Everyone Wants To Be Happy & Everyone Should Be Able To Navigate Through A Crisis!


As Chicagoland, and much of the world, approaches phase 4 of re-entry to society after months of Shelter In Place, many are wondering how to navigate through the uncertainty of what’s next with COVID-19. That which is certain is we all want to be happy, and we all desire the ability to work through an overwhelming life shift. The great news is – IT’S POSSIBLE!

Let us dive into seeking a solution by firstly considering one famous Greek philosopher; Heraclitus. His philosophy is a good starting point for anyone concerned with change in life.

Life is like a river. The peaks and troughs, pits and swirls, are all are part of the ride.


If you do as Heraclitus would – go with the flow. Enjoy the ride, as wild as it may be.

Secondly, flow with change by applying helpful principles. Interested? Read on about how two modern day Greeks researched 7 key principles to help us navigate change and be happy in the interim.

Dr. Elia Gouragouris and Konstantinos Apostolopoulos recently co-authored the book 7 Keys To Navigating A Crisis to offer proven steps a person can take to cope and maintain a positive mindset during a pandemic and other disasters. The timing is perfect for the release of this book, which is a quick and easy read.

Not only will individuals and families find the book helpful in a crisis, so will first responders, healthcare professionals, mental health counselors and wellness coaches. Each chapter has an end section including points to under, questions to consider, and action steps to take, so the reader can move beyond just surviving to thriving in a crisis situation.

Dr. Gourgouris

Here are the 7 keys covered in the book:

  • SELF CARE- the ability to become aware of our physical, mental, emotional and spiritual needs, in order to thrive during a crisis.
  • PRACTICING AWARENESS, self reflection and listening to our intuition or inner wisdom gives us advance notice of what’s around the corner. Sometimes that information can be a matter of life or death.
  • CHOOSING FLEXIBILITY allows us to adapt, pivot when needed, and avoid unnecessary pain.
  • PREPARATION is our key to survival. The time to act is now, and preparation is no longer the exclusive domain for a fringe movement of doomsayers but a necessity for all of us.
  • TAKE INITIATIVE by moving into action. Our response will be determined by the extent of the disaster. Let us not be victims, but instead navigate our own journey.
  • POSITIVE ATTITUDE, filled with faith, and hope helps us overcome any situation and any obstacle we face. More importantly, it helps elevate those around us looking for leadership.
  • OUR HUMANITY will be measured by the level and frequency of the kindness we show to others. One of the greatest blessings to come out of the pandemic has been the countless acts of sacrifice, service and love shown by thousands of ordinary folks doing extraordinary acts of kindness around the world.

Watch “Elia Gourgouris, PhD – The Happiness Doctor” 

One thing is for sure, life is ever changing, and it is up to each of us to positively navigate through COVID-19 and future uncertainties. Help yourself by preparing to be ready for any change that will come your way!

It’s quite possible that 7 Keys To Navigating A Crisis can shift you into a new direction. Order your copy from Amazon today!

Ola Kala,


Self Care


Although today’s post is prompted by the cautionary and vigilant actions taken worldwide to protect immunity against the Corona Virus COVID-19, the necessitate to safeguard mind, body and soul has been embedded into my person since childhood. Part of this “Ola Kala” mindset is certainly attributed to my Greek ancestors, but even so, I was raised in a modern day household that emphasized proper rest, nutrition, movement and faith. These health-giving tenants are also part of the 12 month curriculum taught at the school of Integrative Nutrition, where I graduated last September. Since I would prefer to write this blog in under one year, let’s get right to the to the point by asking the following:

What does self care look like to you?

Do you care for yourself emotionally, physically and mentally?

How can you care for you?

Seeing that we are Bio-Individuals, the self care routine looks different on every body. Therefore, its helpful for you to honestly answer these questions in relation to your bio-individual self.

Below is a list of my essential self care routine.

KEFI L!FE ESSENTIAL ONE: Let go of the notion that you are being selfish when you routinely look after yourself.

If you are weak and not feeling well, how on earth can you be of service to others and to self ? Creating a routine which will support your wellness and maintain a healthy immune system will benefit you and your community. Each day when you take a little bit of time to feed yourself with goodness, you strengthen your being.

KEFI L!FE ESSENTIAL TWO: Get plenty of sleep. Restful sleep keeps me healthy, happy & energized.

A rejuvenating nap in Ikaria, Greece nets exhilerating energy for the remainder of the day.

More importantly, the doctors of Mayo Clinic report that during sleep, your immune system releases proteins called cytokines, some of which help promote sleep. … So, your body needs sleep to fight infectious diseases. Long-term lack of sleep also increases your risk of obesity, diabetes, and heart and blood vessel (cardiovascular) disease.

KEFI L!FE ESSENTIAL THREE: Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.

Fuel your body with foods that nourish, energize and taste good. The food we eat has a direct result on how we feel physically and emotionally.

One nurse at Speaking of Woman’s Health shares that, besides tasting great and nourishing the body, food also has an influence on appetite and moods. Research shows that certain foods affect powerful mood-modifying brain chemicals called neurotransmitters. These neurotransmitters are made from the foods we eat, and are present in higher concentrations after meals than between them.

Fabulous salad with 3 different lettuce, Haloumi cheese, dill and breadsticks.

Of the many neurotransmitters present in our bodies, only a few affect appetite:

  1. Serotonin: a chemical released after eating carbohydrates (sugars and starches). It enhances calmness, improves mood and lessens depression. Serotonin is made from the amino acid tryptophan. High levels of serotonin control appetite and satisfy cravings.
  2. Dopamine and norepinephrine: chemicals released after eating protein (meats, poultry, dairy, legumes). They enhance mental concentration and alertness. These neurotransmitters come from the amino acid tyrosine. Learn more at Speaking of Woman’s Health.com

KEFI L!FE ESSENTIAL FOUR: Move it or lose it.

Your body will begin to deteriorate if you do not move and allow for blood flow and oxygen to circulate. Ever notice how much better you feel after an outdoor walk? Did you ever pay attention to your body mechanics and energy after keeping consistent with physical activity for 3 months?

Doing stairs in beautiful scenery makes movement fun!

More from Mayo: Movement is a fundamental aspect of life. Movement is greater than just ‘exercise’ and does not necessarily require effort, though it does require action. Movement affects everything, from circulation to digestion to metabolism to immunity. With movement, our bodies regulate hormone activity, detoxify and respire.

Moving can be as simple as gardening or walking the dog or as challenging as training for an Ironman. Make movement enjoyable to you.


Daily prayer is the radio signal to God. Prayer allows you to reflect and hear a voice that guides your path to the truth & healing.

Being an avid reader on the topic of faith, I highly recommend the book titled Beginning To Pray by Metropolitan Anthony Bloom. You will be inspired by his worldly experiences, his education and his thoughts on prayer life.

KEFI L!FE ESSENTIALS SIX: “Παν μέτρον άριστον “Pan metron ariston”: Everything in moderation”

Ancient Greeks strongly believed that you should live your life choosing the mean and avoid the extremes on either side, as much as possible. Too much of anything is not a good thing. Because having both qualities produces harmony; goodness and beauty.

And now to the Corona virus... Take the time to balance all areas of your life and put into practice the suggestions of Dr. Frank Lipman, one of my favorite doctors who taught at the school of Integrative Nutrition.


I believe when you begin to care for yourself, everything will turn out Ola Kala!