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In Element 04, we examined your relationship with yourself and prepared you to make challenging decisions using Stop. Challenge. Choose. Now that you are taking full responsibility for your health, it’s important to understand the dynamics of relationships and interactions with others as they play an important role in your wellbeing.

Here are some tips for optimizing your surroundings and improving your relationships:

  • Take the high road. Your decision to respond in a rational way to someone’s behavior goes a long way in improving daily interactions. Use Stop. Challenge. Choose, count to ten, or think about how your response can affect your health before responding.
  • Avoid traps. Be mindful of friends and family members that have good intentions, but put you in a position that is not supportive of your health journey. For example, if your aunt makes her famous apple pie, it’s important for you to be prepared to explain why you are choosing not to eat pie. Those who are supportive of your health journey will understand, so surround yourself with them!
  • Utilize your support system. In addition to building and improving connections, your support system can help you handle difficult situations, find resources, and motivate you to succeed. Reach out to loved ones, your OPTAVIA Coach, and the OPTAVIA Community for support and advice on your journey to optimal health and wellbeing.

Ask me, your OPTAVIA Coach, about other ways to optimize your surroundings on your journey to Lifelong Transformation, One Healthy Habit at a Time® and stay tuned for one of our upcoming newsletters featuring Element 06 of Your LifeBook in the new Habits of Health Transformational System—your path to a healthy weight.

Still need to order your NEW Habits of Health® Transformational System? Let’s connect today!

Join this week’s Habits of Health® Community Time, Your LifeBook - Element 05, on Wednesday, March 4th at 8:30 p.m. ET/7:30 p.m. CT/5:30 p.m. PT, hosted by Independent OPTAVIA Coach Shirley Mast.

Please click the link below to join the webinar:

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Self-awareness is the foundation of personal growth. Building self-awareness leads to greater understanding of the interactions that you have with others. It allows you to create and maintain the life that you want.

There are two categories of self-awareness: internal and external. Internal self-awareness is the conscious knowledge of your own character, feelings, motives, and desires. External self-awareness means that we are aware of how other people see us. True self-awareness encompasses both and allows you to make intuitive decisions without a second thought. Here are some simple ways to build self-awareness:

  • Test yourself.  Personality tests (like Enneagram) psychometrics, and strength assessments are a great way to start building self-awareness. It shows dominate patterns and behaviors whether they are good or bad. Some assessments also offer suggestion on how to improve yourself.
  • Reflect. A part of self-awareness is self-reflection, which is the ability to look at yourself and your actions in an unbiased way. Questioning your actions during and after situations without judgement builds emotional intelligence. Journaling can also be a form of reflection. Writing down your thoughts and or feelings and going back to them can help you understand yourself better. Dive into Your LifeBook today to start reflecting.
  • Ask others.  Ask people that you trust about yourself. What words would they use to describe you? What do they think are your strengths and weaknesses? Do they notice certain tendencies or triggers for you? Asking other people about yourself builds the whole picture of who you are allows you to recognize and take responsibility for your actions.

Ask me, your OPTAVIA Coach, about other ways to build self-awareness during your journey to Lifelong Transformation, One Healthy Habit at a Time®.

Per Serving: 1 Lean | 3 Green | 3 Condiments 

Yield: 4 servings

Total Time: 30 minutes


4, 6-oz. raw skinless salmon fillets

¼ tsp salt

1½ tbsp curry powder

1¼ lbs. Napa cabbage, trimmed and chopped into bite-sized pieces

2 tsp minced fresh ginger root

1 cup chicken broth

¼ tsp red pepper flakes

2 green onions, minced


  1. Gently rub the salt over the salmon until dissolved. Allow salmon to sit for about 5 minutes.
  2. Spread the curry powder on a plate and roll each salmon fillet in the curry powder until evenly coated.
  3. Place salmon on a baking sheet, and bake in oven at 425⁰F for about 8 to 10 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, cut the Napa cabbage into bite-sized pieces and set aside.
  5. In a skillet, combine the chicken broth and ginger; bring to a boil. Add the cabbage and red pepper flakes; cover and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for about 3 to 5 minutes, or until cabbage is tender.
  6. Stir the green onions in with the cabbage. Serve salmon on a bed of cabbage.

Per Serving: 400 calories | 38g protein | 7g carbohydrate | 24g fat

Visit our OPTAVIA Pinterest page for an extensive assortment library of Lean & Green meals.


“I was obese, weighing in at 333 pounds with a BMI of 50.6 and a waist measuring 59 inches. My journey towards optimal health began as part of a ripple effect. My best friend had a friend who had an amazing transformation and had become an OPTAVIA Coach. She asked me if I'd like try the Plan with her and if we could be each other's support system.”

After watching her friend lose 30 pounds*, Colleen decided to give OPTAVIA a try and she never looked back.

“I ripped the bandage of fear off and told myself this was my time! I can honestly say it was one of the best decisions of my life. Each day I ate my five Fuelings every 2-3 hours, prepared a lean and green meal, and only drank water. My clothing became baggy, my body shrunk and I could move more. Never in my wildest dreams did I think I could lose 100 pounds*.”

After one year of being on Plan, Colleen was thrilled when she stepped on the scale and saw the number “1” as the first digit.

“I had made it to “Onederland”! The goal of a healthy BMI was in sight. I had to keep going.”

Soon after, Colleen had lost an additional 60 pounds* and was half of her original weight. She took her first plane ride since she began her journey and was in awe of how much room the seat had and how the seatbelt fit her comfortably. She no longer hid in photos and began enjoying shopping for clothes in her new size.

“I decided to celebrate reaching a healthy weight by running a half marathon. The girl that used to get doctors notes to get out of gym class was going to run 13.1 miles. Just like my weight journey, it was challenging but rewarding.”

As Colleen entered the final stretch, her legs began to burn. She turned around and saw another woman like her, exhausted and determined to cross the finish line.

“I thought about my health journey and how if I hadn't locked arms with so many people, I wouldn't be where I was today. I held out my hand and looked a total stranger in the eye and said ‘let's cross this line together’ and we did. That moment was like the day I reached my goal, unforgettable.”

Collen has been maintaining her healthy weight for over a year. There are still struggles, but she has her support group to inspire her and healthy habits to keep her going.

“I enjoy racing my nieces down the giant slide at the amusement parks, I continue to run, and I found love. There will never be enough gratitude for what this Program, Dr. Andersen, my best friend, my OPTAVIA Coach, and the OPTAVIA Community have done to inspire me. As an OPTAVIA Coach, I’m now paying it forward and encouraging others to find health and happiness.”

*Average weight loss on the Optimal Weight 5 & 1 Plan® is 12 pounds. Clients are in weight loss, on average, for 12 weeks.


Kathy Glazer
3 Washington Circle N. W. #303, Washington,D.C. 20037, Also Falls Church,VA

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