Fourth of July Makeover: 5 Ways to Let Freedom Ring

Energy Express


July 2021 Issue
Energy Express   by Marilynn Preston

I love the Fourth of July. Fat, juicy hot dogs, exploding firecrackers,
fried Oreo sandwiches with big scoops of strawberry ice cream on top.
These are a few of the things I avoid on this, our most John Philip Sousa of holidays.

So, what are your plans for July Fourth? Since this only-in-America holiday is first and
foremost a celebration of freedom, why not liberate yourself from old ways of
thinking and create some new traditions. I’ve got some ideas:

1. FREE TO BE, WITH FRIENDS AND FAMILY. Round up the troops and plan an active day of communal fun. The idea is to free yourself from technology and join other humans who share your interest in cold beer.

Organize a softball game, set up a badminton net, try your hand at a three-legged relay race, and if you’re too young to know what that is, ask the Google.

It’s true that one day of playing horseshoes or bocce ball won’t cure loneliness, but when it comes to personal well-being, it’s always one day at a time. Today, you walk a half-mile. Tomorrow, you play tennis or swim. The day after that, you start a meditation practice that helps free you from fear and accelerates self-kindness... and that really can change your life.

2. FIGHT THE GOOD FIGHT. Independence Day recognizes the brave men and women who fought hard for our country. Can their courage inspire you to declare your own independence from, say, sugary sodas and processed fake foods?

This Fourth of July, soldier your strength and declare war on toxic foods that don’t serve your well-being. Make it a day for eating real food.

Join the revolution and free yourself from food-like products containing additives and chemicals you can’t pronounce, which muck up your metabolism and layer on the fat.

3. PLAY THE SUBSTITUTION GAME. How many fruits can you pack into your July Fourth picnic? Watermelon instead of cupcakes, juicy peaches in place of pecan pie. The patriotic thing to do this Fourth of July is to lighten the load of calories and substitute yummy fruit desserts for the kind that leave you bloated and stuffed.

Do it for your health. Do it for your loved ones. Do it for your country, because obesity is pounding away at our entire health system, and the sooner you get a handle on your intake of sugar, the sweeter your life will be.

4. GIVE UNTO OTHERS. There are lots of charity events and fun runs during the Fourth of July weekend. What do you want to fight for? An end to Alzheimer’s? Breast cancer? Diabetes? Exercise your kindness and gratitude, and support a cause that is meaningful to you. It doesn’t matter if you win or place. It just matters that you show up, because doing good will make you feel good.

5. DO THE PRACTICE. One wonderful way to fight stress is to join forces with the calming nature of sitting still. On July Fourth, set aside 10 minutes or more to sit comfortably, listen to your breath and reflect on all the blessings of your life. You are free to become the person you want to be. That is, after all, the revolution this country celebrates.

What one thing can you do, starting this July Fourth, that will make you healthier and happier the next time the parade comes to town?

“Freedom is nothing but a chance to do better.”
— Albert Camus —

Marilynn Preston is the author of “Energy Express,” America’s longest-running healthy lifestyle column. Her Amazon best-seller “All Is Well: The Art {and Science} of Personal Well-Being” is available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and elsewhere. Visit Creators Publishing at to learn more. For more on personal well-being, visit COPYRIGHT 2021 ENERGY EXPRESS LTD.

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