Getting regular check-ups as a preventative measure. Life is busy and one’s top priority should be health. Visiting your primary care physician allows you to know what is happening with your internal systems. This allows you to address any issues that may lead to chronic illness. I believe in preventative care, and I make sure to have a yearly physical. If I do not feel well, I schedule an appointment, if it is something I can address ongoing holistically I proceed thereafter.
The term Blue Zones has been used to describe places where people live long and healthy lives. What exactly does it take to live a long and healthy life? What are the science and the secret behind longevity and life extension? In this series, we are talking to medical, wellness, and longevity experts to share “5 Things You Need To Live A Long, Healthy, & Happy Life”. As a part of this series, I had the distinct pleasure of interviewing Kimberly Parker
Kimberly Parker is a licensed psychotherapist and Forensic Evaluator that specializes in trauma. Kimberly is also a forensic evaluator, and she volunteers to provide a psychological piece for those escaping inhumane treatment from various countries. Kimberly’s area of expertise is in PTSD, Traumatic Brain Injuries, Personality Disorders, Somatic Disorders, and eating disorders. Kimberly assists clients with healing their various parts of self with evidence-based treatment models such as EMDR & Brainspotting Therapy.
Thank you so much for joining us! Our readers would love to “get to know you” a bit better. Can you tell us a bit about your ‘backstory’?
As far as can remember I always loved animals, they were my closest friends. When I was a child, I remember I would sit outside with my cats and just be in nature. My animals were always there for me and even as an adult, I now assist in saving animals. When I found out at a young age that the people in this world are not peaceful as nature, I wanted to know what made them behave in such an ill manner. I am now a therapist, and I am dedicated to learning about the human mind.
Can you share with us the most interesting story from your career? Can you tell us what lessons or ‘takeaways’ you learned from that?
I specialize in a trauma-based treatment called Brainspotting Therapy, I was told by some of my soldiers that the people on the base call me “The Eye Lady That Does That Thing” and then they move their fingers around in front of their faces. I found that to be hilarious and at the same time I love that the word is spreading that you can find healing in the specialized therapies that I provide. When I go back to my memory museum, I can see the path that led me to where I am now and that I was born to become a healer.
None of us can achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful for who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?
Dr. Ingrid Whitaker, Dr. Leon Bouvier, Dr. Charles White, and Dar Detki were my supervisor at my internship and Mrs. Mary was my clinical supervisor. I am grateful to have met everyone as they guided me and encouraged me that I will do great. I met my professors at Old Dominion University, and they cared for me and my education. It was meant for me to meet them along my path. I didn’t have any real guidance on how to navigate college and neither did I have encouragement.
You are a successful leader. Which three-character traits do you think were most instrumental to your success? Can you please share a story or example for each?
Having a moral compass, I believe in doing what is right and ethical. I believe this comes from having a love for animals and for people who do not have a voice to advocate for their behalf. Being humble because having pride blinds your goals. I have read throughout history and have seen people who have had goals crumble due to being prideful. Empathy means one can see the vantage point of others and understand their emotional responses.
Ok, thank you for all that. Now let’s shift to the focus of our interview about health and longevity. To begin, can you share with our readers a bit about why you are an authority in the fields of health, wellness, and longevity? In your opinion, what is your unique contribution to the world of wellness?
Based on the results of my clientele and their 180-degree transformation, shows that I am an expert in health and wellness. There isn’t a quick fix to changing your lifestyle and you must want the change. Longevity is a mindset over carnality. When working with clients I am very transparent and inform them I need transparency from them as well.
Seekers throughout history have traveled great distances and embarked on mythical quests in search of the “elixir of life,” a mythical potion said to cure all diseases and give eternal youth. Has your search for health, vitality, and longevity taken you on any interesting paths or journeys? We’d love to hear the story.
My search leads me to create a small library corner in my study of some rare to unknown books that discuss solutions to every ailment that the human body can obtain. I am a believer that there is a cure for all diseases and that we should research micro-nutrients. Micro-nutrients are when one feeds their body down to the cellular level, I have read that there are foods that work better based on your blood type. Fasting is important as it gives your gastrointestinal system a break. When we eat blood rushes to that area to process the food and that takes a lot of energy from the body. So, feeding our body fruits, and vegetables and ingesting herbs will increase our longevity. Reducing inflammation helps prevent autoimmune diseases, cancer, depression, and neurocognitive disorders. I suggest researching longevity across cultures and reviewing their cultural diet.
Based on your research or experience, can you please share your “5 Things You Need to Live a Long & Healthy Life”? (Please share a story or an example for each)
Cultivate Positive Relationships:
- Surround yourself with supportive and positive people. It does not have to be a large group of people. Cultivating close relationships with a few trustworthy people that work with you as a team. Having a strong unit is known to extend your life. I can count the number of true friends I have on one hand. They have shown themselves to be loyal in my time of need and so have I.
- Physical Health: Exercise increases dopamine which allows you to be in a positive mood. Eating healthy and preferably a plant-based diet. I read a book called “How Not to Die” and it discusses ways to reverse disease through healthy eating. When you read the book it gives suggestions of fruits, vegetable herbs, and the benefits of vitamins. This book also discusses mental health and ‘how not to die from depression”. In my home study I have a decent amount of literature on healthy eating. I also read a lot of studies from “The Linus Pauling Institute”. Also, staying hydrated and I suggest drinking water and coconut water that has natural electrolytes. Plus, coconut water is good for your brain and gut health. Sleep is linked to physical health. I listen to “Green Noise” at night and there are different color combinations of noises that one can listen to even during the day. You can feel your brain go into a calm space.
- Stay Positive and Optimistic: Positive affirmation and utilizing somatic techniques I found to be very helpful. Your mind is a powerful mechanism, what you tell yourself will manifest through your actions.
- Mental Health: Managing stress through therapy, meditation, listening to music, and positive affirmations. I take breaks in between therapy sessions with my patients. I practice mindfulness meditation and perform stretches to break up the tension in my body. I specialize in PTSD, so I hear a lot of traumatic stories. I used to feel guilty for taking breaks and then I decided to prioritize my self-care. If I am not feeling well then, I cannot be present for my clients or even my relationships with friends. I must be present for my pets and take care of them as well. I also talk to a mentor and a therapist at least once per month. My motto is “A good therapist has a therapist”. I read my Torah/Bible along with prayer and that does wonders for my mental health. I receive many of my answers from the Holy Scriptures and that has never steered me down the wrong path.
- Getting regular check-ups as a preventative measure. Life is busy and one’s top priority should be health. Visiting your primary care physician allows you to know what is happening with your internal systems. This allows you to address any issues that may lead to chronic illness. I believe in preventative care, and I make sure to have a yearly physical. If I do not feel well, I schedule an appointment, if it is something I can address ongoing holistically I proceed thereafter.
Can you suggest a few things needed to live a life filled with happiness, joy, and meaning?
Having faith in yourself and having self-worth brings happiness. Do not allow your happiness to stem from materialism, it can become an addiction to consumerism. True happiness comes from self-love, and kindness to others, and what I found is assisting those who are underserved. Helping those in poverty and animals who need love is where I find pure joy. I believe wholeheartedly in “God gives seeds to the Sower” This means you will be provided with more than enough when you help those in need and it’s coming from your heart. Being humble, and confident in your daily activities and casting down any pride that may reside in you will bring happiness.
Some argue that longevity is genetic, while others say that living a long life is simply a choice. What are your thoughts on this nature vs. nurture debate? Which is more important?
Longevity can be genetic and at the same time if you smoke daily, drink alcohol, and eat a fat-saturated diet, you will have health issues. What you eat affects your physical and mental health, I have researched foods that can cause gene activation. Gene activation of chronic disease or activation longevity. I believe in longevity by choice and reducing the risk of chronic illness if there is a component of hereditary. I have heard people state different diseases operate in their family generational line, so why not fight the disease with interventions through nutrition and exercise? Having so many GMO foods, access to fast food, and living on the go creates an environment to steer toward unhealthy ways of eating. People I consider experts in the field of longevity are Dr. Josh Axe, Dr. Laila Afrika, Dr. Andrew Huberman, and the Linus Pauling Institute.
Life sometimes takes us on challenging paths. How have you managed to bounce back from setbacks to cultivate physical, mental, and emotional health?
I went to therapy to find out where the negative thoughts and feelings started. Most importantly I started praying more and reading the scriptures. I noticed that I lost sight of taking my herbal supplements, so I started incorporating this into my life. I joined a gym and started taking care of my self-care needs. During my break between clients if the weather permits, I go outside and meditate.
Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Do you have a story about how that was relevant in your life?
Shakespeare Give every man thy ear but few thy voice” One learns more by being silent and observing others. You can hear your inner voice and I can that your discernment. A wise person only speaks when necessary.
You are a person of enormous influence. If you could start a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂
Starting a platform discussing the methods of healing your mind, body, and soul. I would like to demonstrate and have visitors who bring the proper knowledge and moral compass on how to heal.
What is the best way for our readers to continue to follow your work online?
LinkedIn: (9) Kimberly Parker | LinkedIn
This was very inspiring. Thank you so much for the time you spent on this. We wish you continued success.