Paget speaks about stress at ARC


Calworks sponsored life coach and holistic nutritionist Barbie Paget began her three module series about nutrition at ARC on Nov. 23. (Photo courtesy of Barbie Paget)

Laurie Jones

Calworks sponsored life coach and holistic nutritionist, Barbie Paget, began her three-module series on stress reduction, emotional intelligence, and nutrition for busy people, Tuesday and Wednesday in Community Rooms one and two.

Paget said that stress affects everyone and can be positive or negative, internal or external.  

Paget’s work strives to get people to move from an instantaneous reaction, to a thoughtful response activated by conscious breathing and mindfulness.

Mindfulness is becoming aware of your actions.

“I wanted to work with regular people rather than executives because executives already have coaches that they can talk to,” Paget said.

She included a chart (see link), of stress symptoms in columns of physician, cognitive, behavioral, and emotional.

Paget said, “Ninety percent of doctors’ visits are stress related, yet doctors rarely discuss stress.”

She emphasized letting go a little more each day, pointing out not to be discouraged by any little slip.  

She suggested just keep persevering and eventually you will make progress. Paget cautioned, behavioral change takes time, sometimes one to two years, and can be cumulative depending on the number of stressors being dealt with simultaneously.

Paget said that we need to love ourselves and not be judgmental.

A catchy acronym Paget used is TACO – think, accept, choose and own.

One effective technique Paget mentioned is the Pomodoro method where you work 25 minutes, take five to 10 minutes off, repeat three times, then take a half hour break.

The sympathetic nervous system controls our urgent, emergency, immediate reactions of fight, flight, feed, and freeze and the more advanced parasympathetic system allows time for a more considered response to “rest and digest”. said Paget

Paget stated that more life satisfaction is gained if you take out the “if, then” mentality – “If I achieve this, then I will be happy.”  She said be happy now.

She encouraged students to get enough sleep and concentrate on gratitude, timely for Thanksgiving.

Paget ended by saying that students can “start the success snowball by reframing how you define success.”

Paget said “passion planners” are free online at