coincidence?? I think not. Turns out he’s a gastroenterologist and he talks a lot about dysbiosis – when your gut microbiome is out of whack. And a lot of it rang true for me. So when his book Fiber Fueled came out this spring, I thought it sounded worth a read.

And it was! It really convinced me to at least give plant-based eating a try. And hey, anyone who is going to come up with a 28-day menu plan for me, complete with shopping list is on my Nice List!! I don’t mind cooking, and I like eating healthy, but meal planning is the bane of my existence. “What’s for dinner?” might just be the most annoying question on earth! So I was willing to give the plant-based eating thing a try, just to save myself from menu planning for a month! 😉

The good news – and simultaneously perhaps the bad news – is that I have been following the plant-based eating plan for 3 weeks now and I feel fabulous! So. Much. Better. My digestive system is working better, I have more energy, I feel a lot more clear-headed. Does this mean I have to be vegan for the rest of my life?!?! I’m not sure. But it’s been a really cool journey so far. I’m not a food photographer, so these photos really don’t do the recipes justice but the food is amazing. The Saag Tofu is to die for!

Given how much is at stake with digestive, mental, and hormonal health all tied together, this might be an answer for me. I’ll keep you posted!



JNH-favourite-books

Last but not least: books!!

So many of my friends and family ask me what I’m reading and this will be a key portion of the newsletter going forward! (Although I promise to work on being a bit more concise too!)

This was my summer reading. We did a 7-day digital detox while at the cottage, and turns out you can read a LOT of books when you are neither at work nor on a device!!

Fiction-wise, this summer’s standouts were The Book of Negroes and The Huntress.

The Book of Negroes was recommended to me loads when it came out a few years ago, as the author is Canadian and the book won the Commonwealth Prize in 2015. But it seemed like it would be such a depressing, heavy story and I confess that didn’t appeal to me. However, with all that’s happening in the world right now, I felt that this was the right time to read it. And I am so glad I did!! Yes, the subject matter – slavery – is not an easy topic. And yet the author managed to write a compelling and engaging story that was hard to put down!! It was a brilliant read.

I loved The Alice Network, and was keen to read the author’s next novel, The Huntress. And it did not disappoint! Strong female leads, great historical fiction, made this a perfect beach read.

Auf Deutsch

Denjenigen, die lieber auf Deutsch lesen wollen, kann ich die Waringham Saga von Rebecca Gable sehr empfehlen. Ich habe im Frühling den 5. und 6. Band der Saga gelesen und fand den 6. Band „Teufelskrone“ am allerbesten. So spannend! Genau die Ablenkung, die ich gebraucht habe. Man kann in diesem Buch richtig versinken, die Geschichte genießen und die Welt um einen herum komplett vergessen. Ein Traum!

Hope this has piqued your interest in exploring a new idea, book, podcast or thought process!

And please do feel free to share!

Hugs,

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