Saturday, December 19, 2020

LIFE: High Protein Deviled Eggs

 Who likes deviled eggs? ooh me! I do, I do! Let's face it, there are many versions of the deviled egg recipe that can be made. Currently, I have 3 different versions of the deviled egg recipe. The request was given to me to share one. I believe they are called deviled eggs because they are so darn delicious. How healthy they are depends on you and you ingredient choices! Anything that taste this delicious must be dangerous. For the purpose of this blog we are going to make high protein deviled eggs. So let's get started!

We will start with a list of ingredients and supplies that will be needed. They are as follows:

  • 12 whole large eggs
  • 1 cup of ranch salad dressing
  • 1 cup of whole sour cream
  • 1 tablespoon of cilantro
  • 1 tablespoon of cumin
  • Paprika (sprinkle and optional)
  • 1 cup of bacon bits (turkey or pork)
  • 1 tablespoon of Mrs. Dash (garlic and herb no salt seasoning)
  • 1 cup of  crumbled feta cheese
  • 2 tablespoons of sea salt
  • Supplies needed: A large mixing bowl, a hand mixer, a large pot, a large strainer, 1 mixing spoon, and a large serving tray of your choice.
Now that we have our ingredients and supplies, lets begin the process:
  1. First, fill the large pot half way with water. Add 2 tablespoons of sea salt and allow the water to come to a boil. Place the 12 whole eggs in the boiling water. Safety first, be careful when placing whole eggs in pot. Boil the eggs for 20 minutes. This will ensure the eggs are cooked thoroughly. 
  2. Second, place the large strainer in the sink. Drain the water from the eggs by pouring the hot pot with the completed boiled eggs in a strainer. Place cool water back in the large pot and place the strained eggs in the cool water. Allow the 12 eggs to sit for 10 minutes before attempting to de-shell. Safety first, please use oven mitts during this process and do not hold face over pot while pouring. Steam will be hot!
  3. After 10 minutes of cooling, remove the shells from each eggs. Tap each egg on the side of the pot to crack the shell and remove. This process should be easy because the sea salt was used during the eggs boiling process. Cut the cooled boiled eggs in half and place the boiled yokes in the large mixing bowl. This process will yield 24 egg white cups once complete. Leave the egg white cups in the water to cool completely.
  4. Next, you should have 12 boiled yokes in the large mixing bowl. Add 1 cup of ranch salad dressing, and 1cup of sour cream. Use hand mixer to mix these ingredients. Once mixed add 1 tablespoon of cilantro, 1 tablespoon of  cumin, 1 tablespoon of Mrs. Dash garlic and herb blend, and 1 cup of feta cheese. Complete the mixing process with the mixing spoon. Using the mixing spoon during this stage keeps the crumbled feta cheese a little chunky in the mix.
  5. At this point you may use the mixing spoon to add 1 cup of bacon bits to the mix, or leave them for later. I choose to leave them out for the non pork and non meat eaters. In doing this, splitting the egg preferences at the end of the process is easier.
  6. Now, place all egg white cups on the large serving tray. You should have a total of 24. Fill each egg white cup with the prepared bowl mixture content. It should take roughly 1 tablespoon to fill each cup. Your mixture should be thick. If you have any mixture left you may top of each egg white cup with the remainder. Make sure to spread out any remaining mixture evenly.
  7. Lastly, split the eggs with the prepared mixture inside into 2 twelves. If you did not add the bacon bits in the mixture during the hand mixing process, now you may sprinkle bacon bits on the first 12 eggs. Then sprinkle a little cilantro and paprika on all the eggs. These last few step are optional. Chill in the refrigerator and serve when ready.
Voila! Are you ready to be the hit of the party? A disclaimer I am going to make about the recipe is the ingredients are an estimate. Please modify to taste! Also, any crumbled cheese can be substituted to your liking (feta, Gouda, blue cheese, goat cheese and etc.). The cheese gives the deviled eggs a little zest and added protein. So what zest do you want? Trust me, these deviled eggs will fly off the dish. No matter what version you prepare, these eggs will disappear like magic. Enjoy and have fun with the process!

*It takes roughly 45 minutes to complete from prep to cook completion. These deviled eggs are totally worth the process. Please share your deviled egg recipe, subscribe via e-mail on the right, and leave a comment in the comment section below. As always, thanks for reading and subscribing!*

Saturday, December 12, 2020

BUTTERFLIES: Emotional Transparency and Vulnerability

How emotionally transparent are you? Do you tap into your vulnerable side? Some people are very good at being emotionally transparent and vulnerable. What you see is what you get! Comfort-ability to be emotionally transparent and vulnerable comes from a variety of factors such as: culture, environment, and life experiences. In many cultures emotional vulnerability and having transparency is seen as weak. These two words have a negative connotation. Although many cultures have this belief, both are needed for growth. So, how do you find a common ground between being transparent and vulnerable? How do you stay comfortable in your skin during the process?

For me, the last several years have been about being more emotionally transparent and vulnerable. These two areas have been my focus for growth. The stoic base which was instilled in me has been challenged by many life experiences that were out of my control.  We can not control Now, this is not to say that going through these life experiences had a negative outcome. The true plum fact is, while experiencing emotional vulnerability and transparency, you can become quite uncomfortable. But I would never change the end result. For me, repetition of the process made my emotional transparency and vulnerability phase a little easier. The result, was a better me! But, how can you go through the process of emotional vulnerability and transparency, and still be in one piece while trying to better yourself? Here are 7 steps to help you through the transition process. They are as follows:

  1. Recognize- Recognize the emotion you are feeling in the growth process? Do not react immediately and give yourself time to explore the emotion. How does it make you feel? Once you label the feeling do not judge yourself for having an emotion.
  2. UnderstandTry to understand the emotion. Why do you feel this way? What triggered the emotion? Is it a feeling you have experienced before? If familiar, how did you respond before and did it help your growth? If not, you may need to figure out a different response. Remember, every response does not promote growth and healing!
  3. Manage- There are a few questions you should ask yourself when going through an emotional process. Do you feel you need to address the situation or did the feeling pass?  I know we hate to ask out selves this one- but is it possible that you over reacted to the situation? We all have done this every once and a while..Lol! What have you learned? If the situation arises again, will you feel the same level of vulnerability? 
  4. Allow Room for Mistakes- Growth in dealing with emotional transparency and vulnerability takes time and practice to learn. Allow yourself room for mistakes within the process. Being hard on yourself will cause more stress and anxiety. You may be less likely to complete the process and hinder your growth. 
  5. Build an Environment of Trust- In order for others to feel comfortable to be emotionally transparent and vulnerable, an environment of trust must be built. Weather it is a romantic relationship, a circle of friends, and/or a work circle; everyone has to be comfortable within the circle in order to share their feelings open and honestly. Allowing this level of comfort-ability, everyone's true wishes can be known and the people involved can adjust accordingly.
  6. Be Present- Make time to connect with your spouse, circle, family, and/or employees on a regular basis. Making one-on-one time with others in your space decreases the frequent need of the emotional transparency and vulnerability  need. 
  7. Listen More Than You Speak- When a negative emotion is triggered, and the emotional transparency and vulnerability cycle is in process, be a good listener. Sometimes people need to vent and release all of their emotions. You may be the first person this individual was able to release their feelings to. Everyone who release emotions does not need their problem solved. Ask if your assistance is needed, or do they just need a listening ear? This establishes you as a trusted resource and someone they can depend on during the emotional transparency and vulnerability process.
As you have read, the emotional transparency and vulnerability process is a complex one. There are many ways to complete this process. But above is an established guideline to use. Having a guideline may make completing the process a little easier. The end result is growth and a better you! There is nothing wrong with that­čśŐ!

As you may realize the steps above are not all-inclusive. The 7 steps are highlights of how to get through the emotional transparency and vulnerability process. Steps provided by, ( 2020. Managing Emotions and Emotion Vulnerability. Podcast#21). How emotionally transparent are you? Do you tap into your vulnerable side? Please subscribe via e-mail on the right, and leave a comment in the comment section below (Now, an anonymous comment option available for your privacy!). As always, thanks for reading and subscribing­čśŐ!*

Saturday, December 5, 2020

BUTTERFLIES: Leaders and Leadership

What is your definition of a leader? What qualities do you need to see in a leader to feel you can be a productive follower? Leaders and and the topic of leadership has been a recurrent topic in my timeline this week. So we are going to address these two areas throughout the blog. For the purpose of this blog we are going to discuss the difference between being a leader and being in a leadership role. Merriam-Webster's dictionary defines a leader as "a powerful person who controls or influences what other people do. A person who leads a group, organization, country and etc". I believe sometimes the terms are used interchangeably. This is not correct! Merriam-Webster's dictionary defines leadership "as the office or position of a leader, the capacity to lead, and the act or instance of leading". Now that we have the definition correct, lets dive deeper into the two areas. 

I want to start with the word leadership. The reason I am starting with this word first is, it is  misinterpreted the most. Being in a leadership role does not make you a leader. But sometimes a leadership platform is needed in order for a leader to be productive and lead. Many times people are placed in a leadership role before they are ready to be a leader. They are not provided the tools to 
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develop and maintain leadership qualities. If leadership qualities can not be maintained and developed, you can not continue to be an effective leader. 

Earlier in my healthcare career I found myself in this position. I was placed in a leadership role without resources. To make matter worse, I was working in an area I concentrated on in undergraduate school. For me, the experience and tools I required were not there, and I felt locked in the position. I quickly realized this position was not for me, and changed my path. Sometimes leadership growth occurs in knowing what is not the correct leadership position for you. One thing to remember, the position was not a good fit for me, but may be a perfect fit for another leader.

The other side of the coin to remember, if everyone was built to be a leader, then there would not be anyone to follow. During my early nursing career, it was still my time to be a follower. The experience I had early on in my healthcare career made me realize everyone has a role to play in the leader-follower dynamic. But that is for another blog­čśë! But remember followers can be groomed to be in a leadership role. Here are 5 ways to know you may be ready for a leadership role. They are: 
  1. You like helping your coworkers problem-solve.
  2. You see the potential in others, and get satisfaction in seeing them flourish.
  3. You enjoy process improvement and feel you have ways to save the company time and money. 
  4. Many people assume you are in a leadership role due to your knowledge base and the instinct to share what you know with others. 
  5. You are willing to learn while you are in a leadership role. Reflect on your own actions and be willing to be an example of the qualities you are trying to enforce. 
The leadership role can be very appealing to others who are not currently in the position. The time and energy that it takes to be effective in this area is never projected by a good leader. But there are a few signs you may not be ready for a leadership role. I will like to state, not being ready for a leadership role does not mean you will never be a leader or in a leadership position in the future. Experience, time, and continuous education needs to be present for a leader to continue to share with their followers. Here are some signs that you may not be ready to lead. They are as follows: 
  1. You want the role solely for monetary reasons. 
  2. You want the job because there is an illusion your work load will be easier. 
  3. You have a hard time speaking up on something that would benefit the company. 
  4. You are not willing to open up and be trusting with employees on your team. 
  5. You care more about the job title, private office, or other perks more than the job itself. 
Now, we know some of the ideas that mean you are not ready for a leadership position. Again, this does not mean you will not be ready to be a leader in the future. So, what are qualities of a good leader? Weather your leader is in church or in The White House, there are certain qualities they posses which makes you feel they are GREAT at what they do. These qualities allow them to be effective in their post and with their followers: 5 qualities of a GREAT leader are:
  1. Great communication skills
  2. The ability to delegate task
  3. Empathy
  4. Self-Care
  5. Gratitude
Remember, there is not one way or style to lead. The leadership style which works for one leader, may not particularly work for another. How you decide to lead depends on your surroundings, and your followers. Also, this thought process can apply to a leader's qualities. As you grow and change, on thing to remember is you take the best of other leaders and make it your own. The rest is history! 

As you may realize these list are not all-inclusive. The lists are highlights of qualities and  characteristics GREAT leaders needs to possess in order to lead.What is your definition of a leader? What qualities do you need leadership to possess for you to be a productive follower? Please subscribe via e-mail on the right, and leave a comment in the comment section below (Now, an anonymous comment option available for your privacy!). As always, thanks for reading and subscribing­čśŐ!*