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Maggie DeMellier

Maggie DeMellier

Maggie DeMellier is a self-proclaimed reader, writer, runner and redhead. She worked as a surgical technician and pharmacy technician before she earned a BA in Mass Media Communication at The University of Akron. For ten years, she operated a freelance writing business, specializing in medical ads, news articles, features and business writing.  She was a teacher at a career college for six years, and earned a MA in Forensic Psychology in 2010. Maggie is the co-author of Parenting by Law or Grace, published by Synchronisity Press, in 2004.

Compulsive hoarding, holding on to possessions to the extent that it negatively affects every aspect of your life, is called Hoarding Disorder, and if this applies to you or someone you love, it’s time to get professional help.

In her blog post, A 61-Year-Old Woman Suffers from Compulsive Hoarding, Cluttering her House, Belleruth explained it this way: “If left untended, it can get quite extreme, with more and more of your life constricted and disabled by it. There is a biochemical and neurological aspect to this condition.

“Some people have so much accumulation, they will only have a narrow path from room to room, because canyons have been created by floor-to-ceiling stacks of newspapers and magazines. Stovetops, sofas and tables are buried. Fire and health hazards are created. And of course, your social life is constricted too - you’re too ashamed to have people over to the house. So are your kids.”

We, at Health Journeys, are always moved by the sincerity of the people who call us to ask whether we have anything that could help their loved ones, who are grieving. We are equally moved when we get calls from people seeking help for their own grief.

When this happens, I often reflect on Belleruth’s recent post, titled Do’s and Don’ts for the Bereaved and Their Well-meaning Friends. This subject is rarely covered. Her suggestions could help people make peace with their own sorrow, and minimize confusion for those of us seeking to console our grieving friends.

The Health Journeys staff members celebrated the implementation of the new HJ Player app last July, after fielding questions daily from iDevice users who were having problems navigating the old, multi-step process to sync the downloads they had purchased to their devices.  

Sometimes customers would get so frustrated they would simply give up and purchase our programs from iTunes, but not everything we carry is available there. 

We have a simple, easy solution for this!

Now, when you order one of our downloads, we’ll send you the link to our app – a free, top-of-the-line, Apple-style player, that lets you easily and quickly download our guided imagery.

The benefits of being kind and accepting of oneself have been studied and widely publicized. It seems we are encouraged on a daily basis to be compassionate to ourselves, but sometimes it's tough to figure out just what that means and how to do it.

What is the difference between self-compassion and self-esteem, we wonder, between self-compassion and self-indulgence? Fortunately, there are as many answers as there are questions, and many people, including Health Journeys' own Dr. Traci Stein, are providing resources to help us through the maze.

Somewhere amid the gifting, receiving and celebrating, it's nice to take a moment to savor the gifts the holiday season gives to us.



Tis' the season to be jolly, but that's tough to do when you are stressed out about over-crowded to-do lists, last-minute shopping and what to buy for those special people who have been so good to you this year.

If you choose to let your mouse do the work, and shop online, check out our handy Online Gift Guide for inspiration.

If you have questions, need help deciding what to order or prefer to place a phone order, call 1-800-800-8661 to speak to one of our resourceful staff members, who double as holiday elves this time of year. We are in the office between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. EST on week days (our office is closed Dec. 24 and 25).

"Shirley is a psychotherapist who specializes in self-esteem and anxiety related issues, and is an award-winning (2003 Milton H. Erickson Award for Scientific Excellence) expert at helping people examine their patterns and change their behavior, thanks to the removed, safe perspective of a light, hypnotic trance state."—Belleruth Naparstek

Creating Satisfying Relationships
By Dr. Shirley McNeal

I am a psychologist who has been in private practice for more than forty years. During this period of time I have spoken with many individuals, both men and women, who want to understand their relationship issues in order to increase the possibility of finding partners who will be the right match for them.

Much has been written about love at first sight and finding your heart's desire, and we know about the laws of attraction and what brings people together in the beginning. However, after the initial infatuation wanes, what enables the relationship to continue in a satisfying and healthy manner? What keeps love alive and allows relationships to last?

The great thing about giving yourself a gift is that you don't have to wait for a holiday to enjoy it. The really great thing about giving yourself a gift before the hectic holiday season is that an act of self-kindness can help access the creative, giving spirit in you and make it more fun to give gifts to others.

From a simple walk in the park to a mini-shopping trip just for you, there are many ways to reward yourself, and provide a well-deserved treat for body and soul. When you are feeling appreciated and rewarded, it's amazing how easily you can think of the perfect gift for someone, food to serve, outfit to wear and even find more time to savor the real meaning of the season.

Because you have been so good to us this year, Health Journeys is rewarding you by granting your requests for more aromatherapy products. Check out the aromatherapy goodies in our online store, just in time for holiday gift giving and self-giving.

The theme for National Family Caregivers Month is Respite: Care for Caregivers. It's a universal theme. Each of us has been a caregiver, needed a caregiver or loved someone who was a caregiver at some time in our lives.

When I think of family caregivers, what pops to mind is what I call the oxygen mask speech. Before taking off for a flight on a commercial airplane, passengers are given instructions by a flight attendant who tells them that if the air pressure in the cabin changes for any reason, an oxygen mask will be released to each person.

Passengers who are flying with small children or people who would need assistance in putting on the masks are told that it's important for them to put on their own masks before assisting the other person.

Because the pancreas is the organ responsible for insulin production, the best way to be kind to your pancreas is to follow the recommendations for treating or preventing diabetes.

During American Diabetes Awareness Month, we are urged to eat right, move more, sit less and above all—be aware of how our daily choices directly and indirectly affect our over-all health, whether we have diabetes, care for someone who has diabetes or simply wish to prevent it.

To stay abreast of the most recent information about diabetes, read the American Diabetes Association's 2015 Fact Sheet.