Baroness Susan Greenfield talks about the future of Alzheimer’s

Baroness Susan Greenfield talks about Brain Plasticity and the Future of Alzheimer’s in this interview with Carpe Diem Connections.

Dr. Susan Greenfield talks about Brain Plasticity and the Future of Alzheimer’s Disease

I’ve been looking forward to my interview with Baroness Susan Greenfield since I heard her speak at the Douglas Adams Memorial lecture in March.

Besides being a world renowned neuroscientist on the verge of discovering a cure for Alzheimer’s, she’s an interesting and entertaining speaker! She’s the epitome of what many of us yearn to be: highly intelligent, funny, and working on unraveling some of the biggest mysteries of the mind, including the meaning of consciousness.

She also is an entrepreneur. In 2013, she co-founded Neuro-Bio, a company that develops diagnostic tests and therapeutics to help in the treatment of Alzheimer’s Disease.

In our interview, I asked Dr. Greenfield about her views on a cure. She mentioned the recent FDA approval of the controversial Biogen announcement of a drug claiming to slow down the progress of Alzheimer’s.

She expressed more hope and optimism about the approach and drug under development at Neuro-Bio. Though not available to the public yet due to regulatory phases, Dr. Greenfield indicated that, with fair winds, it might be “two years away.”

“We are on the case. It’s in the foreseeable future, ” she says.

I’m so impressed that a woman of this caliber would make the time to speak on my podcast. When I sent her the request, I hadn’t realized the extent of her achievements and fame.

What a honor for me to have personal time with someone of such status and influence. She is someone who is making breakthroughs in the treatment of one of the world’s most tragic diseases!

In preparing for our interview, I’ve learned so much myself about the brain and its adaptability.

I’m excited that there is hope for a cure for Alzheimer’s in the not-so-distant future and that we all can take control over maintaining a healthy brain by living life to our fullest potential!

Carpe Diem!

Alzheimer’s diagnosis motivates Dan Jaworski to fulfill his dream: Participate in the Kona Ironman

Dan Jaworski is fighting Alzheimer’s and participating in his dream of participating in the Kona Ironman.

“I thank God for the gift of TODAY – CARPE DIEM!” ~Dan Jaworski

When Dan Jaworski received a devastating diagnosis and a recommendation from his doctor to move forward on his bucket list, he knew what he needed to do.

“Within hours of my diagnosis, I contacted Sarah Hartmann at The IRONMAN Foundation. I am so grateful for this amazing opportunity to race Kona on October 9, 2021”

The month of June is Alzheimer’s and Brain Awareness Month.

You can read more about Dan and his inspirational story here. His attitude of resilience and strength is the same “Carpe Diem spirit” that I saw in my friend Craig Dunham when he was faced with an ALS Diagnosis. It’s the reason I started CarpeDiemDay.com.

Rather than ask for money, Dan asked for 140 names – one for each of the 140.6 miles of the race – of others who are battling Alzheimer’s and related diseases.

His list of 140 names, along with notes and tributes are listed on his site. And despite not asking for money, he has currently raised over $70K in donations for the Alzheimer’s Association.

Gratefully, I don’t currently know anyone personally suffering from Alzheimer’s, but I certainly understand the devastation and fear most people would have in the face of such a diagnosis.

Dan’s optimistic attitude, his drive, tenacity, and resilient spirit will most certainly work in his favor in the coming months, both in his training and in his overall health.

Let’s follow his lead! Whether it’s participating in an Ironman, writing a book, or repairing a relationship, don’t wait. Follow your dreams.

Carpe Diem!

Carpe Diem: See Free Movie Today, May 6!

Information about how you can see feel-good movie Duty Free today, May 6, 2021

This morning’s blog post in honor of Older Americans Month is to let you know about this opportunity to check out the movie, “Duty Free” for free!  But hurry and sign up. It’s today!

The movie is SO up-my-alley!  It’s about a 75-year-old woman who gets fired from her job and her son helps her make and fulfill a bucket-list of dreams. (Very much aligned with my whole Carpe Diem Day message.)

I originally got a notice from AARP about a showing today at 6pm MT.  (I just love AARP’s Movie for Grownups series.)

However, I had a conflict for tonight (It’s the second session of my Agile Workshop that I blogged about all last month.)

I was disappointed for about 5 minutes until I continued reading my emails and saw that Encore.org was also offering a free viewing earlier in the day – at 3:30pm MT! 

So, to recap, there are TWO opportunities TODAY to see Duty Free for free!

At 3:30pm MT: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/cirkel-presents-a-pre-release-screening-of-duty-free-tickets

At 6:00pm MT: https://local.aarp.org/aarp-event/movies-for-grownups-screening-duty-free-wzn83s63gg2.html

Exercise and Happiness with Sarah Schwallier

Sarah Schwallier of Strides Life introduces herself as a nature walking health coach. She has a passion for helping others be their most healthy selves and to achieve their goals, whether that’s to lose weight, build strength, or just to get moving.

In this episode of Carpe Diem Connections, Sarah and I talk about the 3rd Key to Happiness as defined by Action for Happiness: Exercise.

Sarah always adds an element of fun and playfulness to everything she does. I’ve gotten to experience this first-hand as I’ve participated in the Walk2Connect Community where Sarah is a core-coop-owner and leader.

Tune in to the podcast or the YouTube video and find out how you can stay motivated to keep exercising and why that’s so important to both our physical and our mental health!

Then join us on the Carpe Diem Facebook Group and let us know what your favorite type of exercise is.

And then go one step further and join Sarah’s TAG {Kick-Ass Accountability Group}!

Let’s Get Moving for Health and Happiness!

New Year’s Resolutions During Uncertain Times

When I tell people I’m an Agile coach, most people look skeptical – or at least confused. (I can be quite awkward in athletic endeavors.) The “Agile” adjective, in this case, refers to a philosophy and project management system that helps teams with productivity in the midst of change and uncertainty.

Without going into a big lecture answering the question “What is Agile?” (you’re welcome), I’ll just highlight a few of the concepts which might help you with your New Year’s goals during these very uncertain times.

And let’s face it, we are always facing changes and uncertainty, so you’ll probably find this is a better way to work with New Year’s Resolutions every year!

Break Your Goals into Iterations

One BIG problem with New Year’s resolutions is that a year is way too long to commit to a detailed goal.  Too many things might derail your plan. One of the keys to handling uncertainty is to execute in short iterations. You might have fuzzy high-level plans, but your detailed plan should only be for the short-term. Then you can learn and adjust as you go along if and when you run into something unexpected.

Instead of trying to lose 50 pounds in a year, maybe your high-level goal could be to develop better lifestyle habits. Your short-term goal might be to take action designed to lose some weight in the next week. It’s a lot easier to stay motivated if you think in small iterations. Big goals can seem overwhelming, but often taking that first step is just what’s needed to get motivated.  Then you can check at the end of the week to see if you lost weight and how much.

Make your specific and detailed plan just for your iteration, in this case, one week. Plan out the healthy meals you’ll make for yourself and what exercise you’ll do. Or, perhaps you’ll keep it simple by simply cutting out desserts. However, plan your details only for one week. Think of it as an experiment.

Reflect, Celebrate, Adapt

One of the most important parts of the Agile frameworks is to consistently reflect, learn, and improve.  At the end of our iteration, we would take the time to measure to see if our short-term goal to lose some weight is being accomplished with the actions we’re taking.

Whether or not the goal of losing weight was achieved, what was learned? If you lost more than expected, how did it feel? How was your energy? If you didn’t lose any weight, what will you do differently next week? 

Regardless of whether or not you lost weight, celebrate your complete week and what you learned in some way with a creative ceremony or ritual. Maybe share a new healthy recipe or go for a hike.  Plan your meals and activities for the next week, taking into account what you learned.  Personally, I’m incorporating a Self-Spa Sunday ritual, ending my week with a luxurious bubble-bath while I reflect on the ups and downs of the past week and anticipate my future week.

When the Unexpected Happens

Let’s say you have an unexpected injury and you can’t execute the short-term exercise plan you had in mind.  Go back to the original purpose of your goal.  You want to develop healthy life-style habits. Are there forms of exercise you can do, in spite of the injury? Can you adjust your meal plan for the next week to take into account the changes? Maybe your plan for the following week is to focus on PT or sleep to improve your overall health rather than trying to lose weight. Be flexible and adjust your short-term plans to take into account any changes, but keep your long-term end goals in mind. 

I’ve used healthy habits and weight-loss as an example here, but you can use these techniques for any goal. Split big goals into smaller ones, and have fun while you learn, improve, grow and celebrate along the way.

Want to Celebrate Monthly?

I’ll be hosting monthly “New Month’s Eve” virtual celebrations so that people can share progress on their goals or share a positive thing about the current month and plan for the following month. Join the Carpe Diem Connections Facebook Group to find out more.

Healthy Habits and the Optimal Living Daily – Vibely Challenge

I just LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the new year. I know, I know… it’s just like any other day and we shouldn’t “wait” to start improving ourselves, but I just get so much MoJo on January 1rst! And, honestly, I let my normally disciplined-self slack a bit in the last two weeks of the year. You know the drill… over-eat, over-drink, and generally slack on all my “goals”.. with the knowledge I’ll be super-motivated in the New Year to get back to my healthy habits!

One of those healthy habits that I’ve developed in the past couple of years is walking regularly, often while listening to inspiring podcasts. One of those podcasts is Optimal Living Daily where it was announced that 15 lucky people would receive a free OLD workbook for talking about self-care practices that have worked. I’m supposed to respond via Vibely, which is a fun app that offers challenges to the community, but.. this would be too long to type in an app! I’ll just send a link!

I’ve figured out that living a meaningful life is not just about where we physically go or what we do, but what is occupying our minds. We only have a finite number of days on this earth and I want to spend those days wisely by making intentional decisions about how I’m spending my time and who I’m spending it with. When I’m alone, my brain is still thinking and I want those to be POSITIVE thoughts!

By listening to Podcasts about positive life-style habits (such as Optimal Living Daily) and participating in various positive communities (such as those offered at Vibely) I’m regularly feeding my mind with positive ideas! I subscribe to positive newsletters, have taken 4 different really interesting courses about the Science of Happiness, have great self-help apps on my phone, and regularly interact with people who feed my soul.

Vibely, also, is fun, for people like me who love prompts and challenges! There’s an OLD (as in Optimal Living Daily.. not “senior”) community that you can find on Vibely and participating is just a really fun way to virtually meet like-minded people and follow through on your goals! My only feedback for this is that I wish there were a version for my laptop. I much prefer communicating with a full-size keyboard rather than the tiny keyboard on my (very small) phone.

All of this has changed my overall mindset to one which is much happier. Though I’ve heard it’s natural for our brains to first see the negative in the events of our day, these practices have helped me train my brain to naturally see the positive in each event… even things that in the past would have made me feel upset, I view as a challenge to find the positive. When I get criticism, it doesn’t feel good, but I now am much more able to be grateful rather than defensive about the feedback.

By the way, this isn’t the first time I’ve given a shout-out to the Optimal Living Daily podcast! It was also the spark that I needed to start my own podcast, Carpe Diem Connections!

What positive self-care habits do you have?

Joy and Food

Food! It brings me joy just thinking about it!

This week on the Carpe Diem Connections podcast, Becky Burns and I continue with the next topic in The Joy Makeover. We talk about foods that bring us joy and energy and how to be intentional about our eating habits.

We discuss the video interview between Ingrid Fetell Lee and Sarah Copeland and how coming from a mindset of abundance can help us resist overeating.

We each set goals for ourselves about how we could increase our joy with food and mine was to have a weekly new, healthy recipe. Becky suggested we check into Sarah Copeland’s recipes. What a great idea!

Another excellent resource for happiness is Happify. In my daily newsletter yesterday, there was an Infographic about why savoring makes us happier with a section about food!

What foods bring you joy? What foods energize you? Come join the discussion in the Carpe Diem Connections Facebook Group!

Patti Ashley – Authenticity Architect

I had the great pleasure of talking to Patti Ashley this week on my Carpe Diem Connections Podcast.

What exactly is an “Authenticity Architect?” Patti explains in this video, but basically, she provides courses, tools, and resources to help you “excavate your authentic self.”

She’s offering a free course that’s called, “Go In, Not Out: Finding Deeper Parts of Yourself in Challenging Times,” designed specifically for these stressful days of the pandemic.

During my conversation with Patti, and then follow-on conversations with friends, I realized how many times we don’t talk to others about our problems or relationship challenges.. and then when we do, we learn that others are having very similar problems.

Often we don’t talk about our challenges out of shame, embarrassment, or perhaps we feel we shouldn’t be negative.. However, when we do share and are met with empathy, and find we aren’t alone, we can move forward with authenticity.

Resources: