Factors that Contribute to Aging Well

Aging is a topic that I am very familiar with because most of my social work career has been spent working with seniors. Because of that this article caught my attention and am excited to share with you what I learned from it.

The article is named ‘New study finds 6 ways to slow memory decline and lower dementia risk’ and was written by Annabelle Timsit, in the Washington Post. You can read the full article at the link below!


A Study of Hope

There was a recent study in China that took place over a ten year period. The goal of the study was to see if lifestyle and healthy behaviors decreased cognitive decline. There were 29,000 seniors that participated in this 10 year study, which is amazing!! I find it incredible for any study to gather so much data from so many people in such a long period of time!

There were six factors that they looked at to see if they impacted memory decline:

  1. Physical Exercise: Doing at least 150 minutes of moderate exercise weekly
  2. Eating a Balanced Diet: at least 7 of these 12 food items fruits, vegetables, fish, meat, dairy products, salt, oil, eggs, cereals, legumes, nuts and tea.
  3. Alcohol Intake: Not at all or occasionally
  4. Smoking: never have smoked or a former smoker
  5. Cognitive Exercise: at least twice a week
  6. Social Contact: engaging with others twice a week

The study grouped people by how many of these factors they engaged in. The first group engaged in four of the six factors, the second group engaged in two to three factors, and the last group engaged in zero to one of the factors.

The study found that the group that engaged in four to six factors experienced less cognitive decline then those in the other two groups. Annabelle Timsit wrote:

“The results show that “more is better of these behaviors,” says Hogervorst — in other words, the more healthy lifestyle factors you can combine, the better your chances of preserving your memory and staving off dementia.”

Annabelle Timsit, 2023

The study even found that people who had genetic predisposition towards memory loss and Alzheimer’s were seeing less cognitive decline when increasing these healthy behaviors!! I love this because it gives hope that we can make choices that help use to age well and keep our brain thriving!

Are there any of these six behaviors that you plan to increase or focus on in your life?


Timsit, A. (2023). “New study finds 6 ways to slow memory decline and lower dementia risk” Washington Post. https://www.washingtonpost.com/wellness/2023/01/26/dementia-memory-loss-lifestyle-habits/

My 7 Must Have Essential Oils

7 Must have Essential Oils

I use essential oils regularly as apart of my wellness and self-care routines. I wanted to share with you my must have list of essential oils. This post does contain referral links.

1. Lavender Essential 0il

Lavender is my number one go to oil, as it is for a lot of people. I am anxiety prone and lavender as such a soothing and comforting scent. I always include Lavender in my melt and pour soaps, face toner, and it also makes a really great room spray!

2. Lemon Essential Oil

Lemon is definitely a staple oil for me as well! I often add lemon into my diffuser blends. I also add Lemon essential oil into my washer with my laundry tablet when I wash my clothes.

3. Orange Essential Oil

Orange essential oil is great for many things! I also will add this into my laundry sometimes with lemon. I also include orange essential oil in my roller bottle recipes for energy. Orange is very uplifting and energizing oil.

4. Grapefruit Essential Oil

Grapefruit essential oil is great! I am using it now as an alternative to orange essential oil in my laundry. I also always include it in my citrus blends. This is a very refreshing scent.

5. Marjoram Essential Oil

This was one of the first essential oils that I started using regularly in my wellness routines. Marjoram essential oil has properties in it that help me with pain. I make a spray with marjoram oil and fractionated coconut oil and spray it directly on areas that I’m having a lot of pain. I typically will do this before bed and it helps me a lot.

6. Bergamot Essential Oil

Bergamot is another great essential oil for stress and anxiety. I love to add this oil to my felt ball diffusers in my car when I’m driving and to my roller bottle recipes for anxiety.

7. Frankincense Essential Oil

Frankincense is a great oil with many medicinal properties. I have added it to many different recipes, but I like it most in roller bottle recipes. If I am going through a season with a lot of neurological issues from my chronic illness I will make a daily roller bottle with frankincense to help bring some relief.

Benefits of Journaling

I am a life-long journal-writer and it has been essential during many seasons of my life. There are so many great mental and emotional benefits to journaling. It is not only a great way to process your thoughts, it’s also great for writing out plans and progress towards your goals!

Below is a brief video I made about the benefits of journaling. You can find more videos like this on my YouTube Channel.

Benefits of Bergamot Essential Oil


Bergamot is a sweet and spicy citrus essential oil! It comes from the fruit of the bergamot orange tree (Whelan, 2018). Bergamot is used for food and can be distilled to be used for essential oils. Bergamot trees were originally grown in Southeast Asia, but are now also known for being grown in Italy (Whelan, 2018).

Benefits of Using Bergamot

Bergamot is known for having some medicinal uses and has anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties (Whelan, 2018). These properties contribute to bergamot being used to help with acne and irritated scalp (Whelan, 2018). Bergamot is also known for helping relieve feelings of anxiety and sadness (Tagger, 2023). I also use Bergamot in DIY body care recipes for increasing my energy. It has a very uplifting and soothing scent. Bergamot is a citrus oil and can cause photosensitivity. Be careful to not put bergamot directly on your skin without being diluted. Can cause skin to be sensitive in the sun.

These claims have not been evaluated by the FDA.

Three Ways to Use Bergamot

The number of drops used in these ideas are based on a health adult. If you are sensitive or unsure about how your body responds to essential oils use a much smaller amount to begin with or talk with your doctor first. Look up more specific recommendations for children, seniors, and pregnant women.

  1. Combine Bergamot essential oil with a carrier oil in a roller bottle. I normally add 10 drops.
  2. Add Bergamot essential oil to an aromatic diffuser with water. I usually add 2-3 drops.
  3. Add Bergamot essential oil to melt and pour soaps. For 1 pound of soap I normally add 50 drops of essential oils. Bergamot would also go great in combination with Lavender essential oil.


Tagger, M. (2023). “Bergamot oil: Benefits, uses & side effects” https://www.hollandandbarrett.com/the-health-hub/natural-beauty/aromatherapy/what-is-bergamot/

Whelan, C. (2018). “About Bergamot Oil” https://www.healthline.com/health/bergamot-oil

5 Benefits of Using Aroma Diffusers

There are many ways to integrate essential oils into your wellness routines! One of the most common ways is through using aromatic diffusers. There are two types of aromatic diffusers:

  • Active diffusers are either electric or battery operated appliances that uses water to carry the essential oils into the air.
  • Passive diffusers are solitary materials that carry essential oils. Common passive diffusers are lava beads and felt. I often use felt balls for passive diffusers.

Benefits of Using Diffusers

Essential oils are strong and come from plants with medicinal and therapeutic properties. Using an aromatic diffuser can be helpful in many ways! Here are several ways diffusers can be beneficial:

  • Fills the air with essential oils quickly.
  • Allows you to inhale the essential oils and potentially experience the benefits of the essential oils being diffused. Be careful to only diffuse essential oils that are safe for all in your household.
  • Can help relieve stress and promote relaxation (Cronkleton, 2019).
  • Can help increases clarity, focus, and attention (Homesick, 2020).
  • Can cleanse the air with the some of the essential oils antibacterial and antifungal properties (Lane, 2022)


Cronkleton, E. (2019) “How to Use Essential Oilshttps://www.healthline.com/health/how-to-use-essential-oils

Homesick (2020) “16 Essential Oil Diffuser Benefits” https://homesick.com/blogs/news/16-essential-oil-diffuser-benefits

Lane, J. (2022) “12 Essential Oils Diffuser Benefits for Health and Wellness” https://www.lovingessentialoils.com/blogs/essential-oil-tips/108254726-12-essential-oils-diffuser-benefits

Journal Prompt: Gratitude

Gratitude is so important for our wellness!! It allows us to focus on positive things and has the power the change our perspective and therefore our actions.

Journal Prompt

Write 5 things you are grateful for today?

What about each of these things is important to you?

How can you express your gratitude to the people around you?

Lavender Essential Oil Spotlight


Lavender is originally native to Northern Africa and the Mediterranean region, and is often harvested for the purpose of being distilled to become essential oils and for medicinal uses (Nordqvist, 2019). Lavender is apart of the lamiaceae family, which is the mint family of flowering plants (The Editors of Encyclopedia Britannica).

Benefits of Lavender

The lavender plant is known for having many benefits including (Nordqvist, 2019; Bowman, 2021):

  • Relieves Anxiety
  • Helps alleviate difficulty sleeping
  • Anti-Inflammatory
  • Aides in the healing of burns and wounds
  • Decreases nausea
  • Decreases upset stomach and abdominal swelling
  • Helps with Acne
  • Decreases eczema
  • Helps with Headaches
  • Treats Hair loss

These statements have not been reviewed by the FDA, but have been observed by people who have used essential oils or consumed the lavender plant (Nordqvist, 2019). If using for internal concerns you can use lavender blossoms in tea or in recipes. Though some people drink essential oils it is not recommended due it being so potent.

How I Use Lavender

I use Lavender blossoms and essential oil in a variety of ways. I use the essential oil in my body care recipes, in my aromatic diffuser, in my roller bottles for use on my skin, and have made room sprays with it. I have also cooked with lavender blossoms to make lavender cookies and I enjoy lavender tea as well. Below is a recent blog post where I shared a recipe that I use that involves Lavender Essential Oil.

You can find Organic Plant Therapy Lavender Essential Oil for sale in the Blooming Resilient Shop at the link below!


J. Bowman, (2021). The Many Benefits of Lavender for Mood, Sleep, Hair, and Skin. https://www.healthline.com/health/what-lavender-can-do-for-you

J. Nordqvist, (2019). What are the health benefits and risks of lavender? https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/265922

The Editors of Encyclopedia Britannica. https://www.britannica.com/plant/lavender

Essential Oils

I love using essential oils! A few years ago, I didn’t know anything about them until a friend taught me how to make body care products using natural ingredients and essential oils. Then I went to a Doterra party with my aunt and discovered all the other ways you can use essential oils and was hooked! There are so many awesome ways that you can incorporate essential oils into your daily life and into your wellness. This is why I am so excited to add essential oils to the Blooming Resilient Shop! I wanted to share with you why I chose Plant Therapy essential oils and some ways that you can use them in your daily life!

Plant Therapy

Plant therapy offers affordable therapeutic grade essential oils. This amazing company began as a family-owned business that thrived to become a large essential oil, body care, and CBD oil supplier. They do have several brick-and-mortar retail stores in addition to their online store. Their oils go through rigorous testing and are coded with a batch number in order to ensure the therapeutic grade quality of each bottle. This brand strives to provide affordable prices for their products by not having their customers buy through direct sales associates. The essential oils that are for sale in my shop, I purchased in bulk in order to resell. I wanted to do this because I love using essential oils myself and wanted to have them available as a wellness product on my blog.

Highlighted Oils

There are several different oils in stock in the shop! Below is the list of the current oils! You can click on the links to see each oil in the Blooming Resilient Shop, which has the description and price for each one.

How I Use Essential Oils

I use essential oils in a variety of ways. Below is a list of ways!

  • Body Care Recipes
  • In the Laundry
  • Room Diffuser
  • Jewelry Diffuser
  • Room Spray
  • Cleaning Sprays

I look forward to sharing with you what I have learned through using essential oils and learning together new ways to use them!

Yoga Practice

Yoga is one of the forms of exercise that I enjoy the most. It is strangely invigorating and calming all at the same time. It helps strengthen and stretch our muscles. It is also a great way to build inner physical and mental resilience!

My Yoga Journey

I first started looking into yoga after going to Pilates class at the Kroc, in Dayton. I have since then enjoyed doing various yoga workouts at home, at the gym, and with others. During the pandemic I researched a yoga workout that would work well for me and began doing it as a part of my home workout routine. After that I started going to yoga at the YMCA and learned even more poses and exercises that have been beneficial for my body. I am not an expert, but merely an enthusiast that has seen the many benefits of doing yoga practice. It has improved my flexibility, increased my strength, provides a sense of calm and relaxation and allows me to focus better. There are times when I am tired and can hardly focus at work, so I take a brief break to do a short yoga pose flow and it allows me to refocus my mind.

When I first started doing my routine at home I took it very slowly. I first focused on how to do each pose and having the correct alignment. Once I had the poses down I was then able to focus on the flow of transitioning from one pose to the next. I grew more in my comfortability and understanding of yoga while taking classes at the YMCA. I appreciated that the yoga instructors always encouraged participants to listen to their bodies and to do moves and poses in a way that fits their own body. I love that it does not have to look like the person next to you and can still have great benefits for your body. The slow and intentional pace of yoga allows your body to adapt and change.

Below is an illustration that I licensed from Adobe Stock that has one of my favorite yoga flows. I do grow tired of downward dog after a while, but I love the feeling of this flow of movement.

Thank you for reading about my yoga journey! I would love to know how yoga has impacted you! Comment below!

How to Improve Thought Patterns

Importance of Capturing Your Thoughts

I have found that paying attention to my thoughts is very important to my wellbeing! When I let my thoughts go unchecked I start to be in negative thought patterns, vicious cycles of disappointment thinking of all the things that I “should” do and assuming what others are thinking. None of these patterns are helpful and it takes being intentional to notice these thoughts in yourself to create change. Paying attention to our thoughts is essential to our mental and emotional health.

Change Your Thoughts and You’ll Change The World – quote by Norman Vincent Peale written on vintage wooden board. Motivational concept image

Common Thought Distortions

One of the books about resilience that I have enjoyed is by Dr. Glenn R. Schiraldi, called The Resilience Workbook. This book has a lot of helpful information and exercises for building resilience and overcoming past stress and trauma. Below is a list from Dr. Schiraldi of common thought distortions:

  1. Flaw Fixation: getting stuck on all the things that we consider to be wrong, undesirable, or negative.
  2. Dismissing the Positive: choosing to not notice, accept, or believe the positive in a situation or about yourself.
  3. Assuming: this could look like thinking that you know what someone else is thinking without them expressing themselves or predicting what you think will happen as fact.
  4. Labeling: when we reduce ourselves, others, or a situation down to one characteristic.
  5. Overgeneralizing: thinking that a certain type of situation always or never happens.
  6. All-or-None Thinking: I find when I am engaging in this kind of thinking I am wanting to either have everything exactly as I want it and am all in or I totally walk away and don’t invest any of myself. In this thought process solutions in the middle are not considered.
  7. Comparison: Comparing someone’s situation to your own, but often it is comparing someone else’s best to your worst.
  8. Catastrophizing: thinking the worst is going to happen.
  9. Emotional Logic: making decisions based solely on emotion and not considering the facts of the situation.
  10. Should Statements: when you have rules or beliefs of what life has to be like.
  11. Personalizing: believing something is about you personally, without considering other possibilities or circumstances.
  12. Blaming: not taking responsibility for our own thoughts, words, and actions.

Looking at a list like this can be overwhelming because chances are we might be struggling with several of these thought processes. Next, we will look how to focus in on one of these thought processes and start the process of making change!

Changing Thought Cycles

Sometimes it can feel very difficult to change our thought processes especially when we have been thinking a certain way for a long time. When I was first trying to change my thought processes I first reflected on which one caused the most difficulties in my life. Or consider which one is holding you back the most from goals you are working on. Making changes is not only about what we won’t do, but figuring out what we will do instead. For example one of my struggles is assuming what other people are thinking. So when I catch myself doing this I remind myself that I am not a mind reader or that I can only control my thoughts, words and actions. Once I’ve reminded myself of this I take a step back and look at the facts. What did the person actually say? What circumstances were happening that led me to assume their thoughts? And what do I actually know about the situation based on these things? Here are these steps laid out below:

  1. What thought distortion do you want to work on?
  2. How can you replace this thought process with a new health thought process?
  3. Are there circumstances that trigger this thought distortion?

The awesome thing about our brain is that the more we practice a skill and put our attention to it, the more our brain adapts to support the new thought process or habit. It might take time, but you have the power to change your brain and to change your thoughts! Take time to reflect on this! Leave a comment below of what action step you are going to take!


Schiraldi, G. (2017). The Resilience Workbook. New Harbinger Publications, Inc.