January 2024 newsletter

Let’s talk about resolutions, change, daily exercises, gratitude, and water.

Happy New Year to you.  Perhaps you might take a look at any milestones that occurred in 2023 before you look at ’24.  I’ve been married to the same woman for 40 years (amazing), I turned 70 years old (really?), my fifth grandchild was born (and will have special needs), and some precious people passed away.  I think that taking a moment to acknowledge our milestones helps us to anchor our perspective on what is important, and what is not.  You might reflect on the things that weren’t accomplished as well, and then decide whether they have new-found importance in this coming year, which brings to mind an important question; is it really important for you to make new year’s resolutions?

Last year my “word” for the year was focus, with five specific tasks I wanted to work on.  I did OK focusing, but not to my satisfaction, so I’m going to continue to work on my five focus points this year.  January 1st is simply a milestone that says I’ve been working on this improvement for one year.  What I really think is that if you truly want to improve yourself, you’ll start whenever you’re ready. Why wait until the new year, really?

When you really want to learn a new skill, or eliminate a bad habit, or change the way you think or anything else, you start doing it because it is important enough to start here and now, whenever that time is.  You will improve, and you may even succeed, when that goal becomes a habit, a part of your daily routine and incorporated into the rhythm of your life.  So, January is as good a time as any to start something new, but make sure it is important enough that you will be doing it next January, ’25, as well.  Blessings to all of you.  Dr. Ben

NOTICE:  I have raised my office fees for 2024.  Short office visits are now $40, regular office visits (30 min) are $70, hour-long visits are $130.  Short initial exams are $90 and full exams are $140.  Insurance copays will be adjusted by $5.00 or may remain the same.  Medicare copays will remain the same, but after the deductible has been met.

From Bill Esteb:

Change is often difficult because of the momentum created by our past. To overcome this powerful headwind, consider these five issues:

Beliefs – Our beliefs have been derived from our experiences. During the first couple of decades, we looked for patterns to explain this life we found ourselves experiencing.

Assumptions – Constant critical thinking is exhausting. Instead, we take a shortcut to reach a conclusion of what is so. Frequently they are incorrect.

Theories – In an attempt to make sense of our reality, we identify principles and establish models. Remember, the map is not the territory.

Habituations – As various rituals get repeated, they often become “locked in,” and more and more of our life becomes unconscious repetition.

Culture – Consider the influence of family, friends and professional acquaintances. “People like us, do things like this” keeps us between the rails.

Actioning new ideas and producing significant change come close to being a miracle.






You probably have heard it all, so I’m not going to repeat it all, but I want to pass on one helpful hint that may help you maintain a comfortable weight and help keep up your energy levels.  That one hint is drinking enough water.  The general rule is to drink .05 oz of water per pound of body weight, to be drunk throughout the day.  This can include tea, coffee and flavored waters, but not soda or drinks with sugar in them.  By quenching your thirst first, it reduces your urge to eat, when in fact you are simply thirsty.  This way, you keep up your energy levels, you don’t eat unnecessarily, and when you are finally hungry, you don’t feel like eating the whole cow.  Personally, I try to drink something in between each meal and snack, and honestly, I try to drink at least one cup of green tea per day, which also has healthy benefits.



“Be like a tree. Stay grounded. Connect with your roots. Turn over a new leaf. Bend before you break. Enjoy your unique natural beauty. Keep growing.”       Joanne Raptis

“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.”  Aristotle

“If we would have new knowledge, we must get us a whole world of new questions.”  Susanne Langer



It’s just about time for Grandpa to run for U.S. Senate



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