The following blog was written by our sponsored athlete, Brandon Ryan.

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I work in child advocacy, and often, I just have to surrender to the feelings of others around me.

What I mean by that is, I’ve always had the natural gift of bonding with kids of various ages, and that bonding allows me to get closer to some children than they have allowed others to.

I am able to make them smile when they are sad, or I hold an infant as they fall asleep and other comforting actions that these children NEED and DESIRE.

Growing up, my mother did home day care for almost 22 years. So, working around kids was something that came natural to me, or that God gifted me in this way.

But I wanted to do other things, such as traveling and teaching full time, but my life has not worked out that way. When graduating college, one of my favorite professors told me that, if I could ever get a job working at Project Harmony, that I should.

I was actually hired at Project Harmony after a brief interview and it has been a match made perfect for me and my gifts.

Being there for the past few months, I have met so many amazing young little ones and have enjoyed the smiles on their faces. They always leave so spoiled with toys, blankets and all the above.

When I describe my job to people, the general response is “that’s so sweet!” but little do they know that many of these children have seen and experienced a great darkness.

A darkness that I wish that I could take from them.

And as a very empathetic person, I tend to take and wear a lot of that pain and darkness with me.

And I get home some nights, the only thing that I want to do is drink a few beers and eat some chunk food, hoping to consume all the yucky feelings in unhealthy food.

It’s hard to stay consistent or even say no to crap foods when you have had a hard day, night or even a bad week at work. I’m sure that’s something we can all relate to.

If we are honest with ourselves, a lot of us don’t care about what we eat when we are frustrated, angry or saddened by what our daily work lives bring us.

Any discipline that we had or tried to have goes out the window.

Is it possible then, to stay consistent with clean eating when we feel shitty after work? Is it possible to settle for something besides Cheetos and wine, as one person told me, that they eat when they get home so late?

Not that I condemn this person’s actions, because I do the same.  But again, do we have to give into the feelings and feed ourselves horrible foods that will only make us feel worse about ourselves? No, we do not.

Here are a few tips that I have used to combat some of my own negative behaviors:

  • In yoga there is an exercise called alternate nostril breathing, what this entails is simply (and gently plugging one side of your nose, breathing in through the open nostril, plugging the nostril that is full of air and exhaling out the other. You can do this for as many rounds as possible. One thing that a former yoga teacher taught me, was that our breath is always there for us, and we must work on mastering it daily. When we forget our breath, things often go much worse than when we remember to be still and breath.

  • Drink more water! When you’re fully hydrated, it’s amazing how alert you are and how you are able to think with clarity and focus. Than when we overload on caffeine or sugar. Go juice is the best product on the market for hydration, plus it is packed with the extra advantage of B vitamins.

  • Eat more protein! Feeding your body protein, over most other processed foods is always the better option.

  • Take stock of your emotions and feelings, along alternate nostril breathing, I highly suggest journaling, making time to journal all that feeling truly helps. I know this can be difficult as well, but it helps.

  • Furthermore, regardless of your work, know in your heart that you are doing your vest best to make a difference. And that you can only do your part in the end, the world does not fully balance on your shoulders.     

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To get in contact with Brandon, email him!
Check out his NEW Kindle Book “Knowing Him”!