620 Old West Central Street, Franklin, MA 02038 • 508-528-6100 • www.ProPTinc.com
READING IS MUCH MORE THAN A HOBBY
It’s an Opportunity to Do Better
longer had the opportunity to read at all, I realized how much I missed it and how important it had actually been. When life got busy with raising a family and building my physical therapy practice, there just didn’t seem to be room for reading in any capacity anymore. You could say my hobby had instead become all about my family, which of course was a blissful substitution. But when the nest finally emptied, the hunger to learn and the desire to continue building my life into something meaningful sprang up with ferocity, and reaching for a book was my natural reaction in that moment. I now read dozens of books each year, juggling at least three or four at the same time. I call reading my “mind medication” because it’s become a form of meditation for me. It’s a way to unplug and unwind from the fast-paced excitement of the rest of my life. I’ve even deemed my car my “commuter university,” because it’s where I get the chance to listen to audiobooks. But more than a simple escape, my hobby of reading also presents limitless opportunity to be better. As a business owner, it’s important to me to always be learning. The more I work to improve my knowledge and self-growth, the more capable I am of being a better leader. I’m able to give back to my team, my patients, and my community in ways I likely would not have even fathomed if not for reading about it in the pages of a book. That’s why I love reading nonfiction books full of real-life stories of success, motivation, and tried- and-true practices. I’ve found that by working on myself, I act as a trigger for improvement around me. My simple hobby of reading has evolved into a sort of rising tide effect, lifting the boats scattered across the ocean of my life. The more I read, the more I can inspire and encourage those near and dear to me.
January has been dubbed National Hobby Month. While some might be wondering why we need to dedicate 31 days to partaking in our hobbies, I think this month presents a wonderful opportunity to not only indulge in them but also really reflect on how important they can be. My biggest hobby is reading. My husband and I rarely watch television; instead, we are content to crack open the fresh spine of the next book on our list (e-readers haven’t found a worthy position in our hobby as of yet) and silence the noise around us as the words of others take us far away. While my husband is preferential to fictional worlds, 95% of my own reading consists of nonfiction books about self-improvement, growth, leadership, and the best business tactics and practices. After years of reading endless clinical and medical journals as I navigated the process of getting my education and building my practice, I’ll admit I was just about ready to never read anything again. But when I no
I can’t say with confidence that I would still be leading the life I do today without my hobby of reading. I owe a lot to the immeasurable advice
and ideas I’ve gained from the authors who take the time to write about their own lives and the lessons they’ve learned. I call reading a hobby, but the truth is that it’s evolved into so much more than that.
– Dr. Stacey Raybuck Schatz
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Stay Active DuringYour GoldenYears 3 Part-Time Jobs for Retirees
want to be a coach. You might need to pass a background check, and you’ll probably need to know first aid as well. While the pay isn’t incredible, the time you’ll spend sharing your passion for sports with young people is more than worth it. GIVE BACK AS A PERSONAL CARE AIDE. If you’re looking for an opportunity to stay active and have a more direct impact on people’s lives, you can try being a personal care aide. Personal care aides help elderly and disabled people with everyday tasks, such as shopping, doing laundry, and bathing. Many people who require this assistance prefer older aides who can empathize with their struggles, so it’s a great job for recent retirees. Just because you’ve retired doesn’t mean you can no longer bring value to your community. With all the time you have on your hands, you could become one of your town’s most valuable assets.
Whether you want to generate some extra income during your retirement or just keep yourself busy, getting a part-time job can be a great way to spend your golden years. But why settle for just any opportunity when you could stay mentally and physically active and give back to the community? If that sounds like your ideal way to spend retirement, here are a few options to consider. PASS ALONG YOUR KNOWLEDGE AS A TEACHER. Many community colleges and community centers offer part-time teaching opportunities for those who want to share their field of expertise with others. Many of these positions don’t require a teaching degree or certificate — just a wealth of knowledge from your years in the workforce. Alternatively, if you want to help younger students with their academics, you could also work as a tutor or a teacher’s assistant at a local school. SHARE YOUR PASSION FOR SPORTS AS A COACH. Coaching can be a satisfying way to spend your retirement and support younger athletes. However, there are a few things to keep in mind if you
of the Month
SCOTT ERSKINE MASSACHUSETTS FALLEN HEROES GOLD STAR FAMILY PROGRAM
“When we lose a soldier, a gold star family loses a father, son, daughter, or mother. It’s our obligation to take care of them and carry the burden of their loss. At Massachusetts Fallen Heroes, their mission is to provide a layer of safety, love, and empathy for all families by creating an easy and nonjudgmental community. They create this bond through numerous activities and programs. They also provide countless opportunities for members to build new friendships and share experiences with other members of post
Scott sustained a severe injury to his arm this past July for which he needed surgery. After this procedure, he had a lot of limitations with range of motion, especially at his elbow, and he had significant restrictions with his scar. Scott worked diligently on his motion and on his scar, enduring the process with his dry sense of humor and a smile on his face. For his outstanding improvement and his often-seen smile, Scott was selected for patient of the month. Congratulations, Scott!
9/11 wars.” –Scott
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Welcome to a brand-new decade! Make 2020 the year you invest in yourself by investing in your health. Start the decade off right by addressing the issues you’ve ignored for too long. Do you have: • Nagging back pain? • Sore muscles, tendons, or joints? • An old sports injury that keeps you from being active? This year is your year. Make your vision for 2020 one of health and well-being by visiting Professional Physical Therapy. We’ll help you take care of the pain you’ve been putting off.
A new year means your HSA plans are renewing. But don’t delay getting care for fear of running through your deductible. We have treatment plans and options that can work for you, such as ... Laser therapy with the LightForce Class IV laser! Heal faster and get back to doing the things you love with this noninvasive and pain-free option. Call our office today and kick off your year feeling your best! Professional Physical Therapy 620 Old West Central Street Franklin, MA 02038 508-528-6100
Reading Is an Exercise in Healthy Living
muscle. This means if you “exercise” regularly through reading, you can literally increase your brainpower. You can even train your brain to get a better night’s sleep by winding down through reading before bed. Just make sure it’s a paper book and not an e-reading device, because screen light can trigger your brain into staying awake. PICK-ME-UP In the case of those with depression or low self-esteem, reading leads to a more positive outlook and more inspiration to achieve things that make them feel more fulfilled. Overall, researchers have discovered that when people read about other people or characters doing things in books, they’re more likely to be inspired to try the same activity in real life. Identifying with characters in a book also helps the reader learn how to build real-life relationships, allowing them to identify and empathize with a wider range of people.
I love reading because it’s done so much for me, but you don’t have to take my word for it! Research has shown that reading actually leads to a healthier, happier brain, which translates directly into everyday life. BRAIN TRAINING Your brain is the control center for your body, so when it’s running smoothly, your body functions better. Reading brings existing neural pathways to life and also helps create new bridges across synapses. This is because when you read a book, you need to remember a lot of details, like names, locations, ideas, and plots. Every time you encounter one of these new elements while reading, your brain is actually creating a new memory and strengthening existing ones. As more synapses are utilized, your mental aptitude and health improves. HEALTHY HABITS Research has shown that reading can reduce stress in individuals by up to 68%. Less stress allows your entire body to function more efficiently. The brain has the ability to retain information and recall it like an exercised
I’ve said it more than once, but I’ll say it again: Reading is a truly wonderful thing!
“I had difficulty walking without pain and bending my knee. The staff provided exercises to strengthen my muscles and balance. Through the process, my balance improved and the exercises made me able to walk and do my job without pain. I have regained mobility and have returned to my normal activities.”
A traditional New Year’s favorite in the South, Hoppin’ John includes black- eyed peas that are said to represent coins, a sign of prosperity for the coming year. It’s usually served alongside collard greens, which represent cash.
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1 smoked ham hock 1 medium onion, diced 1 cup long-grain white rice
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1 cup dried black-eyed peas
5–6 cups water
1 dried hot pepper, optional (arbol and Calabrian are great options)
“ I had major rotator cuff/ bicep surgery. When I first came to PT, I needed help getting my arm in and out of my sling. Now, I can do everything I could do prior to the injury. Dr. Patt, Crystal, Sue, Amber, Tracy, Julia, Sarah, Nadine, and Anthony all helped in my healing process. I couldn’t have done this without their help.”
Directions 1. Wash and sort peas.
2. In a saucepan, cover peas with water, discarding any that float. 3. Add pepper, ham hock, and onion. Gently boil and cook uncovered, stirring occasionally, until peas are just tender, about 90 minutes. At this point, you should have about 2 cups of liquid remaining. 4. Add rice, cover, drop heat to low, and simmer for 20 minutes, undisturbed. 5. Remove from heat and let steam for an additional 10 minutes, still covered. 6. Remove lid, fluff with a fork, and serve.
Inspired by Epicurious
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INSIDE THIS ISSUE
How Reading Shapes My Life Stay Active During Your Golden Years
Patient of the Month How Reading Is Fuel for Your Brain Hoppin’ John Meet the World’s First Airport Therapy Pig
Imagine you’re navigating a vast airport on a busy Saturday, shouldering your way through crowds and struggling to hear the PA system over the clatter of 1,000 wheeled suitcases. Suddenly, you see a pig wearing a hot pink sweater waddling toward you on a leash. Do you stop in your tracks? Does your stress level drop? Do you laugh out loud when you see its pink nail polish? If you answered “yes” to any of the above, then you can sympathize with the passengers, pilots, flight attendants, and staff at the San Francisco International Airport. They get to enjoy visits from Lilou, the world’s first airport therapy pig, on a regular basis! As part of the Wag Brigade, the airport’s cadre of (mostly canine) therapy animals, Lilou wanders the airport with her humans, bringing joy, peace, and calm to everyone she meets. Lilou may be the only pig of her kind, but airport therapy animals have been a growing trend for the last few years. According to NPR, as of 2017, more than 30 airports across the U.S. employed therapy dogs, and these How Lilou and Animals Like Her Calm Stressed-Out Travelers MEET THE WORLD’S FIRST AIRPORT THERAPY PIG
days, estimates land closer to 60. The San Jose and Denver airports have therapy cats, and the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport even offers passengers the chance to play with miniature horses before boarding their flights. Therapy dogs started appearing in U.S. airports after the 9/1 1 terror attacks, which changed American attitudes about flying. They did so well at helping passengers calm down that airports began implementing permanent programs. Some have pets on hand 2 4/7 to assist passengers, while others host animal visits every few weeks or months. These days, regular travelers have fallen hard for their local therapy animals, many of whom even have their own Instagram accounts and hashtags. So, the next time you’re traveling, keep an eye out for a friendly pup, cat, pig, or horse to pet. A bit of love from an animal just might improve your trip!
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