Arla Caraboolad – If I Knew Then What I Know Now

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Life Lessons From Adults To Children
Today’s Guest – Arla Caraboolad

1. Your message to kids today that you wish you knew back then what you currently know now. Be specific.

I wish I had known how important it is to be open and vulnerable. Being real is so important, and so little is done to teach it.

2. How did you learn your lesson or what was your lesson? Did you get hurt, did you upset someone, did you get scared?

Life and God have taught me through divorce and as I’ve listened to thousands of stories from my therapy clients. My daughter was hurt to be sure and has repeated my pattern. (We usually do repeat our parents mistakes and patterns.) And that has hurt her children.

3. What you would have done differently back then if you could turn back time.

Try more things to see what you are good at (definitely not drugs). Stay away from drugs, especially weed, it robs you of ambition and caring.

4. Do you convey this message to children in your life today?

Absolutely! If you don’t have parents you can talk to find an adult you admire to mentor you. If you have terrible, out-of-control parents ask to go to therapy–especially if you’ve been abused. Don’t blame yourself for other people’s problems, but take every chance to know yourself, and if you are wrong admit it.

I am so grateful that my parents were responsible even though not very open or enlightened. And I am so very grateful that I started looking for a relationship with God early in life. That has made all the difference. I’m so glad I went to college instead of getting married.

Arla Caraboolad, Marriage and Family Systems Therapist

Kathryn Williams – If I Knew Then What I Know Now

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Life Lessons From Adults To Children
Today’s Guest – Kathryn Williams

Had I realized the power of filling one’s passion I would have pursued a career in the creative world of art instead of all of the years I spent in business. I am happy I learned this ultimately and I am sure my business experience helps me navigate the waters of my own business but physically, I believe I would be further in my pursuit today if I knew this earlier.

If you are wondering what you want to do in your career, think about what makes you happy today. What do you do in your spare time that gifts joy? For me, I spend hours writing and drawing but I didn’t pursue this because I didn’t think I could support a comfortable lifestyle as an artist. After reaching a $100,000 plus annual salary, I realized if you do not love what you are doing, life is harsh and your career is just a job without any real fulfillment. Money is helpful in life but it doesn’t buy true joy. This is manifested through inner fulfillment.

My lesson manifested through health problems tied to on the job stress. My job was 24/7 with business crisis hours on the weekend and evening. I put in long days and traveled a lot too. It was difficult to achieve happiness while feeling unhealthy and exhausted. I was afraid to transition into a career after many years in business but in 2008, I lost my job shortly after losing my father and, during this time, I decided I needed to put my energy into making a positive change in the world. Today I use my art as a path to healing I offer to my community.

My area of expertise offers testimony to the therapeutic powers of the creative spirit. Creative endeavors align the mind, body and spirit. This is a life tool that many do not realize and it is my mission to surface this holistic path to those in need of it. I have a healthy living column on Examiner.com, I am an artist and published author and I am a graduate student currently in a Mental Health Counseling program. I have overcome many life hardships, an upbringing touched by poor economics, domestic violence and alcoholism, divorce and job loss as an adult, bereavement and much more. I am healthy today because of my creative spirit.

– Kathryn Williams, Artist/author, Lifetime Art Impressions, LLC

Dr. Erica Whitlock – If I Knew Then What I Know Now

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Life Lessons From Adults To Children
Today’s Guest – Dr. Erica Whitlock

Dr. Erica Whitlock writes: Looking back, I remember phrases such as “Eat your green beans. They make you strong!”€ or “€œAn apple a day keeps the doctor away.” How many times does a child hear this and actually understand the absolute importance of “€œeating your vegetables?” From birth to the late teen years, immense changes are occurring within the body from brain development to bone growth and it is so important to capture this time of development and help advance it in the best way possible. On a biological level, eating fruits and vegetables can decrease inflammation, boost the immune system and improve brain function and these are just a fraction of the benefits! With the knowledge and experience I have now, I would have eaten more fruits and vegetables.

Through post-graduate nutrition courses and similar seminars, my eyes began to slowly open and realize the life-changing importance of healthy eating. Reaching for processed foods on the shelves of supermarkets was no longer appealing, as I realized I was only robbing my body of sustaining minerals and nutrients. With this, I decided to make a drastic change. I decided to implement a purification program that consisted of consuming only fruits and vegetables for 21 days. Which, in essence, means no ranch dressing, no bread, and no pasta, etc. etc. This program is not about being a vegetarian, it’€™s more than that. It’€™s about removing any food that may be causing stress or toxicity in your body. The first 3-4 days of the program was both challenging and difficult, as I was constantly tempted to reach for a bag of chips or a slice of bread. But, without cheating, I prevailed, and by day 21, I was feeling more energetic, rejuvenated, and healthier than I had ever before.

saladheartsmallThe results to me, spoke louder than any nutrition course I could have ever taken. After the program, I knew I needed to make a more permanent change, but I wanted more than just fruits and vegetables. So currently, my meals consist mainly of fruits and vegetables, and then I add other foods to my plate. In return, I have gained a healthy balance and am grateful for the education and experience that directed me along the healthier path. My husband and I do not have any children of our own yet, but we are very active in the lives of our 2 nieces. When we spend time with them, we only make healthy options available. So, instead of the question “Would you like fruit or crackers?; “we instead ask “Would you like an apple or an orange?”€ This tactic has been very effective, and as they continue to grow, I look forward to teaching them more about the benefits of healthy choices. I wish I had understood them better as a child!

– Dr. Whitlock is the director of physical therapy at SpineCARE Therapy, a division of Minimally Invasive SpineCARE. Dr. Whitlock specializes in the evaluation, treatment and rehabilitation of the neck, back and extremities, with a particular expertise in prenatal and pediatric chiropractics.

Anett Hrubiak – If I Knew Then What I Know Now

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Life Lessons From Adults To Children
Today’s Guest – Anett Hrubiak

1. Your message to kids today that you wish you knew back then what you currently know now. Be specific.

I wish I had more commonsense and not been driven by my feelings so much. Each time I made a change in my life, I followed my emotions only and I did not care about future consequences. For example I left a job just because my boss had been fired, however the board would have kept me with the new boss. I felt such compassion towards my boss, that I risked my own carrier and reputation.

2. How did you learn your lesson or what was your lesson? Did you get hurt, did you upset someone, did you get scared?

My lesson was here to balance my emotions and not to take immediate reactions, by thinking before acting. I got hurt by the new boss, she was shouting at me twice for no reason, but with my decision I definetely upset the board members of the chamber who insisted on my staying. In a way they were cheated by me.

3. What you would have done differently back then if you could turn back time.

I would stand up for myself and communicate my bad feelings with the new boss and try to build a bridge of understanding towards each other’s reactions. I would sit down and negotiate, giving it a chance, not running away, supposing that in another life situation I do not have to experience and face my lack of self-esteem and self-confidence.

4. Do you convey this message to children in your life today?

Yes, I would strongly emphasize one thing: always give a achance to situations arising in your life no matter what. Fight your battle, face your “enemy”, say what you think is right at that moment, talk from your heart and see the bigger picture, by stepping out of the situation for a moment and putting your emotions aside.

– Anett Hrubiak, traner of self development Female wholeness, Balassagyarmat, Pest Hungary

Tom Barthel – If I Knew Then What I Know Now

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Life Lessons From Adults To Children
Today’s Guest – Tom Barthel

1. Your message to kids today that you wish you knew back then what you currently know now. Be specific.

I know now is that emotions and thoughts need to be talked about with other people who I feel safe talking to and understand me. ALL THOUGHTS AND FEELINGS. I also know now how to truly grasp exactly how many different thoughts and feelings I am really having and how to not hide them from myself. My message is basically the same, except they need to find other adults that feel safe to talk to, and avoid disclosing information (at first) to adults that don’t’ feel safe. they can also talk to other kids but should only pick kids that also feel comfortable, and preferably have had the exact same problem so they can identify, even if they are kids they aren’t familiar with.

2. How did you learn your lesson or what was your lesson? Did you get hurt, did you upset someone, did you get scared?

I was a straight A student with a national citizenship award and then I developed a critically low self esteem in high school, had the early beginnings of mental illness start to affect my thoughts, then I fell in with the trouble crowd, learned to drink, use drugs, get into massive trouble and break the law, made news papers, became a drug dealer and addict, and then became mentally ill with schizophrenia at 23 years old and tried to commit suicide. recovered, went to 12 step programs, became obsessed with psychology, self taught myself alternative strategies, beat all my problems and got my sanity back, studied motivational speakers, started speaking myself, and have become fully aware of how important questioning our thoughts and feelings are.

3. What you would have done differently back then if you could turn back time.

I speak in high schools to kids and tell exactly what I just told you, I teach them how to talk to adults about what’s going on inside them.

4. Do you convey this message to children in your life today?

Yes. everywhere I go.

– Tom Barthel, speaker, author, Streetsmart Counselling

Marta Rode – If I Knew Then What I Know Now

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Life Lessons From Adults To Children
Today’s Guest – Marta Rode

1. Your message to kids today that you wish you knew back then what you currently know now. Be specific.

I wish I knew more about autoimmune disease. I wish I knew how hard life is with so many of them and that if any of my family had one of the 100+ diseases I was at higher risk of getting one myself. I wish that I knew that if you had one, even a minor one like eczema that this opens the door to some potentially deadly ones and being aware of what goes into my body can be the difference between a healthy productive life or a life with chronic illness and way too much time spent in doctor’s offices or hospitals. I wish I knew that 1 out of 5 Americans (and by association Canadians) are dealing with an autoimmune disease or disorder and out of that 20% of our population 70% are females. I wish I would have known that autoimmune disease is one of the top ten causes of death for female children and women under 65 years old.

2. How did you learn your lesson or what was your lesson? Did you get hurt, did you upset someone, did you get scared?

I learned my lesson the hard way by acquiring one of those diseases. There are about 140 some of which are rare, some are very rare and some are not rare at all like MS, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Lupus, Ciliac, Crohn’s, Type 1 Diabetes, and on and on. I have one of the rarer ones, Wegener’€™s Granulomatosis, but when you look past the part of the human anatomy being affected, it’€™s no different from all the others on the list. All of us have an immune system that has stopped recognizing the difference between self and non self and is attacking its own vessel. My lesson was that there is a gaping hole in the information about this disease group as a whole that can help people make more educated and conscious decisions in their life that could eliminate contact with a possible trigger if you happen to be predisposed. I got motivated. Motivated into action to do everything in my power to change this and unite all of those with autoimmune diseases to stand together and raise that needed awareness that can save lives.

3. What you would have done differently back then if you could turn back time?

Had I known this info before I got sick I would have done greater research into foods that can help prevent and deal with minor inflammatory responses, I would have stayed away from having contact with anything that would increase the normal immune response to higher than normal levels. I would also have gone in the right direction at the onset of symptoms (currently getting diagnosed with an autoimmune disease is a long, difficult process rife with insinuations of hypochondria and melodrama from society and the medical profession – through no fault of their own, it’s a lack of knowledge and education in this field) and possibly could have had the possibility to reverse the process rather than being stuck with a lifelong incurable disease.

4. Do you convey this message to children in your life today?

Yes, I convey this message to my daughter, to my friends, my community and anyone willing to listen. I wish everyone knows now what I wish I knew then. I started Pajama Day to raise awareness and we have now had two with it growing exponentially. We now have interest from large corporate sponsors and I will make sure this piece of info snowballs forward and reaches maximum velocity to a point where we will find the common thread to all these diseases and autoimmune will no longer be a problem.

5. Anything else you`d like to add?

Here’s a page on my blog that will give you a rundown of our last two PJ Day events in Jasper. We managed to get a TV Breakfast Show to come up and shoot their entire 3.5 hour show live from our town where the Second Annual PJ Day was taking place. You will find links to those live shots, as well as photo links and viedos of our evening show.

– Marta Rode

Paige Arnof-Fenn – If I Knew Then What I Know Now

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Life Lessons From Adults To Children
Today’s Guest – Paige Arnof-Fenn

1. Your message to kids today that you wish you knew back then what you currently know now. Be specific.

I wish I had realized that my definition of success would change over time so that I would not have gotten so hung up on things that really did not matter (office politics, bad bosses, top bonus possible, etc.). I was in such a rush back then to be promoted and receive recognition for my career achievements but really it was much more important long term just to learn my craft and build a strong reputation which I was doing but did not appreciate until much later in my career. I had no idea back then then I would not stay on the corporate path and become an entrepreneur instead and that would in fact be a much happier route for a fulfilling life. I ended up learning a lot more from my tough bosses and career setbacks than I would have if things had gone smoothly. Sometimes not getting what you think you want is actually a gift but that can be hard to see at the time. At 47 I am very grateful for all the bumps and bruises along the way.

2. How did you learn your lesson or what was your lesson? Did you get hurt, did you upset someone, did you get scared?

As the motto of my high school states, discumus agere agendo, you learn to do by doing. I have learned patience, compassion, humility, gratitude through my life experience.

3. What you would have done differently back then if you could turn back time.

I would have chilled out more, gotten less stressed over little things, taken more creative classes in college, and never take my health for granted.

4. Do you convey this message to children in your life today?

I try to share these lessons with my nieces, nephews & godkids every chance I get!

– Paige Arnof-Fenn, Founder & CEO, Mavens & Moguls

Sharon Pelham – If I Knew Then What I Know Now

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Life Lessons From Adults To Children
Today’s Guest – Sharon Pelham

I wish I knew that I am fine just the way that I am and that what I think of myself is far more important than what anyone else thinks. I have large, almond-shaped eyes, and I didn’t start to dislike them until I was in high school when a boy that I had a crush on called me “fish eyes” in front of others.

I remember being stunned and hurt that someone would say something like that, especially about a physical attribute that I couldn’t change. I just stood there before saying something like, ‘I do not!’ while his friends laughed.

It was in that moment that I gave another person the power to influence how I felt about myself. And that is a dangerous thing to do. Every attribute that others admired in me melted away in light of one person’s cruel remark said to get a laugh and boost his ego. I don’t even remember his name, but I won’t forget how those words made me feel and how I began to look at myself differently as a result of them being spoken.

From then on I wanted to, but couldn’t, make my eyes smaller; however, I could look away when someone was speaking directly to me. Why? Because in my mind if the person focused on my eyes, they would see how big they are and how much I looked like a fish, all because someone told me they did. I didn’t have enough self-confidence or self-esteem to know that my eyes were and are just fine the way they are.

It didn’t matter what my parents or friends said, I let what he said mean more than what I thought. Even worse, I internalized it. Some years after the high school incident, during an exam for my first pair of glasses, the simple words of my optometrist made me realize that I should be grateful for my large, almond-shaped eyes. You have wonderful eyes for glasses he said. I mumbled something about them being so large and he said, very quietly, “Do you know what some people would give to be able to have your eyes, to be able to see? “œ In that moment, I realized that I was blessed to have my sight and that I should be thankful for it. And I stopped being defensive about the size of my eyes.

I’d held on to what someone else thought about one of my physical attributes for far too long. What a relief it was to take that power away from someone who had no right to it in the first place. During the years and romantic relationships that followed, I‘ve received compliments on my eyes. I appreciate them, but I don’t take them to heart.

My eyes are beautiful because I believe they are and that is what matters and I tell the children and young adults in my life that all the time. One last thought: Knowing what I do now, if I had an opportunity to go back to that day in high school my response to my ‘crush’ would have gone something like this: Really? Is that lame, stupid remark the best you can do?  I then would have rolled my ‘big eyes’ and walked away.

– Sharon Pelham, Founder, Executive Consultant, Smith Carey Communications

Emily Westerfield – If I Knew Then What I Know Now

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Life Lessons From Adults To Children
Today’s Guest – Mike Domitrz

1. Your message to kids today that you wish you knew back then what you currently know now. Be specific.

As a professional speaker, Author, owner, and educator of the Date Safe Project. I want to send messages to parents and kids on the importance of safe and healthy dating, making the right choices in relationships, covering topics such as sexual assault, intimacy, and making the right choices. I wish that kids knew how to feel comfortable enough with themselves to stand up and speak out on what they want.

2. How did you learn your lesson or what was your lesson? Did you get hurt, did you upset someone, did you get scared?

My lesson learned was an unfortunate one, and one that i’ll never forget. The life changing event not only happened to my sister, but to our entire family. My sister was raped. I have since then dedicated my life and time to devote my knowledge to teens and parents educating them on how to handle situations like these and hopefully prevent these situations from happening in the future with the right education. I was indeed hurt, upset, scared, and a million other emotions including anger. The most prominent emotion was action. I wanted to take action and help others from going through the same feelings myself and my family had.

3. What you would have done differently back then if you could turn back time.

I don’t know if there is anything I could have done differently regarding this incident. As unfortunate as it is, it’s become my journey and passion to help educate others on this life lesson and learn from the past.

4. Do you convey this message to children in your life today?

I convey this message to each and every child or parent I can.

5. Anything else you`d like to add?

I would like to add that this experience has given me the right perspective to be able to speak knowledgeably about these topics. I think it’s great that more men speak out on these topics. Helping people is my passion, and i’m so lucky I can do this everyday.

– Mike Domitrz, Founder of The Date Safe Project

Debra Ruh – If I Knew Then What I Know Now

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Life Lessons From Adults To Children
Today’s Guest – Debra Ruh

That we all bring something to the table, we all have abilities and disabilities. I never understood how people treated people with disabilities as a “tragedy” until my husband and I had a daughter with Downs syndrome. A neighbor once came to my house after quite a few beers and told me she cried for me each night. I was surprised and asked her why? She said because my daughter was born with a disability. We do not see our daughters disability as a tragedy. We see it as a difference, she has some disabilities but quite a few abilities. I have tried to spend my life since my daughter was born (she is 25 now) spreading the word especially to children that it is okay to be different. I did not understand that as a kid and tried so hard to fit in with everyone. Not realizing that someday I would have a child that is different, she looks different, acts different and is different. Maybe that is okay and we have strengths in our difference. Maybe the world would be super boring if we were all the same.

If we could get this message to children at an early age – I think we would have less bullying and less stress to be like everyone else. It is time to embrace our differences we all have abilities and disabilities. It is okay to think and look different.

– Debra Ruh, Managing Director, Ruh Global